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Do fruiting stems on toms die off after the fruit is harvested?

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Do fruiting stems on toms die off after the fruit is harvested?

Post  jymarino on Mon Jun 06, 2011 12:56 pm

Do fruiting tomato stems produce more than once on each stem? I have a long stem with several baby tomatos near the bottom of my Sweet 100. I am going to go back out today to see what else I can trim off of this guy to get him to stop taking so much airspace. Can I prune fruiting branches as I harvest them?

Also, and I can't find my SFG book to answer my question, I am not supposed to remove branches that are above the fruiting branches, correct? I can however remove the branches underneath the fruiting ones, that are obviously not fruiting themselves.

I am going to look at some of the pruning posts that are available as well.

Who knew that a simple tomato plant would give me so much stress? Rolling Eyes

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Re: Do fruiting stems on toms die off after the fruit is harvested?

Post  AZDYJ2K on Tue Jun 07, 2011 8:37 pm

I was hoping someone would respond to your post. I have a sick Roma tomato plant that is still producing fruit. I'm surprised because all the original leaves are now brown and dead and I haven't seen a flower on it in almost 2 months. I don't know how the new fruit appeared since I didn't notice any new blossoms.
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Re: Do fruiting stems on toms die off after the fruit is harvested?

Post  Furbalsmom on Wed Jun 08, 2011 3:47 am

Do fruiting tomato stems produce more than once on each stem? I have a long stem with several baby tomatos near the bottom of my Sweet 100. I am going to go back out today to see what else I can trim off of this guy to get him to stop taking so much airspace. Can I prune fruiting branches as I harvest them?

Also, and I can't find my SFG book to answer my question, I am not supposed to remove branches that are above the fruiting branches, correct? I can however remove the branches underneath the fruiting ones, that are obviously not fruiting themselves.
.

I have never seen a tomato stem produce more than once. Removing fruiting branches, once harvested, seems a good way to clean up the tomato plant.

Are you asking about removing suckers from the joints of tomatoes or branches from the tomatoes?

I know Acara prunes his plants very heavily. I will be taking off just suckers, except for a few branches at the bottom to keep the leaves away from the soil.
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Re: Do fruiting stems on toms die off after the fruit is harvested?

Post  acara on Wed Jun 08, 2011 6:31 pm

FWIW, I've seen Tom's throw a sucker off the fruiting stem, or keep developing as a branch, before the fruit ripens ...but I've never seen one do it after the branch produces fruit.

If it doesn't have any additional growth by the time I havest the fruit, I cut it off.

In my experience, trimming doesn't preclude future growth. If the plant wants to throw another branch, it will do so, just not at the exact same spot.

Normally when we get above 90 degrees & are going to stay there for a while, I'll go ahead and top & cut back my tomatoes (at least the varieties that I like) ... and I'll keep the growth to a minimum until the weather cools back down in Sept/Oct. Once it returns to sub-90's (so the blossom doesn't drop), I'll hit them with a dose of high-N fertilizer and they will throw new branches/leaves/flowers again.

If I don't catch any summer diseases on the plant; I end up getting a jump start on the "fall" season, without having to replant. I also get larger fruit in the fall because the plant doesn't have to mature again, or develop a root base from scratch.

The quantity is never as good (high) on the second go-round, but the fruit is generally as big or larger, and the harvest percentage is generally higher (less fruit mortality/spoilage).
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Re: Do fruiting stems on toms die off after the fruit is harvested?

Post  jymarino on Thu Jun 09, 2011 12:40 am

Thanks Acara, that is helpful to know. I don't really know if it will stay in the 90's here for a really long time, I'll have to check. If I top it off it will stop growing vertically but will keep growing horizontally? I already have trouble keeping this guy within his one foot square so I don't really want him to grow out too much more. I have been removing all the new suckers I have found and have pruned off several non-fruiting branches. I am not supposed to prune off the ones above the fruiting branches, correct? I am concerned about trimming off too much and having the plant not produce very well. Thanks as always for the advice!

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