About Greenhouse Tomatoes
One of the best things about greenhouses is that you can grow crops out of season. In a greenhouse, growers can lengthen the growing season of the tomato plant by several months.
These are a few things you need to know about starting a tomato greenhouse:
- Do you want a high tunnel greenhouse or another model?
- You will need to decide how big of a greenhouse you want and how many tomato plants you want to grow
- What variety of tomato plants is going to be best for your greenhouse?
- Spending more on upfront costs will save you from maintenance costs and problems in the long-run.
There are many things to consider when going into the industry of growing fruits and vegetables, but Prospiant is here to help every step of the way.
Growing Tomatoes in a Greenhouse
A tomato greenhouse gives you the opportunity to plant and grow more tomatoes under one roof than possible in a garden of outdoor tomatoes. Growers have the opportunity to have a two-crop rotation where you begin planting your fruit in June or July and then seed again in December or January. This process is the best way to get the most fruit out of your greenhouse. A higher density of produce does not mean sacrificing fruit size or good flavor.
The reason many other growers have decided that tomatoes and other vegetables should be planted in greenhouses is that they can provide the best produce ecosystem. You can avoid problems like blossom end rot when you can control the environment. Growing tomatoes is made easy with a greenhouse that goes above and beyond the real environmental conditions that are dependent on seasons.
How to Choose Varieties for Greenhouse Growing
There is a long list of tomato varieties to choose from for your greenhouse production. A tomato plant can either be determinate or indeterminate. Determinate tomato plants grow to a predetermined height and are more compact. Indeterminate plants grow larger; some can reach eight to ten feet tall, these plants will need to be staked or caged for support due to their height. Different varieties can be grown next to each other and not have an effect on each other’s growth or yield.
What Makes a Variety Right for the Greenhouse?
Which kind of variety you should grow in your greenhouse is dependent on what you want to achieve. At Prospiant our produce-growing specialists can help growers decide if they want the most yielding tomato variety, a variety that will provide the tastiest fruit, the plant that will produce for the longest amount of time, or whatever they have in mind.
Taking Care of Your Greenhouse Tomato Plant
The process of taking care of your greenhouse tomato plants may differ from other crops that can be grown in a greenhouse.
Here are some steps for taking care of your growing tomatoes:
- Make sure your watering system is working properly and that it won’t over or under-water your soil/plants.
- Have lighting installed by Prospiant to ensure all of your plants are getting an equal amount of sunlight.
- Use Prospiant’s environmental controls to keep track of the temperature and humidity levels.
- Monitor the air circulation in the greenhouse to make sure all of the plants are getting even air flow and none will become dried out.
- To hand-pollinate your tomato plant, you can place an electric toothbrush behind the open flowers and allow it to gently shake the plant. This loosens the pollen in the flower and causes pollination.
This can all sound time consuming, but our Prospiant specialists go to great lengths to be there for you every step of the way. We will help you succeed in design, installation, integration, operations, maintenance, and expansion.
Things to Know Before You Grow
When building a commercial greenhouse, you need to research all of the municipal laws that will need to be followed. You may need certain licenses and will need to know the land requirements and zoning laws. One of the licenses that you may need is an irrigation license because greenhouse crops need access to a large amount of good-quality water. At Prospiant, our greenhouses use less water, fewer fertilizers and pesticides, while providing you with better crops.
Yes, you can control the growth of your tomatoes better in a greenhouse because you are able to make the environment that they grow in. You can create the perfect environment by adjusting temperature and humidity levels that will allow the plant to grow at its best.
Yes, you can produce tomatoes year-round in a greenhouse. Many growers do a two-crop rotation where they have a fall crop that is seeded in one of the summer months and then a spring crop that is seeded in one of the winter months. This method is great for commercial growers who want to get the maximum amount of crops that they can out of their greenhouse.
A greenhouse needs to be at a certain temperature for tomatoes to survive. In an unheated greenhouse, tomatoes can survive at a minimum temperature of 28°F (-2°C). Though one of the most beneficial parts about a greenhouse is that you can control the temperature that your tomatoes grow in, so having an HVAC system in your greenhouse is ideal.