Sadly, to me, this year they were not worth the money and work invested; although I would always plant them. There is nothing as good as a well grown, homegrown tomato, and that is reason enough to try anew each year. It isn’t the tomato plants fault that I had a less than stellar year, again. It is partly the growing season, and partly my own darn laziness.
Trips Get In The Way
I still have not mastered the art of the harvest. Leaving town (and thus not minding the garden) has been the late summer norm for me for several years. There just does not seem to be a good time to take a vacation from the garden. The late summer heat wave and the accompanying drought did a number on the tomato harvest, too. OK, those are this years excuses.
Yet, if I am to see the children, grandchildren, and attend their important events… trips out of town are on the schedule for the growing season.
Tomatoes Are Not Just Art
But the real problem is how out of habit I’ve become with working in my kitchen. Instead, I’ve concentrated on tackling bad habits such as accumulating clutter, not building the good ones such as more time cooking from scratch at home. I feel a New Year’s resolution coming on.
“Just Art” – that is an oddball thing to say, isn’t it? Art is one of the great pleasures of life. Creating and enjoying it… and what is more artful than a big bowl of beautiful tomatoes on the counter? It is ephemeral art, but that is how we should live…. life being full of artistic expression in daily things. In my opinion, anyway. This type of thinking is what gets in the way of the practical matter of slicing up tomatoes for our meals and making sauce from a good crop. But I do enjoy the beauty of the food garden!
Fall is a great time to improve the garden soil.
New Years Day, and its resolutions, is a long way off, so what can I do for next years good intentions, now? I have some new raised bed boxes this year, but I believe they could use some increased attention to building up the soil. Fall is a great time to put amendments into the soil. Now that frosts are coming, the vegetable garden will be cleared, tilled (if there are no heavy rains), and I will get the beds all ready for next years plots (in both meanings of the word).
Look ahead if you want to cut the costs of growing your own food. Here are the things to do:
- Save those leaves and create your own compost. Tomatoes love organic soils.
- Save seed from the heirloom types. Hybrids are not going to come true from seed, but that is how we get the heirlooms.
- Find a source of fertilizer and compost makings… used coffee grounds, manures,anything added to the ground now will mellow over the winter.
- Put away your tomato stakes, and tools so they can be used year after year.
- Invest in whatever equipment you need to make best use of your harvest. Collect and experiment with recipes that will motivate you to be a good steward of all the fruits of your labors.
I’m listening to my own good advice this year…. and next.Really.
How was your harvest? And do you have tips for me to encourage better use of the food garden fruits?
Edited to add….
I planted ‘Black Prince’ and ‘Black Krim’- did not like either. Too much gel for my tastes. I won’t go for those next year.
I will look for ‘Pink Caspian’s again, or else try to raise my own seedlings come February.
‘Early Girl’ is on my short list of plants to buy at the nursery for 2011.
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