Monday, July 23, 2007

Tomato Woes

Three guesses why I was so excited when I looked at my cherry tomato plant on Friday.

Yes, I finally got to eat a ripe tomato from my garden on Saturday, July 21. Too bad it was just a cherry. Not that I'm knocking the cherry tomatoes, I love em. But, you know, I want more. I couldn't even wait for it to get really red, I was too scared tragedy would strike.

Gardening article after gardening article mentions tomatoes as one of the easiest veggies to grow. For everyone else, maybe.

Last year, friends brought me two tomato plants in July. I didn't kill them, and I did get some tomatoes, but they were just starting to go crazy when we ot our first frost. I wanted more, much more.

So this year I bought six plants, Early Girl (which is such a misnomer) and Supersonic and one cherry tomato. I bragged to co-workers and family about how I'd be drowning in tomatoes. Yes, surely I'd have plenty to share with them, to make salsa, etc.

All seemed well, even though I now know you're supposed to plant tomato seedlings deeper than the pots they come in as they can sprout more roots (note to self for next year!). But even though I planted them in mid-May, I still haven't gotten a bite of juicy tomato. I have had some big promising looking green tomatoes. But just when they look like they have to be getting ready to turn, this happens. Those bastard squirrels. They always take the biggest one. I've never been so tempted to buy a gun...

My cup almost runneth over Saturday because after checking on the almost ripe cherry tomato I saw one of the Supersonics was turning a lovely shade of orange. Mouth watering, I picked a couple green ones to fry. And that's why I saw it: blossom end rot. Crap. I figured I had better check the one that was ripening. Better to get the bad news over with and sure enough, it had a big, black rotten bottom. Foiled again.

The super dry weather has to be a big factor in this. So maybe it will clear up? Anyone have tips on beating the dreaded BER? I can't face the idea of a tomato-less summer.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Teeny, Tiny Hollyhocks

I didn't expect this minature Hollyhock (Sidalcea malviflora) that I bought from Michigan Bulb Co. to do anything this year, but one of the six is actually blooming. This may be one of the smallest flowers I've ever seen, but at least it proves one of the six plants is doing ok. A couple of the others got fried.

It's so tiny, it's hard to give you a closer look. Here's a bit closer look.

Gardeners, Plant and Nature lovers can join in every Sunday, visit As the Garden Grows for more information.


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