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Open field tomato farming

Open field tomato farming:

Did you know that:

  • 90% of the World’s Tomato production is open field?
  • That you can harvest up of 60 tons an acre simply by growing tomatoes in the open field?
  • That it costs far much less to start open field tomato cultivation?
  • You can save tones of cash growing tomatoes in the open?

These great numbers and facts show that open field tomato farming is:

  • Practical
  • Highly Profitable,
  • And Rewarding.

Therefore, if you’ve been thinking of growing tomatoes, you’ve come to the right place.

In this blogpost, you find all the details you need to start open field tomato farming.

For example…

The returns possible from open field farming

Many people wrongly assume that growing tomatoes in the open field is unprofitable.

Instead, they think growing tomatoes in a fancy greenhouse is the REAL deal.

However, research data and farmer reports indicate otherwise.

This data shows that open field tomato production is as profitable as greenhouse production.

In some instances, outdoor tomato production beats greenhouse tomato production.

“Here’s how this is possible?”

You May ask.

Producing of tomatoes in a greenhouse is super expensive.

You need an excess of $ 200,000 to construct 1 hectare of greenhouse.

Therefore, in the regard of starting costs, open field tomato farming is best!

Secondly, it’s possible to mechanize outdoor tomato cultivation.

You’ll do this by using specially designed tractors and farm machinery.

With the machinery you can transplant seedlings, weed your field, spray, and harvest the tomato once they are ready.

Things are however different in greenhouse tomato production.

Since greenhouses are an indoor environment, this severely limits the use of machinery like tractors.

You are on the right path if you are considering open tomato field production.

How to Reduce Costs Associated with Open Field Tomato Farming?

As you grow tomatoes in the open field, you will incur costs on:

  1. Seed purchase,
  2. Land cultivation,
  3. Weeding,
  4. Pest control,
  5. Staking,
  6. Harvesting,
  7. Transportation,
  8. And many other unseen costs not listed here.

When all these costs add up, they could EXCEED the returns you are capable of getting.

Your question therefore is, “How do I cut costs of each so I make HANDSOME profits?

The answer to this question lies in the use of creativity.

How to about it.

First is to carefully examine the costs, and determine fixed costs and variable costs.

A casual glance of the above list, you’ll realize, we have two items that fall under the category of fixed costs.

These two items are

  1. Seed purchase
  2. Land cultivation

The above items fall under fixed costs because there is nothing you can do to reduce or change them.

The other costs are variable costs.

So to reduce costs, you have to focus on cutting the variable cost.

Let’s say you want to stake the tomatoes.

The question to ask yourself is, “What options can I use to stake the tomatoes.”

Next is to find the cost of each option.

Finally, is to choose the cheapest option among what you need.

Tomato growing vs onion growing

Areas Suitable for Open Field Tomato farming

Tomatoes can grow on every continent on this earth.

But to make good money out of them, you must grow tomatoes in the Most IDEAL environment.

Tomatoes like to grow where:

The Area is warm, Frost and Winter free

Tomatoes grow best where the night and day temperatures is 18-30 degrees Celsius.

The plants require this temperature range to:

  • Grow luxuriously,
  • Produce flowers
  • and set fruits.

We find this temperature in the tropics so that is the natural environment for the tomato plant.

If you live outside the tropics, you too can grow tomatoes.

However, you have to do it in summer or in the season when you can get the above temperatures.

Secondly, tomatoes suffer terribly when exposed to frosts.

Winters also kill of tomatoes…so if you are growing tomatoes in the open field, avoid these conditions like plague.

Soil Conditions—tomato can grow on all soil types as long as its fertile

Whether you grow tomato in sandy soil, clay, or loam, tomato will grow very well.

All you need to do is ensure the soil is:

  • Free from bacterial wilt, and other soil pathogens like nematodes.
  • Well drained and free from stagnating water.

Scientists also warn farmers against growing tomato on soils that members of the Solanaceae family were growing.

For example, you need to avoid growing tomato on soils that were previously under capsicum, potatoes,

Plant Population per Acre of open field Tomatoes

One acre is capable of holding 11,200 open field tomato plants.

With this plant population, you can accurately know your expected yield.

Assuming that each plant produces 3 kilos of tomato fruits, you should harvest about 30 tons per acre for open pollinated varieties like Rio Grande.

