Post Hurricane Tomato Explosion

By Published On: August 21st, 20231.6 min readCategories: Garden, Photos

A dud by tropical storm standards, Hilary dropped enough water to make the tomatoes split

A hand holding a tomato that has split from too much water

Hurricane Hilary gave so much water to the tomatoes that they’re exploding

Here in the desert-like climate of San Diego, it doesn’t rain much between April and November.

Actually, it hasn’t rained at all since May 5th, when we received barely 1/10th of an inch of water. As a result, the gardens are all watered by drip irrigation. Limited amounts of water delivered right to the plant’s roots in the evening or early morning, ensure they’ve got enough to support healthy growth with no waste of a precocious resource.

Normally, this works pretty good, especially in the vegetable garden in mid-summer when all the tomatoes are coming in. Metering the water out extends the flowering period which, in turn, stretches the harvest out over a longer time so we’re not inundated with barrels of ripe tomatoes that need processing right away or we lose them.

Unless, of course, there’s a freak hurricane tropical storm.

Hurricane Hilary was more or less a dud by tropical storm standards — warm, humid, and a slow, fat rain with a few wind gusts now and then, but otherwise uneventful. But that fat, slow rain and temperatures in the upper 70’s must have been like a classic Las Vegas all-you-can-eat-and-drink buffet to the tomatoes because when I surveyed the post-storm situation this morning, I was confronted with row after row of tomato plants with fruit half ripe splitting open because of all the water they’d absorbed in the past few hours.

As I was standing there examining one tomato, another, just to my right, literally exploded. Popped open and squirting seeds like someone had stepped on it.

Now we’re doing a hurry-up in the vegetable garden to pick everything we can before it all erupts into a big tomato-y mess.

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About the Author

author avatar
Sage Osterfeld
I’m just a guy with nearly an acre of dirt, a nice little mid-century ranch house and a near-perfect climate. But in my mind I’m a landscaper survivalist craftsman chef naturalist with a barbeque the size of a VW and my own cable TV show. I like to write about the stuff I build, grow and see here at Sage's Acre.

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