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Summer Planting … Fall Tomatoes!

Each spring you plant tomato transplants that bring you a bountiful harvest come June. You might think once you’ve harvested those fresh tomatoes that you’ll be back to buying them at grocery store for the rest of the year. Not so! Here in Dallas we have TWO tomato growing seasons! You can plant again in late-June through mid-July for a fall harvest. Tomatoes are arriving now to plant through mid-July.

Tomatoes at NHG
Tomatoes harvested from NHG’s vegetable display garden.

Here are a few key tips to growing your best harvest:

Timing: you should plant 4-inch transplants late-June through mid-July. Planting too late or too early can result in poor fruit set or failure to ripen.

Water: Consistent moisture is crucial to proper fruit development. Tomatoes don’t like to dry out between waterings. Too little water can result in poor fruit set or fruit dropping, while times of heavy watering can result in cracked tomatoes. The best recipe for tomato success is to deliver consistent amounts of water regularly. Be sure to mulch your plants to help retain soil moisture.

VEcompost061Soil: As with everything you plant, nutrient rich soil with organic matter is the cornerstone of a healthy garden. If you are growing tomatoes in large containers, our NHG Premium Organic Potting Mix is perfect. Growing in raised beds or directly in the ground? A mix of Vital Earth Compost, Soil Menders Topsoil, Soil Menders Garden Soil & Food, and a bit of expanded shale will create a healthy soil mix for your tomato plants. Throw in a bit of greensand to help with proper water retention in the soil.

NHG Fertilizer Herb FoodFertilization: Keep it simple. Feed tomato transplants with a granular fertilizer, such as NHG Organic Herb & Veggie Food or Espoma Tomato-tone, at planting time. Then begin to fertilize again once small fruit have started to develop. You can side dress your plants every other week with a granular feed, or feed weekly with a liquid feed such as Hasta Gro.

Selection: The hardest part? Choosing which tomato varieties to grow! With so many delicious varieties, how do you choose which are best for you?  First, evaluate how much space you have available. Will you grow in large containers, raised beds or in the ground? Determinate varieties fruit all at once tend to have a more compact growth habit; this makes them best suited for large containers, small raised beds or garden beds. If you have more space available, indeterminate varieties grow large vines and produce over a longer period of time.

Tycoon99
‘Tycoon’ tomatoes ripening on the vine in our vegetable display garden.

We have a great selection of fall tomato transplants!

Take a look at our Tomato Project List.

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