This week's 'dig'
Kate at High Altitude Gardening reports a neat thing happening in SLC, UT

You know you're a gardener when...
Blunders with Shoots, Blossoms 'n Roots
Where things either live or die!

Apr 18, 2009

We have a tomato!


I was so busy in the garden today that this almost escaped my detection!
Note: Image zooms on mouse over.







I couldn’t believe it! Now this tomato is an early variety. It may have been planted early, but I’ve kept it covered in a tunnel until today! I also made sure to tap the stem near the flowers for pollination until the bees could get to it. I think it worked!

I managed to get the green beans in the ground today too, complete with trellis :). The varieties are ‘Kentucky Blue Pole’ and an interesting one called ‘Dow Gauk’ Yardlong Asparagus. I guess this bean tastes more like asparagus and you harvest it when they are 12-18 inches!


The tunnel behind it is where the tomato is planted, along with some lettuce and beets. The 4x4 next to that is where the early, gamble broccoli crop is- as you can see I lost about half. Weird thing is they seemed to be attacked by ants! They were everywhere and seemingly eating the stems down to nothing- I’m sure there was another pest and they were just reaping the benefits, but that’s sure what it looked like- I’ve never seen ants do this before!

Lettuce ‘Focea’, ‘Breen’, Beets ‘Bull’s Blood’

I also got some Hollyhock planted, just 3, but it’s a start!


Hollyhock ‘Indian Spring Mix’ and ‘Single Black’

A few more lettuce and broccoli was planted today as well.

Lettuce ‘Red Sails’ and Broccoli ‘Green Calabrese’

I’m tired, but so happy to see that tomato- I really thought that it wouldn’t do much for a while. Plants are amazing- or should I say the Designer is amazing ;)


Happy gardening!


P.S. I just wanted to let you all know that when I do a post with a ‘zooming’ picture, it may not look right if you are reading it in an email or in a reader-


  • Blossom

    Yup, the designer is amazing. Congrats on the tomato.
    What I'll do if I have ants is spray the plant with water-based insect repellent. But since the plant is a source of food, you might wanna think twice before spraying.
    It works well for my (non-edible) plants.

  • Anonymous

    Hi Tessa~~ What great weather for gardening. Your pictures show how much work/play and creativity is going on. As for the ants, they are attracted to honeydew which is the secretion emitted by aphids. So, it's possible that you have green aphids hiding within the florets--an annoying alliance for sure. (I speak from experience.)

    Anyway, here's to a plump red tomato soon!

  • Bangchik and Kakdah

    I love the sight of tomato plant blooming... wait until the fruit developing....... our tomato plants are too heavy with fruits now.. cheers! ~ bangchik

  • Daphne

    Wow the first tomato. That is exciting. I keep thinking I ought to do the early tomato thing, but just haven't pulled it off in ages.

  • Outside In

    Wow, I haven't even got my tomatoes yet.
    I have to agree the designer is amazing, I have to get busy and build my raised beds for the tomatoes.

  • DirtDigger (Tessa)

    Blossom- I have just been spraying with plain water, they have been cut down quite a bit! I little tin foil down on the soil helped, I guess they don't like foil :).

    Grace- Yep, that's the first thing I looked for, couldn't find a one! That is what is so weird. What I did see is one of the broccoli in a corner had large, irregular holes in the centers of leaves- could be the same worm that was eating my Mizuna a while back.

    Bangchick- I can't wait! Yummy, for you and the loaded tomotoes :).

    Daphne- I think it's well worth the effort. I don't buy tomatoes in the stores anymore and I just can't wait to taste a tomato!

    Cathy- Good luck with the building! I don't build raised beds anymore, with the 4x4's we built that was enough! Now I make 30" wide beds and to make them I dig out the 12" wide path next to it and sift that soil, adding sifted compost to it- then build up the bed with that. Much easier and perfect to straddle when I need to work, a chenille is easy to make for it as well. :)

    Happy gardening everyone!

  • gardenerprogress/Catherine

    A tomato already? How great! Everything looks great as usual! I think your plants have the healthiest soil around, it just looks good! Hope you can get back out today, I'm heading out soon to get some plants in the ground.

  • Frances

    Hi Tessa, that is too exciting for words! The tunnel must really put you ahead, besides protecting the plants. Sorry about your broccoli though. The lettuces are so pretty, I would grow them for their ornamental value alone even if they weren't delicious. Those long asparagus beans sound interesting too, for once you don't have to worry about picking them too late. I will be interested to see what they really taste like.

  • Joanne

    Hi Great to see your tomato I am so envious to see this so early.

  • Becca's Dirt

    Fantastic - A tomato. I can't wait to see some produce from my garden. Looks like you have a lot going on. Everything looks good. Happy gardening...


    Wow, congrats on your first tomato. Everything is looking great.

  • Photos 01

    Two people in my neighborhood have hollyhocks. There were 2 that were blooming in my ditch, so I transplanted them both. The one that I thought would live didn't. But the one I thought wouldn't live did! Then the neighbor down the street gave me a lot of seeds. I just cant' wait to plant them this year. I am have tomatoes. Have you tried making tomatoe sandwiches? Bread, mayo, and just tomatoes taste great!

  • Seasonal Wisdom

    Your garden looks great, Tessa. When the first tomato appears, summer can't be far away. Enjoy!

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