For many years, we watched as gardeners planted tomatoes inside coffee cans, pots, containers and milk cartons with the bottoms cut out. Although this helped with cutworms, there were few other benefits vs growing tomatoes in pots or in tomato planters. Our goal in creating Tomato Crater was to develop a two-piece plant protector with additional plant BENEFITS that was simple and easy to use by gardeners of all ages and abilities. We reached that goal!
Tomatoes are very fragile, so we wanted to be able to place it around the plant rather than to plant through a hole in the middle. The Tomato Crater design has two identical halves, which with a slight twist, locks them together around the plant forming a water reservoir. It also needed to be mold injected and durable to last for many years of gardening.
The six slots in the bottom of the Tomato Crater are designed to accept a wire support cage and supply water to the outer edge of the roots to help with growth and make it easy to use.
We developed several prototypes and tested them in our gardens. The results and plant benefits were very impressive! We applied for a patent on the unique 2-piece locking design and it was granted.
At first, we manufactured black Tomato Craters, which worked very well, but then as the USDA Universities began to study the benefits of RED MULCH and the increased plant yields, we started to manufacture red Tomato Craters. The USDA University studies showed dramatic increased plant yields by helping control insects called NEMATODES. Although we designed our plant protector primarily for tomatoes, we find that it will greatly enhance and benefit the growth of any plant or shrub you can place it around. It can also be removed at any stage of growth without damaging the plant or shrub.
Many gardeners will find that while using the Tomato Crater, their plants’ growth will be ahead of unprotected plants by approximately two weeks! Tomato Crater is manufactured in Minnesota and our garden season is classified as Zone 3. To prevent frost, most gardeners in our zone normally don’t set their plants outdoors until the last week of May or the first week of June. By using a Tomato Crater plant protector, we can help gain lost plant growth. To see the difference, use a plant protector on one plant and one without. Water and treat them the same and see the difference over a two week or one month period. You’ll definitely appreciate how effective Tomato Crater is and how easy it is to use!