What Temp Is Safe For Tomatoes?
No matter where I look online to find an answer on the growing temperatures for tomatoes, I invariably run across what, to me, is a conflict in what the writer of the article is advising. This article presents the same question for me. Let me explain. "Most tomatoes are warm season plants and should only be planted after the danger of frost has passed." The question is, is that statement correct? I read it to mean that if I'm sure that the temperature will no longer drop below 33 degrees, it should be okay to plant. However, the article also states "There are specific tomato varietals bred for cold hardiness which will tolerate conditions at or below 55 degrees F. (13 C.)." Thus, my confusion. As a first time experiment, I've successfully began growing tomatoes from seeds and now have the 'seedlings' ready to plant. I'm in area 6b. It is now approaching the last frost date (May 1) and The Weather Channel's 10-day forecast has the approximate day temperatures generally in the mid 60s and the lowest night temperature at 39 degrees. I'll ask Laurence Olivier's famous question: "Is it safe?"
I would recommend waiting a bit longer before you plant those tomatoes outside. You should plant tomatoes outside when the overnight lows are consistently above 50F.
For more information, please read the following article: