If you want to grow luscious juicy tomatoes in your garden this summer, there are a few basic tips to insure the health and size of the fruit you grow. Starting tomatoes by seed takes much too long, so buy a plant from a local nursery. When shopping for plants look for a thick, sturdy stem above all else.
When you get your plant home, pinch off any flowers that might be budding, this will encourage the plant to keep growing. The longer the plant has to develop and the bigger it gets, the more fruit it will yield.
Before tossing the plant in the ground, there are a few amendments that can be made to the soil that will help the plant reach its maximum potential. Just like people, plants require certain supplemental minerals to be healthy. Tomato plants need a lot of calcium, and an easy way of supplying calcium is to toss a few egg shells in the bottom of hole in which you intend to plant. And if you happen to have any fish or fish bones, those can be added as well.
A few other additions that can be included are a handful of organic fertilizer, worm castings (a fancy way of saying worm poop), and a pinch of humic acid. Then toss in two regular aspirin tablets to build a healthy immune system.
Once all the amendments are in the bottom of the hole, mix everything together and cover with a thin layer of soil to protect the roots from direct contact. Then grab the hose and wet the hole, moist soil will make the transition from container to ground easier on the plant. Remember, this is a very stressful time for the plant, so be gentle.
Now you are ready to transplant. Trim off the bottom leaves and plant deep, the more stem below the surface, the more support it has to grow. Look closely and you will see tiny hairs on the stem, these will turn into roots when buried below the surface.
One last tip, really more of the gardener's golden rule, don't press on the soil! Give the soil around the plant one, and only one, gentle push. And that's it. There is no need to stomp or pat around the plant like you're playing the drums. Pressing soil impacts particles and impedes the flow of water to the plant.
Then water long and deep and sit back and watch your baby grow in the sun.