growing tomatoes in so cal - Knowledgebase Question

Long Beach, Ca
Question by mitzyw
March 8, 2010
can i plant tomatoes in the same place i did last season? how do i prepare the soil & when do i plant? i'm a novice in Long Beach, CA Thanks!

Answer from NGA
March 8, 2010


We generally suggest you rotate your vegetables to different parts of the garden each year but if last year's tomatoes were insect and disease free, you can get away with planting them in the same spot as last year. You can enrich your soil over a period of years and end up with rich garden loam if you add organic matter. Start this spring by removing all vegetation from the area and spreading 4-5 inches of organic matter over the vegetable bed. You can use compost, aged manure (fresh manure can be too hot and might contain weed seeds), shredded leaves or whatever organic matter is readily available in your local area. Dig or till this organic matter into the soil - 8-10 inches deep. Plant your veggies and mulch over the bare soil between the plants with additional organic matter. A 2-3 inch layer will help suppress weeds and slow water evaporation. At the end of the season dig the organic matter into the soil and add a fresh layer. Repeat this process annually and you'll end up with rich garden loam - and a spectacular vegetable garden. Hope you have a bountiful harvest!

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