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Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  stripesmom on 7/22/2011, 11:28 am

I wonder about raccoons? I have one that hanging around and he's a real pain.

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  MasonGarden on 7/22/2011, 12:46 pm

In the 12 years we've lived here we've never seen a raccoon, but you never know. I just went out and took a closer look and saw that one of my pepper plants near the "disappearing tomato plant" is missing most of its leaves and part of the stalks, and I found the remains of a baby green bell pepper hanging on for dear life even though it was half-eaten. I suspect squirrels. I'm ready to encase my entire garden in a wire cage to keep them out before I lose any more!

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  BackyardBirdGardner on 7/22/2011, 12:47 pm

Could be my boxer, too. Don't ever rule her out! Wink

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  stripesmom on 7/22/2011, 1:21 pm

I forgot about BBG's pepper stealing dog, lol.

Last night, we had a thunder storm and a little wind. My peppers all blew over. I took some old tomato cages and turned them upside down to get the peppers braced back up. The plants are too big to use the cages the way they are designed. Guess I'll have to tie the cages to the pvc and hope for the best. I should have put them in cages to start with. This has been a learning experience and I need to keep better notes.

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  CindiLou on 7/22/2011, 3:15 pm

Glad you got some rain stripesmom! We got a whopping 1/10". Not enough to settle the dust. But at least I still have faith we will get more this week! We still have 20-30% chance through Sunday! Cool

but that is the last in the week forecast! Sad

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  MasonGarden on 7/22/2011, 3:26 pm

lol! BBG I will definitely keep an eye out for that dastardly boxer of yours!

Stripesmom - I'm learning too! I should have accounted for the squirrels in my planning. I raised the beds to 18" to keep out the rabbits, but I forgot about the agility of our furry-tailed, tree-climbing neighbors. Sigh!

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  stripesmom on 7/22/2011, 3:41 pm

The boxes are dry as bones now. That rain was nice this morning though. I covered my peppers with some shade cloth. I didn't think I'd need to by this time in their lives, but they are so limp and lifeless. Guess it's watering time again.

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  Goosegirl on 7/22/2011, 9:53 pm

True Test of Friendship:

While I am watching my friend's house, garden, and dog while she is out of town on a job, I weeded her (row) garden and staked and (mildly) pruned her tomatoes. Even tho' she has only actually been out of town for a few days, the last month has been so hectic for her that she has not been able to do anything in her garden for the whole month. (yes, a ROW garden unweeded for a whole month - BOY AM I TIRED!) The little round tomato cages that she had were completely buried in foliage and some of them had even been pushed over by the amount of branches and fruit. I took my extra 5' stakes over (the ones I no longer need with my trellises). Will a friendship survive messing with another woman's tomatoes? Stay tuned.....

GG

PS - When I was out of town and she was watching my critters and house, she cleaned my fridge. Talk about GUILT! Embarassed

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  stripesmom on 7/23/2011, 8:28 am

Your a good friend GG. A person could only hope to have such a good friend.

I went to my garden this morning and there on the ground, was a 1/2 eaten tomato. I know it was that raccoon. He's been getting into my garbage every night, so I figured out how to secure that. Now, he's in my garden. I've tried a live trap and he got out of it after it sprung. I didn't realize that was possible, but saw a video on youtube, so I know they can do it.

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  Goosegirl on 7/23/2011, 9:01 am

Not surprised they are escape artists. I wouldn't put ANYTHING past raccoons! So far I have really not had a pest problem except some bunnies that ended up using my broccoli and peas as trap crops. They left my onions, tomatoes, and beans alone, so I am very happy with that.

But, how do you like my new tomato shade cloth for the heat wave we have been having? This is what I found when I went out to check my garden this morning after the severe T-Storms we had early this morning.




Note: I do not own a patio table with umbrella. This came from the neighbor's place. In the background of the second pic you can see the rest of the table. What it does not show clearly is the chair that is wedged under the table as well. I have removed and returned it!tongue

GG

PS - The EMT conduit trellis DID NOT BUDGE with the storm blasting the umbrella straight into it from the south. Dems good stuff!


