unripe peppers, tomatoes, and frost

joannaqcw(NY 4/5)October 5, 2011

Frost is predicted tonight and tomorrow night. I still have quite a few green tomatoes' we usually bring these inside individually (we've tried laying them out on trays or wrapping them in newspaper), and some ripen while others rot. Any better practices for bringing green tomatoes in? Does pulling the whole plant help?

Also I have some peppers which are supposed to turn red; some are greenish-yellow now, others orangey-yellow. Is there anything i can do to make them more likely to turn color inside?

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I've read on the forums that you can pull the whole tomato plant and hang it upside down, they'll ripen. Not sure that will work with peppers though.

The orange-yellow peppers will ripen inside if you pick them, not sure about the greenish-yellow. Is there a way you can cover the plants? Weight the edges of the tarp/drop cloth down, put jugs of water in between the rows, it will help keep them warmer.

I just finished pulling out my tomatoes, plan on covering my peppers tonight - next 2 nights frost advisory but then next week will be in the 70's with lows around 50 so if they survive til the weekend, we should be able to get some more ripe ones.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2011 at 12:30PM
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Peppers will happily live inside. I grow mine in pots on my patio. Next week they will be moved onto my 3 season porch. And then in early December they will be moved into my living room. I don't get a whole lot of peppers thru the winter months, but I do get a few, and the plants produce better the following summer.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2011 at 1:26PM
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wertach zone 7-B SC

Just a thought, not sure if it would work with toms and peppers. The peach and strawberry farmers around here turn on their sprinklers when we have a late frost in the spring to keep the blooms and/or fruit from being damaged.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2011 at 1:44PM
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kriswrite(zone 8)

I always pick them and place them individually (single layer) in a dark pantry. They ALWAYS ripen, but some do not ripen until December.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2011 at 8:33PM
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We don't have any frost in the immediate forecast but I was waiting on my Striped German tomato to give me at least ONE ripe one before the season is over. I put the plant in late (it was a mercy rescue from an end of season clearance). It only now has fully grown fruit. They are at the glossy stage that comes before color change. Our weather turned cool and rainy these last few days. I dunnnooooooo...... :P
Weather forecast says it will dry up but it is still a race against time or Nature, if you will.

    Bookmark   October 5, 2011 at 11:36PM
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It always is!

Weather.com says it's supposed to be 36 out now, but the outdoor temp on my thermostat says 43. They installed the sensor in a somewhat protected area just outside my back door (I can't trust it after doing laundry since it's right by the dryer vent - don't know if it's warmer right now b/c of leaking house heat). But inside the uninsulated, vented garage is 51. So we may have escaped frost last night. Early tomorrow is going to be the worst though.

How did your peppers do joanne? Did you cover them or just pick?

    Bookmark   October 6, 2011 at 6:54AM
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lpinkmountain(5b/6a border PA)

I pulled my tom. plants one year and hung them upside down on a clothesline I had in the basement. Some did ripen. About the same as the other method, but a mess as they shed leaves onto the basement floor. They ripened a little faster maybe than by storing them individually in the dark. Nothing dramatic.

    Bookmark   October 7, 2011 at 12:50PM
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My peppers look good, going to be in the 80's this w/e so they're staying uncovered, will probably be warm enough to get more ripe ones over the next week (though end of the week will be 60's and raining).

Still waiting to hear from OP...

    Bookmark   October 7, 2011 at 6:18PM
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