Alright, alright! Don’t faint! But it actually IS possible to successfully grow a healthy crop of tomatoes–indoors! If your grow region isn’t warm enough to support growing tomatoes outdoors, you can always grow them inside in containers. You can also save this guide for the wintertime, and have access to freshly grown tomatoes all year long!
I plan to grow a crop outdoors this year, and have a different variety of tomatoes grown indoors. Here’s how you can grow your own!
Before beginning, it’s important to go into this with realistic expectations. Your tomato plant grown indoors will definitely be smaller, and it will produce less fruit than varieties grown outdoors.
Now that’s out of the way! Let’s begin!
Start your tomato seeds inside in a healthy mix of seed starter. Make sure they aren’t planted in a pot bigger than 6 inches, keep the soil moist and in a warm, well lit area. Seed germination should happen in about 5 to 10 days.
After seed germination occurs, move the pots to a southern facing window. Keep it away from anything that could potentially cause a draft, these are deadly to little tomato plants! Once your little seedlings have hit about 3 inches tall, it’s time to move them to a larger plant that will accommodate them for a longer period of time.
Choose a ceramic pot that isn’t glazed for adequate soil drainage! At this point, your plants should be getting a healthy dose of fertilizer every couple of weeks.
If you want your tomato plant to produce fruit, you will need to hand pollinate. Gardening Know How has a really helpful guide!
Essentially, when blossoms start to appear on the plant, you will need to cross-pollinate the flowers using a cotton swab. Gently brush pollen from different flowers onto one another!
Indeterminate tomatoes produce fruit within sixty to eighty days after planting. They will continue to produce fruit all season long. You will know that your tomatoes are ripe when they have turned a vibrant and even red, yellow, or pink. The tomatoes should be slightly soft when squeezed.
To pick the tomato, grasp it near its stem and twist it until it snaps off