Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Growing grafted tomatoes


Grafted tomatoes are often a combination of hybrid plants and heirlooms.
In general, heirlooms produce very colorful fruit with great flavor, while hybrids tend to produce longer.
Grafting involves joining an heirloom top (called a scion) with a hybrid rootstock to get a plant that produces flavorful fruit longer. Normally you would bury about 2/3rds of your plant so that the stem will root out along its stem and provide a stronger root system. The plant can be laid on its side or buried straight. Stronger root systems mean your tomato can absorb water and nutrients better. With grafted tomatoes, you want to plant straight down, with the graft above the soil line. Dig a hole about 6
" deep in the ground or in your container, in this case an Earth Box®.
Add fertilizer and cover with a small amount of soil, so the plant will grow into the fertilizer.
Next, support the stem and gently tip the pot and slide the plant out. Avoid pulling on the stem so you won’t damage the graft.
Place the root ball in the hole and build soil up around it, making the soil doesn’t go above the graft point (most important). If you bury the graft, the top part of the plant will grow its own roots and you lose the benefit of the original superior root system. Water thoroughly and place the plant tag nearby so you’ll remember the variety you planted.
We carry a great selection of grafted tomatoes at the ‘Bin. These plants are garden-ready now.


No comments:

Post a Comment