Tomatoes are one of the easiest fruits (yes, fruits not vegetables) you can grow and they are also nutritious, full of minerals and important vitamins like A and C. Having fresh tomatoes from your garden is something everyone wants to have, and that’s why learning how to grow them properly and successfully is important. Today we will be talking about how far apart to plant tomatoes and why it’s so important to know this!
Planting tomatoes too close can cause so many disasters and we don’t want that. Spacing tomatoes depends on a few factors like what type you are growing and where you are growing them. Let’s check the list below to find out why it’s so important to know how far apart to plant tomatoes!
The Importance of Tomatoes Spacing
Spacing Correctly Improves Their Nutrients:
Tomatoes need lots of nutrients and water in order to grow properly and you should provide them just that. But if you plant tomatoes plants too close, they will compete for those much needed nutrients. Once this happens, they will start to rob each other of their nutrients and it will cause them to grow smaller. If your space them right, you will give each plant the right amount of water and nutrients and you’ll also be harvesting big and healthy tomatoes!
Spacing Correctly Helps You Support Them Better:
Tomatoes plants sometimes need some support to help them grow well and improve harvesting. If you plant them too close this won’t be possible. Spacing them at certain distances can allow you to support the plants with trellis, stakes or cages. Basically, whatever method you choose will benefit your plant tremendously!
Spacing Correctly Helps Them Receive Better Sunlight:
Tomatoes love the sun, that’s why it’s so important to provide them with enough sunlight and if you overcrowd them, this won’t happen. Planting them too close will result in plants growing too tall in order to get sun and their branches will get weak and scrawny. All of this will result in less fruit production. Tomatoes should receive full sun almost the whole day in order to give you a rich yield, so spacing them will give them just that.
Spacing Correctly Helps Prevent Disease and Pests:
Two of the main concerns when it comes to growing tomatoes are pests and diseases. When it comes to pests, the most common ones are caterpillars. It’s important to get rid of the pests because they eat the leaves. In order to remove this pest, you will have to pick them with your hands and planting the tomatoes too close won’t allow you to achieve this.
The most common diseases are late blight. This fungal disease will lead to rotten fruits and great spots on your leaves. When you have the plants too close to one another, air circulation will decrease, and when wet outdoors, leaves will dry slowly. This means that the leaves will stay wet too long and promote fungi growth.
How Far Apart to Plant Tomatoes to Encourage Healthy Growth
Space will depend on which type of tomatoes you are growing and where you are growing them. This guide will help you with everything you need to know.
1. Spacing Determinate Tomatoes Plants
Determinate tomatoes are bush plant varieties that grow to a certain height and then stop growing. Some varieties are smaller and grow fruits really soon. The best space is 1 to 2 feet apart and 2 to 3 feet between rows. This space will easily allow you to support the plants with cages or stakes around and help you enjoy a big harvest!
2. Spacing Indeterminate Tomatoes Plants
Indeterminate tomatoes are a vining plant varieties that can grow all season. They mostly grow up to a height of 8 feet or more and therefore need support. The space between the plant will depend on the support system you choose.
If you are supporting them with cages, you should space the plants 2 to 3 feet apart and 4 to 5 feet between rows. Using a cage instead of stakes requires less maintenance and attention which is easier for you. It’s super easy to make your own cage just make sure to leave a wide space between wires so you can harvest the tomatoes easily!
For stakes, you should space the tomato plants 1/2 to 2 feet apart and 2 to 3 feet between rows. Stakes made of wood are the best choice, with about 6 feet in height. When the plants start to grow, you might have to tie the plant to the stake using a soft band like a cloth or twine.
3. Spacing Tomatoes Plants in the Ground
If you are starting your tomato garden directly in the ground, you need a lot of space to plant in rows which make tomatoes look amazing. Space tomatoes plant 20-24 inches apart and 36 inches between rows. That will be enough space between rows so you can support them and harvest them nicely.
4. Spacing Tomato Plants in Raised Beds
Planting in raised beds is almost the same as planting in the ground, so space the plants 18-22- inches apart. Another thing to consider, is the depth of your raised bed because the deeper the soil, the more space for your plant’s roots and nutrients – 12 inches or more deep will be enough!
5. Spacing Tomato Plants in Containers
Growing tomatoes in containers is one of the most popular ways of growing tomatoes. This method will help you if you don’t have a garden or enough space. Sometimes growing tomatoes in containers can be a challenge if you don’t know how to space them correctly. Your pot should be big enough so it allows you to support the plants.
Your pots or containers should be 14-inches in diameter and a 5-gallon volume for one tomato plant. But for more space, a container of 17 to 20 inches in diameter and 10 gallons should work even better. Try to only plant one tomato plant per container so they don’t have to compete for space.
Learn how to grow tomatoes!
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