Tomato (pronounced to-MAY-to)? Or Tomato (pronounced to-MAH-to)? No one really cares how we pronounce the name of our favorite garden veggie (even though, technically, a tomato is a fruit). What everyone really wants to know is how to grow the tastiest tomato for a dreamy summertime BLT. Looking for a few tricks to grow your own ‘maters? Try our tips below.
5 tips to a tastier tomato
- Hybrid vs. heirloom - Hybrid tomatoes, in general, were bred specifically to resist disease, ship well and yield more abundantly than heirloom tomatoes. That being said, as in most things, when you ask for quantity you may have to sacrifice quality. So take your pick–quantity or quality. Looking for a tasty heirloom? We love Sungold and Brandywine. Looking for an abundance of fruits for your labor? Try our favorite hybrids–Big Boy and Celebrity.
- Water - When it's hot we tend to think everything around us (including the plants in our gardens) are suffering just like we are but the truth is that tomatoes thrive off of the heat and they may not need quite as much water as we think they do. In general, watering your tomato plants about three times a week is a good rule of thumb. If your plants begin to yellow at the ends of the leaves, however, your plants are telling you they're thirsty. Too much watering may cause your tomatoes to have a watered down, bland taste. Go figure!
- Nutrients - Remember taking those Flinstone's vitamins as a kid to help you grow healthy and strong? Well, our plants need vitamins and minerals too. Use a time-released fertilizer like Osmocote or a fertilizer specifically made for vegetables with added potassium.
- Soil - When you're setting up your garden, be sure to use as much organic matter as you can in the soil (especially if your garden consists more of sand than clay). We recommend keeping a compost pile or bin for all of your scraps but we also offer compost and soil conditioner for purchase at GSCO.
- Sun - Ask a real estate agent what the most important factor is in making the most money on a property and they'll tell you: location, location, location! Just as in real estate, location is one of the most important factors in creating a richer tasting tomato. If tomatoes could speak, they'd ask you to plant them in the sunniest place in your yard. That's because the more sun the plants get, the more photosynthesis can do it's thing and thus better produce carbohydrates which produce the tasty components in it's fruits like sugar and acids. If you've got a place in your yard that receives about eight hours of sun a day, that's where your tomato plants will thrive.
Looking for tomato plants, fertilizer, watering hoses, fertilizers and anything else that might help your garden grow? Visit GSCO! We’ve got you covered.