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Nature always finds a way! Empty Nature always finds a way!

Post  duhh on 11/12/2010, 12:13 pm

I've been toying with the idea of over wintering my toms so I can clone them come spring and thought it was going to be super hard, but now I'm not so sure. I was out in my garden this morning and found a baby tom plant in with my spinach! I should have taken a pic, but was so excited and wanted it away from my spinach that I transplanted it before thinking.

The only thing I can think of is that it grew from the tom clippings from when I prune my toms! Its a new bed, and I didn't use any of my own compost. It is all mels mix from the bag.

I also found one in my peas, but that is in a different bed that had toms in it last year. That one could be a "volunteer" plant from last springs maters I'm thinking.

To make a long story short I am very encouraged now about cloning toms for spring! If this one made it without any special care, then I should be able to get a few with extra care right?
duhh
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Post  Lavender Debs on 11/13/2010, 11:00 am

Hi Duhh (love your handle!)

It seems like Arizona should be an easier place to clone/over winter than many other garden homes. I am not sure what you are doing to "clone" but here is what has worked for me in the past.

Clip off the top of your current tomato plant in late fall before you put the garden to bed for winter (do you do that in Arizona?) Set the top (or even a sucker that has a couple of branches) into damp vermiculite to root, transfer to a gallon size pot of MM (Mel's Mix, not Middle Mamma)after roots develop and set into a cold frame with a garden heating pad for the winter. The frame needs to be in a well protected area with easy access. The back wall should be quite tall with a steep slope for the south facing window to allow as much winter light as possible as well as head room (room to grow, even though it will be slow growth). Check for water and head room occasionally. In spring it can go into the garden far earlier than seedlings.

Usually by October my head is back to school and I forget to do this. I should put it on my calendar to try next year.

I got the idea from Dick Raymond of Garden Way
Lavender Debs
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Post  duhh on 11/14/2010, 8:42 pm

My handle is a joke from high school. everyone mispronounces my name, so I usually tell people to just think duh and you got it.

Thanks for the info! I hadn't really tried to clone any plants yet, have just been studying about it. The vermiculite idea is what I have been leaning towards. I was just shocked when One or maybe 2 plants took root on thier own without any help!

So far I haven't had to put the garden to bed. We are still enjoying 70's during the day and high 40's and 50 @ night. Great gardening weather. I even still have some zukes going. Hoping that I will only have to cover the garden a couple times when it really frosts.

duhh
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