Ripening tomatoes on the vine (The Garden) : LUSENET : Countryside : One Thread

This may be too late for most, but some folks further south may benifit this year, while the rest of us can file it away for next season. I read an article in an old Organic Gardening magazine that suggested tying a few granny smith apples to a tomatoe vine that isn't ripening fast. It seems that apples release a gas, ethylene, that hastens ripening of tomatoes. I am going to give this a try on one of the container toms I have on my sunporch and leave the other to ripen on its own. Both have golf ball sized 'maters on em now.

-- Jay Blair in N. AL (, November 27, 2000


Jay: Be sure and let us know how it works. I would really be interested in hearing the results. Thanks for the info - diane

-- Diane (, November 29, 2000.

Ethylene is what they use in commercial tomato production to make the ones picked green ripen by the time they get to the grocery. It causes the red color but not the maturation of flavor you get on a naturally ripened tomato. If it's a matter of losing it to frost, go for it. Otherwise expect the flavor of a grocery store tomato in January. The apple can also be used to make bromilliads like pineapples bloom--same gas and it will cause potatoes to sprout in storage.

-- marilyn (, November 29, 2000.

Marilyn, A nurseryman showed me some vine ripened ones using this technique at his nursery. They had full flavor ( I tasted one). I mentioned to him your answer and he agreed that when ripened off the vine, the flavor will suffer, however when done on the vine as I described on the post, the flavor does not diminish that much. Let you know how mine do in a couple of days.

-- Jay Blair (, November 30, 2000.

Hi Jay: Is it a couple of days yet? How are the tomatoes coming? diane

-- diane (, December 06, 2000.

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