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    KUXJ's Avatar
    KUXJ Posts: 975, Reputation: 97
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    #1

    May 12, 2009, 12:15 PM
    Upside down Tomatoes
    Curiosity getting the better of me, I decided to try growing an upside down tomato plant, and being frugal, I made a planter out of a five gallon bucket It isn't as fancy, but why spend $20 if you have the parts?.

    It has been outside for two weeks now, and is getting stronger, but there is one thing that I noticed; The main stem/stalk/trunk of the plant has started growing up, and I am assuming that after it sets fruit and they begin to grow, the stalk will grow downwards.

    Which leads me to this thought/questions:
    If the stalk is growing up, even though it is facing down, are the roots growing down, even though they are facing up?? Sounds almost like a paradox.

    Would this add stress to the plant?

    I also decided to put it up on an old pool deck, so if it starts to really grow I'll have enough support to just drape, and tie it around the deck.

    As an ongoing project I'll update on an irregular schedule, maybe every two weeks.

    Subject is a "Better Boy" started 042809... KUXJ
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    binx44's Avatar
    binx44 Posts: 1,028, Reputation: 88
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    #2

    May 12, 2009, 12:27 PM

    I've got to say I'm glad someone has finally wondered about this on the forums. I've seen it on TV and I really was wondering. Mind you I've also seen tomato plants advertised on TV that grow to be 7 or 8 feet in height and supposabally (spelling?) yield twice the amount of tomatoes..

    Please let me know if they end up growing down like they do on TV
    KUXJ's Avatar
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    #3

    May 12, 2009, 07:07 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by binx44 View Post
    mind you i've also seen tomato plants advertised on tv that grow to be 7 or 8 feet in height and supposabally (spelling?) yeild twice the ammount of tomatoes..
    I have also seen those ads, and the one thing I've noticed was the ground was well prepared for planting.
    As with the Upside down Tomato (UDT) ads, I suspect they give the plant the same treatment. The ad men won't show scrawny fruit or plants...That's show bizzzz!

    I could have done the same with my UDT, but opted for regular yard dirt, the only other amendment was a watering with miracle grow.

    Quote Originally Posted by binx44 View Post
    Please let me know if they end up growing down like they do on tv
    You betcha!
    To be realistic , I really think they will, you get a few of those 8 to 12oz more? fruits on there, and she's got to go down!

    Let's see... the 4th of July is on a Saturday this year, so look for a post every Friday, and we'll see if there are ripe Toms by the Fourth.
    That's pushin' it with 67 days, but it might happen.
    And that's okay, I like green fried too... KUXJ
    Just Dahlia's Avatar
    Just Dahlia Posts: 2,155, Reputation: 445
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    #4

    May 12, 2009, 08:34 PM
    I spent the 20 bucks 3 years ago.:)
    My first year was un-successful, but I think it wasn't in a great area. Since the weight on the whole thing was amazing I didn't know where to put it.

    The second year I moved it and only put cherry tomatoes in it, which grew just fine for a while, but then... I believe didn't get enough sun because of a large Pompas (?) grass I had growing.

    This year it's 3 strikes your out! I moved it again and made a make shift holder on my fence in a very sunny location with a drip system in it next to the rest of my tomatoes and it seems to be doing very well so far. Growing up. It only has about 3 feet to hit the ground, so I'm not sure what to do after it starts producing.:confused:

    I attempted to put a picture, but it was too big,:( I will try again tomorrow and keep updating.:)

    Looking forward to other updates.:)
    Just Dahlia's Avatar
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    #5

    May 12, 2009, 09:30 PM
    Name:  SSCN0498.JPG
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    Just Dahlia's Avatar
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    #6

    May 12, 2009, 09:36 PM
    Name:  SSCN0498.JPG
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    Sorry, too many pics just checking
    KUXJ's Avatar
    KUXJ Posts: 975, Reputation: 97
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    #7

    May 15, 2009, 04:19 PM
    Hello again Everyone! :)

    This weeks edition of UDT includes a pix of subject, some particulars, and a contest See Below .

    First the particulars: ;)
    Subject is a "Better Boy" started 042809
    Plant has grown 2.5" since last post on 051209 for a total of 17.2"
    Purchased at a local ACE Hrdw.Store Bonnie Plants Nursery
    Container Homemade
    Maturity 70-75days... So 4th of July will be a stretch :confused:
    Large fruit size Up to 16ozs
    Please disregard Date Stamp on Pix, It was only put there to confuse me.:eek:

    Now for the contest: :cool:
    If you look closely, you may be able to see two sets of flower stems.

    I will offer the first ripe tomato to the first poster to successfully pick out any one of the two locations.
    Answers have been verified by my neighbor, hermetically sealed in an old Bearnaise jar, and kept in an old milk-box by my trash cans since noon yesterday.

    Please PM me with shipping address.

