The ‘Tiny Tim’ variety’s dwarfed shape makes it the perfect balcony tomato. Find out more about this tiny bush tomato in the following article.
The ‘Tiny Tim’ tomato is probably one of the smallest tomato varieties. Though they usually grow less than half a meter high, ‘Tiny Tim’ tomato plants still have a high yield. Below, you will learn the origin of this variety and how to cultivate it.
‘Tiny Tim’ tomato: profile
|Fruit||Cocktail tomato; deep red|
|Flavour||Mild, sweet, and slightly acidic|
|Growth||Determinate, up to 50cm in height|
|Location||Container, pot, hanging basket, balcony|
Origin and history of the ‘Tiny Tim’ tomato
The ‘Tiny Tim’ tomato originates from the USA, where it was first cultivated at the University of New Hampshire by crossing the currant tomato ‘Red Currant’ with the ‘Window Box’ tomato variety. It came to the market as early as 1945 and has been a popular variety ever since.
Tomato taste and other characteristics
‘Tiny Tim’ reaches a height of just 40 to 50 cm, while its fruits are around 3 cm in size, and weigh up to 20 grams. ‘Tiny Tim’ tomatoes begin to ripen around the end of July with their deep red colour. Speaking of size, ‘Tiny Tim’ tomato plants produce a large amount of fruit. Because this variety is determinate, all the plant’s tomatoes will ripen in a period of roughly two weeks. Afterwards, the ‘Tiny Tim’ tomato plant will produce little to no fruit for the rest of the season. ‘Tiny Tim’ tomatoes are mild and sweet with a slight acidic twist and are particularly juicy. This small bush tomato is an heirloom variety, so you can always save the tomato seeds to sow again next season.
Growing and caring for ‘Tiny Tim’ tomato plants
The ‘Tiny Tim’ is an ideal potted or balcony tomato as its dwarf shape takes up little space. The variety itself is low-maintenance and hardy and can tolerate a bit of rain without its fruits bursting. A sunny spot, however, with shelter from the wind is ideal. From mid-May, after the threat of frost has passed, you can plant young ‘Tiny Tim’ tomato plants out into pots and balcony boxes. In cooler climates, such as in the UK, it is recommended to “harden off” tomato plants before fully moving them outside. To harden off tomato plants, simply acclimatise them gradually for 7 to 14 days in a cold frame or sheltered spot outside.
To plant ‘Tiny Tim’ tomato plants, fill pots and planters at least 25 cm in diameter with a pre-fertilised potting soil, such as our Plantura Organic Tomato & Vegetable Compost. The nutrients contained in this compost supply your tomato plants with all the necessary nutrients after planting. In addition, our compost mixes do not contain peat, which is harmful to the environment.
Once planted, ‘Tiny Tim’ tomatoes are relatively easy to maintain. Because the plant is a determinate growing variety, as mentioned above, it will only produce fruit for two weeks. Tomato pruning with ‘Tiny Tim’ plants is not necessary, as this will in fact reduce its abundant yield.
During the summer, water ‘Tiny Tim’ tomato plants, especially those in small pots, regularly. Placing a mulch layer of lawn clippings around the plant can significantly reduce evaporation and keep soil from drying out as quickly. Starting in June as fruits begin to form, ‘Tiny Tim’ tomatoes need regular fertilising. For plants in pots or on the balcony, we recommend liquid fertilisers, such as our Plantura Liquid Tomato Food. Apply a liquid fertiliser roughly once a week when watering, to provide all the essential nutrients and help ensure healthy and abundant tomato plants.
Harvesting and using ‘Tiny Tim’ tomatoes
Around the end of July, the first fruits of the ‘Tiny Tim’ tomatoes will be ripe and ready to harvest. When ripe, ‘Tiny Tim’ tomatoes are a deep red colour and slightly soft to the touch. ‘Tiny Tim’ tomatoes make a delicious snack tomato, but also are just as great in salads and sauces.
Tip: Unlike indeterminate tomatoes that produce throughout the season, ‘Tiny Tim’ will not form any more shoots. Once all your ‘Tiny Tim’ tomato fruits have been harvested, you can discard the plant in your compost as no new flowers or fruits will form.
Bush tomato varieties like ‘Tiny Tim’, are easy to cultivate and perfect for small spaces. Another great example is the ‘Silvery Fir’ tomato plant variety, which also has beautifully intricate foliage.