When to Plant Tomatoes in Oregon: (Dates + Best Practices)

Tomatoes can be planted in the late spring and early summer in Oregon from the 1st of May to the 15th of June.

Let’s look at When to plant tomatoes in Oregon. We’ll discuss the best planting dates for the state and also look at what to consider before planting your tomato seeds.

When to plant tomatoes in Oregon?

When to plant tomatoes in Oregon

Plant tomatoes in Oregon when the soil temperature is 50 to 70 degrees Fahrenheit. This is usually considered May to mid-June in most areas, although you can plant them as late as August, depending on the variety. It’s best not to plant tomatoes too early in the year as they are likely to become damaged by frost.

It’s best to wait until the soil temperature reaches about 65 degrees Fahrenheit for several weeks in a row before planting so tomatoes will grow properly. If possible, buy tomato plants from a local nursery or home improvement store.

If you do not have access to healthy plants, try starting your own seedlings indoors. This allows you to get a head start on the growing season. You can plant indoor plants in March or April and move them outside when the weather gets warmer.

Tips for planting tomatoes

Tomato Care Oregon, best practices

Now that we know WHEN to plant tomatoes in Oregon, lets take a look at HOW to best care for them.

Tomatoes need at least 6 hours of sunlight per day to produce ripe fruit, so choose a sunny location for your garden bed. Completely prepare the garden bed before you plant tomatoes. Dig a 12-inch deep trench and add 5 inches of compost or well-rotted manure. Planted tomatoes need a lot of nutrients to grow, so plan on taking care of your garden bed for the next couple of years after planting.

Use a tomato cage or sturdy stakes and string to support taller indeterminate tomato plants. Plant each seedling at least 1 foot apart from its neighbor in every direction. Plan on at least two tomato plants per person when it comes time to harvest the fruit.

Inspect the tomato blossoms daily. When they have been open for 5 or 6 days, pollinate them by brushing your hand across all the blossoms. This job is best done in the morning.

Water deeply into the soil but do not water the leaves of the tomato plants, or you could get fungal infections. Water just enough to keep the soil moist but not soggy, especially if your garden is in a dry location.

Do not fertilize until at least ten days after planting tomatoes in Oregon. Take care of the nitrogen needs by watering with a diluted liquid fertilizer every couple of weeks during the growing season. Always follow the directions on the label when using fertilizer.

Tomato Growing Tips

Final Thoughts

Consider the weather conditions, temperature, and variety of tomatoes before deciding when to plant. In most areas of Oregon, tomato plants or seeds can be planted outdoors from the 1st of May to the 15th of June.

You may choose to plant your seeds in pots indoors to get a head start on the growing season. Acclimate your tomato seedlings to the outdoor conditions once it gets warmer. Set the plants pot outside in a protected area for a few hours per day.

When your seedlings become stressed from too much sun or wind, move them back indoors for a few hours, then try again. Continue this process until they can stay outside overnight.