Tomatoes in Earth box

vmckague(Central Mo. Zone 5)March 30, 2009

I'm going to make a couple of earth-boxes today and would like to know what you folks think would be the best tomato for these boxes. I'm going to use the blue rectangle rubermade type boxes that can be bought at some of the big box stores. I have grow tomatoes for 30+ years but never in boxes and I know some can get very tall in a season. Maybe to tall for one of these boxes. Thanks in advance for any ideas.

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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Raybo lists all sorts of varieties in the 'Earthtainers' discussions. Just search 'earthtainers'. Photos and all. ;)

In my Earthboxes (which are smaller) I have done Rutgers, Bush Goliath, Red House Freestanding, Primetime, Bush Champion, Patio, several other "bush" varieties and many, many different determinate varieties. Staking can be a problem but if you use the recommended fertilizers and watering plan, don't over-plant the box, and can rig up a good support system most any variety will work.


    Bookmark   March 30, 2009 at 10:00AM
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earthworm73(WA z8)

Last year my first year I grew Mortgage Lifter and Brandywine in the same homemade box. In my official Earthbox, I grew 2 Cherokee Purples. ALl came out better than expected.

    Bookmark   March 30, 2009 at 10:54AM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Since it is more likely that it is an 'earthtainer' you are building (rather than an Earthbox), I linked several of the discussions for you below. They have detailed pics on construction, soil mixes to use, planting, varieties, etc. as well as links to additional info that will be of great help.


Here is a link that might be useful: earthtainer discussions...

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 10:03AM
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You should be able to grow any tomato. I prefer 5 gallon buckets which I have converted into earth containers using two of them. I had a two vine 6-7ft tall cherry tomato in a 3 gallon container. The yield was reasonable and was healthy top to bottom. So that is what can be done with good soil. Don't try with top soil. Either way the plant will usually size itself.
From the research I have down 1/2 to 2 square feet of volume is in the optimal range for soil space and yield.
There is a private park near me that did a pepper experiment and they had the same species in 5 pots. I have pictures somewhere so I should post it. In the first they just added water, in the second half recommended fertilizer, in the third recommended amount, in the fourth double and in the fifth triple the recommended dose. They thought they would certainly burn the 5th pot. Nope, it was dark green and loaded with peppers. The best plant was in the 5th pot and the one with plain water was pathetic.They were practically fertigating the fifth pot I suppose.

I like the 5 gallon buckets because I can move them if needed. I took that same black cherry into a portable green house and was growing them till mid-November in zone 5a and ate the last of them at Christmas.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2009 at 11:51AM
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