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Tomato Tuesday/Coastal & Tropical South

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Tomato Tuesday/Coastal & Tropical South

Post  sherryeo on Wed 20 Jul 2011 - 8:50

Yeaaaa! Another Coastal and Tropical South member did post! I was beginning to think I was out here all alone! Even though we've had 16 members now sign up for our region in the poll.

So glad to hear from you, Wapner! I hear ya about the heat and the rain. While the rain was welcome, so much of it all at once is a bit much. We had so much here last week that I've had to battle outbreaks of Powdery Mildew on my cukes, zukes and honey dew melons. It even seems to have tried to get a start on my southern peas, which I didn't realize were susceptible to PM. I've been zapping them with Neem and that seems to take care of it, so far.

My tomato plants, unlike yours, weren't looking healthy, though. I had gotten some good 'maters off them -the first time ever without having blossom end rot on the first batch - I credit the Mel's Mix for that. But then when it got soooo hot, they just stalled out and got curled up leaves. I think some little caterpillars or worms might have invaded them, so have been spraying with BT. The new growth is looking better and, as mentioned, a couple of them have come back to the point of blooming and one has set a few new tomatoes.

I have seedlings that have just sprouted and are under a grow light. I, too, am hoping it cools a little before I have to set them out. I've never tried fall tomatoes, but hope I'll have better luck with them. Nice to hear from you! I hope other C&TS members will follow suit!
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Re: Tomato Tuesday/Coastal & Tropical South

Post  Wapner on Wed 20 Jul 2011 - 9:27

Sherry,
Like you I've been fighting the Powdery Mildew on my cukes for what seems like months with Neem Oil. My pole beans got it too (I think) and they have finally quit producing so i pulled them up. A close inspection of my tomato plants reveals a few blooms but with this heat I'm just not holding out much hope they'll set. It was good while it lasted, though!

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Re: Tomato Tuesday/Coastal & Tropical South

Post  FarmerValerie on Wed 20 Jul 2011 - 11:46

sherryeo, I updated my tomato info on the LS TT post. Here you go.
http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t7281p45-tomato-tues-for-lower-south#77165

I am also headed over to update the Rookie Topic Southern Peas, weren't you one of those growing/asking about those. Some of my more "exotic" peas have bloomed, matured and been shelled.
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Re: Tomato Tuesday/Coastal & Tropical South

Post  sceleste54 on Wed 20 Jul 2011 - 18:33

My one remaining Tomato plant shriveled up over the course of a day, I can't complain too much because I got quite a few really marvelous tomatoes off it. I'm wondering if I just cut the vine back to maybe a foot or two if it will start back up??? Anyone else try that?? Its been so blasted hot and humid here I'm surprised it hasn't rotted away. We went for the longest time in a drought situation and then starting last week its been daily deluge !! I think I'm going to cut it back and see what happens, and try to root some new plants off the stalks...

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Tomato Tuesday/Coastal & Tropical South

Post  sherryeo on Wed 20 Jul 2011 - 19:16

Hi sceleste! I've never tried cutting a tomato plant back to see if it would rejuvenate. But if looks like it's done for anyway, I wonder what would be the harm in trying it to see what happens. Maybe somebody who is more knowledgeable will answer your question!

Good to hear from you, though. I hope more of our CTS folks will start posting on this Tomato Tuesday thread. We have some difficult gardening issues in our region and can use everyone's sharing their experiences, knowledge and problems - we can all learn from it!
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Re: Tomato Tuesday/Coastal & Tropical South

Post  acara on Thu 21 Jul 2011 - 4:31

Most varieties will come back if you top them, stunt them or otherwise trim back.

I stunted mine when the weather got above 90 (and I ran out of gardening time) & they are almost back to the point where I have to do it again (approx 6-7 weeks later).
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Re: Tomato Tuesday/Coastal & Tropical South

Post  Goosegirl on Thu 21 Jul 2011 - 5:52

acara wrote:Most varieties will come back if you top them, stunt them or otherwise trim back.

