The diary of two novice gardeners and allotmenteers

Chris and Steve's Weblog – City Chickens

Tag Archive: Tomatoes

Tomato Tumbler F1 – Ildie, Roma and Aubergine Mohican

I have sown a tray of Tomatoes and Aubergines to replace my lost seedlings. The last of the Aubergine Mohican, some fresh seeds of Tomato Ildie, Tomato Tumbler and some old Roma seeds.

Tomato Tumbler F1 is a vigorous, trailing British-bred tomato ideal for hanging baskets and containers. One plant can produce up to 9 lbs of cherry-sized fruit in a single season. Grow one plant in a 14″ hanging basket. This is a bush variety and is very easy to grow as trusses do not require support and fruits without side shoots being removed.

The Roma Tomato is a plum variety that I have grown before and is good for cooking. Ildie is a tried and tested old favourite producing lots of grape sized fruit.

Tomatoes

I sowed the first Tomato seeds today, 2nd Feb, a little early but last years didn’t seem to have enough time to mature fully. I have sown four Gardeners Delight, two Black Opal, two Alicante, four Black Russian, four Tigerella and four Ildie. I have sown two to a module. Germination should be 1-2 weeks. Update – All of the seeds germinated at seven days and today, 13th Feb,  I have potted them on.

Tomatoes are packed with antioxidants and are rich in Vitamins A and C and lycopene, all helping to stimulate your body’s immune system.

Gardeners Delight from T&M – This variety has truly tangy flavour. This cordon has long been a favourite for its trusses of bite-sized cherry tomatoes.

Black Opal F1 Hybrid from T&M – I bought these new in 2016, the dark fruits of Black Opal are tasty Cherry tomatoes. This unique cross combines the dark skin and health benefits of Black Cherry with the high sugar content of Sweet Aperitif whilst retaining high levels of anthocyanins and lycopene.

Alicante from Alan Romans – This vigorous cordon Alicante is open pollinated and will grow true from saved seed. A typical traditional tomato.

Black Russian from Seekay – This is a medium tomato with dark skin that has a superb flavour. The fruits darken with age to almost dark brown when fully ripe.

Tigerella from Seekay – This Indeterminate tomato produces a tangy flavoured crop of early ripening fruit that have yellow stripes.

Ildie from Seekay – A large bush type tomato that grows 5′ – 6′ high producing trusses of gorgeous yellow grape sized tomatoes.

Seeds of Hope

Eleven packets of seed arrived today and they look very healthy so I am optimistic about growing some productive plants. I have used a company that is new to me. It is called Seekay and is trading on Amazon. Cost and delivery has been good. Seeds arrived packed well and in individual sealed polythene packets. I will report on success and failure but will allow for grower error.

Tomato Ildie – I grew this tomato back in the day. It is mentioned on the old blog posts. I used up the last of my old seeds last year so have bought new for the coming season. I received 20 seeds at a cost of 65p. Sweetcorn F1 Wagtail – This is a new variety for me. It is listed as super sweet and at 99p for 32 seeds the price is sweet too. Climbing French Bean Blue Lake – 90 seeds for 65p. When I was able to go back to the allotment at the end of last season I was given a bag full of this prolific bean by our plot neighbour. I was very impressed and determined to grow them myself this year. Imagine my surprise when reading back over old blog posts to see that I had actually grown these before. This demonstrates to me how ones mind can be completely taken over when it is coping with a personal tragedy. New priorities move in and dominate our thinking. Parsnip Guernsey – 100 seeds for 55p. Another new variety to me. The Guernsey variety was the most popular parsnip of the 19th century. Introduced prior to the 1850’s, this variety is medium-long, and has thick shoulders and smooth white skin. The flesh gets even sweeter after a good frost in autumn. It’s not as long as the Hollow Crown and has a sweet and delicate flavour.  Information from Baker Creek.

 

 

 

 

 

Rain – Courgette and Squash

After weeks of dry weather the rain came with a vengance last night accompanied by thunder and lightening. It is still raining steadily today but a nice fine rain that is ok to work in.

I have put the flower seedlings into their final bed now and they look happy and will bed in nicely if this fine rain continues. They are Nasturtium, Lupin and Campion. I have also filled an oblong planter with Nasturtium and placed it alongside the rose bed. They will attract Hover Flies which in turn should keep my roses free from green fly.

I have potted on the biggest of the tomatoes now. Four are in place at the allotment in the lean to and the other six are at home in the garden. Today I have sown nine Butternut Squash seeds saved from last year. They look a bit feeble though so if they don’t show through I shall have to buy some fresh seeds. The two courgette plants seem to be doing well and I have put them outside to harden off a bit. The four Cucumber plants are still on the window ledge and look very frail. They are the long white bought last year from T&M. I don’t hold out much hope for them.

