Mega Tomato

A couple of weeks ago I posted a picture of a giant tomato from my garden. It was still green, so we put it in a bag with some apples and bode our time. Lo and behold, the tomato ripened into the glorious yellow beauty it was meant to be.

We sliced it up, unsure of what we’d find. Would it be ripe inside? Would it be rotten to the core?

Perfect! It was perfect! But what to do with such a giant tomato?

Giant BLT!

So how was the tomato? It was delicious. Absolutely perfectly delicious. We even let the baby try it.

From her face you might be led to believe that she didn’t like it. You’d be wrong, though. That’s just the face she makes when she tries something new.

See? We took it away and she wanted more. You know you grew a tasty tomato when a baby likes it.

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Gary

We call groundhogs Gary. All of them. Until recently I thought Garys were great. They’re cute, chubby, furry little things. And then Gary came and ate my garden. He ate the tops off of every carrot. He pulled the beans and peas from my trellis, eating every leaf there was. He ate my parsley, my tarragon, half of my cilantro. He ate the tops of my tomato plants. My yellow squash, my zucchini, my cucumber, all destroyed. My dreams of a plentiful harvest are gone. When I saw the devastation I cried. When I saw Gary again, I was wishing I had a pellet gun in my hand. I’d kill Gary in a heartbeat. All of my hard work, all the time and effort, all the money we put into the garden. Hell, I was out there transplanting seedlings and sowing seeds when I was 9 months pregnant. I was pulling weeds and watering baby plants when I was only 1 week into recovery from my cesarean. I worked hard for that garden. And in one night a hungry groundhog ruined everything. Well, not quite everything. I still have basil growing. I still have some puny pepper plants, and the

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Gardening 2011

Yesterday I was featured on My Square Foot Garden! This is super exciting for me, because I don’t think I’ve ever been featured anywhere before. Certainly not for my garden, anyway.

Just a couple days ago my husband and I ordered our seeds from the Seed Savers Exchange. I’m very excited to use lots of heirloom and organic varieties, most of which would not have been available to me had we gone with Burpee for our seeds like we did last year. The variety of tomatoes and peppers they offer is just astounding; it made it really hard to choose.

After much debate, we decided to go with the following list:

Climbing French Pole Beans
Lazy Housewife Pole Beans (How could I resist such a name?)
Scarlet Nantes Carrots
Japanese Climbing Cucumbers (I might try my hand at pickling!)
Tennis Ball Head Lettuce
Amish Snap Peas
Green Arrow Peas
Bulgarian Carrot Peppers (They didn’t have jalapeno, these look close.)
Sweet Chocolate Bell Peppers
Black Beauty Zucchini
Yellow Crookneck Squash
Chalk’s Early Jewel Tomato (This variety was developed 30 miles from my home!)
Gold Medal Tomato (I couldn’t resist a yellow tomato with such a lovely description)
Genovese Basil

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Last Week In Our Garden

Last week our square foot garden was in its prime. With everything looking good, I thought I should snap some pictures. Above is a head of “EZ Serve” lettuce, which is a compact variety of romaine.

Spicy Arugula

Our arugula is growing so well. It’s really sad that we planted it in the wrong season, and as such it is way too spicy. I mean, it could not be any spicier. One leaf will burn your mouth off. It’s terrible.

Heads of Endive

This is the endive. It’s delicious, and almost all gone now. What is left will be made into salads this week, as next weekend we’ll be tearing out whatever is left.

Our plan is to remove a whole heap of the soil and start amending it. We’ll take out about 1/3 of the clay soil that is in there, and mix it with a bail of peat moss and 1/3 of the compost we’ve been making since March. Then we’ll have a nice fresh bed to plant our salad greens in, and we plan to keep a rotation going in this box throughout the winter, since it is the closest one to the house.

Young Basil Plant

Our basil is finally growing, but there is

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Gardening Update

There’s been a lot of chaos in my life lately; finances are tight, vehicles are broken/breaking, and business is slow. As such, some things have fallen by the wayside. One of which is documenting our square foot garden. I sorely wish I had kept better track of what we have done and when, as it would serve as a vital guide for next years plans. We finally got our trellis netting up on Sunday.

I know we did a lot of things wrong. We clearly started our tomato and pepper plants too early.

The tomato got nice and big, but is still fruiting too soon.

The pepper plants are pretty sad. The peppers look nice, there’s just so very few of them.

The one bursting with pale yellow peppers is a mere 14 inches tall. I’m not sure that the peppers are even the correct color. We tasted one that fell off a few days ago, though, and it was pretty darn good for an unripe pepper.

A lot of our various lettuce transplants died when we had a scorching day and no one was home to water them. We reseeded some squares (which? I don’t know. I really should

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Finances

Tax season is tough for most small business owners, right? I know it is for me. Paying the government, along with an accountant, is a lot for a business that consists of 2 people (myself and my husband). As such, our finances are a bit tight. We’ve had to put some things on hold. I haven’t been baking as much, we haven’t been able to finish the details on our garden construction, and we haven’t been able to buy more soil.

It’s planting season, and we have terrible soil. So a few days ago we just went ahead and transplanted our peppers and tomatoes anyway, right into it. What else can we do? We can’t just wait until it’s economical to spend another $100 on soil. We’ll attempt to grow in it this year, and see what we get. By next spring, we’ll have plenty of compost to mix in, and that will help.

Since we’ve never gardened before, it’s been overwhelming us. Of course, if we had started small it would have been easier. My husband is not the start small type. He likes to go full on into everything he does. This causes frustration sometimes, but more often

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