How To Grow Tomatoes In Kentucky: Everything You Need To Know

You want to know whether it is possible to grow tomatoes in Kentucky in a decent manner?

Of course it is and I will also show you how to grow tomato plants in Kentucky in the best possible manner in this article!

Not only will you get lots of information on climatic conditions and how you can use them to your advantage but you will also learn a lot when it comes to watering your plants and many other things that will greatly affect the overall success of your tomato growing project.

After reading this article, you will be able to avoid some common mistakes many other people make when growing tomatoes in Kentucky at home and may also be able to give some helpful advice to your loved ones.

Without further ado, let’s get right into it!

Do tomatoes grow well in Kentucky?

While it is possible to grow tomatoes in Kentucky in a pretty decent manner, you should still know that you may have a harder time doing so compared to people who grow tomatoes in California or other sunnier places where climatic conditions may be even better.

How long does it take to grow tomatoes in Kentucky?

You will usually be able to grow tomatoes from seed to harvest within 14 to 18 weeks.

However, if you want to rely on seedlings instead of growing tomatoes from seed and plant your seedlings around June, you may be able to harvest your tomato plants within two months.

How big do tomato plants grow in Kentucky?

Tomato plants in Kentucky can get quite big and you should therefore provide them with lots of space in the vertical.

Hence, it may be much better to grow your tomato plants in your garden instead of using your balcony since your plants would just have much more freedom to grow wherever they want and may therefore provide you with much higher yields at the end of the growing cycle.

Can you expect great yields when growing tomatoes in Kentucky?

If you care well for your plants, you may be able to get pretty high yields and even beginners can see great results when growing tomatoes in Kentucky as long as they follow some basic advice in this article and are also willing to put in some work into their growing project.

When to grow tomatoes in Kentucky?

I suggest you wait with growing tomatoes outdoors until April or even May so you no longer have to worry about spring frost that would let your plants decay.

However, if you still want to start earlier in the year, you may be better off pre-growing tomato plants indoors so you can start as early as March, grow healthy seedlings indoors and transplant them outdoors later on when climatic conditions are warmer outside.

Can you grow tomatoes in Kentucky in winter?

Growing tomatoes in Kentucky in winter will only be possible if you use a heated room with lots of artificial lighting, for instance a greenhouse, since it would simply be too cold to grow tomatoes outdoors in Kentucky during this period of the year without any protection.

Can you grow tomatoes in Kentucky multiple times per year?

Since winters in Kentucky can be pretty cold and the main season for growing tomatoes is between April and September, it may be hard to grow multiple batches of tomato plants within this rather short period of time and you may be better off focusing on just a single batch and growing it as best as possible instead.

What tomato varieties grow best in Kentucky?

For growing tomatoes in Kentucky, you should choose a variety that gets along with cool weather early in the year but also strives during hot summer months. I listed some of the best varieties in this regard below:

  • Earl Girl Tomatoes
  • Legend tomatoes
  • Nugget Tomatoes
  • Manitoba Tomatoes
  • Zebra Tomatoes
  • Beefstead Tomatoes
  • Brandywine Tomatoes
  • Cherokee Tomatoes
  • Jolly Tomatoes

Is it better to grow tomatoes in Kentucky from seeds or seedlings?

While it can make sense for people growing tomato plants from seedlings instead of seeds since it would be the much faster option, you would still skip some important steps in the growing cycle and may just not get the full growing experience people growing tomatoes from seed will be able to get.

Should you start growing tomatoes in Kentucky indoors?

While you could start growing tomato plants in Kentucky indoors early in spring and transplant your seedlings outdoors later on, it is also possible to just wait until climatic conditions are suitable to directly grow your tomato plants outdoors from seed to harvest between late April and May.

How to water tomato plants in Kentucky?

Even though tomato plants will usually not need lots of water while they are still young and climatic conditions are rather cool, things change pretty quickly once your plants get bigger and it gets much warmer outdoors and you may therefore have to water your tomato plants even multiple times per day during extremely hot summer periods.

Do you have to protect tomatoes against the sun in Kentucky?

Since your tomato plants will not be exposed to excessive radiation in Kentucky early in the year, there will be no need to protect your tomato plants from the sun.

Instead, you can just let them grow and once radiation becomes more intensive, your plants will already be big enough to deal with this issue on their own.

Will wild animals feed on tomatoes in Kentucky?

Groundhogs, birds and squirrels are just some of the hungry animals that may try feeding on your tomato plants in Kentucky and it is therefore advisable to protect your plants installing a fence.

Tomato pests & plant diseases in Kentucky

Since slugs, aphids, cutworms, nematodes and many other pests may try to get their share of your tomato plants, you should also get some information on how to treat tomato pests and plant diseases in a proper manner.

When to harvest tomatoes in Kentucky?

If you start growing tomatoes outdoors between April and May, you will usually be able to harvest your tomato plants in August.

However, please note that it may also take you a little bit more time since the growing cycle greatly depends on the overall conditions you provide to your plants and also on the tomato variety you want to grow.

Additional Information for Growing Tomatoes at Home

I hope you got lots of helpful information out of this article so you will be able to grow tomatoes in Kentucky at home in a perfectly fine manner.

If you also want to get better at growing tomatoes at home in general, you should also check out my tomato grower’s guide.

Moreover, you may also want to have a look at my growing tomatoes FAQ section where you will get answers to many questions that often come up in the tomato growing process.


Own research.

About the Author

My name is Andreas and I’m really passionate about our environment and also about growing plants. In fact, I have grown several different plants over many years. I love to see my own plants grow and also always try new things to improve my overall conditions at home.

In my blog posts, I want to share my experiences with you so that you can become successful in growing various different plants and improving your home as well, even though you might still be a beginner right now.

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