A while back I received a gift of red plastic mulch. It’s supposed to increase yields by helping plants develop and ripen their fruit faster – something to do with reflecting a certain spectrum of light, which in turn triggers photosynthesis to stimulate rapid growth and development. Whatever…Lee Valley Tools says it worked for them (of course, they’re the ones selling it!) and I’m willing to try almost anything that promises better yields for little work!
It’s not really a proper experiment, as I ought to have a control group of plants at the same level of development growing in the same conditions without the red plastic mulch – but I don’t.
The best I can do is comparing plants of the same variety (Big Beef) that are the same age and size when I applied the mulch. The control group has the advantage of growing inside my greenhouse – so given the cool, wet summer we are having I would expect the greenhouse plants to do better than the outside plants.
If the mulched tomato plants grow and produce better than the greenhouse tomato plants, then I will call the red plastic mulch a success. Check back, I’ll let you know!