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My tomato plant is not doing anything

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My tomato plant is not doing anything

Post  sjfrunner on 9/29/2010, 5:42 pm

Hi y'all,

I'm in the Tampa area of FL. I planted a Roma tomato plant I bought in July. The plant seems to grow okay, but I don't see any tomatoes about to come up. How long does it take? Am I doing something wrong?

Susie
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Re: My tomato plant is not doing anything

Post  elliephant on 9/29/2010, 5:43 pm

Have you seen any flowers on it?

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flowers on tomato plant

Post  sjfrunner on 9/29/2010, 5:48 pm

There are no flowers on the plant. It is approx. 3 ft. tall.

Susie
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Re: My tomato plant is not doing anything

Post  Garden Angel on 9/29/2010, 6:18 pm

Have you fertilized it at all ? tomatoes are heavy feeders, but don't put alot of nitrogen based on I learned that the hard way, it depletes the calcium and leads to blossom end rot. Type in tomato in the search box up above and see what threads have been discussed before. I'm sure there are others who can help better than I can.
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have not fertilized tomatoes

Post  sjfrunner on 9/29/2010, 6:25 pm

I guess I made the assumption that because the plant was in an SFG that there was no need for fertilizer. I will give that a try.
Thank you,
Susie
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Re: My tomato plant is not doing anything

Post  acara on 9/29/2010, 7:03 pm

If your in Tampa, your prime suspect for he plant not "doing anything yet" is the heat.

If it helps any, your better off not having, or missing the flowers .....they just would have dropped off anyways.

Most varieties, unless they are a heat tolerant hybrid won't set fruit at 90+ temps & will simply drop any flowers that they happen to produce.

You should see a notable difference once we are in the 78-degree (F) median range & the highs dont get above the low 80's.

Your plants probably just saving up energy to amaze you in the next 30-45 days Very Happy

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Re: My tomato plant is not doing anything

Post  elliephant on 9/29/2010, 7:44 pm

Yeah, I was going to say the heat, too. I was wondering if her blossoms were dropping off. It does seems strange to me if there aren't any flowering branches, however. I thought I remembered my spring tomatoes having blossoms, but just dropping them when it got too hot back in June. But that was a long time ago, lol. I can say that my tomato plants have flowers now and we are bouncing between the mid-80s and the low 90s. I'm watching closely, hoping they'll actually produce tomatoes...it's been so long since I pulled mine out because of the heat and the bugs back in June!

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Re: My tomato plant is not doing anything

Post  LaFee on 9/30/2010, 12:43 am

My mom's (south of Tampa) gave up the ghost completely -- they didn't just stop growing, they curled up and died....so she's just replanted now that there's a chance of cooler weather.

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tomatoes in FL

Post  sjfrunner on 9/30/2010, 10:53 am

Unfortunately I've heard several folks who tried to grow tomatoes here and it did not work. One of these folks is an avid gardener too. I'd hate to think I have to give that up, I love fresh tomatoes.

Susie
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Re: My tomato plant is not doing anything

Post  boffer on 9/30/2010, 11:09 am

thinking Too much heat? That's a foreign concept for some of us!

What do the commercial greenhouses do? Are they air conditioned, or do they shut down during the summer heat?

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Re: My tomato plant is not doing anything

Post  quiltbea on 9/30/2010, 11:11 am

You'll just have to plant your seedlings when the excessive heat has passed.
Good luck.
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Re: My tomato plant is not doing anything

Post  acara on 9/30/2010, 12:13 pm

boffer wrote: thinking Too much heat? That's a foreign concept for some of us!

What do the commercial greenhouses do? Are they air conditioned, or do they shut down during the summer heat?


In Central Florida, you will see totally different varieties if you go to a commercial field, a greenhouse, or home-growers ... especialy for summer crops.

Greenhouses will have Trust, Dombitos, Jumbos, Carusos ..
Commercial Fields will have Florida-47's, Florida-91's, HS 508's
Home-Growers will have HS-508's, Solar-Fire's, Solar-Set, Braggers & possibly some Better-boys or Giant Belgiums (I've never been able to get those last two to produce fruit in Summer though ...FWIW).

I've heard the Solar Sets will actually set/maintain blooms in 92-degree heat ..... but hats one of those things I'd have to see to believe.

