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Tomato: sowing, planting, growing, caring and harvesting

We are more used to seeing tomato plants than seedlings. But planting tomatoes is a breeze. You can grow different varieties, each one as tasty as the next. Don’t forget the old varieties with their unique and pronounced flavors. Sowing tomatoes is therefore within everyone’s reach and allows you to make real savings. Find out when and how to sow tomatoes.

Which seeds to choose?

In garden centers, you will find different varieties of tomato seeds that will make you happy. However, avoid choosing F1 hybrids, as they have been created by crossing varieties to obtain “beautiful” tomatoes with a long shelf life. Unlike other tomatoes, it is impossible to recover the seeds from the harvest, as they no longer reproduce and eventually degenerate. On the other hand, a non-hybrid variety can reproduce several times identically. It is best to obtain the seeds from an organic seed company.

How to grow tomatoes?

When to sow tomatoes: The ideal time to sow tomatoes is in warm March, but it depends on the region. In the south of France, sowing can begin as early as the end of February, while in the north it is better to wait until the end of March. It takes about two months from sowing to planting.

The sowing of tomatoes: Sowing is done in a box in a heated greenhouse or simply in a pot inside. The temperature must be constant and never fall below 18°C. The emergence is done in 5 days.

Exposure: in a sunny place.
Transplantation : Wait for the end of the ice saints in May to transplant the plants in the ground.

How to sow tomatoes?

  • The day before sowing, place the seeds in a tray with a little water to facilitate germination.
  • Put a drainage layer (gravel or clay balls) at the bottom of the boxes or pots.
  • Fill them with a quality potting soil, specially designed for seedlings.
  • Place the seeds 5 cm apart. You can use a seed drill to make it easier.
  • Sprinkle the potting soil over the seeds without burying them deeply. There should be no more than 3 mm of soil on the seeds.
  • Pack lightly by hand.
  • Very little water. If possible, spray only the surface of the soil.

The temperature in the house should be about 20°C and the room should be very bright. If this is not the case, emergence may be difficult.

The seedlings can be put in pots when the plant has 3 or 4 true leaves. After a month and a half, when the risk of frost has passed, put them in the open air to harden off before planting them in the ground two months after sowing. Water regularly, but never too much.

Harvesting tomatoes

Harvesting takes place in the summer and can extend into the fall, depending on weather conditions. Tomatoes are usually ripe 4 to 5 months after sowing. Tomatoes should be red. If they are not at the end of the season, they can ripen in a garage or on a windowsill with newspaper.

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