For those of you who pop past here regularly (and for all my real life friends who had to put up with it all) tomatoes have been an obsession. I grew more than twenty plants over the space of 6 months on the balcony. There were copious amounts of updates on here, and all the uni folk got to hear about the progress of the plants almost daily (Sorry)
But thanks to this wilt, and the changing of the seasons the tomato obsession has waned by necessity. I still have a couple growing but they will be turfed soon because this wilt is just out of control. Over the winter I will grow one inside, and hope it does not continue the wilt. Fingers crossed. Toes crossed. Legs crossed. Arms ... With the obsession at the tail end I decided I needed a new one, and one appeared quite by accident. Snow peas. I don't like beans much, unless they are fresh and not too stringy. Taste is ok, it is just the texture. But snow peas, they are a delight. Lovely and crunchy is salads and stirfries they are a friend in my kitchen anyday. They are now growing in no less than three large pots on the balcony and I am considering putting in more after the final tomato cull. (Don't worry i thinned them out after taking the below photo, I think one too many peas fell in the same area!!!)
They all get odd and individual trellises. Some get bamboo candle holders (because the nursery was curiously devoid of stakes), some have old tomato stakes that have been bleached and washed to rid any residual effects of this wilt incase it mutates and crosses species (don't laugh, anything can happen in the Balcony Garden) Some are just thrust up against the dividing wall, which isn't a wall really but a bit of metal with tiny holes. I am hoping that the snow peas will latch onto this impromptu trellis and give us some peace and quiet from the snoooty girl who lives there. She is less than friendly, maybe giving her brother some tomatoes was a bad idea! Who woulda known neighbourly niceness could backfire.
I am also growing some seedlings for friends as well as myself. Here is a picture of one. Whiles't snapping this picture I also managed to catch a glimpse of his own view. Et voila - this is how a snow pea sprout views my balcony!
For Autumn and into Winter snow peas will be the new tomatoes. Less colourful it is true and not a huge amount of heirloom varieties but these goliath ones are powdery mildew resistant and hopefully will do just fine! As for the tomato obsession, it lingers, and will manifest itself in behaviours such as lurking around northern hemisphere gardening blogs in the hope of vicarious pictorial tomatoey goodness.