How to Grow Tumbling Tomatoes


According to Mississippi State University, more and more urban dwellers are joining the trend of growing their own produce. One of the most popular plants to grow is the tomato. Hybrid varieties, such as tumbling tom tomatoes, make it easy to grow tomatoes in small containers and hanging baskets. According to Parks Seeds, tumbling tomatoes have a weeping habit, and may dangle up to two feet over the side of a hanging basket. Gardeners can grow these cherry-sized tomatoes on patios, window boxes or in hanging baskets and harvest them for use in the kitchen.

Step 1

Start tumbling tom tomato seeds indoors up to five weeks before the last yearly frost date. Poke a pin hole in the bottoms of the egg cups of an egg crate. Fill the crate with potting soil. Use a pencil to hollow out a planting pocket twice as deep as the seed's diameter. Place the seed in the planting pocket and cover it with soil. Water until the soil is as damp as a wrung-out sponge. Place plastic over the tray and put it on a seed warming mat. Place the tray and seed warming mat under a grow light.

Step 2

Fill a four-inch peat pot with peat moss. Hollow out a hole that is larger than the tomato sprout's root ball. Move the tomato seedlings from the egg tray to the four-inch peat pots. Water until the soil is as damp as a wrung-out sponge. Place the containers under the grow light. Continue to grow the tumbling tom tomatoes under the grow light until they outgrow their four-inch container, or until after the last yearly frost date.

Step 3

Harden off the tomatoes by moving them outdoors into the shade during daylight hours after the last yearly frost date.

Step 4

Mix a soilless potting mix that consists of one part vermiculite, one part peat moss and one part compost. Cover the drainage hole over the hanging basket with a pottery shard and fill the basket with the soilless mix.

Step 5

Hollow out a planting hole for your tumbling tom tomato that is twice as wide as the root ball. Place the tomato in the hole and cover the root ball with the soilless mix. Pat the soil to dislodge any air bubbles and water until the soil is as damp as a wrung-out sponge.

Step 6

Select a location for your hanging basket that receives at least six hours of sunlight daily. Anchor the hanging basket to this location using a heavy duty hardware hook with a screw back. Affix the hook in a location that can hold at least 50 pounds of weight.

Step 7

Check the plant's soil at least two times daily and water any time the plant appears to be drying out. The soil should remain as damp as a wrung-out sponge. Hanging baskets are more prone to drying. The rate at which your tumbling tom will dry out is dependent on the type of container that you use, the soil mix and the location in which you hang the plant.

Things You'll Need

  • Egg crate
  • Pin
  • Pencil
  • Peat moss
  • Plastic wrap
  • Grow light
  • Seed warming mat
  • 4-inch peat pot
  • Hanging basket
  • Pottery shard
  • Compost
  • Vermiculite
  • Screw back hook
  • Watering can
  • Balanced, liquid (10-10-10) fertilizer


  • University of Minnesota Extension: Starting Seeds Indoors
  • Mississippi State University Extension: Urban vegetable gardens look to be 'Sweet 'n' Neat'
  • Kansas State University: Growing Vegetables in Pots

Who Can Help

  • Mississippi State University Extension: Interest in patio gardens spreads
  • Park Seed: Pretty to Look at AND Good to Eat!
Keywords: tumbling tom tomatoes, container vegetables, growing vegetables

About this Author

Tracy S. Morris has been a freelance writer since 2000. She has published two novels and numerous online articles. Her work has appeared in national magazines and newspapers, including "Ferrets," "CatFancy," "Lexington Herald Leader" and "The Tulsa World."