Answer: I think it's just an off year for tomatoes in your gardening region. Gardeners who regularly prune their tomato plants swear by it. The process removes vegetative (non-productive growth) from the plants which redirects the plants' energy into producing flowers and fruit. The suckers do not flower or bear fruit so pinching and pruning should not reduce the number of fruits your plants can produce. I think it has just been a rotten year for tomatoes.
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