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» How to Grow Hanging Tomato Plants

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Cherry tomatoes are a great variety for growing upside down in hanging containers.
Cherry tomatoes are a great variety for growing upside down in hanging containers.
If you don’t have room for a garden but you want to grow some awesome tomato plants, you can make space in almost any outdoor place that gets sunlight and has room to hang a potted tomato plant!

Nothing is as tasty and fresh as home grown fresh tomatoes and you’ll enjoy ripe fruit from late spring through fall if you plant your hanging tomato plants in early spring.

Some people even claim that growing tomatoes “upside down” yields more fruit than planting tomato plants in a garden.

Read on to learn how to grow your own hanging tomato plants; it’s a quick and simple do-it-yourself project from which you’ll enjoy the fruits of your hour’s labor all summer long!

What You Need:

    A five gallon bucket with a hole in the bottom and some cord to hang is all you need to grow upside down tomato plants!
    A five gallon bucket with a hole in the bottom and some cord to hang is all you need to grow upside down tomato plants!

  • Five gallon bucket purchased at your home and garden center
  • Soil with the correct vitamins additives recommended for growing tomatoes (you will need one 40 pound bag of soil for each plant)
  • Tomato seedling (preferably a smaller variety of fruit like Roma)
  • Several feet of 1/8 inch cord
  • Utility knife

Instructions for Hanging Upside Down Tomato Plants:

  1. You can purchase your empty five gallon bucket at any home and garden center. A green bucket will be less ugly than the orange or white ones or you can paint your bucket whatever color you like. Be sure the inside of the bucket is clean, using warm water and mild dishwashing soap and then rinsing it well.
  2. Next, cut a hole about two to three inches in diameter in the center of the bottom with your utility knife.
  3. Lay several layers of newspaper in the bottom of the bucket and cut a small slit in the newspaper through the hole in the bucket; this will help hold the seedling in place when you initially hang the bucket.
  4. Drill four small holes evenly around the top edge of the bucket to attach your cord. You will want to measure the distance from the hook or other point you will hang the bucket from. Cut four lengths of cord and tie one end of each piece to each of the four holes.
  5. Turn the bucket on its side and carefully remove your tomato seedling from the container it came in and thread it through the slit in the newspaper so that the stem protrudes through the hole in the bucket and the roots are inside the bucket.
  6. Fill the bucket with the potting soil, which you can purchase along with your bucket at any home and garden center or local nursery; be sure it contains the right vitamin additives suggested for tomatoes. Be gentle to your seedling and try to allow it to protrude about three inches out of the hole in the bottom of your bucket.
  7. Cut several holes in the lid and place the lid on the bucket, taking care you do not harm your seedling in the process!
  8. After hanging for 75 days, your hanging tomato plant should be full and flowering and soon be ready to produce delicious, fresh tomato fruit.
    After hanging for 75 days, your hanging tomato plant should be full and flowering and soon be ready to produce delicious, fresh tomato fruit.

  9. Now you are ready to hang your bucket in a sunny place with plenty of room below for your tomato plant to grow down. Tomatoes need a lot of sun so do not hang it in a predominately shady spot; it should get direct sunlight at least fifty percent of the day.
  10. Keep your upside down tomato plant well watered and in about 50 to 75 days you should begin to see flowers and not long after you will have tomatoes. Let your tomatoes ripen on the vine and pick them as they become red and firm and ready to eat!

Hanging Tomato Plant Tips:

  • Plant tomatoes such as cherry or Roma varieties that have smaller fruit, which do best with the upside down hanging tomato growing method.
  • If you don’t like the look of a five gallon bucket, you can also purchase planters specifically made for hanging tomatoes.
  • Be sure to pick a solid place and use a good strong hook or other means from which to hang your tomato plants; each planter will weigh between 35 and 40 pounds.
  • Plant your hanging tomato plants in spring (between late April and early June depending on how far north you are located) so that you can enjoy fresh tomatoes all through the growing season.

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