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I brought some tiny baby plants back from Cornwall with me in Feb to get a head start. It worked well last year! 

Then sowed mine in March, heated propagator indoors. I heated the greenhouse to put them out to 5, then gave in & put it to 10. 

They did then go away with me & were put in an unheated greenhouse for a week end of March, which may have checked them a bit. They weren't potted on too quickly because I knew I needed to transport them. No food until first fruit sets.

Still, I'm in West Sussex & am disappointed that mine are so far behind yours in East Yorkshire Johntheeng! 



I live in Belgium in a app 2 floors up. My balcony is 1 x 4.5 mtrs and south facing.

I have Mini bell and Gardeners delight in fruit and Moneymaker and Sungold in flower.

These are grown in pots dia 25 cm by 27 cm high. old cut flower pots from a local supermarket. I tried to plant early in a propagator but all 3 plantings failed as I could get them to germinate but they just went so leggy then died. In the end I just planted 2 seeds in each pot and covered with a plastic bag and put them on the balcony. Topping up water from the tray under the pot so it sat in a small amount off water. now I have some nice plants. My cucumbers grew well like this 2.

I have started to feed them a tomato feed bi weekly so lets hope I get lots off fruit.

If anybody has any advice about growing in pots then plz do give it. I have always gardened on the land this is my first yr growing in pots troughs etc.

Lokelani, I would say that you have done every thing right except to have them in an unheated greenhouse so early. The night time temps are too low so early in the year. I put mine in one mid to late April depending how the temperture is. May be yours dont like going on holidays.

To Mrs Lilly Pond and Insomnia1973.....If I promise to bring the coffee, can I join you in the corner, I sooo have a lot to learn! I have masses of flowers on my toms but not a single fruit I planted them in march, surely they should be fruiting by now, how long has a girl got to wait??? I've made plenty of mistakes but also had a few triumphs, so its not all bad. I'm learning lots from the guys on the forum and they truely are a godsend! 


About all you can do is try to force them to fruit. Cut back on the water and, more importantly, cut out fertilising altogether.


Mrs Lilly Pond

Loz of course you are welcome in the corner with myself and Insomnia hee hee.  Next year we shall all be top of the tomato growing class with Bob the gardeners help. Thanks Bob and everyone else who has given us such useful tips, like Bob said this site is great for sharing experiences.





Miss Becks

Oh absolutely Loz! The more the merrier! I think GW should start up a boot camp to get us up to scratch!! LOL


Mrs Lilly Pond

Thank you Italophile, do I start to water when the flowers appear? and when should I feed (if at all)?


Producing flowers - hence fruit - is the tomato plant seeking to reproduce itself, to ensure another generation, Lilly. It's much more likely to want to do this if it fears for its future, and it won't fear for its future if it's well-fed and well-watered. It will just lollop along enjoying the comforts. In simple terms it's a matter of creating an environment that causes the plant to think its future is threatened. Tough love, controlled neglect, call it what you like. It won't hurt the plant. Toms are tough, resilient things.

More specifically, over-feeding, particularly with a food high in nitrogen, is one of the major causes of a lack of flowers. Don't feed at all till the first fruit sets. Then, for containters, you don't need to feed more than once a month. Toms aren't "hungry" plants, they don't need to be stuffed full of nutrients. In fact it's bad for them. Plants in the ground - given decent soil to start with - don't need more than three feeds in the entire season.

For containers, let the mix dry out between waterings. Not just now, but always. Keep the plant out of its comfort zone and it will reward you.


I have given up on my outside tomatoes and moved them all in their pots into the greenhouse.   I figure that the temperature in the greenhouse is what it should now be outside in the garden.    It's worth a try.

Miss Becks

Italophile, a bit of a strange question, but does a plants smell mean anything?

Let me explain, I still have a few of my tomato plants indoors upstairs, and every so often, when walking upstairs, I get that wonderful tomato plant smell, like when they've just been watered, but other times I don't. I wondered if it meant anything, you  know, like a plants way of telling you something?

They've never been fed with anything, just been watered, and not flowering yet, so I just leave them in the lightest spot and check on them daily.

I realise reading that question back you may think I'm slightly bonkers, but hey, humans give off odours, so why can't plants!!



muddy mare

!n december i started my tomato plants off they are now plastered in tomatoes but are being very slow in ripening sunshine needed i think!


Becks - tomato plants have their own wonderful smell, don't they? It comes from an enzyme produced on the leaf. I get the same thing too - walk anywhere near my outdoors toms and the aroma is thick in the air, at other times it's not. It may be that something like watering stimulates or triggers the enzyme.

muddy - the optimum temp for ripening is anything above about 21C. Bring on the sunshine, though it's the temperature that ripens them, not the actual sunlight.



I think you're right Johntheeng, my plants didn't like going on holiday.

I typed end of March, I meant end of April, but even so, the temperatures were the same as they'd normally be end of March!

It was a shame they had to be moved then. Probably halted their growth so much it wasted the electricity of me having treated them to 10 degrees before that.

Keeping everything small for transporting probably saved them from me potting them on too soon though!



Miss Becks

Thanks Italophile. As long as it's normal, and not my plant crying out for help, I'm happy 


No no no no no no. You'll know if it's crying out for help.

Miss Becks

Good, good. I'll go back in my corner now.

Yeyyyyyy, I have 2 tiny tomatoes but guess what....the first ones to fruit are the most neglected! after filling 3 grow-bags I had 4 plants left which I left in their small pots for weeks then later popped all 4 into a terracotta pot and stuck them in the greenhouse, they have had the least water because of the pot and now I have fruit! obviously I've been over watering. The actual plants look the healthiest too, the grow-bags look leggy, a bit crinkly looking, but not crispy and have creamy white specks on and brown edges whereas the pot are all a lovely green colour......very odd! anyway.....I HAVE TOMS!!!!!!

Miss Becks

Does that mean you have graduated out of our corner Loz?? Last in, first out! LOL