Greener Thumb
Posts: 729
Joined: Wed Mar 31, 2010 11:58 pm
Location: zone 4

questions and *gulp* pics

So these are my little grape tomato seedlings.
Will nipping the little leaves lower on the stem help the plant? I just up potted these guys last thursday to the base of the leaves. So all the growth and those lower leaves are from less thana week....
I don't know what is causing them to grow like this, all I added to the cups was garden soil and some worm castings. I'm a little worried
about how thin the stems are :?

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Greener Thumb
Posts: 1855
Joined: Thu Jan 22, 2009 8:40 pm
Location: N. California

no don't pick them off, and get them some more light.

Senior Member
Posts: 244
Joined: Thu Mar 18, 2010 9:59 pm

yup, more light, shine bright flourescent light at it until it cracks and tells you the truth. :P

also, don't be afraid of smacking it around a bit, I'm not kidding, place it where there's a light breeze or get a fan on it. let it know your displeasure at its leggyness. :P

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Green Thumb
Posts: 317
Joined: Sat Jul 18, 2009 11:29 pm
Location: Nagoya: Japan

Re: questions and *gulp* pics

Snipping leaves at that early stage is only going to reduce its ability to photosynthesise and therefore grow…. :shock:

Super Green Thumb
Posts: 3062
Joined: Fri Aug 07, 2009 5:40 pm
Location: ohio

You don't want to clip those small leaves because they are actully supplying nutrients to the plant. You will want to get (now, this is the commonly used method) a 4 ft. T8 fluorescent shoplight and 2 6500K bulbs and a timer that will keep the light on the plant for about 16 hrs. per day during the regular daylight hours. Keep this light about 3 in. or less about the seedlings.

You can do a forum search for "seed starting" or "grow lights" and get a lot more information on the subject.

Another thing you will want to do on a daily basis is take your hand gently "pet" the tomato plant so that is sways side to side. You do not need to do it for long, maybe like 15 sec. or whatever a few times per day. This will really help with making the plants stockier and stronger.

Good luck! :D

Super Green Thumb
Posts: 2097
Joined: Fri Jul 25, 2008 7:27 pm
Location: Mid Ohio

They look perfectly normal to me. At that point I plant them deeper, up to those lower seed leaves. If nothing else it keeps them from looking so scrawny. They start to bulk up after that if given enough light. Mine (that size) are outside now with half day sun whenever possible so that I can use the lights for other things.

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Senior Member
Posts: 175
Joined: Wed Feb 17, 2010 1:49 pm
Location: Hermitage, TN.

Yep, what soil said. Leave them be. They will fall off eventually if the plants deems it necessary or maybe just stay on for the whole life of the plant (and get buried in the future?). Do get them a bit more light also & you should be good to go. They will be fine in those cups for at least another 2-3 weeks.

- Steve

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