Monday, May 6, 2013

Planting Tomatoes Early

Sunday I used Art's sturdy cart, garbage-picked from under the El tracks (pause for low bow)... bring back the tomatoes Bruce and Blake took last week to put under the lights. Here they are, with some burgeoning basil.

The master plan: plant tomatoes about two weeks early for our region (at least this has been the case for the last 50 years). With the weather changing dramatically and my work schedule tight, I either plant today or in two weeks. So I'm going for it.

The forecast looks promising, a nice period of temps in the 70s and 60s with lows in the 50s and high 40s. OK, so there's a high in the 30s in there too. Since all weather bets are off, I'm willing to try it and hopeful the plants will be hardend off if temperatures drop.

We've got the low tunnel on the roof to shelter these babies during the hardening off period. I took the tomatoes up yesterday as I prepped their SIPs and they did fine last night (I planted six today).

By the way, I'm planting all our tomatoes this year in 5-gal food-grade buckets, using fabric tapes to wick water from the reservoir. With automatic watering on the roof, the need for buckets with a larger volume (and reservoir) seems limited:

I wonder if we're starting the tomatoes too early. They're more than ready to be transplanted.
 Some are even setting flowers.
The plants themselves look terrific. Thanks, Bruce, for tending and befriending. Happy growing, everyone.

1 comment:

Amber Freda said...

Hey, really very helpful post. I will definitely try this. Thanks for sharing!
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