Botanically a fruit, Tomatoes are mostly used as a vegetable in almost all the cuisines. Read on to know more about Best Season to Grow Tomatoes in India!
Tomato is a berry that grows on Solanum lycopersicum, commonly called tomato plants and is used as a vegetable in various salads and cuisines in India. Although this plant happens to be a native of South America, it is cultivated throughout the world, thanks to its use in multiple cuisines. Let’s know about the Best Season to Grow Tomatoes in India.
Requirements for Growing Tomatoes
- Temperature: Tomatoes require warm and bright weather to grow and can not stand high humidity or frost. To fruit, the tomatoes need a constant temperature of 12-24 C.
- Soil: Loamy soil, which is 6.0 -7.0 in pH, is ideal for the growth of tomatoes. Moreover, they grow best in a soil that is well-drained and loosely packed.
- Sunlight: These plants require a minimum of 6-8 hours of direct sunlight to grow well.
- Watering: While over-watering may rot the plant, under watering will hamper its proper growth—water the plants when the upper layer of soil dries out. An even supply of water will keep the plant healthy.
- Fertilizer: You need to prepare a bed with the right quantity of manure and compost for sowing tomato plants. A fertilizer rich in calcium is ideal.
Best Season to Grow Tomatoes in India
Tomatoes require a warm climate to grow. They are usually planted in March and April in India and harvested in the late summers. But presently, due to the ever-increasing demand for tomatoes in the markets, farmers are growing them throughout the year. They use various techniques such as greenhouse farming to do so.
You can also grow tomatoes all year long in your garden itself and enjoy the homegrown vegetable throughout the year!
Growing Tomatoes Outdoors
Growing tomatoes outdoors is as easy as growing any other vegetables in your garden. You need to sow the tomatoes early if you wish to grow them outdoors. The only thing that you need to take care of is not planting them too soon, such as in January or February, as the plants can rot due to overwintering. The ideal time for sowing tomato seeds is in March and April. During this time, the temperature is usually consistent, and planting them deeper will encourage the roots to grow stronger. Moreover, you have to choose the sunniest spot in the garden, as these plants crave sunlight.
After planting, feed them with the proper amount of fertilizer like Gobar ki Khaad. An appropriate supply of water will help the roots to become stronger. Besides, pruning the plants is an excellent way to regulate fruiting. You can harvest the tomatoes in June and July.
Growing Tomatoes Indoors
Growing tomatoes indoors requires a little more attention than growing them outdoors. First of all, start by choosing the right variety of tomatoes. You can select an indeterminate (vining) variety that is ideal for indoor plantation. You can grow your own seedlings or buy them from a nursery as well. Use starter mix, if you are growing plants from seeds. Plant them in a starting tray and provide them with proper light and warmth, until they sprout.
Transfer the seedlings into larger pots and move them to the sunniest possible place in your house, as the sunlight helps them root stronger. Do remember to rotate the plant, so that all sides of it gets an equal amount of sun. Water regularly when the topsoil dries out and maintain the consistency of moisture in the soil. You have to assist pollination manually due to the absence of external pollination agents inside houses. Along with all this, fertilize the plants lightly, once every week, with Gobar ki Khaad.
It takes almost 60-80 days for a tomato plant to fruit. Moreover, the fruits grow on all the branches, so you have to provide proper support to the plant trellis.