Last edited by Goosegirl on 7/23/2011, 9:05 am; edited 2 times in total (Reason for editing : post script)

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COMPOSTING:  The only time 'Garbage In' does not equal 'Garbage Out'!

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  stripesmom on 7/23/2011, 9:27 am

I be running out there screaming GG. I hope nothing was hurt too much. I've done the same thing though, lol. Lately, I'm pinning sheets to my pvc and trying to keep it a little shadier. Oh, I've not shaded the tomatoes, just the peppers as they seem to really feel it the most.

I read that you can plant cucumbers with your corn to deter raccoons, because they don't like to walk on the spines from the cukes. But that would mean trailing the cucumbers all over and I like them on a trellis. Maybe as the tom's get ripe, I should wrap them in a bundle of cucumber leaves.

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  Furbalsmom on 7/23/2011, 1:51 pm

My Goodness!

Well, here you have had a successful test of the sturdiness of EMT trellises. At least the umbrella did not make shish kabob out of your veggies.

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  Goosegirl on 7/23/2011, 2:04 pm

@stripesmom wrote:I read that you can plant cucumbers with your corn to deter raccoons, because they don't like to walk on the spines from the cukes. But that would mean trailing the cucumbers all over and I like them on a trellis. Maybe as the tom's get ripe, I should wrap them in a bundle of cucumber leaves.


Any kind of vining squash will work - Baby Bear or Jack Be Little pumpkins would be good for that, as you would not be trying to harvest them through the whole season, just at the very end when the corn is basically done anyway. Also, there are not nearly as many fruits to try to find among the leaves, and the ORANGE color blasting at you would be easier to find than tiny green cukes among shaded green leaves, under tall green corn stalks.........

GG

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  stripesmom on 7/23/2011, 2:40 pm

GG, I was thinking of using the cukes to prevent the raccoon's from casually walking by and snagging a tomato. But then, I'd have to have the vines sprawled all over the ground where I walk too.
THE CRIME SCENE-


As you can see, walking is already precarious as it is. This is the back of my garden, not as easy to get to, which is why I have 2 ft. wide boxes in this part. I try not to go back here very often. I think I'm going to start scattering old yellow cucumber leaves on the ground as well as scrapes. I read that raccoon's don't like the smell of cucumber either.


However, you did give me a neat idea. I'm wondering if I could use the little pumpkins as ground cover in the SFG itself. Not putting the pumpkins on a trellis and letting them sprawl around the tomatoes feet. Maybe use straw as a mulch and then the pumpkins on top as almost an edible decoration. What did you do with your pumpkins?

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  Goosegirl on 7/23/2011, 3:14 pm

This year I only have big blue Jarrahdale pumpkins growing out of a strawbale raised bed/compost pile. I just threw a bunch of the seeds on one end and hoped for the best as a 'cover' crop to hide the compost heap. In the past, when I have done the Baby Bears and the Sugar Pies I cook them up, run them through the food processor, then freeze them in pint bags so they are measured and ready for any squash or pumpkin recipes.

I found a Pumpkin Bread recipe that I am itching to try. It is not for a quickbread, but actually a high-fiber yeast bread recipe. As a diabetic, the dietician wants me to include as much fiber as I can possibly stand, so I am looking for more ways.....

GG

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  mijejo on 7/23/2011, 4:37 pm

I use both cucumber and squash to deter raccoons. I have squash growing with my corn in a Three Sisters arrangement. In addition, as I prune cucumber and squash leaves from other areas of the garden, I arrange them on the ground around the Three Sisters' bed with thorny side up. So far, no critter larger than insects has invaded the crop. Good luck!

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  stripesmom on 7/23/2011, 4:52 pm

Thank you mijejo, this is what I started to do today.

Plus, sat up the live trap one more time. DH says he'll check it before he goes to work and if the creature is in there, he'll take him farther out in the country.

