What is the secret to growing large, healthy tomatoes ?

Do not want to use commercial poisons, have a small backyard garden. Thanks so much.
  9 answers
  • Jo Ann Puri Jo Ann Puri on Jun 20, 2017
    We fed ours with magnesium...the plain kind you use in the bath. If you're dealing with bugs, put some dish soap and water in a spray bottle and spray directly on the bugs, leaves.

  • Janet Pizaro Janet Pizaro on Jun 20, 2017
    For insect controls use horticultural oils or organic sprays,for fertilizer use a organic food for tomato,for soil use a organic soils

  • Nancy Turner Nancy Turner on Jun 20, 2017
    I plant in good amended soil, I till in the cut grass and shredded leaves that I used for mulch the year before. I put down Preen Weed Preventer and Miracle Grow Extended Release fertilizer after I plant the new tomato plants. Other than putting down lawn clippings and shredded leaves for mulch, I don't do much other than make sure they get watered and an occasional sprinkling of used dried coffee grounds. Make sure to support your plants. I have great harvests with mine and tend to leave them alone other than making sure the branches stay in the support and renew the mulch as needed and fertilize according to the package directions if it needs to be renewed. I have not really had trouble with bugs or diseases. Rotate the place you plant them if you can.

  • Here, see if this link on growing organically helps any.

    Good luck!

  • Mamamia Mamamia on Jun 20, 2017
    I was told on this site that the horrible smell of tomato plants keeps the bugs away, I know I can't stand it. I grew huge tomatoes and not one of them had any bugs chomping on them.

  • Dfm Dfm on Jun 20, 2017
    f a di of start with healthy tomato plants-no black spots on leaves, no dried curly leaves with "dust" on them. nice thick stems. proper pruning is a must. if you look at how the plant is growing--the new "branches" form on the sides of the plants as they grow up wards. you want to take off the little branches that try to grow up wards from the crook of the branches. these are not very strong.

    the "large" part is determined by the type of tomato you plant. mortgage lifter is a type that may get up to 2 pound fruits. better boy can get large as well.

    since you have a small garden, i would suggest containers for this year. easier to move if not getting enough sun.

    find the black plastic mulch film. it's 4 ft wide and about 20 ft long i've gotten it at big box lumber stores. lay this down in an area that will get at least 6-8 hours of sun. the plastic will kill the grass under it- so you will be able to plant in ground next year. the tomato plants will need to be in a container that will hold a min. of 4-5 gallon of potting mix., they will also need support..a single 6 ft tall one for each plant will work. use what you have- ripped nylons old socks cut into strips to secure the vines to the stake.

    check the plants daily- twice a day in hot weather. water them if mother nature has not.

    to help the flowers set you may add a table spoon of epsom salt it adds magnesium to the soil. help set the blooms on the plants. as the fruits form add a handful of lime its calcium and helps to prevent blossom end rot.

    the plants will need a good fertilizer- if it's not in your potting mix already. one formulated for tomatoes.

    hope this helps...i dont know how to shorten this dialog box my computer has the speed of a dial up connection at this time.


  • Wanda Stephenson Wanda Stephenson on Jun 20, 2017
    Received a lot of great responses and recommendations, I look forward to getting more tomatoes....

  • Marilyn Marilyn on Jun 20, 2017
    Make sure that you trim off the suckers growing from the bottom of the plant.This is important because you want the plant to concentrate on sending energy to to the upper part of the plant. There should not have no foliage touching the soil because it becomes a way for some nasty bugs to attack your plants. Stake your plants early on. Feed your plants every 2 weeks. Enjoy some great tomatoes!! Marilyn Morrison

  • Nancy Turner Nancy Turner on Jun 20, 2017
    I don't, but I know a lot of people do cut off the suckling's, I never heard of cutting off just leaves unless they aren't healthy. My garden is at the top of a high hill and gets all the wind and circulation that the plants need without cutting them off. To me, if it is healthy and doing good on its own, leave it alone.