transplanting tomatoes

 
 
photo by Amelia Fannin A group of volunteers from my community garden got together and transplanted tomato seedlings yesterday. We do this every year. They are late blight resistant tomatoes: Jasper, Mountain Merit, Defiant and Iron Lady. We transplanted about 360 seedlings. We raised them at home under lights and now they’ll be raised by Sandra Curro at Underwood Greenhouses. They’ll be distributed free to any of our 135 gardeners who want them. Extra plants will be for sale at Underwood Greenhouses beginning May 7: 20 School St, Belmont MA.…
 

green tomatoes

 
 
Seems we might get a freeze or frost Sunday night. I picked 32 lbs of green tomatoes today! This caps off a pretty good harvest. I didn’t weigh everything, but I bet I harvested 100-150 lbs of tomatoes.
 

comparing slicing tomatoes

 
 
From left: Sun Gold, Cherokee Purple, Huge Lemon Oxheart, Brandywine, Pink Beauty and Giant Belgium Not shown: Beefsteak, Mortgage Lifter, Carbone, Iron Lady and Mountain Merit. The last two are late blight resistant varieties that I’m growing at my community garden plot. And here are some sliced tomatoes. From top left going clockwise the varieties are: Cherokee Purple, Orange Blossom, Carbone, Mountain Merit, Iron Lady and, in the center is Stump of the World. (I bought the Orange Blossom tomato as I miss growing this one – I ran out…
 

comparing paste tomatoes

 
 
From left: Tiren, Stump of the World, Cordova, Opalka, Heinz 2653, San Marzano, Nova Not shown: San Marzano G3, Polish Linguisa I’d like to eliminate 2 or 3 varieties. And grow less variety for my paste tomatoes. I really prefer the big meaty tomatoes, but they produce fewer tomatoes than the smaller ones. Of course one big Opalka is the size and meatiness of 5 or 6 tiny Novas. My Notes: Tiren: Very early, heavy producer, seems hollow, not so meaty Stump of the World: I think not a paste…
 

nothing like big pretty tomato plants

 
 
I hardly dared hope for great tomatoes as I planted my tomato seeds this spring. Last year, all my tomato plants had leaves that shriveled up, plants that grew spindly, and very few if any fruits on the plants. (Here’s a link to the sad posts.) But  – Yeah!! – I have beautiful tomato plants so far. Big uncurled leaves. I planted in beds that did not have the compost that seem to cause the problem last year.
 

time to plant tomatoes

 
 
My planting calendar says it’s time to plant tomatoes this week. I jumped the gun on thee and planted two werks early. This week I planted two types of sweaty peas (the flowers). A low white flowered one and tall mixed colors. And I’ll soon plant some new bok choy seeds I got. I need to transplant my broccoli into bigger pots. I planted these several weeks early. I’m watching to see when my outdoor peas come up but it’s soooooo cold this week. I’ll wait to plant more outside.…
 

sowing tomatoes (all my favorites)

 
 
Indoor sowing: Broccoli, Artwork Tomato, Cherokee Purple Tomato, Beefsteak Tomato, Sungold Tomato, Pink Beauty Tomato, Giant Belgium Tomato, Mortgage Lifter Tomato, Brandywine Tomato, Huge Lemon Oxheart Tomato, 1884
 

soil test results say the compost was the problem

 
 
I think the results from my soil testing are pretty clear. It’s not looking good for the compost… I did the testing because my tomato plants had terribly curled and leathery leaves, tall spindly growth, and very few fruits this year. I had brought in purchased loam and compost this spring, since we have a new property and I don’t have my own compost yet and needed to new fill raised beds. For the test, I planted the same tomato seeds in samples of 4 different soils: 1) purchased compost,…
 

late blight hit my tomatoes

 
 
My curled leaved tomatoes have been hit a final blow, late blight. I picked all the red and green fruits and cut down the plants. I’ll bag the infected plants soon and let them heat-kill in the sun for a few days before disposing in the trash.   I was able to harvest a good bucket of tomatoes to use for a few weeks. Here’s hoping for a better tomato season next year!!
 

red sauce

 
 
My tomato bowl filled up again today, so time to make red sauce. When I make red sauce I peel, seed and chop tomatoes, then simmer about an hour. More detail: I boil a big pan of water and then put a few tomatoes at a time in it for about 1 minute till their skin starts to split. Remove and cool. Then peel skin. I squeeze out as many seeds as I can, then chop the pulp. I put all tomato pulp in a big pan and simmer, stirring…
 
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