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When to Plant Tomatoes In Pennsylvania (PA) – The Best Answer

Tomato plants require much attention and optimum conditions like temperature, pH, humidity, etc. Depending on where you live you might have to plant tomatoes at a different time for optimal results.

In this article, I will answer the question when to Plant Tomatoes In Pennsylvania?

 

When to Plant Tomatoes In Pennsylvania (PA)?

The perfect time to plant tomatoes in Pennsylvania is during the end of April and May. In order to get the best yield of tomato plants, you need to plant them at the right time. You need to give the plant adequate sunlight and air circulation for sound production. Tomato plants require moist and well-drained soil and make sure not to plant tomatoes in the exact location for three consecutive years. You can plant them in the garden and in pots as well. But if you want to increase their productivity, provide them ample space to grow.

When to Plant Tomatoes In Pennsylvania (PA)
When to Plant Tomatoes In Pennsylvania (PA)

 

Factors Affecting the Yield of Tomatoes

 

Climate

Tomatoes require a warm climate to grow well. They are sensitive to frost.

The optimum range of temperature for their growth is 69–75 degrees Fahrenheit (21-24 degrees Celsius).

Temperature plays an essential role in yield quality and productivity.

 

Fertilizers

Fertilizers with an adequate quantity of nitrogen should be used. They will help enhance the growth, size, productivity, and color of the tomatoes.

During the seeding and germination stage, provide the plant with Mono Ammonium Phosphate (MAP), which is a source of phosphorous for the plant.

 

Soil

Tomato plants require a well-drained soil that is organically rich in minerals.

Provide them with deep, loamy, and sandy soil. Tomatoes are resistant to a wide range of pH; however, the preferred pH range for their growth is 5.5-6.8.

 

Proper Irrigation

During their growth period, tomato plants require adequate moisture to grow well.

In summer, you need to water them after every 3-4 days. However, you can water them in winter after 10-15 days to keep the soil moist.

 

How to Make The Tomato Plants Grow Well

It is essential to follow these tips in order to make tomato plants grow well.

  • When planting the tomatoes, you need to provide them with enough space underground so the roots can grow and spread easily.
  • Put the seeds in the soil, spread them evenly, and then cover them with soil.
  • Place the plant in full or partial sunlight to get an adequate yield. The plant requires 6-8 hours of sunlight daily.
  • Water the plants regularly and make sure that the soil does not dry out.
Planting the tomatoes, you need to provide them with enough space underground
Planting the tomatoes, you need to provide them with enough space underground

 

Common Problems with Tomato Plants

 

Phytophthora Root Rot

It is a fungal disease in which the plant turns brown in color and eventually dies.

Phytophthora Root Rot is a fungal disease in which the plant turns brown in color and eventually dies
Phytophthora Root Rot is a fungal disease in which the plant turns brown in color and eventually dies

 

Verticillium Wilt

It is also a fungal disease. The leaves of infected tomato plants turn yellow. They turn from yellow to brown and eventually die.

Verticillium Wilt is also a fungal disease, the leaves of infected tomato plants turn yellow to brown and eventually die
Verticillium Wilt is also a fungal disease, the leaves of infected tomato plants turn yellow to brown and eventually die

 

Blight

A typical fungal disease called tomato blight causes the plant to become yellow and die. A fungicide can be used to restrict this problem.

Tomato blight is a common fungal disease that causes the plant to turn yellow and die
Fungal disease called tomato blight causes the plant to become yellow and die

 

Which Type of Tomatoes Are Best to Grow In Pennsylvania?

Apart from knowing when to plant tomatoes in Pennsylvania, another essential thing to know is which variety of tomatoes will grow well in this region.

The best variety of tomatoes for this region is Heirloom tomatoes, Red Slicers, and Saladette tomatoes.

Heirloom tomatoes are the traditional tomatoes of Pennsylvania. In the 19th century, the Amish introduced these tomatoes in Pennsylvania.

Red slicers and Saladette tomatoes are majorly used for making sauces, salads, and sandwiches.

Heirloom tomatoes are the traditional tomatoes of Pennsylvania
Heirloom tomatoes are the traditional tomatoes of Pennsylvania

 

Growing Zones of Pennsylvania

The areas identified by USDA for having similar hardiness levels are called growing zones. The weather and temperature of each zone are different, which is suitable for the growth of different plants.

The growing zones of Pennsylvania are 5a, 5b, 6a, 6b, 7a, and a little bit of 7b.

Tomato plants prefer to grow in USDA hardiness zones 5, 6, 7, and 8.

 

How Long Does A Tomato Plant Need to Grow?

Tomatoes take about 60-100 days to grow from seeds to mature plants. They are ready to harvest once they turn red in color. They are the most flavorful when they have completely ripened.

 

Health Benefits of Tomatoes

Tomatoes consist of 95% of water. Tomatoes are a rich source of dietary fiber. There are 1.5 grams of fiber in an average-sized tomato. Moreover, tomatoes are an abundant source of Vitamin K, Vitamin C, folate, and potassium.

Tomatoes are proven to improve and promote skin health. Foods made from tomatoes are rich in lycopene which protects the skin from sunburn.

Tomatoes fight oxidative stress and inflammation; hence they are proven to enhance heart health.

 

How To Keep Tomatoes Fresh?

One of the ways to keep ripe tomatoes fresh is to keep them at room temperature in your kitchen. Make sure that they are not exposed to direct sunlight.

You can keep your ripe tomatoes in the fridge to increase their shelf life.

If the tomatoes are still ripening, do not place them in the refrigerator as their ripening process will stop, and the tomatoes will be spoiled.

You can keep your ripe tomatoes in the fridge to increase their shelf life
You can keep your ripe tomatoes in the fridge to increase their shelf life

 

Frequently Asked Questions About When to Plant Tomatoes In Pennsylvania

 

Which type of tomatoes is the easiest to grow?

The simplest variety of tomatoes to raise is cherry tomatoes. Beginners are supposed to start with this type of tomato.

 

Does frost damage tomatoes?

Tomatoes prefer to grow in a warm environment. Therefore, frost will cause damage to the tomato plant.

 

What am I supposed to do to keep the tomatoes warm at night?

A cardboard box can help you protect the tomatoes from cold at night.

 

Which type of tomatoes is the sweetest?

Cherry tomatoes are found to be the sweetest of all tomatoes. However, the sugar content of all types of tomatoes is different depending upon individualistic preference.

Conclusion To When To Plant Tomatoes in In Pennsylvania (PA)

Tomatoes should be planted between April – May in Pennsylvania (PA).


Author Bio

Daniel Iseli

Taking care of houseplants and gardening are my greatest passions. I am transforming my apartment into an urban jungle and am growing veggies in my indoor and outdoor garden year-round.