The types are much more similar between the commercial/home growers in Spring/Fall ... thats when everyone puts out the Celebritys, Beefstakes & Cherokees (but just about any type will grow down here in the Spring/Fall)


If the Romas dont start to produce, you might want to look at their smaller cousins,the "juliets" (basically baby-romas). I see those quite a bit down here.
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bought fish emulsion

Post  sjfrunner on 9/30/2010, 4:28 pm

Just got some fish emulsion and put some on my tomato plant. Hopefully that will help. Now, I can't get the stink off my hands and this was supposed to be odorless Smile

Susie
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Re: My tomato plant is not doing anything

Post  acara on 9/30/2010, 5:47 pm

sjfrunner wrote:Just got some fish emulsion and put some on my tomato plant. Hopefully that will help. Now, I can't get the stink off my hands and this was supposed to be odorless Smile

Susie

False advertising at it's finest ....

BTW ..wash yr clothes too if you got any on you .... only thing that smells worse than it does now, is how it will smell tomorrow.

Also, read the label (if you haven't already)..... if you got the local brand thats on the shelves down here, you need to keep it inside, or in an area where it doesn't "go bad" (think the bottle says store in temp below 90 .... which excludes most Florida garages & toolsheds).


I learned all of this a week ago ...the hard way .... so I figured I'd share & hopefully save you some pain (or stink)
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fish emulsion

Post  sjfrunner on 9/30/2010, 5:55 pm

I stored it in my utility room and plan to keep it there. I think I'm going to jump in the washing machine with my clothes, pheww!
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Oh yes, you can!

Post  LaFee on 9/30/2010, 5:56 pm

All you folks living in West-Central Florida -- have a look down around Ruskin -- it's the home of some of the biggest commercial production of tomatoes in the eastern US -- in the winter, ALL the tomatoes sold in the Eastern US come from about 60 miles south of Wesley Chapel...Odessa...New Port Richey....

Any varietal you see that has "Boy" in its name was probably developed by Ruskin Tomato Corp....Big Boy, Better Boy, etc.

There's also a packing house that ships out tons (literally) of big, fat Romas.

So yes, you most assuredly CAN grow tomatoes in Florida. You have to have the right variety...and you need to NOT grow them over the summer. The big harvest is in May -- make sure you take a trip to the Ruskin Tomato and Heritage Festival -- all the maters you can eat, as well as seeds, young plants...you name it. There aren't as many as there used to be, but the fields are still enormous and go on and on for miles...and there's not a square inch of shade cloth anywhere.

Take a drive down there in the spring -- there's almost always a U-pick open somewhere, where you can pick them yourself...and you could also stop to see John at Hydro Harvest Farms -- he has a small but mighty hydroponic operation, and sells some awesome farm-fresh produce from his very interesting growing setup. (He carries vermiculite, too...I talked to him in August, and he said he'd be happy to help anybody in Florida source vermiculite.)

Even I, the blackest thumb in the South, could grow tomatoes....and that was before I had any idea what a Square Foot Garden was or who Mel might be.

Last, contact Tomato Growers Supply Company, at P.O. Box 60015, Ft. Myers 33906 -- www.tomatogrowers.com -- you can bet a company with a name like that knows how to help you grow maters in Florida.

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Re: My tomato plant is not doing anything

Post  Kevinbrendon on 11/24/2011, 10:47 am

You can try and prune your plants. Un-pruned plants
will develop many stems and if not supported, they will sprawl across the
ground and take up a lot of space.


Tomatoes that are pruned down to just a few stems will be
more compact in size, can be staked, and will produce larger fruit.


Around the time when your tomato plants start to produce
flowers, they will also start producing side branches. Side branches are stems
that emerge from the nodes between leaves and the main stem. They are commonly
known as "suckers," and some say that they do not produce fruit.
However, this is not true at all. Side branches will produce flowers and fruit
just like the original stem. The result of side branches is a bushy tomato
plant with many stems, and probably many fruit as well.



Temperature
- Tomatoes do best within a range of 55-85 degrees F. Tomato plants can be
severely damaged or killed by prolonged cold or even a brief exposure to frost.
Tomatoes can handle high temperatures, but are damaged by prolonged
temperatures over 93 degrees F.



Nutrients - Tomatoes need
properly-designed nutrients that are easily absorbed, properly balanced, and
rich in nitrogen and other components.



Light - Whether grown indoors or
outdoors, tomato plants need exposure to full, strong light for at least five
hours each day.



Pollination – If tomatoes are to
bear fruit, they need to be pollinated. Unless growers are going to engage in
artificial pollination, the plants must be accessible to pollinators, which can
include insects and wind. Obviously, it is difficult to provide pollinator
access to plants grown indoors or in greenhouses.



Overall environmental conditions -
Tomato plants suffer when there are windy conditions, extreme heat or cold,
polluted air or soils, or presence of insects, blight or disease. Tomatoes need
adequate water, but they do not need to be drowned. Avoid overwatering as much
as you guard against drought.

Kevinbrendon

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Re: My tomato plant is not doing anything

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