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How to ripen late tomatoes

Overview

By September, any flowers that form on outdoor tomato plants are unlikely to turn into ripe fruits, so it's best to remove them. The aim is to ensure the plants concentrate their energy on ripening the fruits they have already produced, rather than forming new fruits and leaves.


How to do it

Flowers on a tomato plant

1

Well into September, outdoor tomato plants will continue to produce new flowers, even though there is no real chance of them ripening naturally.


Removing top of tomato plant

Your tomato plants should have formed three or four trusses of fruits by early autumn, so to ensure these all ripen, remove the top of each plant. Simply cut through the main stem a couple of leaves above the uppermost truss of green fruits.


Picking ripe tomatoes

Removing the top section of your plants may sound drastic, but it will encourage them to put all their efforts into producing ripe tomatoes. There is no point in them producing new fruits that have no hope of reaching maturity outdoors.




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