Now a day, it is not only a dream to enjoy fresh healthy tomato sauce at home. You can even make the homemade tomato sauce by growing Roma tomato (Solanum lycopercium). They are introduced in 1955. They set the quality for paste tomatoes because they are thick-walled and meaty in form. Which also produces a significant crop of bright red egg-shaped tomatoes. Each fruit of tomato weighs about 2 ounces which measure 3 inches long and has few seeds. They had all the attributes for cooking down into a thick sauce. Moreover, they are also tasty when eaten raw. They are not too juicy within the pan in comparison to traditional slicing tomatoes.
What is Roma Tomato?
A Roma tomato generally is known as a paste tomato. They have a thicker fruit wall, fewer seeds, and a denser but grainier flesh. Roma tomato tends to be oblong in shape and known heavy due to its size. They also tend to be more firm than non-Roma or paste tomato. They had determinate growth habit which indicates that once they give full ripen harvest, instead of giving ripen harvest throughout the season. When they choose to be eaten raw they are at their best taste and also good for cooking.
Types of Roma tomato:
There are six amazing types of Roma tomatoes which you will definitely like to plant in your garden or lawn.
Plum regal are meaty, flavorful and red Roma tomatoes with good immunity towards early and blight diseases. They are easy to grow and need high fertile soil rich in phosphorus and moderate in nitrogen content.
It may be a bright red and oval-shaped Roma tomato variety. It had effective pest resistance and features a formidable growth in open grounds with fertile soil and moderately cool temperature.
These varieties are sweet in taste and ideal for preparing delicious tomato sauces and pastes. They are easy to grow and soil requirements are the same as other Roma tomato species required.
Heinz is also a superior Roma tomato variety that nourishes large, plumy, flavorful and full of nutrition filled tomatoes. It is also rich in lycopene which acts as an efficient antioxidant that nourishes the body with several health benefits but makes sure to grow them in organic-rich and well-drained soil among water on a daily basis.
Martino Roma tomato:
They are delicious in taste, pear-shaped and slightly red tomatoes having good yield and early blight resistance. Its growing condition is comparable different than other Roma tomatoes.
San Marzano tomato:
San Marzano is widely utilized in seasoning, sauce preparation, and exotic salad toppings. They are bright red long fruits with rich taste and thrive well in fertile, well-drained and organic soil.
Tips to grow Roma tomato:
Roma tomatoes do not seem to be considered as heirloom tomatoes. They are determinate tomatoes that get older to 1m tall. It is suitable for the gardeners which had limited space to grow a tomato. They will be cultivating in garden beds yet as in containers. The time taken for the maturation of Roma tomatoes is about 75- 90 days which goes through different stages from germination to maturity.
The cultivation of Roma tomato is not much different than the cultivation of other varieties. They will differ in shape and size but the growing process and requirements are similar. You simply just ensure that they get enough sunshine, water for irrigation, fertile organic matter rich soil and also protection against different pests and diseases. You will grow the Roma tomatoes in your garden bed as well as in pots.
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A pot with a minimum size of 14-16 inches’ height and 20-24 inches’ diameter are best suitable for the growth of Roma tomatoes. It also provides extra depth to the plants and can easily absorb water which also induces nutrients from the soil and helping them to attain their optimum growth.
Place of growing tomato:
Always select site which is under lots of sunlight at least a minimum for 6 hours is essential. If you are living in tropics, then protect the plant from the scorching of the afternoon sun. It is safe to mention that a good amount of sunshine is the main component of a productive and successful harvest.
Roma tomatoes thrive well in organic-rich, loamy, well-drained and lightweight soil with high temperatures. It can easily tolerate slightly acidic soil conditions and pH ranges from 6 to 6.5. Always ensure the feature of sand and organic matter if your soil is just too heavy and soggy because it may hinder the aeration.
Irrigate your plants regularly. The growing Roma tomatoes require lots of water. In colder climate ensure the proper watering of plants, especially when they used to grow in an exceedingly partially shaded spot. They require a lot of water at the time of fruiting. The lack of water may cause splitting r cracking in the outer covering of tomatoes.
Pruning of plants:
Roma tomatoes are the determinate habit of growing so they stop growing and producing fruits after reaching a specific height in nature and they belong to the bush kind of tomatoes. Therefore, they do not require pruning.
If you grow Roma tomato in a container during the season, you can fertilize the plant with liquid fish fertilizer once every week and also fertilize the plant at the time of fruit set. Also, ass balanced slow-release fertilizer during planting. The application of manure or compost time to time is also recommended. Side by side avoids excessive nitrogen fertilization because it can affect the quality of tomatoes.
Pest and diseases:
These tomatoes are resistant to many pests and diseases. In diseases, they are commonly infected by blossom end rot and fungal diseases if the leaves kept moist for a long period of time. Tomato hornworms can be controlled by handpicking or by using neem oil or even you can control them by companion planting.
Roma requires about 70-75 days to grow fully ripe fruits and even required more weeks to totally ripe all the fruits. They need really good soil enriched with essential nutrients that support the vigorous growth of the plant before setting the first fruits and growth of remaining tomato fruits.
Well-grown and ripen tomatoes are more delicious in taste and flavorful as compared to fruits plucked before maturity. Ensure that you do not harvest tomatoes until they fully ripen. It is a determinate type growth habit so all the tomato ripens at the same time. Harvest Roma tomato when it turns red from all the sides and skin remains slightly soft.
Caring for Roma:
Caring for Roma is comparatively easy, ensure that the level of moisture in the soil and the amount of nutrients that they need lots of sunshine. Also, choose some resistant Roma VF varieties is very recommended. Here VF stands for verticillium and Fusarium wilt resistant variety.
If after adopting a precautionary measure disease happen, remember that Roma has a relatively short vegetation period and uses chemicals in step with the instructions. Sometimes it is better to throw away a problematic plant than to usage of chemicals.
Roma tomato uses:
With high levels of sugar and pectin, together with less moisture and fewer seeds than most tomatoes. Roma is ideal for cooking down into thick and smooth sauces and pastes. They contain extra acid too which makes them a decent choice for canning, where acid is important to stop botulism. Roma tomatoes will be frozen and sun-dried.
The key point to take care while growing Roma:
Here is the following key factor to take care while growing Roma tomatoes.
Avoid planting your Roma tomatoes too early. Check a frost calendar online and it will tell you about the forecast before you opt to plant. If you plant them too early, they will not grow as healthy as possible.
Do not place your tomatoes near a windowsill to get ripen. This may cause them to rot before they are fully ripe.
Do not refrigerate your fresh tomatoes because they may change the taste and flavor of the tomato.
Now you got all the tips, what are you waiting for go and cultivate your own Roma tomato to enjoy the fresh healthy sauce.