I stunted mine when the weather got above 90 (and I ran out of gardening time) & they are almost back to the point where I have to do it again (approx 6-7 weeks later).

QUESTION: I just pruned my 'maters for the first time ever (see N&C Midwest TTue Thread) and I am rooting some gorgeous suckers. Have you ever attempted to stunt them through a full winter to plant or let grow again the following spring? It is nearing the end of July and our season is no where near long enough to get anything off these suckers if planted outside this season. Folly to try? A worthy experiment? Just something to pass the time through the never-ending northern white season?

GG
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Re: Tomato Tuesday/Coastal & Tropical South

Post  FarmerValerie on Thu 21 Jul 2011 - 5:54

I have several tomatoes that either I, or tomato hornworms, or the goats, have topped out, and they came back so at this point what have you got to loose.
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Re: Tomato Tuesday/Coastal & Tropical South

Post  FarmerValerie on Thu 21 Jul 2011 - 6:00

What about putting them in 5-gallon buckets and making a frame for a mini-green house?
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Re: Tomato Tuesday/Coastal & Tropical South

Post  Goosegirl on Thu 21 Jul 2011 - 11:39

FarmerValerie wrote:What about putting them in 5-gallon buckets and making a frame for a mini-green house?

They would need to come inside the house because at -30F I would need to set up heat and such, along with having to shovel snow to get to it to keep checking on it. If I were going to do a greenhouse, I would do it up right and make myself a HUGE one!

I may be able to talk Hubby into a corner of the basement to set up my seed starting station and make it so that I could use the grow lights for bigger plants as well. Hmmmmmmmmmmm.....I'll get back to you on the outcome. He wants me to move my seed starting station/cabinet to the basement anyway (it DOES take up a good-sized corner of the diningroom), so this just may work!

GG
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Re: Tomato Tuesday/Coastal & Tropical South

Post  acara on Thu 21 Jul 2011 - 13:54

Goosegirl wrote: Have you ever attempted to stunt them through a full winter to plant or let grow again the following spring? It is nearing the end of July and our season is no where near long enough to get anything off these suckers if planted outside this season. Folly to try? A worthy experiment? Just something to pass the time through the never-ending northern white season?

GG

Tried, yes ....

Suceeded, kinda ...

The stunting affects your production (quantity, but not necessarily size of fruit) and is subject to "the law of diminishing returns" (you get less and less from the plant each time). I also find that there is a coorelation between plant age and disease susceptibility & the risk vs reward just isn't there for me.

I'll stunt between first/second season, but only because I'm gaining root development and soil nutrient maturity/accessibilty during summer months.

Personally, I don't perceive any benefit from stunting my tomato plants over winters ..... but that's completely based on my geography & growing style.
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Re: Tomato Tuesday/Coastal & Tropical South

Post  Goosegirl on Thu 21 Jul 2011 - 19:03

acara wrote:
Goosegirl wrote: Have you ever attempted to stunt them through a full winter to plant or let grow again the following spring? It is nearing the end of July and our season is no where near long enough to get anything off these suckers if planted outside this season. Folly to try? A worthy experiment? Just something to pass the time through the never-ending northern white season?

GG

Tried, yes ....

Suceeded, kinda ...

The stunting affects your production (quantity, but not necessarily size of fruit) and is subject to "the law of diminishing returns" (you get less and less from the plant each time). I also find that there is a coorelation between plant age and disease susceptibility & the risk vs reward just isn't there for me.

I think I may try to put my suckers into the ground even though I won't likely get production out of them this season. If I can get some good suckers off the suckers, I may be able to get the next generation to live through the winter under some grow lights. I don't need production out of them during the winter, I just want to see if I can get some generation to make it to spring for an early start outdoors! If I can manage anything from this I will update during the long cold winter.

GG
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