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General discussion regarding the techniques and methods used to successfully grow tomato plants in containers.

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Old January 7, 2017   #1
ChefBertMor
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Default New containers, how to calculte resevoir

It really pays to be a chef. I get to score lots of food grade containers for free.



This is 12.25 gal. So, how large a reservoir do I make? Can this handle 2 plants? Or should be conservative and stick with one.

I also have read several different strategies on aeration and drainage holes. What methods do you use and why? Any other comments?

C=:-)
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Old January 7, 2017   #2
Worth1
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I would stick with one plant if they are full sized plants.
Worth
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Old January 7, 2017   #3
ChefBertMor
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I would stick with one plant if they are full sized plants.
Worth
I was leaning that way, but I thought with EB taking two plants and this is about the same size, I thought I might gwt away with two.
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Old January 7, 2017   #4
Worth1
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Quote:
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I was leaning that way, but I thought with EB taking two plants and this is about the same size, I thought I might gwt away with two.
Don't take my word for it by all means.
I have just know that ten gallons is about the limit for a full sized plant.
You can only water the soup down so much until it stops tasting like soup.

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Old January 7, 2017   #5
Ricky Shaw
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A beautiful large container with usable components. Sugar plums to seasoned scavengers.
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Old January 7, 2017   #6
ginger2778
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My Earthboxes have a 3 gallon reservoir and 15 gallon upper potting mix chamber. Also I have 11- 7gallon pots with tall healthy (well 10 are healthy) plants in them. That one guy got too much water because of proximity to a neihhbor's sprinkler, but I moved him and we'll see if he snaps out of it!

I still would only put one plant in a 12 gallon, but it's going to be a very happy plant.
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Old January 7, 2017   #7
Ricky Shaw
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One. Especially if it's manual watering and a more typical high porosity mix. (ie miracle grow type potting mix, promixHP, black magic)
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Old January 7, 2017   #8
ChefBertMor
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ginger2778 View Post
My Earthboxes have a 3 gallon reservoir and 15 gallon upper potting mix chamber. Also I have 11- 7gallon pots with tall healthy (well 10 are healthy) plants in them. That one guy got too much water because of proximity to a neihhbor's sprinkler, but I moved him and we'll see if he snaps out of it!

I still would only put one plant in a 12 gallon, but it's going to be a very happy plant.
I didn't realize that EB held that much. They look smaller in photo's.Much raTHER HAve a very happy plant than a pair of squabbling siblings C="-)
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Old January 7, 2017   #9
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This size container allows you to grow the larger higher producing indeterminates, possibly untrimmed or at minimum three stems. Providing if you can find a way to keep them nourished.

I'd drill 5 inch holes on the bottom sides and fill them with promixHP and feed them a water soluble fertilizer like chemgro tomato formula or floranova. I'd do the same with at least one 15gal fabric pot, the same variety tomato, and compare.
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Old January 7, 2017   #10
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What about the additional plant(s) being a companion plant like basil?
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Old January 7, 2017   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ricky Shaw View Post
This size container allows you to grow the larger higher producing indeterminates, possibly untrimmed or at minimum three stems. Providing if you can find a way to keep them nourished.

I'd drill 5 inch holes on the bottom sides and fill them with promixHP and feed them a water soluble fertilizer like chemgro tomato formula or floranova. I'd do the same with at least one 15gal fabric pot, the same variety tomato, and compare.
This going to be a SIP container. So I will have a 4 gal reservoir underneath a 3-1-1 mix of pine bark Pro Mix HP and perlite.

I'm planning to use Texas Tomato Food for fertilizer. I don't know enough about Chemgro or Floranova or Masterblend to use them. TTF just seems a lot easier. I'm just a backyard hobbyist, I don't have the time money or space to get that sophisticated.

There are several strategies out there regarding wicking with microfiber or cotton vs baskets filled with soil less mix, holes vs no holes in the shelf, aeration holes in the sibe above the shelf, with or without overflow holes beneath the shelf! How to decide

Two summers go I did ok with, don't laugh, gallon milk jugs as a reservoir and just packed in the mix into the corners. I actually got quite a few real large Cherokee Purples and Red Zebra's. I want to ramp it up a it up this year and add a bunch of peppers'
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Old January 7, 2017   #12
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Sounds like you have an excellent plan Chef, looking forward to updates. The Florida people are having a terrific year, there will be tons of good info ahead as they reflect on the things that worked best. Good luck.
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Old January 7, 2017   #13
ginger2778
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChefBertMor View Post
This going to be a SIP container. So I will have a 4 gal reservoir underneath a 3-1-1 mix of pine bark Pro Mix HP and perlite.

I'm planning to use Texas Tomato Food for fertilizer. I don't know enough about Chemgro or Floranova or Masterblend to use them. TTF just seems a lot easier. I'm just a backyard hobbyist, I don't have the time money or space to get that sophisticated.

There are several strategies out there regarding wicking with microfiber or cotton vs baskets filled with soil less mix, holes vs no holes in the shelf, aeration holes in the sibe above the shelf, with or without overflow holes beneath the shelf! How to decide

Two summers go I did ok with, don't laugh, gallon milk jugs as a reservoir and just packed in the mix into the corners. I actually got quite a few real large Cherokee Purples and Red Zebra's. I want to ramp it up a it up this year and add a bunch of peppers'
Please,why a 4 gallon reservoir? That is more than EB uses for 2 plants. I think the extra gallon should be put to use with potting mix and nutrients. With a 3 gallon and 2 plants, I only need to add water every 3 days.
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Old January 7, 2017   #14
ChefBertMor
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ginger2778 View Post
Please,why a 4 gallon reservoir? That is more than EB uses for 2 plants. I think the extra gallon should be put to use with potting mix and nutrients. With a 3 gallon and 2 plants, I only need to add water every 3 days.
When I looked at the container, "I said Self, 4 inches deep looks about right." And thats why. The calculations came up with 4 gal. Luckily, nothing is finallized and I can reduce the reservoir down to 3 gal.

Do you really think this as a critical parameter

PS Im looking forward to your seed offering, there a few that you poated about in your photo thread that have me interested.
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Old January 8, 2017   #15
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Hi Chef B. Nice for us northerners to see some green.

Its true tomatoes are solitary creatures. When I can't separate two seedlings I plant them in the same hole. I get lulled into the twice as much dream. Never happens. Same water same fertilizer. The two plants always under produce compared to a properly spaced plant. Peppers are the opposite. They do great paired up. The companion basil is a good idea. Chop them down frequently.

Good luck with your new container venture. Report back on you sip's..

- Lisa
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