TomatoGardener
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Tomato Plant Not Growing But Has a Single Tomato

Good morning everyone.
I got a somewhat scraggly looking tomato plant at the garden store and planted it about a month ago figuring I could nurture it back to a healthier state. It flowered within a few days of planting and started making a single tomato. However, since then the plant itself has really not grown at all, although the single tomato has continued to develop. The plant is about 10 inches tall, and I planted it like all my other tomato plants, all of which are doing quite well. Would it encourage the plant itself to grow if I cut off the single tomato that's growing on it?

Thanks!

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applestar
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Location: Zone 6, NJ (3/M)4/E ~ 10/M

Re: Tomato Plant Not Growing But Has a Single Tomato

I would say yes. Under normal circumstances, the plant will take about a week to set down roots during which you may not see much movement above ground, and if it had blossoms or newly pollinated/set fruit, the plant might still divert resources into growth rather than fruit development so the blossoms/fruit might be dropped or remain undeveloped, but once the frui reaches a critical maturity point, the stress will cause the plant to try to mature the frui and seeds at cost to its own wellbeing.
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imafan26
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Location: hawaii, zone 12a 587 ft elev.

Re: Tomato Plant Not Growing But Has a Single Tomato

Since the plant was already flowering in a small pot, it was pretty old and stunted. If it was a determinate tomato it may not do a whole lot more. Even if it is an indeterminate it will probably not reach its full potential.

Unless you can keep potting up to keep any plant actively growing it will stunt. I have actually done this deliberately to papaya to keep them short and pretty much it is what you do when you are training a bonsai, you are pruning the tops and roots to control their size.

It is best when growing or buying vegetable starts that they are young and in appropriately sized pots for their age. They do not do not do well when their growth is checked.

Tomatoes are technically perennial in warm climates at any rate. If it is an indeterminate tomato, you buried it deep, in the ground or an appropriately sized pot (I use 18 gallon containers), and you have fertilized and watered enough more roots will form and the tomato may eventually start to look better and produce more fruit.

I know a few people who buy tomato starts in 4 inch pots and when I ask them how they are doing a couple of months later, they say not that good and the tomato is still in the same 4 inch pot.
Happy gardening in Hawaii. Gardens are where people grow.

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