The Q&A Archives: Reasons for Huge Plants but Few Fruits

Question: It's that time again. I am planting again. I ran into a few problems with my first garden last year and I am hoping to avoid a few of them this year. One thing that really puzzled me were huge plants and hardly any fruit....huh? My okra grew aproximately 12 ft. tall (should have gotten pics) but it was mostly stem (trunk). I had a similar thing with my tomato plants. A lot of plant and hardly any fruit. I was told it could be from planting in a new spot? Over feeding? I used Miracle Gro. Is there anything you can suggest? Teresa Carr (novice gardener) Oklahoma City, OK

Answer: I have a feeling you were overfeeding your garden just a tad! When plants grow lush and do not blossom or fruit, it's a sign of too much nitrogen. Plants are in heaven, but it's no Eden for the gardener who wants tomatoes! I suggest having your soil tested. It may seem like a lot of money to spend when you are on a limited budget, but it can save you bundles in fertilizer and time, and takes you one step furter towards successful gardening. Your soil test results will specify how much of what sort of fertilizer your crops need. As always, plenty of organic matter and compost are the best foundation for healthy plants. For a soil test, contact your extension office at 405-278-1125.

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