Saturday, July 12, 2008

Harvested Red Yellow Cap!

Today's haul includes: 24 Red Currants, 11 Salisaw Cafes, 3 Paul Robesons (one was six ounces), 2 Husky Cherry Reds, 2 Stupice, 2 White Bush, 2 Black Plum Pastes, a Cherokee Chocolate, Sioux, Prairie Fire, Jaune Flamme, Thessaloniki, Piccolo, Green Grape, a beautiful 15 ounce Radiator Charlie's Mortgage Lifter, and a new tomato: 2 Red Yellow Caps! One of the Red Yellow Caps was 12.5 ounces and the other was a whopping 23.5 ounces!

The larger Red Yellow Cap is one of the strangest tomatoes I've picked. Have you heard of Siamese Twins? Well, this tomato is three tomatoes conjoined into one. Siamese Triplets!

In 2006 we had a German Johnson that was a product of two conjoined tomatoes. It looked like a barbell. This Red Yellow Cap vaguely reminds us of cauliflower.

We've taken photos of this tomato and will post them on this blog some time next week.

I did a lot of tomato taping last night and this morning. I did a lot of work on Salisaw Cafe, which exposed some ripe tomatoes. Stupice has a similar problem but because the cage is too small I don't have anywhere to tie the branches. I'm almost sure I have ripe Stupice tomatoes that I just can't see under the jungle of branches.

The numbers for Red Currant are climbing, but don't be fooled. This plant is exhausted. The numbers will drop. But I expect a second wind in a month or so.

We're starting to get some good results from the mid-sized tomatoes and as you see, a couple of beefsteaks as well. This month's numbers will be laughably small compared to July 2007, but at least it feels like the tide is coming in!

Friday, July 11, 2008

Harvested Stupice Tomatoes!

Okay, this harvest isn't so sad. This morning's haul includes 19 Red Currants (reaching over 1700 for the year), 6 Husky Cherry Reds, 2 Piccolos, 2 Salisaw Cafes, 2 Thessalonikis (one six ounces), 2 Paul Robesons (one seven ounces), 2 Prairie Fires, a Lime Green Salad, Green Grape, a half pound Black From Tula, Kimberly, Sioux, Cherokee Chocolate, Zhezha (front yard) and a new one, 4 Stupice tomatoes!

We have had our largest “mid-size” tomato haul to date, seven. That's not a lot, of course, but at least it looks as if the tide is still coming in.

The seven ounce Paul Robeson is a beautiful looking tomato, a deep reddish brown color.

Last night I added some paper mulch in a few spots. Also, I used tomato tape on the front yard tomato plants until I ran out.

The weather hasn't been too bad, either. Mid 90's most days, but not the intense heat of a few weeks ago.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Low Harvest

This morning's harvest includes 15 Red Currants, 4 Husky Cherry Reds, 3 Cherokee Chocolates, 2 Piccolos, 2 undersized Garden Peaches, a Jaune Flamme, Kimberly and Salisaw Cafe.

A couple of Red Yellow Cap tomatoes are ripening as well as Stupice and Gregori's Altai.

The tallest tomato plant right now appears to be...Evan's Italian Plum!

I have to do some more tomato taping.

Even I have to admit, these totals are somewhat disappointing.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

The Harvest Disparity Widens...

Today's morning haul: 23 Red Currants, 5 Salisaw Cafes, 4 Husky Cherry Reds, 3 Cherokee Chocolates, 2 Black Plum Pastes, a Red Robin, Prairie Fire, Taxi and Green Grape tomatoes.

41 tomatoes overall. This date last year (no joke) 359 tomatoes. I believe the picture at the top of the KCRW posting of my interview with Evan Kleiman is an image from that day.

My wife started wondering last evening about this disparity. The only thing I can say is that we were at “high tide” this time last year while this year, the tide is still coming in. For instance, last year I started harvesting Jeff Davis on July 3. This year the plant looks great but there's not even a tomato on it yet due to the late planting.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Happy Anniversary!

Today (July 8) is Jim's (my brother) and Evie's first wedding anniversary.

Congratulations Jim and Evie!!!

It Isn't Cherokee Chocolate...

