Have you tried it? Stripping back the leaves of your hot house veges. I have spent a few hours this week doing exactly this in our hot house at work and I am already amazed at how much better everything is looking. I have customers who have grown tomatoes for years and I am not shy to ask their advice and opinion on the subject of growing the best tomatoes, even though I have been growing my own tomatoes for some years. The single most scary (but valuable) piece of advise I have ever been given is to stripe some of the leaves off my plants. Each year I get a little bit more brave (at the art of stripping). There are a few good reasons to follow this practice
- To create more air flow around the base of the plant, as the temperature rises and the humidity increases , moisture will settle and form mildew
- Hot House bugs love nothing more than a warm humid place to breed, and where better to lay their eggs than down low and out of sight. By the time they have hatched you have a whole lot more than double trouble.
- The more green leaf you leave on the tomato the more flowers it will produce however given the length of our growing season more flowers doesn't mean more fruit. So its important to ensure that the plant has an opportunity to put enough energy into the developing fruit.
- Only take the branches off below the first truss of fruit.
- Make sure your cut is clean
- Never take any more than 1/3 of the greenery from any plant.