Many people have found a hobby out of organic tomato gardening. Since this crop is cultivated naturally and without using chemical-based fertilizers and pesticides, it costs higher than regular tomatoes.
Here are 6 tips to help you get started:
Location – Plenty of sun is vital for organic tomato gardening and it needs around 8 to 12 hours of sun exposure for proper plant growth, and to keep the roots and soil warm. For indoor organic tomato plants, it is best to take them out during the day to let them absorb sunlight and heat.
Temperature – Soil temperature should be at least 55 degrees Fahrenheit during day time is favorable for organic tomato plants. If it gets cooler at night time, you may need to cover your tomato plants with buckets or sheets overnight. Tomato plants don’t do well during very hot summers especially when temperatures rise above 90 degrees. You can provide shade to your tomatoes to block the sun’s burning rays during the day.
Watering – Regular watering is important for organic tomato gardening; or else rot diseases and sporadic growth of the fruit might occur. You need to water the tomato plants twice a week, with the soil soaked within 6 to 8 inches. Water your tomato plants more often if the temperature becomes extreme.
Fertilizer – Natural organic fertilizers are essential for organic tomato gardening due to their lack of chemical ingredients. Manure, fish emulsion, seaweed and composted grass/weed clippings are the best organic fertilizers for organic tomatoes due to their high nitrogen content and micronutrients.
Pest control – Natural enemies of your tomatoes’ pests can be used to eradicate them. You can introduce birds, lizards, ladybugs and frogs into your garden since they are the natural enemies of caterpillars and aphids that eat up your tomato plants. It’s also advisable to stake your plants to keep them off the ground that is home to worms and insects.
Mulching – You can use black plastic around the tomato plants to prevent weed growth and to keep the soil warm. It also directs the water to the plants’ roots.
Organic tomato gardening can be a great hobby and source of income at the same time. There’s no need to bust your wallet just to have a taste of this coveted fruit because you’ll enjoy it for free once your garden is thriving with produce.