transplanting tomato plants

Asked March 5, 2013, 2:26 PM EST

i am new to colorado springs and am wanting to grow tomatoes from seeds. we bought these cases of bulbs and planted 2 to 3 seeds in each one. the plants are about 3 inches tall now and im not sure when to transfer them. and i have no clue when the frost usually stops here. my husband wants to plant them in pots and just bring them inside at night but we didnt know if that would be a good idea. any advice or help would be greatly appriciatec. thank you

El Paso County Colorado fruits and vegetables horticulture

1 Response

I'm not sure what the bulbs are, but if you invert one and carefully pop out one of the seedlings - look at the rootball...if mostly roots/little soil visible and it holds together easily, then it may already be past time to shift seedlings to a deep 6" pot.

Last frost in CO Springs averages May 6. Many gardeners set out hardened tomato transplants prior to that in "walls o' water" or similar protective structures. Harden seedlings/plants over the 2-3 weeks prior to May 6 by gradually exposing them to ever-increasing exposure to wind, sunlight and colder temperatures. Plants can come back into the garage at night if temperatures could drop below 32.

Many gardeners find that hardened tomato transplants set out late May "catch up" with those set out earlier under walls o' water or around May 6.

See also:
http://www.cmg.colostate.edu/gardennotes/720.html
http://www.cmg.colostate.edu/gardennotes/743.pdf
http://www.cmg.colostate.edu/gardennotes/717.html
http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/garden/02949.html
http://www.ext.colostate.edu/pubs/garden/07220.html