Welcome to NakedTomatoes

All about tomatoes, heirloom and home grown.
With a bit extra thrown in about Brugs and bread, growing and baking, and other semi-relevant thoughts. And maybe a few recipes.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Halloween!!!

What's that got to do with tomatoes? Absolutely Nothing!!! (Does anyone else have music running through their minds, when they write certain things done?) Ah, never mind.

Pumpkins are a pretty easy thing to grow. Especially accidental out-of-the-compost pumpkins. They thrive in a rich, moist soil, which the compost pile provides magnificently! No matter how inconvenient a spot that may be to have pumpkins growing, it is ideal! Which leads me to garden amendments, top dressing, and composting.

I've talked about compost and additions to the garden before, but I'll touch on it again, because this year I have a special offer for any one in the Aylmer/Ottawa area. Free horse manure!!! Now if you find this offer exciting, you are either a freak, or a gardener, or both. Welcome to the club! Please send me an email for further directions. This offer is open to anyone, large or small amounts, and did I mention, free??

One reason I've been so MIA around this blog is that my days are filled; with feeding, turning out, occasionally mucking out, and general horsey stuff. Even riding once in a while. And big animals like horses produce a lot of really great potential compost. I have yet to take advantage of this fact, but I'm planning to this weekend. We have a window of opportunity weather-wise, for a really good clean up outside, which should include top dressing and/or digging in amendments into the beds. With manure, you want to make sure you get the oldest, well-rotted stuff possible, fresh is too strong and will burn the roots. If you're digging it into a veggie bed that is empty, overwintering fresher stuff should be okay. The worms and other little buggies will do the job for you. If you are side dressing shrubs, trees or perennials, the older the better the manure.

You can't get much better than horse manure. Horses are fed purely hay and grain (and the occasional bunch of carrots), unlike what is considered 'food' for cows or pigs. And the use of antibiotics and such is purely medicinal, not an every day ocurrance as it is with many other farm animals. To my mind, other than possibly mushroom compost, this makes it the safest, purest, most 'organic' compost available. Now's the perfect time to dig in!!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

It's been forever....

I haven't been posting much lately, for a variety of reasons. It was a really busy summer, I never did get those blossoms bagged, and it was a terrible season production wise. Literally very few plants produced much of anything. I kind of lost hope there, and lost interest in posting much about the disastrous garden. I still managed to save a lot of seeds from the few that I did get, and I'm hoping next year will be better. I have access to all the horse manure a gardener could dream of and will be digging a lot of it in the beds this fall. Hopefully some good soil ammending will help the plants next summer. A late blight hit them, and pretty much ended the season for me. There was very little that could have been done to save them, with the weather that we had. I know I wasn't alone, looking at other gardens and talking to others, we all had a pretty crappy growing season.
What can you do? Make plans for next year!