Watering Tomatoes

With our amiable discussion of "blossom end rot", and the merits of avoiding water stress in the vine, solidly fixed in the rear view mirror, I send along some views on watering published by our local "fish wrap", a vassal of the NYT. Unfortunately, it says nothing about container gardening.
<http://www.pressdemocrat.com/article/20100630/LIFESTYLE/100639909/1314/l ifestyle04?Title=McCreary-Tips-on-tomatoes-and-sweet-corn>
Here are a few tactics about tomato culture to keep them healthy and productive between now and then (harvest). Most are related to watering routines.
Extra water is not welcome. The best way to determine if water is needed is to probe into the soil 4 to 6 inches beneath the surface. The top inch or two should always dry out a bit before rewatering to guard against fungal diseases, but lower levels should stay moist, never soggy. Because clay soil holds water longer than sandy ground, watering is never the same in these two conditions even when both types are heavily mulched, as they should be. With clay, tomatoes may need watering only once a week.
Guard against flavor loss. Too much water reduces flavor in tomatoes just as it does with berries and other fruits. Flavor loss may also be attributed to weather, but that, of course, is beyond our control. Sub-soil moisture lasts. Watering deeply and infrequently is good general advice for many plants, both edible and ornamental, that are planted in heavy soil. Even though we probe with a trowel to determine moisture content below the surface, we can never test the deeper layers where tomato roots extend. Frequent heavy watering saturates lower levels of soil and deep roots will rot.
Don't fret about drought. At least, not if you've prepped the soil with plenty of compost before you planted. Several years ago, a gardening friend replicated the technique that his father had used in growing tomatoes by not watering during summer, not even once. At planting time he used a posthole digger to remove 3 feet of clay soil, amended half the volume of soil with compost, and watered thoroughly. As he expected, he harvested a fine crop.
Go light on fertilizer. Although tomatoes benefit greatly from fertile soil, too much of a good thing goes wrong. Side dressing with compost and/or applying light doses of fish emulsion every month is all that's needed. Too much nitrogen produces an excess of foliage and a paucity of fruit. -----
Wishing you all the best of barbecues for the week-end, especially here in the US, where we celebrate throwing off our colonial masters by observing "Independence Day". Additionally, I wish a quick return home for our boys and girls overseas, and justice for the greedy, who have wrought so much pain and suffering in the world.
--
- Billy
"Fascism should more properly be called corporatism because it is the
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Useful info in one place. As usual.
I grow Phlox as a early warning for the need to water. When it droops time to water. I tend to drip often and sometimes before the Phlox says help. Especially when it is going hot. Currently graphing our high water table from April which flooded many homes from the bottom up and played havoc with septic fields. . First time in 60 years. Strange hoe a few feet of water level can have such effect.
But now it is July 3 and the surface moisture and humidity are low so we are on fire watch. Perhap 100 F. Tuesday.
--
Bill S. Jersey USA zone 5 shade garden
What use one more wake up call?
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wrote:

My Tomato plants are in pots, So I find myself watering just about every to every other day. Dry weather sucks the moisture out of the pots. Plenty of brown lawns can be found in our area.
Cheers Zone 6/7a
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BTW This in process now as son on way here.
Crab and Asparagus Soup With green onions and cilantro
Ingredients
2 Tbls. Peanut Oil 1/2 cup Shallots peeled and sliced 1 lb. Crab meat 4 cups Chicken stock 1 lb. Asparagus 2 eggs beaten 2 Tbls. Fish sauce 3 Tbls. Soy sauce
1 Tbls. Corn starch I Tbls. Water To taste white pepper
3 Tbls. Chopped Cilantro 3 Tbls. Chopped green onions ( Green Part only ) 1 Cup pea sprouts
Method
1. Sweat the shallots in the oil over medium heat. Add the crab and Asparagus sauté 2 minutes stir gently
2. Add chicken stock bring to a boil . Slowly pour in eggs while stirring gently. Use a Crockpot pot.
3. Combine the corn starch and water in a small bowl and mix to make a slurry. Pour into the boiling soup while stirring and cook five minutes.
4. Remove from heat and add the soy sauce, fish sauce and white pepper.
5. Ladle into warm deep bowls and garnish with Cilantro, green Onions, Pea sprouts and tempura fried Asparagus spears. Serve immediately.
--
Bill S. Jersey USA zone 5 shade garden
What use one more wake up call?
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Looks good, but soup on a hot day?
--
- Billy
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You have to be a bit crazy but those crazy Arabs drink hot tea ... Hmmmm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tea
Kids about and given small tasks it is good.
--
Bill S. Jersey USA zone 5 shade garden
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