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Thread: What's up with Tomatoes

  1. #1
    Dog Whisperer cookshow's Avatar
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    Default What's up with Tomatoes

    Bought a # this weekend, 26 cords. Last month they were 10 cords #.

    Last year I started to note prices throughout the year, usually the spike is late in the year. Things looked green on the mainland so I don't think drought is an issue, haven't heard of any flooding.

    Anyone know?
    ‎"You know what you say when people tell you you can't do something? Fool, shut your mouth up!"
    Ernie K Doe

  2. #2

    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    Quote Originally Posted by cookshow View Post
    Bought a # this weekend, 26 cords. Last month they were 10 cords #.

    Last year I started to note prices throughout the year, usually the spike is late in the year. Things looked green on the mainland so I don't think drought is an issue, haven't heard of any flooding.

    Anyone know?
    Last month you probably bought tomAWWtoes and this weekend they were probably tomAYEtoes. Them tomAYEtoes think they are sooo superior...
    Soy el chele mono.

  3. #3
    TRN's fiesty redhead catahoula fan's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    Don't know, Kev, as I can't bring myself to buy any of the crappy-looking things that are for sale now. Picked half-ripe, completely tasteless...yuck! I'm not growin' any right now either, too much wet and not enough dry for good maters. Got a few plants cloned out from the beefsteak, but they're being pampered until Nov gets here. Sure am missin' good tomatoes!!!
    "Patience is a virtue, but persistence to the point of success is a blessing."

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    Junkyard Dog randude's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    I am back in Seattle. I have always had very good luck growing tomatoes here, many species.

    When I was in Louisiana everyone had trouble growing them. They would rot before they would ripen and other things. I bought some starts from Lowes called Creole tomatoes. They were developed by LSU. Seemed they would be a perfect match for the weather and I wouldn't have any problems growing them. Here is what a seed company says about them:

    The Creole was developed by LSU around 1956. An heirloom developed in Louisiana for hot, humid climates. This variety has a very loyal following. Yields 3-inch, round, firm, red fruit with a lots of juice and delicious tomatoey flavors with good acidity.

    At any rate, my Creole tomatoes would get a black spot on them, kind of like a cancer and would rot before they finished ripening. Guys at work said you had to put milk in the soil and other voodoo stuff. I just gave up on them.


    Here is a link to the seed company if you want to give them a try.

    http://store.tomatofest.com/Creole_p/tf-0129.htm
    Survivor

  5. #5

    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    Tomatoes are finally coming in over here. The squirrels are getting a lot of mine but Ive also been able to pillage from the family garden. Got some purple and some plum varieties. My girl made some very good tomato salsa and some white corn salsa, 2 bowls lasted about 1 day. Tasty stuff.

    White and Red Salsa.jpg

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    Dog Whisperer cookshow's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    Nice.
    ‎"You know what you say when people tell you you can't do something? Fool, shut your mouth up!"
    Ernie K Doe

  7. #7

    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    Last years tomatoes here in new york had a bacteria that ate the stems and killed the plants(lowes and home depot must have used the same vendor) I've been having good luck w/my tomatoes this year until we had some hard rains this weekend and they all split, still taste good though..

  8. #8
    just diggin' it Outstanding in the Dirt's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    Here is something I found on nicaragua-community.com. "Certain types of tomatoes, like Roma, Creole, and Golden Beauty are hardier and enjoy the hot and humid climate here in Nicaragua. Yet, even Chocolate Stripe and Anahu can be carefully tended to produce at least one crop before succumbing to insects or viruses. The trick for me has been to continually clone healthy plants so that I’ve got a backup when the original plant starts showing disease or a life-threatening insect invasion. The cloned plant will be a true copy of the original. Planting clones instead of seeds saves weeks to months of time when waiting for another fresh harvest of tomatoes in your kitchen."

    Have any of you guys tried rooting cuttings (cloning)?

    Here is another quote I found this evening. This on was on NL.
    You should plant the variety "Butte" (They say "Boo-tay"). Usually about 1/4 of the tomato crop sold in the markets are of this variety. If you don't know how to use the seeds from tomatoes you buy in the market, you may be able to buy it from one of the small hardware stores across the street from the bus station, just 50m south of the gas stations heading towards Nandaime. By the way, if you actually intend to eat the tomatoes, you will have trouble doing so unless you eat them green or research and learn to use safely the chemical "cipermetrina" due to the insect pressure on ripening tomatoes in your area. Cipermetrina is a low-toxicity, broad-spectrum pesticide with deterrent effects that can protect your tomatoes against egg-laying insects. It won't protect your crop against aphids, for which a higher toxicity chemical is required that I have never used and do not recommend.

    Has anyone tried growing the Butte tomato?

    After reading how Cookshoe suffered with his tomatoes after trying the best intelligent ideas around to help them find a way to grow, I wonder if I really want to even try to grow tomatoes when I get down there. But, right now I'm gathering information. I'll decide what I want to do later.
    Last edited by Outstanding in the Dirt; 01-27-2014 at 11:26 PM.

