Tuesday, March 16, 2010

These are the questions

1. Tomatoes. Where to put the tomatoes? According the extremely loose rotational system, they were supposed to go in 2 this summer. They can't go in 1 because they were in 1 last summer, and also to a certain degree the summer before. Really, 2 would be perfect once I pull out and devour all the bolted (raab!) brassicas, except that last summer the tomato plants that were near the kale were half as big as their otherwise identically raised brethren. Some companion sheets that you find on the web say that tomatoes and brassicas are friends, and usually that is enough to make me discount all the other other information for that website. Did no one check? Or did they just have completely opposite results? So 2 is feeling bad to me. Even once they're gone, all the brassica-promoting chemistry (what Steve Solomon calls root exudates) and microbes are still there, right? And that bed was brassica central this winter. I wish I had someone else's experience to back mine up, but I'm not going to get half as many tomatoes this summer testing my hypothesis. So. 3. The cover, which we would need to use to keep the tomatoes growing anyway, is already there. There's been kale in there, but not much, and not for long. But this is what it looks like:

So I just clean it out on the double, right? Eat a lot of greens, leave some parsley and almost all the leeks and just stick those little tomatoes in there and hope for the best. This is what I'm going to do, although I don't like it. Harvesting to bare ground is not my strong suit.

2. The new boxes.

Hand me downs. Treated wood. Flowers. Melons. Broccoli?

3. Starts

Since I did forget these guys on the picnic table last night and they came out ok (although watch those f*ing broccolis just bolt in three weeks) it seems like it's time to just get them in already.
- Radicchio? Where? And why is it not red? I thought I got this variety specifically because the stuff (treviso?) that I had the last two years wasn't red, wasn't heading, grew great and was not what I wanted at all. But here I am with a new seed packet and green seedlings.
- Broccoli. Issue as stated above. These things, if they are anything like the ones that bolted prematurely in fall 08, will get giant. Why am I so determined to grow them? Well, why is sprouting broccoli so hard to get in the stores? Huh?
- Chard. These guys are so flopsy. They will be so happy to be up to their necks in dirt. And so pretty with the flowers. But the treated bed thing. They are at least three years old. Does it really matter still?
- Sunflowers. Still inside but so big. They are getting squeezed as I type. Experiment continues.

4. Will the new gravel pit hold its draw all summer? Will it be shaded enough? Where does one get (small, metal, cheap) kids pails and shovels and rakes? Hmm. Hope it's the goodwill.

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