Monday, March 23, 2009

Autumn Tomatoes

So far so good, with Siletz tomatoes ripening at the moment, which is a lot quicker than I imagined. After a week in Adelaide we came home to ripe tomatoes, which although aren't as big as the ones that grew outside during Summer, they are still a nice sandwich size. The 'Little Hearts' are forming fruit, although I pulled 3 plants out yesterday, as I'm having second thought about them as the weather is definitely cooling quick this season. Even staying with what's growing in the hothouse (3 x Siletz & 2 x Little Heart), we should get tomatoes for another 6-8 weeks.

Here's the ripening Siletz this weekend.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Adelaide Tomatoes

While in Adelaide recently, I managed to get hold of some tomatoes that are for sale at private residences along Tapleys Hill Road in Fulham Gardens. These tomatoes have quite thick flesh under the skin, very meaty and quite a few seeds. I cut one for a look and scooped out the seed and was amazed at what was left, possibly a good tomato for making sauce from.

The next day while at Central Market in the centre of Adelaide, I found most sellers of tomatoes carried this variety, labeled as 'Sun Ripened Vine Tomatoes'. The market price was $1.99kg, quite a bit cheaper than the $4.00kg I got mine for.

I know a few who would grow these tomatoes for sauce, so I may add a few plants to my seedling sale.

What do you do when you find some interesting tomatoes like these when away from home for an extended period - you'd probably want to ferment them, which turned out a simple task. The seed, juice and pulp was collected in a plastic drink bottle and allowed to 'rest' in the warmth of the car for a few days until a good scum had formed on top (lid removed outside car regularly to let the gases out). Then a simple task to wash them and dry them before returning home. A visit to a kitchenware store and I was soon able to wash them through a tea strainer, which was compact enough to fit in luggage and be used again.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Second Crop Doing Well

The plants in my second crop for the year are doing well, with fruit swelling every day on my Siletz plants.

In the hothouse with them are two Little Heart plants which I'm pinning my hopes on getting at least one ripe fruit for seed for next season, which will put me one filial generation ahead with the grow out I'm doing on this variety. So far so good, but I won't be too disappointed if they don't make it through to maturity, I'll have at least tried.

Monday, March 9, 2009

The End Is In Sight

The end for some Tomato Plants came a bit early and we have now got four plants with ripening fruit on them which we'll keep going for another two weeks. We're getting to the stage we need to have a spell away from Tomatoes, as we've been eating them since mid November, but we've had a productive year and no-one's complaining.

At present the three 'Siletz' plants in the hothouse have good sized fruit forming, while the 'Little Heart' plants both in the garden and hothouse are growing well.

I've dug over an area to plant our Garlic on the 20th of March - so all in all, the garden is still getting some attention, albeit minimal. The Peppers are starting to ripen now and seed is being collected from overloaded plants, so some seed will now be passed on to those who wanted it.