Growing Tomatoes: Determinate Vs. Indeterminate Explained

If you’ve ever grown tomatoes, you may have been a bit confused by the words “determinate” or “indeterminate” on the package. Today we’re clearing up the confusion for you!

Tomato plants come in two basic types: determinate, or indeterminate. Some people think this just means one type gets larger than the other, or one needs staking while the other doesn’t.

But that’s not all it means. It also relates to when the plants bear fruit, which can be important when choosing what kind of tomatoes to grow. If you like to can your tomatoes or preserve them for use during the rest of the year, you may want to choose a determinate type, so you can get a huge harvest to preserve all at once. However, if you’re wanting salads all summer long, indeterminate may be the better choice.

For me, I like to have both – salad tomatoes as long as possible, and determinate canning types, for my late summer canning activities!

This quick video from The Grow Network explains more about how to choose between them, so you can decide the best mix of tomato varieties for your garden:

Rose S.

An avid gardener since childhood, I love sharing my passion for gardening with others! I have gardened in a number of different climates and settings, from large fenced garden plots, to tiny patio and container gardens, and I firmly believe that everyone can learn to grow at least some of their own food - no matter where you live. Growing your own food can help you take control of your own health and food supply, and there has never been a better time to get started!

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