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Saturday, June 4, 2011

Tomatoes everywhere....uuuh, maybe?


On Thursday, 104 degrees and 65% humidity...a rain forest?

My friend from NY, who lives in Alabama, recounted the story of his tomato plants that failed. Or thrived, actually.

His Italian father told him to take cookie sheets and lay wet paper towel on the cookie sheets. Next, place one seed about every one inch in both directions, so you have a grid of seeds. Wet another paper towel and place over the seeds.

Heat the oven to 350 degrees. When it reaches that temp, turn it off. Place the cookie sheets in the oven and leave overnight.

Cut the paper towel in tiny squares with one seed to each square. Place the little squares with seeds into the peat pots that go right into the ground. The pot should be filled halfway with soil before planting the square with the seed, then cover the seed and water. In two weeks there should be tomato seeds germinating. That is what his father said.

My friend did all this and waited and waited and waited. He called his father who told him to be patient. Finally, he threw pots, seeds, dirt and all into his garden area. My friend was annoyed that the plan failed.

He went back out to till a few weeks later.  When he looked in the garden a few weeks after tilling, he was shocked to find tomato seedlings all over the place. The tiller had spread them all over the garden, little tiny seedlings. He pulled them up and flung them out into the yard in all directions up and down the perimeter of the garden. Still later.....Yes, soon the tomatoes sprung up all over the yard.

Once again, he treated the seedlings shabbily, flinging all the tiny plants up against the fence line, trying to rid himself of the nuisances.

Eventually, these once again thrived. Tomato plants grew all along his fence. He had about 24 bushels of tomatoes. The neighbors finally refused to take more tomatoes for canning or eating. He lives in the city, so it is not like he lives where people plant an acre of tomatoes.

I laughed so hard at this tale of trying to kill tomato plants. How many of us are worried about tomatoes not germinating/growing/thriving under adverse conditions? Who gets angry when they germinate and grow?

He also told me his neighbor in NY planted his spring crop of tomatoes every fall by throwing tomatoes against the side of the garage as he watched them burst and slide down the side of the garage. In the spring, he had tomato plants.

Both stories are hilarious and bizarre to me. Really, he tells the story better than I, expressing surprise, dismay, and disgust.

Your turn
Have you been faced with tomatoes that thrived no matter what? Got a funny tomato planting story? Got a bizarre method of planting?


  1. We've got tomato plants growing in our compost pile, but we're not actually getting any fruit. I think it's too hot.

  2. I don't have any fun stories, but I can say the photo looks yummy! I love a good snack of tomatoes with a little salt sprinkled on them (not healthy I know), but so good!

  3. nicoleandmaggie, I hope I have two tomato plants growing in my compost box/garden box.

    tlc,the photo was taken at the produce market. When I was about 11 or 12, I decided to quit putting salt on lots of my food. I just decided it was all too salty, and I like the taste of raw fruits and vegetables without salt. I suppose my uninformed decision has rewarded me with almost too-low blood pressure. I would cry if anyone salted my tomatoes...silly, but you get to choose. Maybe you don't need to curtail salt on everything.

  4. I HATE my love of salt. I have gotten better with my use of it, but certain things just simply don't taste the same without it (at least to me), i.e. popcorn and fries. My blood pressure is good right now, but high BP does run in the family, so I need to keep it in check.

  5. tlc, Only on French fries and potato chips, both of which I avoid, do I demand lots of salt. High BP does not run in my family. Neither does low Bp, which I have! I actually prefer popcorn without salt. My family salted tomatoes, apples, watermelon, and grapefruit. I just decided when I was a child that I liked the clean taste of the fresh, raw food with no salt. My parents and siblings continued to salt these foods.

  6. I'm tempted to do the " throw at the garage" technique:)

  7. Yes, I agree that is tempting.


Okay, hoping the annoyances have gone away.