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Slow To Start But Good At The End

The growing season started late this year because winter seemed to last forever.  Vegetables that need warmer temperatures like tomatoes and peppers grew slowly at the beginning.  I started to germinate the seeds in March but couldn’t put anything in the ground until May.  Once in the ground, they seemed not to want to grow at all so I wasn’t expecting much from these two vegetables this year.  But as soon as the temperature reach 80º F, they grew like grass especially the tomatoes.  I have to tie them up once every couple of days so the stems won’t break.  A few of them are taller than me now.

It turned out to be a great year for tomatoes.  Though it’s hot during the day, it’s much cooler at night.  There have been only a few high humidity days so far.   Hot and dry during the day and cooler at night is good for tomato and chili pepper.  It’s harder for disease to develop on the leaves.  I actually have to cut the leaves off the tomatoes so the fruits can get some sun, ripen faster and get some air flow between plants.  I slowly cut from the bottom up.

I picked some of the small ones (the Ceylon) this week.  Cherry and Grape tomatoes are still green since they are self-sown so they sprouted up much later than the ones I germinated in the house.  The larger ones like Cherokee Purple and Rose have just started to turn.  I can hardly wait to sink my teeth into them over the kitchen sink!

Tomato plants crowded with leaves

Tomato plants crowded with leaves

Ceylon tomato, a medium sized tomato, I grew for the first time this year. Plenty of 1.5 to 2 inches fruits

Ceylon tomato, a medium sized tomato, I grew for the first time this year. Plenty of 1.5 to 2 inches fruits

I have no idea what this one is.  I picked up an organic heirloom tomato from the farmer's market last year and we loved it.  So I kept some seeds.  They are pretty big and look like ribbed pears.

I have no idea what this one is. I picked up an organic heirloom tomato from the farmer’s market last year and we loved it. So I kept some seeds. They are pretty big and look like ribbed pears.

This one grew from seeds of the same tomato above but probably has to fight for food with the asparagus next to it so the fruits are much slimmer.

This one grew from seeds of the same tomato above but probably has to fight for food with the asparagus next to it so the fruits are much slimmer.

These Cherokee purple are too big for their own good. The one in the middle is around 4.5 inch across.  Their weight broke the stem.

These Cherokee purple are too big for their own good. The one in the middle is around 4.5 inch across. Their weight broke the stem.

Another Cherokee purple, our favorite, started to turn.  The stem also bent from the weight.

Another Cherokee purple, our favorite, started to turn. The stem also bent from the weight.