Don’t adjust your screen, you have read that correctly. Growing happy, healthy tomatoes is possible, even without an outdoor plot of land. There are plenty of ways to grow tomatoes without a garden, and one of these four methods is sure to suit your individual space and needs.
Garden-fresh tomatoes are so juicy and flavorful that they will ruin grocery-store tomatoes for you forever. The good news is that you can grow your own delicious garden tomatoes without a garden at all! These methods all take up very little space and will yield a huge harvest of tomatoes, no garden bed needed.
In a Hanging Basket
Plant a small cascading tomato variety in a hanging basket to encourage them to tumble over the edge as they grow. Hang somewhere that gets 6 hours of full sun per day. Choose specific varieties, such as Tumbler tomatoes, that are bred for hanging baskets. Larger tomato varieties will be too heavy for a hanging basket to support.
In a Container or Self-Watering Pot
Choose determinate (bush-variety) tomatoes that are small, such as cherry or dwarf slicers for growing in a container. Add a cage or other support when you plant the tomatoes. If you wait to add the support later, it might disrupt the plant’s growth. Remember that any plant growing in a container is going to dry out quicker than in the garden, so monitor the soil and water regularly. Self-watering pots will ensure that your plants don’t dry out.
In a Grow Bag
Heat-loving plants like tomatoes do great in grow bags because you can easily move the bags around by the handles to make sure your tomatoes are in the sunniest areas every day. The bags also fit a lot more soil than other containers of the same size because of the shape and thin material of the burlap, which means you can grow more in a small space.
Plant tomatoes deep into a grow bag only half filled with soil. As the plant grows, top the bag up with more soil to bury the lower stems and create a stronger root system. Keep topping up the soil throughout the season.
For more on grow bags, see this post.
In an Upside-Down Planter
Again, choose small varieties bred especially for containers as large varieties will be too heavy for this growing method. Choose a location that gets plenty of full sunlight—upside-down tomatoes will do best with 8-12 hours of sun each day.
Gently position your tomato plant in the upside-down planter so that the stem and leaves stick out through the bottom hole and add moistened soil into the container so that it covers the tomato plant’s root ball. Use a soil mix specifically for container gardens.
Tomatoes in upside-down planters will try to curve and grow upwards, which will result in stems breaking from the weight of the fruit or a strong gust of wind. To prevent this, position a stake so that it pokes out of the bottom hole where the tomato is growing and train the plant along the stake as it grows. Get more details on growing tomatoes upside down in this post.