The Best Environment for Growing Tomatoes:
What is the best Environment for growing tomatoes?”
This is a question both new and old farmers ask themselves all the time.
They are interested in knowing this, because without the right conditions, they cannot expect to get the right returns from their tomato farms.
To answer their question, I compiled a list of the conditions that must be present in every tomato farm.
This list is based on my 7 years experience growing tomatoes.
Keep scrolling for more details…
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The Best Soil Types and Textures For Growing Tomato
If you want to score it big in tomato farming, grow your tomatoes in Loam and sandy loam soils.
Tomatoes plants are heavy feeders.
To produce high yields lots of tomato fruits they require lots of nutrients like potassium, sulfur, calcium, among others.
For this reason, they need loamy soil or sandy loam so that their roots can grow deep into the soil to extract ENOUGH of these minerals and water.
Avoid clay soil.
Heavy clay soils present challenges to tomato production.
Tomato plants find it difficult to grow deep roots.
Without growing deep roots, they cannot get sufficient minerals to support high yield.
That’s not all about heavy clay soil.
Clay soil is prone to waterlogging in the rainy season.
If you your soil has lots of clay, you can improve the texture by tilling the soil then incorporating
- Peat moss or
- Other organic amendments before planting.
Doing this will make the soil fairly loose and well-drained.
Tomatoes struggle in dry soil.
Without sufficient soil moisture, tomatoes cannot get the required amounts minerals like calcium, potassium, etc. hence develop deficiency symptoms like blossom end rot.
Nevertheless, avoid planting them in excessively wet, waterlogged soil, or anywhere standing water gathers after a rain.
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The Right Soil pH For Growing Tomatoes
Soil’s acidity or alkalinity is measured by its PH.
A pH of 7 is considered neutral.
On the other hand, anything lower than 7 acidic soil and anything higher is alkaline. Tomatoes grow best in neutral or near-neutral soil.
If your soils PH is on the extreme ends—i.e. highly acidic or basic, so you may have to modify your soil’s pH for best results.
To raise soil PH incorporate ground agricultural lime into the soil before planting.
On the other hand, to lower Soil PH add elemental sulfur or fertilizers that contain ammonium sulfate.
Tomatoes grow best at a PH range of 6-8.
This PH is either slightly acidic or slightly Basic.
Avoid growing tomatoes at extreme soil PH’s
Tomatoes grow best in moderately fertile soil with lots of organic matter.
Avoid growing tomatoes in soil with excess Nitrogen.
Soils with excessive levels of nitrogen promote vegetative growth at the expense of fruit development.
In case your soil is low in organic matter, incorporate compost when you prepare the soil.
You can also add an all-purpose fertilizer containing potassium and phosphorous. Avoid fertilizers with high nitrogen content, because these can result in bushy plants that produce little fruit.
A good starting point when you prepare your garden is to have your soil tested. Soil test kits are available at most garden stores as well as your nearest university extension office. The results of the soil test will reveal nutrient content and pH, as well as make recommendations for soil amendments.
Here’s The Right Temperature and Altitude For Growing Tomatoes:
Tomatoes loves growing in the open sun, at temperatures of between 20-30 degrees Celsius.
Grow tomatoes in this temperatures and you’ll be smiling all the way to the bank.
Avoid growing tomatoes in high altitude areas.
Tomatoes suffer from frosts which is a common occurrence in high altitude areas.
Altitudes of 0-1200 Meters above sea level are the best for tomato production.
Growing Tomatoes in Containers
Tomatoes are frequently grown in an outdoor garden, but you can also grow them in containers.
Growing tomatoes in a container great advantages.
- It allows you complete control over the growing medium.
An ideal potting mix for tomatoes consists of equal parts potting soil, perlite, sphagnum peat moss and compost.
- You can control the amount of water you give each plant with precision thus saving water.
- You can control the amount of fertilizers and nutrients you give thus save money in the process.