Tomato Dirt #171] Determinate or Indeterminate Tomatoes – Which Should You Grow?
February 28, 2019
Tomato Dirt Newsletter Volume 9, Number 5
Dear Tomato Dirt reader,
Welcome back to Tomato Dirt! A couple times a month, we’ll send you this newsletter packed with tips about growing tomatoes and using them.
Best Tips for Growing Tomatoes: Bestseller in 89 Countries
THE tomato-growing Bible and best-seller in 89 countries: How to Grow Juicy Tomatoes. Two horticulturalists combine forces to give you advice about the right way to prune, fertilize, water and stake tomatoes.
You’ll be able to diagnose pest and disease problems using step by step information, illustrated with 260 full color photos.
FEATURE: Determinate or Indeterminate Tomatoes - Which Should You Grow?
One way you can choose what tomato varieties to grow is by to the length of time they produce fruit during the season.
A determinate tomato plant produces fruit for a couple of weeks and then production fades out. That’s because it eventually forms a flower cluster at the terminal growing point, which causes it to stop growing in height.
An indeterminate tomato plant produces fruit throughout the season, often until frost. It never sets terminal flower clusters, but only lateral ones, and continues indefinitely to grow taller.
Advantages to determinate
Determinates are a good choice for small gardeners because they grow to a predetermined size and then stop.
Determinates grow well in containers.
Determinate tomatoes set the bulk of their crop at one time, a distinct advantage if you plan to can tomatoes or make batches of tomato sauce.
Determinates don’t require a lot of pruning. In fact, it’s best if you avoid pruning tomato determinate varieties or pinch back only suckers that appear below the first flower cluster, or you will reduce your yield.
Advantages to indeterminate tomatoes
Indeterminate tomatoes produce fruit all summer.
Indeterminates offer a greater selection when it comes to color, size, and shape.
Indeterminates continue to grow and set fruit until frost.