kktk
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Tomatoes-grew them, but cant do it again! :)

I guess I should finally ask this question instead of struggling year after year.
I am new to this---and have been reading this forum for answers to basic stuff and realized how many things I do wrong! :)
Oh well!.....on to the issue at hand.

I grew tomatoes in the ground and in pots(18 inch deep ones with good drainage).
First year, I got great tomatoes in the ground(Phoenix area) from Mar-June.
Got great tomatoes in the pots too during this time.

Now, I cant seem to get either right.
Both my in-ground and potted ones grew too leggy, didn't give much fruit--although they stayed alive. These were roma, big beef, early girls etc.

I don't usually mulch/compost, but I do water them correctly, fertilize them every 2-3 weeks with fish emulsion, give them 6+ hours of sunshine(morning sun usually), plant them deep, prune of the lower branches, stake them with support etc etc...

What should I do with
1. The in-ground soil? I do keep adding fresh bags and mixing it in every year.
2. The potted soil? This is fresh from 6 months ago and have had only 1 season of unsuccessful plants through it. Can I reuse it again?

In either case, I usually have very few issues with tomato diseases, or worms etc. Just didn't grow healthy thick stems with fruit.

Funny thing is the first year---I did none of this and I got over 30-40 tomatoes per plant--easy! :)

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soil
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Funny thing is the first year---I did none of this and I got over 30-40 tomatoes per plant--easy! Smile
sounds like you tried too hard, it happens to a lot of people. just concentrate on building a healthy soil and the plants will do all the hard work.
For all things come from earth, and all things end by becoming earth.

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rainbowgardener
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Leggy and not much fruit sounds like not enough sun. You said 6 hrs of sun, but mostly morning, that is about the minimum tomatoes can survive on.

You didn't say where you are located. It makes a difference... 6 hrs of Texas sun is not necessarily the same as 6 hrs of Wisconsin sun (not to mention other places in the world).

If you can do it, I would look around for a sunnier spot next year. IMO tomatoes in the ground always do better than tomatoes in containers, though if you don't have an in the ground option, they can definitely be grown in large enough containers -- at least the size of a 5 gallon bucket, if not more.

I wouldn't re-use the soil in containers, but if you are adding organic matter to your ground/soil, you really don't need to keep adding bags of soil. But you really do need to start mulching and preferably composting as well. That's how you replenish the soil without having to buy more bags. The mulch prevents weeds around your plants, holds moisture in, and ultimately breaks down to feed the soil. What tomatoes really like is a good rich organic soil.

The fish emulsion is 5-1-1 (N P K). That means it is mainly a source of nitrogen, although along with the NPK, it does also have a lot of trace minerals and micronutrients. But to produce more fruit, you need to have more of the P K... Tomato Tone is an organic fertilizer designed for producing tomatoes and it is 3 -4 - 6. Fertilizing with high nitrogen sources tends to produce lots of plant growth, but not lots of fruiting.

It's a learning process for all of us! :)
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greenhornet
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Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Nov 21, 2011 11:03 pm

Put a fan

you can try to put a fan since tomato plants need to move and sway in the breeze
for additional info visit

<a href ="https://www.howtogrowavegetablegarden.net">
https://www.howtogrowavegetablegarden.net</a>

hardland
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Joined: Tue Apr 06, 2010 3:05 pm
Location: Sth Florida

Re: Tomatoes-grew them, but cant do it again! :)

kktk wrote:I guess I should finally ask this question instead of struggling year after year.
I am new to this---and have been reading this forum for answers to basic stuff and realized how many things I do wrong! :)
Oh well!.....on to the issue at hand.

I grew tomatoes in the ground and in pots(18 inch deep ones with good drainage).
First year, I got great tomatoes in the ground(Phoenix area) from Mar-June.
Got great tomatoes in the pots too during this time.

Now, I cant seem to get either right.
Both my in-ground and potted ones grew too leggy, didn't give much fruit--although they stayed alive. These were roma, big beef, early girls etc.

I don't usually mulch/compost, but I do water them correctly, fertilize them every 2-3 weeks with fish emulsion, give them 6+ hours of sunshine(morning sun usually), plant them deep, prune of the lower branches, stake them with support etc etc...

