Outdoor Girl is ideal for growing outdoors in the UK climate and produces reliable crops of classic, medium-sized tomatoes with a superb traditional flavour. Recommended for growing outdoors, but will grow under glass.
|When to sow
|Sow indoors February to April, delay sowing for outdoor crops until late March /April.
|Where to sow
|Tomatoes prefer fertile well drained soil. Can be grown either in a greenhouse or outside, in a sunny sheltered position e.g. up against a wall or garage, either in a bed, large pot/container or in grow bags.
|Sow seeds 0.5cm (1/4in) deep, in modules or trays filled with moist compost and place in a warm light position such as a south facing windowsill or where temperature is 18–21°C (65 to 70°F).
|What to do Next
When the seedlings are about 15cm (6in) high, transplant to their final growing positions, planting 40cm (16in) apart if in a bed or 2 to 3 plants per grow bag/container.
If the plants are to be grown outdoors they should be hardened of for 7 to 10 days, after the date of the last frost, prior to transplanting.
|Erect support as soon as possible, either with canes or metal spiral supports at least 2m (6.5ft) tall. Tie in the main stem to the support as it grows.
|Water well to keep the compost evenly and consistently moist and keep weed free.
|Remove, 'pinch out', side shoots which appear between the leaf and main stem and once 5 to 6 trusses have set remove the growing tip to ensure the plant focuses its energy on ensuring the remaining fruits mature and ripen.
|When the first fruits start to form, feed with a liquid fertiliser (high in potash) and every 2 to 3 weeks up until the end of August.
|July to October.
|Try potting up side shoots as soon as they are removed, they should develop roots easily and will give you some additional plants.
|Pick fruits before first frosts. If tomatoes are still green, pick and leave on a warm windowsill for them to ripen.
|Good companions: Basil, chives, garlic, marigolds, nasturtium, parsley.
|Bad Companions: Brassicas, sweetcorn, potato and fennel.
|Tomatoes are packed with antioxidants and are rich in Vitamins A and C and lycopene, all helping to stimulate your body’s immune system.
|Tomatoes are extremely versatile, eaten both cooked and raw. They can be sliced in a sandwich, eaten whole in a salad, chopped and cooked in various sauces or if a bigger variety, they can be stuffed and baked. The unripened green fruits can also be used in a tomato chutney.
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