lily51
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Anyone having a bumper crop of tomatoes?

This year has been hot and dry like so many places, but through watering and a few well-timed rains, we have more tomatoes than ever. Many others I've talked to are having the same experience.
Tomorrow will be the fourth large harvest of the summer, not to mention all the ones eaten day by day.
I'm so happy because they all were started in our greenhouse, and people I've given plants to are having great success, also

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gixxerific
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My plants did amazingly well considering the heat. but like MG mine have went on vacation but the blooms are coming back and thick like in teh spring. Hoping to get a second bumper crop if even they are smaller than the first round.

gardenboy
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Bumper Crop for sure!!

Had the best season so far Sept. 2011 to May 2012. Only a few hornworms to worry about but a little more stinkbugs than normal..other than that was real good. I had so many tomatoes that I had to start giving them away to local mom/pop restaurants. The "Black" varieties were very good this year also..The Black from Tula and Chinese Purple were just so pretty I hated cutting into them. Anyway, anxious to start my Sept 2012 season. I have a lot of seeds to swap if anyone is interested in some. Happy Gardening!!!

gumbo2176
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I'm jealous. My tomato crop started out looking like it was going to be a bumper crop but this was a horrible year for pests and disease. Here in SE Louisiana we had such a mild winter in 2011 that I believe it actually helped the bad things come back with a vendetta to make our life miserable in the spring. I'm sure I threw away at least twice as many tomatoes as I harvested this year. I'm hoping for better results this fall with my early crop going in as soon as the rain stops long enough to work my soil.

lily51
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Gumbo, I think you're right about mild winters creating problems the following spring if conditions are favorable. Due to our very dry, hot year some pests like tomato worm didn't show up, but the two-spot spider mite on soybeans did.
Hope you miss the storm headed to the gulf.

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digitS'
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Congratulations on your bumper harvests, Lily51. It is really wonderful when everything just all seems to jive.

This was not too unusual of a growing season here and I'm happy to have some nice ripe beefsteaks finally coming in! My season is probably much like n8young's there in Maine. The cherries have been producing all month, then the plums, now the beefsteaks. Well, I say "now" but I've only had 1, there are 5 more picked today but I'll give them a day or 2 in the basket. By then, I bet there are a couple more out there!

Out of 20+ varieties, Casey's Pure Yellow had the 1st fruit that was over 8 ounces. This is the 1st year for that variety in my garden. Casey is Jeff Casey in Calgary. He calls it a "mid-season" but it came right in with those that are often rated as 70-day tomatoes. The plants are fairly small, perhaps stunted a bit by our cool June but the poor things are loaded with lovely tomatoes.

A little guy that I'm enjoying having in the garden again this year is Woodle's Orange. There again, the plants are simply loaded.

I wish I could say that about all of the varieties. Big Beef will be the most productive because the plants are large and there is a fair number of fruits on each. That cool June, no doubt, limited the number of flowers that set fruit. Altho' they've been at it for weeks now, I can't even really say that the cherries will be very productive. The plants are big and healthy but that hasn't translated into an outstanding year for them.

All in all, I'm real happy that they all seem to be coming into maturity. Red, orange, pink, or yellow they are getting there! And, because they are all indeterminates - there's a chance of more fruit setting . . !

Steve
hoping for a warm September and no frost . . .
We are each other's harvest; we are each other's business; we are each other's magnitude and bond. ~ Gwendolyn Brooks

lily51
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I have to say thanks to my husband for this year's great garden. Good weather allowed him to have time once garden season got here to help.
He's been dedicated to suckering the tomatoes, staking and trellising plants and watering in this very dry year. And it's been nice just to share more time out there, too.

striperbware
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I am weighing every bag full that I get this year. I put 45 Big Boy plants in. The weather here in the Hudson Valley, NY has been nothing out of the ordinary, so in other words PERFECT for growing maters.

My haul so far is 270 pounds. Lots of growing time left, so I expect to get to the 350 mark by the end.

:lol: 8) :shock: :D :o
Old-school gardener who will never stop learning !

dustyrivergardens
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I grow tomatoes in two garden spots 40 miles apart one is doing good average at best a little behind last year which was a good year for that garden. My other garden well last year was awesome a very good year and this year is unbelievable it is really looking good record crops on peppers and tomatoes. :D

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gixxerific
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Good to hear Stripedbear and dusty. Hard to belive it but it has been a good year.

