How much water do tomato plants need? ‘Good rule of thumb’ to follow weekly

Alan Titchmarsh gives advice on how to plant tomatoes

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Tomato plants are easy to grow from seed, and many gardeners will likely be transplanting them outside as the risk of frost passes. However, with the warmer weather comes some slight changes to your regular watering schedule.

Tomato plants typically need to be watered once a day. But experts from Espoma explain: “As temperatures increase, you might need to water tomato plants twice a day.”

Regardless of how often you are watering your tomato plants, the key thing is that they are getting enough water.

How much water do tomato plants need each day?

Garden tomatoes typically require one to two inches of water a week.

Tomato plants grown in containers may need more water than garden tomatoes.

This is because the soil in containers heats up faster, leading to more water evaporation.

Experts from Gardening Know How state: “A good rule of thumb is to supply water once every two or three days at the height of summer.

“Remember that water supplied by Mother Nature counts towards watering tomato plants in the garden.

“Once the weather cools and fruit has set, scale back watering to once a week.”

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When is the best time to water tomatoes?

Many experts recommend watering your tomatoes in the morning.

Doing so gives your plants plenty of time to dry out.

An expert from Swan House said: “This will allow any moisture that makes its way to the leaves an opportunity to dry before the heat of the day, and that can help to prevent diseases and burning of the plants.”

Watering in the morning can also help gardeners stay on schedule, and make it part of their daily routine.

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How to tell if you are overwatering your tomato plant

Overwatered tomato plants may develop wilted or yellowed stems and leaves.

In some cases, the leaves may also develop bumps or fall off entirely.

You might also be able to tell whether the plant is severely overwatered by looking at its roots.

The roots may turn dark in colour or develop a slimy coating.

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