Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Tomato Love


A garden is always a series of losses set against a few triumphs, like life itself.
May Sarton


Through the years I have written about my tomato woes -- how each year I plant them in great anticipation -- accompanied by trepidation. I don't have much luck. Some years my plants just sit there all summer, same size as when I planted them. Some years in our drought, I can't keep up with the watering and they just plain give up. Some years we reach above 90 degrees very early and the blossoms won't set. It's always something.

You might recall these lovelies from previous posts. 

Scorched

A bountiful harvest


Hopeful beginning, but just didn't go anywhere.

Never one to give up completely, this year I tried again. The early spring rains in Texas were most helpful in getting things going. I planted my tomatoes in another place in the garden and no kidding, they began to thrive.

My cages hopeful for fulfillment.

I tried something new here - sort of an instant caprese salad. Basil on top and the tomato coming out of the bottom.

I watered, I fertilized. I begged my husband, my daughter-in-law, anyone to water if I was out of town.  Progress.






Now, every tale must have conflict. Right? RIGHT? That must explain why when I returned from the lake this past weekend, some little #@$%^%$%^$%!!!!! animal had stolen that large tomato growing out in the garden.  Never ceases to amaze me what can make me sad, mad, and glad as there are a few hopefuls still out there on another plant ---


And I did get to observe some monarch caterpillars devouring my fennel (gladly I'll sacrifice my fennel froths for monarchs.)


I'm going to be away from my garden for a couple weeks. During that time, my green beans will produce a massive crop.

Wait, that's the morning glories combined with some green beans.

The Turk's Cap will bloom along with the petunias and a few other beauties.









Send good vibes that my middle son will water my only orange on my orange tree.

Alas a happy ending. Although I'm certain the Texas heat will totally debilitate my garden in my absence, I take comfort in the fact that I will eat this beauty before I leave. 


Between the cost of water in Texas, the fertilizer, the initial plant and every one's watering time and attention, that little nugget probably only cost about $500. 

Happy Gardening Everyone.

24 comments:

  1. This has been a rough year for many gardeners including me. It is so discouraging love and find they die or someone steals the fruit!! We are determined folks, though and will live to fight another day!

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    1. Indeed. I just learned how to pollinate my cucumbers since there are no bees. We'll see if my interference with Mother Nature works.

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  2. I can SO relate! Love the pictures, love the May Sarton quote.
    Enjoy your five hundred dollar tomato!

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    1. Weird thing about that quote. I had just been thinking about May Sarton as began my quote search. I wondered who I had lent that book of hers to and Bingo, saw the quote. Knew it was the one.

      Gonna LOVE that tomato.

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  3. Oh, that is a beautiful red tomato. Glad to know you'll have the chance to taste it. It does look just perfect. :-)

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    1. I'm thinking it is going to taste perfect also.

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  4. May Sarton was certainly a wise woman! Regardless of the price-tag, I'm sure that will be the most delicious tomato ever.

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  6. Been getting lots here. I also am out in the field so hope someone is keeping everything picked.

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    1. Maybe the birds are having a feast! Hope you get to have some of them. I can only imagine how well they are growing at your place.

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  7. Oh gosh yes, you have to be a tough gardener there in TX. My father gave up--the constant water rationing in South TX made it impossible.

    I hope that one tomato hits the spot and that your son does his part with the water.

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    1. He will. Plus, it is raining so that will help. We can only water once a week, so I have to hand water the rest of the time. If the drought continues, I will have to tone it way down next year. I normally figure after July 1 is a lost cause for production. Too hot, as I'm certain your dad can agree.

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  8. Everything looks great to me. I have a black thumb...

    Just think of the lost tomato as a kindness extended to an animal in need at that moment. Less of a loss that way, eh?

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  9. Oh dear, your garden looks so pretty! I hope you can keep it going and actually enjoy a great harvest this year!

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    1. Thank you. Hard to imagine how it turns into a wasteland as the summer progresses. I hope it keeps going also.

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  10. Holy Mackeral! That is one sad story!!! But take heart, the only thing I was able to harvest from all the yards and gardens I ever owned was what previous owners had left behind...rhubarb, ancient roses for potpourri, peonies, May's bridal wreath. Nothing I ever planted yielded. I call myself the Impatient Gardener.

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    1. HaHa! Impatient Gardener. I like that.

      I wish I could stick in some rhubarb, peonies and bridal wreath. I'd have tons of them. Seems anything you stuck in the soil up north just grew and grew. Oh, well. struggle is supposed to make us stronger. Right? RIGHT?

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  11. The ups and down of growing tomatoes... The good is really good and the bad so frustrating especially when it involves thieves in the night....:)

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  12. HA! A $500 tomato. Quite right. Stinking tomatoes! The rest of your garden looks beautiful! The flowers! WOW!
    My tomatoes are always huge, massive, overgrown, giants every year. It is the freaking peas that I have trouble with. No matter what I do I can't get those stinking things to grow! BAH!!!!

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  13. You are so right that it's always something. Out here, it's the deer. They eat my aloe vera. Well, they don't eat it. They bite it off and and then spit it out. Grr.

    Unless you have an 8' fence or 8 dogs in your yard, gardens are just a gourmet buffet for them.

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  14. You make me wish I liked tomatoes!

    I do know I HATE little critters that eff with my plantings, so I hooted when I read your rage. So where you going for a few weeks here?

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