Tomato growing myths to avoid that are ‘incredibly wrong’ – ‘will result in less fruit’


Year after year, countless gardeners rely on this versatile fruit to mark the arrival of spring and then top off summer with a taste that is not only memorable but also irreplaceable. But the tomato is also thought to be one of the most difficult plants to grow. While tomatoes do perform differently than other vegetable crops, becoming aware of the following common misconceptions will help set gardeners on the right path to getting the great harvest they’re after.

Gardening enthusiast Tanya Klien from Anta Plumbing, has shared her top six myths circulating social media that should be ignored when growing tomatoes.

1. Creating an aspirin spray makes plants pest resistant 

Perhaps gardeners have seen on social media, a hack telling them to smash a couple of aspirin tablets and mix them with water to create this amazing cure-all for their tomatoes. However, this is false.

Tanya claimed that this “myth” is rooted in statements made due to aspirin containing salicylic acid. Martha McBurney, a master gardener at Rhode Island University, tried using salicylic acid spray (not aspirin spray) on tomatoes and claimed to have glowing results.

However, the gardening enthusiast highlighted: “Aspirin contains this chemical but also contains other chemicals that make it toxic for tomatoes.”

READ MORE: Inside Alan Titchmarsh’s breathtaking Hampshire garden

2. Prevent blossom end rot by putting eggshells in the hole when planting tomatoes

It’s easy to see why this myth is constantly shared as blossom end rot is caused by a calcium deficiency and eggshells contain calcium. 

However, Tanya claimed: “The calcium needed for tomatoes is already in the soil, so the eggshells do nothing for the plant.”

What’s more, the calcium tomatoes need to grow healthy fruit are nearly always present in soil naturally and it’s uncommon for soil to be calcium deficient. 

3. Tomato plants need excessive amounts of water to produce juicy fruits.

The gardening pro claimed that this myth is “incredibly wrong” because too much water can “lead to diseases and cause root rot”. 

She urged: “You should water consistently but only every four to five days, and less during spring rains. 

“You should water deeply, or soak the roots each time you water. You will need to water longer as the roots grow throughout the season and the weather is drier.”

4. Tomato plants must be pruned to get good fruit

Despite many arguing that pruning is a must for the best possible tomatoes to be grown, Tanya claimed that it “isn’t essential to get good fruit”.

She added: “In fact, clipping the ‘suckers’ (the 45 degree angle between the plant stem and the leaf stalk) of a tomato plant will result in less fruit. 

READ MORE: ‘Easy’ steps to get your garden spring ready ‘in one weekend’

“You should pick them then and let them finish ripening in an indoor window to avoid the bugs beating you to them as they ripen.”

6. Epsom salt make for a good fertiliser

Epsom salts is essentially magnesium sulphate. So while plant growth does require magnesium for healthy growth, it requires so many other important nutrients which Epsom salts don’t provide.

The gardening enthusiast said: “This myth blossomed from the fact that tomato plants need magnesium to grow well and Epsom salts are magnesium sulphate. 

“However, the salts don’t provide enough of the other nutrients like nitrogen, potassium, and phosphorus needed to grow good tomato plants and could end up harming the plants.”



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