Bush Goliath tomato plant is known for producing larger-sized tomatoes. Not only are these tomatoes large in size, but they also taste fantastic.
There is no solid reason why you shouldn’t grow these vegetables yourself at home. Keep reading this comprehensive guide and find out how to care for, grow, and harvest this vegetable.
What Is Bush Goliath Tomato?
Bush Goliath tomato plant is special variety of tomato that the plant grows to three feet. A full-grown plant is only a medium bush-sized, but the tomatoes it produces are of a pretty large size. This is one of the varieties of tomatoes that taste great as well.
Bush Goliath Tomato Care
Goliath is a type of tomato that grows well in direct sunlight for most of the day. This vegetable can grow in any soil, loamy but well-draining soil is the best. Don’t worry, we have it all covered in this guide. Keep reading to know all about it:
– Light Requirements
This plant can tolerate direct sunlight quite well. Because of its bushy nature, the heavy foliage tends to protect the fruits from sunburn. Hence, it is key to remember to plant your tomato vegetable garden in direct light for most of the day or even all day long.
This is possible if you want to grow this plant indoors in pots. Inside the house, a southern-facing window provides the most suitable sunlight. Place the pot or the container right next to this window so that it absorbs the right kind of light.
Unfortunately, windows facing other sides are not enough for this plant. The eastern, western, and northern windows do not provide enough light. In this case, you can install a few LED grow lights and have them running for about 15 hours each day.
– Water Requirements
The tomato is overall known as a water-loving vegetable. Bushy varieties such as goliath are especially more thirsty than others. Improperly watered goliath plants will produce very small tomatoes of poor quality.
How often you need to water this plant depends on your garden’s weather conditions. Usually, in the summers, when this plant is growing, watering twice a week is the average. You might have to water even more if you live in a particularly dry or hot area.
That is why we must emphasize always checking the topsoil before watering. To prevent overwatering, let the topsoil dry before the next watering. You can use either your own finger or a pencil for this checking.
Tomato vegetables placed in a garden are more prone to underwatering. Its soil needs to be moist consistently all the time except the topsoil, ofcourse. To keep the soil moist, watering all the time consistently is not the option. Use mulch to cover the soil. This will slow evaporation, and the soil will dry slowly.
– Soil Requirements
Technically, these tomatoes will grow in all kinds of soil. However, if you want the best yield, go for a loamy and well-draining soil mixture. Tomatoes like their soil to be moistened. Proper drainage prevents such soil from becoming runny with extra water.
In the garden, overwatering is usually not a big concern. The extra water will just be absorbed into the ground. That doesn’t give you a free pass to water as much as you like. The soil needs to be slightly acidic, around 5.8 to 6.0. If the soil begins to get alkaline than this, add a bit of sulfur to bring the pH down. If it becomes acidic, add some lime to increase the pH.
For lack of space, you can also grow this vegetable in pots. The drainage of the soil is more important in the pot. You should create your own soil mixture for a pot. Take one-quarter of ordinary potting soil and add a similar quantity of perlite, moss, and compost. Mix it all up thoroughly and evenly. Cover the topsoil with a thin and slender layer of mulch to keep the soil moist for longer.
– Temperature Requirements
This tomato plant, whether goliath or goliath hybrid tomato, is a warm growing plant. For seed germination, temperatures around 70 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit are needed. As for the adult plant, it needs 60 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit to live and grow.
It is best to germinate the seeds indoors. You can maintain the very high temperatures using a seedling heat mat or a radiator. When the outside temperatures get warmer around spring, transplant goliath plantlets outdoors.
After the appearance of the fruit, it takes about 20 days for the tomatoes to mature. They need consistently high temperatures during this time. Growing bush goliath tomato in containers or pots is convenient in this sense.
You can easily move it indoors when winter comes. Ground-grown tomato plants should just be discarded at the end of the season. At the beginning of wintertime, uproot this plant and use it for mulch or compost.
– Humidity Requirements
Tomato is a vegetable with high humidity needs. It needs 80 to 90 percent humidity levels during the daytime on average. Night time humidity needs are slightly lower, around 65 to 75 percent.
Such high levels of humidity are not going to be present anywhere naturally. You will have to either mist the plant or use a humidifier to keep this up.
Misting is best done using filtered or rainwater in a spray bottle with a small nozzle. Try to spray from a distance of a few inches. At the end of misting, your plant should only be glistening and not completely wet. The best time to mist a plant is from early morning to mid-noon. Misting late in the evening has been known to cause rot and fungal mildew infections on the plant.
Additionally, investing in a humidifier will be worth your tomato vegetables. You can sleep peacefully knowing that the exact humidity needs of these plants are being met.
– Fertilizing Requirements
Fertilizing makes this vegetable germinate, grow and produce ripe, plump tomatoes. It doesn’t matter if you composed your soil with lots of organic matter. While growing, this vegetable will eat all those nutrients and need more.
Fertilizing seeds is the best to start fertilizing goliath as early as seed germination. We prefer a compost-based growth media to sow the seeds in. If using a moss-based medium, add a bit of compost or worm castings. Four weeks after the seeds germinate, you can give it diluted compost or worm casting tea.
When transplanting the germinated seedlings into mature soil, fertilize the soil. Dig holes to put individual plants in. After placing the plant, fill each hole with a cup of natural homemade compost. You can also use a one-quarter cup of worm castings to the hole instead. Alternatively, you can buy powdered slow-release chemical fertilizer and put it in the soil.
