Indeterminate tomato plants can get quite big. And if you have a limited amount of growing space and are trying to keep them under control, they can be a lot of work too.
That’s where dwarf tomato plants come in.
Dwarf Tomato Plants
Dwarf tomato plants only get 2-4 feet tall, making them a perfect choice for gardeners with limited growing space. They’re also a perfect choice for gardeners who don’t want to prune their tomato plants.
I like to grow them in my garage rooftop garden because their small stature keeps them from being blown over on windy days.
The Dwarf Tomato Breeding Project, led by Craig LeHoullier and Patrina Nuske-Small, has released more than 100 different dwarf tomato varieties, with the help of many volunteers. The selection is huge and includes tons of colours, shapes, sizes, and flavours.
There is a dwarf tomato variety to suit anyone who wants to grow low-maintenance tomatoes! One of my favourites is a variety called ‘Dwarf Kelly Green.’
In the Kitchen
‘Dwarf Kelly Green’ is a medium-sized, green-when-ripe tomato. Because it is green when ripe, you can’t tell if it’s ripe by colour. But you can tell if it’s ripe by feel. Lightly squeeze the tomatoes once they reach full size, and if they’re soft, they’re ready to eat.
‘Dwarf Kelly Green’ is a good producer, which means it will give you many chances to become an expert at knowing when to pick green-when-ripe tomatoes.
As for flavour, it’s delicious! It has a well-balanced, sweet flavour. It’s perfect for fresh eating, whether it’s sliced on a sandwich, or in a salad.
Grow Your Own
Start seeds for Dwarf Kelly Green as you would any other tomato.
Once in the garden, these compact plants don’t need pruning. But I do recommend using a cage or stake to keep the plant supported.
Click here to read more about the Dwarf Tomato Project. [https://www.dwarftomatoproject.net/]
Emma Biggs is a 13-year-old gardener and garden communicator. Emma raised over 130 tomato varieties in her Toronto garden in 2018—gardening in containers, in straw bales on a driveway, in a neighbour’s yard, in wicking beds under a walnut tree, and on the garage roof. Her garden is the source of many of her stories—and the source of produce that she sells in her neighborhood. In 2015, at the age of nine, Emma co-authored of Grow Gardeners, Kid-Tested Gardening with Children with her father and started helping him at garden talks and workshops. For the past couple of years, Emma has been giving her own talks at libraries, seed exchanges, garden clubs, and garden shows. Emma is the co-host of The Garage Gardeners Radio Show. She hosts kids gardening videos on the From Dirt to Dishes gardening channel on YouTube. Her latest book, Gardening with Emma, helps kids find the fun in gardening (and helps adults remember how much fun gardening is!)