How to grow tomatoes in – Melbourne Hobart and similar climates.
When we look at how to grow tomatoes in cooler climates, the traditional ideas of planting tomatoes on Melbourne Cup Day often does not work. Its all a matter of how long the growing season will be. Tomatoes need warm soil and a long growing season and plenty of sun. We have a better method that helps with fast establishment of healthy tomato plants..
Plant Tomatoes Early and Plant Tomatoes Deep.
We have been planting tomatoes early and deep for years with great results, its easy, and it works. This technique works by planting seedlings into pots. Pots will have a higher soil temperature than the ground, and this helps them grow. So you can plant them earlier.
Planting deep encourages a better root system, and therefore better growth.
Why plant Early and Deep ?
Growing tomatoes in cooler climates such as Melbourne and Hobart can be difficult. Three factors are involved, and we look at them all.
- The main issue is that the weather is usually still cool in September and October. This means the soil is also to cool. This is also true for the cooler areas in the highlands around Sydney. All of this can be overcome using a simple technique.
- What we also want is a good healthy root system, and their is also a way of promoting this, and its by deep planting.
- A third factor is promoting healthy plant growth without to much foliage. The way to do this is related to fertiliser.
What we are doing is growing on the tomato seedling in a plastic pot, the soil temperature will be warmer, ( above 15 C) and this is a key factor to good early growth. So here is our 10 step guide to growing tomatoes in cool climates, and it works well with Cherry Tomatoes as well.
You will need :
- A large black plastic pot.
- Some potting mix.
- Blood and bone.
- Well rotted compost.
- Well rotted cow manure.
Before starting mix together 3 parts potting mix 1 part cow manure and some blood and bone.
Our 10 steps on How to grow tomatoes in cooler climates
- Select tallish tomato seedlings.
- Prune off the foliage from the lower 1/2 of the seedling.
- Remove any of the small shoots where the leaf joins the stem. Also remove any flowers that may be on the plant.
- Plant the seedling so that the lower half if below the top of the pot.
- Backfill around the plant.
- You will need to stake the plant at this stage.
- Water in with a liquid seaweed fertiliser.
- Place the pot where it receives good sun right through the day.
- Water as needed. Every second week water with a dilutes epsom salts solution.
- Every other week with liquid season. You can also water with a liquid ‘Vermicast Tea’
Once the soil warms up, you are ready to plant, what should be a very healthy tomato plant into the ground.
Now that you know How to grow tomatoes in cooler climates, you might like to read about tomato varieties.