Tomatoes & Hot Weather Growing Zones
Several growing zones may enjoy tomatoes throughout summer, but the high summer temperatures in zones 8b, 9 and 10 are frequently too much.
Thankfully, the end of summer and beginning of autumn present these higher temperature growth zones with opportunities.
Zone 8b can enjoy fall tomatoes by planting transplants in late August/early September. Fall tomatoes may be grown in Zones 9 and 10 by sowing seeds or transplants throughout September.
If you’re not sure what growth zone you’re in, you can find out here.
What are Indeterminate Tomatoes?
Indeterminate tomato plants are bigger, produce more, and offer more diversity than determinate tomatoes, although they often need more attention (see pruning below). If you check on the back of your seed package or transplants, it will typically inform you.
You don’t have to, but pruning is generally recommended, especially in a raised garden/square foot garden for indeterminate tomatoes. It keeps them from taking over, improves ventilation for the plants, and directs more of the plant’s energy into fruit production rather than superfluous branches.
Can you start tomatoes in September?
Theoretically, yes, but for a far better outcome, wait until late October/early November. Use the time in September to prepare your soil and get your irrigation systems in order, so that when your Tomato seedlings go in they will have a great start.
Can you grow tomatoes year round in Zone 10?
Tomatoes thrive in warm weather, so grow them in late spring and early summer unless you live in zone 10, when they are an autumn and winter crop. For a head start on growing, plant starter plants instead of seeds.
How late is too late to start tomatoes?
Is it too late to start planting tomatoes? Certainly not. Tomato seeds may be planted at any time throughout the spring.
How late can you start tomato plants?
This is determined by your first frost date and the number of days to maturity for the variety of tomato. You may plant as long as the days to maturity are fewer than the number of days before your first frost date. Most locations should be able to plant late from late June to late August without issue.