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Old May 20, 2018   #1
NarnianGarden
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Default Proper place and time for first buds to appear

Hello all,
My season is underway, in very different conditions I had before. I am curious at the results, but also a bit conserned to see that my seedlings that are large enough to show flower buds, are in no hurry to grow them... Should I be worried?

My largest one has ten leaves already (five pairs of proper leaves), and usually by that time, the first buds have appeared. Sometimes earlier even.
This variety is a PL cherry, very vigorous otherwise, putting out sideshots that I am promptly removing..
In a week or so, I would like to plant this largest one, and possibly others. Would like to see some flower buds by then!
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Old May 21, 2018   #2
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Any ideas if the plant is a 'mule' when no flowers yet, after the tenth leave?
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Old May 21, 2018   #3
Al@NC
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I'll defer to more veteran growers but I know that different varieties are different obviously. And I know that your NPK ratios can effect flowering/budding/fruit such as if your overwhelming your plants with Nitrogen then your pushing them to grow more green than anything else.

Otherwise I don't know what else would really be affecting your plants...

I personally would hit them with something like the old Bloom Booster by Miracle Grow and see what happens but it had a ratio of 10-52-10!

Al
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Old May 21, 2018   #4
NarnianGarden
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Thanks for the suggestion. As I mentioned above, the plant is otherwise very healthy looking (no visible nitrogen overdose, I have learned from past seasons' mistakes...).. and the seed wasn't even old, the only reason I could think of.. (and even older seeds have always done well for me)
I will wait and see, but if no flowers after the sixts set of true leaves, I am beginning to wonder if it might be a 'mule'. (Aren't the sterile, mule plants often very lush and vigorous looking?)
If no flowers after it has been potted, I might take a side shoot and root it to see if it will fare better...
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Old May 21, 2018   #5
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Hi,
Seven is the typical number of leaf nodes before a flower cluster but ten is not unusual, I've seen that on more than one OP variety that I've grown.
The number is under genetic control and separate from other growth habit traits like sp (determinate/indeterminate). So I have seen it in several determinate varieties (Heidi and Deep Space come to mind) and in indeterminates as well.
I've never seen a plant that flowered on fewer than seven main stem leaves, but they do exist as Joseph says.

Also besides N there are other factors that can affect vegetative vs reproductive growth, including day/night temperature differences, low light conditions, etc etc. Don't worry too much! It will probably develop normally after planting out. The bigger number can be a problem for me because the greenhouse is warm and light limited, I may end up with a lot of stem and vegetation before getting to fruit in that case. But outdoors the cool temperatures keep node distances short, so in a similar climate, you should have no problem.
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Old May 21, 2018   #6
NarnianGarden
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Yes, they have been oudoors for weeks. Days have been warm, nights cooler...
This is the first time I see a tomato seedling not willing to produce any buds after its tenth leaf node (fifth set of true leaves), so I wondered if I might have got a sterile one. All lovely green leaves, no flowers
Will wait and see..
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Old May 21, 2018   #7
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What variety is it?
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Old May 21, 2018   #8
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I just pulled a mule yesterday that was 3 feet tall and had perhaps 15 nodes. There were tiny buds that never developed in a few places.
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Old May 21, 2018   #9
NarnianGarden
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It's a Cereza Amarilla. very healthy and sturdy.

Spartanburg, what a shame about yours. I hope that won't happen to me...

Edit. If the plant proves to be a mule, is it useless to try to grow one of its side shoots?

Last edited by NarnianGarden; May 21, 2018 at 10:45 AM.
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Old May 22, 2018   #10
MrBig46
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Indentminante varieties bloom after the eleventh leaf with me (including the Stupice which I tested). Maybe it's light conditions in pre-cultivation. Determinante will bloom me earlier, by variety, some even after the seventh leaf.
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Old May 22, 2018   #11
NarnianGarden
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Thanks Vladimir. I will wait..
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Old May 22, 2018   #12
Spartanburg123
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NarnianGarden View Post
It's a Cereza Amarilla. very healthy and sturdy.

Spartanburg, what a shame about yours. I hope that won't happen to me...

Edit. If the plant proves to be a mule, is it useless to try to grow one of its side shoots?
I would think so- the sucker would be a clone of the original mule. No big loss, I stuck a big fat Cherokee Purple right in it's place!
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Old May 25, 2018   #13
NarnianGarden
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I believe it was a false alarm in my case. There seem to be some buds forming on my Cereza A. Hopefully they'll bloom and set fruit properly.
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Old May 25, 2018   #14
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For beefsteak types, after 11 leaves has been most often for me. But that's because I grow my seedlings in a window to the west (and we start getting actual sun at the end of march usually).

Proper light during seedling stage is crucial to having early buds, and the difference can be dramatic. Also proper good growth when they are small (which requires just right nutrition which is not that easy to get).

Stupice can have flowers after 5 leaves, tested by me. I find also that potato leaf plants have flowers after less leaves generally, even ones considered late (their lateness comes from the fact that those blooms don't often set).
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Old May 25, 2018   #15
NarnianGarden
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I know that light is crucial. Sadly, my new location isn't as sunny as my previous one (which was like a green house!)- but the seedlings still get four hours of direct bright morning sun. The leaves in all of them are bright / dark green and healthy, no visible nutrition deficiencies.. so I am hopeful they all will do well.
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