Tips for Growing Perfect Tomatoes!

Tips for Growing Perfect Tomatoes at

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Do you want to grow some perfect tomatoes this year?? Check out these creative tips and tricks shared right here and on The Frugal Girls Facebook Page

Sandra said: “Put foil around the bottom of your tomato plants, and the sun will reflect the bottom of the tomatoes and your tomatoes will be an even red.”

Laura said: “Coming from a long line of farmers, the best tip I ever heard for backyard growing was planting marigolds at the base of tomatoes…  it’s a natural pest repellent!” :)

Kati said: “Line your growing space with hardware cloth, if you have critter problems like ground squirrels or gophers.  You can get it at Home Depot and online at  Its better than chicken wire, and will still allow roots to grow through!”

Jennifer said: “If using tomato cages, use old pantyhose/knee high nylons to support the growing plants.  It’s something my family has always done.”

Lisa said: “I made a slideshow showing with step-by-step instructions for how to make your own upside-down tomato planters out of old milk jugs!”

Ruth said: “Try growing a heritage brand tomato.  Our plants were massive and the amount of tomatoes was crazy!!!  And super delish.  Will never grow “reg” tomatoes again.” :)

Amanda said: “Water consistently at the same time every day. This way they won’t split and will grow nice and big.”

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Chris said: “Tomato plants don’t like their feet wet at night.  Water in the early morning if possible.  This lets them drink up and stay hydrated during hot days.”

Cathy said: “If you planting in a container, you should mix 1/3 potting soil, 1/3 composted cow manure (I like Black Kow brand), and 1/3 peet moss.  Also, put a handful of epsom salt in the hole when you plant.  I also plant marigolds about 1 foot from them.  I use big containers (20 gallon) smart pots.  My tomatoes were big as your hand, and my plants were 6 feet tall last year.  If you plant in the ground, dig out a big hole, and put back 1/3 cow manure, and 2/3 soil, and added the epsom salt.  The epsom salt keeps it from having blossom end rot.”

Stacey said: “I mix epsom salts with the dirt, about 1 part to 3 parts.  It makes your plant produce a lot of tomatoes.  I did it for the first time last year and it was amazing how much fruit my plant produced.  I just planted again this year and did the same.  I had always wondered why epsom salts was sold in the garden area.”

Tracie-Marie said: “I grew tomatoes last year and mixed epsom salt and egg shells.  I put the mixture both in the hole before planting and once a month I replenished around the base of the plant.  I had so many tomatoes I had to give half away.”

Debbie said: “I crush egg shells and put them in the hole.  I also sprinkle them around the base of the plant throughout the season.  They give the plant much needed calcium and keep the slugs away (slugs have soft bellies and the jagged edges of the shells deter them or split them open).”

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Ron said: “Epsom salt when planting helps with fast germination of the seeds.  You can also mix 2 or 3 tablespoons of it, along with a dissolved aspirin, into a gallon of water.  Then spray the plants when they start to bloom and it will create a massive amount of blooms.  Blooms = tomatoes!”

Kari said: “I put powdered milk in the hole before planting.  That way the plants get calcium.  The calcium helps prevent the bottom of the tomato from turning black with bottom rot.”

Erin said: “What we did this year was to dig the hole about 8″ to 12″ or deeper, put in fish heads (other parts work too), a few aspirins, crushed egg shells, and some ground bonemeal.  Cover that up with a few inches of dirt and put the plant on top of it.  Our tomato plants are just HUGE this year and dripping with blooms.”

Charlene said: “I put banana peels in the hole when planting.”

April said: “Easy peasy: You need soil, manure, and lots of sun and water.”

Anita said: When we plant tomatoes, we cut the bottom out of a 5 gal. bucket and put it on the ground around the plant.  Then when you water the tomatoes, the water doesn’t run off of them, and it protects the plant from grounds insects and animals.  If the cold weather hasn’t left yet, put the lid over the plant at night to protect it from frost or cold.”

Rhonda said: “I didn’t do this myself, but my ex-husband did.  He dug a hole in front of his tomato plants and put a 1/2 gallon milk jug with holes punched in it.  He would then put a mixture of miracle grow and water in the jugs. He had tomatoes as big as a dinner plate and they were so good!  He also used a soaker hose instead of water from a hose or a sprinkler.”

Marty said: “Tomatoes will grow better all winter long in a plastic pot, as long as you keep sunlight on them 5 or 6 hours a day.  Plus, they do love Epsom salts mixed in the soil along with humus… manure too!”

Courtney said: “Tums or Rolaids near the roots before and during the season help prevent blossom rot.”

Christa said: “I read that placing a tablespoon of sugar into the hole before placing the plant in the hole is supposed to make them super sweet!  I’m going to try it this summer!”

Anne said: “When I planted at the lake last year, I put Epson Salt and Banana Chips in the hole, a Marigold for bugs and ground was laced with handfuls of egg shells. Very good yield.”

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  1. Karen Weir says

    Tomatoes love sunshine, enough water and good soil But, they also like calcium and magnesium. So, I put crushed eggshells in the soil. ( I save them year round in the freezer.) I also plant them with a calcium tablet that has magnesium in it. That is why epson salts is so good for tomatoes and roses. It is full of Magnesium. PS The egg shells also keep slugs away from Hostas !

  2. dorothy l. dudding says

    When I plant my tomatoes I will plant a tomato then right next to it I dig a hole about a foot deep and bury
    a gallon milk jug that I have drilled 4 holes around the bottom edge then several other holes about 4in higher
    on the jug to allow the water to escape…..keep the lid on the jug and you can insert a garden hose as well as
    any fertilizer …as the water enters the jug it mixes the fertilizer…then replace the lid to keep out dirt. using this method you water almost a foot deep instead of it running off the top of the ground….I too use Epsom
    Salts, egg shells and composted horse and cow manure I bury my tomatoes almost up to the first true
    leaves…I wrap a 3×4 piece of Reynolds wrap around the stem to keep the cut worms from cutting them off.

  3. Tami says

    We live in the SW where it’s hot, hot, hot. We have a couple of tricks: First, create a compost pile and use it when preparing your soil to retain water. Second, water at ground level to keep moisture off of the foliage. Third, use a homemade organic pesticide to keep critters away. (My recipe is: half an onion, 6 cloves of garlic, a teaspoon of Cayenne pepper, a teaspoon of Murphy’s oil, and 4 or 5 cups of hot water. Blend, strain, and funnel into a spray bottle. Spray plants (veggies, flowers, trees) once a week – I swear by this stuff! The bugs hate it and it doesn’t bother the bees) .

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