After transplanting, give the plant some rest for about three to four weeks. After this time, you can restart fertilizing when the plant has established its roots and stabilized itself. The best feeding regimen is to give the plant a liquid fertilizer every two weeks.
Do remember to dilute this fertilizer first to half of its original strength. You can substitute chemical fertilizer with worm casting as well. Another alternative is the simple good old compost tea every 14 days.
There is only one proper way to harvest this vegetable in your garden. That method is seed harvesting. The right time to carry out this endeavor is during early springtime. However, this is not as simple as just sprinkling seeds in your kitchen garden soil.
– How To Harvest
Before harvesting bush goliath tomato seeds, you must collect a handful of the healthiest seeds you can find. You can collect them from your own tomatoes from the last batch or buy them separately. The better the seed quality, the better your tomato yield will be.
Proceed by taking a seedling tray and filling it with composted soil in even layers. Please note that you will have to keep the seedling tray indoors for the entirety of the germination period.
Push the seeds only about one-quarter of an inch into the soil. Sprinkle some water over the soil to keep it mildly moist. Your seeds need high temperatures and humidity to germinate. Take this tomato seedling tray to an indirectly lit bright place in your house.
To bump up humidity levels, you can use a humidifier in the room. Without a humidifier, you can wrap the tray with a transparent plastic sheet for a DIY greenhouse effect.
You can use a seedling heat pad to provide high temperatures (between 70 to 85 degrees Fahrenheit). Many of these seeds will germinate and sprout shoots in one to two months.
When these shoots become one to two inches long, it’s time to transplant them outside in the garden. Lastly, plant the baby tomatoes at a respectable distance from each other. Along with the roots, plant a small portion of the stem under the soil.
– How To Store
So you want to store your tomatoes, so they last till wintertime. There are many different ways you can go about this. Allow your tomatoes to be ripe first because many of these methods will stop the ripening process.
If you have even a little bit of space left in your refrigerator, then freezing these tomatoes is your best bet. Wash them first and then let them dry. Remove the stem from each tomato before placing them in a zip lock bag. Freeze all your tomatoes for as long as you want to.
Put your tomatoes in a blender and have them turn into puree. This puree can then be refrigerated and used as per needed. Additionally, canning tomato is a time-tested method of storing tomatoes. You may store them in cans, both chopped tomatoes or whole peeled potatoes.
All Tomatoes species can be a bit tricky to figure out. Goliath is no exception to this. Discover some of the most common problems you might face while growing a tomato harvest. Educate yourself regarding the best solutions as well.
– Blossom End Rot
Blossom end rot is the bane of all tomato farmers’ existence. The blossom ends at the bottom of your tomatoes and develops discolored leathery patches.
Over time this usually brown discoloration grows in size and turns black. The top of the plant looks healthy, but the bottom is badly rotten.
Surprisingly, this is not a bacterial or fungal disease. This condition occurs due to a lack of calcium in the soil. Calcium is absorbed into the plant along with water. So underwatering might also be the cause behind this rot.
Sadly, once your tomato yield has developed rot spots at its blossom ends, there is nothing much you can do. That is why knowing how to prevent this from happening beforehand is important.
Take help from a two to three inches deep layer of mulch to keep the soil moist. Mulch also Decreases competition from weed. Cardboard, grass clippings, straw, and leaves can work as mulch. Maintaining the right pH of around 6.0 is very important. This is the optimal pH for calcium uptake from the roots. Always perform a soil litmus test when planting new tomatoes.
Lastly, it is key to remember that fertilization is important, but overfertilization impairs calcium absorption into the plant. This especially happens with chemical types of fertilizers. That is why you need to follow the proper guidelines for fertilization.
Slugs, snails, and caterpillars are the most common pests found among tomato goliath plants. They chew on the leaves and destroy them. They take food away from the poor plant itself.
A malnourished plant naturally will have stunted growth, fewer leaves, and a poor yield of tomatoes. You will fail to get the characteristic giant-sized fruits for which this plant is famous.
Luckily, both these pests are easy to spot and identify. Snails and slugs are also known for leaving slime trails behind them.
Luckily, pests are quite easy to get rid of. The key is that you stay consistent and do not expect instant results. Use biological controls to get rid of these bugs. Such as introducing wasps to get rid of caterpillars and ladybugs for snails.
Set a DIY trap to catch these flies and pests in. take a mug, fill it halfway with beer, and cover it with a plastic sheet. Make a hole in the center of the sheet. The bugs will go in through these holes and will not be able to come out. Flies laying insects and caterpillars on the plant can also be trapped using yellow sticky paper.
Cover the soil with eggshells after crushing them. These crushed eggshells are a big nuisance to slugs and snails. They will automatically stay away from your tomato vegetables.
A brief recapitulation on goliath-sized tomatoes before we sign off. Here are the key points that we covered in this article:
- Plant this vegetable in a well-draining and loamy soil in a garden or a pot.
- Keep its soil moist as much as you can without overwatering.
- At the start of spring, harvest new tomatoes from seeds. Do this inside the house in a seedling tray.
- After the fruiting period is over, uproot the plant and discard it.
Bush goliath is a tomato variety that produces the plumpest and juiciest fruit. Using this guide, you can successfully grow this vegetable at home.
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