lives4huntin
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Best way to ripen tomatoes

I just pulled about 100 green tomatoes from our plant. We would have left them go longer, but snow is in the forecast for tonight and the next few days. What is the preferred or best method to ripen these tomatoes?

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hendi_alex
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I just leave mine on a table in a well lit room and they usually ripen without a problem. Years ago I used to wrap mine in newspaper and space them apart in a cardboard box. That method seems a little tedious though. I've never tried it before, but supposedly if you place a few green tomatoes in a paper bag with a ripe apple, the ethylene gas from the apple will speed the ripening of the tomatoes. That would make for a nice experiment, why not do two bags, one with the apple and one without.

Snow? Thank goodness I'm in S.C. With luck we won't see frost before the third week in November, though it sometimes comes as early as the third week in October. Been too long since we saw a real snow, more than a dusting. Snow is pretty nice down here. It can snow six or eight inches and is gone a day or two later and might even be 60 degrees by then.
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Diane
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I've had great luck with putting a few apples in a bowl with a bunch of green tomatoes. And then put that into a plastic bag and tie it shut.

I take them out once they have some orange in them, usually a few days later, and they ripen quickly on my counter.

My new thing is putting the apples and tomatoes into a plastic coffee container with a lid.
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lives4huntin
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Thanks for the input. Low eighties today. High for tommorrow might be forty. Nine motnths of winter, two days of spring, six weeks of summer, three days of fall, then back to the snow.
Don't know why people keep moving to Montana.

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Diane
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Ouch, your weather is worse than ours. We might have our first frost thursday night.
Then I'll be in the garden picking every green tomato I have. :cry:

Did you move there?
I always wonder about the states where the snow can pile up to your door. How do you manage it?
We get plenty of snow and it does go up the stairs to the bottom of our doors. But goes no farther, usually.
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gixxerific
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I have some small green tom's out there still. I think I will try the experiment with the bags and and apple and one without. I was going to pull them tomorrow anyways. They haven't moved in weeks.

I think I'll even take pics of the process

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SP8
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I’ve hurried up the ripening process of some tomatoes in a bowl with a very ripe apple before with great success but I’m wondering if the hanging up a very ripe apple on my plant while the tomatoes are still on the plant will also speed up the ripening process.

Any thoughts?
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rainbowgardener
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I wouldn't think it would make any difference unless you also covered the plant with something to hold the ethylene in. Otherwise it would quickly dissipate. And covering the plant creates other problems, blocks out light if you use something opaque, holds in moisture creating fungal issues, blocks transpiration.....

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gixxerific
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I was just reading a book about companion planting. There was a passage about Dandelions. It seems they give off high amounts of ethylene. It went on to say that this a one way to spur plants on to produce when planted in the vicinity. It also stated that after the initial boost that the plant in question would slow down considerably after maturity.

So maybe not a god idea. I'm not 100% on this. You could always pick some fruit and put them in a bag. I have also read that bananas are better to use for such purposes.

This method can also be a bad thing. Tomatoes, bananas, apples are all realted though very distantly. They use ethylene in the air to ripen and as they ripen they produce ethylene at greater rates as they ripen. Using a bag will trap the gas and they will all ripen too quickly.

Ever heard the saying "One bad apple spoils the bunch"?

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pharmerphil
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before moving to Minnesota, I had an old 4 drawer dresser I would put the greenies in, close but not touching each other and they'd ripen fine, I'd put the ones closer to ripening in the top slot...then just move the drawers up as they ripened. Always had a slicer for Thanksgiving doing this...sometimes Christmas

left the old dresser in Missouri, now we just put them on a large table in the basement to ripen, they do fine.
Apples do work, sometimes too well ...
and they ripen too fast and are tasteless. (in most cases though they are STILL superior to store bought)

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