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General discussion regarding the techniques and methods used to successfully grow tomato plants in containers.

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Old July 31, 2017   #166
Labradors2
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Thanks Karen. I will check out the epidermis! We ate the ripest one for lunch today and it was still quite firm (tasty though). I'll keep the other and see what colour it ends up

Linda
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Old July 31, 2017   #167
Fred Hempel
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I think first fruits are more likely to be cross pollinated.

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Originally Posted by GrowingCoastal View Post
"I'll only dare to save seeds from the first fruits of all my varieties"

Care to elaborate? I'm guessing that they are more likely to be self pollinated?
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Old July 31, 2017   #168
gorbelly
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I think first fruits are more likely to be cross pollinated.
I wonder whether climate is a factor here. In places where winters are milder, insects come out of dormancy earlier or don't hibernate. So maybe there's more competition for the first flowers of a species and more pollination from insects.

In the northeast, if you plant out right near your last frost date, there are often very few pollinators active when your first tomatoes set, and those that are active prefer the cornucopia of nectar-bearing spring flowers to something like a tomato blossom.

I planted out pretty late this year--a whopping 6 weeks after my average LFD, and my first trusses on my plants are ENORMOUS. The tomatoes are very large but not because of fused blooms--normal fruit are just really big--and there are a lot of them on the truss. Usually, first trusses have fewer tomatoes in my garden, although some of those first ones can be larger due to more fused blooms earlier on. I think a lot of this is due to the fact that pollinator populations were very high when the plants started blooming.
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Old July 31, 2017   #169
gorbelly
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How reliable is that? I see that some of my bagged blossoms may not have mature fruit to get seed from.
It's probably pretty reliable where you are but not 100%. If I think I might end up sharing seed, I always bag blossoms.

I was noticing poor fruit set on bagged blossoms as well (last year, 100% of the eggplant blooms I bagged failed to set fruit, and the tomatoes produced smaller, fewer fruit from bagged blooms), but this year, I've started using a tuning fork to vibrate blossoms. I've seen so much pollinator activity this year that I honestly think it might be redundant for my unbagged blooms, but I've been noticing that the bagged blooms are all setting and growing fruit well, which is different than in the past.
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Old July 31, 2017   #170
Labradors2
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I didn't notice all the crazy bumble bees visiting my tomato flowers when my tomato plants first began to bloom so I'm hoping that my first fruits will be self-pollinated.

Gorbelly has a good point! The bumbles were busy in my flower beds earlier, and didn't seem to notice the tomato flowers.

Linda
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