Cherokee Purple

Discussion in 'Gardening & Plant Propagation' started by rocket, Jul 31, 2006.

  1. rocket

    rocket Well-Known Member

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    This is my first year growing Cherokee Purple and overall I've been really happy with it. Very productive, great taste, and bigger fruit than I was expecting. My one problem is that almost every fruit seems to develop deep, radial cracks spreading out from the stem end. The cracks scar over and I just cut those parts away, but I'm still wondering if I can prevent it somehow. None of my other tomatoes is having this problem.
     
  2. suburbanite

    suburbanite Well-Known Member

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    I'm growing cherokee purple tomatoes in an 18 gallon tub, first time ever growing tomatoes. But neither it nor the black krim are producing much--the black krim has set two tomatoes so far but none on the cherokee.

    We had two weeks of 100+F heat which just ended about 4 days ago. Is that why there is so little fruit set? I had read that these tomatoes are vulnerable to sunscald, which has been an issue with my peppers, so I have them up by the house where they get sun until noon but not afterward. Should I move them to a sunnier location?

    My growing season here extends at least to mid-October, and some of the commercial farms in the area plant corn until mid-July for November harvest. I grow 'fall' crops like lettuce, carrots, and beets through the winter because the ground never freezes here.

    Thanks for any advice. I'm guessing I'll run into rocket's problem too if my plant ever sets fruit.
     

  3. rocket

    rocket Well-Known Member

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    Hi, Suburbanite. Sounds like you're not too far from me. Temps here for those two weeks were 110 - 115, and mine has still produced a ton of tomatoes. If you don't pinch the suckers back, I would think that there would be enough foliage to keep sunscald from being a problem. But I do think that giving them some more sun would help. Morning-only sun is probably not as much as tomatoes would like.
     
  4. marvella

    marvella Well-Known Member

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    usually, uneven watering causing splits in tomatoes, like getting a lot of rain followed by a long dry spell. when it rains again, it causes them to split.
     
  5. kbshorts

    kbshorts Well-Known Member

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    This is my first year with CP as well, my experience has been very similar to your's Rocket. Great yield for an heirloom but there is a lot of rough ones and they do seem prone to crack but they sure make a great sandwich. I have struggled with a number of heirlooms, blight is a big problem here. These CPs are becoming one of my favorites and I'm sure I will find room for a couple plants in future seasons.
    KB
     
  6. suburbanite

    suburbanite Well-Known Member

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    Thanks Rocket. I'll move them tomorrow. I'm so glad I put them in containers. :)
     
  7. rocket

    rocket Well-Known Member

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    No problem, Sub.

    And yes, marvella, uneven watering was my first thought for the splitting, too. But they're in a well-drained raised bed, well-mulched with grass clippings, and get 45 minutes of drip irrigation both morning and evening. None of my other varieties, including ones just as large, have any cracking problems at all.

    I agree with you about the sandwiches, kb. But I can't eat that many sandwiches! :) So mine have also been making some really great sauce.
     
  8. dk_40207

    dk_40207 Well-Known Member

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    Our CP s are doing this as well. I think part of our problem is the watering issue or calcium deficiency, but the purples seem to all crack the same way.The other varieties ted to get scabby bottoms or very lobey bottoms.. They are still great, though....
     
  9. Pony

    Pony Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I experienced cracking with the CPs and the BKs, and just chalked it up to the type of tomato. :shrug: I'm more into flavor than looks. I suppose if I was taking them to market, it might be more of a concern...

    Nope. Now that I think about it, I would tell people, "Deal. It tastes good, and everything doesn't have to be pretty to be good."

    I'm snarky that way. :rolleyes:

    Pony!
     
  10. rocket

    rocket Well-Known Member

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    LOL! Go right ahead and be your snarky self, Pony.

    But I do agree that the cracks don't necessarily detract from what a good tomato it is. I just wondered whether CP's are prone to them or they were caused by something I was doing. I guess it's sounding like it is pretty common. Thanks everybody.
     
  11. IowaLez

    IowaLez Glowing in The Sun Supporter

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    Many varieties have problems with cracking and catfacing. Others are resistant.

    "Abnormally cold weather during flowering is known to enhance this disorder. Also, high soil nitrogen levels and any disturbance to the flowering parts during anthesis can increase catfacing. Susceptibility to cracking is related to the strength and stretching ability of the fruit's epidermis. Periods of slow fruit groth followed by fast growth resulting from wide differences in day and night temperatures and a dry period followed by heavy rain or irrigation are conducive to this disorder. The best way to reduce losses from this disorder is to plant resistant varieties. Proper irrigation and nutritional management, and temperature management can also reduce losses."

    "Tomato Diseases" Seminis Vegetable Seeds, Inc, 1997. The ultimate reference book on tomato diseasees I've ever seen.
     
  12. Kee Wan

    Kee Wan Well-Known Member

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    I have rouble wiht my CP's too.....the same thing - catfacing. You may be able to mitigate it by pulling them at teh first sight of blush adn letting them ripen on the windowsil - that worked rather well - although not perfectly for me.

    But, they taste the same - cracked or not. :baby04:
     
  13. Paquebot

    Paquebot Well-Known Member

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    Cherokee Purple tomatoes are prone to shoulder cracking under any growing condition. It comes with the variety. Catfacing on Cherokee Purple is not common under those same conditions. That may happen to almost every tomato variety but mainly early fruit from over-sized "daisy" blossoms. Those often are unable to fully self-pollinate like a normal blossom. Excessive force when watering with a hose will also do that by washing pollen out of the blossoms.

    Martin