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Francis Barnswallow
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Tomato plants FINALLY creating tomatoes

After 7 months of blossom drops, the tomato plants are finally exploding with new blossoms and tomatos.....*is excited*. We have temps in the upper 60's and 70's. Might even be the upper 40's on Friday morning. I'm lovin' it and apparently my tomato plants would agree.

Should I just not plant tomato plants until the Florida heat is over? If so, what grows well in 100+ degree heat index?

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lorax
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There are certain tomato cultivars that also survive the 100+ heat - look for the South American cultivars - Fresa de Loja is a standout, as are Chonto Santa Cruz and Wantia. Or ask me nicely - I've been adapting cool-climate types for high heat.....

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gixxerific
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Lorax is very right. I try to plant a few high heat tolerant plants myself. During the summer my tomatos normally shut down than come back. Of course my shutdown period is not as long as yours. Lorax is hot all year round so she knows what she is talking about when it comes to growing in the heat.

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rainbowgardener
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Yeah, it finally got cool enough down there for your tomatoes. Like Mg said, you Southern gardeners really shouldn't figure on tomatoes in the summer (unless specially bred for it like, lorax said). Not only do they not like that much heat, but there's lots more bugs around and the heat stress (especially humid heat in FLA) makes them very vulnerable to diseases and pests. Next year think about what Mg said and do two tomato crops. Start one in Jan for spring/ early summer crop and one in Aug for fall/ early winter crop and grow something tropical in the summer.
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gixxerific
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rainbowgardener wrote:Yeah, it finally got cool enough down there for your tomatoes. Like Mg said, you Southern gardeners really shouldn't figure on tomatoes in the summer (unless specially bred for it like, lorax said). Not only do they not like that much heat, but there's lots more bugs around and the heat stress (especially humid heat in FLA) makes them very vulnerable to diseases and pests. Next year think about what Mg said and do two tomato crops. Start one in Jan for spring/ early summer crop and one in Aug for fall/ early winter crop and grow something tropical in the summer.
Fall crop tomatoes are only a dream for me. FB you need to get on that train. You have the waehter for it. I however do not, like Rainbow when it's over it's over. You have another chance take it and run with it. :wink:

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TheWaterbug
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I did get some summer tomatoes (lots of Romas and a fair number of Cherokee Purples), but few Black Prince and almost no Mr. Stripeys.

I'd pretty much written them off for the year, and this morning I noticed a bunch of blossoms on my Cherokees. Maybe I'll get a fall crop, too. I'd love that, as the Cherokees ended being my favorite by a large margin.

My Stripey plant is still growing tons of foliage, but there are no blossoms, and there hasn't been much fruit at all. I never fertilized it, so it can't be over-fertilizing. Is there something I can feed it to induce fruiting?

I got tons of Romas, but I didn't really like them that much.
Sunset 23/USDA 11a, Elev. 783', Frost free since 8,000 BC. Plagued by squirrels, gophers, and peafowl, but coming to terms with it!

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gixxerific
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You need potasium for fruiting.

My tamatoes came back in the fall. But when I as talking about a fall crop. I meant planting another set during the summer for growth in the fall.

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Tilde
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Yah, I had no summer tomatoes - too darn hot. What I might try are summer tomatoes indoors next year. For now I'm counting the flowers and greeting the flutterbyes and dragonflies ...
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carolyn137
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Most of my friends who live in FL do two crops a year and I first heard about this many years ago from Linda Sapp who owns Tomato Growers Supply Co in Fort Myers, FL. It also obtains for those who live in zones maybe 8b to 10. BTW TGS is ab excellent place to get OP's and hybrids both and she knows Drl Scott ( see below) very well.

Seeds for the Spring crop are sowed between Xmas and the first part of January and plants set out in late Feb to early March so that fruit set and ripening occurs before the high heat sets in.

The Spring crop should be mid season and late season varieties.

Seeds for the Fall crop are sowed around mid-August or so and plants set out late September. These should be early and midseason varieties.

It isn't just the high heat that causes blossom drop but also clumped pollen from sustained high humidity, which is much less effective, so it's kind of a double whammy, if you will.

Some let their Spring crop plants get thru the summer by babying them, as mentioned above, with the hope that with cooler weather they'll start producing again but most of my tomato FL friends yank them out in preparation of the Fall crop.

What I enjoy the most are the fresh tomatoes that a few send up to me here in the tundra for Xmas/ :D

Dr. Jay Scott at the U of FL has developed some varieties that are supposed to do OK in FL summertime, and if you contact your nearest Cooperative Extension I'm sure they could give you some suggestions.

Hope that helps.

Carolyn

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Avonnow
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Hello Francis

Sherry from merrit island, Hey on the tomatoes I do two crops one in spring, and this year one I started in September here, but the fall one I bought the plants, the summer is even too hard for me to get seeds to grow properly. I am just getting tomatoes off two hybrids I got from ACE and the rest are starting to form small tomatoes. One thing about next spring, if you plant your own seeds you may want to start right after Xmas, last year I started in January and it seems like the heat got here to fast - I'm starting them right after the holiday his year . I got a lot of tomatoes - but not as well as I had hoped. Also if you want something to grow in the heat, eggplant - I have had great luck with ichaban eggplant, but like okra you have to like it. :wink:
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Francis Barnswallow
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Re: Hello Francis

Avonnow wrote:Sherry from merrit island, Hey on the tomatoes I do two crops one in spring, and this year one I started in September here, but the fall one I bought the plants, the summer is even too hard for me to get seeds to grow properly. I am just getting tomatoes off two hybrids I got from ACE and the rest are starting to form small tomatoes. One thing about next spring, if you plant your own seeds you may want to start right after Xmas, last year I started in January and it seems like the heat got here to fast - I'm starting them right after the holiday his year . I got a lot of tomatoes - but not as well as I had hoped. Also if you want something to grow in the heat, eggplant - I have had great luck with ichaban eggplant, but like okra you have to like it. :wink:
Yeah the heat came waaaayyy too early this year. Heat in mid February.........not fair.

I'm going to plant around those times you posted. Even my hybrids (heat tolerant) didn't do much over the summer. No more late spring tomato planting for this guy.....way to much work with little results.

Still have caterpillar issues though. And these ones seem to have excellent eyesight because if my finger gets near them they start biting at it. And I've been bit twice so far. They are about 2 inches long (the biggest I've seen so far), light green and move just like an inch worm.

Very agile nasty little buggers.



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