Latest posts by Italophile

Supermarket tomato sprouting

Posted: 05/07/2015 at 15:15

Good grief. You'd have to think the tom has been stored for too long at too warm a temperature. Ye the skin of the tomato doesn't seem to have deteriorated as it would in that situation.

Few flowers on tomotoes

Posted: 05/07/2015 at 11:44

The side shoot will more than likely develop into a growing tip. Wait and see what happens.


Posted: 05/07/2015 at 11:43

And melon and cucumber leaves are prone to diseases like mildew, particularly if the foliage gets wet during watering. 

Moving my tomatoes

Posted: 05/07/2015 at 11:01

I'm with Blue Dragon, although tomato roots are very sturdy things and can take handling. Even mishandling. I've transplanted a few fruiting plants in my time, transferring from the ground into pots and vice versa.

Wait for the coolest part of the day, take all care, and don't expose the transplant to any direct sun for at least a couple of days. And, as Blue Dragon says, water well.


Supermarket tomato sprouting

Posted: 05/07/2015 at 10:52

I've never seen it but I recall it being posted about here before. Inside the tomato, the seeds are coated in a greeny-yellowy gel. It's a naturally-occurring germination inhibitor designed to stop exactly what has happened. It's also the gel that has to be rinsed off if you're saving seeds to grow next season. 

It's likely that for whatever reason, maybe a genetic glitch, the inhibitor has broken down somehow.

beefstake tomatoes

Posted: 05/07/2015 at 10:42

NM, beefsteaks are, by definition, on the larger side so there aren't many fast-maturing varieties. They usually take 70 days or longer from planting out to maturity and that's in prime conditions, prolonged warm weather, etc.

I have half a dozen beefsteak varieties in the ground. 70 days from planting out ticked over the other day. Seriously warm weather has only hit here in the last month - very high 20s into the mid-30s - and the first beefsteak is probably another 10 days away from maturity.

How long is your viable growing season?


Posted: 05/07/2015 at 10:30

And if a decision is made to spray, the spray has to be preventive, before the first symptoms of infection appear. Spraying after their appearance is pretty much a waste of time.

Few flowers on tomotoes

Posted: 05/07/2015 at 10:24

Banana skins do contain those nutrients but I suspect the nutrients won't be available until the skins have broken down in the soil (ie, decomposed). 


Posted: 04/07/2015 at 11:03

Chrissy, watering the leaves doesn't cause Blossom End Rot. BER is caused by plant stress, the stress basically interfering with the plant's internal system for distributing calcium to the fruit. There can be all the calcium in the world available to the plant's roots but not enough gets to the fruit. Plant stress can be caused by all sorts of things - irregular watering patterns, strong winds, fluctuating temperatures, etc.

And, for whatever reason, some varieties are more prone to BER than others. The plum varieties - Roma, etc - are always candidates for BER even when other varieties grown around them, under exactly the same conditions, remain free of it.

Few flowers on tomotoes

Posted: 04/07/2015 at 07:40

I can't stress enough how inherently tough tomato plants are, forget-me-not. I think I've told the story here before about the plants I swapped with my local fruttivendolo (greengrocer). He would dig his up out of the ground - they'd probably been in the ground a couple of weeks - and jam them into a bucket with only the soil attached to their roots.

One year he gave me too many. I left two in the bucket - still with only the soil attached to their roots - and forgot all about them. They sat in full sun in temps into the 30s without water, fertiliser, anything. I came across them later in the season. They'd more than doubled in size and one had started fruiting before it died.

It's a worthwhile experiment to isolate one potted plant and give it a minimum of water and fertiliser. Just keep it alive. But make sure that the watering regime, whatever it is, is regular. Irregular watering patterns will stress a plant and could cause problems like Blossom End Rot. Compare the plant's performance against the others at the end of the season.

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