How to Grow Tomatoes

A bundle of ripe red tomatoes hanging on vine

Growing your own tomatoes is fun, easy and a great way to not only save money, but also incorporate fresh, organic food into your kitchen. We’ll show you how to grow beautiful, juicy tomatoes in your own garden or container.

Skill Level: Beginner
Time:
  1. Step 1 Plan and Prepare Soil

    Person wearing gardening gloves holding a handful of plant soil

    When learning how to plant tomatoes, you’ll find that tomatoes crave sunlight, so choose a sunny spot to plant them. A nutrient-rich soil with good drainage is essential, so add some garden soil on top of some regular soil in your garden or container before planting. If you’re growing tomatoes in pots, choose one that is at least 18 to 24 inches wide.

  2. Step 2 Plant Seeds or Start from Transplant

    Small sprouts of plants growing in container

    If planting in-ground, plant about 2 feet apart. Place your stakes early to avoid root damage later on. Plant your seeds deep in the soil to ensure a good strong plant. If planting in a container, ensure you only have one plant per container. Place the pot in a sunny spot with 6 to 8 hours of full sun per day.

  3. Step 3 Water and Care While It Grows

    Brown pot holding health tomato plant with ripe tomatoes on it

    Tomato plant care is essential for a healthy plant. Water generously for the first few days and then add about 2 inches per week throughout the growing season in the early morning. Remember, container soil dries out more quickly so check it daily. Try to avoid watering tomatoes late in the day. As the plants grow, trim all the lower leaves off the bottom 12 inches of the stem. This keeps diseases from spreading from the soil to foliage and harming your plant.

  4. Step 4 Harvest and Enjoy

    Freshly picked tomatoes sitting in a basket

    Once your tomatoes have ripened, pick them, give them a good rinse and enjoy! Ripe tomatoes are completely coloured and should be firm when you squeeze them. Deciding when to harvest tomatoes is up to you: you can pick them when completely ripe or a bit early as they ripen even after being picked. Store near-ripe tomatoes in a warm spot, and after they ripen, switch to a cool spot. Avoid the fridge, however, as the cold temperatures can dilute the taste.    

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