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Friday, February 17, 2012

Second tomato

No, the second tomato isn't anything like playing second banana to someone...I don't think so anyway.
I'm referring to the second tomato that's ripe enough to pluck off my indoor plant. Boy, this weak winter sun surely isn't enough for this endeavor to be very productive, but at this point it's just a test to see how long I can get it to stay alive. That it's still producing, is just an added benefit!

Unfortunately, several problem arose in the pursuit of the endlessly going tomato plant.


Annoying little white flies showed up and I had to spritz them away with a homemade and perfectly harmless spray I made of baking soda, water and a drop or two of liquid dish washing soap. Not certain they are all gone, but they have diminished quite a bit.

I should feed the plants, but I usually just top-dress my tomatoes with compost...the only feeding I like to do. My compost pile, however, is far off. No, it's not been moved. It's exactly where it's always been in the back 40. It certainly seems far more far off than in spring and summer though, I'll tell you that much! Besides, it's probably frozen solid. Won't be getting any of that.

So, what am I to do? I've been giving them Maxicrop powdered seaweed. I just add it to the water I use to water all my indoor plant and I water the plants as usual. Tom just told me I still have some ancient Miracle-gro hidden away, so I could do that too, but I'm rather reluctant to do that. It just goes against the organic grain, but I have to use it somehow. We paid money for it once upon a time, so I will use it...eventually.


So, I see now that there are a couple of other tomatoes ripening ever-so-slowly.

The plants are getting lanky, but they still get a few flowers which I pollinated. San the bees, I once again used my handy-dandy cotton swab, going from flower to flower and rubbing at each. I'm getting pretty good at this pretending to be a bee.


Look at that! Future tomatoes in the making. But will they be grown and ripe before spring comes? Now, that's the question!

6 comments:

  1. Your solution for the white flies sounds like it came out of one of Jerry Baker's books. (we have about 5-6 of them) I was fortunate to meet Jerry Baker once and he actually sent a mutual friend a signed copy to me personally.

    Can a tomato plant that has grown so lanky be replanted outside once spring arrives and start producing again?

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  2. If it's still alive, I will plant it outside and give it a nice pruning to make it a vigorous plant again--or hope that it becomes one! I have plenty of its offspring waiting for June 1 our frost free date, and coincidentally, my birthday, for transplanting outside. By that time I may have enough plants to fill my entire veggie patch.

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  3. Glory, great tomatoes! They look pretty delicious! You can use a couple of drops of dish soap with a few drops of dormant oil in water will get rid of white flies.

    @ Dan, If you still have a tomato plant that lives through winter and has become very tall and lanky, just trim off the excess leaves/ branches on the lower 3/4 of the plant, and bury the long stem horizontally in the garden soil. The stem will grow roots all along it very quickly and the top part of the plant 6" or so you leave vertical will take off like a rocket growing--and produce early.
    The tomato plants seem to develop a super-root feeding system and can be very prolific.
    Do the same thing with new hot-house tomato plants that are "too tall" if you have started any in the spring, perhaps too early, just bury those deeper in the garden bed, leaving only 4-6" sticking up in the sun. This process works with any tomato plant, the small cherry type or biggest beefsteak will produce huge crops.

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  4. Thanks for the info Raymond. Cherry tomatoes we don't have to worry about around here. They seem to grow wild in several places in the yard. We planted one 6 years ago in the front garden and now they will pop up anywhere during the summer. Our dog likes to eat them for some reason and that more than likely explains their migration around the yard...

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  5. I wish I had a window that gets good light, I'd try this.

    Glory did you know that Tomatoes have perfect flowers and self-pollinate? There's a few with genetic issues that do so poorly, but most don't need pollination.

    Mike

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  6. But, Mike, I like pretending I'm a bee. keeps me buzzy...or busy. :-)

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