Wednesday 23 July 2014

Tomatoes - will there be a late rally?

The other day I wrote about my decision not to remove the sideshoots of my tomato plants in the hope that they might be able to produce some more fruit. Well, the plan seems to be working out...
Here you can see one of the new sideshoots at the left, tied with string to the old main stem and its supporting cane. The leaves on the new shoot look much more normal and best of all, tucked in there amongst them is a flower and a tiny fruit.

I have used the same technique wherever there is a viable new shoot.

This "Yanni's" plant with two strong sideshoots sporting a fair few flowers looks promising.

Taken from a different angle, this photo shows the existing truss of fruits rather better. Up till now I thought this would be the only truss this plant would produce.

Meanwhile, lower down... This is "Larisa".

If just one of those huge fruits would ripen without rotting I'd be reasonably happy!

Likewise with these "Dinnye":

This is one of the "Japanese Purple" ones, though it has yet to show its true colour.

And this rugged monster is "Cherokee Purple".

But this is what I really want:

Well, actually I want twenty times that amount! They are "Maskotka".

Maskotka is an untidy, trailing type at the best of times - probably best in a big tall tub so that it can cascade downwards. But what it lacks in looks is amply made up for in terms of yield and flavour. This year it has earned more credit in my book by being the least affected by the compost contamination problem. Having said that, the plants are much smaller than I would expect, and there are far fewer fruit trusses than I normally get.


  1. I really miss not having my own tomatoes this year. I would have thought it would be a great year for them so it's strange that you don't have as many fruits.

  2. Nature finds a way. Fascinating.

  3. My Maskotka plants are laden with fruit and they're the only plants which have ripe fruit at the moment, though they were bought in and not grown from seed so that could be why they ahead of my other plants.

  4. The tomatoes are indeed looking promising, if they could just ripen for you without splitting or rotting. That Cherokee Purple is an impressive but ugly tomato, hope you get to taste it. I have a lot of trouble with Cherokee Purple cat-facing like that It seems to be prone to it, although one cause listed is accidental exposure to herbicides.

  5. I hope they ripen up in time for you.

  6. Growing tomatoes I like the idea that you can manipulate the amount of harvest. You can either have fewer but bigger fruits or more but smaller ones :)

    This year I'm growing Maskotka too, and the similar one Gartenperle, they both have lots of green tomatoes, I can't wait to taste them!

  7. I do hope you get a late rally. It looks promising. I think I'd miss tomatoes most of all the crops. I often let side shoots grow and fruit. Mine are in a greenhouse though so ripening is easier. They become a proper jungle but go on fruiting til early autumn.

  8. It looks promising to me, too. Hope you have more than enough!

  9. Well done for thinking round the problem, Mark - It looks like you'll get a few tomatoes after all. Fingers crossed for you!

  10. The poor leaves are still struggling aren't they?


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