Wednesday, 1 September 2010

Tomato Troubles!

One of the things I learnt from growing tomatoes on my balcony last year was that they need constant care and attention. I took a lot of time on my tomatoes last year, which resulted in a productive period of cropping on the London Vegetable Garden balcony!

Now that the London Vegetable Garden has moved to an allotment, my tomato growing of 2010 has been a very different experience entirely. I started off in the spring by planting some baby plants which I had purchased in the nearby garden centre. These have grown and trusses are swelling, laden with green tomatoes that are just waiting to ripen.

I have also grown tomato plants from seed back home on the windowsill. These plants were then transplanted to the London Vegetable Garden allotment when they were big enough. All in all, I have around six different varieties of tomato to enjoy this year, of which so far my girlfriend and I have been enjoying 'Golden Sweet'.

However, this year's weather has proven rather problematic for many tomato growers, including my mum and myself! The rapid changes in temperature cause the tomatoes to swell or contract, which causes many of them to split. Once they have split, they are susceptible to attack from pests, or simply drying up and decay:

Luckily, this is only affecting a handful of my tomatoes, so I still have plenty of intact fruits waiting to ripen:
I wanted to document this problem as I'm sure urban gardeners nation-wide are experiencing the same trouble with tomatoes that aren't in a greenhouse. Is anyone else in the same boat? Does anyone have any tips on how to decrease the amount of split tomatoes on the allotment?


  1. Hi Callum,
    I believe that when a Tom splits it's had too much or too little water - I can't remember which way round it is (silly me) but with all the rain we've been having I would say it's the "too much" one as all my GH toms have been fine.
    This year I have also found a hundred and one slugs and snails feasting their way happily on whatever tomato they fancy - green or red!
    It's a bit of a pot luck world out on the allotment.

  2. hi good day nice post you have . great . i hope you have a post about wind spinners
    im interested on this i hope you can help me . thank you!

  3. I had the same problem, a lot of my tomatoes were smaller than usual. Could it be related to this?

    I noticed my spinach early in the spring had a silver hue to the stem(aluminum?), which I did not feel like eating. My blueberries, raspberries, strawberries produced a good crop for their young ages. The way I see it, aluminum is aluminum oxide, and fruits are anti-oxidants, which make aluminum oxides harmless. It is having an effect on plants requiring a non acidic soil. Test your soil, rainwater. i will be doing the same in the spring and summer.

  4. Hmmm! nice post! I like your efforts! thanks for the posting!
    Green Industry

  5. Tomatoes are always tricky; but persevere. Unfortunately, they're always a favourite for pests and garden insects.



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