Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Purchased Two Husky Cherry Red Tomatoes!

Okay, let's get caught up on things, shall we?

I harvested a Tumbling Tom on June 1. I tried it and found it a bit mealy but otherwise acceptable.

Last Saturday we harvested an Isis Candy and an Indigo Rose. My wife tried the Indigo Rose and said it wasn't quite ready yet. I don't know what happened with the Isis Candy, but I know the dogs have been picking off some of the mature ones before I can harvest them.

We harvested a Tumbling Tom last Monday. My wife tried it and found it a bit mealy as well.

Over the Memorial Day weekend we purchased two Husky Cherry Red tomato plants! We were surprised to find them. We won't have Clint Eastwood's Rowdy Red or Vorlon or SunGold or Orange Paruche but at least we'll have Husky Cherry Red!

I dug holes last weekend but my wife expected me to plant them and I expected her to plant them. One hole is in the "koi pond" and the other hole is where Kellogg's Breakfast was planted. Kellogg's Breakfast did nothing and was starting to wither away.

This year will not be a normal year. We planted late (and are still planting!) due to a number of factors. I have pruned the branches off the ground in the "koi pond" over the Memorial Day weekend, but by last week it needed to be done again. I haven't gotten to the back yard pruning at all.

Normally I'd be "training" the tomato plants every morning, but even that has been temporarily curtailed. If the weather is cool enough and I have the time, I'll do a little bit of tomato work at night. But a vast majority of the work is done over the weekend, weather permitting.

I haven't even started on the on-line spreadsheet this year. There's too much to do around the house.

And as it stands, I may not do daily blog updates when the harvest rolls in. I used to be able to handle this in the early morning, but no longer. If it happens, it will be at night when I have the time to get things posted.

I'm not complaining about it, it's just the way things are.

On the plus side, the growth of Hungarian Heart has been truly amazing. It's already approaching 5 feet tall. By comparison, I don't think any tomato plant in the "koi pond" has reached two feet in height.

Almost all of the plants look quite good but will mature in the middle of the summer heat.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

We're Planted!

On Friday my wife planted SunSugar and Marianna's Peace. Barring any surprises, we have completed planting our tomatoes for 2015.

On Saturday I put cages on the uncaged tomatoes and moved a few of them around. Hungarian Heart continues to look great, while Black From Tula doesn't look good at all.

My wife continues to water the tomatoes as necessary.

Time permitting, I'll get the on line spreadsheet together.

We're behind on just about everything in 2015 but we plow ahead as best we can. Let's hope for a good tomato year!

Monday, May 18, 2015

Planted Two More Tomatoes; Harvested Isis Candy

On Tuesday I harvested an Isis Candy.

Because we planted late this year, my wife left the fruit on the seedlings planted in the raised beds. I'm in complete agreement with that strategy. The roots of the tomato plants in the raised beds don't get that deep (the roots reach the original ground and essentially "hit the wall") so there simply isn't too much to lose by keeping the tomatoes on the vine.

My wife tried it a few days later and didn't like it. However, this is an early tomato. I'll wait for the big flush before making a judgment. That and I didn't taste this one ;)

On Saturday my wife planted Nebraska Wedding and San Marzano in the southwest raised bed. I dug two more holes for our last tomatoes...but our son woke up from a very late nap and my wife couldn't plant them.

Today my wife watered the front yard tomatoes.

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Planted Four More Tomato Plants; Isis Candy Maturing

On Saturday I dug a few more holes and my wife planted four more tomatoes -- Buffalo Heart Giant, Big Yellow Zebra, Kellogg's Breakfast and Indigo Apple in the raised bed.

I think we're down to three tomato plants left to plant. I dug two more holes in another raised bed.

On an odd note, an Isis Candy tomato is already maturing!

My wife watered the tomato plants in the front yard. Happy Mother's Day to a great wife and mother!!!

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Planted 16 More Seedlings!

Big day today.

Camille came over to watch our son. That left us to dig lots of holes and plant lots of tomatoes.

In the morning I brought over three more wheelbarrows of compost to the "koi pond" and smoothed out the compost piles. I did the same for the back yard compost piles. Then I dug six holes in the "koi pond" and took a break for breakfast.

It was significantly warmer after breakfast. I dug a hole or two in the back yard and stopped for exhaustion. These back yard holes were trouble because they were in virgin, rocky areas. It took a significant amount of time to clear out about two feet of dirt. I took a shower in the afternoon and took a short nap.

Meanwhile my wife was furiously planting behind me in both the front and back yards.

