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Need an expert opinion on tomato plants in containers....

I know you're supposed to have just one plant per 5gallon container ( recommended at at least ). However I have a few 5 gallon containers right now with two cherry tomato plants in each one. Litterally growing side-by-side in the same pot. Thing is.......nothing seems to be wrong with them AT ALL........No signs of competing with each other or stress. They look healthy as ever. Now all the plants are at the budding stage.

My question is...........should I still sacrafice one of the plants in each pot for the sake of the other ??...........I'm of the opinion that if something ain't broke.....don't try to fix it.

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Well don't sacrifice it. You could repot it but I'm no expert.

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Location: Blue Mountain, NY

I agree with removing the 1 plant and putting it in its own container. The roots will be too much for one 5 gal container as they grow bigger. I made that mistake once and the plants did not produce they way they should have.
Christine :wink:

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I have concern over moving the plant to another container. It probably should be sacrificed because one plant will grow more vigorously and should produce more fruit and fuit of higher quality than would be the case with two crowded plants in the same container. Sometimes when my tomatoes are in full production in the heat of the summer, even five gallons becomes marginal unless set up with drip irrigation on a timer.

You said that the plants are ready to start setting fruit. If the plants were younger then I would suggest splitting them into separate containers. But now that would be too traumatic at this stage, therefore the best course is to cut one plant off at the ground. You can take the cut plant, trim the top growth off severely and stick the stem in water. It should root in a couple of weeks and would perhaps be ready in time to give you a late crop. You will be surprised at how fast the stem will take root and how once planted will form a full sized plant again .

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Thanks for the suggestions guys.

I'll take your advice Alex and root new plants from the ones I cut. I didn't realize you could actually do that with tomato plants. I just felt really hard about outright killing a healthy looking plant even for the sake of another.

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A lot of us have trouble killing one plant to keep another healthier. :lol:

Depending on the size, I might try dividing them. But as Alex said, if they are so large they are about to set fruit cuttings are a safer idea.

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Of course what I would do doesn't matter since I'm a complete novice! lol

Anyway, you said you have a couple containers with 2 plants per container right? I would treat it as an experiment. I would take one plant from one container, but leave one with 2 plants. Then you can compare and know for sure what would happen, and which plants do better.

As I said though, I know NOTHING! lol I just think that it's fun to experiment that way. I currently have some peas started at the same time, some growing inside, and some outside, just to compare.

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