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Growing Tomato

Jan F M A M J J A S O N Dec
              S S T T T

(Best months for growing Tomato in Australia - temperate regions)

S = Plant undercover in seed trays. T = Plant out (transplant) seedlings.

August: Frost tender. Start undercover

  • Grow in seed trays, and plant out in 4-6 weeks. Sow seed at a depth approximately three times the diameter of the seed. Best planted at soil temperatures between 16°C and 35°C. (Show °F/in)
  • Space plants: 40 - 60 cm apart
  • Harvest in 8-17 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow in same bed): Asparagus, Chervil,Carrot, Celery, Chives, Parsley, Marigold, Basil
  • Avoid growing in same bed: Rosemary, Potatoes, Fennel
  • a)  Seedlings
    a) Seedlings
  • b) 6 weeks old
    b) 6 weeks old
  • c) Tomato Roma (acid free)
    c) Tomato Roma (acid free)


There is nothing like the taste of a freshly picked tomato, warm from the sunshine. In the smallest of gardens or even an apartment with a window-box, it is worth growing at least one tomato plant for the pleasure it will give you. They will grow in pots, troughs or even hanging baskets.

Tomatoes should be grown in shelter or under cover in cool climates.

Tomatoes need feeding. In a garden bed, compost and mulching will produce a crop from one or two plants. In containers, use some suitable long term fertiliser pellets or feed regularly when you water. Feeding also improves the flavour of the fruit.

When you plant out, put the seedlings in a deep holes, up to the top set of leaves. The covered stems will put out extra roots and you will have a stronger, healthier plant.

There are many different varieties of tomatoes but they all have one of two growth habits.


Compact bush growth, stops at a specific height and useful for containers. If left without supporting stakes, they will form a dense carpet which excludes weeds and keeps the soil cool and damp.


Will continue growing a main stem, or vine until stopped by frost. The majority of heirloom tomatoes are indeterminate.

Both types need stakes to give them some support otherwise they will sprawl across the garden.

Varieties include Acid-free, Bush, Tall, Cherry, Yellow and many others.

Culinary hints - cooking and eating Tomato

Use in sauces, with fried meals, in sandwiches. Can be frozen whole or in pieces.

Your comments and tips

02 Jul 16, Godwin Dimech (Australia - cool/mountain climate)
For those who have trouble planting tomato, dry tomato onto hand paper towel space out the seed when dry close to end of year cut every dry seed without having to move them and plantin a deep tray about 4 inches under the house or in a shed keep the tray moist see how u go and let me know. When it comes to veges or summer fruit I have many ideas keeep lin touch and see if I can help anyone
30 Apr 16, Lesley (Australia - temperate climate)
Hi I am getting oxo heart tomato seeds is it to early to put seeds in and grow them,under a patio I am south of Perth Cheers lesley
30 Mar 16, Mike (Australia - temperate climate)
Feed with nitrogen rich fert. You can use store bought liquid fert. for quick fix or dig in manure around the base of each plant. There are lots of ways to help boost the minerals in soil, Google is your friend.
14 Mar 16, philip hope (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Bright yellow leaves at the tip of the plant what is the soil deficient in? I live just outside of Gympie
28 Apr 16, Tania (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Hi Phillip, yellow leaves tend to mean you need more calcium in the soil.... try some chicken manure.
10 Mar 16, Dave McGinlay (Australia - temperate climate)
I have an amazing Roma Tomato plant that is now in it;s third flowering & has produced over 200 tomatoes over the past 18 months(I just trim off the dead foliage) Lately some of the fruit has a very small round hole in them & when cut open reveals a heap of tiny eggs. Could this be some kind of wasp.? I am picking them a bit earlier now as the culprit can;t seem to put a hole in them if they are slightly unripe. Regards Dave McGinlay
15 Mar 16, Jacqueline Comber (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Sounds very much like fruit fly...we can't grow in Sumner because of these.
08 Feb 16, Max (Australia - temperate climate)
my Oxheart tomatoes have worms inside them but no entry point how is this possible. It's frustrating as I'm throwing out a lot. Is there something I can do to avoid this /
09 Feb 16, Cecile (South Africa - Summer rainfall climate)
If I remember correctly, moths lay their eggs in the flowers of the tomato plant, so as the fruit develops from the flower, the eggs mature inside the growing tomato
29 Jan 16, Robyn (Australia - sub-tropical climate)
Should I pick the flowers off my tomato plants while the plants are still small?
Showing 1 - 10 of 355 comments

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This planting guide is a general reference intended for home gardeners. We recommend that you take into account your local conditions in making planting decisions. Gardenate is not a farming or commercial advisory service. For specific advice, please contact your local plant suppliers, gardening groups, or agricultural department. The information on this site is presented in good faith, but we take no responsibility as to the accuracy of the information provided.

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