It’s getting close to that magical time of year: tomato planting season! As you choose your favorite varieties and prepare your garden beds, we wanted to offer a few tips for planting grafted tomatoes. Ezra’s Organics grafted tomatoes perform quite differently than your average tomato- offering larger harvests, more flavorful fruit, longer seasons, better plant health and more. So, it only makes sense that they would need to be planted a bit differently. Keep reading to get all the best tips for planting Ezra’s Organics grafted tomatoes this year.
Keep the graft line above the Soil
This is the single most important factor in planting a grafted tomato. The superior performance a grafted tomato offers is only possible when you plant the tomato keep the graft line above the soil. We usually plant regular tomatoes quite deeply and that works well. However, in order to ensure the benefits of the graft, you must not bury the graft line when planting. Take a close look at your stem and find the graft point. Keep it in mind as you transplant and make sure it stays above soil line. If it is buried, the scion (top part of the plant) will grow its own roots and the benefits from our superior root stock will be lost. Just keep that in mind and you are on your way to success!
Add John and Bobs
We recommend giving your tomatoes a boost, when planting. By adding John and Bob’s organic soil amendments to the planting hole, you give your plants immediate nutrition but also boost the soil life around the plant, which will help to sustain it over the course of the season. John and Bob’s four products work together to bring soil to life, with several potent organic ingredients like decomposed humus, live microbes, abundant minerals and more. Just sprinkle a few tablespoons of each product into the hole, before planting, and watch your tomato flourish! Learn more at johnandbobs.com
Stake early and heavily
These plants will grow up to 6-12 feet tall (the larger fruited plants are shorter and cherries are taller) and can bear dozens of pounds of fruit. You need a hefty support system to contain all that fruit! We recommend strong, reinforced wire cages or wooden support systems for our grafted tomatoes. The average cone-shaped cage will NOT be enough to hold these plants up by harvest time. We also recommend installing your support system before or right after you transplant your starts. This is to prevent root damage. As soon as a tomato is planted, it begins shooting out new roots horizontally across the soil. If you wait a few weeks to drive stakes into the ground around your start, you run a high risk of damaging those new roots. So, stake those tomatoes early using strong, sturdy support.
You may have noticed that your tomato start came in a one gallon pot, instead of the standard 4 inch pots. This is not an accident! Ezra’s Organics grafted tomatoes have long, complex root systems, beginning from a very young age and continuing throughout the plant’s life. Our root systems are 4-5 times larger than the average tomato. This contributes to its superior performance by enhancing nutrient and water uptake and fueling accelerated plant growth and fruit production. When planting your Ezra’s Organics grafted tomato in a container, please keep this root growth in mind. The minimum container size for these tomatoes is 20 gallons, for indeterminate varieties. Larger containers encourage more root growth and better fruit production.
Use these tips when planting your grafted tomatoes and you are well on your way! Are there any tricks you use when planting your tomatoes? Leave a comment below!
Stay tuned to this blog for seasonal advice, tomato tips and more!
Keep in touch on our Facebook page for even more information.