Tomatoes are a vegetable crop that came to us from warm countries. In hot climates, capricious and sun-loving plants do not require careful maintenance.
The long light and warm period has a beneficial effect on the abundant fruiting of all types of tomatoes.
But in the north they are grown very scrupulously. Depending on several factors, different methods are used for planting tomatoes. More on this in this article.
What should be the land for growing tomatoes?
The peculiarity of the soil for tomatoes in the greenhouse is that it wears out very quickly and becomes unusable. The soil for tomatoes in the greenhouse should be loose and moisture-retaining.
The ground for planting tomatoes in the open field must be warmed up (approximately mid-April). The beds are made wide and humus is added. To stretch the film in case of frost, they put arcs. Adequate space should be left between the rows.
Why does soil quality matter?
Tomatoes have a branched superficial root system, which is 70% composed of thin suction roots. Thanks to this structure, the plant provides its ground part with a large amount of moisture and essential nutrients. This is what determines the preferences of this culture regarding the structure and quality of the soil.
The land must contain all the necessary ingredients for growing tomatoes.
Soil for tomatoes for their proper growth should contain the following elements:
It is necessary that these minerals be in an easily digestible form. In a certain part, the greenhouse soil should consist of sand, as this is necessary for the development of the skeletal part of the plant.
The soil should be loose, since the roots on the surface do not tolerate waterlogging and grow only in a loose substance, extracting nutrients from a larger area. With such characteristics as water permeability and water holding capacity, the soil retains moisture well, but does not become swampy. Also for comfortable growth of tomatoes, heat capacity is required.
In addition, when preparing the soil, it should be as harmless as possible from infections and free from pest larvae.
The soil should not contain weed seeds.
What acidity should it be?
Tomatoes love soil with an acidity of 6.2 to 6.8 pH... To determine the acidity of the soil, a set of indicator tests (litmus tests) are used, which are sold in gardening shops.
Read about what acidity the soil should be for tomatoes and how to ensure their high yield, read here.
If it is not possible to use purchased mixtures, you can prepare the soil for the greenhouse on your own.
In the fall, after harvesting, you should remove the remnants of greenery and carefully dig up the soil, freeing it from the roots of previous plants. The prepared soil must be checked for moisture: make a lump, and if it crumbles, then everything is in order. The soil made for the greenhouse should smell like earth (no external odors).
Homemade Soil Benefits:
- Can be prepared according to the exact recipe and keep the right amount of trace elements.
- Cost savings.
- Long cooking time.
- You need to follow the recipe exactly.
- The soil can be contaminated.
- Finding and buying the right components can be time consuming and expensive.
We offer you to watch a video on how to prepare the soil for a greenhouse with your own hands:
When buying ready-made soil, you cannot find out how correctly it was manufactured and with what it came into contact. Therefore, it should be treated with a solution called "Fitolavin", 2 ml per liter of water. The basis of purchased soil is most often peat.
Benefits of purchased soil for tomatoes:
- It is ready to use without additional processing.
- It is saturated with trace elements and other components.
- It is a light and water-absorbing type of soil.
- You can pick up packages of different sizes - from 1 to 50 liters.
- Nutrient content inaccurate (shown as a range).
- Approximate pH level.
- Sometimes peat dust is added instead of peat.
- There is a risk of purchasing low-quality material.
The main components of the earthen mixture:
- turf or garden land;
- non-acidic peat (pH 6.5);
- sand (washed or river);
- humus or sifted mature compost;
- sifted wood ash (dolomite flour can be used).
The simplest and optimal composition of the soil mixture for tomatoes will turn out if you mix:
- 2 parts of peat;
- 1 part of garden land;
- 1 part humus (or compost);
- 0.5 parts of sand.
Peat usually has a higher acidity, so you should add to the bucket of the resulting mixture:
- 1 glass of wood ash;
- 3 - 4 tablespoons of dolomite flour;
- 10 g of urea;
- 30-40 g superphosphate;
- 10 - 15 g of potash fertilizer.
Fertilizers can be replaced with a complex fertilizer containing more phosphorus and potassium, and less nitrogen.
Do not use organic fertilizers that are in the process of decay... At the same time, a large amount of heat is released, which can burn the seeds (and if they manage to sprout, they will still die from the high temperature).
Clay impurities are not used, as they make the soil denser and heavier. Heavy metals quickly accumulate in the soil, so do not use land located near a busy highway or on the territory of any chemical plant. Care must be taken to ensure that the soil in which the tomatoes will grow is as clean as possible.
Purchased land is mostly cleaner than garden land (minus garden land) in terms of the content of weeds and possible diseases. Soil from your garden is used if it is crumbly and textured. Garden land after growing nightshades on it (where garlic, cabbage, beets and carrots grew) is not taken. The advantage of the garden land is that it often has a good mechanical composition.
Which is better to use?
For high yields, greenhouse land must be:
- Optimal heat exchange.
- Air permeability.
- The ability to saturate with moisture during watering.
- The ability to absorb all the required substances and minerals.
The soil for the greenhouse includes:
- sod soil;
- limestone rocks.
Humus is used as a natural fuel.
- Phosphoric acid.
- Calcium oxide.
- Potassium oxide.
All of these elements are useful for the plant.
- Nourishes with minerals.
- Provides the entry of nutrients into the ground.
- Ground mixed with humus conducts air well.
- Turf is also important for the growth of tomatoes.
- Saturated with plant root residues.
- Increases moisture absorption of the environment in which the plant develops.
We offer you to watch a video on the rules for preparing the soil for planting tomatoes in a greenhouse:
To grow beautiful, without flaws, tomatoes in your own greenhouse, you need to know how to comply with the conditions necessary for the growth of this plant. Tomatoes are not native to our latitudes, and they are used to a completely different soil. It is necessary to create an environment for them as close as possible to their natural conditions, and then a bountiful harvest awaits us. The greenhouse can be called the best home for tomatoes.