Thursday, 22 May 2014

Tomatoes


I bought three tomato plants today so that I can have fresh, vine ripened tomatoes in my salad and on my sandwiches. Well, that is the dream.
 
Other years I have started the tomatoes from seed and looked after them for months it seemed before they were ready to plant in dirt as seedlings. Once they hit the dirt, they succumbed to some kind of vegetative state for a couple of weeks. Maybe it was a kind of tomato PTS. Whatever the reason, the tomatoes reached a pretty decent size eventually, but not one turned red or even a light pink. I brought them inside just before the first frost and over the next month or so, a few turned red, and a few stayed green and a third just started to rot. None of them tasted any better than the tomatoes I can get at the store every day throughout the year.

Next I bought seedlings and that year I had so many tomatoes that friends and relatives refused to take any more from us. I got sick of the taste of tomatoes and a goodly amount ended up in the compost bin. I don’t know what I did to make them grow, but so far I haven’t been able to duplicate that success.
 
This year I bought plants that are about a foot tall and one even has flowers already. With any luck, they will not suffer from the vegetable PTS disorder and will just start growing and fruiting. Ideally, I’d like to have some tomatoes in late July or early August, but I will take them whenever they choose to grow.

I bought the three plants for about $20 including taxes which is cheaper than some of the other places I looked at. Tomatoes are going for about $1.50 a pound right now and I can only assume that at the end of the season (harvest time) they really should be down to about $1.00 a pound. They should be, but the way modern economics work, when there is a glut in the market the price will rise and when a commodity is in short supply the price will rise. We just can’t win. Anyways, the way I see it, each plant needs to produce just under seven pounds of fruit. Large, juicy, red and aromatic tomatoes fit for a king.

I’m not even going to factor in the time spent watering and weeding, plucking the extra floret’s off the plants and shooing the birds away. I don’t shoo the birds away, I trust them not to eat more than their fair share. They can peck one or two tomatoes and leave me the rest. Well, unless they are all green and then they can have as many tomatoes as they want.


I’ll let the plants get used to being in the back yard tonight and sometime tomorrow I will bury them in the dirt, soak them and then leave them to do what they are supposed to do. Should be fun…

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