Seed pack included with every book

Planting Tips

Follow the instructions on the back of the Tommy’s Back seed pack.

More background on tomato growing

No home vegetable garden is complete without a good crop of tomatoes. The tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum) is a warm-season crop and one of the most popular, easily grown vegetables in the country. Once you’ve tasted a fresh-picked tomato from your own garden, you’ll wonder what those bland, waxy, tasteless red orbs are that you’ve been getting from your grocery store produce section.

Nutrition Facts

According to the USDA, tomatoes are low in Sodium, and very low in Saturated Fat and Cholesterol. They are also a good source of Vitamin E (alpha-Tocopherol), Thiamine, Niacin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Magnesium, Phosphorus and Copper, and a very good source of Dietary Fiber, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Vitamin K, Potassium and Manganese.

Tomato Plants

To start your own tomato plants from seed, plant the seeds in a light, sterile seed-starter type soil mixture at least 4 to 7 weeks before they are to be planted outdoors in your garden. Be sure to moisten the soil mix before filling the peat pots or containers. Sow your seeds ¼” deep and water gently. When you see the little green sprouts, the plants will need a very sunny spot to grow in – a bright windowsill, or under a flourescent light. Visit them regularly to be sure they don’t dry out, but don’t overwater. When they are about 2” tall, check to see if they are crowded. It’s OK to move some to their own pots.

One week before the tomatoes are to be planted outside, harden them off by placing the potted plants in your garden to gradually expose them to increased amounts of sunlight. Leave them out for just a few hours at first, then take them back inside. Then the next day, leave them out a few more hours. Do this for one week, increasing the time in the sun a little each day. And then you are ready to place them safely in the ground!

(To make sure you know the right time for planting tomatoes outdoors, go to the Last Freeze Lookup page at this link and enter your zipcode.

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