Ripen Last Tomatoes.

on Thursday, 03 December 2015. Posted in Blog

Ripen Last Tomatoes.

Ripen the last of your tomatoes while there's still warmth in the autumn sunshine – you've got a couple of weeks before you run out of time and have to admit defeat.

Even in good summers, it's a lucky gardener who ripens every tomato perfectly - but with quick action now you can increase your red tomato quota considerably.

Early on, start removing any large leaves which are shading your fruit (don't overdo this, though, or you'll reduce their ability to feed themselves).

Then ripen as many fruits on the vine as possible by turning up the warmth and sunlight to the max: a greenhouse heater works wonders, or you can try the cloche trick.

Unhitch your tomatoes carefully from their supports and lay stem and branches along a piece of black weed-suppressing fabric on the greenhouse floor. Cover the trusses with a cloche to double the sun's power. The black membrane also absorbs heat to release it through the night.

If frost is forecast, gently pull up the whole tomato plant and hang it upside down from the roof in a frost-free shed, garage or conservatory. The warmth should keep the tomatoes ripening long after the greenhouse has emptied for winter.