Hopefully next year won't be 1000 degrees every day. I did like the low humidity this year. That was a plus.

Good luck to everyone next year. It's winding down here but the fall setting is still ahead.

It aint over till the the fat lady gets the tiller out! :lol:

Thomas CA
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I'm having the best growing year yet. Not sure about a bumper crop, but my San Marzanos have been putting out 40-50 lbs a week since the end of July. Before that, I was only pulling a colander's worth twice a week for fresh sauce. I think the recent heat wave really kicked them into gear.

There's 16 plants total, not all shown, down the side of the house (4 of them are volunteers I let go, vining on the ground below-and producing just as well). I haven't suckered them, and only trim where I need to get in. They're over 7 feet tall and everywhere. I love it.

I've been a canning fool!

[img]https://img641.imageshack.us/img641/2812/dsc04386z.jpg[/img]
[/img]

lily51
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Wow thomas, that's a tomato forest!
I harvested a bit less than a bushel again today, made spaghetti sauce with a friend who has one of those powerful juicers that just pulverizes everything.
It's probably the last large harvest, but it's been a great year for tomatoes.

Hate to think summers drawing to an end...

Smallgardener
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Mater here have been few and far between. Got some early in July and then they went on vacation. I did pick one or twe per week through the summer off of the Bloddy butcher, mortgage lifter, and Arkansas traveler. Now I have cherry maters out the wazoo. Cooler weather has allowed mater to set on so I will be picking late maters.

MaryDel
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I'm starting to get a load from my san marzanos now that the temps have dropped. I've been picking about a 5 gallon bucket every other day and they really are just starting to come on. I have a ton of large green ones too.


My indeterminates all got about 8' tall this year. Pretty good for the first garden at my new house. All I added to the soil was 10-10-10 and agricultural gypsum at planting time.

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mtmickey
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Got a LOT of green tomatoes and hoping I get to harvest them red and fresh, but who knows...one person's garden just south of here has already frozen once this year. We actually just picked our first two red ripe tomatoes a few hours ago...a few others are blushing at the moment, so soon. We'll see how the weather cooperates, suppose to be nice and cooler the next week or so, AND no freezing in the forecast. :D

Ohio Tiller
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Oh God yes I have canned pizza sauce, tomato soup, salsa, we have made and canned tomato juice and stewed tomatoes.
We are at the point now where we are just giving them away!
I have 7 plants right now that are just covered with tomatoes.

One of them I got from my Aunt in IN that grows tomatoes bigger than softballs. It has 60 on it right now all green and as big as hardballs. When they turn red I plan on making a big batch of tomato soup to can and that should be all the canning I do this year.

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applestar
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My tomatoes are very unhappy this year. The cherries are doing great And I've feozen a few bagsfull. but the other varieties are plodding along -- just enough for fresh eating and cooking in meals. The thing is, I had initially blamed it on the weather, but it occurred to me that I started the tomato seeds differently this spring than any other year:

(1) I ONLY used store bought -- albeit premium-- organic potting soil
(2) I raised them all from start to finish inside (62°F or above) instead of my normal practice to put them in the cold unheated garage where the daytime temp maybe in the lower 40's at most, sometimes dipping into lower 30's and as low as 28°F (seedlings growing area is protected with bubble wrap and plastic sheeting)

I wonder if those two differences had anything to do with the tomatoes' performance this year. :?

lily51
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Applestar--you can do comparison growing next year, some like your standard method, some varying. Of course, then there's that variable of weather we can't control. Still it would be interesting.

btrowe1
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Been one of the best years that I can remember, Sad to say that with so many in major drought conditions.
So far I've been able to freeze close to 10 gallon size bags of cored tomatoes, 6 quart jars of sauce. 12 pint size jars of stewed tomatoes, 4 plastic containers of salsa, 2 quart jars of dehydrated. And I still have more on the vines and ripening in the house.. and we"ve given lots away to friends that didn't have as much luck with their gardens.

Very good year..

MaryDel
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[img]https://i769.photobucket.com/albums/xx337/Flatfeesh/DSCN1255.jpg[/img]


I am still picking San Marzanos by the bucket load.

MaryDel
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Wow, I can't believe how many tomatoes I am getting. I just picked 8 more gallons, mostly San Marzanos and a few unidentified heirloom varieties that are carbon copies of each other. I've been cooking up sauce every other night.


