Growing tomatoes from seed takes about six to eight weeks from sowing to transplanting. Starting seeds indoors too early results in leggy, overgrown seedlings. Aim at transplanting seedlings into the farm about a week. Let us discuss the steps in growing tomatoes.
- Have a Farmland
Owning a land for your farm is a good start for your farming business . In the case you do not own one, you can discuss with land owners and have a joint venture arrangement with them where you farm on their land and share profits with them. Leasing of land is another option.The benefit is that you don’t spend money on getting a farmland.
When you have succeeded in getting a farmland for tomato farming, you can proceed with land preparation exercises and planting your tomato seeds.
- Get the Right Variety of Tomato Seeds
This goes a long way in determining the growth, resistance to diseases and yield of your tomato. Some of the most common tomato species are Roma tomato, Cherry tomato, Beefsteak and Sauce tomato. Roma variety is characterized with low moisture content, deep red color, and bigger fruits.
Tomato seeds are first planted in a nursery to provide adequate controlled conditions for the seeds to germinate.
After about two months from the time of transplanting, your tomato farm should be due for weeding and application of fertilizer. Fertilizers with high content of calcium, phosphorus, magnesium and other essential nutrient should be used to replenish the soil nutrients.
– Plant seeds at the right depth
Tomato seeds are fairly small and if you plant them too deeply, you will never see them again. Sow them about one-quarter inch deep, covering lightly with moistened potting mix. Label each variety with a plastic or wooden tag .
– Provide plenty of light
Healthy seedlings need plenty of light. Too little light results in legginess where the seedlings reach and stretch, eventually flopping over. The ideal place to start seeds is under a grow light, where you control the amount of light.
To grow healthy, sturdy tomato seedlings, leave your grow lights on for 16 hours every day.
– Maintain moisture
Overwatering is one of the quickest ways to kill delicate seedlings, so keep an eye on soil moisture. It should be slightly moist, but not soaking wet. Once seeds are sown, use a clear plastic dome or a sheet of plastic wrap overtop of the trays and containers to maintain moisture. Once germination occurs, remove all covers so that air can circulate.
– Provide adequate air circulation
As indicated in the previous step, air circulation is important when growing healthy tomato plants.
Tomato is a fast-growing crop. After about three months from planting, the tomato would start to ripen, ready for harvest. Tomato is usually harvested in batches, once you harvest the first batch you would continue to harvest tomato from your farm till the plants die off (usually in dry season).
One downside of tomato farming, as with other perishable crops, is that tomatoes have a very short shelf life. If you don’t succeed to sell your crops immediately after harvest, you will have some big loss on your hands. One way around this is to proactively find buyers before the harvest period.
Contact Greenroot Farm Estate for your Tomato Business Plan to make farming easier for you . We also have affordable litigation free lands that come with free site plan and indenture . Grab this opportunity now.