Water Walls for Tomatoes: Using water walls in my Utah Garden..........

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Water Walls for Tomatoes

By Joannabanana
March 7, 2014

Cool ambient soil temperatures will affect plant growth, flower bud formation, and taste. Water walls will insulate against cold temperatures and help increase your harvest yields.

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Name: Paul
Utah (Zone 5b)
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Paul2032
Mar 7, 2014 6:21 AM CST
My use of water walls is a little different than the excellent article written by Joannabanana. Most years here in Utah we start getting spring like weather and nice days in mid- March and I get an urge to plant some tomatoes, Problem is that last reliable frost date is mid-May so I get out my water walls and buy some tomato plants. I plant the tomatoes and water in with warm water with a little fertilizer. Then I put a bucket or nursery pot over the plant and put the water wall over the container. I then use a 2 gallon water can and fill the wall using very warm water from the house. This is a good 2 person job. When the wall is full of water carefully remove the container. I leave the walls on for about 2 months. Sometimes we have a frost and I have had ice in the wall but the tomato was fine. Sometimes the plant grows out of the top of the wall and the top freezes but the lower portion and root system are fine. Depending on the weather I remove the walls in the first part of May, put on my tomato cages which are covered with clear plastic. The plastic provides a warm enviroment and then it is removed it in early June when it is dependably warm. By now plants have extensive root systems and plants are often in bloom. I shake the tomato cages to encourage pollination. Then I patiently wait for the first vine-ripe tomato Hurray! Lovey dubby Thumbs up
Thumb of 2014-03-07/Paul2032/7aa13d Tomato plants in early summer


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Paul Smith Pleasant Grove, Utah
[Last edited by Paul2032 - Mar 7, 2014 9:57 AM (+)]
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Name: Joanne
Calgary, AB Canada (Zone 3a)
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Joannabanana
Mar 7, 2014 7:26 AM CST
They certainly do help get a early start. The first year, I had removed them in in June , but find that for our area it is best to leave them in place the entire growing season. They really help in later season to deep water.
Name: Paul
Utah (Zone 5b)
Grandchildren are my greatest joy.
Charter ATP Member Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Annuals Echinacea Vegetable Grower Hybridizer
Tomato Heads Garden Photography Birds Cut Flowers Foliage Fan Plays in the sandbox
Image
Paul2032
Mar 7, 2014 7:51 AM CST
We have a relatively long growing season and can get near 100 degrees in July-August so that is the reason I remove them. While the walls are on the plants only require very occasional watering. Thanks for the great article. I went and looked at tomatoes a few days ago......
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Paul Smith Pleasant Grove, Utah
Name: Cinda
Indiana Zone 5b
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gardengus
Mar 7, 2014 5:39 PM CST
I have used these in the past when I lived in Michigan , they were nice and easy , but tomatoes did not develop a nice strong stem . I had to be very careful not to break the main stem when removing the wall of water. I only used them a couple years .
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Name: Critter (Jill)
MD (Zone 6b)
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critterologist
Mar 7, 2014 7:38 PM CST
It never occurred to me to FOLD THEM DOWN and leave them in place!

Thank You!
I'm learning to dance in the rain. Thank you, Sally & Chris.
Name: Joanne
Calgary, AB Canada (Zone 3a)
I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Garden Ideas: Master Level Region: Canadian Charter ATP Member Seed Starter Roses
Plant Lover: Loves 'em all! Annuals Container Gardener Vegetable Grower Winter Sowing Enjoys or suffers cold winters
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Joannabanana
Mar 8, 2014 5:31 PM CST
It didn't occur to me either. My neighbour is who thought that up. Whistling
Name: Critter (Jill)
MD (Zone 6b)
We're all learners, doers, teachers
Charter ATP Member Region: Maryland Bulbs Amaryllis Tropicals Cottage Gardener
Critters Allowed Birds Butterflies Hummingbirder Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Bee Lover
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critterologist
Mar 8, 2014 8:35 PM CST
Kudos to your neighbor, then! Not like it's impossible to remove it after summer warms up, but as you said, it'll help if you're watering with a hose (mostly I use soaker hoses for bottom watering)... I'm also thinking it'll keep bunnies away from the base of the plant, maybe kinda sorta. LOL
I'm learning to dance in the rain. Thank you, Sally & Chris.

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