Is it possible to grow tomatoes as a pot plant? In the limited space I have I can afford pot of maximum depth = 12 cm and diameter = 12 cm. what size pot will be ideal to start with?

In India what would be the best time to plant them and how can I take care of it at later stages?

Sun is not that harsh is winters here - temperature ranges 5-35 degree centigrade, average day temperature would about 24 degree centigrade.

Plant will be placed outdoors and will get all sunlight all through the day.

  • 2
    I'm suspicious you're not going to have much luck with a pot that small. How much of the day will the tomatoes be in the sun?
    – GardenerJ
    Commented Dec 16, 2015 at 12:27
  • 1
    The best size pot for tomatoes is a 5 gallon pot.
    – Escoce
    Commented Dec 16, 2015 at 13:58

4 Answers 4


I know you've said you only have space for a 12" pot, but if you can find any way to accommodate a larger one, you've got a better chance of success. 30 centimeters would be closer to the size recommended for container-grown tomatoes. I've personally had some success with a 20 centimeter pot. Anything you can do to get closer to that 30 centimeter mark is going to give you a better chance of success.

When you buy your tomato plants or seeds, look for a dwarf variety. If you want the plant to look compact (more like a decorative plant), you should look for a dwarf determinate variety. If you don't mind a sprawling, viney plant that needs to be trellised, you can consider a dwarf indeterminate variety. This might work, for example, if this outdoor space is a balcony, and you could afix the tomato plant to the balcony railing as it grows.

Here in the US, many of the common dwarf determinate plants have names with the word 'patio' or 'balcony' right in them (Patio Dwarf, Patio Princess, Balcony, etc.). Stupice is another that is frequently recommended for pots. Sweet Baby Girl is a dwarf indeterminate cherry tomato that is also easy to find here. I'm not sure which, if any, of these are available where you live, but you should be able to find that information locally.


That's a small pot, and definitely not ideal. I recommend as much larger of a container as you can manage, even if you have to sacrifice drainage to make room. However, you can grow some kinds of tomatoes in small pots (but the harvest may be modest). I've grown Galapagos Island (Solanum cheesmaniae) tomatoes in a foam cup, which produced four fruits indoors before I transplanted them. I've also had fruits on some tomatoes descended from the hybrid variety called Grape. However, there are probably much better-adapted varieties for your purposes.

You'll need to make sure you water it a lot, though, if it's outside (especially if it's hot and dry where you live). It might be worth making a miniature self-watering container. You might try varieties like Micro Tom or Tumbling Tom. I'm not sure if they're heat or drought tolerant, though.

Another thing about small containers is that the plants may need to be fertilized more often.

I'm not sure about India's climate and seasons, personally, but hopefully someone else will answer that.


One of my best tomato seasons was when I was living in an apartment with a balcony that got sun about 4 hours a day. I grew 6 plants: 3 in each of two 18" pots. They were some variety of "patio tomatoes". That was in 1989. I didn't match the dozen dozen tomatoes I got that year until last year in my 4'X4' planting bed. However, this year a had one cucumber plant that yielded 100 cucumbers.


As an anecdotical answer, here's what happened to a slightly smaller undrained pot Φ~=80mm, h~=90mm. I had intended to transfer it to a larger proper pot but that never happened. The red thing is a 0.5 liter beer can for scale. The height of the plant is H~=500mm and the diameter of the fruit is d~=9mm. It is turning yellow now so I expect it to at very best double in diameter before ripening.

enter image description here

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