Gardening Magazine

Tomatoes Potted-on

By Mwillis
Over the Easter weekend I moved my tomato plants from the little Elmlea pots in which they were germinated into much bigger 5-inch pots.
Tomatoes potted-on
Tomatoes potted-on
The weather in the middle of April was really good, with lots of sunshine, so the tomatoes grew very quickly. It would not have been a good idea to leave them in those Elmlea pots for more than a few more days, because they would have run out of nutrients - and space!
Tomatoes potted-on
I will only keep the plants in these 5" pots for two or three weeks. I hope they will continue to grow rapidly, and will be ready for transplanting again (this time into their final homes) by about the middle of May.
The upheaval of moving into a new home can be quite stressful for a little plant, so immediately after re-potting I water them and keep them in the semi-darkness of the garage for about 24 hours. This allows them to settle in without having to cope with sunshine, temperature changes, wind, etc.
Tomatoes potted-on
I have 24 tomato plants at present, but I think I will reduce this to 16 before long. I'm going to have 12 big ones (mostly Beefsteak varieties) grown as cordons, and 4 smaller cherry-type ones grown as bushes. It's always a wrench for me to discard healthy plants, so I'll not just put the spares in the compost bin. I'll give them to friends and garden helpers. 
For the time being, these plants will live outdoors in the mini-greenhouses during the daytime, and inside overnight. The night-time temperatures are still only about 7 or 8 degrees Celsius, so too cold for tomatoes to be outside without protection. 10C would be better for them.

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