Sunday, March 13, 2011

March 13, 2011

I kind of feel like EG when he said, sorry for yet another seedling post, but what do people expect... in late winter what else is there... unless you want me to talk about my chicken research. hehe.

This post is all about tomatoes.  Let me start buy saying I've learned my lesson and next year I'll way over plant seedlings like my brother and only keep the best.  I just don't have room to keep tons of tomatoes.  More on that soon.

Last post I mentioned that I really needed to pot up my tomatoes, especially the one that was breaking off mid-stem and the two-seedling cup.  Here is the state of affairs right before I re-potted them.

As you can see, they were very ready for bigger homes.  I know some folks like to pot up tomatoes several times, but I just don't have the supply of containers to do it more than once. So those big quart sized pots is what I use.  I salvaged them from a nursery recycling bin a few years ago.  For the cut stem, it was still connected so I buried it.  Not sure if that's sufficient, but if it grows I guess it is fine, right?

For the dual seed cup, I did what EG suggested.  I soaked the soil completely and gently pulled the seedling apart from the dirt clump.  It was like stringy thread.  I tried my best to spread it out in the soil of the new pot and buried it.  Really it should have been a two person job, but I didn't bother the kids for this.  In the end, here are the three new comers to the party.  And no I didn't plan on succession planting tomatoes.

Now, in case you're wondering how my initial crop of tomatoes were doing, here is a pic of the tinkering I did to make my flat of lettuce work with my really tall tomatoes.  I'm not happy using one light fixture for the entire flat of lettuce, but it can't be helped.  Hopefully they lettuce will mature fast and I can plant it out under my hoop cover.  Maybe I'll hit it with some fish emulsion tonight when I water.

As you can see, the tomatoes are getting really big, and it's only mid-March.  I've got a month to go.  No fish emulsion for them!  If you look closely, you'll see I don't have much room for them to grow more.  Heck, here's a pic to save your eyes.

Unfortunately a few more days and I'll out stretch my current light system. However, as necessity is the mother of all invention, I think I have a solution. I can move the light system over a foot or so and set up some sort of stand for the tomatoes to rest on, then move a tray down there. If I can't go up, I can definitely go down!  That of course is a post for another day.

Enjoy your garden!


  1. Your tomatoes are looking fabulous. Your idea for solving the height problem for the tomatoes sounds like a good approach. When they are ready to go into the ground ultimately, they will be well on their way - which is a huge advantage in our growing climate.

  2. Like I said - nothing to it....Your plants are certainly big - much bigger than mine, even....

  3. Your tomatoes look good! Last year I had a similar dilemma with my tomatoes. The lights were up as high as they could go and the tomatoes needed more room. I ended up removing the bottom shelf and letting the tomatoes rest on the workbench. I gained a few inches but it was enough until I could plant them in the garden.