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Growing Outdoor Tomato Varieties

Tomato plants which will survive outdoors in the UK

Growing Outdoor Tomato Varieties

fruits | grow your own

The British climate is not ideally suited to the growing of tomatoes except in a greenhouse or a polytunnel. There are however some varieties of tomato plant which will produce good crops of delicious tomatoes despite the cool and often damp climate.

Note that tomatoes grown outdoors tend to be tastier and have thinner skins than those grown under glass.

Buying outdoor tomato plants

Before listing some of the best varieties of outdoor tomatoes it is worth considering the growing site. Tomatoes like as much sunshine as possible and as much shelter as possible from the wind (often a difficult combination to find!). Meet those requirements and you are in for a bumper crop this summer. Tomatoes planted against a south facing wall or fence will fare the best.

While cordon tomatoes are typically grown in the greenhouse (due to lack of ground space), bush tomatoes are better suited to outdoor growing. Outdoor tomatoes can be grown directly in the ground (humus-rich well drained slightly acidic soil), or in pots or growing bags.

Outdoor tomato seeds should be planted under glass (or indoors) in early April, hardened off toward the end of May, and planted out in early June after any risk of frost has passed. The first tomatoes should be ready for picking by the middle of August and the plants will continue cropping if weather permits until late into September.

Outdoor Tomato Bush Varieties

Red Alert outdoor suitable tomato plants and seeds

There are now many varieties of outdoor tomato bush plants. Red Alert (pictured above) produces the most delicious small tomatoes early, while French Cross produces very large tomatoes, and Sleaford Abundance a heavy crop overall. Sigmabush copes well even when the sun does not shine, and Sub-Arctic Plenty produces early tomatoes even in the cooler northern reaches of the UK. There are suitable tomato plants for virtually any size or type of garden or even for hanging baskets or house plant pots.

Buy Outdoor Tomato Seeds and Plants

Click here to purchase outdoor tomato plants and seeds.

Article Published: 11:56, 25th May 2010

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