Monday, 22 April 2013

Tomato plants...



I just thought that everyone who reads this amazingly erudite blog, would like to know that I have, over the last weekend, potted on over eighty tomato plants.

I was given some heritage seed a couple of years ago, which are 'Black Krim',


and they are buggers to grow and they look hideous, but the flavour is totally outstanding, and Mrs Scroblene freezes pounds of the things for all her culinary masterpieces later on in the year...

We also grow 'Gardener's Delight', which are a delicious small plum type, and 'Sungold' is the new addition this year, as they are reckoned to be the sweetest toms you can ever grow!

So 'The Turrets' will be festooned with pots of toms, in all house directions and also the greenhouse and probably the allotment, (Walls to the North, South and East as well as West) as late blight (sodding nuisance) knocks them back in some years, and we ain't having that this year!

Eighty tomato plants should provide about 240 pounds of toms, so several bruschetta and bolognese dishes await a slavering Scrobs family, and the vitamin C will also eventually stop me getting the blasted racking cough I've had since January...

18 comments:

Thud said...

I'll plant some if it ever bloody thaws up here.

A K Haart said...

I'm envious - supermarket tomatoes are crap. I threw some in the composter yesterday - they had all the flavour of a glass of water.

rvi said...

Careful, mate, or you'll soon be getting a knock on your door from the H***z man! They don't like competition you know..

Scrobs... said...

As an ageing member of a gardening blog in another place Thud, that is a ready subject which is always being pondered!

I reckon we've lost nearly six weeks already this year, and some plants just won't get the days in at all.

I'm sorry you're in the same boat.

Scrobs... said...

I'm afraid that's mostly the case, Mr H, as they're grown hyproponically to save space and expense, and with no soil to draw up some character and flavour.

By the way, there's still time to get some going this year...

Scrobs... said...

I'd swap some of them for a few dozen tins of beans any time, Reevers! We do it for freshly laid eggs so why not my other addiction...

;0)

microdave said...

My late father was quite successful at growing tomatoes, cucumbers & melons from seeds he had saved from previous years. We always had to be careful on opening the airing cupboard, for fear of trays of seedlings falling off the hot water cylinder!

I haven't got the time or patience to emulate him, but I made a fairly good job of raising some tomato plants obtained from a local garden centre. My main efforts are the raspberry canes in our fruit cage, and I'm trying some strawberry plants in the greenhouse as well.

Oh, I've also put in a couple of gooseberry bushes...

rvi's granny's cookbook says said...

Microdave: When the berries are picked, wash them in cold water to get rid of the dust, then put them on a tray separately and bung it in the freezer. When they berries are frozen put them into a polybag and bung them in the freezer to be eaten whenever you feel like it once the season is over. Fresh goosgogs/raspberries with whipped cream/ice cream on Christmas Day go down a treat. Try it!

microdave said...

We've tried freezing raspberries in the past, but they turned to mush. However wild blackberries (gathered from hedgerows) freeze a treat, and along with Bramley's from a friends tree keep us in pies all year round.

The raspberries rarely last the day they are picked - many don't even make it out of the cage! - so we just accept them as a treat for a few months. I've re-planted some stray shoots in pots, and they are coming along nicely in the greenhouse, so with a bit of luck will extend the harvesting season.

The gooseberries (if successful) will be frozen to help with the pie situation.

Electro-Kevin said...

We've just lost an allotment but acquired a greenhouse. Tomatoes it will be then.

We have a lovely herb garden out front which includes plenty of Rosemary - great for Italian cooking.

Scrobs... said...

Microdave! Welcome to GQT!

I fully understand the wrath you would have experienced from killing off those treasured seedlings - I think the current record is three years in Pentonville for strangulation of a perpetrator of such a crime...

How big is your greenhouse though, and is there enough room for the straws to produce and set the eight million runners you'll produce this year?

We're on our first goosegog bush in twenty-two years, and it's being planted - possibly today, if the sun shines and my bottle of Spitfire is nestling in the fridge!

Scrobs... said...

Granny Reevers, you are a font of culinary knowledge!

Yup, separate freezing, then bagging up afterwards is the key to good fruit preservation, but would I be right in saying that the Far East has slightly different weather at Christmas than Blighty?

Scrobs... said...

Marvellous news about your new GH, Elecs!

Plenty of time to get some toms going, and perhaps a grobag this year, as last year was a bit of a bugger for blight everywhere, and you don't know what went on, or did you?

And still time for cucumbers in there as well!

Sorry you lost your allotment though, as that is a separate subject altogether...

"Granny" Reevers said...

Scrobs, you would indeed! 24-45+*C year round in the tropical/equatorial areas of the far east unless you get up into the hills where is can be relatively chilly once the temp drops below 20*C !!

But the raspberries and goosgog growing refer to previous incarnations. Raspberries should not turn to mush if they are not in that condition when picked. Separate fast freezing straight from the cane always worked for this family. They do though go a bit soft as they defrost, so don't defrost them until about 10 minutes before you want to scoff 'em.

microdave said...

Thanks for the welcome - I noticed the mention of "Tomatoes" in AK Hart's blogroll, and thought I would investigate!

Father spent hours tending his plants - I'm really just experimenting to see what I can get away with.

The greenhouse is 8x6ft and has 4 tomato plants in 2 growbags down one side. The benches at the end carry 3 rectangular containers with various raspberry shoots, and old canes I was going to throw away after re-planting the fruit cage. They will be put on the floor when (if) they get tall enough.

The other side bench has more rectangular containers with 2 each of 3 different varieties of strawberries. I hadn't given any thought to runners - I think the labels said something about cutting them off? I don't really mind buying some more next year if these are successful, they weren't that expensive, but if the runners can be re-used I'll have to start reading some of Dad's books!

The 2 gooseberry bushes have been planted in an extension to the fruit cage. I spotted one of our feathered friends taking an interest in them, and hastily arranged some mesh to keep them from having a go at the buds...

Scrobs... said...

You should get a fine crop of toms from 2 plants per Growbag, MicroD!

I thought it would be easier to propagate rasps from cuttings, but we did get four eventually!

We haven't grown strawberries for years, as we're blessed with hundreds of Alpine straws which pop up everywhere here, but yes, you can cut off runners, and re-use them elsewhere, or just chuck them as you say!

Yes, birds can play havoc with young buds, which reminds me to cover the blueberries...

A seriously helpful website for a gardening forum is this one: -

http://chat.allotment.org/

Electro-Kevin said...

We gave up the allotment. A little too far away and out of sight. (It was at the back of our house and we could see it)

It would have been neglected.

Michael said...

Plenty of time and space at the new home, Elecs!

I've just spent a whole afternoon buqqering about with a crumbling computer trojan, and missed a couple of late pm hours potting on stuff...

Buqqer again...;0(