The Q&A Archives: Growing Tomato plants....

Question: Hello,
My wife and I live in Manassas,Virginia in a townhouse with a deck. We are having a hard time growing tomatos in a planter on the deck. Is there any tips or tricks that I can utilize so we can have fresh tomatos for lunch and dinner?


Terrell Crisler

Answer: Tomatoes need lots of sunshine and lots of room for root growth. Use a 5 gallon container for each plant and fill it with moistened potting soil (make sure there are plenty of drainage holes in the bottom of the container). After planting, water transplants well, then set up a wire cage or stakes to give them support as they grow. Allowing tomato plants to grow up rather than sprawling everywhere makes for a neater growing area and keeps the fruit off the ground and blemish-free.

Tomato plants grown in containers require more water and fertilizer than in-ground plantings. Water plants when the top three or four inches of soil are dry. Avoid wetting the foliage, and soak the soil until you see water draining through the bottom of the container. After the plants begin to set fruit, water them daily, especially on hot, windy days. Fertilize regularly; anything from Miracle-Gro to Osmocote to pelleted fertilizer is fine. Hope this helps!

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