Late in November, as we picked the last tomatoes of the season, we noticed new flowers and green growth among the dry, dying branches. There were different branches at almost stage of the plant’s life, from brand new branches to bright yellow flowers to tomatoes of different shades of green, yellow, and red.
Varying temperatures around that time must have caused some of the plant to die while the rest kept growing. Tomatoes cannot survive temperatures below freezing, and we had already had our first frost. Any part of the plant that survives will stop growing and the fruit will not ripen at temperatures below 55 degrees Fahrenheit. Tomatoes also have a maximum temperature of 90 degrees Fahrenheit for flowers to turn into fruit.
This was not the only place we saw plants both dying and growing. In the herb bed, the basil had become dry twigs, yet the mint was thriving all around it now that the basil no longer blocked the sunlight from the soil below where basil plants once were.