Many Farmer Markets typically start the 1st weekend in May. Depending on the Farmer’s Market you visit you could find a great variety tomato and garden plants. Some plants have been started from seed in window sills, others in green houses. Whatever the case is you need to pick a healthy tomato plant.
You may need to do a little research on which plant varieties will grow best in your area and know what you will be using the fruit for; juicing, canning, making pasta sauces, salsa or just eating fresh?
When purchasing tomato plants look for plants that are stocky, dark green and approximately 6 to 10 inches tall they should have stems that are about pencil size in diameter. Do not buy plants that are large and have flowers or have fruit on them. They will stunt plant growth and reduce the fruit yield.
Now that you have purchased a healthy tomato plant it is time to plant it. You will want soil that is well-drained and fertile. If your soil is heavy and lacks drainage it can be improved by adding organic matter. Our soil is heavy and has a lot of clay in it so we add grass clippings and some leaves as mulch around the plants. This will be tilled into soil after the harvest. You can also add other compost or peat. Every year our the soil seems to get better
The plants will do best in an area that receives 6-8 hours of direct sunlight and put in a strong tall cage at least 4 feet tall for determinate tomatoes and even taller for the indeterminate tomatoes. Whether you make your cages or decide to purchase them make sure they are strong and tall as plants get very heavy and will topple over if not supported correctly. EZ Tomato Cages will provide the support you require for any size tomato plant with the added advantage of being collapsible and easy to store. Check out the website and YouTube video at http://eztomatocage.com.