Like many other home-gardeners, I love growing my own tomatoes! Did you know tomatoes are the number one vegetable grown in a home vegetable garden?
They’re just so simple to grow; even a novice gardener can have a successful crop with minimal work!
But there’s a distinct difference between great tomatoes and mediocre ones. As soon as you take that first bite, you’ll know if you’ve hit the mark. Here are my tasty tomato-growing secrets if you wish to see a garden packed with the juiciest tomatoes you’ll have ever grown!
My 5 Secrets to Growing the Tastiest Tomatoes
Healthy plants come with healthy soil – it’s as simple as that. Generally, you would just incorporate compost in the top 2 inches of the soil and be done with. This won’t work for tomatoes; they are deep-rooted plants and heavy feeders.
To grow the best tomatoes, amend the top 7 to 8 inches of soil with nutrient-rich compost. I like using Nature’s Care Organic & Natural Soil.
Consider Raised Beds or Planters
If your garden soil isn’t well-drained, consider a raised bed or planter for your growing tomatoes. With a raised bed, there won’t be any risks of standing water that could cause diseases in the tomato plants. You’ll also be able to use a good quality potting mix in the bed for even better yields.
Since I only planted 3 tomato plants this season we have ours in giant planters on our front porch. But, I really like some of the raised garden beds available online. I really like this tiered wooden garden bed. I was able to only purchase one tomato cage this season to support vertical growth.
Tomatoes love a good deep morning watering, especially during hot spells and hot summer days! Consistent watering will build a stronger root system so that the plants can better access the nutrients in the soil. Garden tomatoes typically require 1-2 inches of water a week.
Water the plants as soon as the top 2 inches of soil dry out. If you let your soul stay dry for too long it can cause the tomatoes to crack, dry out, and/or burn off.
I keep a milk jug near our front door so that I remember to fill it up and water our tomato plants every day. It is best to water early in the morning. We have our tomatoes planted on our front porch so that they get amazing sunlight, are easy to get to (for pruning, picking, and watering), and so that they won’t be bothered by the dogs.
Feed them Coffee!
You all know I am a huge coffee drinker – and so are my houseplants! 😉 Whelp! So are my tomato plants!
You can use diluted leftover drip coffee or your leftover coffee grounds.
Both diluted coffee and coffee grounds are a strong source of nitrogen, which helps plants develop a healthy root system and aids in the production of chlorophyll.
Coffee grounds are very high in nitrogen and are a natural fertilizer and pest deterrent! You can simply water your plants with room temperature diluted drip coffee or you can scatter your used coffee grounds in the soil around the base of your tomato plant.
Maintain Good Soil pH
If you’re a gardener, it’s high time you learned about the soil pH. To grow the best tomatoes, you need a pH value between 6 and 6.5. Anything that’s outside this range will diminish the plant’s ability to absorb the soil’s nutrients. It is super helpful to have a soil testing kit at home to keep a check on the pH level.
This is the one I use for my houseplants and for my tomatoes. It is inexpensive and easy to use.