Cape Mayhem Garden Update – Tomato Questions

Agridude - Garden OverviewIt’s been 2 weeks since I last updated everyone with how our cape mayhem garden is doing…sorry about that.  I went up to San Fran and Napa for a 5 day vacation, then to Big Bear for Grant’s birthday blowout.  Ill show you what’s going on in the garden, but my main focus is going to be on the tomatoes.  This year I have been removing the yellow leaves/dead branches on the plants.  I’m not sure if I should be.  You can tell in the picture on the left that the bottom third of so of my plants are pretty bare (notice how there are no leaves in the next two pictures).  I think as the tomato begins to fruit, it focuses on giving the water and nutrients to the fruit versus old branches/leaves.  Can anyone confirm this to ease my concerns that I’m doing something wrong?  This year I have also been watering way less than years past, just once or twice a week.  I wonder if that has anything to do with it.  To see if that is the issue, I have begun watering every other day.  I am going to buy some mulch this weekend as well to help with water conservation.  I will let you know what happens.

Agridude - Crnkovic Yugoslavian Tomato ClustersTo the right are my Crnkovic Yugoslavian tomatoes.  I have eaten 3 of these and they are uber good.  I just realized that I should take pictures of the whole plant so that you can see how many tomatoes are on this plant, they are everywhere.  Can’t wait for full on harvest mode so that I can eat caprese or bruschetta pretty much everyday. I brought in a green zebra and one of these in to work for an afternoon snack and everyone enjoyed it.

Agridude - Cherry Tomato Clusters RedHere’s a picture of our cherry tomatoes.  Again, I’ll take a picture so you can see the whole plant.  These are great for salads, I pulled 8 this morning.  One thing I have been noticing is that when I pick these, the skin splits.  Am I picking too early?  Are they just too juicy and bust the skin open?  Am I squeezing them too hard like Chris Farley in Tommy Boy?  After watching that clip, I need to watch this movie again ASAP.

Agridude - Corn GrowingTo the right are my 6 corn plants.  They are doing surprisingly well.  I poured a bunch of blood meal in this part of the garden to help the corn grow.  Blood meal contains tons of nitrogen and that is what makes plants grow.  I have been reading that you need a lot of corn plants in order for them to pollinate each other.  Anyone know if 6 is enough for that to happen?  Leave a comment or I’ll figure it out by the end of the season…

 

 

 

Agridude - Hot PeppersTo the left are my first super hot peppers forming.  I have this one in a pot at the garden and we should get plenty of these devils this year.  I cannot handle spicy food so I give most of these away.  Last year we made the mistake of using them in Mike’s chili and it was fiery hot and we ended up making rice to help contain the heat.

Agridude - Small Strawberry

 

We have 6 strawberries growing in pots and I found a few berries in there.  I honestly can say berries straight from the garden are the best tasting.  So good…wish we could get more out of the plants.  I also don’t know why, but they don’t grow very large for us.  Maybe it’s just my variety.

Agridude - Pete and PaulHere is Pete and I posing for a picture last Sunday after I was in Big Bear.  The hat I’m wearing is his although I should probably pick one up for myself.

This weekend I am going to the nursery, going to add my 3rd tray to the worm bin, try to ‘use’ my finsihed vermicompost in the garden and go to the Muir Street block party on Sat.  Should have lots of material to post on here next week.  Hope everyone has a great weekend!

Kooms Garden – Introduction to my Patio Garden in MN

Agridude - Kooms Patio GardenMy name is Brian and I live in the northern suburbs of Minneapolis.  I have a small patio that I have been growing a few plants on since I moved into this condo two years ago.  I am a chef at Muffuletta in the Park in St Paul MN.  My co worker and I have saved some heirloom tomato seeds and sprouted over 200 this year.  I gave six seedlings to another Agridude, Sam, for his work garden.  I also have two on my patio, along with hops, basil, thyme, and some lettuces and spinach.  I haven’t grown hops before but I do brew my own beer so I am hoping to get some off of this plant so that I can use it in my beer.  I am trying to start a micro brewing company called Brown Bottle Brewery.  I will be blogging this season to show what I am able to grow.

These pictures are from May 12th.  Paul was in town and we had a perfect early summer day to hang out and catch some rays while having some brews.  We invited some of our friends and Paul’s family over to hang out too.  Here are some pics:

Agridude - Tomatoes and HopsThe two pots closest to you are my tomatoes.  I am growing two heirloom tomatoes that we sprouted from the restaurant.  I can’t remenber what types they are, but I know they will be small cherry like tomatoes

I made the trellis by myself to grow the hops on.  I bought the root from my local home brewing store  and I was told to only let two sprout.  One of them did not make it so next year I’ll try something different.  These are supposed to grow 2 feet per week so I should have some great updated photos for you guys in a few weeks.

Agridude - Lettuce Spinach HerbsHere are some other planters that I planted lettuce, spinach, basil, thyme and two peppers.  I started these from seed as well.  My wife won a small green house at a work event raffle.  I am looking forward to having these at my disposal for cooking at home and work.

 

 

Here is a picture of Paul’s cousin Andy and our other friend Wyman playing bags/cornhole in the side of my yard.

Agridude - Cornhole