How to Prune Tomatoes for Maximum Yield and Plant Health

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Pruning tomatoes is a topic of much debate – everyone seems to have their own method. This video looks at the two major types of tomatoes – determinate tomatoes and indeterminate tomatoes and the differences of pruning each. We also discuss the different parts of a tomato plant so you can look at your plant and actually know what’s going on in the mess of stems, leaves, and flowers.

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31 Comments
  1. Epic Gardening says

    Any pruning methods you guys use that I didn't talk about? DROP EM BELOWWWW!

  2. Tifreak ! says

    Wondering why no one explains the issues growing indeterminate indoors? All the sites say only grow cherry tomatoes and other determinate varieties. Anyhow, I have T5 lights, a few other LED and will give it a try! I do have the space inside as well in grow bags. Have big beef and a few other slicers!

  3. loveto playtu says

    What do you mean by "sterilized shears". Are they as type of gardening shears or do you sterilize your shears regularly. Please advise.

  4. Rob Ibarra says

    Kevin, based on your experience, what's a good support system to use (trellis, etc) for grow bag containers?

  5. TheSkypeConverser says

    thank you for all of this free content!!

  6. Miriam Boyce says

    He looks similar to Lionel Richie

  7. VcentG plays Games says

    Soooo what do you do if you didn't prune your plant and have a giant beast. If you wait too long you just leave it? Cause I've got 2 massive cherry tomato plants with like 5 ft main stems and 3-4 ft suckers with who knows how many suckers on them. He just said don't wait as long as he did, so I assume pruning the massive suckers now would shock the plant? Or…?

  8. Lexi Brown says

    Kevin, I love watching your videos! Your content is very informative and entertaining! Could you make a video about plant diseases? What to watch for? How to prevent them?

  9. David Richard Williams says

    Congratulations on such good tips. My respects.

  10. Brandy Sims says

    Your videos are my FAVORITE! It's such a relief to see someone who can speak well, choose his words well, provide necessary details in an organized way, AND get a lot of info without having to watch for 30 minutes! Thank you for sharing your passion and GIFT with us!

  11. Shawn Winegar says

    Why did I wait until NOW to watch this?!? I pruned wrong ALL season. I'm still getting a decent harvest, but could've been better. 1st year, lessons learned!

  12. evan388 tgz vloggz says

    thank you for this great tips, keep going sir

  13. 澳凯留学移民 says

    Thank you so much for the video. Just set up our backyard garden bed and bought some tomatoes. This video is what I needed. Learnt so much!

  14. Steven Friedman says

    I am at 9 weeks now into growing my Roma tomato plant from a seed and it's starting to flower now without any pruning. It's beginning to get extra bushy and I'm worried I waited way too late to start. Gonna try to follow this video as close as possible and hopefully not mess anything up. Will definitely use one of the suckers to try to grow another plant. Thank you for the tips!

  15. Babar Khalid says

    inch distancing, and now it’s been 15 days since we have transplanted the tomato to field beds, can I now plant 3 garlics in between each tomato plant and along with it can I prepare Basil flat bed to plant it later with garlic in octagonal design spacing of 12 inches and along with garlic planting can 2 plants of marigold be planted on the side borders in between tomato gaps ?

  16. Jolene Edwards says

    Watching all your videos on growing tomatoes and I see you and everyone else plants their seeds indoors and then plants them low in the ground for a better root system. What about planting the seeds straight into the ground? Is it going to be a weaker plant?

  17. Kelly Jennings says

    Is it not suggested or possible to protect your tomato plant through the winter and have it produce again the next year? Maybe by covering it to protect it from frost? If you propagate the suckers late, will they grow the next season?

  18. Elvis Mendez says

    Why would you want to remove the suckers below the first flower bud on the determinate plant?

  19. Joy's World Hobbies Baking, Gardening says

    I have learn alot about pruning, I have a tomato and I would like to prune it.. this is very helpful

  20. TJ says

    In Wa above you and the wife and I are just winging it! on 3 acres and started with a 1,500 ish sqft garden. We've got about 10 varieties @ 20 tomatoe plants total. This year was all about trimming and pruning and learning. Appreciate the tips/tricks. Keep up the great content and you got a sub from me!

  21. Michelle Lewis says

    I love the trellis, pot and crate combo..

  22. Richard Biney says

    I have done everything wrong before watching this video

  23. Gregory Ervin says

    I actually learned this from growing weed, but the same principles apply to tomatoes here. When you're topping a plant (I consider topping a specific type of pruning), what you're doing is forcibly redistributing the plant hormone Auxin. Auxin naturally works against gravity and accumulates in the top of the plant. Auxin has two main roles in this case: promoting growth and maintaining apical dominance, and inhibiting lateral growth of down stem branches. When you top a plant, you remove this accumulation of this hormone. Obviously the now missing stem no longer has apical dominance, but is also no longer inhibiting down stem growth. As a result the Auxins begin accumulating in the two top most side branches, giving you two main stems that aren't inhibiting each others growth. In the world of indoor gardening, this is useful to help you develop a bushy even canopy to get even light absorption, since our lights are stationary directly above the plant.Instead of topping, an alternate technique used for this, is low stress training. This is where you bend the plant over in an arch shape, creating a new topmost spot for auxins to accumulate and forming a secondary main stem without the damage from topping. Interestingly, in your plant here you can see this happening just from nature. As that plant started leaning over towards the sun, auxins accumulate more on on side, and that at least contributed to those extra main stems.Certainly not an expert either so if anyone has corrections I'm all ears!

  24. Leanna Skiba says

    Big thanks for the information! I was only taking low disease prone leaves. Now I know about the suckers lol 🙂

  25. Liz Gage says

    Wish I had watched this at the beginning of our season. 🤣 I did so much wrong. 😔 And, my plants were unfortunately plagued by blossom rot. 🥺 There's always next year! Thank you! 😉

  26. Judi Wilkinson says

    Thanks for a great lesson! Love the frame as well. Thank you ☺️☺️☺️👏👏👏

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  28. Amy Jones says

    My first time planting tomatoes this year, I was so proud of how big & bushy they were getting but we have very little productions. Now I realize they are way out of control! I'm going t o do my best to prune them, thanks for the information!

  29. Gabrielle Gibby says

    How close to my first frost date should i top chop my plants?

  30. Dan Schulte says

    I learned a lot. Thank you.

  31. Mads Kihl says

    I just love the morning rutine, few silent minutts before kids get up. Look over our plants, water if needed and take away some weeds. Its therapy tbh. Im testing iout different stuff, from raised beds, buckets, trying to make new trees, and now also hydroponics. All for learning. As a family we love to watch it grow and looking forward to start planning next season. Because next year we will have a plan behind it all and start much earlier.PS forgot to mention, i just love the channel, its what got me started in the first place

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