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TOP 10 REASONS WHY GROWING TOMATOES ON TRELLIS NETTING IS FANTASTIC

TOP 10 REASONS WHY GROWING TOMATOES ON TRELLIS NETTING IS FANTASTIC

1.  Easy to install
2. Takes up less space
3.  Makes room for more plants so you can have a bigger harvest
4. More affordable then tomato cages
5. Very beautiful in your garden and Neater more organized looking
6. Easier to prune tomato plant
7. Easier to harvest and you don’t have to bend as much
8. The whole plant gets better sunlight and creates bigger tastier tomatoes
9. Gets your plants off of the ground, allowing for more circulation of air and avoiding foliage and fruit rotting due to excess moisture.
10. Easier to protect from pests

Green Tomato Chutney Recipe

I’m not by any means a gardener, but I do love my grandchildren and when they clamored to buy some seeds, I let them pick one packet each. Chloe the eldest picked a packet of mixed flowers, and I reckoned I could cope with them. But the youngest Bethany was going through one of those phases that children go through. She had taken to eating tomatoes, as if they were apples, she couldn’t get enough of them.

Yes, that’s Right. You’ve guessed it. She picked a packet of tomato seeds. Glory be, what was I to do now, as far as I was aware you needed a greenhouse in these northern climes, to grow tomatoes. I tried to talk her out of it, but she was having none of it.

‘You said I could pick my own seeds, Grandad,’ she cried.

‘Yes, but I don’t think you can grow them without a greenhouse.’ I said.

‘Why?’

‘Because, they don’t like the cold.’

‘But it’s not cold, Grandad, it’s nice and warm.’

‘I don’t mean just today, I mean in general.’

‘What’s in general?’

‘It means…em… it’s cold most days.’

‘That’s alright then, we’ll plant them today while it’s warm.’

I gave in then, thinking, we’ll plant the seeds today and she’ll eventually forget all about them.

I paid for the seeds, a pack of plant pots, a bag of compost, and lugged them home on the bus. After getting off the bus the girls ran ahead, leaving me to hump the compost and plant pots. Reaching the house and since my hands were full, I pushed the door open with my foot and was just in time to hear the little one say, ‘And, Grandma, Grandad’s coming with the pots and the compy stuff and we’re going to plant the seeds straight away.’

‘Hold it, hold it,’ I said as I staggered through the door, ‘before Grandad does anything, he’s going to have a nice cup of tea.’

‘Aw, Grandad,’ she said.

But she waited, after a fashion, humming a hawing, until I had a cup of tea, and then she dragged me out into the garden.

Opening the bag of compost I filled six pots for Chloe and let her plant her own flower seeds, then help Bethany with her tomato seeds. Now all we could do was wait.

The weather was mild so it should have been, since it was May and we were far too late for planting tomato seeds. Two weeks went by and the flowers started to show, but there was no sign of the tomatoes. Another two week went by and just when I’d given up. Bethany came racing indoors, all excited.

‘Come and look Grandad, they are growing.’

And sure enough the tomatoes were showing, but I didn’t hold out much hope for the crop. Anyway as soon as the plants were big enough I transplanted them into a couple of grow bags and they took off, like Jack’s magic beanstalk.

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It’s now the 30th of September, the plants are 5ft high, filled with tomatoes, and are still flowering. Bethany is over the moon and is looking forward to picking her first fruit, or should I say vegetable? But as we slide into October, no way on earth are they going to ripen and to save her disappointment I decided after consultation with the Grand Dame, my mother in-law, to turn them into chutney. See the recipe below. By the way, Chloe’s flowers bloomed, though they are nearly finished now.

Green Tomato Chutney.

Will make 5- 6lb.

Ingredients

4lb green tomatoes

1lb apples

1lb of onions

8oz of raisins

2lb of soft brown sugar

1/2oz of salt

1/2oz of root ginger

1oz of mustard seeds

11/2 pints of malt vinegar

Method

Cut up tomatoes, peel, core, and cut up apples, cut up onions and chop raisins.

Bruise ginger and tie in muslin bag.

Place all ingredients into pan, bring to boil and simmer until vinegar has been absorbed. (Approx 2 hours) At this point you should be able to draw a wooden spoon across the mixture and it will leave an impression.

Remove the bag of ginger, pour chutney into hot dry screw-top jars and place waxed discs on top of each one.

Cover jars with a clean cloth until cold.

Screw on lids (Make sure they are vinegar proof first) label and store in a cool cupboard.

Mmm, I can taste it now.

American Home Vegetable Gardening & the Tomato

A hundred years ago, almost every American family grew some of their own produce at home.  In rural America, farming families would grow almost all their vegetables, as well as raise livestock for their meat and dairy needs.

