Your Questions About Watering Tomatoes

Jenny asks…

Should I stop watering my tomatoes now, so they can get red color?

I have plenty of tomatoes hanging on my 10 tomatoe plants. However, they are all green and various sizes. I wonder is it now visible to cut back on watering, so that I will have red tomatoes to eat soon? I live in Northern Utah and we have extreme heat weave.

Tony answers:

I don;t have a answer for you. I just wanted to say i have the same stinking problem. I am sitting with these green tomatoes and in a heat wave.

Mary asks…

How often do you water tomatoes, potatoes, and raspberries?

I have a small garden in my back yard that gets around 8 hours of sun. I have been watering it every couple of days but the soil looks dry on top. I did spread mulch for the raspberries but not the tomatoes. Also, if you go down more than a foot and a half you hit clay so I don’t want to water to much since I heard it will hurt the tomatoes.

Tony answers:

You have to water an awful lot for tomatoes to react. There’s nothing easier to grow. Raspberries are on the other end of the spectrum, but both need plenty of water, so I’d give the tomatoes some mulch.

If you’re worried about the clay, spread some gypsum on the surface. If you were preparing the bed, you should break up the clay and mix the gypsum in, but if you spread some on top it should seep through.

The best thing I’ve ever found is wet pots. They’re clay pots that seep water into the soil and keep it moist consistently. There is some info here: Great strategy; not as convenient in drought-affected areas as in the tropics simply because the reservoir isn’t big enough here. I have attached mine to a 300 litre tank that collects rainwater instead of the 30 litre one that comes with it. But I guess if you’ve got tomatoes going this time of year you must either be in the tropics or the northern hemisphere…

Sandy asks…

When to water tomatoes grown in buckets?

I have 3 different tomato plants growing in buckets. I did not put any rocks or gravel in the bottom but I did drill some drainage holes. I am using miracle grow soil and I water about twice a week. I dont fully “soak” the plant with water as i know this is generally only done in the summer. I have a few tomatoes growing now on each plant but one in particular had a ton a blooms but they apparently didnt get pollenated as they are about dead. I am wondering if im watering too much or too little? Also if anyone has any growing tips I’d appreciate that as well.

Tony answers:

I have had plants in a similar situation in the past, and they seemed to grow best when I waited until the soil felt dry to the touch before I watered, and then got it pretty thoroughly wet. As long as you have drainage holes you shouldn’t worry too much about over watering–it might be more than the plant would like but you won’t kill it, and you’ll know not to give it so much next time. If you’re worried about pollination, make sure that the plants are somewhere that bees, etc. Can get to them. That’s the biggest problem I’ve encountered. If that doesn’t work, there are products at your local garden store that should help.

Ruth asks…

Can too much watering of tomato plants cause bad spots on the bottom of the ripening tomatoes? If so, what do?

Tony answers:

I just asked this question last week and your plants need a mixture of lime and calcium. I applied it to my plants and they are ok now. Just go to Home Depot or Lowes and in the garden section they have the product there. Tell them what the problem is and they can help you.

James asks…

Is watering your tomatoes and zucchini a good alternative to sitting wasting time asking ??? no one answers?

Tony answers:

Bad puppy!

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