My last post about growing 35 different tomato varieties attracted some great comments which made me realize that many of you out there think I'm crazy. Chris actually called me nuts, but then he added that it was in a good way. Alan who is an actual farmer seemed to think I was being wasteful. He was very nice but in a normal way of thinking, he is right.
When it comes to tomatoes however, I don't think normally. I wanted to take a few moments here to explain my oddity. Tomato gardening is my playground. Not only do I love eating massive amounts of tomatoes, but I love growing them and trying crazy things with them. This year I have 5 fun tomato growing goals:
Let me explain these endeavours a bit more. The first one was simply growing a giant tomato. Last year two of my tomato fruits weighed in at almost 2 pounds.
I didn't do anything to promote this, but supposedly there are things you can do to help increase fruit size. You can allow each plant a lot of growing space and compost. You can pick off all but one or two fruits when they are small to put all of the plants energy into the remaining fruit (talk about wasteful - but fun). It also helps to grow varieties that have the ability to become large. Two of my selections from Baker Creek this year are for this purpose. "Delicious" produces 1 to 3 pound fruits. Someone once broke the world record with this variety by growing a 7 lb 12 oz. tomato! Another potential giant is "Omar's Lebanese", a pink pink tomato that promises 2 - 3 pound fruits.
#2 was to see how early I can harvest a ripe tomato. This is a game I've been playing for a couple of years now. I live in northern Kentucky, zone 6a, where main season tomatoes are harvested in late July/early August. In 2007 I got my first ripe tomato on June 15th. Last year, I put the plants outside earlier and added a makeshift greenhouse tent to protect them.
I would like to further explain the other 3 goals, but this post is getting a bit lengthy and it is getting pretty late. I will save it for my next post. Hopefully after explaining the fist two goals, you can better understand that I grow tomatoes for food, and for fun!
Do you still think I'm crazy?