Where should I put this cherry tomato container? Stake vs cage?

nattydoll(7)July 3, 2014

I have two different(?) cherry tomato plants: one is hanging upside down, and one is in a container on my lawn.

I'm in NYC. The upside down tomato is called Heirloom Tomato Matt's Wild Cherry. The container tomato is just Large Red Cherry Tomato. The container is about 3.5 gallons. I transplanted it deeper into the pot because I read this promotes a stronger stalk.

The container tomato has grown about 2 feet above the soil line. I initially put it against the brick wall of the building, which gets a lot of heat. It is North facing, with light coming in from the West, as well. I dug a few inches in the dirt, to bury the container for security and heat. I thought this was a good spot to keep it away from the sidewalk, dogs, and people.

However, we are in NY and that area doesn't get direct sunlight until 2:30 or 3, which means it will only get 6 hours of sun if sunset is at 9.

So, earlier in the day, I've been moving it forward a few feet to get a few more hours of sun, to a spot that is next to the stairs. It is closer to the curb, kind of protected by a bush, and close to the hanging plant. SEE PHOTO.

1) Where should I put it? By the wall, or by the stairs? What will be more attractive? After weeding out a patch by the back wall, the lawn isn't as nice looking, and I feel a random container in the middle of grass looks funny. What will be best for the plant, re: sunlight?

2) Should I stake it or use a cage? I waited to set that up until deciding on location for it. It's heavy to move back and forth, and will be heavier with fruit on it! Also, which method looks better?

3) If it is closer to the stairs, how likely is cross-polinization with the upside down tomatoes? Is that necessarily a bad thing?

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fireduck(10a)

lots of issues here....haha. Tomatoes need 3 things...sun, sun, and more sun. Trying to grow with indirect sunlight most of the day is a poor idea. Also, cherries seem to be the most aggressive growers. That pot needs to be at least a 5 gallon bucket...with many drainage holes. Cross-pollination is not an issue here. Plan to have a good support system BEFORE the plant gets big. I can't address "what might look good".

    Bookmark   July 3, 2014 at 9:18AM
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labradors_gw

As Fireduck suggests, a larger container would be good, then I'd move it left, so that it is closer to the steps and I would tie it to the railing.

Could the upside-down plant be moved to the other side?

Linda

    Bookmark   July 3, 2014 at 9:31AM
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nattydoll(7)

labradors/Linda, I don't think we can move the upside down container. The iron stake is pretty deep into the ground as it is, and slightly bent due to storm damage, so I am weary of moving it, and have it secured to the staircase with jute. I wish I could hang it off a tree or something stronger! haha. Also, I live in a co-op, and the tree is on "our" side. It also gets significantly more sun here.

How much, and what kind of a difference will it make if I transplant into a bigger container? I have read 5 gallons is the general rule, but seen so many people post online - and in person - with containers smaller than I am using.

Either way, I think by the stairs will become the permanent spot. The container is hidden from street level by a bush in front, and there is already an upside down plant, there, so it won't look random if it's up against the steps.

Agressive? Dang! I got cherries instead of bigger tomatoes for two reasons: I thought they'd be faster to grow, and I thought the plants would be smaller. ha!

Thanks, you guys!

    Bookmark   July 4, 2014 at 11:51AM
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conchitaFL(10 Hutchinson Island)

Wild Cherry is a huge, sprawling plant. Here's a pic from an older GW thread (wild cherry is the one spilling out onto the ground:

Edit: Sorry, the original pic must be gone, but you can see the cached version in the link below.

Smaller plants would be Tumbling Tom, Cherry Falls, Tommy Toes, and a few others.

Here is a link that might be useful: original thread

This post was edited by conchitaFL on Fri, Jul 4, 14 at 12:00

    Bookmark   July 4, 2014 at 11:56AM
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