Pollination of Tomatoes - Knowledgebase Question

Midvale, UT
Question by cbryeth
July 16, 2007
I have absolutely no bees in the complex where I live. How can I get my tomatoes to set on fruit? My plants are healthy by no fruit.


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Answer from NGA
July 16, 2007

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Tomatoes are relatively easy to pollinate because pollen doesn't need to be transferred from one flower to another; it simply needs to be encouraged to drop down from the male parts of the flower onto the female parts. You can accomplish this by sharply tapping the branch with open flowers. This should dislodge the pollen and it should fall onto the female parts resulting in complete pollination. If you want to try this method on one branch and play bee on another, you can see which technique works best. On a second branch with open flowers, take a small camel's hair brush and visit each of the open flowers by gently twirling the brush inside each flower. This should transfer enough pollen to result in a fruit. In addition to getting tomatoes, your efforts will also entertain your neighbors!

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