Can You Grow Tomato Plants in Big Pots?


There is nothing better than picking your own tomatoes straight from the vine. When they are left on the vine to ripen, the flavor is far superior to anything you will buy in the grocery store. So what happens if you want to grow your own tomatoes but do not have the room in your yard? Luckily, there is a solution. You can use a large pot to grow tomato plants. Buy the seeds or seedlings toward the end of winter or the beginning of spring.

Types of Tomatoes

Some varieties of tomatoes grow particularly well in pots. You can even choose specialized dwarf tomato varieties, since they are designed to take up less space. Some of the best dwarf or container tomato plants are the cherry gold, red robin, small fry and the tiny Tim. These produce quickly, generally between 45 and 70 days. If you decide against a dwarf plant, choose the determinate type of tomato, as these varieties will grow only to a predetermined size and will not require caging or staking as with indeterminate types. Two small, or cherry tomato, indeterminate tomato plants are the super sweet and the large red cherry. These will require support of the vine, but they still make an excellent potted tomato plant.

Planting Seeds

Start your tomato plant seeds indoors in small containers or peat pellets that expand when water is added. Push the seeds gently into the soil or peat and cover. Keep them moist and in a warm and sunny location. When they germinate, keep the soil moist but not too wet and boggy. After the seedlings are 1 or 2 inches, transplant them into your large outdoor pot.

Transplanting Seedlings

Plant the seedlings in a large container or pot that has a drainage hole or holes in the bottom so the soil will not stay soggy at the bottom. Each tomato plant requires approximately a gallon-size container, so if you want more than one plant per pot, get a proportionately bigger pot. Place the pot in an area that receives at least six hours of direct sunlight per day. Dig a small hole into the soil and plant the seedling, gently tamping down the soil around the plant to eliminate air pockets. Water the seedlings and keep them moist, especially in hot climates.

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About this Author

Gemma Argent writes articles and essays for Associated Content, HART, Horizon Magazine, and Canada. She writes fiction for Aria Kalsan and sci-fi and essays for Writing Edge magazine. She has bachelor's degrees from the University of Nevada, Reno, in environmental resources and archaeology and has done graduate coursework from the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, in water resources and writing.

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