    !!Offer void where prohibited!! :(
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    Just Dahlia's Avatar
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    #8

    May 15, 2009, 05:20 PM
    I SEE them and they look beautiful, I'm going to check mine right now.
    I believe that my label has blow away and I can't remember what is in it. :confused:
    I do know that I would not have put a beefsteak in there, so I think it is a Better Boy also. My Early Girl is in the ground.:)
    Just Dahlia's Avatar
    Just Dahlia Posts: 2,155, Reputation: 445
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    #9

    May 15, 2009, 05:44 PM
    I didn't plan on getting so detailed, but by my calculations...
    Planted on May 2nd (bought at Lowes)

    It may be a San Francisco Fog or a Better Boy. I experiment with different ones every year, but since it's in the upside down thing there was no dirt to bury the tag.
    [ATTACH]Name:  tomatoes and golf 2009 018.jpg
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    Second pic I have flowers! We are going to be in the 101-105' this weekend, so I will have to keep watch.:eek:

    The flowers are in the middle (kind of) if you can't see them) they are yellow! Ha ha
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    KUXJ's Avatar
    KUXJ Posts: 975, Reputation: 97
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    #10

    May 15, 2009, 07:01 PM
    WEEEEEEE HAVE A WINNNNNER!!

    As Grand Prize winner your Tomato will be flown All Expenses Paid to your location Via Rickenbacker Refrigerated Air Freight ~~~~~"Need Freight by Eight? Fly Rickenbacker!"


    Quote Originally Posted by Just Dahlia View Post
    It may be a San Francisco Fog or a Better Boy. I experiment with different ones every year
    Just to be clear... You have a tomato in your area called the S.F. Fog?

    Quote Originally Posted by Just Dahlia View Post
    Second pic I have flowers!! We are going to be in the 101-105' this weekend, so I will have to keep watch.:eek:
    I had to double check the NWS, couldn't believe your area will be that!! HHHOTTT!! This weekend, that's what we need here for our tomatoes in Cen. Pa. Lat N40' 21''.
    So far since Easter there's been 10days in 80's... 2days in 90's, mostly 60-70's Lows 40's

    Quote Originally Posted by Just Dahlia View Post
    The flowers are in the middle (kind of) if you can't see them) they are yellow! ha ha
    I saw them right away! Very Nice! I'm envious, wish we had your climate.
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    Just Dahlia's Avatar
    Just Dahlia Posts: 2,155, Reputation: 445
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    #11

    May 15, 2009, 08:53 PM
    Your so funny:p
    I will take a picture of my S.F. FOG tag when it gets light out again, but I have 16 people coming for dinner tomorrow, so it might be Sunday morning when it's 105!:eek:

    Thanks for the pics!:)
    Just Dahlia's Avatar
    Just Dahlia Posts: 2,155, Reputation: 445
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    #12

    May 17, 2009, 07:30 PM
    I don't think it's the FOG. I have to wait a couple more weeks before I can figure out what it is. They all look the same.
    Just Dahlia's Avatar
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    #13

    May 18, 2009, 03:57 PM
    No info on the label, all it says is 'PRIZE WINNER' San Francisco fog. I think it might be smaller toms, not like cherry but also not like Beef Steak. All the leaves look a like, so the second contestant will be the 'Mystery Tomato' I Love Tomatoes! :D
    KUXJ's Avatar
    KUXJ Posts: 975, Reputation: 97
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    #14

    May 18, 2009, 08:07 PM
    Quote Originally Posted by Just Dahlia View Post
    No info on the label, all it says is 'PRIZE WINNER' San Francisco fog. I think it might be smaller toms, not like cherry but also not like Beef Steak. All the leaves look a like, so the second contestant will be the 'Mystery Tomato' I Love Tomatoes!!:D
    From what I've been able to find so far, they are "tennis ball" size. 2 maybe 3ozs.

    While you are waiting out your "Mystery Tomato" check these links...

    GRIN Accessions for Taxon Images of Solanum lycopersicum L.

    How to identify tomatoes - Google Search How to identify tomatoes

    File:Tomatotree.JPG - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia World's largest tomato plant/tree

    Did some planting today, had to cover everything... Calling for 34° tonight :eek:
    Just Dahlia's Avatar
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    #15

    May 19, 2009, 12:21 PM
    Good, tennis ball is good!:)
    I have 2 Super Steak
    2 Early Girl
    2 Mama Mia
    2 Big Beef
    1 San Fransico Fog
    1 Mystery
    I went on the sites you suggested and then studied the leaves and nothing clicked:(
    I did happen to notice that the hanging one is not as large as the others due to lack of fertilizer (I think) the other have tom spikes for them. I have a batch of chicken compost tea that I watered it with, maybe that will help. If not I will go with the Miracle grow. I think once the leaves get a little greener and bigger I might be able to identify it.
    KUXJ's Avatar
    KUXJ Posts: 975, Reputation: 97
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    #16

    May 19, 2009, 02:09 PM
    Well at 4:50am edt, it hit 36° here. As I write (4:44pm edt), its 74° > 45° tonight.

    With just the Dear Wife and me, we don't require many plants, I find it helpful to have toms, peppers, onions, parsley, and zucchini/squash available over winter, I love cooking!

