Thursday, June 5, 2008

TCSI: Tomato Crime Scene Investigation

Last week I pushed my luck. I saw some tomatoes that were close to being ripe, but I wanted to let them fully ripen on the vine. Why else do you grow your own tomatoes but to eat freshly picked, vine ripened lovelies?

Well, this is why else. Because some untoward characters will come along and eviscerate the fully ripe ones. Then you learn that homegrown tomatoes that begin the ripening outside and finish it safely inside on your counter are much more tasty than the fully ripe ones that are ripped open and eaten by ants.

These criminals aren't even nice enough to hide the evidence. They just maim the best ones, rendering them inedible and then take off.

They went after my first two Better Boys and my second Black Krim.

I tried to figure out a way to salvage the tomatoes but the damage was so extensive that I decided to just save them for their seeds.

I thought about rounding up the usual suspects and interrogating them with the bright sun shining in their eyes and asking them to 'fess up, but as I looked closely at the damaged goods, I saw that the culprit had left his calling card.

What, you don't see it? You think I am crazy? Maybe a closeup will help.

I know I can't be the only one that sees a squirrel on the side of that tomato.

And believe if he shows up again to eat any more of what is shaping up to be a meager harvest, I will do more than blog about him!


  1. Oh Vertie!

    That's just awful! You may just have to invent a combo ant/squirrel trap. (My dog will volunteer for squirrel duty.)

  2. Last year that was our tomato killer - some bastard squirrel. It was rampant. My wife was commiserating with all the little old men while waiting in line at our local little Italian green grocer's. Seems there were organized gangs of squirrels reeking havoc on unsuspecting tomatoes last year.

    They seem to attack only the side of the tomato we can't see. Sneaky cheating liars. I'd like to replace my BLTs this summer with SLTs.

  3. Girl, I feel your pain. I am experimenting this year with putting pantyhose on the tomaotoes.Yes, it really dresses them up :-), but its supposed to keep the birds and bugs from drilling into the fruit. My tomaotoes are little behind yours but so far no critter damage. Knock on wood....

  4. Grrrr.

    Did you read the post Annie linked to about gardeners striking back against pesky critters? Indeed! It's time to raise our hoes. (Suddenly I got an image of the mob with pitch forks. Like that.)