How often should you fertilize tomato plants is a question that often plagues the mind of the growers. You need to be aware that in addition to the soil and water, the best fertilizer for tomatoes in pots helps them to be healthy.

Fertilizing Tomato Plants

This article includes information on how often should you fertilize tomato plants in containers and the ground so that you can get the best harvest. Read on because we also provide some tidbits on the correct usage and ways to apply the formula to grow tomatoes, so don’t put it off too long.

How Often Should Tomato Plants Be Fertilized?

💥 Tomato plants must be fertilized every two weeks or so when grown in the ground. Tomatoes grown in containers require more frequent fertilization, typically once per week. If you’re growing tomatoes in porous grow bags, try fertilizing them more frequently than once per week.

When To Fertilize Tomatoes?

The time when you should fertilize tomatoes is at first during transplantation, one month after planting them, and after the first fruit has shown. The reason is that it will establish during these times and be prosperous in its growth. 

Tomatoes need to be fertilized specifically during two times of their growth. This is right after planting them and again right before they bear fruit. This is essential if you want to develop the best possible crop. 

– During Transplantation

When transplanting seedlings, some gardeners like to use the opportunity to apply fertilizers as another round, either incorporate it into the soil or remain at the bottom of the planting hole. Tomatoes that have been transplanted require some adjustment time in their new environments.

During Transplantation

Providing additional nutrients at this point may lessen the symptoms of transplant shock, and the plants will get off to a healthy start without being overburdened. The reason why this is important is that this fruit is still aiming to establish itself and in this case, it needs to be supported from the starting time.

– A Month After Planting

A significant time when fertilizing is to wait a month after you plant the seedlings. The reason for the latter is that the plant needs to find the living conditions and environment one that it requires, as a result, a month is a sufficient time for it. 

Start fertilizing tomatoes with the initial round to nourish the soil and get it up to par. Even while the plant will still be in its early phases of development, it will have sufficient time to acclimatize to its new environment and extra nourishment acts as a buffer from any potential shock.

– After the First Fruit

Tomatoes are heavy feeders, so you should provide the second portion of the fertilizer as soon as the plant produces its first fruit. This will give the plant the boost it needs to grow larger and higher-quality fruits before they are harvested. Suppose you want to know what to feed tomatoes when fruiting; you could choose an organic mix to boost it properly. Add nitrogen at this stage for an enhanced effect.

It is ideal to begin the second round of fertilization as soon as possible because, as previously said, fertilizing tomato plants too late in the season can result in fruit quality issues. When to stop fertilizing tomatoes is, once the plants start producing a lot of fruit.

Remember that tomatoes are heavy eaters, and for the plants to grow and develop typically, they require a lot of various nutrients, and the proper fertilizer is needed for this reason. When you neglect to fertilize your plants, you can expect a meager yield from them, especially at the stage when they have set themselves. These fruit need a wide variety of nutrients, including nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium, and everyone performs an essential role that the plants require, to show more fruit.

How to Provide Fertilizers for Tomatoes?

To provide fertilizers for tomatoes, you can start by hydrating the plant, and then fertilizing at the bottom. However, make sure that you would reduce chances of having fertilizer burn.

Provide Fertilizers for Tomatoes

You can easily provide these fertilizers for both, tomatoes and tomato seedlings.

– Hydrate the Plant

Firstly, you must make sure that the plant is adequately hydrated before beginning the process of fertilizing it once the fruits have formed, this is because the soil needs a prosperous foundation that the fertilizer will grip itself on. If the tomato plant is not sufficiently hydrated before being fertilized, you may harm it by applying an excessive amount, which would not result in a proper growth.

– Fertilize at the Bottom

Provide fertilizers by mixing it into the soil at the bottom of the planting hole. After doing so, add some soil that has not been fertilized on top of the fertilized soil, and then plant tomatoes into the planting hole. Be careful, as raw fertilizer can cause severe damage to a tomato plant if it gets into touch with the roots of the plant.

Then, you can start by applying some dry fertilizers to the soil around the plant by sprinkling them there and then working them with your hands. As motioned, you must be cautious in this step and avoid getting the application too close to the plant’s stem. 

On another note, remember that you should leave a good deal of room around the plant, but not so much that it extends beyond its roots, which would cause a citation of malfunctioning. After being stirred into the soil, remember that you must provide the plant with slow and in-depth irrigation.

– Reduce Chances of Fertilizer Burn

Be cautious and notice signs that indicate fertilizer burn. As mentioned, if the roots come into contact with the fertilizer, it could also burn them, depending on the fertilizer you use. 

To reduce the likelihood of this happening, amend the soil at the bottom of the plant with a mixture that contains organic matter like coffee grounds, compost tea, bone meal, or worm castings which will keep the plants alive until the next time you fertilize them. 

Reduce Chances of Fertilizer Burn

When the plant gets to face a fertilizer burn, it is a great deal of stress for them, because this is the time when it struggles and the excessive boost is going to result in a burn. Hence, one must be cautious and try to dilute it with different boosters as well, to calm this down, and to avoid any harshness. 

What Is the Most Effective Tomato Fertilizer?

The most effective tomato fertilizer is the using commercial fertilizer, in addition to granular, liquid, water soluble ones and homemade fertilizers. These are the best ones, because they will give a prosperous effect on the fruit that you wish to harvest.

