Sunday, August 7, 2011

Totally tomatoless

I don't know what's going on with tomatoes but we're having a mysterious impasse.  Our plants have been full of green tomatoes for weeks, but they never turn red.  We had some Sun Sugar baby tomatoes early last month, but nothing since then.  Meanwhile our big tomatoes sit there, green as grass.

We've had plenty of heat and sunshine, which I thought were necessary for tomatoes (maybe we've had too much?).  We've had plenty of rain, which we don't always get in July. The plants have set fruit (often a problem in extreme heat) and the fruit has gotten big and beautiful.  But not red.

A few of the tomatoes ended up like this one, half-eaten on the driveway, ravaged by squirrels or chipmunks or some other kind of varmint.  If they'd just eat the whole thing I'd be less resentful, but no, they only eat a bite or two and leave the rest there to taunt us.

But most of our tomatoes are sitting there waiting for some kind of signal from the universe, and I've heard similar stories from other people.  Meanwhile my friend K is drowning in gorgeous red tomatoes and I'm jealous.  If not for the farmers' market we would be totally tomatoless.

I've usually thought of green tomatoes as a fall dish, when the vines are full but you know you'd better eat them before the killing frost.  Eating green tomatoes in July always seemed like shooting yourself in the foot -- it only postponed the moment when you got to eat the first wonderful red ones.  But I may have to change my plan this year.  If we don't eat them green, who knows when or if we'll be able to eat them at all!


  1. well then it's settled. I'll bring some in. That's just sad. I've heard about worms getting tomatoes this summer. I've been watching mine like a hawk. I don't know what's going on. Did you try pruning back some of the top stems and leaves so that the sun can get all the way through to the green tomatoes? Right after I did this my costoluto heirlooms turned red and took off.

  2. Ours are all green too. We have hundreds of romas sitting there doing nothing that helps me out.