7 Tips to Watering Tomato Plants

Watering your tomato plant is a very important thing to get right to guarantee the biggest and juiciest crop, and also to make sure your tomatoes reach harvest time healthy and disease-free. Here are Seven key tips to bear in mind, plus hands-down the best and most efficient way to water your plants, which the very best professionals use:

1. Regularity is Key

Make sure you water consistently and regularly, any slight variation in the water supply and moisture levels of the soil around your plant can lead to problems and make your plant vulnerable to pests or fungus. Blossum End Rot is a common result of irregular watering.

2. Don’t Over-Water

Too much watering can mean it doesn’t all get absorbed into the soil – if water starts running off on the surface it can erode the soil, weakening the root structure. Pay attention to the soil type – how quickly it absorbs your water. And…

3. Make Sure Of Good Drainage

The drainage of your soil is equally important, as bad drainage can lead to your tomato plant drowning under the ground. Before you plant dig a few holes and fill them with water. If the water still hasn’t completely drained an hour later you should dig up the earth with a spade, going down a good 4 or 6 feet. Or find a better plot.

4. Don’t Water By Hand

Tomato Plants need 1 to 2 inches of water a week. If you are doing this by hand and you have several plants that is a huge amount of water to apply every day or two.

If you are watering by hand it is likely that you will get bored after standing there for 20 minutes, like many people do, and the temptation to stop short and not give your plants quite enough water is high! So get a sprinkler or set up a trickle system as illustrated below.

5. Watch Those Leaves

A problem with hand watering or sprinkle watering is that they inevitably get the leaves wet, which encourages the growth of bacteria and fungi.  If you must water in this way – at least stay out of your tomatoes when the leaves and fruits are wet, as you can easily help the spread of disease if you are brushing from wet leaves to wet leaves. But the best solution to all of this is…

6. Trickle and Drip Irrigation

This is the watering methods the professional tomato growers use and any serious tomato plant enthusiast. It not only avoids getting the leaves wet, it also waters with perfect consistency, and it saves you time and money as you only need 50% of the water to get the job done – as there is very little evaporation and run-off. You can also water at any time of the day or night with the ease of turning a tap on or off.

The trickle and drip irrigation system is simply to set up a hose with many pores running down it that leak a consistent amount of water spread evenly throughout your plot. It takes a little investment and time to set up but in the long run it will save you far more of both so it is well worth the effort.

You can find a good trickle and drip irrigation kit at your local gardening store, and follow the instruction s to set it up. The water will spread out through the soil for one meter on each side, so bear this in mind when positioning your hose.

7. Drip-Feed Fertilizer to Supercharge Your Plants

The greatest trick with trickle and drip irrigation is to get a fertilizer injector that can mix in fertilizer with your water and give the plants a steady diet of all the nutrients they could need.  This is the best way to water your plants and ensure a great harvest. this tip is especially good when watering tomato seedlings, which need every boost they can get.

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