What should I do with
1. The in-ground soil? I do keep adding fresh bags and mixing it in every year.
2. The potted soil? This is fresh from 6 months ago and have had only 1 season of unsuccessful plants through it. Can I reuse it again?

In either case, I usually have very few issues with tomato diseases, or worms etc. Just didn't grow healthy thick stems with fruit.

Funny thing is the first year---I did none of this and I got over 30-40 tomatoes per plant--easy! :)
Maybe fish emulsion, 5-1-1? the one I use is to much N and not enough Potass or Phosph? In containers I use a 3-4-7 mix
Hey there Mister,
Can you tell me what happened to the seeds iv'e sown,
can you give me a reason sir, as to why they've never grown,

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Gary350
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Location: TN. 50 years of gardening experience.

I always dig a hole about the size of a 8" flower pot, throw in a small hand full of 15/15/15 fertilizer and some lime then fill the hole with water. An hour later when the water has gone down I plant the tomato plants. I always plant about 3 to 4 weeks too early April 1st so I have to cover my plants at night with empty 5 gallons buckets. I usually have tomatoes by the end of June. Within in 4 weeks I will a have my winter supply canned 100 pints and 20 quarts in mason jars. After that what I can not eat goes the the homeless shelter. Blight killed my tomatoes in late August this year even though I sprayed them twice a week for blight.

My parents live in Tempe AZ they plants in March and have ripe tomatoes by late May. The hot summer weather kills their plants by July. I am told soil is pretty bad there you need to add organic material like peat moss and some 15/15/15 fertilizer. One year they managed to keep their plants all summer by shading them from the hot sun and using one of those water mist sprayers on the plants all summer. I assume the water mist must have kept the plants cool in the 115 degrees heat.

dustyrivergardens
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Location: Holbrook Az. zone 5b

Also from Arizona. Every year I add 3 to 4 inches of compost to my garden also I add rock dust it will really help your soil combining the rock dust and the compost and I put it on a drip system no overhead watering. Before I plant the tomato I sprinkle some Mycorrhizae fungi on the roots it helps build a good relationship with the roots of your tomato plants brings lots of nutrition to the plant. :D

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gixxerific
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Location: Wentzville, MO (Just West oF St. Louis) Zone 5B

dustyrivergardens wrote:Also from Arizona. Every year I add 3 to 4 inches of compost to my garden also I add rock dust it will really help your soil combining the rock dust and the compost and I put it on a drip system no overhead watering. Before I plant the tomato I sprinkle some Mycorrhizae fungi on the roots it helps build a good relationship with the roots of your tomato plants brings lots of nutrition to the plant. :D
That is a nice plan. Welcome to the forum. :mrgreen:

Dono

tedln
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Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 10:06 pm
Location: North Texas

Great ideas of how to do it right! Some years though, it doesn't matter how many "right" things you do; tomatoes don't want to grow or produce and they won't. I chalk it up to bad garden elves that year and start planning for the next.

Ted
I simply enjoy gardening!

dustyrivergardens
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Posts: 617
Joined: Sat Dec 03, 2011 1:32 pm
Location: Holbrook Az. zone 5b

You might want to have a soil test done.

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GardenRN
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Location: Chesterfield, Va

dustyrivergardens wrote:You might want to have a soil test done.
If you didn't know, a lot of big nurseries will do this for you for free....at least in my area. Probably the same in yours.
Jeff

USDA Zone 7a, Sunset Zone 32.

Failure is only a fact when you give up.

SusieF
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Joined: Sun Jan 08, 2012 7:59 pm
Location: Kentucky

The one thing I find that helps with almost all blights and other problems is a tablespoon of epison salts of each tomato hole. It makes the plants very green and growing. You can also use it later around the plant as well.
Hi you-all

richard64
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Posts: 17
Joined: Thu Sep 22, 2011 10:13 am
Location: N.E. Mississippi

SusieF wrote:The one thing I find that helps with almost all blights and other problems is a tablespoon of epison salts of each tomato hole. It makes the plants very green and growing. You can also use it later around the plant as well.
Yes, and I also dilute it and use it as a folier spray!

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