I am simply amazed at the tomato patch this year. All of my plants are growing very fast, and many of them are already setting fruit, althought not yet ripe. This is a stark contrast from past years. I am unsure what single factor is contributing mostly to this growth, but there have been many changes from previous years:
1.) I’ve started the seeds in the greenhouse at about the same time as I started them in my house last year. There is no comparison, as the greenhouse tomatoes have always been blasted with direct rays from the sun. Plants which are started indoors, sheltered by the roof are stunted when they are moved outside, and it can take a week or more for them to adjust, before they can begin growing.
2.) It’s been a hot dry year so far, unlike last year which was cool, and wet. I’ve also changed up my watering patterns. I now water half the garden at a time, staggering the watering over two days. This allows more water to seep into the soil. Keep in mind my garden is on a slope, and I imagine it’s impossible to over water it.
3.) I’ve added truck loads of manure to the soil, including Bat Guano, Goat, Sheep, Horse and Cow Manure.
4.) There has been lots of help with planting, and weeding the soil. This keeps the soil loose, and helps oxygen and water seep into the dirt. If you think of plants like crystals, it’s easier to understand what will make them grow well.
Some friends and I recently went garden spying….. No we were not dressed in black with fish net stockings wrapped snuggly around our mugs, but I imagine it would be a great photo. We all piled into my car and drove around looking at other gardens. It’s a way to judge my progress, as I’ve been watching a few peoples gardens for several years. There are quite a few excellent gardeners in the area, and many of them are exceptionally consistent. Everything in this world can be measured if you know what kind of ruler to use, these consistent gardeners are the best tape measure I’ve found. Perhaps I should stop and thank a few of them.
All in all, I guess you know your getting old when you go joy riding with two attractive young ladies for the purpose of looking at gardens = )