In the evening I dug three more holes in the "koi pond" and one really rocky hole in the back yard. My wife filled all the holes (save one in the "koi pond" that she thought was too close to another seedling) with seedlings.

Eight tomato plants were planted in the back yard: Green Grape, Red Pear Piriform, Chef's Choice Orange, Green Zebra, Tasmanian Chocolate, Thessaloniki, Speckled Roman and Large Barred Boar.

Eight tomato plants were planted in the front yard: Black Cherry, Paul Robeson, Carol Chyko's Big Paste Black, Earl of Edgecombe, Japanese Black Trifele, Berkeley Tie-Dye, Emmy and Stupice.

I believe we have around seven more seedlings to plant.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Planted Five More Seedlings In The Back Yard

Today my wife planted Henderson's Pink Ponderosa, Porkchop, Garden Peach, Chef's Choice Orange and Indigo Apple in the back yard. A couple of these seedlings were two feet tall but still in their original container.

One interesting thing noted: Three of the holes dug on the north side near the lemon tree had some water in them! My wife attributed this to the soaker hose feeding the nearby roses.

I continued to move a bunch of compost around in the back yard, slowly flattening the two mounds.

The gardeners cleared out all the sweet peas in the "koi pond" in the early afternoon. Finally, the "koi pond" is available for planting! Late in the evening (just before 10 PM) I got three more wheelbarrows of compost into the "koi pond".

Monday, April 27, 2015

Eight More Seedlings Planted

On Tuesday my wife surprised me by planting four tomato plants -- Blue Boar Berries, Black From Tula, Snow White and Kentucky Beefsteak.

However, I wasn't able to dig any holes for the rest of the week -- I was just too busy with other priorities in the evening.

On Saturday I dug four more holes in the back yard. Yesterday I prepped the dirt and in the evening my wife planted four more tomato plants -- Nyagous, Yellow Perfection, German Orange Strawberry and Pineapple.

Tonight I managed to dig a couple more holes in the back yard and moved around some more compost.

Our seedlings are getting quite large and should have been planted weeks ago. We'll simply do the best we can and leave it at that.

Monday, April 20, 2015

Planted Two More Tomato Plants

On Wednesday I finished off the third hole left from Tuesday and dug a couple more.

Thursday and Friday I didn't do anything about planting tomatoes. If I dig too much my right knee swells and I have to back off. This was a backing off period.

Saturday afternoon I had a little time to spread out some of the compost in the back yard, but it was too hot to plant.

Yesterday I worked the TomatoMania event at Flora Gardens in Ojai. Not only was it turning dark by the time I got home, I brought home some more seedlings. I went to bed early...

...and I got up early. But I did spend time before dawn prepping the dug dirt piles for planting. Also, I added compost to all of our seedlings not yet planted.

Tonight we got two more planted: Momotaro and Aunt Ruby's German Green. Afterwards I placed compost in the spaces between the planted tomatoes.

So the short term goal is to plant tomatoes in the six remaining holes and then move more compost around the areas recently planted. Then it's dig, dig, dig more holes in the back yard. When my wife pins back the sweet peas growing in the "koi pond" in the front yard, I can dig there as well.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Dug Three More Holes This Evening

I got two more holes dug in the back yard after work and started on a third when it was time for dinner. Not very exciting, is it?

I can tell, however, that I'm digging in areas not planted before. I've been hitting too much broken asphalt in the ground. This evening one of the holes produced a small blue button. One thing about this neighborhood -- they buried their mistakes...

Last night I dealt with an accounting issue that I put off for about seven weeks. Tonight I caught up with the ironing. Tomorrow I have a couple of other niggling items I'll try to get done. Slowly but surely.

Tomorrow we are planning to plant tomatoes in the evening after work. But at this pace we won't get caught up with planting until June...

Monday, April 13, 2015

Moved Some Compost

We got some compost delivered on Thursday.

I spent Thursday through Sunday moving the compost off the driveway. We needed the driveway to park our cars. I worked furiously and was wiped out by Sunday afternoon. Note, we don't have the compost in place, we just got it off the driveway.

I did manage to dig three holes Sunday afternoon. Two of them were in the southeast raised bed. Both holes were "rooty", I assume from the ponderosa pine tree. I was able to pull out a half of a brick from the second hole.

The one hole I dug in the back yard growing area had the bottom of a glass jar within the dirt.

There was no time this evening to do anything about the compost. I worked late and had other things to catch up on.

The plants we planted are doing well. But I need to find time to move the compost to where it's needed and of course, plant more tomatoes.