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    Dog Whisperer cookshow's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    I have had better luck in other spots here on the Island so it is worth trying to grow them. You may find out your dirt is the best to grow them in, you just never know.
    Last edited by cookshow; 01-28-2014 at 07:25 AM.
    ‎"You know what you say when people tell you you can't do something? Fool, shut your mouth up!"
    Ernie K Doe

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    TRN's fiesty redhead catahoula fan's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    Your first quote, OITD, is mine. Darrell asked me to write something for his site. I clone all the time! It's the only way I've found to keep myself in tomatoes year round, and that's a constant struggle even. Tomatoes are a difficult crop here, but they can be grown if you're hard-headed enough...and really, is there anything better than a fresh, homegrown mater???
    "Patience is a virtue, but persistence to the point of success is a blessing."

  11. #11
    Viejo del Foro Just Plain John Wayne's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    But yet the local market here in Port is almost ALWAYS full of the Roma tomatoes... Am I eating some of that GMO Crap?
    To be called a "Has Been" I must surmise, is much Greater than to be called a "Nevah Been"... JW...



  12. #12

    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    I've been seeing a few plantings of tomatoes in those "cloth houses". Kind of like a muslin, or cheese cloth. I saw a lot of it in Mexico on the way down this trip. I understand the cloth is made in Guatemala, but is available in Nicaragua. Quonset hut shape, kind of like a cheap-O plastic greenhouse.

    Probably won't stop the rot, those fungi are pretty small, but might keep the bugs away. I'm trying some plantings shortly, I have a few varieties with me. I've always thought that those cherry tomatoes would do well, they grow like weeds in the US and the flavor is good.

    I'll ask Susana (my agronomist) tomorrow morning, she has already gone to bed. I know a couple of tomato growers at my elevation that put in a summer crop. This has been a difficult year for them because it's been so cold and rainy in the north.

    I don't really care for the ROMA but it's probably grown for a reason. I talked to one of the aforementioned growers about something else, and he claimed that there wouldn't be a market for a different tomato.

    From growing tomatoes in So Cal as a boy, I know that they won't set blossoms if the overnight temp is too high.

    I saw some beautiful tomatoes in CR two weeks ago. Firm apples from Chile.

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    Dog Whisperer cookshow's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    Would not be surprised to find Hydroponic systems in some of those hoop houses. Like solar, the equipment prices have really dropped in the past few years, also many NGO's are bringing in some low-tech irrigation systems that are impressive and a handy person that has seen a system in place can easily fabricate a knock-off.

    I believe the grower to be correct about no market, or at least little market, maybe someday, but not today. I recently wrote about buying tomatoes in Bluefields, I bought some small ugly tomatoes with a nice flavor for 10 cords a #, most everyone else was buying the Roma type for 20 cords a #. There is a limited "Gringo" market for other tomatoes and if you could find Nicas that have lived abroad you would find some more customers
    ‎"You know what you say when people tell you you can't do something? Fool, shut your mouth up!"
    Ernie K Doe

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    Viejo del Foro Just Plain John Wayne's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    I have seen Felix's photos of the tobacco they grow in Estli ...

    They use some of that stuff to shade parts of the growing process...

    If I am not wrong he put the pic's on here, but if they disappeared during an update I have no idea..

    I thought it was rather neat what he was doing with his Cigar manufacturing.

    I will drop him a line over it to his E-mail address.. He is a pretty busy boy in these day's like Dud is with his business interests, I don't fault them for not being here on TRN all the time like the old day's..


    Everybody has to eat and obligations to fulfill....
    To be called a "Has Been" I must surmise, is much Greater than to be called a "Nevah Been"... JW...



  15. #15
    just diggin' it Outstanding in the Dirt's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    Greenhouses and hydroponics might be answers to the problems with growing tomatoes and other vegetable crops in Nica. True, it does cost more for the equipment and I've yet to find a hothouse tomato with good flavor.

  16. #16

    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    What happens to tomatoes is that as soon as they grow they get massive infestations with white flies and leaf miners which spread diseases. If i every get too it, I will make a plant house with the white insect screen to keep out the bugs. If I wanted to grow during the wet season, I would add a white plastic roof to keep out the rain so i could control the watering and keep the daily brisas from leaving everything wet.

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    Dog Whisperer cookshow's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    Started some tomato seeds a few days ago from some local tomatoes I found in Bluefields, should know in a few more days if they are viable. Will try and grow a few during the dry season and see how they do. The dry season is easiest for growing far as controlling variables and it is easier to spray for insects and such, during the rainy months it can be difficult to get spray on.

