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How to ripen late tomatoes

A table displaying which months are best to sow, plant and harvest.
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
At its best
At its best

Plant is not at its best in January

Plant is not at its best in February

Plant is not at its best in March

Plant is not at its best in April

Plant is not at its best in May

Plant is not at its best in June

Plant is not at its best in July

Plant is not at its best in August

Plant is at its best in September

Plant is not at its best in October

Plant is not at its best in November

Plant is not at its best in December

To do
To do

Do not To do in January

Do not To do in February

Do not To do in March

Do not To do in April

Do not To do in May

Do not To do in June

Do not To do in July

Do not To do in August

Do To do in September

Do not To do in October

Do not To do in November

Do not To do in December

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.

You will need

Outdoor tomato plants

Secateurs

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Total time:

Step 1

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

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Step 2

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.

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Step 3

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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