Best Plan To Water Tomato Plants In Pots

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Quick Answer: Best Plan To Water Tomato Plants In Pots

Tomato plants in the pots require consistent and deep watering in the morning for bountiful yields. It needs about 1 to 1.5 inches of water per week during the growing season. It may vary depending on the size of the container, the growth stage of plants, and climatic conditions. Use mulch for better retention of water. Overwatering or underwatering may cause physiological damage to the plants.

If you are confused about watering tomato plants in pots, this article provides you with the best plan to water the potted plants.

I have used my years of experience in growing and caring for tomato plants. I also compiled the insights of gardeners all over the world.

Shall we begin?

Watering Requirements Of Tomato Plants

One of the important steps in caring for tomato plants is consistent and regular watering. It may require 1 to 1.5 inches of water during the growing season.

Tomatoes are one of my favourite homegrown vegetables. It always gives me bountiful yields with proper care and maintenance.

One of the crucial steps in taking care of tomato plants is consistent and proper watering. It requires the maximum water during fruit set and development. The plant needs about 1 to 1.5 inches of water per plant during the growing season.

Why it’s critical? Watering the tomatoes in the right amount and correct way helps in the proper growth of the plants.

It is necessary to constantly check the soil for watering requirements.

How Often Should You Water Tomato Plant In Pots?

There is no one standard amount or regime for watering tomato plants. It may differ depending on the size and location of pots, the size and stage of the tomato growth, and climatic conditions. You may set a schedule depending on these factors.

Tomatoes may grow in a wide variety of pots, containers, plants, window boxes, and grow bags. 

How often should you water tomato plants? It depends on the type of tomato plants, the material and size of the pots, and the climatic conditions. There is no one standard schedule for watering the plants.

I water my potted plants daily during the hot and dry summer weather. Their root system is dense and thirsty. Likewise, my small plants don’t need much water as my bigger, full-grown tomatoes.

If your plants turn yellow and start wilting, it may be due to insufficient water. You may water the plants to bounce them back.

Factors Deciding Water of Tomato Plants

The watering of the tomato plants depends on the following factors –

  1. Size of the container– If the tomato container is significant, it may hold more soil. So, you may need to water often to keep the soil moist.
  2. Age/ Size of the plants– In the early stages of development, plants need more water to establish deeper roots. Likewise, as the root system develops when the plants grow, you may reduce the water levels. The indeterminate plants require more water than the determinate variety.
  3. Location of the pot- If you place the pot in direct sunlight, it may require more water. The potted tomato plants on the balcony may need less water.
  4. Potting soil– The tomato plants require potting mix made of potting soil, perlite, sphagnum peat moss, and compost. It helps in retaining more water, and it doesn’t require frequent watering. The sandy soil requires more water than clay soil. So, water the tomato plants accordingly.
  5. Growth of plants-The requirement for water slowly increases from germination, attains a peak during fruit development, and decreases during ripening. Once the fruits have been formed, you may reduce the water amount.
  6. Climatic conditions– The different climatic conditions that affect water requirements are rainfall, solar radiation, temperature, and relative humidity. if there is rainfall, you may reduce the water supply. In contrast, if there is a hot sun for a long period, you may have to water more frequently.

Table: Watering Requirements of Tomato Plants in Pots

Factors Watering requirement
Pot size1. Large pot- more water
2. Small pot- less water
Location of pot1. Outside in direct sunlight- more water
2. Balcony or patio- less water
Size of the plants1. Young plants- more water
2. Larger, well-developed plants- less water
Stage of tomato growth1. Fruit development- more water.
2. After fruiting- less water
Climatic condition1. Hot summer- more water
2. Rainfall and cool temperature- less water

What Happens When There Is Too Much Water?

When the tomato plants receive more water, it may cause blossom end rot, leaf curling, and fruit cracking. The prolonged exposure may damage the whole plant.

Suppose there is too much water; it may cause blossom end rot.

It is characterized by water-soaked areas on the bottom end of the fruit that may turn into brown and leathery patches.

The overwatering may also cause cracked tomato fruits, where the inside of the fruits expand more quickly than tomato skin.

When there is excess water, it may cause leaf curling. Further, it may cause blisters or bumps on the lower leaves. These may turn corky when the overwatering continues.

The roots may begin to drown and rot. The leaves may change color and start wilting. Finally, the whole plant may collapse and die.

Also, you may check this video for signs of overwatering tomato plants:

What Happens When There Is Less Water To The Tomato Plants?

The tomatoes may suffer physiological problems when the plants receive less water. It may affect the fruit quality and the yellowing of leaves. It may cause blossom end rot in fruits.

When the tomato plants do not receive consistent watering, it may reduce the uptake of calcium from the soil by the plants. This calcium deficiency causes blossom end rot in tomatoes. (Check Ways to add Calcium to Tomato Plants)

Also,  tomatoes suffer from physiological problems due to underwatering. The less water supply may cause poor fruit sets and affect the fruit quality. It may also result in the yellowing and dropping of leaves.

I discard the affected fruits so that the tomato plants spend their energy on the development of fruits.

Watering Regimen For Tomato Plants in Pots

It is essential to check the soil every day for watering requirements. You may water consistently, deeply, and slowly at the base of the plants in the morning. Use mulch to hold more water.

Now comes the critical question, how to water the tomato plants. You may consider the following tips for having a healthy tomato plant.

9 Super Tips to Water a Tomato Plant in Pots

  1. Check the soil every day– If you are not sure when to water the tomato plants, push a trowel inside the soil about four or five inches and check if it is wet. Water the soil if it is dry at 2 to 3 inches depth.
  2. Avoid wetting of tomato leaves– it is preferable to water the base of the tomato plants. Avoid splashing the soil and water on the leaves. This is to discourage soil-borne fungi.
  3. Water in the morning– Watering the tomato plants in the morning gives more time for the leaves to dry before night. It will protect the leaves from pests as the water droplets on the leaves attract pests.
  4. Water deeply and slowly– I prefer to water the tomato plants regularly and deeply. It helps in establishing a strong root system.
    • Don’t rush into watering the plants. You may fully saturate all parts of the soil by watering slowly. You may use a drip hose or irrigation for consistency in watering the plants.
  5. Use mulch– You may use organic mulch around the potted plants. It may help to slow the evaporation and hold water for a longer duration.
  6. Plant indicator plants near– Some gardeners prefer planting indicator plants, including impatiens near the tomato plants. These plants wilt immediately when there is less water suggesting the need for water for the tomato plants.
  7. Line the bottom of the pot– Make sure to line the bottom of the pot to prevent the soil from draining out when you water the plants.
  8. Cover the plants during heavy rainfall– You may cover the pots with tomato plants during heavy rainfall if placed outside. It may help to prevent the rotting of plants and dying.

Here is the video on how to water the tomato plants in container:


Why is it important to water the tomato plants slowly and deeply?

It is important to water the tomato plants deeply. It forces the roots to go deeper into the soil to get water. It helps to build a strong strong root system that in turn helps to withstand the stress of hot or cold weather. It also prevents tomato problems.

How to save an overwatered tomato plant?

If you observe overwatered plants in a pot, gently remove the plant from the pot. You may draw away the excess moisture from the root area using the newspaper. You may plant it again in a pot that fits the roots and add compost.


You may grow healthy and disease-resistant tomato plants in a container by following the above-mentioned suggestions for watering.

If you find this article, please pass it on to your friends and family. Also, you may write to me with any suggestions, feedback, and queries.