How We Grow The Best Tasting Tomatoes In The Midwest.
Late March the plants were removed from the Greenhouse to wagons to harden off during the day and in the barn at night at approx. 35 to 40 degree temp. with constant moving air. There is always a window from early March to early April where the soil is dry enough to work and ridge.The farm will plant it's first Red Duce tomatoes on the ridges. During wet times the tractor tires are in the mud but the top of the ridge is nice and dry, ready for planting. You can do the same thing with a tiller and hand rake.
FIELD PLANTING AND COVERING
Our Red Duce Tomato plants were planted April 11th and Low Tunnel Covered on April 20th with a product called "Seed Guard" which warms the soil and plants at approx. 15 degrees during the day and 5 degrees at night. This will protect the plants from the extreme cold, wind, frost and even hail.
We planted and 1st tied on May 2nd. On May 15th we tied for the 2nd time and covered with "Hail Guard". The netting is placed between the 2nd and 3rd rows of plants every 4'. The idea is not to totally stop the hail stones, but merely to break the wind driven speed and allow them to fall harmlessly onto and around the plants. The 2 ft. tall plants are just beginning to show pea size fruit and should be mature enough to ripen in 32 days. We could be picking steadily by June 25.
On June 7th our 1st acre of Red Duce tomato plants, planted April 10th, are in the process of putting on their 3rd cluster of fruit. The first set appeared May 25th and should be mature enough to start ripening around June 20th and be ready to sell at the Market by June 26th.
The 1st acre of 65 day Red Duce tomatoes planted April 10th will be mature enough to ripen for our June 26th opening.
Early Planting, crazy weather and the timing of the July 2nd full moon has triggered a mass ripening of the 1st acre of our Red Duce Tomatoes.
We Have Tomatoes!