Growing tomatoes for the first time and not sure how many trusses you will get per plant? You might also have heard that you should limit the number of trusses on your tomatoes, but is this true?
How Many Tomato Trusses Per Plant?
A tomato plant can develop many trusses per plant if allowed to do so, there is no hard limit other than your growing season. 10-12 trusses are pretty regular on larger plants.
However, not many tomato plants will reach that limit, and not all gardeners will say you should even let your tomato plants get near that limit, so why is this?
Well, the general thought process is that the trusses developing later in the year, say late summer or autumn here in the UK will not have enough time to ripen fully.
These tomatoes will still be green as the cold weather comes in and the plant dies back. For this reason, the classic advice is to limit the number of trusses on each plant.
Here is a photo I recently took of one of my tomato plants and then decided to count the trusses. I know it is not the best image in the world but I have done my best to count all of the different trusses on there.
So there are 8 on this plant already with more still to come at the top as it keeps on growing ever higher.
Topping Off Tomato Plants
Many growers recommend topping off your tomato plants by pinching out the main growing tip and limiting the plant to 5 or 6 trusses.
The idea is that while you will not get as much produce, the stuff you will get should be larger due to the plant putting its effort into much fewer fruit in total.
If you let the plant keep developing more and more trusses then it will be putting lots of energy into growing tomatoes which will never ripen.
This is just a fact, there simply won’t be enough time for these new flowers to turn into fully ripened tomatoes before cold weather comes along and stops the plant in its tracks.
So while I have just distilled the virtues to you of topping off tomatoes let me let you into a little secret, I don’t do it with mine and let them develop as many trusses as they please.
Why is this? Well, not all the tomatoes I grow reach ripeness this way, that’s true enough, but you can still eat green tomatoes. You just need to put more effort into preparing them.
And by allowing your plant to keep growing and keep producing even well into autumn you just end up with a lot, lot more tomatoes, even if many of the later ones will be green.
Green tomato ideas
Here are just some of the things you can do with green tomatoes.
- Fried Green Tomatoes
- Green Ketchup
- & many many more ideas
Seriously, the amount of things you can do with them is almost endless, just have a google for green tomato recipes.
So while all your tomatoes may not ripen, you end up with a lot more tomatoes if you don’t top out your plants. And these tomatoes can still be eaten and can be just as useful as nice ripe red tomatoes.