Most people equalize early girl tomato with a standard vegetable, but it offers beyond the expectation. This variety is a fast-grower and fruitful producer that can be grown everywhere with effortless maintenance.
Early girl variety represents the classic tomato, yet what is the plant famous for? Find out some detailed information about interesting facts, growing and caring for the tasty fruit in the garden. Try to cultivate this vegetable and get ready to enjoy your heavy yields.
Early Girl Tomato Facts
Early girl tomato that features a round shape with a size of the tennis ball becomes popular due to its quick growth of deeply flavored fruits. It grows well in either pots or planting areas. The plant can yield large and sweet crops in less than 50 days.
However, if you propagate by seeds, the plants will be mature 25 days longer. Thus, the ripen fruits can be harvested after 75 days.
The tomato comes with elongated and irregular vines that reach 244 centimeters long in late summer. This variety is suitable for dry land gardening that uses a small amount of water, yet it creates a high quality of flavor component and produces more fruits.
Furthermore, different varieties give the same number of crops. The vining and bush tomatoes will produce fruit about 170 to 227 grams, although they have distinct growth rates.
For the quality, it depends on how you care for them. This fruit can grow into a slicer tomato. Therefore, the variety will be perfect for salads and raw snacks.
Additionally, the indeterminate variety of early girl tomato always produces the fruits all the season because it is a prolific plant. You will get many crops in each harvesting time.
Unfortunately, you cannot save the seeds to be planted in the next year since this hybrid variety will not grow similarly to its type. The early girl tomato seeds can be sterile or have a poor quality of fruit.
Growing Early Girl Tomato
You have to prepare the best soil that is well cultivated and nutritious. Keep a pH of 6.5 to 7.5, although acidic land is acceptable. Early girl tomato requires a high level of nutritional use since it has fast growth.
Its speed usually shows that the application of fertilizer cannot occur during production.
Then, it is better to cultivate tomato plants in the ground. They also thrive well in large planters. Meanwhile, creating raised beds will be more effective.
To grow tomato plants in the early season, start seedlings for two months indoors. After the seeds germinate in the third week, potting them to large containers. Big planters help the root to develop before transplanting outdoors.
Locate the seedlings for 18 hours every day. If necessary, install fluorescent lamps for young plants to make them grow sturdy. It is also essential to brush the tips to establish strong stems.
Importantly, prepare to preheat the soil before replanting the early girl tomato in the garden. Cover the raised beds with black plastic sheets for a week. Make some holes for growing the plants.
While transplanting, set the right depth so that the leafy tops place above the soil surface. The last step is adding compost, manure, or organic fertilizer into each planting hole. Remember to give enough water to keep the ground moist.
Essential Factors to Care for Early Girl Tomato
This tomato variety can grow at a low temperature of 4 degrees Celsius, so if you start cultivating in early fall or late spring frost, the plant might die. Some ways for protection are using row covers and layering the soil surface with mulch or compost.
Another factor is watering the plants. The tomato that has insufficient water will be prone to blossom end rot. On the other hand, getting over liquid might cause deteriorated roots. Therefore, make sure that the soil is not too dry or wet.
Likewise, composting becomes a proper method to supply nutrients to the soil. Do not forget to add some organic matters to the planting area. The best materials come from your kitchen waste, so create them by yourself. If necessary, use fertilizer for extra nutrition.
Additionally, proper pruning is choosing to cut the lower stems and side shoots of your tomato. This way will encourage the plant to produce more fruit. Prune the vining plant carefully to avoid breakage since some branches might be overloaded.
Early Girl Tomato Care Guide
Improve the care quality to increase the number of fruits that you harvest each year. Keep proper maintenance for the most prominent factors that include watering, temperature, fertilization, and pruning.
Caring for Vining and Bush Tomato
Since early girl tomato is both determinate and indeterminate, you can choose two options to care for the plant. The choices can be either vining or bush.
A vining variety can reach 1.8 to 2.4 meters tall. If you prefer this type, supporting the plant with cages or stakes is necessary. On the other hand, a bush early girl tomato only grows about 0.9 meters tall and wide. This determinate type is suitable to cultivate in pots.
Therefore, to determine early girl tomato varieties is depending on the location and the growing method. A vining plant is not suitable for indoors since its height will grow too tall, whereas the bush variant can thrive inside the house with proper pruning.
Common Pests and Diseases
Early girl tomato is not hard to cultivate since it has been bred to resist any diseases. This plant prefers full sun areas, so a shaded place will not be acceptable.
A common illness like blight might infect the tomato, but it rarely happens to this variety. A quick growth to maturity will prevent the plant from this disease.
Tomato will be mature in less than two months, and they become a vibrant red. You can harvest them before all fruits ripen. Do not miss its prime time to pick the crops. Since it is a fast-grower, the green raw can ripe quickly.
How to Prune Early Girl Tomato
To produce more fruits, the easy-to-grow plant requires regular pruning. Besides, this method will make it healthier. Therefore, do not neglect to trim the branches, or the tasty tomato will suffer from diseases and set less fruit.
If there are some side branches under the first flowers, you need to eliminate them. They might deflect energy from the base stem and the growing fruit. Clip off with sharp shears or squeeze between the finger and thumb instead of ripping the plant.
Slitting will create a wound and cause diseases.
Early girl tomato features many branches on the right and left part, so reduce the number to keep the plant healthy. You can let some side stems develop over the first flowers.
Then, pinch off lower shoots and leaves between the base and side branches. Do it in the morning since the plants are still resilient and brittle. If they are larger, shave with a razor blade to remove the tips.
After that, use sharp shears to cut the upper leaves. Prune them one month before fall temperatures come. Thus, the early girl tomato will transfer all energy to ripening the existing fruits instead of developing the new ones.
Choose a location that gets full sun exposure and keep a temperature of 18 to 24 degrees Celsius. Avoid a sudden drop below that level because the fruits will ripe slowly and discontinue the growth.
If you grow early girl tomato in a hot and dry garden, do not cut the leaves that shelter the ripen fruits from the sun to avoid sunburning and creating a deprived area.
Support early girl tomato with stakes or cages when the first blooming flowers appear. They help the faster ripen fruits to develop healthily. The caged plants will need low maintenance and less pruning, while the fastened sticks provide more free-spacing areas in the garden.
Use a 2-meter-long and 3-cm-wide fencing wood to stake the tomatoes in the soil. Fasten it to the stem with ropes or cloth strips. Meanwhile, if you prefer using cages, opt for galvanized wires to support the plants. The minimum height should be 1.5 meters.
Tasty Recipes with Early Girl Tomato
There will be many tomato crops during the harvesting time, so it is better to cook some delicious foods. This fruit is meaty and sweet. You can make a tasty soup and sauce instead of eating raw.
To make tomato sauce, use the whole fruit without peeling off the skin. Add some additional ingredients that include garlic, bay leaves, basil, thyme, and olive oil. Use salt and black pepper for seasoning.
Put all ingredients into a large pot and cook for two hours. Then, make tomato puree by processing the mixture in a blender. After that, add the seasonings. You can serve the sauce with your favorite pasta. Besides, it can be stored in the freezer for later use.
Finally, we expect that the information above will be helpful. You might have known more about how to care for early girl tomato since this plant offer low-maintenance benefit. An abundance of healthy crops will be produced in your garden, hopefully.