The best tips for growing large tomatoes

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 Nothing beats the flavor of a freshly picked tomato. With all sizes, shapes and colors on the market now, there are tomatoes for everyone, even for balcony gardeners, with these 8 best tips for growing large tomatoes.

1. The best tips for growing large tomatoes: seeds

The best tip for growing large tomatoes is to choose the seeds . These are easy to produce, provided that they come from a traditional variety and not from a hybrid variety. Put the pulp of a ripe tomato in a bowl and add a little water. A whitish film will form on the surface of the liquid. After 36 hours, add water and stir. This process separates the pulp from the seeds that fall to the bottom. Filter the liquid through a sieve, rinse the seeds in cold water and let dry on a paper towel.

2. The best tip for growing large tomatoes: sprouting

For seeds to germinate, heat is needed . Usually, the natural warmth of spring is enough, but in colder climates, gardeners can resort to some tricks to be ahead of the spring. At the end of winter, sow the seeds in small pots or in a cellar. Keep them in a warm place, such as in a heat diffuser, a polystyrene box or even on the top of your hot water system.

3. Tips for growing large tomatoes: seedlings

Seedlings can be transplanted as soon as they have produced three or four leaves and any threat of frost is discarded . If the spring weather is unpredictable in your area, transplant them into individual pots and keep them warm for a few more weeks in a sheltered place.

4. Tutors to grow large tomatoes

It is essential to put a guardian to the seedlings because they climb or crawl naturally.Thanks to the guardian, the plant grows in height, thus occupying less ground space and escaping the harmful effects of the wetland, which promotes the development of diseases. Use tomato stakes 1.5 to 2 m long and prick them in the soil near the base of each plant. Stitch the stakes at a distance of about 60 cm from each other to allow enough space for the plants to grow. Make a 10 cm hole in the front of each guardian and carefully plant each seedling, giving it a slight inclination towards its guardian. Water, then gently pat the soil around the plants, being careful not to damage the stems. As they grow, use raffia or string to attach the stems to the stakes to give them the support they need.

Use new tutors each year as they can house mushrooms . Choose square rather than round stakes to avoid slippage. Use soft ties, like old stockings instead of ropes or metal pins.

5. Mulch, a good tip for growing large tomatoes

Mulch is essential to prevent weeds and evaporation of water . Use alfalfa, sugar cane or a layer of composted bark up to 5 cm thick. Remember to put mulch only on moist soil to maintain existing moisture. Otherwise mulch will prevent rain from reaching the roots.

6. Watering to grow large tomatoes

Water everything that is dry, take a quick look for signs of pests or diseases, remove dead leaves or unwanted shoots and pick them as soon as they are ready . Like pinching small shoots, larger plants can also be pinched to control total height. Some European gardeners have already stated that to protect their seedlings from mold, they pierce the main stem of the plant perpendicularly with copper wire in two places. Although the method has never been scientifically proven, it is possible that copper compounds run in sap and attack fungi that cause mold.

Water tanks are a good way to give tomato plants the regular watering they need . Half bury a small flowerpot in the soil near the base of each guardian. Add water every day so that it fills up and slowly empties into the soil near the plants. Another method is to cut a two-liter plastic bottle in half and push the neck of the bottle into the ground like a funnel. Fill it with water every day. During the growing season, tomatoes need a constant diet. Use these tanks to give them soluble fertilizer. You can also feed them with liquid compost made of nettle or comfrey.

7. The best tips for growing large tomatoes: ripening

They are slow to ripen out in the fall, let the tomatoes ripen indoors to prevent frost damage. Place them in a dry place where it does not freeze, in brown paper bags, on newspaper or in a fruit crate. You will see that they will ripen in due course. If they refuse to ripen, you can still make a green tomato chutney. When the sunshine is at its best, you can do as in the good old days and use as reflective panels to reflect the sunlight on your tomatoes, who love it. Cover a sheet of aluminum foil, hold it against a corner stand so that it catches the sun’s rays and reflects them on ripening fruit.

8. Additional tips for growing large tomatoes

Plant marigolds around tomatoes to reduce whitefly infestations.

• Some European gardeners have already stated that to protect their plants from mold, they pierce the main stem of the plant perpendicularly with copper wire in two places. Although the method has never been scientifically proven, it is possible that copper compounds run in sap and attack fungi that cause mold.

• Stimulant: When the tomatoes begin to bloom, mix two large spoonfuls of Epsom salts in 5 liters of water and pour on the soil around the plants. Magnesium and sulfur in salts help produce healthy fruit.

SMALL SURGEONS

You might notice that tomato suckers, like other parts of the plant, have a very pungent odor. It is said that if you place the tomato suckers on cabbage leaves or other cruciferous vegetables, the smell of tomato will disorient the stonewort and the cabbage moth.

THE PINCH

Small shoots appear between the main stem and the branches, especially during the early stages of their development. If they are not pinched, the tomato plant will use its energy to become bushy and the fruit production will be reduced. Do not pinch the side shoots on the bush tomatoes because they bear the fruit of the plant.

Different varieties of tomatoes

THE BEEFSTEAK

A large, smooth fruit without imperfections with fleshy flesh.

BLACK RUSSIAN

Old variety with dark skin that has a good flavor.

THE BRANDYWINE

Another venerable variety, a big fruit like Beefsteak.

THE BROAD RIPPLE

A very prolific variety of cherry tomatoes that produces large oval-shaped yellow clusters or pear-shaped fruits.

THE GARDENER’S DELIGHT

Late variety that gives very tasty berries.

GREEN ZEBRA

Produces green fruits the size of an apricot, which turn yellow when ripe.

THE BIG SMOOTH

Reliable performance, even for inexperienced producers.

THE LIFTER MORTGAGE

A Beefsteak variety from the United States that produces a large fruit often close to 1.8 kg. By selling it for a dollar the plant in the 1930s, his producer was able to pay his mortgage in six years, hence his name.

ROMA

In the shape of an extended plum, ideal for making tomato sauces and pizzas or other Italian dishes. A bushy plant that does not need a guardian.

THE RED OF MARMANDE 2 AND SUPER MARMANDE

Large-fruited variety that produces early in the season.

THE SUMMERTAST

Prolific variety, disease resistant, a good choice for hot climates.

THE SUPER MARZANO

Pear-shaped giant fruit, disease-resistant variety.

THE SUPER SWEET 100

Variety of cherry tomatoes that produces red or yellow fruit, sometimes pear-shaped.

THE TINY TIM

A compact variety excellent for growing in pots that produces tasty berries. The plant does not need a guardian, but should not be grown on the ground.

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