Other hybrid varieties are able to give up to 40-50 tons per acre!

The spacing between plants and rows determines the Plant population per acre

A spacing of 2 feet X 2 feet is the best for growing open field tomatoes.

At this distance, plants have enough space to give maximum yields.

Spacing the plants too closely will make the field too bushy.

Close spacing will also create challenges when spraying pesticides, staking and doing other management practices.

On the other hand, spacing the plants far from each other wastes space.

Huge spacing reduces plant population per acre and yield too!

That’s why 2 feet X 2 feet is the best spacing for open field tomato.

Top Tomato Varieties suitable for open field farming

  • Rambo F1
  • Oxly
  • Rio Grande
  • Tylka F1
  • Asila F1
  • Star 9065
  • Kilele F1
  • Galilea F1 improved
  • Shanty F1
  • Roma
  • Cal-J
  • Kentom F1
  • Kubwa F1
  • Randah F1

Management Practices You must consider When Growing Tomatoes in The Open Field

Pruning

When it comes to pruning tomatoes, you remove the excess shoots that grow between the side shoots.

Here below is a video showing how to prune tomatoes.

Staking

You need to support tomato plants on stakes.

Why?

Staking ensures:

  • That the fruits do not touch the soil,
  • Fruits don’t fall off before they are ripe,
  • Tomato plants grow within the ridges or beds so whenever work on the farm you don’t have to step on them.

Tomato Pests that stress Open Field tomato farming and How to deal with them

There are tens of tomato pests and diseases that destroy tomato plants.

However, there is one pest and one disease that Trumps them all.

This pest and disease are

  • Tomato
  • And bacterial wilt.

These pest and disease are difficult to control.

Once they attack a farm, there’s very little you can do to stop them.

That’s not all.

These pest and disease are resistant to pesticides, are very difficult to spot

How to completely destroy with Tuta Absoluta:

The only way to kill this tomato pest is, “to use the appropriate pesticides.”

Tuta Abosluta is resistant to many pesticides.

“Only a handful are able to kill it.” Scientists and farmers agree.

These pesticides are:

  • Evisect (whose active ingredient is Thiocyclam hydrogen Oxalate 50% W/W)
  • Escort (active Emamectin Benzoate)

Though these pesticides can control Tuta Absoluta, they are very expensive.

One liter of the chemicals costs hundreds of dollars.

If you have 3 acres or more of open field tomatoes, you’ll need about 3 liters of these chemicals.

Just imagine spending hundreds of dollars on one farm input.

You and I know what will happen.

Costs will skyrocket!

Fortunately, there is a way that you could CUT this expense–DRASTICALLY.

How?

“Just make your own pesticide at home.”

Really?

Is it possible?

“Are you saying that I can make my own pesticide?”

Yes. You can do it.

In fact, you can make a better, and very effective pesticide that beats all the commercially available pesticides.

“How?”

You may ask.

Let me refer you to a book that will show you how to do it.

I could have given you the steps of making the pesticide, however, making the pesticide is somehow detailed.

Giving the steps here will make this blogpost 800 words longer.

This book is Organic Farming by Youngsang Cho.

The book gives all the details of manufacturing Liquid Sulfur.

This pesticide kills all manner of pests.

Whether they are insects, bacteria, funguses or viruses, it destroys them all.

The book only costs $30 on Amazon, yet it will save you hundreds of dollars in pesticide purchase.

That’s not all.

In it, you’ll find information on the principles of pest control, how to make natural fertilizer and more.

Check it out here!

Related post: Tomato Farming Vs Onion Farming

How to Destroy Bacterial Wilt in Tomatoes

To completely destroy bacterial wilt, you have to first know the habits of bacteria.

These organisms often colonize an environment when there are no other competing organisms and the environment is ideal for their growth.

So how do you stop bacterial wilt?

Must I use chemicals to fumigate my soil?

The use of chemicals, is absolutely unnecessary.

and using them does not assure you that you’ll control bacterial wilt in tomatoes.

The best way to destroy bacterial wilt is to introduce competition.

By this I mean that you grow billions and billions of bacteria to compete against bacterial wilt that is caused by Xanthomonas Campestris.

Once you grow these bacteria, put them in the irrigation water.

Do this, and Tomato bacterial wilt will be a past event.

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