How to grow... Tomatoes
Rocket Growing Guides
Growing your own tomatoes is vegetable gardening at its most rewarding. It’s just so satisfying to pick off a ripe, juicy tomato from its vine and pop it straight into your mouth. You know it’s going to taste extra good simply because you grew it yourself and it doesn’t disappoint! Most of our Rocket Gardens tomato plants are likely to do better when grown in a greenhouse or conservatory, but they will also grow in a warm and sunny, sheltered spot in the garden.
- Planting Tips
- Growing advice
- Chef's Corner
The right site
Tomatoes need warmth, sun and shelter so are best grown in a greenhouse or conservatory. If you’d prefer to grow them outside, then choose a warm, sheltered and sunny spot, preferably up against a wall.
Can be grown in....
Planting tomatoes in fresh compost in either growbags (two to a bag) or large containers (20-25cm is perfect for one tomato plant) will give the best results. If you choose to plant them in a raised bed outside, then be sure to add plenty of compost.
How far apart?
The spacing is slightly dependent on the variety you choose, and we’ll advise you what’s best for your baby tomato plants when you receive them. As a general rule, though, tomatoes need a decent amount of space for their roots so it’s best to plant a single plant in a pot, two in a grow bag or in a raised bed with 50cm between each plant.
Looking after your plants....
Plant your tomato plants as soon as possible after they arrive into a 1.5 litre pot of good quality compost and allow them to grow in this for a few weeks indoors on a sunny window sill. Keep the compost moist but not waterlogged. They can then be transferred into their final growing container. Use bamboo canes to support the stems of cordon (upright) varieties (eg. Tigerella)
Feed them well
Water them well! Making sure your tomatoes are kept evenly and consistently watered will ensure they are happy plants. They don’t like drying out and then becoming waterlogged!
Make sure you add some kind of organic fertiliser to wherever you plant your tomatoes as they do like to be kept well fed.
Pinch off side shoots
Pinch off any side shoots regularly (cordon varieties) and remove any yellowing leaves.
Plant with marigolds
Grow some marigolds next to your tomatoes to keep away aphids
Here at Rocket Gardens we prefer to keep our tomatoes at room temperature rather than storing them in the fridge – you get better flavour from them that way.
Ways to cook
You can’t really beat a fresh tomato salad. Simply sliced, drizzled with a little extra virgin olive oil, seasoned with sea salt and served with a few torn up basil leaves.