Think these pots are, well, you might say…unattractive? Well, get over it! These super lightweight containers are your ticket to feasting on home-grown tomatoes all summer long–whether or not you have a vegetable garden.  The beauty of growing tomatoes in containers is that almost anyone can grown them. No excuses.

All you need is a patio, a deck, a stairwell, an open spot in the yard, even a simple stoop will do. As long as the plant gets lots of sun. Most experts say you need a minimum of six hours full sun daily, and that eight hours is best. Even if your plants look unhappy at some point, acting listless during late-summer heat or blasted by Santa Ana winds, you can simply shift them to a more protected spot.

Tomato experts say these special containers, sold here at Roger’s for about $24 each, are the perfect size to grow a productive, robust plant. They’re also biodegradable and completely compostable, so you don’t have to worry about leaving a mark on the planet. Ideally, you want a minimum of a 15-gallon pot per tomato plant. When happy, they get big and will need sturdy staking. These containers are made from paper pulp, so they keep the roots cool while the tomatoes bask in direct sunshine. Unlike clay or terracotta pots, these don’t dry out nearly as quickly and keep the roots cool. And they drain well, which is key. Tomatoes in containers need frequent watering, sometimes daily in summer, so you might consider a drip system.

According to Tomato guru, Scott Daigre of TomatoMania–the tomato roadshow that stopped by here several weeks ago–tomato plants are big eaters, however; so you need to use a good potting mix (he doesn’t recommend potting soil in containers) and be generous with quality amendments. He recommends Dr. Earth tomato products, which also are available here. Daigre suggested sticking to tomato plant varieties, whether they are heirloom or hybrids, that produce tomatoes on the smaller size–baseball size or smaller, such as cherry varieties–for the most success in containers.

 So come on down and we can help you pick out the best seedlings, and help set you up with everything you need to have fresh tomatoes just steps away to go with your sizzling burgers or healthy salads all summer long! Once you start enjoying fresh, organic tomatoes you raised yourself,  even these earthy-looking containers will grow on you!