Tuesday 1 August 2017

Full water tanks

For the first time since I put them in place three months ago, my water tanks are brimming over. I haven't had to use the tap outside the plot since they first got a decent amount of rainwater in them - they take drainage from the polytunnel - but the levels have got perilously low at times. The two holes I plugged in the big one aren't leaking a drop.

The plugs are just a nut and bolt, with a washer and a piece of rubber from an old bicycle tyre on each side, and glue to ensure a proper seal.

I'm having a lot of trouble with blossom drop on the tomatoes, probably due to the temperature in the tunnel getting too high at times. Some fruit have set, but they're very late and I haven't had a ripe one yet. I planted a few giant toms, and the most obvious thing about them is their tendency to fasciation, when the growing point divides so there are multiple dividing cells rather than the normal single cell. I've seen it before in Black Seaman; it affects flowers as well as stems, and a fasciate flower produces a fasciate fruit which is a lot bigger than a normal fruit. That explains why giant toms are so distorted; combine fasciation with a very large fruit and you have your giant.

This is what one of the flowers looks like; it's several times the size of the normal ones which I pulled off the other day. If you restrict the number of fruit it makes, then the surviving ones will grow bigger.