Wednesday, July 7, 2010

I'm worried about my tomatoes.

My tomato plants have been growing for two months, and although they appear robust and healthy, I haven't seen the first sign of a tomato.

I asked Keith Forrester of Whitton Farms (I see him every Wednesday when I pick up my CSA) about the lackluster fruit, and he blamed the hot nights. "When the nights stay this hot, the blooms just dry up," he said.

Great. That wasn't what I wanted to hear, so I checked out my plants this evening to prove him wrong. No luck. Some of the blooms are brown and shriveled. Others near the top of the plants still look beautiful, so I decided to amp up my watering. I don't know if more water will make a difference, but it's something to try.

Here's the good news: My tomatillo plants (the second photo) have formed tiny, tiny tomatillos from the plant's blooms. I love that the blooms aren't bothered at all by this summer's temperatures, unusually hot, even for Memphis.

Lesson learned: In the mid-South, plant tomatoes early so they form their fruit before the heat settles in. Better yet: Plant more tomatillos than tomatoes.


  1. I can totally hear Keith saying that in his super-country, super-loud voice!

  2. I know! He takes me to school on all my gardening questions. Once I asked him about companion planting. He rolled his eyes and said, "Pam, that answer comes from a lifetime of farming."