watering outdoor tomatoes

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jambop

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watering outdoor tomatoes
« on: January 27, 2019, 12:56 »
There is a school of thought down here in France that you do not water your tomato plants other than right after planting them out. The thought is that if you water your tomatoes you get fruit that is less flavoursome and water filled. I have been growing down here for quite a while now and although I do water my tomatoes I do not do it regularly. This year however I am going to lay some sort of irrigation pipe down my rows and water them regularly. My reason being that if they are kept better they will resist desease better and the fruit will grow more evenly but mainly becasue I cannot imagine how depriving a fruiting plant of water is going to improve the fruit quality... anybody got a view on this subject?

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mumofstig

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Re: watering outdoor tomatoes
« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2019, 13:39 »
I think it is overwatering that causes loss of flavour, they still need some to grow  :lol: With irrigation pipes it is easy too leave them on too long and overwater. Once your system is in place check the rate that water is coming out, by dripping into a bottle or jug, to work out how long you need it left on for to deliver a couple of litres a day, maybe a little more when it is really hot.
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JayG

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Re: watering outdoor tomatoes
« Reply #2 on: January 27, 2019, 16:25 »
I used a micro-irrigation system in my GH last year - takes a bit of time to set up, especially adjusting each individual sprinkler to get the required flow rate (2 of the 15 were watering the cukes which I reckoned needed more water than the tomatoes.) Nearly got it right, although the beefsteak toms did initially get blossom end rot until I upped their share.

Probably simpler outdoors - it's still going to be mainly a matter of trial and error, but there should be a greater margin for error for plants in soil rather than just compost.
Sow your seeds, plant your plants. What's the difference? A couple of weeks or more when answering possible queries!

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Dev

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Re: watering outdoor tomatoes
« Reply #3 on: January 27, 2019, 19:18 »
I think a lot of it comes down to what your local weather is doing. In the south of France you probably get a lot more sun than the north of England (you lucky b). Last year we had lots of sun, not much rain, so I watered once a week whilst fruit was setting and initially growing, also mulched, and got more tomatoes than me and the neighbours could use. I cut down the watering towards September and pinched out the growing tips, to encourage the plants to ripen what was on them and I was still picking them in early November. No blight either. I intend to do the same this year, but who knows what weather the gods will send us?

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jambop

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Re: watering outdoor tomatoes
« Reply #4 on: February 04, 2019, 23:20 »

Well I am going to give some regular watering when the dry spell comes along, as it always does , mainly because I think it should keep the plants growing at an even rate. There are loads of growers down here that just plant their tomatoes and forget them and wait until they fruit.

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snowdrops

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Re: watering outdoor tomatoes
« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2019, 09:06 »
On the same track I hope, I am a firm believer of getting water to the roots with as little evaporation as possible. I sink a 2 litre bottle in next to plants with the tops taken off & the bottom cut off, I then water into the bottle, this way you need to apply less water in my experience,see there was a link to your original post 😊
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missmoneypenny

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Re: watering outdoor tomatoes
« Reply #6 on: February 11, 2019, 19:46 »
I donít really see how you could get away with not watering down in the SW of France. Heck I couldnít get away with it in London. I do withhold water about a week before picking though, if I remember, to enhance the flavour.

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goose

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Re: watering outdoor tomatoes
« Reply #7 on: February 13, 2019, 01:13 »
has anyone tried that hozelock watering trough for tomato grow bags? says it gives 2  weeks of water, looks like it has wicks going up to the plants. ?

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Goosegirl

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Re: watering outdoor tomatoes
« Reply #8 on: February 13, 2019, 14:01 »
I think you could rig one up like that by lining a long plastic greenhouse tray with capillary matting, then cut some more matting into long strips, make some holes in the bottom of the grow-bag, insert one end of the strip into each hole, then place the bag onto the lined tray making sure the strips are evenly distributed, then fill the tray with water.
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