It is a good day to think about tomatoes, in part because the weather is completely the opposite of good tomato-growing weather - in fact it feels like someone is throwing rotten squishy icy fruit at us - and also because if you haven't ordered your seeds yet, you might want to consider getting around to it, since you'll be wanting to start them inside in about a month. A month, mind you - not today, not next week, unless you are prepared to care for enormous tomato seedlings until it's warm enough to plant them outside. A month, or quite possibly more than that. I keep meaning to wait until about March 30.
If you still have tomato seeds left over from last year, never fear, they are good to go. In fact, if you've kept your seeds under cool, dry conditions, they are good for several years. Experts disagree as to how many - tomato seeds five years old or even more seem to germinate at reasonable rates, but possibly the resulting plants are not as vigorous.
But even if we have enough seeds left over to plant twenty gardens, most of us can't resist acquiring a few new varieties. I have succumbed, this year, to two more Wild Boar Farms developments: a cherry called Blue Gold Berries (yellow with blue shading, as described), and a crazy multi-color small slicer called Cosmic Eclipse. Haven't yet decided what else I'm growing, but I will have to restrain myself, since I only have room for
I quizzed a few other GIEI bloggers about their tomato-growing plans, and here's what they said:
Kent Philips: "This year, I'm growing my usual Pink Brandywine, Sungold, Big Rainbow and Big Mama. I'm trialing Gilbertie and Joe Thienman Australian Heart."
Nancy Taylor Robson is dealing with a greenhouse emergency and hasn't made all her choices yet, but she is thinking about growing Persimmon, Mortgage Lifter, Beefsteak (organic), Big Mama hybrid, Big Rainbow, Sungold and Sunchocula.
Sabine Harvey: "I am growing my yearly favorites: Gilberti, Juliet and Cherokee Purple. New this year are: Sungold, Persimmon, Australian Heart, Striped Roman and Iron Lady. I may add one more."
Let us know what tomatoes you're trying this year!