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Inspiration & Advice

How to master growing and harvesting tasty tomatoes
(Part 2)

Thinking of growing tomatoes in your backyard or on your balcony? These delicious little fruits are one of the most popular foods to grow, but they do require a bit of know-how and care to ensure you produce a colourful, plentiful crop.
In this article we'll help you grow and harvest those little beauties.

Ready to get started?

We love homegrown tomatoes. Not only are they full of vitamin and mineral goodness, but when grown at home, they’re also sweeter and more flavourful. Plus, you can avoid all the nasty chemicals ensuring they’re 100% organic for you and your family.

Ideally, tomatoes should be planted in Spring, but this varies depending on where you live in Australia or NZ. In some parts, you may need to plant them earlier. The best daytime temperature is 21-29°C (daytime temp). The good news is they grow quickly!

Tomatoes are so versatile and come in a massive range of shapes, sizes and varieties – from snack-sized Red Cherry (great for pots and patios) to Grosse Lisse, Siberian heirlooms, truss and Green Zebras (perfect for garden beds). Just take your pick!

Tools & materials

So, what do you need to be a tomato growing guru? Soil, tomato seeds, sunlight and some rain, are a good start, but here’s what we recommend to grow some good-uns!

18254 Grip & Grow Freestanding Kit Large
Grip & Grow® Freestanding Kits View Product
18302 Tomato Cage
Tomato Cages View Product
18755 Olive wire tomato cage 1.2m
Wire Tomato Cages View Product
18704 Enviro Tie 40m
Enviro Tie View Product
Ultrapost Black Bituminous 45cm
Ultrapost Black Bituminous Dipped View Product
Ultrapost hot dip galv
Ultrapost Hot Dip Galvanised View Product
20958 Trellis Mesh 120x100x100x1.2 5m
Trellis Mesh View Product
15528 Trellis Mesh 900mm
Trellis Mesh – HD Plastic View Product
18719 Grip & Grow Plant Tie
Grip & Grow® Hook and Loop Tie View Product

Additional materials needed for this project:

  • Gloves/shovel/trowel
  • Garden bed or pots
  • Seedling trays if growing from seed
  • Your choice of tomato variety
  • Compost and/or blood bone
  • Sulphate of Potash

Your step by step guide

  1. Planting and Supporting Tomatoes

    Lush, full and beautiful seedlings, ready for planting.

    But first, water the soil well and get your choice of Jack support up.

    Dig a hole and plant the seedling. Press the soil gently, don’t compact it and cover it with mulch.

    Tomatoes are one of those rare plants that can be planted deeper than the stem because they actually grow roots from the stem.

    Fertilise and keep them well-watered.

    Fertilise around the outside of the root zone, not directly on the roots

    Which tomato support works best and where?

    There are no hard and fast rules, but here’s some handy tips on choosing the right tomato support.

    The Jumbo Tomato Cage is great for large pots and equally at home in a garden bed. The Standard Tomato Cage and wire tomato cage are perfect for smaller tomato varieties.

    Grip & Grow frames are ideal for all varieties and the design helps save valuable space. Trellis Mesh with Ultrapost steel posts is a garden favourite for its flexibility in how big you can make and the many large hole space.

  2. Growing and Harvesting Tomatoes

    As your plants grow, the support frames start to do their job!

    Weave branches through the framework, or attach to the frame with your choice of plant tie.

    Enviro-Ties are made from soft and strong cotton and are a 100% biodegradable product made in Australia.

    Keep up the watering. Prune to keep the bush under control and give you access to the fruit. Lower leaves may start to brown so cut them away.

    Give yourself a fighting chance against fruit rot - just ask your local horticulturist what works best in your area; and if you’re worried about possums or birds, an anti-bird netting will help fix that problem.

    And now you can enjoy your first crop of tomatoes.

See our Tomato Mastery videos for more details

Part 3 – Planting Staking and Supporting

Part 4 – Growing and Harvesting