This year, I started my tomatoes from seed on 1/23/2012 and 1/24/2012. I chose these dates taking into consideration that last year, I had started in March, which was simply too late. The year before, I started in December, and that was way too early.
I also chose the tomatoes very carefully, taking into consideration our cool temperature climate; this year, they are Black Krim, Momotaro, SunGold and Pineapple. No others because I find I have too many seedlings each year and not enough space. The Black Krim, a cooler climate tolerant tomato, should be perfect for our one block from the beach climate. As for the Pineapple, I think it won't do that well since it seems to prefer sunnier and warmer places so this is my challenge for the year. SunGold does well, since it is a cherry. The Momotaro does okay but I like this tomato and don't want to give up on it.
I harvested the Black Krim and Pineapple seeds directly from the tomato. The Momotaro and Sungold are hybrids and came from the Kitagawa seed company.
This year, I decided to soak the seeds in water for an hour, a new step but I don't know if it made a difference.
Germination rate was 100% except for the Pineapple seeds (50%).
I plant the seeds into small containers.
As the seedlings grow, I transplant into larger containers.
Since I grow the seedlings indoors in my window, I find I need to cold-acclimitize the seedlings before taking them outdoors else they do not grow well. Our outdoor overnight temps drop to 50 F, which I think is pushing the comfort boundaries. The Black Krim have been slowly acclimitized outdoors overnight over a two week period.
Of the six Black Krim seedlings, one has already been given away, one will be given away to a local group, and the rest will be planted in my garden.
This Black Krim has already been planted into the ground.
I follow the instructions from here for the most part.
Wednesday, March 28, 2012
Tuesday, March 27, 2012
The local birds have gourmet tastes, and they love my mesclun lettuce. Here's a shot of some their work in my garden. My solution was to try this old CD trick. I dangle a CD on a string so that it rotates freely in the wind, reflecting sunlight all around. Not the most aesthetically pleasing solution but it seems to work for now. I plan to eat the lettuce soon to make room for tomatoes.
Saturday, March 24, 2012
I'm sorry to have dropped out of sight. I needed to find a new photo host site for this blog since I had maxed out my Flickr site. I'm currently using Photobucket and we'll see how that works. I'm not sure if I like the quality of the photos. In the meantime, I will be experimenting with how Photobucket works. If any of you have suggestions, please leave them in the comments. Thanks!