As part of this 14 day celebration of the beloved and versatile fruit, we bring you seven top tips and interesting facts for growing tomatoes either indoors or out.

 

7 tips for growing tomatoes

  • Sow your seeds between March and April for best results, planting in seed pods or modules in a greenhouse or on the windowsill
  • Preheat the soil in preparation, as tomatoes love warm temperatures. Once the soil is warm enough, then mulch around the plants to maintain soil temperature
  • Grow in a sunny position, as tomatoes love at least 6 hours of sun
  • Grow different varieties. There are hundreds of tomato varieties, from marble-sized grape or cherry tomatoes, to juicy salad tomatoes, meaty paste tomatoes, and huge, sweet, beefsteak tomatoes. Their colours range from deep crimson to orange, yellow, green, purple, and chocolate.
  • Bury the stems early on to allow roots to branch out, creating a stronger plant
  • Pinch out the little suckers that develop in the crotch joint of two branches, as they will just take energy away from the fruiting branches.
  • Water deeply and regularly whilst the fruit are developing to avoid rot and cracking

Tomatoes

 

7 interesting facts about tomatoes

  • Tomatoes originally came from Peru and the Aztec name translates to ‘plump thing with a navel’
  • Tomatoes are the richest form of Lycopene which is important for the health of the prostate gland in men
  • Tomatoes weren’t brought to Europe until the middle of the 1500s
  • The first tomatoes to be brought back to Europe were yellow, and the Italian for tomato is Pomodoro, meaning Golden Apple
  • There are over 10,000 varieties of tomato, with colours ranging from pink, purple, black, yellow and white
  • People used to be afraid of tomatoes due to their relation to the belladonna or deadly nightshade plant
  • A couple of tomato plants will produce hundreds of fruit and keep you in fresh tomatoes right through from midsummer to early autumn