The Q&A Archives: Tomatoes in Pots in the City

Question: I live in NYC and want to buy tomatoes at the HD this weekend.What variety do you suggest for the city.I will have to plant in pots.What size pots should I use. Is planting marigolds in the same pot a myth/helpful.Anything you could help me with would be great.I would like 3-5 varieties..and perhaps some other veggies that will do well in pots in the city.

Answer: Nearly any vegetable will adapt to growing in a container. Exceptions might be pumpkins, squash and melons because they need lots of room to sprawl. For tomatoes, choose 5-gallon pots (3-gallon for smaller cherry, grape or patio type tomatoes). Make sure the containers have adequate drainage holes on the bottom and fill the containers with potting soil. Some varieties to consider include:
Cherry: Early Cherry, Fruity Orange, Sarah?s Goldstar Cherry, Sungold, sunsugar, Supersweet 100.

Grape tomatoes: Jubilee, Juliet, Sugary.

Extra Early: Cosmonaut Volkove, Currant, Daybreak, Early Cascade, Gold Rush,
Early Girl, Gold Dust, Lemon Boy, Sunrise, Taxi.

Main Season: Better Boy, Big Beef, Big Boy, Celebrity, Jet Star, Moneymaker, Mountain Fresh, Mountain Spring, Palisade, sunbeam, Sunrise, Supersonic and Ultra Sweet.

Paste tomates: Amish Paste, Classica, La Roma, La Rosa.

If you are planting on a balcony you probably won't have the standard insect and disease problems, but you could plant marigolds as a companion if you wish. I generally just plant a single tomato plant per container and then group smaller containers of herbs and flowers around them. They look attractive and the flowers do attract bees, which will help with pollination.

Enjoy your garden!

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