Can you have too many tomato plants?

Really— can you? Nichole came through and gave me three beautiful Italian tomato plants yesterday, so I filled up the last three spots in my garden with them today. She gave me a San Marzano, which I grew last year and loved, and two Bisignano #2 plants. Both are paste tomatoes. I’m excited to see how they do.

This time I took some pictures of what I did to plant. I’m not much on folk stuff, but aspirin is good science that helps plants yield more and resist disease like late blight better. My friend puts eggshells in with her tomatoes as you can see. This is unlikely to help with blossom end rot — my soil is already very high in calcium — and blossom end rot is usually caused by irregular watering that prevents calcium from moving right. It doesn’t hurt though. This time I cut the plastic like a triangle or tent to leave space for the stem. Worked perfectly. The bucket holds any excess soil I have to remove. I’ll put it back in the garden in the fall.

I also planted out one of the spare Cherokee Purples. This’ll be the third time I’ve planted Cherokee Purples in that spot. I got to loooing and I think it’s the lowest spot in the garden and it may be drowning the plants. I’ll keep a close eye on it, and if it starts looking sketchy I’ll cut the plastic out in that area to let it dry out some more.

I didn’t get any fertilizing done this morning. I waited too late to go outside, and I had forgotten my tank sprayers are all broken anyway. I went ahead and ordered new ones and will fertilize tomorrow. I did spray the plants with some Sevin and Daconil fungicide, though. They’re looking good with the exception of Atomic Grape. The plants I put aspirin on are all showing much less lower leaf disease than my other plants, but they are also smaller and less bushy. I will need to test better next year. I’m doing a lot less spraying overall this year, but I haven’t needed to. My plants are much healthier this year than last — maybe because I grew from seed.

I’ve about decided the plants in the main bed are getting too much water. The plastic, even though it’s perforated, is keeping too much moisture in. I’m not quite sure what to do about it, since I definitely do not want to be out there pulling weeds in August.

Today’s harvest, and first ripe tomatoes!

I picked my first ripe tomatoes today! SunGold was the winner. They tasted good — I’m excited for some of the bigger tomatoes to ripen up. First tomatoes take so long to get and then they just come faster and faster until it seems like it takes just days for them to grow and ripen.

Had a nice phone visit with my dad comparing gardens. He’s very excited about his trellises and cucumbers. It’s the first time in a couple of decades since he last grew cucumbers, and he’s very pleased with what he has produced so far. He’s eating two or three a day, and he has about 49 ripe tomatoes already. He only got his first ripe sun golds this last week, though, and since those are the ones I started, it makes me feel a little better that he only gets a few days ahead of me with production being in a warmer growing zone. It’s just that he can start earlier that makes his plants go faster.

Garden hands

Posted by Jenny Smith

I'm Jenny Smith. I keep up with three cars, two kids, one husband, and I live on 300+ acres of rolling farmland in Northern Virginia where we look after an elderly relative. I like tomatoes, all things Star Trek, watercolor, and reading. I spend most days in the garden fighting deer and groundhogs as I pursue a graduate degree. I'm trying to be like Jesus -- emphasis on the trying.