What is a good soil to use for tomatoes?


Old 04-30-08, 09:05 PM
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What is a good soil to use for tomatoes?

I would like to grow a few tomato plants on my apartment balcony.

What is a good soil to use? Are the top soils and potting soils sold at garden centers good? I'm concerned they may be contaminated with chemicals.

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Old 04-30-08, 09:44 PM
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Hi Tbird,

Most potting soils are peat moss based. They usually contain slow release fertilizer, so be sure not to fertilize your plants for at least 2 months if you use those. There are organic potting soils available at good garden centers or you can mix your own. You can do a google for potting soil recipes.

Old 04-30-08, 11:12 PM
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You'll probaby do very well with a good potting soil. As indicated, most are loaded and no fertilizer is needed right a way because of being loaded with slow release fertilizer. Most foks know to back on new pleanting fertilizer because they know plants come out of recenta and highly enrched beds/pots.

I've walked through gardening centers where they ripped open potting soil bags with packing knives and planted tomatoes in order to market both plants and soil and impress buyers.

You report that tomatoes were thriving and soil obviously a miracle.

If your concern is chemicals, then you need to do some research on organic potting soils and how to grow organic tomatoes. You will find that most potting soils are organic and any fertilizers added are slow release, as indicated, and requirement for fertilizer for at least a couple months.

If a newbie to organic gardening and a disdain for chemicals, you need to do some Googling on how to accomplish what you want. It's not always about the soil or the chemicals.

For instance, new neighbors moved in next door. Starry-eyed newly weds, and one tomato and one lettuce plant. They emerged one p.m., with me in grubby jeans of digging out the deathly-assured shade beds on my patio which are also infested with pine tree roots and mother tree overshading anything grown. After spending a fortune on soil amendments and so-called shade-loving plants and all fingers and toes crossed, I still do not have a clue. Sun is dappling. Deciduous trees in process of leafing out.

Back to growing tomatoes on balcony. If you do not have full sun all day, most gardeners will tell you to forget it and grow partial shade/sun plants. Even most partial shade plants need at least 6 hrs. sun. I
Old 05-01-08, 10:25 AM
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Thanks Very Much!
Old 05-29-08, 10:04 PM
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I use a mixture of one part peat moss, one part composted cow manure, and sprinkle in some slow release fertilizer with the backfill. I have two of my tomato plants in Miraclegro potting soil, which I noticed dried out very quickly despite the assurance on the bag which stated it was "moisture max" or some such gibberish. These plants have grown and produced fruit, but not without daily watering. The tomato plants in the above listed mixture can go upwards of two to three days without watering and are not only growing like crazy, but are also producing more fruit. Dont forget the mulch though. I dont think any mixture can survive for long in full sun without some form of mulch taking the brunt of the suns rays.
Old 05-30-08, 05:01 AM
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Another thing, too, with tomatoes is blossom end rot. To prevent this, use a small amount of epsom salt around the drip line (teaspoon) as the plant begins to put on blooms.

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