Garden Progress – Tomatoes

Back in Spring, we started with only roma tomato plants (for salsa) but due to furry and feathered pests digging them up, we replaced most of these with donation tomato plants from friends. Now, in our first year of growing tomatoes, we are growing roma, big boy, cherry, and grape tomatoes!

big-boy-tomatoesBig Boy

Having never planted tomatoes before, we just let them do their thing without pinching back any of their growth. What we’ve learned: Big Boy isn’t just named for the size of its fruit.. this plant is out of control! It’s taken over the plot we put it in with a tangled, jungly mess that makes it difficult for us to go in and do any sort of pest management.

tomato-fruitwormAnd we do have tomato pests! Spotted only because he’s a brown little guy in a forest of green, we identified this ugly, little guy as a tomato fruitworm. We found and picked off one from our big boy plant and one from our roma tomato plant but I’d be surprised if there weren’t plenty others hiding around in there. Andrew also says he found a tomato hornworm, which we don’t have pictured, but it had already been taken care of by a local wasp (thanks, friend!).

roma-fruitworm-damageRoma

Speaking of roma tomatoes, even though we originally set our selves up to get enough of them to make salsa, we did not have a bountiful crop this year. Whittled down to one seedling shortly after planting (next year, we’re definitely starting seeds inside first!), most of the plant’s first fruits were damaged by a single tomato fruitworm before we could harvest them. By the time they were ripe, we had three roma tomatoes, a far cry from the 10lbs our salsa recipe called for.

cherry-grape-tomatoesCherry + Grape

Overall, I would say our cherry and grape tomato plants have been the most successful. The plants look healthy, aren’t overgrown, and they’ve been producing an abundance of fruits. Some of the grape tomatoes have what looks like a split in the skin, which the internet tells me is likely due to uneven watering. Most of the tomatoes haven’t been affected by it so we haven’t been too concerned.

Tomatoes, tomatoes, tomatoes! Too bad Andrew and I don’t like raw tomatoes… We’ll likely try again for salsa next year.

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