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Growing Tomato

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
    S P P P            

(Best months for growing Tomato in USA - Zone 5a regions)

S = Plant undercover in seed trays P = Sow seed

  • Grow in seed trays, and plant out in 4-6 weeks. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 61°F and 95°F. (Show °C/cm)
  • Space plants: 16 - 24 inches apart
  • Harvest in 8-17 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Asparagus, Chervil,Carrot, Celery, Chives, Parsley, Marigold, Basil
  • Avoid growing close to: Rosemary, Potatoes, Fennel, Cucumber
  • a)  Seedlings
  • b) 6 weeks old
  • c) Tomato Roma (acid free)


There is nothing like the taste of a freshly picked tomato, warm from the sunshine. In the smallest of gardens or even an apartment with a window-box, it is worth growing at least one tomato plant for the pleasure it will give you. They will grow in pots, troughs or even hanging baskets.

Tomatoes should be grown in shelter or under cover in cool climates.

Tomatoes need feeding. In a garden bed, compost and mulching will produce a crop from one or two plants. In containers, use some suitable long term fertiliser pellets or feed regularly when you water. Feeding also improves the flavour of the fruit.

When you plant out, put the seedlings in a deep holes, up to the top set of leaves. The covered stems will put out extra roots and you will have a stronger, healthier plant.

There are many different varieties of tomatoes but they all have one of two growth habits.


Compact bush growth, stops at a specific height and useful for containers. If left without supporting stakes, they will form a dense carpet which excludes weeds and keeps the soil cool and damp.


Will continue growing a main stem, or vine until stopped by frost. The majority of heirloom tomatoes are indeterminate.

Both types need stakes to give them some support otherwise they will sprawl across the garden.

Varieties include Acid-free, Bush, Tall, Cherry, Yellow and many others.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Tomato

Use in sauces, with fried meals, in sandwiches. Can be frozen whole or in pieces.

Your comments and tips

17 Oct 19, lindsayshand (New Zealand - temperate climate)
what can i use to set my tomatoes to fruit
16 Oct 19, barry rowcliffe (Australia - cool/mountain climate)
can you give some information on coral tree tomato, I bought a plant today but their is no information on .thanks barry.
06 Oct 19, Rob (Australia - tropical climate)
Please suggest best tomatoes to grow in Cairns..Thanks
07 Oct 19, Anon (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
It really comes down to what kind of tomatoes you want to eat. Do you want big toms, medium or small, long or fat. A bushy variety or a tall growing one. Look up a seed selling website like Boondie Seeds and learn about the different kinds. Ask at your nursery or Bunnings. I like a medium size so that when making a sandwich I use the whole tomato. I grow Manapal and I also grow cherry tomatoes. Seedling just pop up in the garden from year to year from ones that fall on the ground. Gardening is about trying things and working out what works for you. Do some research on how to grow them.
22 Sep 19, Ray Ponting (Australia - arid climate)
I’m in Kalgoorlie WA and sun is the problem I have a garden bed north south with a corrugated iron fence on the west side. Should I use shade cloth
23 Sep 19, Anon (Australia - arid climate)
Probably 30 or 50% shade cloth.
25 Sep 19, (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
I did post here move the garden away from the west fence. It will cut down the hours of sunlight required to grow most things.
19 Sep 19, Wendy Perry (New Zealand - cool/mountain climate)
Please what is a good all rounder tomato to grow in a Glass house in Alexandra, Central Otago? Thank you.
25 Sep 19, Anon (New Zealand - sub-tropical climate)
Go to a nz seed selling website and compare different tomato types. Then pick one or two and try them. Or go to Bunnings or a nursery and ask.
14 Sep 19, Allan Clarke (Australia - temperate climate)
If you freeze tomatoes, then thaw them out, they go all soggy, I believe.
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This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.
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