Tomatoes on the terrace
Tomatoes belong to the Solanaceae family. It seems to be ascertained that the origin of the common name tomato is due to the fact that the first fruits known in Europe towards the second half of the sixteenth century, were of yellow color, therefore "golden apples". However, they are believed to be of American origin. In the cultivated form instead, the tomato would originate from Peru. Like the potato, the tomato initially aroused an interest as an exotic plant; the real crops as an edible plant of high diffusion began only in the early nineteenth century, in the hot areas of Sicily and Neapolitan. From a botanical point of view, tomatoes, very tasty vegetables, are called fleshy "berries" and contain over 90% of water, but they are a food with a high biological value due to their richness in minerals, carbohydrates, ascorbic acid, vitamins and antioxidants. The tomato fruit has different shapes, so the different varieties have a second name (cherry, and cluster) depending on the shape of the vegetable. The tomato is also forced into special greenhouses, with special techniques and a choice of suitable varieties, and appears on the markets as a first fruits already in February. The cultivation is very extensive in Italy both for the production of preserves and for consuming it fresh. This vegetable has the enormous advantage of being able to be grown both in the open ground and in pots or boxes on terraces and large balconies, does not require particular maintenance and has a rather rapid flowering time. Tomato plants in Italy are grown on an industrial scale as annual plants, in fresh soils with an acid PH that ranges between 5.5 and 7.5 in regions where the temperature is rather low; while where the temperature is warmer the PH remains rather stable around 6.0.
How to grow them on the terrace
To obtain the flowering of the tomatoes on the terrace, the seeds are sown in the period from November to February. As soon as the first leaflets are born, slats are planted which act as tutors to the plants to encourage climbing around them. The simple and natural soil must be weeded immediately after planting the seeds and the watering must be constant and frequent. The harvest is carried out gradually, as the fruits ripen in successive stages. Cultivating these vegetables on the terrace allows you to obtain natural and tasty products compared to those grown in greenhouses as, the sun's rays are the lifeblood especially in areas of southern Italy. In order to obtain a good production, it is advisable to limit the flowering in the intermediate growth period, by removing some flowers and leaves near a ripening fruit with a sort of light topping.