This weather this year has been lousy for gardening. Through some strange fluke, and a lot of work, ours has flourished. We have as much basil as we want and the tomato vines are trying to take over the yard. Of our three tomato plants, we have only harvested off the cherry tomato vine, but they are the epitome of summer tomatoes – full of tomato flavor, sweet and tasting of summer. We are hoping the other green tomatoes on the Early Girl and the Rutgers vines will ripen some day. When they do, we will be inundated.
If you aren’t a gardener, let me give you the lowdown – tomatoes like it hot, but not too hot. And they like just enough moisture. Too much and they can get blossom end rot on the fruit, which is exactly what it sounds like. Too little and they conserve their energies and stop blooming and producing.
Here in St. Louis we have had a scorcher of a summer so far, and we are only half through it. We don’t usually get 100-degree days until August, but we have had our fair share of them already. All without a drop of rain. Well, maybe a few drops, but not many. Not nearly enough. The grass is dying. The trees are struggling. And forget about flower gardens unless you water often and try to shield them from the relentless sun.
Our little cherry tomato vine just keeps plugging along, though. I say little, but if you stretched it out it would be over seven feet tall. And it is full of tomatoes in every stage of ripeness from green to a hint of blush to orange to red. Keep going little tomato!
Do you garden? What fruit or vegetable to you look forward to every summer?