Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Planting time!!

This time of year is SOO exciting, but also a little stressful at times, because I have so much to get done outside!  The seedlings are officially in the ground and covered with milk jugs (a tip from a friend of mine to protect them and create a sort of “greenhouse” effect while young.)

 I learned how to do a garden about 6 years ago (from the same friend who told me how to make yogurt), and every year my garden is a little better than the year before.

I LOVE tomatoes so there is nothing better than a home-grown summer tomato which is why I became interested in gardening in the first place.  A garden is also the best way to ensure your family isn't getting any pesticides and eating all natural fruits and veggies.  I've been told that when you grow your own tomatoes, they always taste great, but that just isn't true. 

My first year with tomatoes was dreadful!  I have just a few tomato plants, each of which had about 7 green tomatoes from august until about mid-september when they finally turned light pink (not the pretty heirloom pink, but hot-house-store-bought-pink), and they were some of the most mealy, flavorless tomatoes I've ever had!  

I'm not sure what happened that year, but after that, I began to go to the local farmer's co-op to get my soil tested so they could tell me exactly what I needed to add to my soil.  This was SOO helpful, although my second year of tomatoes were only a little better than the first.  I've learned new things each year, but I mainly enjoy the fruits of my labor more than the labor itself.  

It has become a favorite time of year for me to watch a little seed turn into a seedling, into a huge plant that bears beautiful fruits. My mouth begins to water as I see the first fruit hanging on the vine, just thinking about slicing, salting, and eating that first ripe tomato!

Last year’s garden was the best ever!  Although I usually just like to hoard them and eat them all by myself, I actually had so many that I could share them this year, and even can my own salsa!

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