    I have half a dz or so eggplant growing in my "flower" beds, they are about 4-5 months old and producing ok, the bugs have been eating them up but it has been too wet to even try and spray. Finally getting some dry so will try and spray them today.
    ‎"You know what you say when people tell you you can't do something? Fool, shut your mouth up!"
    Ernie K Doe

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    TRN Science officer bill_bly_ca's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    Quote Originally Posted by cookshow View Post
    I have half a dz or so eggplant growing in my "flower" beds, they are about 4-5 months old and producing ok, the bugs have been eating them up but it has been too wet to even try and spray. Finally getting some dry so will try and spray them today.
    Does soap work on the bugs there??
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    Dog Whisperer cookshow's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    Quote Originally Posted by bill_bly_ca View Post
    Does soap work on the bugs there??

    Seems like it does work on the aphids, but when it rains everyday nothing really works. I pour all my soapy dishwater and the soapy water from the pila on the plants around the house, usually keeps the aphids off and an occasional spray of cypra scares off most of the rest.

    Starting to see slug tracks, 3 or 4 years ago they were insane, they were everywhere, then 2 years ago it was grub worms, seems like always something new. The white flies are a constant and I have had Nica Agronomists tell me they are a serious problem all over the Country.
    ‎"You know what you say when people tell you you can't do something? Fool, shut your mouth up!"
    Ernie K Doe

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    TRN Science officer bill_bly_ca's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    Ever thought about setting up a 10 or 20' hoop house ? Might give you a more controlled environment..

    Just need 1" square tubing bent into a 10' radius x 3 or 4.. I seen rolls of 4 and 6 mill polly at the Masaya market so I bet you can get it out there..
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    Dog Whisperer cookshow's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    If I get serious about it again that is what I will do. The hoop houses are easy to build and the shade and poly material is available on the Main. Not sure how well they would handle the winds here but not much you can do about that except hope for the best.
    ‎"You know what you say when people tell you you can't do something? Fool, shut your mouth up!"
    Ernie K Doe

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    Dog Whisperer cookshow's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    Was just looking at the pan with the tomato seeds in it, see a few sprouts peeking up through the dirt, started them 4 days ago so looks like they are going to be strong seeds.
    ‎"You know what you say when people tell you you can't do something? Fool, shut your mouth up!"
    Ernie K Doe

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    TRN Science officer bill_bly_ca's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    Quote Originally Posted by cookshow View Post
    If I get serious about it again that is what I will do. The hoop houses are easy to build and the shade and poly material is available on the Main. Not sure how well they would handle the winds here but not much you can do about that except hope for the best.

    6 Mill can handle 60+ mi/hr winds.. (Been flopping on the end of a sheet when they blew by.)

    In your case you would need side and end closings that could be dropped down at a moments notice so the wind does not get under.. Once it is under you are para-sailing..
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  24. #24

    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    I have some pics of the construction details of the cloth screen houses I have seen built in Nica. PM me if you want them. I picked up a roll of the material in Honduras yesterday, 6.6 M wide and 250 M long for $276. It's a higher quality material that is supposed to last a minimum of three years.

    The hoop is about 12 ft at the base and 6 ft high at the apex. It's formed with rebar covered with irrigation tape, and bent to the circumference. Two sturdy stakes retain the rebar on the sides, and there are three more supporting stakes, one in the center.

    I had 250 piedras canteras delivered (damn, those things are heavy), with these we hope to build raised beds. If I can get the math right, we will build a structure about 26 feet wide by 100 feet long to cover the raised beds. Two pieces of the standard 6 M rebar would be overlapped and welded in the center. The cloth material will have to be sewn together along one length, hopefully two seams to form a pocket. I plan on inserting plastic tubo through the pockets and using that to support the top of the rebar longitudinally.. (maintain the hoop spacing).

    Going to a double wide should give me more usable space than two singles, and a flatter side wall. If I can pull this off, I'll be able to plant closer to the side walls, without the plants touching the cloth. If the plants touch the cloth, the insects can bite through the cloth. The insects are vectors for fungus and bacterial infections, potatoes and tomatoes are particularly vulnerable. This is for a personal garden, so we will be planting all sorts of things.

    All of the above being said, there is probably a very good engineering reason for the sizes and shapes that are currently used. But, I'm one of those learn the hard way types.


    We saw miles of these on our trip down through Mexico; and I'm seeing more and more in Nicaragua.

    The gentleman's planting that I am watching consists of a half Mz of tomatoes that he is selling to Wal-Mart (Pali and Maxi-Pali). That want cleaner fruit, and less pesticide, but he claims that even with the cost of the cloth, and building the structure, he will still come out ahead because he won't have to spray (or at least, not spray nearly as much). He told me the variety he's planting, it sounded something like "pon" as in bone.
    Attached Images Attached Images

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    just diggin' it Outstanding in the Dirt's Avatar
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    Default Re: What's up with Tomatoes

    Yes, I think something like what KWP has there is the way to go. Prevents rain damage, keeps bugs and neighbors out and if fans are placed inside so there is circulation, mold and mildew can be controlled also. Off the top of my head, I don't know a tomato variety like pon as in bone.

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