Tomato performance update so far this year..........

My Jet Stars are ripening first and giving me my first vine ripened fruit. Champion ll are setting about a dozen med. size fruit per plant. Plants are well behaved and lend themselves well to staking. First Prize are getting very nice sized fruit and about ten per plant. Abraham Lincoln are growing large and kind of unruly to stake but they are producing close to 30 med. size fruit per plant. All of the above mentioned plants will be in my garden again next year. Most of my heirlooms won't be. Kelloggs Breakfast only has two tomatoes. Pruden's purple, about half a dozen per plant. Mortgage Lifter about a half dozen fruit. Rutgers isn't doing too bad for a small (determinate) plant with about a dozen med. size fruit. If a tomato plant doesn't give me at least ten to twelve nice size tomatoes, I don't feel it's worth the garden space. Along with my keepers, next season I will be trying Lemon Boy, Better Boy, Big Beef, Super Fantastic and Gardeners Delight as my cherry tomato. My small tomatoes this year were red and yellow pear which are producing well but just not enough zing in the flavor for my taste buds.
Rich from Central PA
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White_Noise snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (EVP MAN) wrote:

Well, ya know, you have to pay for hybrid vigor. But if you want to unplug from the grid, you have to go "open pollinated". "Open pollination" allows you to save seeds, and replant the following year. "Open pollinated" seeds have been created to please the grower, and within a couple of generations, they will adapt to your growing region. Otherwise, if you want hybrid seeds, you'll have to pay the man what he wants for his seeds. Good luck with that, when dealing with Monsanto..
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Tomatoes are a real good source of food.Tomato growth is very important in all aspects.Tomatoes have been in abundance in this year which is a good sign of a good harvest
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Wilt got all 4 of my plants this year - both the brandywine and the rutgers. Since this is the 4th time I've tried tomatoes over the last 6 or 7 years, and the plants have all died of wilt, I'm not going to try again. And, yes, I've tried both in-ground and containered.
On Wed, 21 Jul 2010 00:22:57 -0400, White_Noise snipped-for-privacy@webtv.net (EVP MAN) wrote:

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And the soil in the container was fresh potting soil? I guess the next step would be sterilizing the container (bleach solution), and all the potting soil (heat). You would also want to change the supplier of the starts. Then you should have a good idea as to whether you were screwing up (and we all do from time to time;O) or whether it was really wilt, because if you still got wilt, it would have to come from the supplier. This can happen, even from seed.

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wrote:

Wilt, once it begins, is spread by air, too. We had it bad last year, and even in a pristine containers and fresh, bagged soil and plants grown from packaged seed sown directly in the soil, I have one corner that is coming up with it much early than usual...nothing like last years, but the weather is better this year. I've lost most of one tub of cukes and one of tomatoes, one of yellow squash, but the rest of the cucurbits and tomatoes seem ok so far....so far....
Boron
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You responded to my post, but didn't answer any of my diagnostic questions.
Yes, mold, mildew, and wilt can be spread through the air. I may be too late, but have you considered tenting them?
"The shelters keep tomato leaves dry - and spores of late blight must land on wet leaves to infect the plant.", according to <http://www.sunset.com/garden/fruits-veggies/cover-tomato-plants-beat-bli ght-00400000017182/>
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wrote:

OH, I beg your pardon..Am I under some obligation to you somehow?

Whey would I have consider tenting them this year when last year was anomalous? There was no indication that any repeat of what happened last year would occur again. And once it appears, even fungicides are useless in prevention and general area spread.
And no, I would not consider tenting anyway.

BS in that sort of setting. Take a look at that thing, will you? It's impractical and damn near useless. Do you think that the wind doesn't blow when it rains around here or at other times? And it'd require a ground level irrigation system, rather tricky (not impossible) and pricey with all the containers.
If you look up journal articles about controlling late blight under greenhouse conditions, it mentions surface watering vs above-plant irrigation, but also generally requires fungicides as well. I don't use them, but suspect that field crops would need them, too...and they are used as preventives, not treatments, anyway. And I hate to break the news to you, but even under such a device, some dew will collect.
I pull up and properly dispose of diseased plant matter immediately to prevent spread as best as possible and this, too, shall pass. That the blight is becoming virulent earlier this season as it did last seems to be a surprise to many growers and extension services, but eventually, this strain and some other weather patterns will help control it naturally. It may take awhile, several seasons, but I am not using my tomatoes and cukes to feed a starving family. I've been at this for 30 years and bugs and blights wax and wane. I'm not going anywhere.
Boron
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brand-new containers and fresh potting soil. I started the seeds in the containers. So, no, prior contamination is not the issue. This land used to be a peach orchard many years ago, could be something left in the soil. Since there is a local farmers market, I'll just get my tomatoes there.
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Did you have a problem with heat and humidity? According to one site that I looked at, wilt spores require that the leaf be damp for them to germinate.
"The shelters keep tomato leaves dry - and spores of late blight must land on wet leaves to infect the plant.", according to <http://www.sunset.com/garden/fruits-veggies/cover-tomato-plants-beat-bli ght-00400000017182/> If you live where peaches are grown, you may still have time to grow some 60 days to maturity (DM) tomatoes, like Stupice, Sweet Million, Porter, Orange Giant, or even Old German (78 DM).
"Just picked and still warm" are the sweetest tomatoes.
Good luck

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Heat and humidity are the watchwords around here - it's all we get in the summer!
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My tomatoes are doing very well this year (Better Boy VFN). The story here this year has been the unusually hot summer - literally weeks on end, now. The good part is that I had ripe tomatoes 3 weeks early (literally everything has been 3 weeks early this year). The bad part is that the excessive heat (read: "75-77 degree nights") has caused a lot of blossom drop, but I'm sure that will slow down as the weather cools. The tomatoes are big, beautiful and delicious. I sought out a low-nitrogen fertilizer to use on them this year, and found a 100% natural fertilizer mad by the Jobe's people. It stinks to the high heaven, but I have to say it's the most effective fertilizer for tomatoes I've ever used.
Tony M.
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