Keep your garden growing - see what to plant right now

Growing Tomato

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

(Best months for growing Tomato in New Zealand - cool/mountain regions)

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

  • 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 61°F and 95°F. (Show °C/cm)
  • Space plants: 16 - 24 inches apart
  • Harvest in 8-17 weeks.
  • Compatible with (can grow beside): Asparagus, Chervil,Carrot, Celery, Chives, Parsley, Marigold, Basil
  • Avoid growing close to: Rosemary, Potatoes, Fennel, Cucumber
  • a)  Seedlings
  • b) 6 weeks old
  • 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

14 Sep 19, Allan Clarke (Australia - temperate climate)
If you freeze tomatoes, then thaw them out, they go all soggy, I believe.
31 Jul 19, Yvette Botha (South Africa - Summer rainfall climate)
Which variety tomato will grow best in the Free State
28 Jul 19, Jameson Ngcobo (South Africa - Humid sub-tropical climate)
To treat tomatoes from pets like aphids and red spider. Red spider can finish your plant without even noticing them because they are very small. Your tomatoe leaves becomes yellow and the whole plant ends up dying. Potatoes also have the same problem. You may think they are getting ready. Just use Oleum. It is very good.
22 Jul 19, Gerald Kent (USA - Zone 10a climate)
What is the best tasting tomato to grow in zone 10a in Westlake Village California, area code 91361
23 May 19, Brod (New Zealand - temperate climate)
How can i grow Tomatoes all year round in CHB Do i need a Greenhouse?????? In winter we get regular frosts
23 May 19, Liz (New Zealand - temperate climate)
Tomatoes are frost tender, so yes you need some sort of protection for them, if you want to grow all the year round.
22 May 19, Nkhangweleni (South Africa - Humid sub-tropical climate)
I want to know about how we can treat the diseases or just give me the name of medicine that can be used?
21 Apr 19, Geoffrey Wilson (Australia - tropical climate)
I have tried to grow tomatoes at Palm Beach Gold Coast for many years. They will grow nicely up to when they start to form fruit and then the bush starts dying off from the bottom up until there are no leaves left I have asked so many people about this but no one can give me an answer Maybe you can give me some suggestions of what is wrong
02 Jun 19, Ruby (Australia - arid climate)
I have grown tomatoes for many years on the coast and now in Hervey Bay. Forget growing in summer. It's too humid. The soil temp at night is too hot and too humid. I start on April once night temps ate under 29 deg. Back off on watering too much and less nitrogen. Plant deep, cut off lower leaves and talk to them!!! Hope this helps.
03 May 19, Green thumb (Australia - temperate climate)
Try a new area. Dig the soil and add compost/manure or fertiliser. Add some Epsom salts to the soil - buy at supermarket. As the plants grow up to 600-800mm tall, pick off the bottom few leaves and suckers. Always leave the top 6-8-10 leaves. Tie plants to a stake each 300mm in an 8 configuration around the plant and pole. Water in the morning and water at the soil level. When a tomato plant grows and you prick fruit, the bottom leaves die. Little plants need a little water each day or two - big plants need a good deep watering 2-3 times a week, unless it is summer they may need more. My toms are 1.8m high, green as anything and not a dead leaf yet. Fruit developing.
Showing 1 - 10 of 606 comments

Ask a question or post a comment or advice about Tomato

Please provide your email address if you are hoping for a reply

All comments are reviewed before displaying on the site, so your posting will not appear immediately

Gardenate App

Put GardenGrow in your pocket. Get our app for iPhone, iPad or Android to add your own plants and record your plantings and harvests

Planting Reminders

Join 30,000+ gardeners who rely on GardenGrow. Subscribe to our free planting reminders email newsletter

Home | Vegetables and herbs to plant | Climate zones | About GardenGrow | Contact us | Privacy Policy

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. GardenGrow 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.
We cannot help if you are overrun by giant slugs.