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How Do I Prune Tomato Plants?

Updated: Jul 23, 2020

Pruning your tomato plants can help you avoid diseases and pests getting to them. It is a simple task that can be done with a pair of snips. In the video below Amanda shows how to prune the


Pruning methods are dependant on the variety of tomato plant you have (determinate or indeterminate)

  • Determinate tomatoes require very little pruning

  • Indeterminate tomatoes require more pruning to keep them under control and growing in the desired direction

  • If your growing space is limited vertically and you would rather more bushy plants than less pruning is needed. Plants can then fill out

Prune/Stake method (Growing vertical)

  • Lower yield per plant but higher yield, space-wise because you can grow more plants

  • Plants grow up rather than out

  • Pruning lower leaves on the stem creates more airflow and reduces the chances of diseases and pests because the leaves aren’t touching the ground

  • Pruning up 15-18 inches off the ground will help prevent the transfer of diseases from the soil to the plant…spoors and bacteria can splash up from the soil when it rains or when the plant is being watered, and land on the low-lying leaves.

Common tomato plant diseases?

Sunscald, Catfacing, Blossom End Rot, Blossom Drop, Fruit Cracks, Poor Fruit Set, Leaf Roll, Viral Leaf Roll, Herbicidal Leaf Roll, Puffiness (Hollow Tomatoes) Tomato Pith Necrosis, Bacterial Canker, Anthracnose, Early Blight, Late Blight, Septoria Leaf Spot, Powdery Mildew, Fusarium Wilt, and Verticillium Wilt

Common tomato plant pests?

Hornworms, Potato Beetles, Spider Mites, Tomato Cutworms, Aphids, Whiteflies and Stink Bugs.