Livingston County, Michigan
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A resident is growing cherry tomatoes in pots in soilless mix inside his home. He read in a guide to growing tomatoes ("Tomato Plant Master" by Yara?) that adding excess nitrogen while the plants are fruiting will make the tomatoes "puffy" instead of nice and firm. I believe the same guide said that he should reduce nitrogen before or as the plants begin to flower.
His questions are:
Should the nitrogen that he is adding to the tomato pots (as part of a fertilizer mix) be reduced before or as the tomato plants begin to flower, or can he continue the same fertilizer regime that he was using during the vegetative growth stage?
Is there any truth to the idea that the tomatoes will become "puffy" if the plants are given excess nitrogen during the fruiting stage?
Some additional background: As was mentioned, the resident is growing cherry tomatoes in a soilless potting mix inside his home. He seems to try to use only organic products. He mixed organic compost into the pots and adds compost tea once a week. His fertilizer regime is to add a dry, solid organic fertilizer (Dr. Earth) to the pots once every two weeks, at a rate of about 1 tsp. per gallon. This organic fertilizer includes ingredients such as bone meal and kelp meal. If he was going to reduce the nitrogen, he could add less of the same solid fertilizer mix, or use other separate nutrient sources. Seaweed extract was mentioned.
The resident would appreciate specifics on how nitrogen affects tomato plant and fruit growth and how best to apply fertilizer in his indoor-plant growing situation.
Livingston County Michigan almost 2 years ago
As a farmer, I have been cold pack and pressure canning; dehydrating; smoking and freezing foods for over 40 years. I have been asked countless times to teach others. Now that I am semi-retired, I have time to do so. With our current laws in Michigan, most of these processes fall outside of the Cottage industry laws, unless done in a commercial kitchen (most of which in my opinion are unspeakably filthy). There are no laws or standards that I have found which list or require qualifications or certifications to teach these processes, and Michigan no longer offers (or recognizes?) the Master canner certification. With obvious liability concerns, what steps can be taken to verify the teacher has up-to-date training and qualified to teach these processes safely, and further, what pointers and/or Companies would provide liability insurance? With the march to organics and healthier eating, we have a massive surge of people who want to not only grow, but preserve their own food. Most people prefer hands-on training...any advice or assistance you can provide would be greatly appreciated.
Livingston County Michigan about 1 year ago
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