Spring has definitely sprung, and all a little too fast for me. Usually, I am a little too eager to get things growing. I usually sow my tomato seeds indoors in the latter parts of August, trying to give them a head start. This was sometimes a little too early for the Christchurch climate, but might be fine and dandy for Hamilton. Unfortunately, life got the better of me so things got a little delayed. My excuses are assignments, work, family and general life, which all converged into a ball of madness, rolling down a steep hill. On Saturday I finally jumped out of the ball of madness to run off into the garage and get my tomatoes going.
Not having been able to sow tomatoes last season due to moving has left me with a bit of a stash of different cultivars to choose from. Decisions, decisions. I’m not entirely sure how many tomato plants I can fit in the new vege garden, but I’m sure there are other places I can stuff tomato plants if necessary. There were two definite contenders. Black Krim has a great flavour and is always a good conversation starter with lunch visitors. I had saved these seeds from my last crop. I sowed one punnet of those. Number two is Amish Paste. I grew it for the first time two seasons ago and found it is great for making pasta sauce, tomato soup and such. I also got a few whoppers out of it, which is always fun. Ah, Brutus and Giant Bob. The Amish Paste seeds were also saved by me and I sowed a punnet of those too. I had two packets of Big Beef tomato seeds, one was free from a bread promotion last year (I guess that ‘aint happening again) and the other was free from The Husband’s Father, who got it from the bread promotion, which I had tipped them off about. I haven’t tried Big Beef before so I sowed a punnet of those. Then, of course, we have to have cherry tomatoes too. I had three cultivars of these to choose from: Sweet 100, Dew Drop Cluster and Small Fry. The Sweet 100 I had saved from my last crop, but I’ve since remembered they are an F1 hybrid, which won’t come true from seed. They were pretty good, but I think I’ll keep searching for a nice cherry tomato that I can save seed from. I sowed one punnet of Dew Drop Cluster seeds, which I had saved too. They are more of an oval-shaped cherry tomato. Then there was the packet of Small Fry seeds, which I also got free from the bread promotion, so I sowed a punnet of them too. Hmm, bit of a common theme here – all seeds point to free!
So, now I have five punnets of tomatoes on the go. And a total of 42 seeds. I’m guessing they won’t all germinate, as some have been sitting around for a while. But it’s better to be safe than sorry, right? In our old house in Christchurch I used to put the tomato punnets on the sunny kitchen windowsill to germinate. I haven’t got a sunny kitchen windowsill here. So, I put the punnets in a large planter tray, from which they can nicely soak up water through the bottom, covered them with a pane of glass to help speed up the process and put them on the dining table, which is kind of a convenient, sunny holding-place at the moment. And now, we wait.
I have been trying to keep an eye on my other seed punnets too, which have been wrapped up on the patio. It has been getting rather warm some days, so the plastic cover is now open at the front to let more air through. The lettuces and leeks are growing the fastest at the moment. As for the ball of madness, I am pleased to report that it has hit the bottom of the hill (that wasn’t the pleasing part) and is now rolling along the path at a leisurely pace. For now.