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We have long been accustomed to the fact that tomatoes are an annual crop. At the end of August or September, the harvest was harvested - that's all. Waste plants are sent to compost or burned. If this is not done, then they will still be beaten by late blight and the very first night frosts. Have you tried to dig out bushes of low-growing varieties of tomatoes, place them in pots and bring them into a warm room? It is even better if they were originally planted in containers. What do you think will happen to them?
And the following will happen:
- all small and underdeveloped fruits will fill and ripen;
- in winter the leaves of tomatoes will turn yellow and some of them will dry out, but the bushes themselves will remain alive;
- in late February or early March, young stepsons will begin to grow from the axillary buds on the trunk;
- flowers will bloom on these new branches at the end of March;
- in May, you will have tomatoes with almost ripe fruits on your windowsill.
But this will only be so if you can preserve the tomato plants in the winter months - to provide them with a dormant period. To do this, they must be in a cool, but not cold place, have enough light and a moderate amount of moisture. In a city apartment, this may be a window sill, near which there are no heating appliances.
Watering such "perennial tomatoes" must be very careful - 1-2 times a week - just so that the earth does not dry out completely. With the appearance of young green shoots, watering should be increased.
Supplementing with artificial light in spring is usually not required for such tomatoes, unless the pots are on the north window. In March-April, you can feed with a weak solution of fertilizer for tomatoes or pour fresh soil into the pots.
By the way, some of the appeared stepchildren of tomatoes can be pinched off when they reach 4-5 cm.If you stick them in wet soil or sawdust, then in a couple of weeks you will have excellent seedlings that will begin to bloom a few weeks earlier than the one grown from seeds. You just need to make sure that the ground in the first days is constantly wet.
Such seedlings do not require special care. It does not need to be supplemented or dived - you can plant it immediately in separate cups, from which you will plant directly on the garden bed. Young plants completely retain all the characteristics and properties of the mother bush, since they were born as a result of vegetative reproduction.
And what will happen to last year's tomato bushes next?
If you take care of them as for ordinary houseplants - watering, feeding, picking off unnecessary stepchildren on time, they will delight you with the harvest. Perhaps only this harvest will be slightly less than in a greenhouse or in an open field. And in the fall, everything will be repeated from the beginning.
The only thing to remember is that not all varieties of tomatoes are suitable for home cultivation - many of them under these conditions are strongly affected by top rot. But varieties such as Gift, Balcony Miracle, Precious, Grape, Sweet Tooth grow splendidly on the windowsill.
Tomatoes can grow and bear fruit in the same pot or container for 3-4 years. And maybe longer. Who doesn't believe, try it yourself!