Today, with the advent of mass transportation and the growth of suburban America, there are fewer and fewer self-supporting family farms.  Many Americans living in urban or suburban areas do the majority of their grocery shopping at large commercial grocery stores.  However, home vegetable gardening has reemerged as a popular hobby for families.

Of all homegrown vegetables, the tomato is considered the most popular crop.  Many American families plant at least one tomato plant each year, either in their backyard or somewhere in the landscaping around their home.  What is the reason for the tomato plant’s widespread popularity?  It is an extremely easy plant to grow, thriving in almost all U.S. climate conditions and soil types.  Tomatoes will grow in almost any location that receives at least four hours of sunlight per day.  They do require regular watering for optimum fruit production, but will produce some fruit even in dry conditions.

Tomatoes are a fairly disease resistant crop, too, suffering only occasionally from leaf wilt and blight.  Good planting and pruning techniques can usually prevent these problems.  Tomato bugs, white flies, and cutworms can also pose threat to tomatoes, but these pests can usually be kept at bay with soap spray, cutworm collars placed at the bottom of the plant, or other commercially available pesticide sprays.

Because tomatoes are such a popular plant for home gardeners, they are usually readily available for purchase as young plants from local garden centers and discount stores during the early spring months of the year.  Plants found in stores will probably be of the more common varieties and hybrids such as Better Boy, Beefsteak, Sweet 100 (a cherry type tomato) and Early Girl.  Less common varieties may have to be purchased as seeds and grown “from scratch” by the gardener.  Growing plants from seed is certainly a more economical option than buying already established plants, and can be worthwhile, particularly when planting on a large scale.

Growing plants from seed is not difficult, and seed packets for many vegetables and herbs usually begin appearing on store shelves as early as January or February.  Starting plants from seed indoors is a good way to get a head start on the growing seasons, and can often result in bigger plants and larger harvests.  All you really need are pots full of soil and a warm, sunny location for them during the day.  For optimum seed starting conditions, you can also use a grow light or heat lamp.

Greenhouses can also be enormously helpful in starting plants from seed, because they create warmer growing climates for the plants than the surrounding air outside.  For the gardener with space restrictions, indoor tabletop green houses can be a good option, as they occupy no more space than a small table or workbench.  For the serious gardener with plenty of outdoor space, a larger outdoor greenhouse may be the better choice.  Greenhouse kits to help you build your own greenhouse are readily available through specialty catalogs and online stores.

Though home gardening isn’t what it used to be a century ago, it has adapted along with the American family and our growing and changing way of life.  Most families today obtain the vast majority of their food from grocery stores; however, the small suburban garden continues to thrive as a source of good food and a leisurely pastime for millions of American families today.

For more information on building a greenhouse, visit Home Products ‘n’ More. There you’ll find a variety of greenhouse kits and greenhouse supplies, all with free shipping!

Preventing Deer From Eating Your Tomato Plants

Not only do you wait for that great harvest of tomatoes but you may have deer waiting to share your harvest with you. When this is the case you will want to prevent these deer from eating not only your tomato plants but anything that is in your garden. You will not be successful in preventing that deer from coming into your garden and eating dinner unless you have the right products to stop them. There are several products on the market that may interest you with a variety of deer repellents and even deer fencing you will be able to shop and make the best choice in keeping deer out of your tomatoes and your garden.

When trying to keep the deer away from your property you want a safe and effective method to keep the deer away. You will be able to find a product that will not only keep the deer away from your garden but is safe and easy to use. There are many different sprays on the market that will allow you to create a safe zone for your garden. Spraying these products around the perimeter of your garden will keep the deer from having your tomatoes for dinner. When you are using spray products most are safe for humans, other animals, and plants so you will be able to keep your garden and family safe. These sprays are designed to scare the deer away through taste and smell. With bitter tastes and smells that tell the deer predator’s are near by the deer are sure to leave your garden alone.

There are also concentrate mixtures and granular products that can be just as safe and just as effective. You can find one that will allow you to keep the deer away yet let the dogs and children play safely on your property. Some of these products deter more than one animal from coming on your property so make sure the product you choose is exactly what you need. Another thing to be concerned about when you are choosing a product to keep the deer away is the amount of times you will have to reapply the product. This may cut into your time and your budget so checking the frequency of application is important to make sure you get the most effectiveness out of the product.

There are also fences available that will deter deer away from your garden. These fences can provide safe and effective protection against the deer entering your property or certain space. They are easy to use and can be a great benefit in also keeping out other large animals. You can see that you have many options when it comes to deterring deer away from your garden. Whether you need the protection of a fence or a liquid fence you can find what you are looking for. When you want to create a safe perimeter around your property you can with the variety of products that are available. When you find the right product for your deer problem you will be able to enjoy your harvest of tomatoes and vegetables without sharing.