Summer Tomato To Do’s For Fall Bounty
Our tomato season was cut short thanks to the heat wave we’ve suffered. Usually, we can produce up until Fourth of July but not this year. Once it is this hot, tomatoes won’t set fruit any longer. The best we can do is keep an eye on any fruit already set and take care of it until it is ready to pick. Then, we can prepare for the fall tomato season. Meg Tapp with The Garden Club of Houston taught a fall tomato class for Urban Harvest (live and in person!) on Saturday, July 16, 2022.
Class participants were able to learn all about choosing which type of tomato to grow, preparing the beds or pots, planting, and maintaining through production of your fall/winter crop. Plus, she’ll gave tips and tricks for a successful season.
- When starting seeds, you can cover with plastic wrap to help keep in the moisture. You don’t need to worry about light at this stage.
- Once sprouts appear, remove the wrap and put the pots under a grow light.
- A grow light set up can be as simple as a plant light bulb from the hardware store in a clamp-on can light.
- Once they are up and growing, keep them moist but not soggy.
- Choose the strongest one in each pot and cut off the others. The strong one is your one and only now.
Start in July and be ready to plant go into the ground or outside in a pot during our fall tomato planting time in August. If you are new to growing tomatoes or you’re working with a small space, determinate tomatoes are better for your situation. On the seed pack, it will either say “indeterminate” or “determinate” – so read carefully before you buy.
If you did not start your tomatoes from transplants, head to the nearest nursery for the largest, healthiest plants you can find for a great start in growing your Fall tomatoes.
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Although I usually start my tomatoes by seed, propagation from cuttings from an existing plant will also work especially if you have a hybrid variety that you would like to grow in the fall and you don’t have more any packaged seeds. I have found however that the transplants from seed are usually stronger than those from propagation.