Chris's Weblog – City Chickens

Daily Archive: February 2, 2017

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.

Aubergine Mohican – 2017

I bought these seeds, Aubergine Mohican, F1 Solanum Melongena, in 2007. Ten year old seeds won’t stand much chance of germination in my opinion but I feel that I have to give them a go. Mohican look more like an egg than any other egg plant that I have seen. I tipped a few on to my hand, eleven, and have put them into a pint pot of moist compost and sealed them in a polythene bag. Watch this space!!! I have tried to grow these strange plants many times over my gardening years with mixed success and there are several mentions on old blog posts. If I remember rightly they need heat to germinate so I have put the pot next to the radiator.  My old note to myself way back was treat these seeds the same as Tomato. The first time that I ever sowed these they germinated after two days so my disappointment may arrive swiftly.

History – Native to India, this member of the lethal, deadly nightshade family is kin to tomatoes, peppers and potatoes. It was brought to Spain by the Moors more than 1,300 years ago. Botanists in 16th century Europe called eggplant mad apple because some believed it made people insane. In medieval Europe it was considered useful as a love potion. There is a subtle connection there I think.