Tips On Where To Plant A Tomato Garden In Your Yard
Not only do tomatoes taste amazing, but the joy of growing them is also very rewarding. But before you can pat yourself on the back for having a healthy tomato crop you have to know where to plant a tomato garden and then prepare the soil.
Where you grow your tomatoes is a critical part of gardening. If you need tomato seeds I HIGHLY recommend buying them here.
Why? Because the plants need plenty of sunlight.
Where to Plant a Tomato Garden
Look around your yard throughout the day. Your tomatoes will need a minimum of six hours of sunlight each day to produce healthy tomatoes.
What part of your yard has the most sunlight? Is it the backyard, side yard or front yard?
Don’t pick an area with a lot of trees that throw shade over your garden. You’ll want to make sure the tomatoes get plenty of sunlight to grow big and strong.
The location can make a difference in how well your tomatoes grow, but don’t let it consume you. Simply look around your yard for a place that isn’t in the shade and that gets a fair amount of sun.
Mark that spot for your tomato garden and start prepping the soil for your tomato plants and the tomato companion plants.
pH Preparation Of The Soil
Tomatoes don’t do very well in soggy soil so a sunny, well-drained area, is always best.
Soil preparation is equally important as a location. Tomatoes do best in soil that rates 6.0-6.8 on the pH scale.
pH measures the soil acidity or alkalinity, with 7.0 being neutral.
Tomato plants excel in their growth when planted in soil that leans more on the acidic side.
Actually, most vegetables grow best in this type of environment.
You can check the pH level yourself using an inexpensive pH testing. You will find these kits at Amazon or most big box stores for fairly inexpensive. The one we linked here is under $10.
How Often Do You Test Soil pH Level?
It’s best to test the soil every three to five years.
If your soil pH is to low (too acidic), then you will need to add lime to bring the soil back to the normal or 7.0 level.
If the soil is high in alkalinity, then you will need to add sulfur to lower the pH level.
Preparing The Soil’s Texture
Preparing your soil goes beyond pH preparation.
Whether you have heavy, hard clay types of soil, or light sandy soils, there are different things you can do to improve your planting locations.
If your soil is too hard, then it’s best to use a rototiller, metal rake, or hoe to loosen up the area.
Tomato roots need to breathe and expand to grow deep into your garden.
Also, by working the ground with these tools, you will eliminate some unwanted grass or weeds.
If the sand is too sandy, then it’s necessary to add some sort of organic matter to establish proper growth. By adding leaves, cut grass, or compost, you will your plants a continuous supply of moisture all season long, and it also helps your plants to breathe.
Preparing The Soil With Fertilizer
Adding fertilizer to the soil is also important before you plant, to ensure your plants get off to a good start. After you till the area, add a mild fertilizer like 5-10-10 and work it in the soil with a metal rake.
This will provide adequate portions of nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium.
Now that you’ve prepared the soil, you’re ready to plant your tomatoes.
How Far Apart Do You Plant Tomatoes?
Be sure to place your plants approximately 18 inches apart.
Check out our guide to growing tomato plants from seed.
You’ll want to place a metal cage around your plants. Caging your plants will provide excellent stability as your plants begin to grow up and through the openings of the cage.
Hopefully, you will enjoy the rewarding hobby of growing your own tomatoes. Remember, if you locate the right spot and prepare the soil as explained, you should have excellent results.
You might just enjoy growing tomatoes as much as we do. We promise you’ll love the way your own tomatoes taste much more than the store-bought types.
Be sure to grow some cherry tomatoes so you can make this excellent corn cherry tomato salad this summer.
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