TomatoHarvestI can’t grow tomatoes.

Well, let’s just say I’ve tried my hand at tomato-growing off and on since about 1997 but this may be the first year I can finally call myself a Real Tomato Grower. Persistence? Don’t ask! Stubbornness? Certainly. Slow on the uptake? Not out of the question.

To be fair, it’s not like I tried consistently in the intervening (gulp!) decade and a half. When we lived in California, I once took a stab at container tomatoes and between this, that and the other dumb thing, not one fruit emerged. It probably didn’t help that I took little notice of watering (in L.A.! it’s a desert!) or fertilizing or planting in containers of sufficient depth.

Skip ahead fifteen years and 3,000 miles east to a new home, a greater appreciation for the vagaries of plant maintenance and whoops! I did it again. Killed off a bunch of baby tomato plants faster than you can spell B-r-i-t-n-e-y.

Last year I finally decided to get serious about the science of Solanum lycopersicum L.  I mean, millions of home gardeners successfully raise bountiful crops of pasta toppers every season, so really, how tough could it be?

Let me count the ways. No, wait. It’s too dreary.  Let’s talk about this year instead:

Tomato Time!!!

Not sure whether I finally got the knack or maybe alien tomato experts took over my body but this summer we got so many love apples I even gave some away.

And, as you know, giving your produce away is the true hallmark of veggie gardening success–like with zucchini or something.

As if I could grow zucchini.



Copyright 2014, Lori Fontanes