Potting Mix for Tomato Planters


Every time you go to the garden centre, you are reminded that the “best” commercial potting mix for tomatoes (Solanum lycopersicum) has quite a few rivals from which to choose. If you’ve had even one growing season that was fruitful, you might be itching to give those commercial potting mixes a run for the title, and why shouldn’t you? You have sufficient knowledge about growing tomatoes to be considered “dangerous,” which means that you are knowledgeable, and you have sufficient self-assurance to try new things. It is the perfect combination to make the ideal potting mix for the container crop that will be grown this season.

What to Add to Potting Soil for Tomatoes

Commercial potting mixes may be more convenient, but the convenience comes at a cost. To put this another way, the cost of a pre-packaged mix will run you more money than the cost of the individual components needed to make your own tomato potting soil at home. In addition, according to Tomato Dirt, commercial mixes frequently include an excessive amount of peat moss or loam, which results in a thick consistency that can make drainage difficult. In addition to this, it’s possible that you’ve observed an excessive amount of pine bark in commercial mixes. However, it’s possible that you haven’t connected the dots and realised that you’ll need additional nitrogen (fertiliser) to make up for its presence.

According to the University of Florida IFAS Extension, if you are aware that a “super soil” formula for tomatoes should perform a few things really well, then you will be able to avoid these potential dangers. It must to promote the movement of air and water, be able to retain nutrients, and drain well.

In principle, there are potentially hundreds of different handmade mixtures that are capable of achieving these objectives. Consider using a straight 1-1-1 mixture, which consists of one part inorganic matter (such as peat moss or peat coir) to bulk it up, one part inorganic matter (such as perlite, sand, or vermiculite) for drainage, and one part organic matter (such as compost, garden loam, or humus) for nutrients and water retention. This recipe is easy to mix as well as easy to remember.

Make Your Super Soil Recipe for Tomatoes

It is possible that having some say in the final combination of ingredients may prove to be advantageous. In this manner, you will be able to tailor your purchase to the inventory that is currently available at the shop. You also have the ability to compare different ingredients if you make notes on your recipe and later find that you need to make adjustments to a different version of the dish. It’s possible that you’ll see some tiny deviations.

Find a decent spot to work outside for the time being, and arrange all of your necessary equipment close by. You’ll need gloves, a shovel or trowel, a big bucket or tub for mixing, and your potting mix components. Put on a dust mask so that you do not breathe in any of the particles, especially those that come from the perlite and vermiculite. Peat moss or peat coir should be pre-soaked in water at a ratio of two parts water to one part peat moss or peat coir until all of the water is absorbed. Include the remaining inorganic material (the perlite, sand or vermiculite or a combination of these). After that, put in the organic material (the compost, garden loam or humus).

As the components combine, you should determine whether you will use the potting mix right now or put it aside for a later time. If the former is the case, apply a quantity of fertiliser with a controlled release that is proportional to the size of your container (or containers).

Consider Some Potting Mix Tips

Most compact tomato varieties should fit easily into a container that is between 14 and 20 inches in diameter. According to Clemson Cooperative Extension, another container that may be used is a 5-gallon barrel that has had holes punched in the base of it. Tomato cultivars that are expected to reach heights of more than 2 feet should have a cage placed around them. As the fruit continues to grow larger and heavier, the cage will continue to support it.

It is recommended that you prepare your potting mix during the interseasonal break rather of waiting until the spring season has arrived to do so. There are advantages to doing so. For one thing, you will most likely have a number of spring gardening tasks to complete all at once, and making potting mix is something that can be done well in advance of the planting season. Therefore, in the spring, when you are ready to plant, the mix will be ready and waiting for you, and you will be able to immediately begin planting your tomato seedlings in it.

It is recommended that you prepare enough of the potting mix so that it can be stored in a plastic container with a lid. You are able to remove some whenever it is necessary. Be warned, however, that your neighbours may start knocking on your door to ask for financial contributions. It’s possible that word will soon spread that you have the best tomato potting mix in the area.