When to Plant Tomatoes in Alabama?

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Quick Answer: When to Plant Tomatoes in Alabama

The perfect time for germinating seeds in Alabama is March and February. Outdoor transplanting must be done around April for the spring harvest and July for the fall harvest.

This guide provides detailed information on tomato planting in Alabama for best dates to tomato planting tips.

Let us get started!

Best Time to Plant Tomatoes in Alabama

The dates for planting and sowing seeds must be chosen according to the chosen season and tomato varieties. Frost is a determining factor for healthy tomatoes. 

April and May are best-suited months for transplanting tomatoes outside in the Alabama spring season. 

For the fall season, July is the perfect time for transplanting.  The harvesting period of Alabama tomatoes is usually November-end. 

Regardless, one should wait for at least 15-20 days after the expected last frost before transplanting tomatoes. One must wait till the weather favours the growth of tomatoes. 

Tomato plants strive for a moderate climate and the optimal range of temperature, humidity, and pH. 

Providing the plants with sudden heat during transplanting and extreme cold during the night is detrimental to the plants.

Tomato nurtures in the soil temperature of 60-70 degrees F. The daytime temperature is 70-80 degrees F; the nighttime temperature should not fall below 55 degrees F and exceed 65 degrees F. 

Depending on the rainfall per week and how hot and humid the weather is, plants may require additional water to meet the daily water requirements. 

In areas of good rainfall, one should not water the plants every day or every week. Check the soil for the hydration of plants and water accordingly. In areas of low rainfall and humid weather, water your plants at least 1-2 inches deep every week. 

The optimum humidity that is neutral to plants is 60-70%. The detrimental range of humidity is above 90%.

The pH of the soil must be slightly acidic. It should fall between a range of 6.2 to 6.8.

Table: Frost Dates For Alabama

CityFirst Frost DateLast Frost Date
SelmaNovember 11March 25
MillbrookNovember 6March 24
DemopolisNovember 2 April 1
MinterNovember 12March 21

Check out this video on when to plan tomatoes –

How to Take Care of Tomatoes in Alabama

A wholesome tomato demands a plentiful supply of organic matter and nutritive elements like calcium, sulfur, nitrogen, phosphorous, potassium, and many others. 

Mulch the soil with a two inches-thick layer of leaf, hay, or straw and organic matter. It limits the evaporation of moisture from the soil. The thick layer of mulch will shield the soil from drying strong winds and scalding sun. It keeps a check on weed growth. It complements the nutritive value of the soil. 

Water the roots of the plant. It will maintain the moisturization of the soil. The soil must be well-drained and finely textured.

Use the drip-irrigation system for watering the roots of the plants. The method is easy, efficient, and cheap.

Check out this video on how to plant tomatoes in Alabama-

Keep the plants in an area of maximum sunlight with no big trees. Cover the plants with plastic sheets when the rainfall has crossed the optimum range limit. During the scorching heat of August and September, keep the plants inside.

Stake and cage the tomato plants for physical support to the plants. Keep a distance of 60*24-36 inches between two indeterminate staked plants.

Keep the garden clean and dry. Do not keep the garden wet. Avoid wetting of foliage and stems. Use disinfected tools only.  

Augment the soil with a 5-10-5 fertilizer. Apply it evenly to the base of the plant by mixing it in water. Add fertilizer before germination and after transplanting.

Tomato Cultivars of Alabama

The best tomato cultivars in Alabama are –

Atkinson, Better Boy, Big Beef, Celebrity, Husky Gold, Monte Carlo, Small Fry, and Sweet Chelsea (cherries).

Other varieties are – Amelia, Bella Rosa, Crista, Mountain Gem, Mountain Magic, Mountain Merit, Red Bount, Red Defender, Mountain Honey, BHN 4.

FAQ’s

What is the planting zone of Alabama?

The best way to improve the garden soil is by adding organic matter like compost, leaves, sawdust, and hay. 

How to improve garden soil?

The best way to improve the garden soil is by adding organic matter like compost, leaves, sawdust, and hay. 

Monitor the pH of the soil periodically. Add crushed eggshells and limestone. Add fertilizers to it. Use finely textured soil.

What practices must be followed to control disease outbreaks in the tomato garden?

The best solution is to use disease-resistant varieties. 
Crop rotation at every two-year gap is effective in controlling disease prevalence in the garden. 
Clean all the soil and plant debris from the garden field.
Perform soil fumigation or soil sterilization.

Summary

I hope this guide was helpful and assisted you in growing some fantastic tomatoes in your Alabama garden.

Please share more recommendations on planting tomatoes, if any.

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