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The Tomatoes Are Coming!

July 29, 2011

110 of the 128 tomato plants (18 are in the hoop houses)

I am serious about growing tomatoes this year, lots of tomatoes. I put in 128 plants, in 18 different varieties. I want some tomatoes and I am not taking any chances.

Lots of green Jaune Flammee tomatoes

Last weekend, Steven and I cleaned up the tomatoes: weeding, pruning, and a mid-season fertilizer boost (organic material: a mix of feather and blood meal). While we were working, I looked and looked for any sign of ripening tomatoes. Nothing. The plants looked great: strong, healthy and growing. I pruned them back quite a bit for good air circulation, to help prevent a repeat of last year’s blight. There were quite a few tomatoes forming, but all green. The ones that looked the closest to ripening first are a new variety for me this year, Jaune Flammee, though according to the catalog description, they take longer to mature than a couple other varieties I planted.

That seems to be true. On Tuesday, as I planted the second batch of basil out in the tomatoes, I spied the slightest bit of color on my reliably early stand-by: Stupice. I have been growing Stupice, a Czech heirloom tomato, for probably 10 years now, and it has always been the first tomato of the season. It will be again. I have two that I will pick this weekend, along with a couple little cucumbers for our first Greek salad. Another new-for-me variety this year, Morden Yellow, is supposed to mature in the same number of days as Stupice, but it doesn’t look that close yet. We’ll see how long it takes.

The first ripe Stupice tomato

Even with this dismal summer (it doesn’t look like we will hit 90 degrees once this July) I am holding out hope that we will have a nice, long season for tomatoes, well into October. Whichever tomatoes are ready first doesn’t really matter; the tomatoes are coming, and I am happy.

One Comment leave one →
  1. July 29, 2011 9:43 am

    those are some lucky tomatoes… your patch looks so good! may August stay warm and dry and ripen them all up : ) and yay Stupice! we grew those farming, too and they are reliably speedy for chilly nw nights.

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