Most perplexing. For years we have always had no problem growing really
nice tomatoes. Two years ago we changed the physical location of our
garden to accommodate new landscaping. The vegetable garden did just
fine in it's new location except for the tomatoe plants. They grew fine
but just as the flowers started to open, they would fall off. We saw no
indication of any insects. Someone suggested that we had a virus in the
ground so we pulled up the plants, turned the ground, and then covered
it up with black tarp for the entire summer season. The idea was to
"naturally" sterilize the ground. This season, we dug out the area in
two circles, removed the soil and mixed in fresh planter mix with other
garden soil, and the enclosed the circular area with bender board. Each
circle was planted with healthy (assumingly so) starter plants. They
are growing quite nicely but as soon as the flowers start to open, they
fall off. Ideas and suggestions would be most appreciated. Thanks.
On Thu, 11 May 2006 17:09:14 -0700, Otto Pylot
You don't say where you are, but around here in South Carolina,
the temperatures have fluctuated quite a bit this spring. I'm
surprised any of the tomatoes have set fruit at all.
You have proven yourself to be the most malicious,
classless person that I've encountered in years.
What growing zone are you in? Have you had a soil analysis?
Have you fertilized with anything?
Way to many unanswered questions to make a call. Bottom line
is that your plants don't "think" that they are
healthy/mature enough to sustain fruit. Why? Don't know. Too
many questions that are unknowns at this point.
Barring soil problems then I'd "guess" that your plants just
aren't mature enough to support fruit yet. They know when
I put composted cow sh*t in every year and 'till it into the
soil. That seems to help a lot. But still, if it's too
early, the flowers drop.
I'm over here in Los Banos and my tomatoes have suffered from blossom
drop for the last 3 years. I have no idea why. Some say the heat but
they grow commercial tomatoes around here and my first year of growing
them was just great. There seem to be a goodly number of possible
reasons. Anyway, this year I've moved my tomatoes - about 8 blocks
from here to my gentleman friend's back yard. They are just starting
to blossom so it's too early to tell what's going to happen.
I am on the side of those who blame heat. Some of the plant
hardiness zones here in Canada have been changed to reflect
global warming (the last frost date has been moved forward by a
week locally--near Ottawa).
You might try to buy a plant or two that are normally grown in
the deep south and see if these plants are able to set fruit.
Different types of tomatoes are able to tolerate more heat than
others. How are your neighbours' tomatoes?
As an aside...
I have a friend who lives in Kenya (right on the equator). There
is only one type of tomato that will grow in the country and that
only at high altitude.
The tomato growing season has already passed for those who live
I would go with a date later than May 6. May 6 is AVERAGE date
of last frost. The farmers in my area are planting as early May
17, where May 24 used to be the accepted date. Department of
Agriculture points their finger at global warming. I looked up
their address a couple of years ago and they seemed pleased to
answer a question from a mere gardener, they even changed their
web site as a result of my question! <immodest blush>
Canada Zone 5a
United States Zone 3a
On Sat, 13 May 2006 15:07:41 -0400, Garden Gnome
Ah, Hogtown. <grin> I am near the real hot air in Ottawa
We had a prolonged period when daily temperatures were around
30ēC and my tomatoes were okay. Do you recall the temperature
Canada Zone 5a
United States Zone 3a
I assume that anyone I know that grows tomatoes grows the same
varieties that I do, but we've never compared notes. The thing is
that one would think that the tomatoes wouldn't be for sale around
here if they aren't going to grow around here. Of course, Wal*Mart
may not care. I have pretty good luck with the Sweet 100s but what I
like to do is can which requires a lot of the medium or large sized
fruit. My first year I was able to do this. I'm growing the same
varieties - Beefsteak and Celebrity as well as the 100s. I don't have
a lot of space so only have 8 plants. I'm just hoping that things
work out better this year but I sure do have bug problems I've not had
before. Will save that for a separate thread.
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