Tomato seeds

I have just planted my free tomato seeds today. Question - when do I start feeding them? Which feeds do other gardeners use. There is an interesting article in the GW mag regarding feeds - if you have read this do you agree?  Their choice was for liquid feeds.



  • Dave MorganDave Morgan Posts: 3,123

    You don't start to feed till the first truss has set Guernsey. I haven't read the article by the way. I only feed tomorite for toms nothing else.

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 58,429

    I feed once when the first truss of fruit have set, again when the next truss has set, and so on. 

    I use Maxicrop organic tomato feed. 

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • Thanks for the information - I noticed that Maxicrop came second in the GW survey - but interested that you feed so infrequent Dovefromabove. My father grew tomatoes for his livelihood and I feel ashamed to say that I have never grown them - I have always left the fruit/veg to my husband whilst I concentrated on all the flower beds and borders.

  • Zoomer44Zoomer44 Posts: 3,153
    I read the article but make my own feed. Toms like seaweed feed, usually every couple of weeks if I remember.
  • Nanny BeachNanny Beach Posts: 2,969

    Toms I grew in January ready for potting on.  Yup, start feeding on first truss.   We use tom feed for all veg in pots/greenhouse, nothing fancy, shop own brand, half strength every watering (thats other Halfes idea)

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 58,429

    Don't overfeed and only water when the leaves begin to flag, then give them a really good soaking.  That way you're growing them hard and the flavour is much better.

    Over fed and over watered tomatoes taste like water.  image

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • Nanny BeachNanny Beach Posts: 2,969

    Treat em mean and keep em keen, eh Dove? OH always accusing me of not watering stuff.   Course last summer I was working nights, and doing almost 100 mile round trip, as I retired in October there should be no excuse this year!!!

  • Mel MMel M Posts: 347

    Same watering applies to chillis. Let them dry out and start to (just) flag, then give a good soaking. Makes them hotter by all accounts.

  • GardenGrower11GardenGrower11 NottinghamPosts: 295

    I'd agree about not over feeding too early, or plants will be focusing all their energies on lush green growth and getting bigger and might delay fruiting and flowering

    But don't go too far the other way, I don't agree with some people thinking they should let the plants wilt and starve to provoke them into last ditch survival attempts to produce fruit and therefore seed. Get the right balance, no need for physiological damage that will harm the plant.

    'Treat them mean' seems to have become a regular view here, but not in the majority of growing guides you will read elsewhere. Yes, letting the compost nearly dry out helps the plant experience a natural cycle and get oxygen to the roots. But letting them dry out completely could contribute to both splitting and blossom end rot in tomatoes. And risks damage that the plant may not fully recover from.

    (Chillies are more drought tolerant, so you could let them get closer to drying out, as Mel M suggests.)

    Little and often is best for feed. Reduce the the dilutions and increase the frequency when watering heavily in hot weather.

  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 58,429

    Oh certainly I agree  Chris, don't let them dry out ... I just watch out for the leaves to just begin to get soft and then the pots get a good soaking. 

    Out of 20+ pots of outdoor toms last year I had two fruits with BER early on ... and I'm still using frozen tomato sauce for pasta etc from last year's harvest image

    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

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