Supersweet 100's?

Bloomin_Onion(2/3)July 15, 2014

My potted sweet 100 is really ripening slowly. I find there's maybe a tomato or two ripe every other day. Will this be the rate that they ripen for the rest of the summer? It's happening too slow for me to use the tomatoes for any cooking or feeding to my family. I really need them to ripen faster than this... am I being impatient? Will the late summer season cause them to ripen quicker? :( On the right is the plant. It's pretty large, about 6' high. I even cut it back! it was really tall, but I've been suckering them (I'm aware of the anti-sucker movement lol) and cutting them back, but now that the plant has begun ripening the few tomatoes at the bottom, I've stopped suckering and cutting it back and I'll just let it grow for the rest of the summer unless It gets too tall that I can't stake it.
I know you can't tell, but the entire plant has a lot of tomato clusters, big and small. All green. *sigh*... I guess I'm hoping that I'll be told that yeah when the season hits, they'll all ripen up pretty quick? :( Any advice or heads up would be awesome, Thanks in advance!

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daninthedirt(Cent TX; HZ10, Sunset z30, USDA z8a)

Not sure what you mean by ripening slowly. You mean you get green fruit that just stop growing and stay green for a long time? Or do you mean that it's taking a long time for the fruit to grow?

In my experience with SS100s, they start turning color pretty much when they reach full size.

I've heard it said that heat suppresses ripening, but I'm seeing 95Fs and getting plenty of red tomatoes. I've also heard it said that excess nitrogen slows ripening.

Now, for a plant that size, I wouldn't expect to get more than a half-dozen ripe ones every day. They're certainly not going to ripen all at once.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2014 at 3:35PM
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Sorry if I was unclear, for example you see the picture of the tomatoes? We picked one yesterday. They ripen at the speed that you see from the picture. Online I see cherry tomatoes with half a dozen of red tomatoes on each cluster... are they going to just creep like this in ripening from the bottom to the top of the plant? I have to wait for every tomato from the bottom to ripen before the rest do? That's awfully slow at the current rate... Do I just leave them on the vine? I hope I'm not coming off badly... :)... but one a day isn't really the "wow, you'll have cherry tomatoes coming out of your ears" that i expected with such a big plant loaded with tomatoes. Am I missing something? Is it too early in the year?

    Bookmark   July 15, 2014 at 4:26PM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

They will ripen somewhat faster now that you have stopped doing all the pruning - that only triggers new growth and slows/delays ripening not to mention all the lost fruit.

But like Dan said above, no they will never kick into a "ripen all at once" mode. Only determinate varieties do that. If you want lots of ripe fruit all at one time then you have to grow several plants rather than just one.

(I'm aware of the anti-sucker movement lol)

Like removing suckers is the old established method and leaving them on is a new movement? :) Sorry, but It's the other way around.


    Bookmark   July 15, 2014 at 4:33PM
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daninthedirt(Cent TX; HZ10, Sunset z30, USDA z8a)

Well, in your picture, it looks to me that the ones that are ripe are the larger ones. So when they get big enough, they should turn red. Hopefully not before. As I said, with a plant that big you should get to the point where you get of order half a dozen ripe ones a day. With one plant you won't really have cherry tomatoes coming out of your ears. I get that way with eight plants.

Clumps of Sweet100s don't get red all at the same time.

They look very healthy, by the way, so just be patient.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2014 at 4:36PM
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The entire truss of a supersweet isn't going to all ripen at once. The photos on those pages are a lie, LOL.

In the full blast last year got enough after a week days with mine to use them in a pasta sauce, but I also didn't prune since I was using a Florida Weave last year. So I had multiple trusses with a ripe tomato or two any given day.

I wouldn't recommend leaving them once they get ripe. My supersweet was very prone to splitting if I didn't harvest right away.

Really liked super sweet but it was such a monster of a plant that I didn't grow it this year.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2014 at 5:54PM
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:) Dave by the movement, I meant the anti-anti-suckering movement :p... in other words, I'm aware that when I mention I'd been suckering, there'll instantly be a few people that will jump to tell me to stop, it will stunt my crop, it's not necessary, etc. However I can only get bamboo poles around 4 feet long, and the plant was just overpowering the pole and then some of the branches were snapping from their own weight or hanging down so we couldn't get out of our door :) I don't have the Plant with a tomato cage over it... in fact I bought this plant about 2.5' tall in a "permanent" pot and cage (the plastic kind where it's one black plastic unit of pot and cage attached, sold to be left in the pot for the entirety of the plants life) but I brought it right home, took some cutters and cut the cage from around the plant, transplanted it in a much larger pot, watered, fertilized and tied the branches to a pole. Now it's MUCH larger than it ever was intended to get.... but I do baby it I'll admit.

