In the wee hours of yesterday morning a wave of frost rolled over the field and gardens closest to the house. I had, perhaps instinctively, cut and brought in for drying all the sweet and Thai basil the day before so no loss there. Hardest hit were the Canna Lilies, cantaloupe, zinnias and, sadly, my overgrown jungle of Amethyst Jewel cherry tomatoes.
Wanna know what happens when you try to pull a cherry tomato plant after frost?
The tomatoes fall. With the lightest touch, they fall like marble size pieces of purple hail. And, I discovered, they make a nice ‘pop’ when you happen to step on any that land in the grass on its way to the wheelbarrow and compost pile.
Here is a portion of my frost touched cherry tomato bed, glowing in this morning’s light.
Yes, they tend to do that. Ours get chilled so slowly though that there are only a few tomatoes by the time they actually get frosted. I was just talking to someone about how we get very few tomatoes that do not ripen for pickled or fried green tomatoes. We either grow green zebra tomatoes (which make small and sqishy slices if they ripen) (You know, you can’t tell if they are green when they are battered anyway.) or pick green tomatoes and pretend they didn’t ripen. Does the ‘pop’ of the fallen fruit suggest that the fruit is a bit tougher than what grows when the weather is warm? Bigger tomatoes are tougher later in the season, which works even better for pickling and frying.