The Q&A Archives: Keeping tomatoes bearing fruit in warm climates

Question: I have Burpee Big Boy and Burpee Delicious, tomatoes still flowering and bearing fruit. I just picked two today, on 2/20/97, and I started these plants last year on 2/1/96. Is it unsual for tomato plants to be able to last this long? They are getting new leaves and many new flowers. They seem to be getting ready for another year! Dan Wein N. Charleston, SC

Answer: Tomatoes are perennial plants in warm climates, so it's not unusual that yours is still alive indoors. You can keep it going for another year by cutting it back to stimulate new growth, or just leave it as it is, make sure the leaves don't have any diseases or insects on them. Put them outside in the garden after all danger of frost is passed and you can keep them either in pots or transplanted into the garden. Fertilize the plants with compost in spring, sidedress with a complete fertilizer such as 10-10-10 at flowering time, keep them well watered and mulch with hay or straw.

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