Monday, July 25, 2011

You Say Tomatoes, I Say...Not Many

When the summer started, I thought I would keep track of how many tomatoes I harvested from the six plants I have in containers in the back yard. After all, this was a not-inconsiderable financial investment: $18 for plants ($3 each), $15 or so in super-special potting soil, $20 for primary-color-coordinated pots, $6 at a garage sale for the rusty blue wheelbarrow that elevated this from container garden to Artful Yard Installation.

Want to know how many pounds of tomatoes have been harvested so far? Well, take a look at this picture and you'll see. I think that total weight is quantified as "Not Worth the Effort."

It has been educational, though. Did you know that tomatoes require a temperature that is neither too hot nor too cold? No, I didn't know that, either.

I truly believed my tomatoes would reciprocate the love I was showing them in trudging out morning and evening to soak them in the lukewarm water that comes out of the hydrant now, even as the thermometer climbed above 100 degrees day after day for the past month or so. "Yummy! I'm watering you so often that you are going to reward me with lots and lots and lots of tomatoes!" I thought, innocently.

As it turns out, optimum tomato-growing temperature is between 65 and 80 degrees. Ha, ha, ha! We hit 80 degrees in Small Town in May and haven't looked back.

So my tomato crop was easily held by the Spongebob Squarepants plate and bowl Husband brought back from our Washington trip as souvenirs for the Boys who stayed home. Apparently he thinks we still have toddlers, which at least puts my tomato misconceptions in perspective if we're measuring degree of misconception.

Next year I think I'll grow cacti.

1 comment:

  1. Amanda was saying that her corn plants look great but aren't growing ears. Don't think they've had that many tomatoes either. I noticed yesterday that my Rose of Sharon trees weren't showing many blooms and they usually love hot weather. Well, this morning, they were all out in bloom in the cool, but this afternoon, the leaves are wilting. I don't water the yard as a rule and don't think I'll start now. So evidently, the Rose of Sharon has a heat limit too. I was thinking earlier that probably our problem is that we haven't had any hurricanes down south to speak of, to blow our heat out of here. Looks like there is a chance of one developing now. csl