10 Tomatoes to Grow in Your Container Garden

Bright orange tomatoes growing on a trellis in a container garden

 Vaivirga / Getty Images

It’s hard to beat the taste of a ripe tomato (Lycopersicon esculentum) plucked straight from the vine, and there’s no more convenient way to harvest them than from a container garden on your patio or deck. A well-supported heirloom slicer like Black Krim or a small, clustered cherry variety are both excellent options for growing in a container.

Tomatoes have large root systems, so it is important to plant them deeply into the soil. A large container, 12 to 18 inches deep, will prevent the soil from drying out too quickly during the heat of summer as well.

Here are 10 tomato varieties to grow in your container garden.

Warning

Some of the plants on this list are toxic to pets. For more information about the safety of specific plants, consult the ASPCA's searchable database.

1
of 10

Sungold

A cluster of bright orange cherry tomatoes hang from a green vine

Dwight Sipler / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

These bright orange cherry tomatoes have an intense and irresistible sweetness to them and can be easily transplanted and grown in a container with the aid of a trellis for support. Sungolds tend to split if left on the vine too long, so be sure to harvest them when ripe.

Plant Care Tips

  • USDA Growing Zones: 3 to 11.
  • Sun Exposure: Full sun.
  • Soil Needs: Moderately rich.
2
of 10

Black Krim

A large, dark-pink bulbous tomato with three distinct globular sections sits on a garden table

Brian Boucheron / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

Black Krim, a Russian heirloom variety, is a high-yielding tomato that does well when transplanted into a large container with trellis supports. It produces very large and attractive purplish-red fruits that turn violet-brown at the stem end as they ripen. Once harvested, store in a dark, room-temperature environment for up to a week.

Plant Care Tips

  • USDA Growing Zones: 3 to 9.
  • Sun Exposure: Full sun.
  • Soil Needs: Moderately rich.
3
of 10

Japanese Black Trifele

A lonesome, unripened green tomato the size of a marble grows on a vine

cristina.sanvito / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

The Japanese Black Trifele is an organic heirloom tomato that will grow well when transplanted deeply into the soil of your container garden. Its fruits are slightly pear-shaped and turn a gorgeous mahogany color at the shoulders when ripe. This heirloom tomato has a sweet and complex flavor with a hint of smokiness — just delicious.

Plant Care Tips

  • USDA Growing Zones: 3 to 11.
  • Sun Exposure: Full sun.
  • Soil Needs: Moderately rich.
4
of 10

Silvery Fir Tree

A ripe, red slicer tomato hangs from a vine behind two, unripened green tomatoes

graibeard / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

Silvery Fir Tree tomatoes are quite compact, so take exceptionally well to container gardens. Their delicate, silvery gray-green foliage contrasts beautifully with the round red fruits, making for a fine ornamental plant. Silvery Fir Trees are a determinate variety, so they’ll be harvestable over a period of a couple of weeks about 58 days after planting.

Plant Care Tips

  • USDA Growing Zones: 3 to 9.
  • Sun Exposure: Full sun.
  • Soil Needs: Moderately rich.
5
of 10

Brandywine

A large, orangish red slicer tomato hangs from the vine

F.D. Richards / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

While Brandywine tomato plants are rather large, a few strong stakes and regular pruning will allow them to grow successfully in a container. These large, heirloom tomatoes have a distinctive sweet and spicy flavor to them and grow best in rich and moist soils in full sunlight.

Plant Care Tips

  • USDA Growing Zones: 3 to 9.
  • Sun Exposure: Full sun.
  • Soil Needs: Moderately rich.
6
of 10

Cherokee Purple

Green, unripened slicers hang on the vine amidst a jungle of tomato leaves

Baron Chandler / Flickr / CC BY-ND 2.0

The darkly colored Cherokee Purple tomato is a container-friendly heirloom variety that boasts a bold flavor and incredible texture that must be tasted be believed. Let these slicers ripen on the vine before harvesting them off the trellis. For best results, your Cherokee Purple tomatoes with full sun and keep the soil consistently moist.

Plant Care Tips

  • USDA Growing Zones: 3 to 9.
  • Sun Exposure: Full sun.
  • Soil Needs: Moderately rich.
7
of 10

Tumbler

The leaves and vines of a cherry tomato plant falls over the edge of a hanging woven basket

Andrew Bowden / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0

Harvestable within 50 days, these sweet, bright red cherry tomatoes can be grown exceptionally well in a pot on the patio or from a hanging basket after being transplanted from indoors. Be sure to provide Tumbler tomatoes with plenty of sunlight and keep the soil moist, but not overly saturated.

Plant Care Tips

  • USDA Growing Zones: 3 to 9.
  • Sun Exposure: Full sun.
  • Soil Needs: Moderately rich.
8
of 10

Roma

Two young Roma seedlings poke out of the soil of a clay pot

Stacy Spensley / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

A classic variety for making sauces and pastes, Roma tomatoes do wonderfully when trellised in a container garden due to their compact, three inch frame. Roma tomatoes like plenty of room for their roots to grow, so transplant them into large containers and bury two-thirds of the stems beneath the soil.

Plant Care Tips

  • USDA Growing Zones: 3 to 11.
  • Sun Exposure: Full sun.
  • Soil Needs: Moderately rich.
9
of 10

Sweet Million

A tangle of green leaves and vines surround a cluster of cherry tomatoes in various stages or ripeness

Tuchodi / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

A high-yielding hybrid, the Sweet Million tomato forms in tight clusters that make it perfect for container growing. Harvest your crop as they become ripe and you’ll have fresh, great-tasting tomatoes for summer salads, omelets, and snacking. Plant your Sweet Millions with the support of a cage or trellis.

Plant Care Tips

  • USDA Growing Zones: 2 to 12.
  • Sun Exposure: Full sun.
  • Soil Needs: Moderately rich.
10
of 10

Early Girl

Three tomatoes, one bright orange, one pale orange, and one light green, hang from a trellised vine

Stacy Spensley / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

As the name suggests, Early Girl tomatoes are some of the first of the season to reach maturity and, because of their large, globular size, you will want to plant them in a large container for optimal results. These classic red slicer tomatoes are the perfect addition to burgers at the summer barbecue or chopped up and thrown into a salad.

Plant Care Tips

  • USDA Growing Zones: 3 to 9.
  • Sun Exposure: Full sun.
  • Soil Needs: Moderately rich.