I have a plant labeled Cherokee Chocolate...but it clearly isn't Cherokee Chocolate. Cherokee Chocolate a typical beefsteak in size and obviously a dark brown color. An image can be found here.

The original plant came from the Encino Tomatomania event.

A picture of the plant I'm growing can be found here.

What am I growing? It appears to be a red cherry tomato of some type. The tomato is shaped like a tiny pineapple for lack of a better analogy, about ¾ inches tall, flat top, more rounded bottom, taller than it is wide. I've seen several images on the net that look like it, but there's nothing I've seen where I go “That's it!”. At times a Juliet tomato looks a lot like this tomato, but Juliets get too big. This picture of Grape tomato is close, but the tomato I'm growing is a bit more squat than that. This picture of a Sprite tomato is fairly close, especially with the mottled tomato in the lower center whose color could be mistaken for brown but is in fact a day or two away from full red maturity. But there are too many tomatoes per cluster for it to be Sprite.

Sooooo....I don't know what I'm growing, but it isn't what the label indicated.

Old Ivory Egg

Here's an image of Old Ivory Egg, taken last Sunday.

Harvested Radiator Charlie's Mortgage Lifter!

And this morning's haul includes 16 Red Currants, 7 Salisaw Cafes, 6 Husky Cherry Reds, 2 Black Cherries, 2 Cherokee Chocolates (which isn't Cherokee Chocolate, but I don't have a better label at the moment), 2 Green Grapes, a Jaune Flamme, Red Robin, Kimberly, Sioux, White Bush (yum!) and a new one, Radiator Charlie's Mortgage Lifter!

To put this in perspective, this morning I've harvested 41 tomatoes. This day last year, 203. I have a pretty good breadth right now – I'm picking a lot of different tomatoes. What I don't have is a lot of depth – I'm not picking a lot per tomato. A lot of ones and twos per day. This will pick up as the month progresses.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Trouble In Paradise...

The morning's harvest included 18 Red Currants, 5 Salisaw Cafes, 2 Black Plum Pastes, 2 Piccolos, a six ounce Aunt Ruby's German Green, a Husky Cherry Red, Paul Robeson and Prairie Fire. Not a large harvest for July.

Last night I saw our Manchester Terrier with another unripe tomato. Eventually, he ate it.

When I came home this evening, I found a half dozen tomatoes had been knocked down in our front yard. A couple of Big Rainbow tomatoes, one about a half pound and another a little less, had been knocked off or picked off and dropped on our driveway. Other smaller tomatoes were knocked off as well, either other Big Rainbows or Thessalonikis. It was clearly deliberate damage, for whatever purpose or reason.

I brought almost all of the tomatoes picked over the last two days to our computer user group board meeting. By the end of the meeting they were all gone!

Grandfather's Article

Here's a link to an article about our distinguished grandfather, Jose Andrade.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Harvested Kimberly and Sioux Tomatoes!

I didn't pick tomatoes on the 5th. Today I harvested tomatoes first thing in the morning.

Today I picked 42 Red Currants, 9 Black Plum Pastes, 4 Husky Cherry Reds, 4 Cherokee Chocolates, 3 Red Robins, 2 Piccolos, 2 Salisaw Cafes, 2 Green Grapes, a Paul Robeson, Jaune Flamme, Prairie Fire, a leathery Taxi (which my wife threw away – the Taxi tomato plant may be done), White Bush, Golden Jubilee and two new tomatoes, Sioux and Kimberly!

From now on, I'll try to harvest in the morning.

Harvested Lime Green Salad!

On July 4, I harvested during the midday sun. I picked 29 Red Currants, 6 Husky Cherry Reds, 2 Black Plum Pastes, a Thessaloniki and a new tomato, 2 Lime Green Salads!

We tried the Aunt Ruby's German Green and Zhezha tomatoes and we liked them both. The two Big Rainbow tomatoes were deemed to be overripe and were discarded.

My wife took all the harvested tomatoes and cut them up for a caprese salad. We brought the salad and other foodstuffs over for a picnic at the Hollywood Bowl. My wife's parents and our neighbors came as well. A good time was had by all!