Thursday, April 7, 2011

Planting Again

New planted Roma
I  have been short of funds, so I put off planting more tomatoes. Luck was with me though.  Central Market had tomatoes on sale for $1.50 a plant.  Other places a single tomato plant cost $4.00.  I bought three because I have a total of seven cages that I made over 30 years ago.

Home I went but did not have time to plant the tomatoes that day..  Two days later I had the plot turned with added compost, fertilizer and dry leaves.  I planted the three plants which were very long-stemmed and leggy..  I removed the lower stems and leaves, the dug a small trench in my plot.  I laid the plant in on its side with the end curving up.  I then buried the roots and stem leaving the leafy end of about ground.  The stems will root and give you a good strong root system.

I planted Roma, Snow White Cherry, and Bonito Ojo in a triangular pattern..I only knew Roma as a variety.  The other two were unknown..  I would look then up on the internet another day.

The next morning I went out to check all my plants and begin a new plot in which to plant some sweet pepper seeds.  The first four plants were flourishing,almost double their original sizes.  Two of the plants I had planted the day before looked fine, but the third, the Snow White Cherry was lying on the ground.  I picked it up gingerly hoping that the stem had just been bent and could be straightened.  No way.  The stem had been chewed almost completely through: it snapped in my fingers.  I looked at the plant nothing was on it.  I checked the ground around it.  There was a small black caterpillar looking particularly well fed.  I heaved him into the patch of cane on the other side of the drive.  Now I needed another tomato.

I returned to Central Market hoping they had some more inexpensive plants.  My heart skipped a beat (not unusual, I take medicine to make my heartbeat more regular) when I saw many new tomato plants.  They were bound to be more expensive than the others I had purchased.  I was wrong.  The  new plants were still a dollar fifty.  I found a tomato that I had never planted, Sungold, and bought it.

Once home, I went back to my garden.  I exhumed the remains of the Snow White Cherry tomato,  I dug a new hole and added more compost.  The Sungold was a nice compact plant, so I did not plant it on its side.  The Sungold went into the ground where the Snow White Cherry had emerged.  I watered the new tomato in and went inside.

I watched the tomatoes carefully for the next few days.  Nothing happened.

A new plot was needed for my peppers so I prepared a new four feet by four feet bed.  My back offered only mild complaints. I watered it well and waited to turn it one more time.  Two days later I finished the preparation.  I planted some sweet banana peppers from seed left over from last year and some Sweet Cherry Red peppers from a new packet, all on April 3, 2011.  I like sweet peppers better than any others including bell peppers..

Established Foursome
Most of my tomato plants are now blooming.  The plants will soon be setting fruit.  The local mockingbirds have already scouted my plants.  The birds and I will wait for ripe tomatoes together.  Usually there is enough for both of us.  I just wish the mockingbird would not sing at three in the morning.

No comments: