Why Are My Tomatoes Not Turning Red? The Reasons & 6 Ways to Ripen Them

Written by Kristiyana Burdeva

Why is it taking so long for my tomatoes to turn red? How to ripen green tomatoes? The most common reasons for slow growth and 6 ways to turn your tomatoes red successfully. 

Why Are My Tomatoes Not Turning Red & How to Ripen Them?

why are my tomatoes not turning red why are my tomatoes staying green and not turning red

Do your tomatoes seem to be not ripening? Are you starting to get worried that they might never turn red? This is a common concern in the gardening world, as there are a few factors that can influence the colour and size of your tomato fruits. Knowing how to handle such situations is a key part of the tomato growing guide that any expert or beginner gardener should be familiar with. However, if this is the first time your tomatoes have shown signs of neglected growth, don’t you worry, as today at Deavita.net we will provide you with expert tips and advice on how to proceed in such cases. Which are the causes for your tomatoes not to ripe? Are there ways to turn green tomatoes red? Get your answers now.

Why Is It Taking So Long for My Tomatoes to Turn Red?

Here are some of the most common reason for your tomatoes not turning red:

  • Temperatures over 85 °F/29 °C
  • Temperatures below 50 °F/10 °C
  • Overfertilizing your tomatoes with nitrogen
  • Too many fruits developing simultaneously
  • Overwatering your tomatoes
  • Overgrown tomato plants

How Do I Get My Tomatoes to Turn Red?

how to turn green tomatoes red how do i get my tomatoes to turn red

So now that you know what could be the reason for your tomatoes not ripening properly, how can you fix this? Just so you know, most tomato fruits will turn red 6–8 weeks after their flowers have been pollinated. If that doesn’t happen, here are some tips you can follow for turning them red:

How to Turn Tomatoes Red in Cold Climates?

Are you growing your tomatoes in a place where the weather is usually chilly? That might be the reason for your fruits not turning red. In such cases, you can resolve to putting your tomatoes inside a cage of an even determinate variety. This will aid your plants in keeping them upright and exposing them to maximum sunlight, hence stimulating their healthy growth.

Remove Some of the Tomato Fruits for Extra Growth

Too many tomato fruits growing at the same time can be one of the reasons for your tomatoes not turning red. Unfortunately, in this case, you will have to remove about a fourth of the total number of tomato fruits if you want your plant to thrive. Better yet, if late summer approaches and your tomato plant is still developing flowers, pick them off so that your plant can concentrate its resources on ripening the fruits that are already in development.

When Tomatoes Not Turning Red, Prune & Top Them

Most gardeners know that proper pruning can be extremely beneficial for most plants, as it keeps them from overgrowing and stimulates a healthy and strong development process. When it comes to tomatoes, make sure you trim all suckers, and don’t tie your tomato plants to their supports until the first flowers begin to appear. To accelerate fruit ripening, top your tomato plants by removing any new growth late in the season.

Surround Your Tomato Plants with Plastic Mulch

Did you know that plastic mulch can speed up the maturing process of unripe tomatoes? While all types of mulch are stimulating for plants, plastic like aluminium foil, silver tarps and red plastic will reflect the light onto the tomatoes, resulting in a boost in carbohydrates and a faster growing process. Place such mulches around the base of the tomato plants or vertically on their north side.

How to Know When to Stop Fertilizing Your Tomatoes?

As we mentioned before, overfertilization can be one of the main causes for green, unripe tomatoes. But how to know when exactly should you stop using a tomato fertilizer? Take notice of your tomato plants, and as soon as they have a decent crop of little fruits, that’s when you should quit fertilizing them. If you continue doing so, your plants will grow, but at the expense of their fruits. Also, when using a tomato fertilizer, make sure you get one low in nitrogen, as such are better for the plant.

Also read: Why Water Tomatoes with Salt Water? The Pros and Cons of Salty Watering!

How to Ripen Green Tomatoes Indoors?

If fall is close to arrive and temperatures keep getting low, chances are that your tomatoes won’t ripe any more on the vine. However, you can try turning them red indoors! As long as the fruits are showing a little bit of colour or are a bit soft to touch, the ripening process can be successful. Here’s what to do: Take your harvested tomatoes and place them in a space with consistent temperature of 60-65 °F/15-18 °C (like your basement). When it comes to sunlight, tomatoes don’t necessarily need it to turn red, so you can place them in a paper bag with a banana or apple to speed up the ripening process.

how to turn green tomatoes red indoors tips for ripening green tomatoes


Embed image

Copy this code to embed this photo on your site: Large image: Small image: BB Forum tag: