Tuesday, July 6, 2010

The Jersey Tomato

It is an institution. The Jersey Tomato. If you have a garden, you have a tomato plant. That's just the way it is.
My family barely even eats tomatoes, but it doesn't matter. I've decided to do a pretty big garden this summer - especially since I've been laid off, and I figured I'd have time to take care of it. And tomatoes are pretty dependable, so I've planted lots of them. We won't be eating them in salads, much, but we will eat an occasional Bacon Lettuce and Tomato sandwich. And obviously we eat tomato sauce on our spaghetti, so I'm going to make a lot of sauce to freeze. Assuming the things ever ripen.

I bought heirloom seeds for my tomatoes this year. An heirloom seed is an old fashioned, antique variety of a plant. The seeds are passed down from year to year, and saved by the gardener. This is not a manufactured, genetically modified hybrid. This is old school. And my plan is to save the seeds from a few of the tomatoes at the end of the year, and save them to plant again next year. Well... that's the PLAN. We'll see if I follow through or not.

According to the description on the seed package, the tomatoes that I picked out are "heavy producers of 4 to 5 ounce, red, globe shaped tomatoes... Does well under humid conditions...." And best of all is the name of the tomato; it's what really sold me. It's called the "moneymaker" tomato. When I was buying those seeds, the description was great; but anticipating being laid off, a moneymaker was what I needed, and so that is what I bought.

I bought seeds. I had the husband create a nice sunny garden location, and we added dirt. And I started the seeds in the special seed-starting potting soil that I bought at Home Depot. And I go out in the garden every other day or so and water it.

And I've got to wonder. How many tomatoes do I have to harvest to make up for all the money that I'm spending on this garden in the first place?

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