Brandywine tomato is the oldest kind of tomato found in America. It is extremely popular, yet many people prefer to buy it from a farmer’s market. They do not grow Brandywine tomatoes at home because the crop always fails.
You can find Brandywine tomatoes in many different colors. This includes red, pink, orange, yellow, and black. Brandywine tomatoes have gained popularity due to their enormous size. They also have impeccable taste and look like pumpkins. They taste sweet, fresh, juicy, and meaty- ideal for a salad or sandwich.
Since Brandywine tomatoes are not readily available in supermarkets, they are hard to find. The best way to consume them is to grow them. However, growing Brandywine tomatoes can be overwhelming. A heavy production often fails.
Many people complain about not being able to grow these crops at home. However, we have put together the ultimate fool-proof guide for you. This guide will go over each step in detail so that growing Brandywine tomatoes becomes easier than ever.
Steps To Grow Brandywine Tomatoes That Will Ensure A Successful Harvest:
1. Should You Go for Seeding or Seedling?
When you’re looking to grow Brandywine tomatoes, you will find that seeding is always preferred over a seedling. We recommend that if you use seeds, you should grow Brandywine tomato indoors. You should sow the seeds about ¼ inches deep. Make sure to plant them six weeks before the transplanting period. This usually takes place after spring.
To help seeds germinate rapidly, use warm soil. The soil should be above 65 F. Moreover, you should ensure that the sand is moist pre-germination. However, do not make it soggy. Once the seeds start to grow, lower down watering.
If you decide to use a seedling, try to find ones with clean leaves. The leaves should not have any spots or blemishes. After the final frost, the seeds should be planted outdoors. The temperature should be 65 F or more. Plant the seedlings in a spot that receives sunlight. Brandywine tomato requires 12 hours of uninterrupted sunlight.
When planting a seedling, you have to dig a hole. The hole needs to be two-thirds as deep as the plant’s height. It must also be twice as wide as the ball found at the roots of the plant. You can add compost to a depth of 12 inches. Use a rake to smoothen the soil.
Once done, the seedling roots should be spread outwards and placed into the hole. Throw in more water and soil into the hole.
Decide where you would like to grow Brandywine tomato. Before tilling the soil, make sure it is free of debris and weeds. In the soil, add peat moss, vermiculite, and compost. Use water generously.
The best way to grow these tomatoes is in fertile soil, which is well-drained. If you are looking for high production, make use of loams and fertile clays.
In case you want to harvest Brandywine tomato early, a light soil that drains and warms easily will be helpful. Moreover, the soil should have a pH of 6.5. If the soil is overly acidic, it will harm the crop.
3. Water Your Plants Regularly (But Don’t Overwater)
When you start to grow Brandywine tomatoes, make sure to water them sufficiently. This can be done daily in a moderate amount or sufficiently once a week. By watering this crop efficiently, not only do you ensure its wellbeing, but you also wash away any parasites. Keep in mind that Brandywine tomato is a delicate plant.
However, do not overwater the plant. If the soil becomes soggy, it will destroy the crop. Poke the top 2 inches of the soil to check if it needs water. If it is dry, water the plant. Make sure to water the soil from the base instead of the top of the plant.
4. Use the Right Fertilizer
We all know that Brandywine tomatoes have a big feed. Fertilizer is a must when growing this plant. We would recommend a fertilizer of 18-18-21 ratio. This includes nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium. This helps create a water-soluble fertilizer. The fertilizer should be mixed with one gallon of water.
Take one cup of fertilizer mixture and use it around the crop. This fertilizer should be used once a fortnight.
Once the process of flowering begins, all you need is nitrogen fertilizer. A slow-release fertilizer is recommended. Use one tablespoon per plant. Pour water around the soil to activate it. You can use fertilizer on the Brandywine tomato every four to six weeks.
5. Transplanting (For Seeding Process)
Once the last frost has ended and the temperature at night is 50 F, it is time for transplanting. However, we recommend waiting two weeks after the last frost. Cold soil and air temperature do not allow the crop to grow properly. Once the plant has flowered, do not continue the process of transplanting. Keep an eye out for dark green plants.
Grow Brandywine tomatoes deep. Keep a space of 20 inches between each plant. Planting on soils that have lately grown tomatoes, peppers, or eggplants will cause root disease risk.
However, you can grow these tomatoes next to carrots, onions, chives, roses, and nettle. Do not worry about parasites – Brandywine tomatoes will discourage their growth.
Do not cultivate corn, potatoes, and fennel herb close to Brandywine tomatoes.
To maintain soil moisture and avoid weeds, mulching is a significant process. Mulching should begin once the soil has been warmed. In case there is not enough sunlight, you can incorporate red plastic in the crop.
Moreover, to grow Brandywine tomatoes, you must water them sufficiently. This is especially true if there is no rainfall where you live. To grow, these tomatoes require a steady supply of water.
7. Ensure That Your Plants Have the Necessary Support
Support ensures optimum fruit quality, ensuring that it is kept clean. With the right support, harvest is also made easier. Support can be given in lots of ways.
Tomato cages and wooden tomato stakes are easily available in the market. However, when you grow Brandywine tomato, do not use long stakes. These can destroy the roots of the tomatoes.
Pruning is important to allow the smooth growth of shoots. All you have to do is tie the stems using a soft string or cloth piece. Create a figure-8 so that the stem is in one circle and a stake in another. This allows the crop to grow without feeling constricted.
When using fertilizer, get rid of any close by weeds. This also applies when you water the plant. As they grow, adjust the stems in the cage. Get rid of bent stems using the holes of the cage. This will help straighten the crop.
9. Keep Your Crops Free From Pests
There is no denying that pests can destroy crops. This is especially true for Brandywine tomatoes as they are very sensitive. Since the ripening process takes time, they are more vulnerable to pests and diseases. However, watering their roots lowers the possibility of fungal infections.
If you want to protect Brandywine tomatoes from birds, bugs, and beetles, try netting. This attracts bees and wasps that eat smaller insects.
10. The Harvest
Once you notice that the Brandywine tomatoes have become red or rosy pink, harvest them. The average time these crops take to get ready is 90 days.
When harvesting, make sure you do not cut the entire stem. Only cut the tomato.
When you start to grow Brandywine tomatoes, there may be a few mistakes that you make. To avoid this, you should follow the advice of an experienced gardener. This guide will allow you to grow these crops successfully and consume the very best quality. Good luck!