Pinching Tomato - Knowledgebase Question

Douglas, WY
Question by marshar
February 2, 2001
When should I pinch a tomatoe seedling back I have heard after it has six leaves is that correct. Help please


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Answer from NGA
February 2, 2001

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Tomato seedlings are not normally pinched back. Some gardeners will however opt to prune tomatoes after they have been planted in the garden for a while. This might be done to increase air circulation or allow more light to reach the fruit if they are slow to ripen. It can also be done to control the size of the vine and reduce excess branching if it is growing too large and heavy for its supports. To prune or not to prune is a matter of personal preference, but it is not done until well after transplanting.

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