it all started sometime last summer, when matt and i found ourselves in a tangled mess of tomato plants in our garden, desperately trying to prop them up and keep them secured inside their cages. it seems that no matter what, tomato plants love to just go crazy, and by the time the plant is full-on producing fruit, you're battling it's size and the weight of all the tomatoes, and you're risking damaging the plant when you're really just trying to prop the sucker up and keep it from breaking.
so check it out: we are growing our tomatoes upside down this year.
a quick trip to lowes for some supplies:
and the rest is pretty simple. you just need some large buckets, and a spot in your yard that gets a nice, full day's worth of sunshine. of course you'll have to figure out how you're going to hang them... i've seen people use a laundry line pole, or even just hang them from a hook on the deck. matt pulled out all the stops and built an official upside-down-tomato-grower's-structure of sorts... but really, you can keep it simple if you're limited on space or tools or whathaveyou. anyhow, you just want to cut some holes in the bottom of the buckets to plant the tomatoes:
and hang them in your sunny spot! the rain will water the tomatoes from the top of the bucket, and you can easily water them yourself if the weather is not cooperating.
so not only do you save on the cost of tomato cages/stakes and the time spent tying + propping up the plant, you're practically eliminating the issue of ants + slugs coming along and snacking on your plants. from all the pictures i've seen online, the plants seem to love it. the plant produces a TON of tomatoes and they ripen so nicely. i don't know about you, but in my world, there's nothing better tasting than a home grown tomato. i'm just thinking of all the fresh salsa i'm going to make, all the yummy slices sprinkled with salt that i'll be snacking on, all the mozzarella, basil, tomato salads i'm going to eat. YUM. hello summer!