Wednesday, May 14, 2014

What to know aboutTomatoes

Did you ever wonder why, your tomatoes were not producing any more fruit?

You may have "determinate" tomatoes"
Or too much nitrogen. If you have amazing green growth, but no flowers after 65 or 70 days.

 What's the difference between "indeterminate" and "determinate" tomatoes?
Determinate tomatoes, are "bush" like tomatoes, that grow to a compact height (maybe 3 - 4 feet tall). determinate tomatoes bear their crop all at once, (usually over period of 1- 2 weeks) they are best for container growing. You should never prune a 'determinate' type tomato. As you will loose some of your crop.

Indeterminate tomatoes, are more vine like. They can grow 6-12 feet. They require staking or cage/trellis  support. After about  65 days in the ground,they produce fruit until killed by frost. So this is the one to choose if you want lots of tomatoes, from one plant. This plant you can remove suckers, and should remove most of the suckers at the bottom 10"to allow air flow. This may also prevent disease and insect damage. Pruning sometimes, helps to increase tomato size.

Regular Leaf, is the most typical leaf type with leaf edges that are serrated. There are more of these than potato leaf varieties available.
Potato Leaf, is thicker. Can produce more fruits and can be more tolerant of the common foliage diseases. But this is not a fact. Weather and environment, determine what can happen to any plant.

Heirloom verses Hybrid
Heirloom's are original plants. that you can collect seed from and they produce the same fruit or veggie. Unless the cross pollinate, with another plant.

Hybrids. Are the result of cross breading 2 or more plants to create another one. Some will produce viable seed. But may not create the same hybrid plant again. It could revert to the parent plants.  So seed saving on them is not a good choice if you want that same plant again.  

How temperature affects flowering:
Pollen does not develop if night temperatures are below 55°F.
Blossoms drop if daytime temperatures rise above 95°F before 10 a.m.
 Tomatoes grown in cool climates will have softer fruit with bland flavors.

Nitrogen is the nutrient most responsible for growing lush, vibrant leaves and stems. Indeterminate vines need it most when they are young. If after 65 day in the ground no bloom happens, too much nitrogen will keep the plants content and may not produce fruit. So stop using nitrogen.
Epsom salt
Spray them directly with a diluted mixture of Epsom salt and water; about 1 teaspoon to 1 quart of water. This will increase there Magnesium level. Epsoms salts help too if you are getting too much water, and the leaves are going yellow.
Egg shells: Wash them, then crush. Some people dry them out. Work the shell pieces into the soil near tomatoes and peppers. The calcium helps fend off blossom end rot. Eggshells are 93% calcium carbonate, the same ingredient as lime.
Coffee grounds mixed into the soil help with nitrogen and acidity.
Blood meal fertilizer can turn yellow leaves green again. This will also make your soil more acidic, because it  lowers the pH in the soil. It will last for 6 to 8 weeks.
 This is effective in repelling deer, rabbits and other pests away from garden  However, it also attracts dogs and raccoons. maybe even opossum.  You must use the correct amount, or it may damage your plants. Read the package for directions.

This post will be continued. When this statement is removed it will be finished.  I am recording all I need to rember on this blog. So I can refer back to is as needed.

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