It’s been another six weeks or so since my last tomato update. No picture this time because my plants are looking pretty crappy right now! The leftmost one is nearly dead. The center one is dying, with just three small tomatoes left growing. The rightmost plant is dying on the bottom and thriving on the top. I’ve completely abandoned pruning so that they stopped growing out of reach. Pretty soon I’ll have to pull the plants out. Two are destined for my compost bin. One is destined for the green bin.

End of Summer Means End of Tomatoes?
In some areas, the end of summer usually means the end of tomatoes. I thought it would, too, but I just checked and the rightmost plant has seven or eight flowers showing. Only time will tell if they get fertilized and start producing. However, the days are getting shorter, so the plants will have less sunlight to do their magic. I got my largest tomatoes in the middle of summer when the days are nice and long.

Bad Soil Means Mixed Tomato Results
My soil is the epitome of sandy soil. That’s not good for plants. I’ve fertilized and fertilized, and even replaced the soil initially with a mix of compost and garden soil. Next year when I have my garden box, the whole box will be filled with good soil, but I might dig down a bit further to deposit some fertilizer and good soil, too. Most of my Stripe Romans have had some form of blossom end rot. Of course, it’s always been a weirdly cool summer. The rot could indicate a lack of calcium, or a lack of heat. Next summer should be normal, so I should know better then.

My Haul
And now for the question of the day: how many tomatoes did I get?

As of right now, I have 83 tomatoes. If the third plant hadn’t died, I’d probably be over 120. Not bad for three months! If those other buds become tomatoes, that will bring my total to 90. I’ll take it!

If you want to grow tomatoes, it’s easy. You don’t need a backyard as long as you have a sunny balcony. If you plan to start from seeds, order now. If you plan to start from seedlings, watch for seedling sales in your area. It’s usually early spring.

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