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Pot Size Conversion

Today was one of those days I wish there was something “standardized” about pot sizes. One catalog uses one set of measurements, another catalog uses something else. Stores use inches, nurseries use gallons. Ahhhh.

Trying to figure out pot sizes is often quite a headache. You’ve got some in inches, some in gallons, and yes, even some in fluid ounces; the later we’re still trying to figure out. They do make this confusing, don’t they? There’s a theory going around that this purposely confusing system is a way for the mass market industry to charge more for plants, by container size, not necessarily Plant Size!

So let’s try and break down these various sizes and measurements and set some general “accepted standards” for pot sizes. Please remember these are rough estimates and not a science. Some of the larger sizes especially are prone to variances in height, width, and depth of the pot. We’ve also attached a photograph that we hope will help allow you to visualize the differences.

Today was one of those days I wish there was something ‘standardized’ about pot sizes. One catalog uses one set of measurements, another catalog uses something else. Stores use inches,…

Will Tomatoes Plants Flourish in a Three-Gallon Pot?

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Grow juicy, red tomatoes (Solanum lycopersicum) in a small space by planting them in containers. You don’t need large pots to enjoy an abundant crop of summer tomatoes. Many varieties can grow well in smaller 3-gallon pots with proper selection and care. Plant tomatoes in outdoor containers in early summer. They will produce from midsummer through fall.

Know the Tomato Types

The type of tomato plant determines the best size of pot. Indeterminate varieties, which can grow 6 feet or taller, don’t perform well as container plants. The shorter, bushier determinate types grow best in 4- to 5-gallon pots, but they can produce adequately in a 3-gallon pot. The dwarf varieties, sometimes labeled as patio tomatoes, flourish in a 3-gallon pot and can survive in pots as small as 1 or 2 gallons.

Select the Right Pot

Select 3-gallon pots that are at least 10 inches deep with a diameter between 16 and 22 inches, while avoiding wider, shallower pots. The pot must provide bottom drainage holes so the soil doesn’t become soggy, which causes root rot and can kill your tomato plants. You can fill the pot with any well-drained potting soil, although soilless mixes work best. Mixing 1 1/2 tablespoons of a balanced, slow-release fertilizer, such as a 10-10-10 blend, into every 3 gallons of soil provides the initial nutrients for healthy tomato growth.

Provide Ongoing Care

Container-grown tomatoes require six hours or more of direct daily sun to thrive. Regular watering also increases plant health and production. Containers can dry quickly, so check the soil daily and water when the top 1 inch of soil begins to dry. Begin soluble fertilizer applications when the potted tomatoes begin fruiting. Mix 1 tablespoon of a 24-8-16 or similar blend with 1 gallon of water and water the tomatoes with the solution every one or two weeks.

Keep Plants Healthy

Frequent harvesting of the tomatoes as they ripen keeps the plant productive and prevents it from becoming too heavy for the smaller 3-gallon container. Dwarf and determinate plants don’t require staking or pruning, although you can trim out broken or damaged branches. Disinfect shears and garden tools in a solution containing 1 part bleach and 9 parts water to prevent the spread of disease. Avoid overhead watering, which can lead to fungal diseases, and monitor the plants for aphids and hornworms. Remove larger pests, like hornworms, by hand. Rinse small pests, like aphids and mites, off the tomato plants with a sharp spray of water early in the day, which gives the leaves time to dry quickly under the warm sun.

Will Tomatoes Plants Flourish in a Three-Gallon Pot?. Grow juicy, red tomatoes (Solanum lycopersicum) in a small space by planting them in containers. You don’t need large pots to enjoy an abundant crop of summer tomatoes. Many varieties can grow well in smaller 3-gallon pots with proper selection and care. Plant …