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  Goosegirl on 7/26/2011, 8:55 am

My first babies! Orange Romas, or Purple Russians, or Yellow somethings, or a cross of any/all of these and whatever else bloomed in my garden last year:oops:

GG

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COMPOSTING:  The only time 'Garbage In' does not equal 'Garbage Out'!

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  stripesmom on 7/26/2011, 9:15 am

How nice GG, they look so pretty!



The raccoon has been devastating my tomatoes. He's eaten all the tomatoes on the lower parts and is now climbing the trellis to get to the upper ones. I'm going to try a product called liquid fence to see if that will help. I would like to build a fence, but it's not in the budget and I don't know how I'd put one around it anyway.

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  BackyardBirdGardner on 7/26/2011, 2:18 pm

Just thought I'd toss it out that I have a much better % this year of keepers! I have three inside, one already eaten (YUM), and lots more on the vine. I only had to toss one that a critter sampled...and it was partially BER'd anyway....really goofy looking.



So far, this season is heading for personal records. Now, if we can just get the heat to break a bit down here.

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Jul 26 update

Post  MarcyG on 7/26/2011, 5:39 pm

Fouth of July's Looking like they are starting to blush


My Tallest plant that had a little accident over the weekend after a storm came through the area


My fix seems to be holding up well


My first Red tom's

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Any ideas for encouraging more tomatoes?

Post  ChicagoLaura on 7/26/2011, 10:38 pm

Maybe I'm just impatient... But does anyone have suggestions on how to encourage more fruit to set on my brandywine that has only two *huge* green tomatoes growing on a tall but somewhat spindly plant? There are only a few blossoms...up very high (can't imagine big tomatoes up so high!). I did mulch with lovely compost yesterday to try to give everybody some extra love....

Any suggestions?

Laura

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  unmadecastle on 7/26/2011, 10:51 pm

@ChicagoLaura wrote:Maybe I'm just impatient... But does anyone have suggestions on how to encourage more fruit to set on my brandywine that has only two *huge* green tomatoes growing on a tall but somewhat spindly plant? There are only a few blossoms...up very high (can't imagine big tomatoes up so high!). I did mulch with lovely compost yesterday to try to give everybody some extra love....

Any suggestions?

Laura



I don't have any ideas for you, but I have noticed on my tomatoes (I have one tomato on each plant) that the blossoms keep falling off or they just dont produce any fruit. I am really getting disgusted with them. I was talking to my sister earlier tonight (she lives 3 hours south of me) and she said that she isn't getting tomatoes either.

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  Goosegirl on 7/27/2011, 8:14 am

Well, I did my post-storm check and the garden survived just fine. Onions, beans, and corn have been blown over pretty well, but it is not the first time, and they always seem to pop back up (a little help needed for the corn, but that's do-able!). I found babies on 2 more tomato plants, one set of babies looks just like the ones I posted yesterday. I noticed that they seem to have green shoulders visible - looks like I am going to have a bumper crop of Purple Russians, or at least a Purple Russian Cross! The other new baby is too small to even guess at its real shape, so maybe in a few more days I will know what else I might have.



Love my mystery garden!



GG

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

Post  laurainwinona on 7/30/2011, 4:33 pm

I was gone for three weeks. My tomato (Big Boy or Better Boy, i forget which) was only about 18 in high when we left. Friends watered and picked beans for us while we were gone. When we got back, the tomato had taken over about 75% of the 4x4 box!! It had lots of flowers and 4 tomatoes. I pruned it severely....I hope it survives!! But at least it is not squishing everything else in that box. I saved some of the bigger branches I had cut off because they had flowers on them. I stuck them in a bucket of water....will they develop roots? If they do, I'll plant them in pots and see what happens. I see lots of you are having fun with your tomatoes. Hope those of you suffering in the heat and not getting tomatoes get a break soon!

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Re: Tomato Tuesday Thread (N&C Midwest)..

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