For those who have been following the great tomato race, which isn’t officially a race but rather a quest for bragging rights between my mom and I at the community garden plot we share specifically for the purpose of growing tomatoes, I have good news and bad news for those of you on Team Erin.
Here’s the good news:
See those beauts? That’s just one cluster on my heirloom Legacy tomato. There are about three other clusters like that. The tomatoes are a great size; as big or bigger than the typical tomato you’d buy in the store. My mom has nowhere near the number of fruits on her Legacy.
Here’s the bad news: They’ve been like that for about three weeks, despite the fact that we’ve had record temperatures and plenty of warm (and even hot) nights. They just won’t ripen (and no, this isn’t a green tomato variety).
Meanwhile, my mom’s Delicious tomato plant also has less fruit than mine, and she officially gets the price for the first ripe tomato of the year from that plant. But what’s weird is that the tomatoes on my Delicious plant are nicely formed and otherwise pretty (although, like their next door neighbors on Legacy, they aren’t getting ripe any too fast), while the tomatoes on my mom’s Delicous plant are a big deformed (although she reports that they taste delicious … go figure).
There’s still no real way to know exactly what accounts for the differences in the plants.
To recap, the plants were purchased from the same place and planted in the same plot. They are receiving the same water and both are in complete full sun. I planted mine with Tomato Tone organic fertilizer and my mom enrobed hers in plastic for the first several weeks of the growing season.
So here’s the question though: Who can tell me why all those tomatoes on my Legacy plant are taking so darn long to ripen? Is there anything I can do to speed up the process?