The 4 Tastiest Tomatoes to Grow this Fall
We’re pretty darn lucky to be able to grow tomatoes year-round, though some varieties are better for certain times of year. The end of the summer is the perfect opportunity to get cooler-weather varieties in the ground, and by this time of year, you’ll likely encounter far fewer pest problems. Since we’re just so awesome, we did the sleuthing for you and chose the top 4 best tomatoes to grow in Houston in fall. Pick up some of these bad boys pronto to enjoy another amazing garden harvest 2–3 months from now!
This super-sweet cherry variety boasts massive clusters of tiny fruits. You’ll be amazed by how huge the crop yield is on these vigorous growers! It’s an indeterminate variety, meaning it will produce fruit continually as it grows, instead of having a massive harvest all at once. For the best possible yield, trim off the suckers (little sprouts that pop out from the points where two stems connect).
Use stakes or a trellis to keep your Sweet Millions upright and off the ground, and to help them self-pollinate, give the trellis a little shake every once in a while. This helps to loosen up the pollen within each of the little flowers. To avoid the development of late blight or other fungal issues, use some copper-based fungicide spray and coat the leaves and stem generously according to the bottle’s instructions.
The sweet, shiny fruits of this vining variety are super crack-resistant, so you can leave them on the vine for quite some time without worry. Transplants take 60–70 days to mature and will spread about 22 inches across. Give them two feet of space between each other if you’re planning on planting several. If you’re unsure of when to harvest them, you can either wait until the fruits have taken on a light green, almost yellow shade. They can ripen indoors in a cool, dry spot, or you can just keep them on the vine until they turn red.
Since Juliets grow on a vine, you’ll need some sort of trellis or structure for them to climb up. Alternatively, if you want to avoid hungry rabbits gobbling up your harvest, you can grow this variety in a hanging basket! When the fruits begin to ripen and transition from green, to yellow, to red, they’ll look like strings of colorful patio lights spilling downward. Who says edible plants can’t be decorative too?
If you want a determinate variety that doesn’t take too long to mature, Romas are the way to go, with a maturation time of 75 days if transplanted as a seedling. They’re a plum variety, so they’re moderately sized, and have a deliciously tangy flavor that isn’t overly acidic.
Once they’re about 6 inches tall, stake them or use a cage to keep them upright. Romas can reach up to 4 feet tall at maturity, so make sure you use a large support!
Romas are considered a paste tomato, meaning they have thicker fruit flesh and fewer seeds, so they’re great for making sauces. If you like making your own homemade salsa, this plant is an absolute must-have. Speaking of which, if salsa-making is up your alley, it’s a smart idea to grow some cilantro this time of year as well!
This ultra-popular variety earned its name due to its glowing reputation for being a much easier tomato to grow than pretty much every other kind out there. It’s super disease-resistant and isn’t likely to get ravaged by pests. Plus, they bear large fruits and only need about 60–70 days to mature after transplanting! They’ll grow 3–4 feet tall at full size, and should be planted 2–3 feet apart.
While the Celebrity variety is more drought-tolerant than most, it’s still a good idea to water it regularly and consistently. Applying a generous layer of organic mulch across the soil will help retain moisture, while also preventing weeds and pests. It’s also crucial to make sure the soil is loose, so the roots can easily spread and penetrate into the ground. You can kill two birds with one stone by mixing up the soil with some compost before planting, so it’s all loosey-goosey and chock full of nutrients.
For everything you need for your fall 2020 vegetable garden, come visit Plants for All Seasons, or place an order over the phone. We’re happy to provide curbside pickup or citywide delivery in Houston if you need it. If you’re unsure of when to plant any other veggies during fall, check out our blog on fall and winter vegetable gardening for more information!