Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Garden "Volunteers"

A few weeks ago I wrote about our “volunteer” tomato plants. We’re not sure where they came from, although we have some guesses that have to do with either birds or dogs—I’ll spare you the details—but we’re happy to have them. The cherry tomato plant has hardy been able to hold up its branches they are so loaded with tomatoes. I harvested many tonight and there are at least this many more that’ll be ready in the next few days.

Tonight's Harvest

These plants are definitely stronger than those that were nurtured as seedlings in a greenhouse and then transplanted into our amended soil in the, we thought, perfect spot in the garden. These plants are survivors... growing from seed directly “planted” in soil, unamended clay soil at that, in a location that gets less than the recommend amount of direct sunlight. Of course the best part is that they’re delicious!

I’m planning on saving some of the seeds and experimenting with starting them indoors and then transplanting them into the garden as well as sowing seeds directly in the garden next year. Hopefully their offspring will be just as hardy as these have been. I looked up how to save tomato seeds and found that you have to ferment them before you dry them. I’ll also be saving some of our heirloom Cherokee Purples as well. These are a little finicky, liking to be watered at the same time each week and the same amount. Otherwise they tend to crack somewhat. Ugly, yes, but still delicious. And I’d rather eat an ugly heirloom tomato than those sold by grocery stores that have been modified/bred for uniform size, form, and color, but are flavorless and mealey.

Heirloom Cherokee Purple Tomatoes

1 comment:

  1. Wow - that's an impressive harvest! We've had some toms ripen on the vine lately but some animal came by and ate several of them. Still, we had enough for our usage, so maybe it was not so bad to share with our furry neighbors!