HOW TO HARVEST TOMATOES
Leave your tomatoes on the vine as long as possible. If any fall off before they appear ripe, place them in a paper bag with the stem up and store them in a cool, dark place.
Never place tomatoes on a sunny windowsill to ripen; they may rot before they are ripe!
The perfect tomato for picking will be firm and very red in color, regardless of size, with perhaps some yellow remaining around the stem. If you grow orange, yellow or any other color tomato, wait for the tomato to turn the correct color.
If your tomato plant still has fruit when the first hard frost threatens, pull up the entire plant and hang it upside down in the basement or garage. Pick tomatoes as they ripen.
If temperatures start to drop and your tomatoes aren’t ripening, watch this video for tips.
You can harvest seeds from some tomato varieties. Learn how here.
HOW TO STORE TOMATOES
Never refrigerate fresh tomatoes. Doing so spoils the flavor and texture that make up that garden tomato taste.
To freeze, core fresh unblemished tomatoes and place them whole in freezer bags or containers. Seal, label, and freeze. The skins will slip off when they defrost.
See RECOMMENDED VARIETIES
Tomatoes grow in many sizes, from tiny “currant” to “cherry” to large “beefsteak.” What’s most important is to look for disease-resistant cultivars whenever possible. Many modern cultivars have resistance to Verticillium wilt, Fusarium wilt, and root knot nematodes. Cultivars with such resistance are denoted as such by the letters V, F, and N following the cultivar name
Here are a few of our favorite varieties of tomatoes:
Early Varieties (60 or fewer days to harvest)
Early-maturing cultivars such as Early Girl may be slightly less flavorful but will produce fruit 2 to 3 weeks earlier than mid or late-season cultivars.
‘Early Cascade’: trailing plant, large fruit clusters
‘Early Girl’: one of the earliest tomatoes, produces through the summer
Mid-season Varieties (70 to 80 days to harvest)
‘Floramerica’: firm, deep red flesh, strong plant
‘Fantastic’: meaty rich flavor, heavy yields, crack resistant
Late-season Varieties (80 days or more to harvest)
‘Amish Paste’: Large paste tomatoes, good slicers, heavy yields
‘Brandywine’: A beefsteak with perfect acid-sweet combination, many variants are available
‘Matt’s Wild Cherry’: bright red tomatoes, foolproof in any climate, bears abundant fruit in high or low temps and in rain or drought
‘Sun Gold’: golden orange tomatoes, very sweet yet tart flavor, huge clusters
Beefsteak, Beefmaster, Ponderosa, and Oxheart are noted for their large fruit. However, these larger fruited types often are more susceptible to diseases and skin cracking. MY FAVORITE TOMATO IS THE CELEBRITY
CHECK OUT THIS VIDEO HOW TO CHOOSE TOMATO VARIETIES.
WIT & WISDOM
In 1781, there is record of Thomas Jefferson—an experimental farmer—raising tomatoes for his guests.
The tomato plant is native to South America but it was not commonly cultivated in the United States until 1835. In 1522, Spanish explorers returned home from the New World with tomatoes. Many people believed that the fruits were poisonous.
In the 19th century, the tomato was called “The Apple of Paradise” in Germany and “The Apple of Love” in France.
Tomatoes are nutritious and low in calories. One medium-sized tomato provides 57% of the recommended daily allotment (RDA) of vitamin C, 25% RDA vitamin A, and 8% RDA iron, yet it has only 35 calories.
Ease a headache by drinking tomato juice blended with fresh basil.
People have argued for quite a long time about whether tomatoes are fruits or vegetables!
Taken from https://www.almanac.com/plant/tomatoes
Till next time this is Becky Litterer, Becky’s Greenhouse, Dougherty Iowa firstname.lastname@example.org 641-794-3337 cell 641-903-9365