If you want to grow tomatoes in your home garden—the easy and fruitful way—you’ve come to the right place!
Food Gardening Network’s purpose is to help home gardeners like you with clear and concise advice about how to grow, harvest, cook, and enjoy the fruits of your labor in your home garden. Growing tomatoes is one of the most rewarding aspects of home food gardening. Tomatoes are quite easy to grow and manage, your harvest will be bountiful and regular throughout the season, and you’ll have lots of ways to enjoy your tomatoes after you’ve picked them!
Botanically speaking, tomatoes (Solanum lycopersicum) are fruits—from the berry family. But for cooking purposes, tomatoes are usually treated as vegetables. Tomatoes have much less sugar than typical fruits, which is another reason why some people simply view them as vegetables.
Did you know that the tomato species started in Central and western South America? The Aztec word tomatl is the origin of what the Spanish dubbed tomate, and what we call tomato! After conquering the Aztec Empire, Spaniards brought tomato seeds back to Spain and, beginning in the 16th century, tomato growing spread throughout Europe.
In Europe, it took a few hundred years for the tomato to take off. In the 1880s, pizza was invented in Italy and became a popular dish topped with tomatoes or tomato sauce. In the United States, the Civil War boosted the tomato’s reputation, because Union troops could efficiently be fed canned tomatoes. Consumption boomed, and production eventually rivaled potatoes as a major crop.
Today, the tomato is a revered plant in the United States. Reynoldsburg, Ohio, claims to be the birthplace of the commercial tomato and holds an annual Tomato Festival, complete with a Tomato Festival Queen.
Please use this FREEBIE The Best Way to Grow Tomatoes to get started with growing your own delicious tomatoes. Whether you’re a veteran tomato grower or a beginner, you’ll find this advice valuable for ensuring your tomato growing efforts are successful.
Senior Editor & Producer
Food Gardening Network
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