The Best Spot In Your Vegetable Garden To Plant Tomatoes

Growing tomatoes is one of the joys of summer, but to have a plentiful and flavorful harvest, it's important to plant these delicious fruits in the right spot. Tomatoes love sunlight and need approximately six to eight hours of it every day. No matter what variety you're growing, planting your tomatoes in an area that gets full sunlight will help them thrive. When deciding where to place your tomatoes, consider which spots in your yard have the most sun and avoid shady portions.

When it comes to tomato plants, it's also crucial to keep them from touching the ground, so you'll need a support system. Typical tomato supports include trellises, stakes, tripods, and cages. Tomatoes also tend to do well in areas with less wind. Since these plants like warmer spots, cold drafts aren't great for them. If you're having trouble getting your plants enough warmth and sunlight, growing them against a south- or west-facing wall could help. As the day goes on, the wall will absorb the heat from the sun, allowing it to warm your tomatoes during the cool hours at night.

Where to plant your tomatoes in your garden

When considering where the best spot is for your tomatoes, you'll not only need to think about sunlight but space. Tomatoes need a fair amount of room to grow, so it's important not to crowd them. Long-vined and indeterminate types should be placed about 3 feet apart, while determinate varieties will only need 2 feet of space. If you're using pots to grow your produce, determinate types require an 18-inch pot, while indeterminate plants need 24-inch pots.

The soil in the spot where you want to plant your tomatoes will also affect their health. These plants prefer well-draining soil with a pH level between 6.2 and 6.8, and having nutrient-dense soil will help them to grow. While tomatoes can be grown in most types of soil, they won't do well in clay. Adding calcium fertilizer or compost to the part of your garden where you plan to grow your tomatoes will help them thrive.

What plants to grow beside your tomatoes

If you're planning to grow multiple types of vegetables in your garden, it's important to consider which plants will do best next to each other. Adding companion plants beside your tomatoes can aid in pest issues and attract pollinators, which will help your tomato plants yield more fruit.

If you're having issues with nematodes, spider mites, or aphids, one of the best spots to plant your tomato plants could be near chives, as the plant will help to deter these pesky insects. What's more, once the chives have flowered, they'll also attract bees and butterflies. Several herbs, like parsley, cilantro, and oregano, are also great to grow alongside tomatoes, as they each attract different beneficial insects, such as ladybugs, parasitic wasps, and green lacewings.

Yet there is the flip side. Though some plants will help tomatoes thrive, others will cause them harm. To keep your tomatoes healthy, it would be best not to place them beside cucumbers, rosemary, sweet corn, or broccoli.