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Growing Tomatoes Inside During Winter

Q. Can I grow a couple plants in my shop this winter with grow lights? If so, let me know any tips for first time effort.

A. There are three places to grow tomatoes indoors.

  • On a windowsill. While a window is the easiest and cheapest place to grow tomatoes inside, make sure it faces south to allow enough light. Watch out for drafts to keep plants warm.
  • Under grow lights. A controlled light source allows tomato plants to receive their needed 12-16 hours a day.
  • In a greenhouse. A glass enclosure lets in plenty of natural light. With a reliable heat source in the greenhouse, plants can grow well.

Grow lights are an excellent choice as they can provide the required 12-16 hours of light that tomato plants need. In the past, standard fluorescents were primarily used for starting seedlings, mainly because they were inefficient. But advances have changed that. High output and compact fluorescent lights emit more light, less heat, and a strong light spectrum than standard fluorescents and are significantly more efficient than incandescent lamps. Fluorescent lights produce much less heat than incandescent and HID grow lights. Set them close to plants for best results – no closer than 4 inches but no further than 24 inches. Closer is better.

Learn more about grow lights for tomatoes and how to use them.

Good luck and happy gardening!
Your friends at Tomato Dirt

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