How to Grow Tomatoes on a Patio


If you love the taste of fresh tomatoes but don't grow your own because your outdoor space is limited to a patio, take heart. Tomatoes can be grown on a patio with just as much success as they can in a garden. On a patio, tomatoes are grown as a container plant. Container planting gives you full control over how much sun, shade and water your tomato plant receives, which has a direct effect on your plant's health. Use any type of tomato plant in a container; they all require the same planting techniques and care.

Step 1

Select a 5-gallon container that is at least 12 inches wide. Make sure the container has drainage holes in the bottom.

Step 2

Cut a piece of mesh screen to fit in the bottom of your container. This will prevent dirt from washing out through the drainage holes and garden pests from entering the soil.

Step 3

Put a 1-inch layer of stones in the bottom of your container, on top of the screen.

Step 4

Fill your container with potting soil formulate for vegetable plants, and make a small valley in the center where you will put your tomato seedling.

Step 5

Remove your seedling from its pot, place it in your large container, and cover the root ball with soil. Pack the soil down tight.

Step 6

Water your tomato plant until the soil is moist, but not completely saturated. If you see areas in the pot where the soil has sunken down, add more soil and pack it down.

Step 7

Insert a tomato cage into the pot, with your tomato plant is centered in the middle of the cage.

Step 8

Place your container in a sunny area of your patio, and preferably in a spot where it is shielded from harsh winds.

Step 9

Check the soil of your tomato plant daily, to make sure the soil does not dried out. Tomato plants need moist, well-drained soil.

Tips and Warnings

  • If your tomato plant soil is too wet, or does not have good drainage, your plant may suffer root rot.

Things You'll Need

  • 5-gallon container
  • Mesh screen
  • Small stones
  • Potting soil
  • Tomato seedling
  • Tomato cage


  • American Homeowner's Association: Grow Tomatoes Anywhere
  • University of Arizona Extension: Vegetable Garden: Container Garden
  • Texas A&M University Extension: Vegetable Gardening In Containers
Keywords: patio tomato plant, patio container tomato, tomato plant on patio

About this Author

A freelance writer for more than 12 years, Traci Vandermark has written extensively on health and fitness topics. She is a student of health, fitness and nutrition at the International Institute Of Holistic Healing, certified by the American Association of Nutritional Consultants. Her articles have appeared in Catskill Country Magazine, The Lookout Magazine, Capper's, Birds and Blooms and Country Discoveries, to name a few.