Growing Update – Seeds and Seedlings

The Lupin seeds have germinated and are already forming true leaves. I have sown seeds of dwarf Nasturtium both a mixed packet and some with variegated leaves and deep red flowers. I have had a go with some dwarf Scabiosa seeds in modules. These are not easy to germinate in my experience so fingers crossed. The other flower seeds I have sown are Honesty, a few collected seeds from my sister.
I bought some bulbs from the pound shop. They are a white Anemone and out of twenty bulbs I have five decent plants which is not bad for a pound after all.
13th April – I have potted on most of my tomato seedlings. I have Black Cherry, Money-maker and Yellow Plum.
I have sown seeds of Beetroot Boltardy in modules today and covered them with Clingfilm. I have also sown runner beans Blue Lake, Black Bean Delinel and Kelvedon Stringless in pots. The White Lady will be sown direct. Down at the allotment all the potatoes are now in. They are Sharps Express, Vivaldi and Rocket. We have put most in bags but some in the ground. The peas and the broad beans are now in their permanent beds at the allotment and one on the new rhubarb crowns has been planted.

Exploding Seed Heads

Today was another lovely day. A bit of grey cloud but warm enough for my first proper visit to the allotment. We did a lot of tidying up and digging over of beds. I brought back some bags of seed heads that had been left over the Winter to dry out. I have already put some Sweet Pea seeds to chit. They are a few Zorija Rose and some Pip Tremewan left over from last year. I brought home loads of Sweet Pea seeds but they will be mixed. I also brought home Lupin seeds but think that they have gone off. Time will tell. I will sow them and see what happens. The other seed heads were hard and round and I think they must be from the Alstromeria. I don’t usually let them go to seed but pull them when they have gone over. The seed heads, if left, will explode and shoot their seed everywhere which is why the flower bed is always full of new shoots.

The Rhubarb plant is growing well even though we still have straw around it to protect from frost. I have bought two new crowns of Champagne Red and they look ready to put into the ground soon. We stayed for two and a half hours today and there are still loads of jobs to do. At home I have chitted some Hurst Green Shaft Peas and sowed them in trays ready to get a good start. I also have Broad Bean Witkiem Manita coming along in toilet roll tubes. I have sown the first four Tomato seeds, Black Cherry, bought fresh this year from T&M.

Rain at Last

I woke up this morning to the sound of rain. We have had a couple of weeks without a drop  and have enjoyed rising temperatures and sunshine which have been welcome after the coldest Winter in a decade. Ideally I would want light rain overnight every night followed by dry sunny days but unfortunately nature isn’t controlled by a switch so we have to deal with what we get and in this country we are blessed with mild, changeable weather. However the sound of rain this morning was welcome. The garden and the allotment plot were dry and dusty which is not great for new plants and seedlings or the newly seeded lawn at home. We spent a couple of hours this morning at home in the garden then popped to the plots for an hour. The rain kept off and the hour turned into four hours. We sowed more seeds of Parsnip Hollow Crown and Carrot Nantes into the bottom bed. There was great excitement when we saw two asparagus spears peeping through already.

Rob put in some Peas Kelvedon Wonder in the bottom brassica tunnel. I had been swishing them for a few days and they were already germinated so should be off to a good start.  The Hurst Green Shaft that I put in the top tunnel are well up now and the Meteor are showing through too. Rob has moved the obelisk that I grow the Sweet Peas up and I have planted the Spencer Mixed raised from seed at home. They are now situated at the bottom of the plot by the seating area.We came home with another bunch of Raddish French Breakfast, my favourite. I shall have to sow more next time we go down. At home I have pricked out the Gardeners Delight seedlings and potted on some Alicante and Black Cherry.

First Six Tomato Seeds Sown

Today I have sown one seed each of Tomato Ildi, Lemon Tree, Snow White, Moneymaker, Tigerella and Black Cherry. They are each in a 3″ pot in John Innes seed compost and for the moment are sitting on the computer box. Germination should take seven to ten days if kept at a temperature of 18-21c. Tip – It is a good idea to provide some sort of covering over your germination containers to preserve moisture. You can place the container in a plastic bag or cover it with a sheet of plastic. Allow for some air to circulate but don’t let the mix dry out. Dry seeds will not germinate.

Tomato Black Cherry

tomato black cherryI have sown seeds of Tomato Black Cherry again this year.  We have done well with these in the past couple of years and hope that the seeds will do us proud again this year. I should have bought fresh seeds I suppose but I thought I might as well give them a go to see of they germinate. If not I will buy more because they are well worth growing

Indeterminate. This purple skinned, cherry tomato with dark red flesh and a sweet and juicy flavour fruits in abundance throughout the summer. Ideal for greenhouse growing, or outdoors in a sunny spot.