    The smaller containers they sell for the UDTs was a concern of mine, as far as water and nutrient demands go. I can see money out the window every time there's a drip from one of the drain holes.
    For now, I'm sticking with every two weeks for "tea"

    Wait till you see my Friday pix, "better boy" really pushed and its getting a lot darker.

    Best shot I have for S.F. Fog
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    Just Dahlia's Avatar
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    #17

    May 19, 2009, 04:10 PM
    I'm looking forward to them and the others.

    It's just me and my husband here also, but I can 'can' tomatoes and or freeze for sauces. I always plant extra, in case some don't produce much.

    I'm originally from Chicago area, and all you had to do was put a plant in the ground anywhere. It's different here. Once a few years back I had so many toms I was giving them to all the neighbors, but now with the weather change I only get enough for us to enjoy.

    I try something different ever year.:)

    I don't have a lot of room, so the only other thing I have planted are some bush beans and pole beans, and of course Basil and Dill. Oregano, Thyme and Marjoram grow all year round here.
    KUXJ's Avatar
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    #18

    May 24, 2009, 08:56 PM
    News Update from the 'ol Oaken bucket. Or should I say plastic?:

    Measured “Better Boy” (BB) Friday 22nd, and came up with 21”, a gain of 4” since Friday last.
    Measured again after the storm, Sun. 24th, and had 26”.
    The blossoms are an inch long now, and there seems to be a “BB” sized object enveloped in their petals.

    My, My, You can almost hear it grow... :cool:

    The weather in this neck of the woods has finally, I think started to turn to the better for gardening, instead of a Winter/Spring climate, we are over the hump, and heading towards a Spring/Summer environment.

    This weeks day temps staid pretty steady in the mid 80's with night's 'round lower 60's, no rain though till this evening 24th when a small storm went though 'bout 7:30pm edt , sporadic brilliant lighting, with sharp crackly thunder The kind that sends chills down your back, dropped a half inch of rain in 10 minutes, not much wind though.

    Memorial Day's calling for upper 70's... Rest of the week to be mid to upper 70's, lows to lower 60's... Chance of rain/scattered showers/T-storms 60%

    BB is getting his minimum of 6 hours of sun, and I've been thinking/figuring, a way of making an automatic drip watering system to help with the water requirements.

    After reading 'bout blossom end rot on zucchini, being a calcium deficiency, I placed some crushed egg shells from one of my breakfast's on the top of the dirt in the bucket... figured it couldn't hurt, eh?

    Did have a slight scare though this evening. When I went to check on BB after the storm... Instead of growing upright near the bottom rim of the bucket, he was hanging down, and at first I thought the stem had broken during the downpour, but after giving him the once-over, the stem and blossoms look okay... Just received a Heavenly nudge is all.;)

    See Ya 'round the compost pile!
    KUXJ
    Just Dahlia's Avatar
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    #19

    May 27, 2009, 11:46 AM
    Mine doesn't seem to be growing as fast as my other plants, so I might start watering daily by hand with some Miracle grow or I might shove a tom spike in the top of it. I think all my nutrients are dripping out the bottom. It is turning greener though and I do have additional flowers. I'll take a picture in about a week, it doesn't look that different right now.:(

    Edit. We had great cool weather over the weekend 70-80's, but today back to 100' and mid 90's for the rest of the week. I'll have to keep a close eye on all of them.
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    KUXJ Posts: 975, Reputation: 97
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    #20

    May 29, 2009, 01:31 PM
    News from the Bucket:

    I hope this cloudy/rainy weather is almost over, because it sure has slowed Better Boys (BB) growth... Its also exposed a health concern, see pix.

    I'm not sure which type of spot it might even be a canker BB has contracted, it's either Bacterial or Septoria Leaf Spot. I used this link Key for Identifying Vegetable Diseases to try and narrow it down.

    The link has two areas; one covers pickles to squash, the other tomatoes. Click on which variety your concerned about, then after that its self-explanatory. To view a larger pix, click on the link in the Disease column.

    If anyone wants to help ID my problem I'd appreciate it. I'm leaning towards Bacterial Canker. With any of these it means the dirt I used was already infected. The only ways I know of, to control that, would be to either buy sterilized dirt or make your own by cooking it in the oven.

    Ahhh... The Sun has finally come out. After last weeks forecast, I thought we'd see the Sun more than what we have. This'll be the first direct Sun BB has seen for the last four days, and it shows in the tape measurement I made today. Only two inches in vertical growth Now 28”, but four in horizontal, It was more vertical after the storm on the 24th, but as you can see it's starting to go sky-ward again. See pix. BTW I corrected the date stamp.

    Today marks 31days for this un-scientific experiment, and even with the leaf problem, the flowers look okay, and there are two more fruit stems. Hopefully I'll start seeing actual fruit in 10? More days.

    With last night's storm, and this afternoon's we've received 2.8", total for week > 3.7" Officially for week > 0.54"

    See Ya 'round the compost pile!
    KUXJ
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