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Emerald
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Joined: Sat Apr 26, 2008 3:23 pm
Location: Virginia Mountains

Tips for Growing Tomatoes in Planter Box

Hi, I am new to the forum and I am trilled to find there is a friendly gardener forum in the big world of internet!!!

My husband made me a box for planting tomato’s and squash. I would like to know if anyone has any pointers. I will be filling my box with top soil and some humus. I will also be using miracle grow every two weeks. That is unless someone can give me better ideas.

Thanks in a advance!

Emerald
A chance not taken could be a chance you missed. Love deeply, laugh out loud and drink wine every chance you get!!!

opabinia51
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Location: Victoria, BC

Aha! You've come to the right place. :D First of all, welcome to the HG!

Feel free to stick around the show us pictures of your boxes and your plants as they grow. And offer any advice that you may have.

Synthetic fertilzers are actually not that great. I used to use them as well. But, what they do is feed the plants and not the soil. They end up killing beneficial soil microbes that help your plants. Furthermore, you run the risk of burning your plants with synthetics. Instead add a handfull of kelp or blood meal to the each whole when you plant your seeds or plants. And fertilze once a week with a liquid seaweed or liquid fish fertilizer.

Add some compost for your humus and add some manure as well. It will help your plants.

Tomatoes and Squash are companion plants so that's good. With regard to growing your tomatoes, use a cedar stake to tie them to and old nylons work great. Don't use gardening tape because it stretches. Sucker your plants each week to increase your fruit production.


How to do this?

Between the apex of the main branches and the stem, you will see little leaflets growing; pinch these off.

When planting your tomatoe seedlings; pinch off all the branches except for those of the crown (top leaves and branches) and bury the entire stem in the ground. Add a handful of kelp meal into the hole and bury. Water thoroughly.

Squash will go slow for the first bit and then it can really get away from you. So just beware that it can take up a lot of space but, this is a good thing because it will shade the soil, and help smother out weeds.

Try planting beans as well that will climb up your tomatoe vines and feed the tomatoes as well.

Have fun! I'm sure everyone else will soon be offering you their advice as well.

Remember ask ten different gardener's the same question, get ten different answers!

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Reptilicus
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Joined: Mon Mar 31, 2008 4:23 pm
Location: So. Georgia, USA

Welcome, I'm a new kid on the block around here as well. Here's a great site with pictures on how to prune the tomato plants.


https://www.taunton.com/finegardening/how-to/articles/pruning-tomatoes.aspx

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Emerald
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Joined: Sat Apr 26, 2008 3:23 pm
Location: Virginia Mountains

What a wonderful welcome!!! Many, many thanks!

I agree that the miracle grow breaks down the soil. I have gardened long enough to see what happens year after year using it but didn’t really understand it until you brought it to my attention. Now I know why my beds would become dead so to speak. There is a very good chance this is why most of the beds here don’t produce flowers as well. We have lived here for two years and I have had to fight to keep my plants living. I have found box after box of miracle grow so apparently the prior owners used it too. I was thinking I had completely lost my gardening thumb. My husband (I call him my hero) is going to bring me more dirt and I will be planting my tomato & squash plants this evening. I will try your advice instead of putting miracle grow on them. Please forgive me if I keep asking questions because my gardening is what I do best. If my hands aren’t in the dirt I’m not happy. I will have him pick up the things you advised. I would love to post pictures as they grow.

Thanks again!!! :D :D :D

Emerald
Last edited by Emerald on Thu May 15, 2008 7:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
A chance not taken could be a chance you missed. Love deeply, laugh out loud and drink wine every chance you get!!!

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Emerald
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Joined: Sat Apr 26, 2008 3:23 pm
Location: Virginia Mountains

Help.......

Since I last posted I have called around to different places trying to find seaweed and fish fertilizer. No, one around here carries it. I called Southern States and even called three different nurseries. You are not going to believe what one guy at the nursery said. He told me that fertilizer was fertilizer and all the seaweed, fish, bone meal, blood meal, was just to take your money :roll: …………I know that organic is the very best for my soil and plants so I’m not discouraged. (I will just take this guy a great big tomato when my plants are fabulous :wink: )

One problem, I am in VA and I’m actually getting a little late start on my planting. My hero will be bringing my soil, manure & humus home today so I can get these babies in the dirt. I will be putting blood meal in with each plant. In order to have the seaweed and fish fertilizer I will have to order it and it’s a bit expensive. Is there another way to fertilize? Could I mix in some all purpose fertilizer mix and get buy? I have done this in the past when first planting but always resorted to using Miracle grow after about three weeks.

Sorry for all the questions :oops: but I know you must start off right to have healthy vigorous plants.
A chance not taken could be a chance you missed. Love deeply, laugh out loud and drink wine every chance you get!!!

opabinia51
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Hey not a problem with the questions. To bad that you can find the kelp meal and what not. That fellow is still living in the chemical paradigm that North America is enshrined in, no matter.

Blood meal works great, if you can find it rock phosphate is another good soil ammendmant, mulched leaves in the fall are great. Manure is a gret ammendment, coffee grinds (used) work miracles but, be sure to mix them at least with the soil but with leaves, they works miracles. They are usually free from local coffee shops.

Let's see, what else is out there for organic fertilzers?......... Well, bone meal helps. Save your eggshells and crush them and put them around your tomatoe plants. This will help discourage blossom end rot.

If you can't find the Kelp meal and and liquid seaweed etc, don't worry your garden will still do well.

In the fall add mulched up leaves and manure as well as coffee grounds and grass clippings to you beds. In the spring you will reap the benefits.

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Emerald
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Location: Virginia Mountains

Thanks

Thanks for the info. I am off to plant today if the rain will hold off a little. This has been very helpful!!! :D

Emerald
A chance not taken could be a chance you missed. Love deeply, laugh out loud and drink wine every chance you get!!!

opabinia51
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Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 9:58 pm
Location: Victoria, BC

Thank you for the kind words Emerald. Have fun planting. I planted a tomatoe in a pot last night as well as some herbs in a container.

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Emerald
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Joined: Sat Apr 26, 2008 3:23 pm
Location: Virginia Mountains

I will post some pictures of my little box garden when I get the mulch in. I didnt have as much room as I had hoped but cant wait to see how things grow working from scratch. I did get the blood meal and a few more bags of compost so I have a well balanced healthy soil.

I am so excited!! :D I know I sound kinda silly but I don't think there is anything I enjoy more than watching things grow.
A chance not taken could be a chance you missed. Love deeply, laugh out loud and drink wine every chance you get!!!

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webmaster
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Joined: Sun Feb 08, 2004 5:59 pm
Location: Amherst, MA USDA Zone 5a

Hey Opa, what do you think about this website's products?
https://www.jpibiodynamics.org/content/productlist.html

That site is in frames, so I had to link to it that way. Here's the original site:
https://www.jpibiodynamics.org/index_set.html

then what you do is click on the link for JPI Offerings. That organization is based in Virginia.

opabinia51
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Posts: 4659
Joined: Thu Oct 21, 2004 9:58 pm
Location: Victoria, BC

I only have a few seconds so I just quicly perused it but, I look more later. Looks interesting, my first thoughts are that they don't really give enough information the products to make an adequate interpretation as to what they'd do for the soil.

I do know that compost is basically soil minus the mineral content and I don't really think that you would need ammendments to ammend your ammendment but, I'll look into more thoroughly later.

Any soil experts out there? What do you think?

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