Well, we made the tough decision to tear down our greenhouse plants today. Ultimately, once we start seeing freezing temperatures like we are, it costs us money to heat the greenhouse. Keeping it growing will produce only marginal improvement as well, so it was time for it to come down.
So, this is our final harvest of tomatoes of the season! Not too shabby and we’ll probably use them to can up some tasty winter salsa.
Over the years, we’ve gotten much better at regularly harvesting our tomatoes earlier in the season. We’ve learned that this helps us during the final weeks of preservation, just so we don’t have an absolute ton of tomatoes we have to do something with “stat.” So, we try to get ahead as much as possible by doing our preservation as tomatoes come in over the season.
This also helps the plant mature the other tomatoes since it no longer has to put any resources into maintaining those ripe tomatoes. So, it helps us and it helps the plant. Win, win!
For our green tomatoes, we’ll just lay them out on a table and let them get a little bit of sunlight. We know there’s all sorts of voodoo to try and get green tomatoes to ripen. Things like putting them in a paper bag, using banana peels, etc. The truth is that these techniques do work, but only because green tomatoes will tend to ripen off the vine anyway. Even if you literally just lay them on a table. Those techniques only appear to work because it’d happen anyway. There’s no harm in doing these other methods, but they’re ultimately unnecessary.
We’re looking at trying to be “done” with our garden by next weekend. We’re going to be pushing up against hard frost temperatures (about 25F) by then, so we’ll be right on target. Here’s to hoping we don’t get an unexpected snowfall in between!