When I google super sweet tomatoes, I get pictures like this.... (view pic)... can anyone tell me which variety these are? This is the yield that I was expecting... maybe less tomatoes per cluster, but certainly quite a few ripening at the same time so they'd be enough to cook with...

    Bookmark   July 15, 2014 at 6:29PM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

The pics you are seeing with lots of ripe all on the same cluster are misleading. Yet another example of false advertising.

The only way that happens is if you either glue ripe one from another plant onto the cluster (it has been done) or if leave the first 4-5 that ripen on the cluster there until the others ripen too. Then quick take the photos. You have to hurry because the first ones that ripened are rotting already.

What you are seeing is normal but you might want to read the many discussions on the Tomatoes forum about picking at color break.


    Bookmark   July 15, 2014 at 6:34PM
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daninthedirt(Cent TX; HZ10, Sunset z30, USDA z8a)

FWIW, I *never* remove suckers on a cherry tomato. But maybe if it's in a pot, the strategy might differ. I run them up trellises, and they get 6-8 feet long.

Well, almost never. This year I'm pinching the suckers on the top, so the maximum length of the vine never exceeds 6 feet. We get several weeks of 100F temps here, and when I let the vines flop over at the top of the trellis and grow 8 feet long it's just a LONG way to pump water. I'd rather encourage growth lower down.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2014 at 6:35PM
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Your tomatoes are beautiful. Enjoy them as long as you can.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2014 at 9:09PM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Yeah that same photo is a common one and shows up attached to several different varieties - seed vendors do that - but most label it Supersweet 100.

You might with perfect growing conditions get something somewhat close to that rigged photo if you grow the plant in the ground (not in a container as that limits it to begin with), do no pruning whatsoever, consistently provide the ideal nutrient levels, and then leave the ripe fruit on the vine until past ideal picking stage.

So if you grow it in the ground and are ever able to develop and then maintain the perfect growing conditions for tomato plants please be sure to pass them on to the rest of us. Of like most of us just accept that perfection never exists in a garden much less in a container. :)


    Bookmark   July 15, 2014 at 10:25PM
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This photo is of Sweet Baby Girl - but most years we grow Sweet 100's as we did this year and they develop the same - as the plant matures - more of the fruit ripens at the same time because there are tons more fruit on the plant - IMO. My grandkids pick the Sweet 100's clean the first part of the season - then can't keep up with the plant during July & August. You should have a lot of cherry tomatoes ripening at the same time as the season progresses - we are experiencing that right now. Now there are 50 tomatoes ripe at the same time rather than 2-10 a few weeks ago.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2014 at 12:51AM
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Pssst ! Pssst ! Kids, don't let Grandpa put those beauties in the fridge ! Sneak 'em out when he's not looking !

    Bookmark   July 17, 2014 at 1:37AM
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By the way, do not attempt to keep already red cherry tomatoes on the vine in hope to get "almost ripe" cluster. One rain - and all your red ones split... I usually go and pick even pink ones if big rain is in forecast. They will turn red in a day on the kitchen counter, and on the vine they most likely will be ruined.

    Bookmark   July 17, 2014 at 1:45PM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Hudson grows some great looking plants but they are grown in ground in a greenhouse so production comparison and conditions are quite different than for the OP.

And galinas is quite right in saying one should not leave ripe fruit on the vine just for appearances sake. Most pick at color break, not just full ripeness, as mentioned above.


    Bookmark   July 17, 2014 at 4:44PM
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Haha - Deeby - I have to admit - every-time I walk in the GH - a cherry tomato ( usually several) are eaten off the vine without regards to what is left for the grandkids - and they are not refrigerated - imagine that!! I did have a tomato sandwich today from nice cold sliced tomatoes and home made bread - it was awesome!!

I agree with Dave - I keep forgetting that most who post on this forum topic - Growing Tomatoes - may not be growing tomatoes in a GH - but that is the only way we can grow tomatoes - is in a GH - so I make comments from that perspective.

    Bookmark   July 18, 2014 at 1:15AM
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Hudson, thank you!! You got my question that for some reason was never really grasped by anyone else, and gave me an answer! And with a photo to boot! I am noticing my tomatoes from bottom to top are now turning "white"... that colour change before they go red... however even the tiny tiny ones (pea size) are turning white, so I dunno what to expect. We'll see, but either way I'm excited!

    Bookmark   July 18, 2014 at 1:41AM
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Hudson, it's a start !

    Bookmark   July 19, 2014 at 12:37AM
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