Beefsteak tomato is an heirloom classic. It has vigorous indeterminate vines that grow to 122-183 cm (4-6’) tall with a 50-61 cm (20-24”) spread. The vines will need to be staked to hold the large 0.2-1.0 kg (10 oz -2 lb) tomatoes. We use velcro strips to tie up both determinate and indeterminate varieties and they are reusable year after year. Beefsteak is a prolific producer of bright red, solid, meaty and juicy tomatoes that make an excellent slicer variety.
Tomatoes are a warm-season crop that are easy to grow and provide delicious fruits for a variety of culinary uses. There are many varieties to choose from, ranging in size, shape, and color. Plant tomatoes in a location that receives full sun for at least 6 hours a day and has well-drained soil. Tomatoes prefer soil that is slightly acidic with a pH between 6.0 and 6.8. Start tomato seeds indoors 6-8 weeks before the last frost date in your area. Sow seeds 6mm (¼”) deep in seed-starting soil and keep them moist until they germinate, which should occur in 7-10 days. Once the seedlings have developed their second set of true leaves, transplant them into individual pots or into a larger container with at least 30cm (12”) of soil depth. When transplanting tomato seedlings into the garden, wait until after the last frost date and the soil has warmed up to at least 10°C (50°F). Dig a hole that is deep enough to cover the root ball and up to the first set of leaves. Space plants 60-90cm (24-36”) apart in rows that are 90-120cm (36-48”) apart. Fertilize tomato plants with a balanced fertilizer every 4-6 weeks during the growing season. Water the plants deeply once a week or more frequently if the weather is hot and dry. Tomatoes are susceptible to blossom end rot, which is caused by calcium deficiency, so consider adding calcium to the soil or using a calcium-rich fertilizer. Tomato plants need support to grow upright and to prevent the fruit from touching the ground, which can cause it to rot. Use stakes, cages, or trellises to support the plants as they grow.
Harvest tomatoes when they are fully ripe and have reached their mature size and color. The fruit should be firm but slightly soft to the touch. Tomatoes can be used in a variety of culinary dishes, including salads, sauces, and salsas. Soil Conditions: Well-drained soil with a pH between 6.0 and 6.8. Planting Depth: Sow seeds 6mm (¼”) deep. Germination: 7-10 days. Height at Maturity: 60-180cm (24-72”) tall. Days to Maturity: Tomatoes can be harvested 60-100 days after planting, depending on the variety. Watering: Water deeply once a week or more frequently if the weather is hot and dry. Sun/Shade: Full sun. Spacing after Planting: Space plants 60-90cm (24-36”) apart in rows that are 90-120cm (36-48”) apart.