Nip these tomato-planting myths in the bud

Homegrown tomatoes fresh off the vine are full of flavor and bring out the best of summer. Tomatoes are grown in many backyard gardens, and no other crop has as many home remedies for success. Neighbors, friends and, of course, the internet are full of tips. Some are spot-on, while others have no benefits or could even slow your harvest. Tomatoes are grown from a transplant. One internet tip that does not cut the muster is transplant size. Many home remedy sites suggest buying a bigger transplant so you harvest…

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Thick Stems On Your Seedlings

Ever wondered how commercial seedling providers get these beautiful, stalky, plants with thick stems to market? It’s called the cold treatment and has been going on at commercial greenhouses for over 30 years. Here’s how they do it. This was taken out of the book “Greenhouse Tomatoes, Lettuce & Cucumbers” by S.H. Wittwer & S. Honma where they recommend ‘Cold Treatment’ for hardening off tomato seedlings. The cold treatment should be started just as the first true leaves emerge, whether the seedlings are still in seed rows or pricked-off. Air…

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How To Prevent Late Blight On Tomatoes

LATE blight, a disease that strikes tomatoes and potatoes, can quickly ruin an entire crop — and provide a source of infection for other plants. It is critical that gardeners understand that late blight is not like other tomato and potato diseases. Many other diseases affect these crops in home gardeners, but most of them only affect leaves or cause limited damage to fruit, and while they may reduce the harvest, they generally don’t cause a total loss. Furthermore, because most pathogens are not readily dispersed by wind, their effects…

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20 Common Tomato Plant Problems and How to Fix Them

If you’re one of the three million people who planted a home garden this year, you’re most likely growing tomatoes. Nine out of 10 gardeners grow tomatoes, and that number would be 10 out of 10 if the holdouts would taste a fresh garden tomato and compare it to a grocery store purchase. Nothing beats the taste of a fresh home-grown tomato! Many gardeners who grow tomatoes, however, are frustrated with the progress of their plants. The plant may not set fruit. Or your tomatoes may ripen, but have ugly, spongy black spots at…

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How to Grow Tomatoes from Cuttings

Did you know that a new tomato plant can be grown from just a snip off of a mature tomato plant? The cells within the stems of tomato plants are capable of developing roots. Amazing, right? This is exciting news for you tomato lovers out there who have wished you could make one particular plant produce even more. This is also good news for the frugal gardeners who would like to purchase one plant and enjoy a double harvest in the same season. While starting a new tomato plant from…

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Hybrid vs. GMO vs. Heirloom

There is a lot of confusion out there regarding hybrid vs. GMO vs. heirloom plants, especially when it comes to tomatoes. What’s the difference? This simple guide sorts it out for you. Hybrid Plants A hybrid vegetable is created when plant breeders intentionally cross-pollinate two different varieties of a plant, aiming to produce an offspring, or hybrid, that contains the best traits of each of the parents. Cross-pollination is a natural process that occurs within members of the same plant species. In hybridization, pollination is carefully controlled to ensure that…

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