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Have you ordered any seeds yet?
Old 01-27-2016, 08:04 PM   #1
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Have you ordered any seeds yet?

Since I start my tomatoes as seeds under lights early I ordered a bunch of varieties yesterday. I shopped around and bought from fedco which seemed to be the best deal. I have a small greenhouse I am going to do 2 plants super early using a 100 watt bulb. April has been very iffy the last few years cold and rainy. I must admit to a craving for SUN GOLD Tomatoes. Have you ever had one of those orange sun touched sweet orange quarter sized gifts from God? (Yeah I love them). My main crop will be in big pots in front of the house; the wife loves them too she walks by picks a few and pops them into her mouth. The scream summertime. There will be cherry and grape tomatoes as well and a couple slicers ... Can any say caprese salad?


I am also nuts for lettuce - easy to grow and great on the plate. When the wife saw the fedco order she said "remember your knee - you'll need to downsize the garden". I have other plans.

New Yukon gold potatoes lightly fried in butter with eggs... Sweet Moses!

Tomatoes anyone have a favorite?


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Old 01-27-2016, 08:19 PM   #2
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I like big boys or beefsteak. I usually get small plants cheap at home repot. No seeds.
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Old 01-27-2016, 08:28 PM   #3
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I have not had good results with my tomatoes since moving to this house. Last year I couldn't find my favorite hybrid in the nurseries, so I just planted home-started heirlooms and had a complete failure. When I pulled up the failures, I realized that I have root knot nematodes. Sob.

My favorite hybrid, Big Beef, is resistant which is why it did okay the previous year. I've bought a bunch of nematode resistant varieties to try for this year. If that doesn't work, I'll have to try grow boxes.

Since I live in San Diego, I get to start seed next week ... and again in June.
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Old 01-27-2016, 09:03 PM   #4
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This past year because the weather was so mild, I bought 2 1 gallon plants. An Early Girl and a Celebrity and put them in in mid February. it is almost a year later, and the plants grew to 7 feet high and 4 feet around. I am still getting tomatoes off them.
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Old 01-28-2016, 04:18 AM   #5
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This past year because the weather was so mild, I bought 2 1 gallon plants. An Early Girl and a Celebrity and put them in in mid February. it is almost a year later, and the plants grew to 7 feet high and 4 feet around. I am still getting tomatoes off them.

Where do you live? Tomato heaven?


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Old 01-28-2016, 09:06 AM   #6
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Where do you live? Tomato heaven?


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Santa Clarita River Valley,Ventura County, but 10 miles inland
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Old 01-28-2016, 09:27 AM   #7
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Not much into tomatoes, but did have a nice grape variety plant last year that was quite prolific. Do well with the potatoes, lettuce and squash.

However, the other day noticed that voles have moved into my backyard next to the garden. I need to get them out before I plant anything. Yesterday when it warmed up there was one sunning himself in the yard. Yikes!
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Old 01-28-2016, 09:39 AM   #8
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I pored over the Park Seed catalog when it arrived a few weeks ago. Alas, my appetite for seeds is outweighed by the reality of my hatred for weeding in July. I try to remember that, and only order a few plants from the local Lowe's to plant after our frost date in mid March. But MAN, do I love looking through the catalog!
I used to start a lot of seeds and had a huge garden. When we moved out to the country, I found that there's not a perfect place for gardening, and the deer are a huge problem. Plus I got lazier, so there's that.
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Old 01-28-2016, 10:53 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by Sarah in SC View Post
I pored over the Park Seed catalog when it arrived a few weeks ago. Alas, my appetite for seeds is outweighed by the reality of my hatred for weeding in July. I try to remember that, and only order a few plants from the local Lowe's to plant after our frost date in mid March. But MAN, do I love looking through the catalog!
I used to start a lot of seeds and had a huge garden. When we moved out to the country, I found that there's not a perfect place for gardening, and the deer are a huge problem. Plus I got lazier, so there's that.
Yeah, that thing about weeds...

We've used the upside down hanging tomato planters (just outside the back door on the deck) with some limited success, maintaining reasonable soil moisture is challenging with variability due to rainfall and hot sunny days. Big Boy tomatoes have great flavor, even if the shape doesn't lend itself to nice neat slices for BLTs. Yum! Darn thing with tomatoes is having a feast or famine harvest in the shorter northern growing season. But we've gone to dehydrating slices and storing them for off-season use - can you say fantastic! Way better than buying the beautiful appearing but flavorless red blobs in the grocery store.

I had some great results with Yukon gold spuds in the garden several years ago, but messed up the soil with lime application and have been trying to get that back to what the spuds need. Got close last year, maybe this year will be good again. Reminds me, I need to take the tractor over to the neighbor's farm and grab a bucket or two of the sweet stuff on barn cleaning day.

