Tomato Seeds

Sow in flats or cell-packs 6 to 8 weeks prior to transplanting outdoors. Tomato seed will not germinate in cool soil. To enhance germination soak seeds for 8 hrs. starting with warm water prior to sowing. Once sown, place trays or packs on a heat mat with consistent bottom heat of 75°-85°F. Plant seeds 1/4 inch deep. When plants are about 1 1/2 inches tall with two sets of true leaves, transplant into Jiffy® Peat Pots. After threat of frost, harden off tomato plants for 7-10 days, then transplant outdoors 3 to 4 feet apart when nighttime temperatures stay above 45°F. Maturity days given are from date of outdoor transplanting. Tomatoes can be attacked by a range of diseases and insects, so monitor plants for symptoms throughout the growing season. To combat diseases, you can grow varieties bred with resistance to common disease problems. With the help of your local extension service, determine what diseases are common in your area. Look for varieties with codes indicating resistance to those diseases. The disease resistance codes appear at the beginning of each variety description. If no codes are given, as with many heirlooms, that means they don't have bred-in disease resistance. Even resistant varieties may need some preventative fungicide applications, especially in wet, humid seasons when disease pressure is highest. Common Tomato Disease Codes V = Verticillium Wilt F = Fusarium Wilt (FF = Races 1 & 2 and FFF = Races 1, 2 & 3) N = Nematodes T = Tobacco Mosaic Virus A = Alternaria Stem Canker St = Stemphylium Gray Leaf Spot LB = Late Blight