Monday, March 8, 2010

Big Day in Gifu!

Yesterday was the day! The big event of the year! And I almost missed it...luckily, I married someone with a much better memory than myself. For some reason, I thought I planted tomatoes at the beginning of April last year, but no, my husband was right, it was March 1! Luckily, he kept nagging me to check, and I had recorded it on my blog. Yesterday was a perfect sunny, warm, not windy day for planting tomatoes.

This year, I convinced my husband to label all the tomatoes he planted. Last year, I labelled the ones I planted, but he didn't label his. He has a good memory, but last year he forgot which was which and this year we planted 112 of 18 different varieties, so there is no way anyone would remember.
M missed the tomato planting, but was home in time to do the artichokes (our new experimental vegetable for 2010, Cal Green Globe). Here she is sprinkling rice husks on top.
And next the first photo of our babies. 112 tomatoes and 8 zucchini in this photo.

Small tomato varieties include: jelly bean (red and yellow), sugar lump, black plum, chadwick's cherry, gold currant, sweet orange II, reisentraube. The last 5 are from seeds left over from last year, so we don't know if they will come up.
We also planted a grape tomato herein known as "jiichan (grandpa) tomato." This was our first attempt at tomato seed saving. Last year was a terrible year for tomatoes in Gifu. Most of ours didn't survive the summer and those that did, didn't produce very well. However, my father-in-law had one kind of grape tomato (he doesn't remember what kind he bought) that not only survived, but thrived and produced bushels of tomatoes. Okay, I admit, I don't know how much a bushel is, but he gave us two supermarket bags full a week from August until the end of November. They were very tasty, and were known in our house as "jiichan tomato".

Regular tomato varieties include: Cherokee Purple, Costoluto Genovese, Mortgage Lifter (I admit I got this one for the name), Money Maker (this was my favorite last year, but I only had 2 seeds, 1 plant, 2 tomatoes, but they were SOO good). Also seeds left over from last year: Black Krim, Marmande Super, Big Rainbow, Evergreen and Brandywine.

Two types of zucchini, Black Beauty (same as last year), and a new type for us, Lebanese Light Green.
And here they are in our itty bitty green house. After this we also planted cucumbers and artichokes, so the greenhouse is ready to burst. We want to get a bigger one, but have no good place to put it.


thefukases said...

ooohhh already? Is it not snowing buckets today? I need to plant up my seeds but I need to wait for the snow to clear first....

And labelling= very good idea! I didn't label my green tomatoes last year and spent half the season waiting for them to ripen!

Jo Tomooka said...

Wow - that's a lot of tomatoes! I have planted a few already too - perhaps if they do well this year I can swap a few seeds with you next year. Do you read the "down to earth" blog? She has just written a great article about planting tomato seeds...
Good luck with the seedlings!

Xana said...

labeling- The girls do their bit by making sure we have enough popsicle sticks!

A seed swap would be great. I think we need to work on our seed saving technique a bit. I will definitely check out "down to earth". Thanks for the suggestion!

Xana said...
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