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[Tomato Dirt #201] Don’t Mulch Your Tomato Plants Too Soon
May 07, 2020

Tomato Dirt Newsletter
Volume 10, Number 9

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.

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Join horticulture expert Melinda Myers in learning How to Grow Anything and get step-by-step gardening tricks for growing vegetables, herbs, and fruit … now 75% off for Tomato Dirt readers. And check out other online courses at Bluprint for special discounts, too! Learn more here.

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FEATURE: Don’t Mulch Tomato Plants Too Early

Image: USDA

Once you set your tomato plants in your garden, it can be tempting to make the plot look nice by adding mulch.

Resist the temptation to mulch your tomato plants. Wait until the soil has warmed – about 3-5 weeks after setting plants in the garden.


Tomatoes like heat. The soil needs to heat up as much as possible before adding layers.

Early in the season, the ground is still cool (especially in northern regions or where the temperatures dip at night). Mulching traps in the cold. If you mulch early. you'll also delay blossoms, which delays fruit development, which leads to a later harvest.

Bottom line: wait …or you’ll be waiting extra long to eat fresh tomatoes.

Find out more tips and how-tos for mulching your tomato plants … and be sure to check out our Mulching Tomatoes board on Pinterest for more companion planting ideas.

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Tomato Growing Tip: Red Plastic Tomato Mulch CAN Make a Difference

Image: Tomato Dirt

Get more tips for growing tomatoes on our Tomato Growing Tips Pinterest board.

Check Out These Helps for Mulching Tomatoes

Pro-Weed Mat Weed BarriericonRed Plastic Tomato Mulch (roll 2 ft x 3 ft)icon 20-Year Weed Shield weed barriericon

More Mulching Tips

What’s the Best Mulch for Mulching Tomatoes?Benefits and Drawbacks to Using Black Plastic Mulch Review: Biodegradable Weed Mats

Red Plastic Mulch for Tomatoes: Does It Make a Difference?

That’s it for now. More next time.

Until then, happy gardening!

Kathy with Tomato Dirt
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