Saturday, September 1, 2012

2012 Tomato Plantings (thus far)

It may only be August (well ok September by a whole 10 hours, but these seedlings went in a week ago so I'm still claiming August) but it is tomato time again on the balcony. This time of year is still pretty cold and wet and wintery so most Melbourne gardens can't plants such frost tender crops yet but the balcony garden has its own little microclimate and it is awesome. It means tomatoes are best planted as early as possible, to get the most out of them before the myserious wilt hits. Last year I didn't plant many because of the disaster the year before (see aforementioned wilt) but this year I returned with cautious optimism to a slightly larger planting of love apples.

In the first corner we have a red tumbler, first 'mato in and already growing strong.

In the green pot we have two mortgage lifters (my favourite) and a slightly sickly looking black russian. I couldn't get a decent photo of these and the perspective is really out on the first one - but they do have quite a bit of room in here. I've grown corn in this pot before, and zucchinis and other large plants so the 'matoes will have plenty of space.

In here we have four cherry tomatoes, two golden, two red.

And this lone ranger is another golden cherry. He isn't in the best spot in the garden, tucked away behind the mint but really he is just a leftover seedling so if he thrives it is simply a bonus.

Mega pot will also be housing some tomatoes, namely another black russian and two green zebras plus another one or two depending on my whims. Just have to wait to find seedlings. The balcony garden may be ahead of the rest of Melbourne but the nurseries are catering to the masses and don't have a large selection in stock yet. I just lucked upon these seedlings in Van Loon's nuresry in Ocean Grove while visitng the lovely other half's mother, but most Melbourne nurseries aren't stocked with as many yet.

I can smell the BLTs already - or maybe that's just the roast veg and quinoa salad I'm making for lunch!

Oh and here is the  new birdseye chilli. He just wanted to say he was planted last weekend too!  Whatever ... you're just a chilli!


Missy Piggy said...

I just planted some tomatoes too...but from seeds. So far nothings happening - even though I check on them about 12 times each day. Hurry up tomatoes!

Michelle said...

You continually amaze me with the bounty that you harvest from your balcony! It looks like you are off to a great start with the maters. I hope the wilt stays away this year.

prue said...

Miss Piggy - don' worry, hang tight and they'll grow soon

Michelle - let's hope they survived the gale force winds we've had for the last couple of days

Megan said...

How big are those pots that you've put several plants into? I don't have much space, but it's going to be very sad to not have all my varieties! How are you doing that?

prue said...

Hi Megan - I use various sizes of pots, the biggest being two polystyrene contained put together (with one side of each cut out.) They're a good 60-70cms wide and about 40-50cms deep 6-7 tomatoes in each. I crowd them in, much closer than recommended. Some I have in single pots about 30cms wide. I stake them well and feed them as needed. It really is up to you how close you are confortable placing them, but with great soil you can certainly push the boundaries. Good luck with the gardening