iloveveggiesalot
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Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2009 3:10 am
Location: Morehead City, NC

Need advice for growing tomatoes :)

Hey all, I live in an area that seems to have very few bees if any, this is a coastal town. My tomato plants grow, look lush and healthy but I have not seen a bloom on even one of them. Is it the bee situation that is keeping my plants from blooming? They are in huge containers with a lot of enriched dirt, are watered properly and loved, lol. I'd would appreciate any advice or knowledge on this :)

Thank you :)
Kandice :)[/b]
Kandice :)

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Kisal
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Location: Oregon

No, the plants bloom first, then the bees come to the flowers to gather nectar and pollen. In the process, they leave a few grains of pollen on the stigma of the flower, thereby pollinating it, leading to the development of fruit.

Weather, either too hot or too cold, and the type and amount of fertilizer used are just two of several factors that can affect whether a plant blooms or not.
"Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?" - Douglas Adams

iloveveggiesalot
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Posts: 2
Joined: Tue Aug 25, 2009 3:10 am
Location: Morehead City, NC

Thank you Kisal! :) What would be the best fertilizer for tomatoes? Plus yes it's hot here and humid, but the plants are lush and green and growing nicely. Thank you so much!!!!

Kandice :)
Kandice :)

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rainbowgardener
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Location: TN/GA 7b

no tomatoes

tomatoes are self-pollinating, don't depend on bees.

Best fertilizer for tomatoes is compost. Tomatoes like a very rich organic soil. If you are going to use a synthetic fertilizer, look for one that is relatively lower in nitrogen (the N in NPK), like 5-10-10 or even higher on the PK end. Too much nitrogen can result in lush, luxuriant growth but no fruiting.

Temps over 85 or 90 and especially high night time temps can keep tomatoes from setting fruit (though I think you would still be seeing flowers unless the plants were just burning up):

"Temperature and Humidity. Daytime temperatures above 90°F and night temperatures above 70°F result in reduced flowering and fruit set. There is considerable evidence that night temperature is the critical factor in setting tomato fruit, the optimal range being 59° to 68°F. With night temperatures much below or above this critical range, fruiting is reduced or absent." https://pubs.ext.vt.edu/426/426-418/426-418.html

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hendi_alex
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Even when temperatures are too hot, you still have blooms, they just drop. I would think that an absence of blooms would relate to too much nitrogen or too little light. Perhaps it could be a combination of both. Occasionally you might get an individual plant that just does't set many blooms, but I'm leaning toward the first two reasons as the main cause of the problem.

Sometimes my brandywine plants are very slow to bloom, have very sparce bloom even after they begin blooming, and also have limited fruit set as well. Other than the brandywine, have not really noticed any other variety with that habit.
Eclectic gardening style, drawing from 45 years of interest and experience. Mostly plant in raised beds and containers primarily using intensive gardening techniques.
Alex

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