December 14, 2017

How to Prune Tomato Plants

The natural vigor and hardiness of tomatoes ensures a successful and bountiful harvest. However, the rapid and shooting growth of a healthy tomato plant can sometimes lead to problems.

Why prune tomato plants?

Tomatoes, especially healthy ones, can grow sprawling into the ground, thus occupying a significant space of your garden. Pruning tomatoes can help keep them in a confined area in your garden. Aside from saving you garden space, tomato pruning can also:

  • Pruning TomatoMaximize the photosynthesis process
  • Minimize the risk of plant disease
  • Protect your tomato plants from pest infestation
  • Produce healthier and larger fruits

How to prune tomatoes

If you feel that your plants need pruning, then here are the basic steps on how to prune tomato plants:

  1. Remove or cut off all stems and leaves below the first cluster of tomato flowers. Your aim here is to have a single-stemmed tomato plant; this ensures that nutrients are sent straight to the fruits and are not wasted in unwanted growing parts.
  2.  Check the stem of your tomato; make sure that you have at most 5 fruit-bearing trusses growing from it. You should pinch out all other shoots growing from the stem, leaving the terminal shoot or the top shoot intact.
  3.  Remove leaves. As the tomato matures, the lower leaves, by natural process, will begin to wilt. Remove them as soon as you see them to keep your tomato plant looking fresh and to help ward off diseases and pests.
  4. Top your tomato plant. This is the process of removing the tomato’s terminal shoot. The purpose of this is to get the best harvest out of the last season growth.

Learning how to prune tomatoes is not really that hard. Just follow the steps provided above, and you’ll have healthy tomato plants for harvest.

For more info on how to prune tomato plants watch this great video!

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