How Do You Mix Your Soil For Container Tomatoes?

latomatozone8July 20, 2006

Hi, Can someone tell me what all you mix together to have a good soil for container tomatoes? The nurseries around here don't seem to know much about it and I don't have a clue.I need to know one part this and two parts that.I'm sure that's already been discussed in here somewhere but I haven't found it yet and plants will be here in 3 weeks. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks,


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Uh... isn't it a tad bit late to be planting tomatoes? When do you get frosts? Maybe fried green tomatoes?

    Bookmark   July 21, 2006 at 12:26AM
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jean001(z8aPortland, OR)

I use packaged potting soil. Works fine.

Not necessary to mix your own.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2006 at 1:28AM
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Frost isn't usually a problem here.You can have a fall garden here through to late November maybe even December. I put on a jacket a couple of times last January.Of course you never can tell with La. weather. Most of the time it seems like we get 9 months summer 1 month winter and two months spring. No fall left.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2006 at 7:26AM
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oh okay... you put zone 8... I thought you were in a zone 8. Is that Louisiana or Los Angeles? Zone 8 very definitely gets frost... hard ones. I've had tomatoes live through the winter... but weren't happy.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2006 at 10:42AM
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I live in Louisiana but we only got a few frost dates way past when these tomatoes will be ready.They are all 72to 75 day tomatoes which will be mid Oct. I can't remember the last cold Oct. we had.I can remember the last time I wore shorts on Christmas day.So anyway they should be fine long enough for me to have some tomatoes.

    Bookmark   July 21, 2006 at 12:31PM
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fountaam(z5 n IN)

For my potted tomatoes, besides putting them in a big pot with potting mix. I add shells from boiled eggs & banana peels at the bottom of the pot. They seem to do better with something to breakdown over time.

    Bookmark   July 24, 2006 at 2:29AM
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barton(z6b OK)

I would recommend using bagged potting mix. Find a good one. I use the one from TLC nursery.

My mistake was mixing in some good soil from the garden. Problem was, some spider mites had overwintered in it, and they took out the potted tomato. The ones planted directly into that same soil in the garden did fine, probably more other insects around to eat the mites. The ones in the garden had a few mites but nothing like the one in the pot, and not enough to have to pull them up. Just speculating.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2006 at 9:52AM
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Billl(z7 nc)

If you plan to use organic fertilizers that require soil organisms to break them down, you probably won't be happy with just a bagged mix. I always add a couple scoops of compost to get things off to a good start. You also should consider adding some lime or other calcium source prior to planting. Since moisture levels change dramatically in containers, they will be more prone to BER. The extra calcium in the soil will help reduce that. Also, be stingy with the fertilizer. The plants obviously need some nutrients, but very rapid growth can also contribute to BER.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2006 at 4:52PM
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You've inspired me to seed a few tomatoes in some pots.

I've had them volunteer in pots every year for the past few years. They don't seem to care what the soil is - they don't get as big as in the ground, on the other hand they seem to handle the winter better (presumably the pot and patio hold more heat than the ground.)

I'll be planting in 1 part potting soil (don't remember the kind) and one part finished compost. Thanks for the uidea! Off to my seed box.

    Bookmark   July 27, 2006 at 6:31PM
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led_zep_rules(5 WI)

I have grown tomatoes in pots several times, and to be honest I put in whatever I have handy. Sometimes it is my soil mixed with some compost which is almost finished. Sometimes it is whatever mix is in some pots that I have sitting around with some compost or manure mixed in. I have done the banana peel thing, too, I always add something nutritious besides plain soil.

This summer I am growing 3 peppers in pots, they are vaguely similar to tomatoes in soil needs. I put some aged manure at the bottom of the pot, mixed a little of it into some topsoil I have piled up for the main middle part, and then added some more aged manure as mulch/fertilizer on top of the soil. The peppers are growing really well, so that seems to have worked great.

I put seedlings I started elsewhere into big pots, I don't seed them in the giant pots.


    Bookmark   July 27, 2006 at 10:53PM
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byron(4a/5b NH)

I use a cement mixer :-)

5 parts premier pro mix and 1 part aged manure

    Bookmark   July 28, 2006 at 7:30PM
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