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this year's tomatoes
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dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 35409
Location: yes
PostPosted: Fri Apr 19, 19 5:07 pm    Post subject: this year's tomatoes  Reply with quote    

5 burpee big boy plugs ordered

if all survive to grow on i might have to get a bit imaginative in the use of sunny walls or i need to work out how to trail one on a shed roof, last time i tried trailing stuff it insisted on vertical and flop

50 litres of levington 3 to top out matured guinea pig compost

i will report back, last time was surprising and this time i am going for bigger containers to reduce the maintenance, watering twice a day is a pita but a plant sitter might manage every other day with little harm

optimism is it's own enemy with my tomato history but last time with bb's turned out ok.

outside with shading from buildings etc etc is challenging but there are three sunny months on several walls and surfaces. those are half dayish for direct sun but the warm brickwork seems to make up for the lack of lumens.

sgt.colon



Joined: 27 Jul 2009
Posts: 6467
Location: Just south of north.
PostPosted: Fri Apr 19, 19 7:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Good luck with them DPack. We expect pictures when they are in full flow.

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 10818

PostPosted: Sat Apr 20, 19 7:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Yes brickwork can make a big difference. In our first house, with reflected heat from the walls, we could get a rotary line of washing dry in about an hour. Good luck with them. I think I will grow courgette, squash and peppers in the greenhouse again this year, perhaps have another go at tomatoes next year.

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 35409
Location: yes
PostPosted: Wed Apr 24, 19 5:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

the plugs arrived, fairly well packed but a little travel worn from overnight in the post they are undamaged if a bit flat.

they did post a sixth one in which is nice just in case

anyway they are potted up into 2" cells of compost but when i saw them my first thought was where are the pumps and can i get a safe outdoor rig up and running in a week or so.

it almost makes sense as i could use more wall if water and nutrients just flowed along a bit of guttering but the care factor is even greater than soil unless you go full auto on the situation even then it takes somebody who knows to check it is working properly .

i have 4 decent soil in a container ( fish boxes are ace ) positions but i do have a 2 bigboy size, perfect for a channel and frame rig on a wall spots

if i rigged it in a way that was practical (delete from practical and add ) but practical and sensible are not the same .

if all survive i will plant what i can in fish boxes and give the others to a good home

Mistress Rose



Joined: 21 Jul 2011
Posts: 10818

PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 19 6:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Sounds complicated Dpack. Perhaps you and HL ought to get together on this as it sounds right up his street for ideas, perhaps with you doing the making.

sgt.colon



Joined: 27 Jul 2009
Posts: 6467
Location: Just south of north.
PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 19 7:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

I use a watering can.

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 35409
Location: yes
PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 19 10:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    



aye hose for drink and can for food works for me apart from 10 ft up a wall.

if it was more than 2 spaces it might be worth doing.

10 plants need the same pumps etc as two and a full gable end or such like can be a massive growing space but i have about 6 sq meters that gets half day sun so as a cost benefit thing it probably is not worth the effort.

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 35409
Location: yes
PostPosted: Thu Apr 25, 19 3:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

all 6 have recovered from the journey, spread out and grown half an inch since yesterday morning.

i remember that from last time, they start as little boys but get big fast.
container size was an issue with one of them so this time that spot gets a much larger box of soil

all boxes will get an evaporation reduction cap of sack n gravel rather than trying under planting in a water sensitive situation.
3 times a day with a hose in hot weather was daft but effective, depending on what guinea pig compost i can steal back from the sammison tribe who moved into it a few years ago i am hoping for at least 30 litres per plant which is a fullish fish box and a top up as it settles and to earth up the stem ( hairs can root ) over the first couple of weeks once they get planted out .

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 35409
Location: yes
PostPosted: Tue Apr 30, 19 10:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

so far so good

from a plug the size of my thumb end to roots filling a 2" propagator cell with seed compost and growing 3 times the leaf area and height on top is rather impressive.

they are now in deep 7" pots with innes N3, as the weather is 9c min overnight they are also having their first sleep out.

with some toms that would have been a month's worth of development in the conditions they have had for a week

pampered, a bit, treated carefully ,yep but mostly down to really good F1 genetics.

iirc creating the seed is a matter of crossing 2 stable strains to give a beasty big , ace eating but non stable offspring.
by stable i mean if you have a patch of them and bees do their thing and you plant seed from your toms, next year's toms are like last year's ones.
iirc both parents are pretty ok but nowt special, the cross is rather unusually vigorous and the tomatoes are better than either mum's or dad's ones.

plant genetics is fun even if mum or dad can be one plant, 2 plants in both or either direction or oops here comes some random pollen or even stuff that i think i will clone myself and snap off an arm


re the plugs the supplier of those was pot and grow , based in scunthorpe and they have an ebay presence so you don't have to visit

they might have sold out of big boys as we got 6 of the last dozen of lots but if that is the quality they work to they are worth a thought for plugs, domestic or even small commercial

plug folk plug

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 35409
Location: yes
PostPosted: Tue Apr 30, 19 11:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

ps as they gain height they get earthed up ( like cousin spud ) so these are now planted so as the lowest leaf stems are at soil depth and several inches of purpleish hairy stem is now starting to root .

note to self, yer daft old fool show em pictures , i must try to work out how to make camera on new phone talk to ds or i need to resurrect the proper camera which is 15 " away from where i am sitting and use that

Snowball
Downsizer Moderator


Joined: 28 Oct 2004
Posts: 6212
Location: swindon
PostPosted: Wed May 01, 19 9:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

We have four varieties growing including tigrella.
Trying outside growing for the first time this year.

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 35409
Location: yes
PostPosted: Wed May 01, 19 10:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote    

my top tip for outdoor tomatoes is to keep them mobile ie in pots until they are a decent size to tie in to the support then plant and secure them in one go.
the run and grab to save them if it looks like hail or a late frost while they are growing on and hardening off is easier if they can be moved rather than wrapped.

Shan



Joined: 13 Jan 2009
Posts: 8059
Location: South Wales
PostPosted: Wed May 01, 19 12:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

Even though mine are in the greenhouse, I always keep them in pots. I just find it easier and of course at the end of the season, I dump the soil from the pots into the carrot bed.

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 35409
Location: yes
PostPosted: Sun May 12, 19 1:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

after a few days hiding from cold,wind and rain they are back in the sun

at the mo they have about 6" underground and 6" above so hopefully they will be just about to outgrow their pots as the warmer weather starts, fingers n hooves etc.

the aphids noticed in minutes but slaughter by hand ensued and hopefully the sunshine will make the toms toxic enough to repel boarders asap. if not they will be washed which i don't like doing but aphids like it less

i have places for 4 but 2 will go to new homes if there are still 6 in a week or two

because of the orientation of the yard 4 places with at least half a days sun for 3 months is the best i can manage but work with what you have can be ok for summer ( a cool year makes the growing season too long and the crop misses out on light when it needs it to ripen.

dpack



Joined: 02 Jul 2005
Posts: 35409
Location: yes
PostPosted: Thu May 16, 19 7:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote    

3 in fish boxes , one in a big window box style trough that can be earthed up if needs be.

i managed to get another few inches of stem buried on this transplant so now they are about 10" down for the base of the roots.

even in the short time they were in levington 3 in deep 7" pots the roots had got to the edges and were holding the compost together reasonably well.

these lads have vigour

one of the 2 spares has a home to go to which is nice .

the guinea pig compost was pretty good when i dragged it out and sorted it into 120 ltr of well rotted and 100 ltr of part rotted to add to the bramble prunings in a dumpy bag for next time.

the tops are cored in levington 3 with 30 litres of gp compost around that

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