The best and most effective fertilizer for tomatoes would be the ones that promote plant growth, flowering, fruit development, and disease resistance. If you give your tomato plant the proper care and nutrients, it will produce fruit that tastes great. To select the optimal fertilizer for your tomato plants and the environment in which they are growing, it is necessary to conduct more in-depth inquiry.

– Commercial Fertilizers

Algoplus tomato liquid fertilizer, espoma tomato plant food, neptune’s harvest tomato & veg formula fertilizer, urban farm fertilizers‘ Texas tomato food 32 ounces fertilizer, algoplus for tomato plants perfectly balanced liquid fertilizer for stronger, healthier, and tastier tometoes and Dr. Earth pump & grow are all examples of commercial formulas for tomatoes.

You will find them in granular, liquid, and water-soluble forms. The time of year, the state of the plants, the climate and other considerations all play a role in determining which formulation will most effectively meet the gardener’s requirements. Also, if you are thinking about -“Is 20-20-20 fertilizer good for tomatoes?” then know that the nitrogen component in such chemical fertilizer helps in growing healthy tomatoes, but again you must be very detailed with the quantity that you are using. 

– Granular

There are options for both organic fertilizers and inorganic fertilizers in this form. Granular fertilizer is simple to use, does not require any preparation time, and may be stored indefinitely so long as it is kept in a dry and cool environment. 

Granular Fertilizer

It is a recommended version, because some gardeners can apply it in two ways: by working it into the soil before planting or scattering it across the plant’s root zone. In general, the reason why it is loved is that this type of fertilizers can either have a quick release or a gradual release of their nutrients.

– Liquid

Fertilizer available in the liquid form typically comes in a concentrated form that needs to be diluted with water before use. It can be found in organic tomato fertilizers and inorganic form, and it can be used by plants as soon as they are grown. How much liquid fertilizer per tomato plant, then you should know that liquid fertilizer solutions are best used at half-strength or less.

You can use a wide variety of equipment that may be used to apply this, ranging from a straightforward watering can to calibrated hose-end sprayers that incorporate the fertilizer concentrate into the water stream as it is carried through. On another perspective, having frequent application of liquid fertilizer is also required because it delivers a concentrated dose of nutrients in a short amount of time. It has quite a long shelf life if it is not opened and kept in the appropriate conditions.

– Water-soluble

Water-soluble fertilizers can function more quickly than either of those other forms. The moment it is applied to plants, it is quickly made available to them. Water-soluble fertilizers can be either organic or inorganic, just like the other available fertilizers.

A micro granular or powdered kind of water-soluble fertilizer is readily available to purchase. This type of fertilizer dissolves quickly in water, and it will be ready to use. However, make sure that you do not just spread these into the soil, or else the plant may be discouraged because it needs some fertilizer, but doesn’t have the right amount at the moment, even when you have applied. 

– Homemade Fertilizer

The advantage of making your tomato fertilizer at home is that you can tailor it to meet the specific requirements of your plants by basing it on the composition of the soil. Before you plant anything, it is highly recommended that you get a soil test done to determine what nutrients the soil lacks.

Wood ash, also known as potash in other terms, is beneficial to the growth of tomatoes when used in minimal amounts. On the other hand, kelp meal is also an excellent one for promoting the development of flowers. Meal made from cottonseed is one that would slowly releases nutrients into the soil and bone meal is easy to make and nourishes the soil.

What Are Signs of Fertilizer Burn?

Signs of fertilizer burn are lower plant leaves turning yellow and wilting, the leaf margins and leaf tips are turning brown. Also, the roots that are black, brown, or decaying. Additionally, seeing stagnancy or negative growth. Leaf drop, fertilizer sitting on top of the soil.

An excessive amount of nitrogen might lead to big plants that produce very few or even no tomatoes, and this is because tomatoes can only produce tasty fruit on soil rich in nutrients, but adding excessive fertilizer is never a good idea. 

Signs of Fertilizer Burn

A nutrient imbalance brought on by using too much fertilizer can cause the plant’s roots to become damaged and result in various other problems. If you want your plants to be healthy, you should only feed what they need when they need it. 

These signs are ones that would tell you to be cautious about the health of your planted fruit, because some signs such as the leaves turning brown, would indicate that your plant is in stress. Basically, you should be keen enough to either removing the dead leaves, and abstaining for feeding it for a longer period of time. 


After reading this article, you should now better understand how frequently you should fertilize tomato plants. The following is a synopsis of everything that we have studied when it comes to planting tomatoes:

  • If grown in the ground, tomato plants require fertilization approximately once every two weeks. It is recommended to fertilize container-grown tomatoes once a week on average. You should fertilize your tomatoes more frequently than once a week if you grow them in porous bags.
  • Tomatoes have a specific requirement for fertilization at two stages of their development.
  • The first time is immediately after planting them, and the second is immediately before they bear fruit. This is necessary if you want to cultivate the highest quality crop possible.
  • If you make your tomato fertilizer at home, you have the added advantage of being able to tailor it to meet the specific requirements of your plants by basing it on the composition of the soil. This is a significant benefit of making your tomato fertilizer at home.
  • You can get them in granular, liquid, and water-soluble forms all in the same place. The time of year, the condition of the plants, the environment and several other factors all play a part in determining which formulation will most effectively meet the gardener’s needs.

Now that you know fertilizer options, you can take the next step toward cultivating healthy fruit. Therefore, you should not wait any longer and properly fertilize your crop to obtain a plentiful yield.

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