Monday, July 12, 2010

Tomatoes! They live!!!

I have been keeping a close eye on the tomato plants, and while the crunchy leaves haven't regained their liveliness, they haven't seem to have gotten worse. The stems themselves are healthy and green, and this gives me hope!

But this post isn't about the crunchy leaves, this post is about tomatoes! They've started to ripen! Woohoo!

I've harvested 30 tomatoes so far with at least another 30 ready in the next week. I took a little advice from a random forum post on You Grow Girl, and I have been pulling the tomatoes from the vine JUST before they fully ripen.This helps keep the pests from eating the fruit. I've been placing them in a paper bag to ripen the rest of the way, and it only takes 3 or 4 days.

Here's the harvest so far, overseen by the guard case one of them tries to make a break for it. I pull them generally when they're the color of the middle pile. Fully orange and showing a decent amount of red blush.  The small pile on the far right were the few tomatoes that fell to the ground a little too early, but they're still salvageable. They'll just need a few extra days in the bag. On the left, they're more or less ready for sauce making. :)

I'm starting to learn a few things about buying transplants. The two tomato plants were bought at the same time. They were the same size and the same variety. The only difference between the two was that the one on the right already had some blossoms on it when I bought it.  It started to grow fruit a week or two after planting it.

I think when the plants start flowering, or growing fruit, they stop concentrating on developing stems and leaves, and focus on creating fruit. Seems plants can only focus on one or the other.  I could be wrong, this is only observational, but it also happened with my two strawberry plants. The one that didn't have any blossoms on it when I bought it grew large. I got very early fruit off of the other, but it was a puny little thing and never got any larger.

I'll keep this in mind going forward...but I also wonder, if a tomato transplant has blossoms when I buy it, can I prune them away to keep the plant growing a while longer?


Layne Designs said...

HI! what a beautiful tomato harvest! I am so happy for you. I have only just started growing some flowers, and I hope to someday grow fruit as well! Thanks for sharing. Love the photos :)

Monty Full said...

I find veggies to be muuuuch easier than flowers. I don't know what it is about flowers, but the only ones I can get to grow are sunflowers!