Weeks 9: Pollinating Tomatoes and Peppers (And a frost hint!)

Hey everyone!

Everyone must be getting itchy to plant those gardens! Me too! BUT, regardless how nice it is outside, be sure to check your climate! I live on the North Shore of Lake Superior, so it can easily get frost into June. Rule of thumb? Wait until after the Full Moon in June. Even then, be aware frost can still hit if it is a cool spring. Have a cover near by just in case it looks like it will be cold. If you do get frost and have not covered your garden, here is a little hint that MAY save your precious plants. If you can catch the frost BEFORE the sun hits the plants, spray the frost off with water. It doesn’t always work, but it has worked. It has to be before the sun hits them though. That is tricky in June when the sun is up really early!

So, my greenhouse is BURSTING with plants. Everything looks fantastic! And the best part? My tomatoes and peppers are flowering! Some people are concerned that these plants may not get pollinated. No worries! I have the most simple solution ever. Very lightly shake the plant. It is a shake that is much like a soft wind, a hummingbird buzzing near by, a critter bumping the plant, a butterfly landing on the flower… that kind of light shake. If you check out the video above, you will see me demonstrate how to do this. (I did the video 3 days ago and mentioned in the video that I would likely see tomatoes starting soon.. well! guess what? I have tomatoes starting!)

Why? Well, the flowers of peppers and tomatoes are both male and female, thus self-pollinating. The male portion at the base of the flower and the female coming out. The flowers typically point down, and with good reason. When the plant is bumped, the pollen drops down and you have pollination.

You can use Q-Tips to help the pollen down, but truly I have never needed to do that and have always had peppers and tomatoes starting WAY before they leave the greenhouse with the method I described above. That’s it! Easy, peasy blog this week! Enjoy!

Happy Gardening!


P.s. If you have questions, please feel free to drop me a line at shyanne.leah@gmail.com