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ID jit
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Fruits Are Splitting as They Ripen

Cherry tomatoes splitting just as they get ripe.... too much water, right?

Thanks much.
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bri80
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Re: Fruits Are Splitting as They Ripen

Usually it means too much water after a period of too little water. The cure is a steady supply of a moderate amount of water. But there are other reasons they could split, that's just the most common. Pictures could help say for sure.

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applestar
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Re: Fruits Are Splitting as They Ripen

Some varieties are known splitters, too.
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Ksk
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Re: Fruits Are Splitting as They Ripen

To prevent splitting keep tomatoes "evenly moist." This means the soil never dries out. Dry plants that are then flooded tend to split afterward. I recommend 4-5 inches of straw or similar mulch to lower temp of soil and keep moisture in the soil. You could also use soaker hoses on a timer if you need to water twice a day. In the desert I also cover tomatoes after the temperature goes over 95 degrees. Avoid any extremes for lovely ripe tomatoes! Good luck! :)
Also cherry tomatoes that are very ripe will often split when you pick them. Pick carefully to prevent this.

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applestar
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Re: Fruits Are Splitting as They Ripen

Some split while still green -- they are generally thin skinned which I like.

I harvest fruits that are not quite ripe -- about 2 days from full ripe -- and I rinse them in water at least twice before bringing them inside. That's just something I do.

Well, I discovered that some varieties that were completely fine when picked will split the moment they HIT the water. Some will split if left soaking in the water too long.
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Re: Fruits Are Splitting as They Ripen

applestar wrote:Some varieties are known splitters, too.
This has been my experience a well. None of my tomatoes have split this year with the exception of the Abraham Lincoln maters.

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Re: Fruits Are Splitting as They Ripen

Ditto KsK & bRI80.


I have a drip irrigation system and my soil never dries out. It goes on twice a day for 15 minutes each time.
I never turn off the system, even after torrential downpours, just too lazy.
But I agree that it's too much water AFTER too little water.

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KitchenGardener
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Re: Fruits Are Splitting as They Ripen

I'm gonna be right there with you, Idjit, as I left the hose on trickling water by accident ALL NIGHT last night. Of course I didn't mean to, but just turning into mush brain here. :oops:

Ksk
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Re: Fruits Are Splitting as They Ripen

One last consideration: Tomatoe roots are really deep. They grow 14 inches deep or more. A drip system used with consistency or a soaker hose will help maintain deep watering. Mulch is also the way to go. I use soaker hoses on a timer and start with twice a day watering. When the fruit starts forming I cut down to once a day to avoid "waterballoon" tomatoes with the goal of a more meaty fruit versus drippy watery fruit. Tomatoes are delicate creatures but once you find the balance it is easy to get perfect looking tomatoes. The split ones taste good but you won't win the State fair.

bri80
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Re: Fruits Are Splitting as They Ripen

Ksk wrote:One last consideration: Tomatoe roots are really deep. They grow 14 inches deep or more.
Try 4 feet or more...
https://soilandhealth.org/wp-content/upl ... 7ch26.html

On an unrelated note (to the topic of this thread, at least), I recommend everyone read through the book published for free at the link above (the link is just to the chapter on tomatoes). It might open their eye and change how they think about spacing their plants when they realize just how big vegetable roots can get!

Ksk
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Re: Fruits Are Splitting as They Ripen

Great link! I knew they were deep but did not realize the could go this deep.

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applestar
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Re: Fruits Are Splitting as They Ripen

Yeah I really like that source, too. I go back to it every year when I'm planning out my garden. It helps to think about the root space in levels, just like above-ground.

One thing to keep in mind though is just how deep they had prepared their test fields/beds with loose friable soil. In my garden, I hit nearly solid subsoil clay, though I've worked to improve soil structure and composition, and some areas are much deeper than others. Double-dug beds, Raised Row, and Raised beds help, too.
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Re: Fruits Are Splitting as They Ripen

I stand corrected, sort of

Cherokee Purple and Brandywine Red

Image

These split a bit at the top but only my Abraham Lincolns have split along the side. Time will tell.

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ID jit
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Re: Fruits Are Splitting as They Ripen

Thanks much.

Backed the sprinklers off to 15 minutes every other day. (Can't fine tune it for just the tomatoes.) Am only having trouble with the red and yellow cherry tomatoes so far.

I know the soil is at least somewhat damp/moist several inches below the surface at the driest times.

I know from past years the tomatoes throw out roots fairly deep and will reach into at least 1/3 of the garden from the side they are on. Looks to me like half the tomato plant in underground.

Cherry tomatoes splitting isn't the biggest deal to me. Mostly they get cut in half and tossed into a bowl the cuke quarters, pepper chunks some coursly chopped onions, some basil and garlic and the like and sort of marinated in herbed up oil and vinegar - sort of marinated salad with no greens.
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Gary350
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Re: Fruits Are Splitting as They Ripen

You may be leaving your tomatoes on the plant too long. Over ripe tomatoes have less flavor than tomatoes harvested a day or 2 sooner. Over ripe tomatoes will sometimes split, some varieties split worse than others.

Are all your plants producing splitting tomatoes? Sometimes you may have 1 or 2 plants among several that have problems that is why I plant more plants than I need then if I need to pull up 2 or 3 plants I still have plenty of plants left for a good crop of tomatoes.

dtizme
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Re: Fruits Are Splitting as They Ripen

I always have issues with cherry tomatoes splitting after a good rain if they were ripe and never got picked in time. If you know the rain is coming pick them before the rain comes is my best advice.

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Gary350
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Re: Fruits Are Splitting as They Ripen

ID jit wrote:Cherry tomatoes splitting just as they get ripe.... too much water, right?

Thanks much.
Try a different variety of cherry tomato see if that helps. Little splits around the top are very common is some tomatoes. Most tomatoes do very well in too much water.

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