20 May 2011

Grow Your Own Guide - Tomato

Tomatoes, they come in many different shapes - round, plum-shaped,cherry or monster-sized in yellow, orange, green, red and stripy.

Grow Your Own Tomatoes Guide

1. Fill a shallow container with soil (egg boxes are great as they are biodegradable). Scatter the seeds thinly over the surface. Make sure the container has holes in the bottom for drainage.





2.Cover the seeds with a thin layer of soil, then water them gently. Add a label, then place the container on a windowsill.






3.Thin out the seedlings to allow room for others to continue growing and developing good roots. Water to keep the soil moist but not too wet.





4. Once two true leaves have formed, the seedlings are ready to be put into individual small pots. Be gentle and careful as you place in a seedling.





5. Once your plant has grown twice as high as its pot, plant it into a larger pot. Make a hole first, then place in the plant, pat the soil around it and water.






6. Push in a cane a little away from the main stem. Use the string to tie the stem to the cane.







7. Pinch out the shoots that appear where the leaves join the stems. Pinch out the growing tip once your plant has four or five flowering stems.






8. Spray leaves with water to encourage the fruits to set. Water each day and liquid feed every week to grow the best fruit.





Companion Planting

Grow marigolds in the same pots as the tomato plants. These flowers cna keep aphids away, which might otherwise infest your tomato plant. This is called companion planting.


Kids Gardening

If you are gardening with small children, they can take part in growing tomatoes. Generally I use tomorite growbags but containers are great and children can take ownership of their plant. They can also make their own lolly stick labels and stone markers. Cover the tip of the cane with a topper or a plastic bottle to prevent any eye poking. The children can take a trip to the garden centre to select the seeds or plants and then help plant them.

For older children they can become more involved by selecting the seeds, making charts to show growth progress and to help design planting calendars.It's a great way to test maths, 'how tall is the sunflower?' or 'how big is the pumpkin?'


Handy Websites

Companion Planting - Garden Toad


Handy Books

Carrots Love Tomatoes: Secrets of Companion Planting for Successful GardeningCarrots Love Tomatoes: Secrets of Companion Planting for Successful Gardening

by Louise Riotte.


The classic volume on the confirmed benefits and accumulated folklore of companion planting. In addition to vegetables, it covers companion planting techniques for fruit and nut trees, grasses and grains, ornamentals, and weeds.


The Complete Guide to Companion Planting: Everything You Need to Know to Make Your Garden Successful (Back-To-Basics Gardening)The Complete Guide to Companion Planting: Everything You Need to Know to Make Your Garden Successful (Back-To-Basics Gardening)


Great Garden Companions: A Companion-Planting System for a Beautiful, Chemical-Free Vegetable GardenGreat Garden Companions: A Companion-Planting System for a Beautiful, Chemical-Free Vegetable Garden


The A - Z of Companion PlantingThe A - Z of Companion Planting

Roses Love Garlic: Companion Planting and Other Secrets of FlowersRoses Love Garlic: Companion Planting and Other Secrets of Flowers

5 comments:

  1. New follower here. :) Looking forward to reading more of your posts.
    ~cheryl

    ReplyDelete
  2. I would like to see a same blog post related to growing your own potatoes as well. I am looking to build one garden portion for potatoes, and cannot really find a good tutorial.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Your wish is my command, I shall add more tutorials over the next few days - potatoes next! Thanks for the feedback.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I love your photography. That, and your kids are so lovely.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Thanks Anna, that's so kind of you. I'm a bit new to photography but I'm trying! Thanks for your support.

    ReplyDelete