Best tomato year since the Reagan administration

This has been the best year that I've had for tomatoes since the 1980s, it's more than made up for last year's disaster. The most prolific plants have been the Sugar Snacks which have produced many hundreds of tomatoes. The Grape and Sun Gold Cherrys are also producing countless tomatoes, the Tellow Pears are also doing OK but not as well as the Sugar Snacks, Sun Golds and Grapes. My large varieties are just now starting to ripen but they are all heavy with tomatoes. The first to start ripening have been the Cherokee Purples, but now I'm getting Black Princes and Cosmonaut Volkov's. I started the Black Princes and Cosmonaut Volkov's from seed, this is the first time that I've been successful doing that.
The hot dry weather gets most of the credit, but the other thing that's different this year is that I covered my garden with a horse manure mulch.
My cucumbers and corn are also doing well, they both failed completely last year. The disappointment has been my blueberry bushes, last year in they produced so many berries that I still have a freezer full of them, this year I only got berries for a couple of weeks.
I'm in Massachusetts. Is everyone else having a good year also?
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

including fall/winter '09 were outstanding. The freezers are still pretty well stocked so I guess three out of four ain't bad. From late February onward I've battled a bumper crop of grasshoppers! Most years, shield bugs are the major summertime pests. This year, though, the grasshoppers truly have reached pestilence proportions. They put a major hurting on all of my beans. Finally pulled up the baby lima beans because the 'hoppers were going up the racemes eating bean blossoms like kernels of corn on the cob. Now, they are cutting off eggplant (aubergine) blossoms and leaves. While they're eating some of the leaves, the major injury is that they just cut off leaves and blossoms, leaving them hanging by a tiny thread of tissue. Getting a few eggplant but nothing like I had hoped. In late winter, I intend to apply "Semaspore Bait" (Nosema locustae) on at least the cleared area.     An unusually wet spring brought mildew onto the February garden peas, which I had to remove from the garden on 1 May; foot.     Tomatoes only so-so. Pulled and composted the Brandywines early on and replaced them with "Big Boy", which meant a late start for them. The weather is cooling somewhat so am hopeful that blossoms will begin once again to "stick".     For the first time in several years, I have garden beds fallow, a practice which I abandoned as counterproductive (at least in a small scale dooryard garden) about 30 years ago. Well, not exactly fallow: I did leave as many of the marigolds as possible. I guess the butterflies think me a pretty nice guy; just shows what they know. LOL! Still have a couple of weeks before planting for fall-winter. Usually wait until sometime during the first couple of weeks in Oct., when temperatures begin to moderate somewhat, but this year, I think I'll crowd it a bit because there'll be plenty of time to replant, if necessary.
--
the Balvenieman
USDA zone 9a-b, peninsular Florida, U.S.A.
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
General Schvantzkoph wrote:

We had a flock of tomato plants and averaged under two tomatoes per plant. Not a good year here in Chicago metro area. The herbs all did great.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

for my retirement and dealing with my replacement, I neglected my garden horribly. In my haste, I planted everything to close, little maintenance and just left to nature. Still I have enough for eating and tasted ok. Perhaps a third as I hoped for canning and not as tasty. The tomato horn worms did lots of damage. This is my first week of freedom. Next year will be great year for gardening!
--
Enjoy Life... Dan L

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
Dan L wrote: ...

we had fewer worms this year, but i have no idea why other than the most likeliest explanations, fewer eggs were laid or more eggs were eaten by other bugs.
my better idea is that we have more birds around this year who are eating all sorts of things. i've enjoyed watching the bluebirds wrestling the huge grasshoppers in the crushed limestone. we do not feed the birds, we only have birdbaths for them. so they actually have to forage.

congrats! and welcome to the funny farm. :)
songbird
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
General Schvantzkoph wrote: ...

we've done fine this year so far, the Sweet 100 cherry tomato plants (we really did not need more than 1) have been producing about a quart a day now. we just had some rain so anything that was near ripe has split, so i'll have to throw a few lbs of them over the fence.
our bigger tomatoes have also done fine (i'm not sure if these were Beef Steak or Better Boy -- i'll have to ask the greenhouse what they had) i think we've canned about 40 quarts of tomatoes so far and given away a few bushels and eaten a few bushels too. and there are plenty still out there if we get enough sunshine to finish them off. might be a challenge as we can get a frost within a few weeks and we have some cooler nights coming now (mid 40s). the hot dry weather in the 90s were ok with the clay holding the moisture and the deep watering that we do (using buckets down a foot and a half with holes in the bottom). we watered about every 4-5 days and had rain all summer at about three week intervals.
compared to last year we have actually not had as good of a year, but i think much of that is the two cherry tomatoes on the end of the four rows of larger tomatoes have blocked most of the evening light.
still, on the whole, can't complain at all.
songbird
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

:)
--
Enjoy Life... Dan L

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

I'd recommend 4 gallon pots for the basil (paint black if it is a cold year), and clear plastic mulch and drip irrigation for the tomatoes. Even in my crummy location (under trees, north side of hill, 6 full hours of sunshine), I've been 3 weeks ahead of other local gardeners. To the above, you may want to add a hoop house, if you have full sun.
--
- Billy
"Fascism should more properly be called corporatism because it is the
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Do you mean for the first summer period of the year or the second one? I did average for the first summer period of the year and I've not yet planted for the second summer period so I can't forecast how my toms will go then. I expect I'll get some cherry toms before the end of the calendar year though.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
On Wed, 08 Sep 2010 13:56:07 +1000, FarmI wrote:

What do you mean by second summer period? Where do you live? In New England it's always touch and go about having enough time for one crop to come in before it turns cold.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
says...

