How to Grow Tomatoes in a House

Overview

Growing tomatoes inside let you have fresh tomatoes all year. Tomato plants are a tender perennial, but in the United States they're grown as annuals because they die when frosts come. By growing them in your house, you avoid frost damage. Most people choose patio and dwarf tomato varieties for growing inside because they take up much less space. Smaller varieties grow 2 to 3 feet tall, while larger ones can grow vines more than 6 feet long. If you have the window space for a large vine, you might enjoy filling it with tomatoes, but even small spaces can accommodate growing tomatoes indoors.

Step 1

Select a south- or west-facing window for growing tomatoes inside your home. Tomatoes need five to eight hours of sunlight each day, and they can't get that amount if they're in a north- or east-facing window.

Step 2

Fill one or more small starter containers or pots with high-quality, fresh potting soil.

Step 3

Water the pots fully and allow to drain.

Step 4

Sprinkle one or two seeds into each pot if the pots are small. Larger pots can have four to six seeds added, but you may need to remove some of the plants later if the pots become too crowded.

Step 5

Sprinkle a fine layer of potting soil over the seeds, covering them to a depth of one-fourth to one-half an inch.

Step 6

Sprinkle water gently over the seeds. Add enough water to moisten the last layer of soil fully without moving the seeds.

Step 7

Place pots into the sunny window location.

Step 8

Check soil moisture levels at least twice each day while the seeds are germinating. Add water if the soil is not still moist. Depending upon the dryness of your house, you may need to water new tomato plantings twice daily until they've started sprouting.

Step 9

Transplant the tomato plants to larger pots as they grow, and provide a tomato cage or trellis in the pot to help support them as they become large and start setting fruit.

Things You'll Need

  • Tomato seeds
  • Containers or pots
  • Potting soil
  • Water

References

  • Colorado State University: Grow Your Own Tomatoes Indoors This Winter
  • University of Arizona: Vegetable Garden: Container Garden
Keywords: growing tomatoes indoors, in house tomatoes, grow container tomatoes

About this Author

Kathy Burns-Millyard has been a Web designer, developer, Internet consultant, photographer and prolific professional writer since 1997. Specializing in business, technology, environmental and health topics, her work has appeared in "Wireless Week" magazine, "Entrepreneur" magazine, "Computer User" magazine, and in hundreds of publications around the Web.