Everyone wants to know when should I pick my tomatoes. Although we all like to see them in this beautiful dark red color we really don’t need to wait that long and sometimes we can actually get in trouble by waiting too long to pick our tomatoes.
Once the tomatoes starts to show a little blush of color we can go ahead and pick that tomato take it into the house and ripen it on the counter or on a tabletop. The tomatoes will then continue to develop this beautiful red color.
If we wait too long we might actually run into some problems that we could avoid like cracking which is a very common problem. Cracking is caused when there is so much more water going into the tomato so that the skin actually splits. We can try to remedy that with either using mulch to try to keep the soil moisture even or by doing regular even waterings. We do see cracking sometimes after a really heavy rain.
Another problem is blossom and rot. This looks like a dark sunken kind of leathery patch and this too can be caused by problems with watering. Sometimes if we leave tomatoes on the vine during extremely hot weather they turn kind of a gaudy orange color instead of the pretty red color that we like. This is because at temperatures over 95 degrees the red pigment doesn’t develop and that is another good reason to let your tomatoes ripen in the house where it is a cooler temperature so we get a nice red color.
You do want to let them fully develop that beautiful red color before you refrigerate them. Once you put the tomatoes in the refrigerator that stops the ripening process. If you have a lot of tomatoes you can go ahead and either can or freeze those tomatoes to use in the winter months.
There are so many things that you can do with frozen and canned tomatoes if you ever have any questions on tips about growing or preserving tomatoes you can also contact your local Extension Office.