Germination Temperature (Optimum): 16 to 29 °C Max.: 35 °C Min.: 10 °C
Days to Germinate: 7 to 10
Sowing Depth: ¼ to ½ in.
Indicative Avg. Plant Height: 3 ft.
Spacing In Row: 24 in.
Spacing Between Rows: 3 to 4 ft.
Avg. Days to Maturity: 65 to 70
Notes: Tender plants, cannot tolerate extreme cold, heat or drought. Avoid using fresh manure as it causes lush foliage with few ripe fruits. Instead use generous amounts of well-rotten cow manure, or compost, and crushed eggshells at the bottom for calcium. Heavy phosphorus needs. Varieties that are determinate stop growing when they reach a certain height, usually 3-4 ft. Indeterminate varieties never stop growing and can reach heights of 6 ft. Determinate types are usually early producers while indeterminate types are usually late fruiters. For container culture, choose only determinate types. Tomatoes will continually bear fruit once they reach maturity; they are among the most abundant producers for the amount of space they take up. As soon as the first blossoms appear they should be mulched and top- dressed. The more light they get, the better they will grow, needing at least 6-8 hours of sunlight daily. Cool and rainy weather will cause the plants to grow sluggishly. Determinate bush varieties may be staked, should not be pruned. Caging without pruning delays ripening, reduces fruit size but increases production, prevents sunburn and reduces fruit cracking and rotting. Staking and pruning produces earlier larger fruits. Large-fruited varieties with low fruit set and high sugar content are most likely to crack. To reduce cracking avoid heavy watering and large fluctuations in day/night temp. and maintain adequate calcium in soil. More than 100 different chemical compounds account for the complex tomato taste. Lycopene is a red carotenoid pigment found in mature tomatoes raw or cooked. Reddest, ripest tomatoes have the most lycopene. High lycopene intake sharply reduces risk of prostate cancer in men and breast cancer in women. For all tomatoes, days to maturity shown are from date of transplanting. Emergence takes 43 days at 10°C, 14 days at 15°C, 8 days at 20°C and 6 days at 25-30°C. 98% normal seedlings at 15 °C but only 83% at 30°C.