Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Ninety-five and Counting ...

That's right -- 95 tomato plants so far in individual pots.
 I'm running out of small pots.
Adam offered to sift his homemade potting mix, removing the twigs, pine straw, pecans, and pine cones. Now I have this luscious stuff to pot with:
 And it's absolutely free. Better than store-bought potting mix. I'm tickled!!
In addition to the Ninety-five, I have this flat of Brandywine and Mini-Orange tomatoes, sprouting nicely. What shall I do with ALL these tomato plants?
 I refuse to get myself into the pickle of last year: tucking leggy tomato plants along fence rows and in random available spots in the garden. It was a nightmare of tomatoes! This year I shall choose my favorite 65 plants, and I shall sell or give away the rest with nary a pang! I can't keep them all!
This is my biggest tomato plant thus far, supposedly a Beefsteak variety. Three of them look quite strange. They smell like tomato plants, and their structure is like a tomato.

But their leaves are large and smooth, almost like a bean leaf. What's up with that? (I just google-hunted and discovered that some tomatoes have what's called a "potato-leaf," a smooth-edged leaf. Potato-leaf tomatoes are always heirlooms, not hybrids. Cool!)
Elsewhere in the garden, the peas are coming along a treat, as they say across the pond.

And the radishes are just beginning to show some swollen root. We'll be eating them soon.
Adam's potatoes are doing great! This year I suspect potatoes will be a big success after our "learning opportunities" of last year, haha!
long potato row -- as they grow up, Adam covers their stems
 We revised our greenhouse window. The temperature-controlled device that opened it automatically wasn't working well; it only opened it about a foot. Since the opening was at the bottom, it didn't efficiently release heat, which rises. So Adam changed the window, putting the hinge at the bottom.

He rigged up a rope that I can easily pull from inside the greenhouse, lowering or raising the window just as I like. I loop it around a screw to hold it.
And since its open at the top, it does a better job of letting the heat out. Plus, it can lay all the way down on the ground! Sometimes the homemade option is a lot better!
Do you remember the two pepper plants we dug out of the garden last fall and kept on the front porch/greenhouse all winter? Bless them, we put them back in the garden, leafless and pathetic except for their drying-up red peppers, still hanging on tenaciously.
I thought, "Well, they're dead." But I do like to give plants a chance if I can. Then I noticed this:
One of them's coming back! Yippee! Not that I eat hot peppers, haha! But I enjoy seeing plants demonstrate the zeal for life that all God's creation seems to have.
Our strawberries have not come up at all, and we're wondering if the whole bed died.
Our horseradish is amazing.
The asparagus is gorgeous.
The chickens continue to thrive. Little Snow is slowly insinuating herself into the flock.
The bees are fine, but the swarm Adam caught did not stay. They often do that. Bees have their own preferences, like us all, and will find a home they like.
That's it from the farm! I hope your April is humming along nicely.


Welcome to the farm! Please let me hear from you ~