Since You Asked: Save those tomatoes

Gah! I love my tomatoes and had some good production this summer but some are still green on the vine.

With frost warnings already here and freezes sure to follow, should I leave them on the vine and takes my chances, or is there something I can do to ensure they don't get ruined?

— Art J., Talent

Tomatoes are heat-lovers and you have to worry about them at the start and end of the growing season.

Thankfully for tomato lovers like you (and many of us at Since You Asked's Horticulture Division), the Rogue Valley offers plenty of hot summer weather to give them time to produce a good crop.

Under ideal conditions — mid-70s — ripen your tomatoes on the vine.

When it is superhot, harvest them every day or two when color has started to develop and ripen them further indoors.

On the day before a hard freeze is expected, harvest all your mature green fruit.

Wrap the tomatoes individually in paper and, if possible, store in a cool area (60 to 65°F) and they will ripen slowly over the next several weeks.

You can also leave the fruit on the vines and uproot the entire plant to hang in a sheltered area protected from frost or cold temps, where fruit continues to ripen.

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