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Growing Tomatoes


As This is the last newsletter for 2000 I wish You all the
Compliments of the Holiday Season and
a Very Happy and Prosperous 2001.

Although Tomatoes are actually a Fruit most people refer to them and
consider them as vegetables.

There are many Varieties of this very useful and vitamin C rich fruit.

a few of them that are well known are Beefsteak,Grosse Lisse,Mighty Red,
Appollo,Roma(egg shaped), and in Australia Bowen (long keeping but not
a lot of flavour), Ky1 (Grown mostly in the Goulburn Valley Victoria
for Sauce production).

There are also the "Cherry" Tomatoes such as Sweet 100.

Cultivation is Similar with the Main difference being wether they are
"Bush types (Appollo,Roma,Ky1 etc.) or Staking types.
(Grosse lisse,Sweet 100 etc).

I have had success with "Mighty Red"both as a bush or staked.

Plant in well prepared soil with plenty of Compost (Not Much Lime).
Allow plenty of room for Growth (at least 2 feet for Staked
and 2.5 feet for Bush Types).

I use 3 feet to allow for companion planting.

Tomatoes are not tolerant of Frost and care must be taken not to
plant out until the risk of frost has passed.

In frost Prone areas to get an earlier crop start the plants indoors
or in a greenhouse (or mini greenhouse made from clear plastic sheeting.

Where I live the risk of frost has not passed until the end of October
(Southern Hemisphere)Yet there are grosse lisse 4 feet high and
ready to pick the first ones in a couple of days.

The ones that were planted early November are about 1 foot high and
will not have ripe fruit until mid to late January.

With the "cherry" types the popular ones will produce 100 or more
of these little tomatoes from one plant over the season.
(dont plant too many unless You have an outlet for them).

I usually only plant 1 or 2 "Beefsteak" as one tomato is enough for
2 or 3 people(half pound or more each one).

A word of caution with Beefsteak-they can grow ten to twelve feet high.
The tops can be pinched off when they reach the height You can
comfortably reach or You can be espailia them.

Make sure that tomatoes are well watered for a good continuing crop.
(Stress also makes them prone to diseases and insect attack.)

Another popular method of supporting the staking types is a circle of
wire mesh such as concrete reinforcing or fencing mesh.Plastic
garden mesh is not reccommended because of the weight of a healty
high yeilding tomato plant.(make sure the mesh size is large
enough to get Your hand and arm through easily to pick the crop).
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Companion herbs



Basil is said to improve the flavour of Tomatoes also a good
      herb eaten with tomatos.

Borage deters Tomato Hornworm.

English Marigold (Calendula) is said to deter White Fly.

French Marigold (Tagettes) are also used to deter White Fly.

Nasturtiums planted as a surrounding barrier deter many bugs.
            also the flowers leaves and seeds are all edible and
            are used mostly in salads.

Parsley planted among the tomatoes attracts Hover flies and if let
        go to seed attracts parasitic wasps.

Happy Gardening,
PS If You Have a Question about organic Gardening E-mail me.

Copyright 2000

edcrain @ edcrain.net

webmaster @ edcrain.net



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