How Often Do Tomatoes Need Watering to Be Healthy?

Tomatoes are a great plant to include in your home garden because they are relatively easy to grow, they produce a lot of fruit, and fresh tomatoes are delicious. If you want successful tomato plants, there are a few things you really need to know, such as how often you should be watering tomatoes for healthy growth.

How often do tomatoes need to be watered? This is what I want to talk to you about, so that you will be prepared to grow your own plants and have a thriving garden!

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How Often Do Tomato Seedlings Need Watering?

As you might have guessed, tomato plants have vastly different needs at their different levels of growth. Seedlings need a different amount of water than growing or mature plants, so you have to take that into account when you start watering them. 

Whether you are growing tomatoes from seeds or from seedlings you bought, they need far less water than growth plants. You will want to make sure that the water does not disturb the plants or the seeds, as they are young and weak at this early stage. Seeds should be watered thoroughly, then covered and left for a few days to allow for germination and growth. Seedlings need water more often to help them grow, and should never be covered.

Here is a great video that tells you all about watering tomatoes from seeds:

How Often Should You Be Watering Tomatoes in Your Garden?

Tomato plants typically need 1 inch of water per week to be healthy. If you live in a drier area, this increases to 2 inches of water every week. If you’re not getting any rain, you will need to water the plants for yourself. When it is raining often in your area, you may not need to water at all, because you risk overwatering if you are adding water on top of rain-soaked soil.

Watering Tomatoes in Containers Versus an Outdoor Garden

Via Greenhousegrower.com

If you’re growing tomatoes in containers, you need to water differently than when you’re growing in and outdoor garden. Rain usually won’t reach containers (depending on where you place them), and the soil won’t be able to collect moisture from anywhere else around the plant’s roots, because it is isolated. Because of this, container tomatoes need more regular watering than garden plants. You may have to water them daily.

Check the soil in your container every day, and if it feels dry you should water the plant. When checking the soil, make sure to check at least 2 inches down instead of feeling only the top of the soil, as its far more important for tomato roots to get moisture than any other part of the plant.

What is the Best Way to Water Tomatoes? Tips for Watering Tomatoes!

When you go to start watering tomatoes, you should know how to get the best benefit from it. If you follow these tips, your tomatoes are likely to do well and get the most out of each watering session:

1.  ​Water in the morning

If you water in the heat of the day, more evaporation happens that will waste the water. In the evening, you risk the water sitting too long on the surface of the plant and making rot and disease more likely. Morning watering is ideal to let the water soak in fully and allow the plant to get the full benefits of the water. It will also dry up by the end of the day, reducing any risks of moisture-related issues.​

2.  Go for the roots, not the leaves​

Watering the leaves of tomato plants is useless and won’t help the plants grow properly. You may even lose more water this way or cause some harm to the plants if you always water on the leaves. Get the water as close to the roots as possible by watering the soil around the plants rather than the leaves.​

3.  Put indicator plants around your tomatoes​

Some small garden plants will react immediately if there is a lack of moisture in the soil they are planted in. These types of plants can be really useful when you’re growing tomatoes, because they will show you if your watering schedule is working or if you need to water more often.​

4.  Consider using mulch​

Mulch can help your plants retain their moisture for longer, making each watering session more effective. This is a great idea if you have to be away from your garden for a few days at a time or if you don’t have the time to devote a lot of attention to the plants.​

Conclusion​

Watering tomatoes is not a difficult task, but it’s best to learn how to do it right so you can get the best tomato plants possible each year. Proper watering will help the plants to grow, thrive, and produce fantastic fruits each time!​

Amelia
 

Amelia Robinson is a lover of plants and gardens, as well as an educator on this topic. It’s her goal to make sure that you get the chance to learn what you need to about gardening to succeed with your own home garden at the blog RobinsonLovePlants.com. You’re not going to find just a collection of basic articles about gardening here. Instead, she wants to answer the difficult questions for you. She tweets at @robinsonplants

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