Farml is in Australia.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

The summer that starts on 1 December 2010 (as oppossed to the first summer period of the year which was in January and February 2010).
Where do you live? In New

I live in the Southern Hemisphere.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

declaring North America to have two Winters because the season begins in December of one year and ends in March of the year following. It's the sort of thing that smelly old men find amusing to do to children. I have family in MA and he has the same problem as you in regards to the short gardening season.
--
Derald

Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Hey, Stinky, like some free-market Kool Aid?
http://www.vanityfair.com/politics/features/2007/12/bush200712
The Economic Consequences of Mr. Bush The next president will have to deal with yet another crippling legacy of George W. Bush: the economy. A Nobel laureate, Joseph E. Stiglitz, sees a generation-long struggle to recoup. by Joseph E. Stiglitz December 2007
When we look back someday at the catastrophe that was the Bush administration, we will think of many things: the tragedy of the Iraq war, the shame of Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib, the erosion of civil liberties. The damage done to the American economy does not make front-page headlines every day, but the repercussions will be felt beyond the lifetime of anyone reading this page.
I can hear an irritated counterthrust already. The president has not driven the United States into a recession during his almost seven years in office. Unemployment stands at a respectable 4.6 percent. Well, fine. But the other side of the ledger groans with distress: a tax code that has become hideously biased in favor of the rich; a national debt that will probably have grown 70 percent by the time this president leaves Washington; a swelling cascade of mortgage defaults; a record near-$850 billion trade deficit; oil prices that are higher than they have ever been; and a dollar so weak that for an American to buy a cup of coffee in London or Paris--or even the Yukon--becomes a venture in high finance.
And it gets worse. After almost seven years of this president, the United States is less prepared than ever to face the future. We have not been educating enough engineers and scientists, people with the skills we will need to compete with China and India. We have not been investing in the kinds of basic research that made us the technological powerhouse of the late 20th century. And although the president now understands--or so he says--that we must begin to wean ourselves from oil and coal, we have on his watch become more deeply dependent on both. (cont.)
--
- Billy
"Fascism should more properly be called corporatism because it is the
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
General Schvantzkoph said:

was disasterous. I have a theory that the wet spring and early summer led to underdeveloped root systems, leaving the plants less able to cope with the dramatic shift in moisture. (I wasn't able to do enough watering to make up for the lack of rain.)
The pole beans stopped setting and dropped a ton of leaves and I lost the last planting of sweet corn. (We had the first Labor Day without sweet corn and pole beans in many years.)
The SunSugar and grapes tomatoes were OK; for the sauce tomatoes I had my smallest harvest in many years, and the slicers tapered off to almost nothing.
Zuchinnis and cucumbers never recovered from the attack of cucumber beetles that happend in early June (while I was out of state).
Cabbage is dwarfed (wilting every day must do that to them).
--
Pat in Plymouth MI

"Vegetables are like bombs packed tight with all kinds of important
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
In article

Cold summer here in northern California but everything has been producing for the last month. Glacier tomatoes were a sight for sore eyes, but they don't have much taste. Think I'll stick with Stupice next year for my early tomatoes. Old German is producing some softball size tomatoes, and the Green Zebras and Blondkopfchen (cherry) are tart and good for salads. I'm still waiting on the Brandywines, and the Gold Medals. Best crop we've ever had for sweet peppers, Quadrato di Asti, Corno di Toro, Giant Szgedi, and Yellow Wax. We are still waiting for the Quadrato to turn red, before we start harvesting them. Nothing like grilled, red bell pepper. The Corno di Toro, and Giant Szgedi are sauteed as a side dish, and the Yellow wax go fresh into salads. Rascally Raccoon scratched out half of the potatoes, but the potatoes with tomato cages are doing fine, and going dormant now. Great year for lettuce. The sugar pumpkin initially headed south, until it ran into the shade from our fence, now has doubled back heading east, looking like it's going to make a break for it;O) Bad year for the cukes, but that was because I was having brain farts. The zuchs have settled down, and we don't have to eat them every night (Gott sei dank).
Already laying out the 2011 garden plan. Crop rotation is really hard, because I grow 3 Solanaceae, and there is only so much good light in the yard. The temptation is to follow Solanum with Capsicum this year, and then I'll have it mostly sorted out after that.
--
- Billy
"Fascism should more properly be called corporatism because it is the
  Click to see the full signature.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload
wrote:

Oh you lucky devil! Terrible, terrible year for tomatoes in the Eugene, OR area. After dealing us a brutal, lingering winter, virtually no spring and erratic summer weather, Mother Nature is not my favorite lady. Now it's turned cold and rainy - down to the 40's at night. Odds on anything maturing at this point slim to none. Of my 8 tomato plants, only the Sun Golds have produced anything edible - a grand total of six little ripe cherry tomatoes.
Even the local farm stand is importing tomatoes from Washington. Very tough for these nice people who make a good portion of their yearly income from their tomato crop. I'd kill for a real home grown beefsteak about now...and I sure won't be doing any canning this year.
Our apple, plum, and pear trees took bad hits from late frosts and have produced poorly, if at all, and the birds got most of our blueberries. At least my squashes and bush beans are producing (sigh).
Nancy T
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Lucky you! I had the complete opposite...wonderful production last year (bringing in about 200 tomatoes each week), versus three or four small tomatoes a week this year! --S.
Add pictures here
<% if( /^image/.test(type) ){ %>
<% } %>
<%-name%>
Add image file
Upload

Related Threads

    HomeOwnersHub.com is a website for homeowners and building and maintenance pros. It is not affiliated with any of the manufacturers or service providers discussed here. All logos and trade names are the property of their respective owners.