Sunday, July 13, 2008

Survivor: The Tomato Tale Continues

When we last saw the half-flat of tomato plants, they were settling into their new homes scattered throughout the yard – except for a few that had migrated to my mother-in-law’s yard.

Within 48-hours of their starting to put down roots they were visited by the neighborhood welcome wagon – doe-a-deer and her twin fawns and numerous rabbits large and small.

The plants in the fenced garden and the patio plants remained untouched, but the four next to the pots were each left with a stalk sticking up and one pair of leaves. The three on the far side of the house had their tops cleanly clipped off.

Some welcome!

It appears that all the plants have survived their premature pruning.

Meanwhile I have noticed that friends’ plants are setting fruit already. In a state whose gardeners pride themselves on having the first red, ripe, edible, garden-grown Jersey tomato preferably by July 4th…well, this is not a good thing.

Trying to remain an incurable optimist, I will continue to read the all-tomato cookbook and will remain uncharacteristically silent when other gardeners brag about their tomatoes.

"...But deer sometimes do get a penchant for eating tomato plants, especially the new growth, and can cause extensive damage..." - Lawrence Davis-Hollander, "The Tomato Festival Cookbook", P. 48.

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