I wish I knew what this other tomato was. It's a keeper whatever it is. The only other tomato I've grown that is so perfect and crack free is the rutgers, which I used to make sauce from but don't have too much use for since I found the San Marzanos.

I've made pizza sauce, spaghetti sauce, meatball sauce and barbecue sauce.
I'm quickly running out of room in my small stand up chest freezer.


With the price of food going up almost 20% in the last 4 years, it's silly not to grow what you need if you have the room.


[img]https://i769.photobucket.com/albums/xx337/Flatfeesh/dawgandmaters002.jpg[/img]


and here's a picture of my Labrador/German Shepard/St. Bernard/English Springer Spaniel who likes to steal my tomatoes.....she's 90 lbs of spring loaded energy :roll:


[img]https://i769.photobucket.com/albums/xx337/Flatfeesh/dawgandmaters001.jpg[/img]

lily51
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Marydel...great looking tomatoes. Sounds like u have been busy in a fun sort of way. Your lab makes me miss our Gabby, a true tomato lover herself!

MaryDel
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Marlingardener wrote:Well Marydel, I envy you both your tomato harvest, and your 90 lbs. of loving puppy! I haven't had any luck with San Marzanos, but your photos and descriptions have inspired me to try them again next season.
Do you have any hints/advice for someone who really really wants paste tomatoes?
I have found that SMs don't like the heat. Unlike other tomatoes they will actually still set fruit when it's hot but then they start rotting when about 2" long and fall off.

In Texas you may be out of luck, but you could try shade cloth or plant them in a partially shaded area to try to keep them cool, or maybe plant them later in the summer for a fall crop. There may also be some other paste varieties that tolerate heat better.

I'm just a beginner at growing paste tomatoes.






Lily51, all labs are special dogs, I currently have two, but only one tomato lover....

Thomas CA
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Still getting tons of San Marzanos off my plants. I've canned about 70 quarts whole, 11 pints of prepared sauce and have frozen about a gallon of prepared sauce.

I'm just wondering when they're going to give up, as I have seedlings that will be ready for the spot in the near future!

[img]https://imageshack.us/a/img571/9264/dsc04396n.jpg[/img]

lily51
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It's great reading all of the replies to get ideas for new varieties for next year. (never too early to start planning)

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ReptileAddiction
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Mine were horrible this year. :( They just grew soooo slow and most of the buds never set fruit. The only variety I had was yellow pear. I got about 15 fruits. About a week ago I decided it wasn't worth the space anymore so I chopped it up and threw it in my compost.

Ohio Tiller
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Thomas CA wrote:Still getting tons of San Marzanos off my plants. I've canned about 70 quarts whole, 11 pints of prepared sauce and have frozen about a gallon of prepared sauce.

I'm just wondering when they're going to give up, as I have seedlings that will be ready for the spot in the near future!

[img]https://imageshack.us/a/img571/9264/dsc04396n.jpg[/img]


Best tomato soup you will ever eat! Just add milk or cream when you prepare it to eat.

CANNED TOMATO SOUP

32 c. (10 qts.) tomato juice
1 1/2 c. sugar
2 tbsp. canning salt
1/8 tsp. pepper
4 tsp. onion flakes
4 tsp. garlic powder
Combine all ingredients and heat. Melt 1 pound butter in saucepan. Remove from heat and add 2 cups of flour with added juice for a smooth blend. Mix into juice, stirring as it comes to a boil. Pour into jars. Process quarts 30 minutes, pints 15 minutes in hot water bath. Makes 20 to 21 pints a recipe.

mattie g
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Location: Northern VA, USA -- Zone 7a

I've had quite a nice harvest this year. Things really slowed down in late-July/August due to the heat, but I'm getting a nice late crop coming in now. With about 45 days of growing season (on average) left, I should be pulling them in for quite a while longer. Educated guess would put my total haul at well over 100 lbs. from my ten plants (two SMs, one ridiculous volunteer Roma, two Brandywines, two Cherokee Purples, two Valencias, and one Mortgage Lifter). I've made a total of ten pints of salsa and many sauces, and I've been coring/seeding and freezing the rest for use this coming winter and spring.

The big problem I've had is that in the last month or so, I've had a lot of tomatoes with splits and cracks that haven't been ripening very well around the blemishes. And my paste tomatoes have recently not been fully ripening on the tops - probably the top 1/4 or so have been wrinkling up and not ripening thoroughly. I didn't have either problem earlier in the season. It's not a huge issue, but I do lose quite a bit to my compost bin because of it.

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