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Garden Help: Tomato Spacing/Carrots Between?

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  • Garden Help: Tomato Spacing/Carrots Between?

    Getting ready to put out the garden tomorrow. I'm still a very beginning gardener. I have seeds for most but have some actual tomato plants because I remember someone saying those were pains to start from seeds.

    Question: How should I space the tomatoes? All the seeds have recommended spacing on the packets, but the flats of tomato plants have nothing. I've never had tomatoes before. How big are they?

    Also, I seem to remember hearing once that you should plant carrots in between tomatoes for good carrot crops. I have carrot seeds (note the HR aspect of this thread ). Anybody tried putting carrots with tomatoes? Better with or alone? And if with, in rows between the tomato plant rows, or within the row with them, like T C T C?

  • #2
    What variety are the tomatoes? Some sprawl, some are more upright. Are you planning on caging them?


    • Original Poster

      These are Better Boy tomatoes. I will be caging them when they grow some.


      • #4
        Originally posted by dressagetraks View Post
        These are Better Boy tomatoes. I will be caging them when they grow some.
        Blech. I'm an heirloom girl myself.

        Since you're caging them (might as well just plop them in the middle of the cage right now, it's a PAIN trying to wrangle a grown tomato plant into a cage!) you can put them basically as close together as you want. Maybe leave a foot between the edges of the cages, to make sure sunlight gets in and more importantly, that your hand can get in.

        You can plop the carrots in almost anywhere, they'll do fine and don't need to be in rows. It's easier to put them in rows, however, simply so that you can keep track of them/thin them, and keep weeding to a minimum. Just place them where they won't be shaded by the grown tomato plants for most of the day.


        • #5
          I would keep the area 1' around your tomatoes clear of other plants, even hybrids can be a little sensitive and you don't want anything holding moisture to them.

          Basil actually makes a better companion, but you don't need to grow vegetables in rows (it's not a rule!) and carrots can do just fine sort of sprinkled about. It's most important you get the carrots individually separated because they will crowd and you'll get tiny deformed carrots (it maybe a better plan to cut back some carrots after they start growing - the seeds are so small!)

          Keep them 2' apart, water gently at the roots, don't splash dirt up onto the leaves/stem/fruit (drip irrigation is best) and don't keep them too wet or two dry .

          Good luck!
          "For some people it's not enough to just be a horse's bum, you have to be sea biscuit's bum" -anon.
          Nes' Farm Blog ~ DesigNes.ca
          Need You Now Equine


          • #6
            I cut my gardening eye teeth on "Square Foot Gardening" and a square foot (1x1) will take one tomato plant and 9 carrots (give a carrot about 3 or 4" square).

            BTW it's an excellent book and an excellent system IMO.

            He is total garbage! Quick! Hide him on my trailer (Petstorejunkie).


            • #7
              Yep, 'maters go about every 1' apart, carrots about 3". Make sure you have deep enough soil for your carrots - they need deep, loose soil to grow properly.

              SFG is excellent stuff!!

              For the tomatoes, MOST definitely get your support cage/stake/whatever in when you plant the plant. Of not, as said, trying to get around grown limbs is a pita, and you risk damaging roots.

              Also, when you plant the tomatoe plants, plant them *deep*, so that only the top leaves are showing. Tomatoes are wonderful things in that any stem in contact or close to the ground will grow roots, and the more roots, the better. Dig deep, plant deep, and pinch off lower leaves and fill in more soil as the stem grows. It will pay off in spades later
              The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances. - ET


              • #8
                Tomatoes are so tough that you can literally break the root ball off at the stem, plant said stem in the dirt, water several times a day, and still get tomatoes. Ask me how I know
                Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans


                • #9
                  There are a number of crops that can be planted with tomatoes. First, go with carrots because they are efficient in sharing the space. It is advisable to plant carrots while tomatoes are small. You can also pick plants that belong to the onion family because they emit a pungent odor that deters insect pests. Spinach or lettuce is also good tomato companion because they are small and grows better during summer while tomatoes are shading them.
                  parenting : A mother understands what a child does not say