Your Own Fresh Tomato Garden - Heirloom Tomato Garden KitGrowing guides
If this is your first time growing tomatoes from seed, congratulations! We’re excited for you to be successful and taste the amazing flavor of home-grown tomatoes.
After tasting tomatoes you’ve grown from this kit, you won’t settle for anything else.
To get your Classic Tomato Heirloom Garden growing:
- Start by following the instructions for hydrating the soil discs. Once the soil is expanded and in pots, you are ready to start planting.
- Plant the seeds according to the instructions for each specific seed packet.
- Pick a nice warm spot. Tomato seeds don’t require light to germinate, but they need warmth. A temperature of 70-80 degrees is best.
- After they sprout, tomatoes need intense light.
Knowing how and when to water is vital:
- Water by misting until the seeds start to sprout.
- Take care that the seeds don’t dry out too quickly - seeds need to stay moist but not waterlogged to sprout.
- A dome can help retain moisture. Keep the dome on until they begin to sprout around 7-14 days.
- Once the seedlings are growing, continue to keep the soil moist. Less frequent but more deep watering will encourage root growth.
- The pot should not dry out completely between waterings, just the top layer of soil.
- As the plants grow, water only the soil, keeping the plants dry.
Additional growing tips:
- Tomatoes need a full 8 hours of sunlight. When starting indoors, they will need direct lighting from grow lights.
- The fiber pots included in the kit make transplanting easy. Once there are at least 4 true leaves, you can transplant tomatoes into a larger pot. True leaves are not the first set that develops when the seed first sprouts. True leaves come later and have the shape of regular tomato leaves.
Now that you've got your tomatoes growing and the watering down, you'll want to consider the other thing that plants need - food. The soil that comes in your kit has the added amendments that create a fertile growing environment. When you transplant to a garden or larger pots, you may need to add fertilizer.
You will need to transplant your tomatoes so they reach their full potential.
Tender seedlings need time to adjust to outdoor conditions. Over the course of a week or two, harden off the tomato plants by placing them outside. Start with just a few hours a day and gradually increase the exposure time—no need to rush. Take your time and make sure the weather is over 60 degrees before transplanting.
Supporting your tomatoes:
Tomato varieties are either determinate or indeterminate. Determinate are the bush varieties, and indeterminate are the vining varieties. The indeterminate varieties will need more maintenance throughout the growing season, including more extensive supports and pruning. Keeping your tomatoes up off the ground can keep them healthier, allowing for better air circulation and sunlight to ripen the fruit. Plan early so you can have a sturdy support in place.
Have more growing questions? At Sow Right Seeds, we love gardening, and we want your experience to be successful. Explore our Planter's Library for more tomato growing tips, and check out our selection of herb, flower, and vegetable varieties to see what you'd like to grow next!
Written by Beverly Laudie