It happens about this time each year -- reports come in of lots of tomato vines but few fruits. Often the reports note there are lots of blooms but the flowers drop off without setting. What's happening?
Perhaps there could be many causes. We could blame it on too much fertilizer or water. Certainly these make the plants grow more and they seem to forget about fruiting. Or maybe the plants are growing in too much shade. This seems to keep them from fruiting properly too.
But, in most cases this is not what is happening. At this time of the year it is just too hot for tomatoes. The plants like to set their fruits in the 55 to 85 degree range. Once the temperatures go above 85 degrees tomatoes, eggplants and some peppers shut down - they stop producing.
Not that I want to tell you so, but I tried to warm every gardener to plant early even if it meant protecting their plants from cold in early March. This gives the plants time to grow vines, flower and then set fruits before the temperatures go too high. Well, the time has arrived the temperatures are too high.
Some varieties are heat tolerant but even these do not like consistently hot temperatures. It's certainly too late to plant tomatoes now. If you have them planted you may get a few fruits especially from the cherry types. But for the big fruited varieties production time is over. The next planting time is mid August and this is an equally important planting date.