Tomato Crop in the Garden: From crop rotations to associations to avoid the parasites that you must take into account and the good varieties to choose from, everything to be successful in growing your tomatoes in the garden.
Tomato Crop in the Garden
- Botanical name: Lycopersicon esculentum.
- Cycle: annual plant.
- Origin: Central America and northwest of South America. The tomato was domesticated for the first time in Mexico.
- Soil: rich and well-drained, with sunny exposure.
Hardiness cannot withstand temperatures below 2 ° C.
- Seedling: in February and March.
- Plantation: from March to June.
- Harvest: approximately four months after sowing and until the first frosts. (July – October)
Filled with sugar and sun, the picked tomatoes are tasty. Very numerous, they are used in the kitchen varied according to their quality: juicy, meaty, without seeds, the biggest ones are ideal for things, the small ones are allowed to eat as an aperitif. The recipes of raw or cooked tomatoes do not lack: ratatouille, gazpacho, tartar, sauces, coulis, salads … you can harvest them and prepare canned food to consume all year round.
- Start sowing indoors for early varieties.
- Sow in terrines at 20 ° C. One month later, transplant the most beautiful plants in pots.
- In the two or three leaf stage, in April, transplant the seedlings. At the same time, enrich with an amendment the location that will house the tomatoes.
- Start plantations if you should no longer fear the risk of frost in soft or indoor areas. Otherwise, wait until May.
- Space plants 50 cm and rows 70 cm. Place a guard at the foot of each plant.
- Mulch to maintain soil moisture and prevent weed infestations. Bury the base of the stems to strengthen the rooting.
- Place the tomato feet before resealing. Place the stems, cut the greedy ones, then water and cover the ground.
- Pro Tip Place two handfuls of ground nettle at the bottom of the hole, at the time of planting, to activate growth and protect the tomatoes against disease.
- Wait for the fruit to form: an excess of water has the effect of reducing its flavor. Eliminate the avid ones, so that the tomatoes accumulate more sugars.
From July to the first frosts:
- Harvest the fruits relying on the intensity of their color.
- It is still possible to harvest tomatoes in September and October.
- If the cold weather arrives, it is better to collect them without maturing, wrap them in paper and keep them in a box.
Rotation of tomato crops
- Before the tomatoes: radishes, turnips, lamb’s lettuce, peas, leeks, scorzonera. Vegetable root or Fabaceae.
- After the tomatoes: buckwheat, mustard, Phacelia. Wait 3 or 4 years before growing tomatoes in the same place.
Associations with tomato
In the vicinity of garlic, asparagus, basil, nasturtium, celery, carrot, lamb’s lettuce, onion, marigold, parsley, leek, marigold.
- Wonders reduce the risk of whitefly attacks and scare away many insects. The carnations from India would also kill the nematodes, who love the roots of tomato plants.
- Basil, parsley, scallions are aromatic plants that are known to fight effectively against pests.
- Celery, beans, leeks or radish will be good neighbors in the garden for tomatoes.
- The potatoes, of the same family as the tomato, can transmit viral diseases and mold, both crops are sensitive to the strain Phytophthora infestans.
- The cucumber can contaminate the tomato with the mosaic virus, which spreads with aphids, but also with infected tools.
Fennel damages the tomato crop. Do not sow it next or your tomatoes will have a hard time growing.
Diseases and pests
Late blight of tomato occurs in hot and humid climates. This fungal disease, which often appears at the end of the season, causes irregular brown spots on the leaves that dry up, the fruits rot.
Destroy contaminated leaves and stems and thick mulching. In prevention, apply nettle manure on the ground. In humid weather, treat the plants with Bordeaux mixture.
- The virus of the tanned spots
The tanned spot virus, transmitted by thrips, takes its name from the bronze-colored markings on young fruits.
Early infection can cause the plant’s death. Avoid the proximity of peas.
- The “black ass,”
The “black cul,” or apical necrosis, forms black spots on the fruit, opposite peduncles.
This problem is due to calcium deficiency.
Bring ashes or perform irregular irrigation.
Bring water to the foot, taking care not to wet the foliage. To do this, water with a drip or install a microporous tube.
- The aphid
Aphids attack tomatoes in the garden and deform leaves and stems. An effective solution is to plant marvels among the tomato plants and accommodate the ladybugs.
- The Colorado beetle
Colorado potato beetles can attack tomatoes. Separate tomatoes and potatoes and rotate: these (solanaceous) vegetables should not be successful in the same table.
- The nematode
Against nematodes, carnations of Indian plants.
Varieties of tomatoes
Tomato, round, elongated, cherry … green, red, yellow or black tomatoes … it has many options!
- Tomato saint-Pierre: a classic variety, at mid-early, very productive, with long, smooth and long fruits that do not explode.
- Heart of tomato flesh: here is a large tomato with long and firm shape. Its taste is sweet and intense.
- Berry tomato from Berne: this variety develops fruits whose skin is fine and the flesh soft and melting.
- Brandywine tomato: large fruit with firm and very juicy flesh. Pronounced and spicy puffiness. Rustic and resistant to mold.
- Tomato con Hornos de Los Andes: a variety of tomato type chile. Its long fruits, up to 18 cm, are among the tastiest.
- Tomato F1 Apero: cherry tomato with great flavor. Good productivity and resistant to diseases. Grow indoors.
- Lemon tomato child: A late variety, round and large caliber. This tomato has a yellow color and a sweet taste.
- Black Crimean tomato: very large original fruits. Dark in the maturity and very fleshy, they have a sweet flavor.
Early and mid-season tomatoes
in cool regions: I prefer early varieties.
- ‘Harzglut’: with small round fruit, very early
- ‘Pyros ‘: round, suitable for all uses, is revealed later.
- ‘Mirabelle’: round, early and fragrant cherry tomato
Varieties of mid-season
- ‘ Andes: elongated, with little juice and seeds
- ‘Lemon Boy’: yellow, half round fruit
- ‘Tangerine’: with orange fruits with sweet flesh
- ‘Green Zebra’ : round, striped with green
- ‘Brandywine’: large fruits with pink flesh