Tuesday, 17 June 2008

Helping Flowers Set

I'm sure if the flowers were bigger people would grow tomato plants for the beauty of their flowers as well as the fruit. It's amazing that this little flower is able to turn into a great big juicy tomato!

This season I've had some plants slow to set their fruit. It's not that I don't like the flowers, it's just that when they start to fade I can't wait to see the little pea-like toms forming.

It's best not to over-feed the plants when they are at the flowering stage otherwise it will take longer for the flowers to fade and the fruit to set. Also a misting of water and a gentle shake will help release the pollen inside the flowers and help fertilisation.

Tomato flowers are self-fertilising but help from a friendly bumble bee to move the pollen around inside the flowers seems absent this season. I don't think that I've seen more than two or three bees in the garden so far this year.

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