Cherry tomatoes are a great addition to any garden, and with the right care, they can be quite prolific. Take for example Sarah’s garden (my fellow gardener and a great friend); her cherry tomatoes have been growing like crazy this season.
With some careful preparation and regular tending, your home-grown tomatoes can be just as bountiful! In this article, we will discuss the basics of how to care for cherry tomatoes in an organic, sustainable, and holistic way.
We’ll cover topics such as choosing the right variety, preparing your soil, planting, watering, feeding, and harvesting these delicious little gems. So let’s get started on creating a fruitful harvest of cherry tomatoes you’ll love!
Choosing the Right Variety
If you’re looking to add a pop of flavor to your garden, choosing the right variety of cherry tomatoes is key! There are so many options out there when it comes to selecting which type will fit your needs best.
Consider your location and climate; if you live in an area with warmer temperatures, opt for varieties that are hearty enough to withstand the heat and humidity. Also consider the amount of space you have available, as some types can grow quite large.
To ensure a bountiful harvest, pick varieties that will ripen at different times so that you’ll be able to enjoy tomatoes all season long.
Here are some personal favorite cherry tomato varieties:
- Sun Gold
- Sweet Million
- Black Cherry
- Yellow Pear
- Grape Tomato
- Sweet Chelsea
- Sweet Baby Girl
- Sugar Snack
- Red Currant
- Sweetheart of the Patio
- Supersweet 100
- Chocolate Cherry
- Sun Sugar
Preparing the Soil
You’ll want to give your juicy little fruits the best start by preparing the soil, and creating a warm bed for them to blossom in, like a mother tucking her children into their beds on a chilly night.
Here are the following things you will need to see and check in your soil for a fruitful harvest:
- To do this, you’ll need to make sure the soil is rich and full of nutrients.
- If using a potting mix, look for one that is organic and specifically designed for tomatoes.
- If you are planting directly into the ground, consider adding aged compost or manure as an amendment; its nutrient-rich properties will help nourish your plants and boost their growth.
- Mulching with straw or hay can also help retain moisture levels and prevent weeds from taking over the area.
By preparing your soil in this way, you will be providing an environment that promotes healthy root growth—the foundation for healthy cherry tomato plants!
Related: How to Care for Beefsteak Tomatoes?
Planting Cherry Tomatoes
Get your hands dirty and plant those nutrient-rich cherry tomatoes for a delicious harvest! Here is a step by step instructions for planting cherry tomatoes in your garden:
- When planting your tomato plants, make sure they receive at least 6-8 hours of direct sunlight each day.
- If you wish to start from scratch, plant seeds indoors in seed trays or pots 6 to 8 weeks before the final date for frost. (optional)
- Transplant seedlings outside once the threat of frost has gone and they are a reasonable height (about 6 to 8 inches tall).
- To maximize yield, space the plants 18-24 inches apart in rows that are 2-3 feet apart.
- Create holes that are somewhat broader and deeper than the seedlings’ root balls. This will support the development of robust roots.
- Don’t harm the roots when you gently remove the seedlings from their pots. Make sure the soil level surrounding the stem of each seedling matches the level at which it was growing in the container before planting it.
By taking these steps, you can ensure that you’ll have an abundant bounty of juicy cherry tomatoes to enjoy!
See more: How to care for Tomatoes grown in Aerogarden?
Watering Cherry Tomato Plants
Watering your plants regularly is key for a successful harvest – don’t forget to give them some love! Cherry tomatoes need 1-2 inches of water per week, depending on the weather and the soil type. If it’s especially hot or dry, you may need to water more often.
Too much water can cause nutrient deficiencies in soil, so make sure to check moisture levels before adding any more. A good indicator is if the top inch of soil feels dry to the touch.
Using a rain gauge or irrigation system can help you keep track of how much water your plants are getting and ensure they are receiving enough. Also, mulching around your tomato plants helps retain moisture and keeps weeds down.
Feeding Your Plants
When feeding cherry tomatoes, you want to provide them with the right balance of nutrients. The best way to do this is through organic, sustainable methods such as compost or mulching.
Feeding Cherry Tomatoes By Composting
Composting uses natural materials like vegetable scraps or grass clippings that have been broken down by bacteria into a rich soil amendment that can be added to the garden bed around the plant’s roots.
Feeding Cherry Tomatoes By Mulching
Mulch should also be added around the base of the plant to help retain moisture and reduce weeds. Both of these methods will provide your plants with the necessary nutrients they need to grow healthy and strong!
Pruning and Training
Pruning and training your plants can help them reach their full potential, so don’t be afraid to get creative with it! When pruning cherry tomatoes, you should focus on removing any dead or unhealthy foliage. This will allow the plant to direct more energy into growing healthy fruits.
Staking Cherry Tomato Plants
You may also want to consider staking your tomato plants, which will give them the support they need for bearing heavy fruits. Training your cherry tomatoes is important as well; this involves gently weaving the stems of the plant through a stake or trellis in order to keep fruit off of the ground and encourage upward growth.
Doing this will ensure that your tomatoes are given enough sunlight and airflow while allowing for more efficient harvesting. Pruning and training your cherry tomato plants is an essential part of providing them with organic, sustainable care that leads to vigorous growth and abundant harvests!
Harvesting Cherry Tomatoes
Harvesting cherry tomatoes also encourages further growth on your plant as removing mature fruit signals other buds in its vicinity that they can now start maturing too.
Harvesting regularly also helps keep your plant healthy and free from disease by preventing the over-ripening of fruits and overcrowding due to immature fruit production.
When it comes to harvesting your plants, timing is key! Knowing when to pick the fruits will ensure that you get the most flavorful and nutritious tomatoes. Cherry tomatoes are typically ready for harvest within 55-75 days after planting.
How to Check If Tomato is Ready for Harvest?
To check if the fruit is ripe, gently squeeze it. If it yields slightly to pressure, it’s ready to be picked. Make sure not to pull on the stem of the tomato as this can cause damage which may lead to disease or pest infestation later down the line.
How To Care For Cherry Tomatoes? Takeaway
Our exciting journey of how to care for cherry tomatoes comes to an end. Now that you understand how to choose the right variety, prepare the soil, plant, water, feed and prune your plants, you are well on your way to harvesting delicious fruits.
Plus, did you know that one cherry tomato plant can produce up to 100 tomatoes per season? (Source: Gardenery ) That’s a lot of fruit!
With the right care and attention, you can enjoy homegrown tomatoes all summer long. Sustainable agriculture practices like organic fertilizers and companion planting will help ensure healthy plants with strong yields. So what are you waiting for? Get out there and start growing those cherry tomatoes!