Also planning to plant another dozen or so apple trees this year, they are way better than any food plot for attracting deer.
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Old 01-28-2016, 11:04 AM   #10
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Yes, I ordered my seeds in early January (also from FEDCO.....love their catalog and their prices), so I have them in hand already. I don't start too many tomatoes from seed anymore, because the local garden center has a good selection of varieties in the 4-packs of small plants. I also love lettuce and all greens, and order many different varieties of those (Red Russian and Dinosaur kale are favorites). I usually plant the old standard Kennebec White potato (hard to beat), and also Norland Red potato. Broccoli is a favorite of ours, so we generally buy 3-4 different varieties of broccoli (Pac Man seems to always do well for us). We also plant plenty of beets and carrot seeds (the golden beet....Touchstone....is really good). We also plant two varieties of garlic (put that in the garden last November, under mulch), shallots, two kinds of onions, and a few other things. Horseradish root will be an experiment this year.

I love my vegetable garden and always eagerly anticipate spring weather so I can get out there and prepare the soil, and start getting things in the ground......
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Old 01-28-2016, 11:49 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by Sarah in SC View Post
.. Alas, my appetite for seeds is outweighed by the reality of my hatred for weeding in July. .....When we moved out to the country, I found that there's not a perfect place for gardening, and the deer are a huge problem. Plus I got lazier, so there's that.
I have noticed over the past many years, that I also have gotten lazier.

I do love the wonderful full flavor of garden tomatoes, so I always plant 6-12 plants along with other stuff.
Carrots in the home garden are also much more flavorful.

I have tried to make it easier on myself:
  • I got a roto-tiller to prep the ground, so much better than digging.
  • I put newspaper/brown cardboard/patio stones between the rows to make a nice path and no weeds grow up.
  • I do buy my plants as I've had no luck with seeds inside.
  • I put up a green plastic fence to keep out critters.
  • Finally I started planting squash as that grows so well you don't even need to weed.
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Old 01-28-2016, 11:56 AM   #12
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Sweet millions (not to be confused with sweet hundreds) are our favorite. We grow them every year. Six plants feeds us, the kids, and grandkids all summer long.
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Old 01-30-2016, 11:38 AM   #13
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Still have plenty of seeds left over from previous years. Most of them germinate too! Radish, mustard spinach, string beans, watermelon, cantaloupe, cucumber. Only problem crop is string beans, since the darn rabbits bite them off as soon as they sprout. I have to start them in planters, on a table away from the rabbits, and then transplant to the garden. The rabbits don't eat them once they are a few weeks old. Too bitter I guess! I get my tomatoes at Home Depot or Lowe's, but no sales there last year. So I got some great tomato plants at my local ethnic grocery store for $1 each!! They were BigBoy or BetterBoy or something like that. Turned out great. Something was eating the lower tomatoes, but the middle and upper ones were untouched. I put a ton of Fall leaves into the garden each Fall for carbon. Also bury a lot of table scraps in it off and on all year. Been working out well for the last few years.
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Old 01-30-2016, 02:07 PM   #14
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My favorite tomato varietal of the ones I've started from seed in recent years is Carbon, which is an heirloom "black" tomato, medium sized. The ones I grew in 2014 were absolutely mouth-watering. I ordered them from TradeWindsFruit.com, which has a huge selection of heirloom and specialty tomatoes and peppers. I'll definitely be growing a few Carbons this year, along with some orange and red types. I also grow different kinds of hot and sweet peppers (mostly from seed). Some of the super-hots I've grown have really lived up to their billing. Anyone ever grown the Carolina Reaper, world's hottest pepper?
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Old 01-30-2016, 02:50 PM   #15
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I've always liked MoonGlow from Seed Saver's.

It's a yellow heirloom that is really tasty, although it hasn't been the most productive for me. It's my favorite BLT tomato.
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Old 01-30-2016, 11:35 PM   #16
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Carbon is the best! It has been superproductive for me in the past, but failed last year due to my nematode problem. I did find one place that sells grafted Carbon on a nematode resistant rootstock, but I'm going to try nematode resistant varieties this year.
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Old 01-31-2016, 11:05 PM   #17
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I have had excellent success with seed-starting indoors using a 2-tier grow-light compact plant stand and a 10 watt electric warming mat under the seedlings. I like growing tomatoes, especially the beefsteak varieties like Brandywines. I always plant a Sungold for my cherry tomato loving DH. Using a half-strength seedling liquid fertilizer when the true leaves begin showing, my tomato seedlings are ready to go in the ground in an amazing 3 weeks. I usually place a red early season plant protector around each tomato plant in March and remove the protectors in mid-April. I have one of the earliest beefsteak tomato harvests in my neighborhood.

In addition to the tomato seeds, I also sprout green and yellow zucchini, bell peppers, serrano peppers, and eggplants. Basil and thyme go into pots near the kitchen.
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