Tomatoes

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AlaninCarlisle

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Tomatoes
« on: September 23, 2014, 21:03 »
I still have loads of tomatoes ripening in the polytunnel and greenhouse. As the plants themselves are looking increasingly mildewed and ragged, I'm trying to decide whether or not to strip the fruit off and ripen it in the house or to leave it in-situ.

What do others do at this time of the year?

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Elm street

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Re: Tomatoes
« Reply #1 on: September 23, 2014, 21:09 »
We currently grow our toms outside as we do not have a greenhouse as yet!
We strip the leaves other than the top few so that more light gets to them and leave the tomatoes to ripen on the plant, if that's ant help?

Mel

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mumofstig

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Re: Tomatoes
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2014, 21:14 »
I leave them on as long as possible, as well. Removing any mildewed or dying leaves.

When it looks cold enough for a heavy frost, that's when I pick the last of them.

Because of blight, I only have 3 plants left growing this year, Cherrola, Black Cherry and Nectar Rose - all of which must have some resistance to still be fruiting  :)
Lesley x
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Headgardener22

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Re: Tomatoes
« Reply #3 on: September 23, 2014, 21:28 »
We leave them taking off the leaves and mouldy bits. Watering the plants a very small amount. If you get a frost inside the polytunnel, the plants will suffer but I've picked ripe fruit off the plants in an unheated polutunnel in the middle of November. They still taste better ripened on the plant than in a drawer.

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Growster...

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Re: Tomatoes
« Reply #4 on: September 24, 2014, 07:02 »
We still have about twenty plants producing, but the toms are getting splits, and although the rough bits can be cut away, we're going to harvest the lost, use what we can, and collect the green ones for ripening in a closed drawer.

They take quite some time to redden that way, and will prolong the season by a couple of weeks, and there are at least fifteen pounds to save, so it's worth the trouble!

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bravemurphy

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Re: Tomatoes
« Reply #5 on: September 24, 2014, 07:53 »
I striped all the leaves off mine and stopped watering them and they stopped splitting and are fine.

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Growster...

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Re: Tomatoes
« Reply #6 on: September 24, 2014, 10:13 »
I striped all the leaves off mine and stopped watering them and they stopped splitting and are fine.

Interesting point about stripping the leaves, Brave!

These are all outside down at The Patch, but as we grew over seventy plants in total, the maintenance was becoming more than a chore, but we have a huge glut at the moment, so all in all, it's not so bad!

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JayG

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Re: Tomatoes
« Reply #7 on: September 24, 2014, 10:43 »
I transplanted a spare Inca Plum and Sungold plant in the garden not expecting much, nor looking after them much either - they have both produced a good crop (still are), and unlike all previous attempts at growing Sungold in the GH none of them have split. There must be an explanation but I don't know what it is!

The Red Alert have just about finished in the open cold frame - about 10lbs per plant, nearly all ripened off the plant as perfect flavour is not essential - despite not being an ideal variety for sauce making they have been my mainstay this year given my not-mixing-the-growmore-into-the-compost disaster in the GH (the plants have finally grown through it, and are currently rampant, but unfortunately are about 3 months behind where they should be!)
Still had a few Sweet Million and (split) Sungold from them, although it's now a certainty I'm going to have to wait 'till next year to find out what Marmande look and taste like.  :(

In general, I agree that they are better left to ripen on the plants, but be ready to bring them indoors if blight, botrytis or frost threatens - as long as they have got beyond the small, hard, dark green stage they should ripen well in a warm place.
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Headgardener22

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Re: Tomatoes
« Reply #8 on: September 24, 2014, 15:54 »
I think that tomatoes split when they get too much water after the skins have "set". This is before they change colour but when they will ripen if left in a drawer.

I always substantially reduce the amount of water that I give to plants at this time (less than a cupful per growbag and no feed) and strip off most (sometimes all) of the leaves. I find this significantly reduces splitting and improves flavour. Some of the thin skinned varieties (like Black Cherry) still split but most varieties seem to be OK.

Obviously you have less control over plants that are outside or in the greenhouse borders. I stop watering the ones in the greenhouse borders altogether and hope that the outside varieties have tougher skins.

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simonwatson

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Re: Tomatoes
« Reply #9 on: September 24, 2014, 16:11 »
I left mine on until the plants looked pretty much dead. The fruit was still good.



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