I just came across an intriguing post on the Your Small Kitchen Garden blog: The Vine Ripened Tomato Lie. With a title like that, I had to read on! Here’s an excerpt:
Earlier I said, “…unless you have absolute control over how much rain falls and how often…” You do have such control! Quite simply: don’t let your tomatoes ripen on the vine. When pink first appears on a tomato’s skin, pick the tomato and set it inside out of direct sunlight.
The central premise is that leaving tomatoes on the vine to ripen a) doesn’t make them any tastier, and b) risks all sorts of damage, like cracking and green shoulders. It’s a radical concept, but the pictures will be familiar to any of us tomato gardeners…
As we say in the blogosphere, go read the whole thing.