Growing the Perfect Tomato
Fresh, homegrown tomatoes ripened in the summer sun—there’s nothing more satisfying than flavorful, juicy tomatoes straight out of your own backyard. Get your tomato plants from the Haggen garden department to create your own bountiful outdoor garden and have fresh tomatoes all summer long.
Tomato Tips from Nathan Weston of Joe’s Garden
- A tomato start will give you at least a six week advantage over direct seeding.
- Start by working up the soil to a depth of 12″ with 12″ around your planting location.
- Hammer in a 6′ stake in the center of your worked up soil; bury the plant up to its lowest branches.
- You can also grow tomatoes in large pots if you don’t have a good sunny spot in your yard. We recommend that the pot holds at least five gallons of soil.
- As the plant grows, use twist ties to secure the plant to your stake.
- Keep the soil moist and make sure to only water the surrounding ground, not the plant.
- Use a good vegetable fertilizer.
- When your tomato plant reaches 2′ high, it’s time to remove suckers. Suckers develop in the joint of the stalk and branches. They look like small tomato plants growing out of the side of the stalk. Suckers will not bear fruit and they will only draw energy away from your tomatoes.
- To help with pollination, gently tap your hand
on each of the blossom clusters.
- To avoid fall blight, at night pull a large black plastic bag over your plant and remove it in
the morning. This will keep the dew from settling on your plant and hopefully spare it from the blight.
- Our first frost arrives in late September, so it’s time to harvest your remaining tomatoes. The best way to do this is to leave the fruit on the vine and cut the vine off below the lowest fruit. Hang the tomato plant upside down in your garage and the remaining tomatoes will ripen over the next few months.
Our Tomato Varieties
Locally grown in Sumner and Bellingham, Washington, our healthy, mature tomato plants have been grown in the Northwest to ensure the best results in your garden. Choose from our tried-and-true favorites:
- Bush Early Girl
- Better Bush
- Beefmaster/Super Steak
- Big Boy
- S.S. 100 Cherry
- Sweet Million
- Early Girl
- Grape Napa
- Grape Juliet
- Indigo Rose
- Lemon Boy
- Yellow Pear
- Red Pear
- Cherokee Purple
- Mr. Stripey