Happily, the Brandywine in the main tomato bed produced over 30 tomatoes before I beheaded it. It was quite disease and mildew resistant. We had unusually cool and wet weather all spring and summer in this part of southern Ontario (Zone 6), so powdery mildew wasn't a problem. Then we had about 2 drops of rain in September and the powdery mildew went nuts. The Brandywine, along with all the other tomatoes got it.
I had beheaded the tomatoes in early August, figuring that the lukewarm weather would soon be gon ... and I didn't want a bunch of small green tomatoes. I still had lots of them in my freezer from last year. Basically I wanted to get all the tomatoes in by mid Sept, around the time when frost can hit. By early October, the Brandywine had grown some new lush foliage that completely resisited the mildew and started making new tomatoes. It was quite chilly, so they never got all that big, and none ripened.
I harvested the garlic in early August, and decided to put the straggly little Brandywine backups in that bed. The one in the main tomato bed was already starting to ripen tomatoes, and was 5 ft tall, while these backups were about 14" tall ... in 3" pots! I thought what the hey ... if they don't do anything it doesn't matter. They'll keep the horseradish and the buttefly bushed company.
By August, that bed gets way less light than it does in the spring and early summer, but the Brandywines, along with some spare Sweet Milllion, Ultra Girl and San Marzanos grew desperately. By early Sept. they'd quadrupled in size and were producing tomatoes ... some of which (Sweet Million) almost ripened ... but I had to pick them for fear of frost at the end of Sept. and then some more on Sunday, a day ahead of the hard frost.
But back to the Brandywines, if you're still with me on this ramble through the tomatoes. The ones that ripened in the summer were huge, sweet, and flavourful ... though maybe a bit too juicy and mushy textured. I wonder if that wasn't from having such a wet season.
Has anyone noticed whether their tomatoes are juicier in wetter years?
So sad it's over ... I do love prime tomato time the best.