Full Member
Posts: 22
Joined: Tue May 17, 2011 12:38 pm
Location: Central IL

Excellent Article on Pruning Tomato Plants

I am a rookie gardener who intents to support my tomato plants on stakes. Everything I have read indicates it is best to prune staked plants to a single stem. Something about cutting off suckers that form at a leaf axil, whatever that is.

If you're as ignorant as I am, and few are, perhaps you will find this article, WITH PICTURES very handy.

Senior Member
Posts: 251
Joined: Wed Apr 13, 2011 8:47 pm
Location: Westminster Colorado

Thanks for posting up the link. Nice refresher article, with some new stuff I didn't know about. And of course pictures always. help. :lol:

User avatar
Site Admin
Posts: 9413
Joined: Sun Feb 08, 2004 12:59 pm
Location: Amherst, MA USDA Zone 5a

Be sure to check the non-forum [url=]gardening section[/url] of our site, we have a ton of articles there, too. Here an article written Scott The Helpful Gardener about [url=]Planting Tomatoes[/url]. :D

Green Thumb
Posts: 302
Joined: Fri Aug 13, 2010 11:21 am

When I grew my first tomatoes, I had no idea what "pruning" meant. But, I took a stab at any way and later learned how to prune the toms.

It is the suckers and you will see them quite easily if you watch (and pinch them out) every day. I've had some already this year that made me ponder a bit over which was the main stem.

And it is OK to keep the suckers - they become stems as well and generally produce a lot tomatoes. It is really about controlling the size of the plant. I like to let some suckers grow but not too many. It is a personal choice. Many people don't remove them at all.

Super Green Thumb
Posts: 7500
Joined: Tue May 06, 2008 7:02 pm
Location: El Cerrito, CA

Pruning tomatoes, IMHO, is one of those practices that is Just Too Much, on top of everything else. If you want to do it for its own sake, sure, go ahead! :)

But in trying to give my plants everything they need and keep the permanent landscape here from falling into total decay, plus other normal responsibilities, I decided not to drive myself nuts with pruning my tomatoes. I'll take every single tomato my plants want to give me, whether the plants are in the raised beds or in the 10-gallon planting pots. :D

Cynthia H.
Sunset Zone 17, USDA Zone 9

Return to “TOMATO FORUM”