The Q&A Archives: Should I repot tomato plants

Question: I have 6 celebrity tomato plants in 14 inch pots. The plants are 2.5-3 feet tall and very bushy. The unripened fruit has been on since June. As I was watering today, I noticed the roots of the plants are on top of the potting soil. The soil was up to the top of the pot,so I can't really mulch over them. I have been watering for 15 minutes at a time 3 times a day. It is very, very hot here. I fertilize weekly with all purpose food. Some of the plants are getting yellow leaves. Are they in pots too small and should I repot or will they die?

Answer: The tomatoes will ripen when they get enough heat and sunshine, so make sure your plants are getting plenty of sun. Although the pots are small, the summer is nearly over and plant growth will slow from now on so I don't think they need to be repotted. Next time, though, start with larger pots for your tomatoes. Yellowing leaves at the bottom of the plant are normal for this time of year. Pull them off if they look unattractive. Once your plants get the sunshine they crave, the fruits should ripen.

Enjoy your harvest!

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