Tips from Olle Garden Bed: Why Is Your Tomato Skin Tough

Imagine that you see the most beautiful tomatoes in the garden. They are red, mature and look perfect. But when you pick them up, you realize that their skin is tough and leathery. The following content also has some reference value for raised garden beds.

Is there anything more frustrating than planting tomatoes, watching them grow tall and strong, and then making their skin hard so that you can't eat them? You are not alone, because many gardeners also have to deal with tomatoes with tough skin.

raised garden beds

But what is the reason for this annoying problem? More importantly, what can you do?

Extreme temperature

One of the most common causes of tomato skin hardness is overheating. If you expose tomatoes to extreme temperatures, their skin will harden to protect themselves. This is completely normal, no need to worry.

However, if you want to avoid tomatoes with hard skin, you can do something. First, make sure you water the plants regularly. It will help them keep cool and hydrated in hot summer. Finally, coverage won't do any harm! Tomatoes are warm weather crops that can benefit from synthetic mulch.


If you are a tomato lover, there is nothing better than ripening juicy fruit directly from the vine. However, if your tomatoes are sunburnt, they may not be as delicious as you want. Sunburn can harden the skin of tomatoes and spoil the taste of other perfect fruits.

Sunburn is a condition that affects tomatoes when they are exposed to too much direct sunlight. High temperature will cause skin decomposition, resulting in loss of moisture and flavor.

There are several simple ways to prevent tomatoes from sunburn:

Tomatoes are grown in partially shaded areas for part of the day.

Use tomato cages or trellises to support plants and keep fruit away from the ground.

When the temperature is particularly high, cover the plant with a light fabric (such as a piece of cloth).

Covering soil with straw mulch can reduce soil dehydration.

Water regularly to prevent plants from drying out.

raised garden bed

Different varieties

Some tomato types have tough skin because they are bred this way. Tough skin helps to can and preserve tomatoes. In addition, some varieties, such as Rome and plums, have thick skins to prevent cracking.

Inadequate watering

Inadequate watering can also lead to thick tomato skin. This happens when the plant does not get enough water, so it tries to save as much as it can. The result is that tomatoes have a tough outer layer. Although it doesn't seem like a big deal, it will make the fruit taste worse. So, if you grow tomatoes for you to eat, give them enough water!

How to properly care for your tomato plants

Plant them in the right place

Tomatoes like plenty of sunshine, so they must be planted in a place where there is at least eight hours of direct sunlight every day. They also like loose and well drained soil, so if your soil is heavy or like clay, modify it with some compost or other organic matter before planting.

Water them regularly (but not too much)

You need to water tomatoes regularly, especially when they are firm. However, you do not want to overuse it, because it will lead to problems such as root rot. Water the plants about once a week, and more frequently if they are in the pot or in very hot and dry weather.

Feed them a balanced diet

Tomatoes are heavy eaters, so if you plant them in containers, they will like the fertilizer dosage once every two weeks. If your tomatoes are in the garden, fertilize them every four weeks or so during the growing season.

Support them appropriately

As tomatoes grow and bear fruit, they may become top heavy and start to fall. To prevent this, you need to provide them with some type of support. You can do this by lofting, scaffolding, or planting them in cages.

raised garden beds

Trim them as needed

In order to maintain the health and productivity of tomato plants, it is better to conduct some selective pruning. Remove any dead or diseased leaves or branches, and trim any sucker formed on the stem below the fruit.

Have you ever encountered the problem that the tomato skin is hard and inedible? You are not alone. Many gardeners also have to deal with this problem. There are many reasons that can cause the tomato skin to harden, such as extreme temperature, too much direct sunlight or insufficient watering

However, you can take some measures to prevent it! Maintaining plant moisture, covering the soil with straw, and covering them when the temperature is too high can greatly improve your tomato crop!

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published