Primary Earth-friendly Gardening Tenents:

*Tolerate minimal damage to plants and lawn from pests. *Build and maintain healthy soil by using compost and natural soil amendments. *Use chemicals as a last resort. *Use native plants when possible. They are adapted to the climate, soil and area pests. *Attract Beneficial Insects to increase pollination and decrease harmful pests. *Conserve water by using responsible watering methods.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Tomato starts

I started most of my seeds indoors this year under grow lights, a new experience for me. As usual I completely over seeded tomatoes and have about 30 plants crammed onto my 5,000 square ft lot. A great majority of these tomatoes are Roma which are determinant and I sauce or stew to freeze for fall and winter. I also planted a few beefsteak and several brandywine. The brandywine are rather sensitive to space, water and light. I have noticed they do better in certain areas than others, while the Roma don't seem as picky. I plant lots of basil, much of it as a companion plant around the Roma tomatoes.

The tomato seedlings next move to the 4 shelf standing greenhouse for several weeks, until I move them to gallon pots and the cold frames. At this time I do pinch back the seed leaves and plant them deeper.
The cold frames were my best investment to date for my urban space!I did try the "wall of water" cloche, but found it cumbersome.
We have had an unusually hot summer so far and the tomatoes are doing extremely well!