How To Grow Tomatoes In Hanging Baskets
The benefits of growing hanging basket tomatoes
- Hanging baskets and Topsy Turvy planters make a great display on the patio.
- Hanging baskets are off the ground and away from many of the diseases and little critters that attack and eat the tomatoes!
- Close to the house – you don’t have to go far to pick them.
- There are many tomato varieties suitable for hanging baskets.
- Trailing tomatoes are easy to pick and make an attractive feature for the patio or garden.
Best Tomato Varieties to Grow in Hanging Baskets
Cherry tomato varieties that tumble, cascade or trail down over the sides of a container are best for hanging baskets.
Trailing and Tumbler varieties include:
- Tumbling Tom – Red and Yellow,
- Tumbler F1,
- Torenzo F1 – an update on Tumbler
- Hundreds and Thousands to name just a few!
These grow about 10 to 16 inches tall then trail down over the sides. The quickest growing are usually the F1 hybrids because they are more vigorous and disease resistant.
Tumbler varieties are great for high sided containers too!
Disadvantages of Hanging Baskets
- The main issue with hanging baskets is space – there isn’t enough of it for roots!
- Soil dries out very quickly on a hot day which stresses tomato plants.
- Baskets have to be watered more regularly than most other containers.
Planting too many plants in a hanging basket can reduce the amount of tomatoes you will eventually grow, not increase them.
This is because there isn’t enough room for the plant roots. Tomato plants behave according to the amount of space they have available.
Furthermore, the more plants you have in a small area, the more regularly you will need to water because the soil will dry-out fast.
Optimizing Hanging Baskets
One way to help avoid this, is to add perlite and/or water retaining gel to the soil.
Compost containing perlite, vermiculite and/or water retaining gel is available from garden centres. It is sometimes called container compost.
A few sheets of newspaper put in the base of a hanging basket – before the soil goes in – also helps stop it drying out too quickly.
A watering system such as a tap, timer and pipe/drip set up is very useful for keeping plants in hanging baskets watered.
There are also self watering hanging baskets available with a small reservoir below the soil in the the base (see below).
So have a go this season at growing hanging basket tomatoes – you and the rest of the family will be pleased you did!
See: Self Watering Hanging Basket at Amazon. This contains a reservoir filled using a feeder tube and is suitable for tomatoes.
My recommendation for one of the best varieties to grow in a hanging basket this season is Terenzo F1 also known as Tumbling Bella. This variety is an update of the well known Tumbler, a very popular tomato plant that has been very successful as a hanging basket variety.
See Also: Tomato Seed Choice 2020