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So many of us grow tomatoes. Whether we have tomatoes planted in our garden, greenhouse, or in pots on the deck, gardeners just love growing tomatoes!
But what can we do for our tomatoes when a sudden frost is expected or the nights suddenly become a lot cooler?
Tomatoes are heat lovers and they do not like the cold at all.
But first, do they really need to come off the vine? Is there any way you can add some frost protection to your tomato plants?
If that won’t be enough, then yes go ahead and pick your tomatoes. If in doubt, PICK them.
The last thing you want is to head out to the garden one morning to find your plants have been hit with frost.
Tomatoes do not like frost and even one light frost can be enough to kill your plants.
The Best Way to Ripen Green Tomatoes
Need to pick all your tomatoes because cold weather is coming? Got lots of green tomatoes that need to be picked from the vine? Here’s an awesome trick to quickly ripen tomatoes.
Will Green Tomatoes Ripen off the Vine?
You bet they will. Tomatoes are often ripened off the vine. Chances are, they were picked green and turned red before you bought any at the grocery store.
And, you’ve probably already put a slightly green tomato in a windowsill at some point, right? Actually, that’s not really the best place for it for than a day. Here’s a better idea.
Ripen Tomatoes in a Paper Bag
Carefully pick your tomatoes and place them in paper bags. Yup, a big paper bag. The ones you get from the grocery store if you ask for paper bags.
You do save those bags, right? Those paper bags can be used and upcycled for so many things! Including…yup, garden produce!
Try to NOT bruise your tomatoes! Pick them carefully and place them in the bag carefully – don’t drop them in there as they can easily become damaged.
You can fill the bag almost all the way, if you’re very careful with the tomatoes. But use lots of bags!
Just depends on how many tomatoes you have. The important thing is to be able to preserve tomatoes – you’ve worked hard enough tending to your plants all season.
The Trick to Using a Paper Bag to Ripen Tomatoes
OK here’s the trick. ALWAYS put one or two red tomatoes in the bag along with all the green ones.
If you don’t have any red tomatoes at all, then use a banana or an apple instead. Add it to the bag, then close the bag up tight and set it aside.
Check the bag every single day, as the tomatoes will ripen quicker than you may think.
Pull out any tomatoes that are nice and ripe and leave the others in there to ripen.
You may also find you need to do some rearranging of the tomatoes, in case the lower ones are getting too much weight on them.
You’ll find that within a few days, all your tomatoes will be ripe. Now you can use them to make home made Tomato Sauce (canning instructions too) or put up a case of the best Salsa you will ever eat (canning instructions for the Salsa are there too).
So give this a try if you find you need to ripen green tomatoes quickly!
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