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jennsim
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Joined: Fri Oct 08, 2010 11:18 am
Location: Queensland Australia

A welcome glutton

G'day all,

From last year having no tom's on my plate, to a welcome glutton
this year and all from volunteer plants, there are 4 different tom's
varieties in this picture, unsure how many plants all grown from my
compost. Large and small Roma types, very tasty...and two round
shaped large and tiny ones, the larger one isn't as flavoursome as
the others, but I'm not complaining, there all great!

[img]https://i1096.photobucket.com/albums/g333/jennsim/VolunteerToms.jpg[/img]

[img]https://i1096.photobucket.com/albums/g333/jennsim/Aromatheropy.jpg[/img]

jenn

tedln
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Posts: 2178
Joined: Thu Jun 25, 2009 10:06 pm
Location: North Texas

Jenn,

What caused such a difference between last years crop and this years volunteer crop?

Ted
I simply enjoy gardening!

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jennsim
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Posts: 30
Joined: Fri Oct 08, 2010 11:18 am
Location: Queensland Australia

G'day Ted,
Last year I tried 4 heirloom varieties grown in 2 foot cylinders, one plant
to each tub.....the beefsteak and tiny tom did get a few fruit on each, not
worth eating though, and we were at the end of the drought which seemed
to be going on for years here. They did get ants nesting in the tubs too.

This year, I spread out my home made compost and grass clippings
around the "mini fruit orchard" and in August they (the volunteer plants)
popped up, have also planted some grosse lisse which are not doing very
well.

So planting straight in the ground here seems to be the way to go, and
I will be saving the seeds cause they are soooo delish! and the only toms
I've had success with......can't believe how nice they are and so fresh!
Or I could just sit back after putting more compost out and wait with my
plate. :D

The drought is well and truely over here now, tonights news, the south
east Queensland dams are overflowing and have enough drinking water
to last 10 years!! Our 2 tanks are overflowing :) Have had flash flooding
in the region over the weekend, saw the sun today, I braved the yard to
get these nice pickings today,

[img]https://i1096.photobucket.com/albums/g333/jennsim/toms12thOct2010.jpg[/img]
I'm thinking of drying some of the little ones, have purchased
dried in the past, but they were overpowered with too much garlic, have
seen a post here on drying, will let you know how I go.

jenn

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digitS'
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Joined: Sun Sep 26, 2010 5:10 pm
Location: ID/Wa! border

Tropics . . :roll:

Let's see. It is mid-October so in Australia, so we are only 6 weeks into spring . . :shock: !!

Well, anyway. Congratulations on this success with volunteers! And, Best of Luck as you sort things out for many more successful growing season, Jenn!

I grow only early or early-midseason varieties. Leaving volunteers hasn't worked well at all for me. Sometimes, the plants can ripen 1 or 2 tomatoes just days before 1st frost.

I did grow a small Russian variety one year that volunteered the 2nd season with quite a few ripe fruits! Unfortunately, the plants were so vulnerable to early blight that it still wasn't worth keeping that one!

Steve

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jennsim
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Posts: 30
Joined: Fri Oct 08, 2010 11:18 am
Location: Queensland Australia

Thanks for the reply Steve, hope you have better luck next time.
I'm in the sub-tropics here :wink:

Just updating on the dehydrating!!! Purchased a dehydrator (cheap one)
in February this year....been sitting in it's box all this time, waiting for
cherry season...love dried cherries :D so sticky and sweeeeet!
Anywho found the dehydrating thread in the recipe section, thanks to
LindsayArthurRTR and Ozark Lady for all the info! :D
https://www.helpfulgardener.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=28171

So here is my first attempt results,

[img]https://i1096.photobucket.com/albums/g333/jennsim/dehydratingtoms11pm12thOct2010.jpg[/img] Loading trays 11pm 12th Oct
[img]https://i1096.photobucket.com/albums/g333/jennsim/dehydrating13thOct.jpg[/img] Moving trays 9am 13th Oct
[img]https://i1096.photobucket.com/albums/g333/jennsim/dryedtoms14thOct2010.jpg[/img] Final product! Morning of the 14th Oct. Did finish drying last night.
Flavour is so intense, will be adding these to pasta bakes etc.
Would really love to try canning, will have to grow a lot more toms for this. :wink:

jenn
ps did move the trays every 3 to 4 hours as LindsayArthurRTR suggested
in other thread.

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digitS'
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Joined: Sun Sep 26, 2010 5:10 pm
Location: ID/Wa! border

It all looks real good to me, Jenn! I think you are inspiring me to dry some tomatoes out of this basket of "greenies" as they ripen. Everything that looked like it would have a chance, came out of the garden just before the first frost.

No, I'd have to carry my volunteer plants a few degrees of latitude south each spring to have better luck. Starting the plants early indoors and setting them out will just have to remain the norm here, otherwise.

Dad found a volunteer in his garden about 10 years ago. Being the kind of person he is, he left it and we watched to see how it would do. During the last few days of the season, the plant ripened 4 or 5 fruits! They were obviously from Sweet Chelsea, which he had in his garden the previous year and which I still grow regularly.

I was delighted since Sweet Chelsea is a hybrid but this plant was producing fruits that looked just the same! Dad was disappointed. He, apparently, was expecting something really different. Just shows the difference in our personalities. The only problem, I never thought to grab one of the fruits and save the seed to see if it would perform as well the following season :? .

Steve

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