My container garden has grown by 100% this year! Okay, I went from four pots to eight pots but that is still 100% in the eyes of the law.
Last year, I had mixed success with my four tomato plants. Two were smaller cherry or grape varieties that my daughter basically ate straight off the vine. Every afternoon she would make the trek to the patio with a bowl in hand to pick tomatoes and not even make it to the kitchen to wash them off choosing instead the bathroom sink in the basement. She would not want to waste the time to climb a set of stairs. I would consider that a success.
The larger varieties just did not put out much fruit. I know that part of the problem was a pretty nasty windstorm that damaged lots of garden plants in the neighborhood. I also know that I did a pretty poor job of supporting and trimming the plants for maximum production.
The container garden looks like this:
This year I am trying out San Marzano tomatoes instead of Romas. According to the foodies, San Marzano tomatoes make the best sauce. In addition, two cherry tomato plants and two bell pepper plants complete the salsa/sauce garden. To the left are pots containing basil, for tomato sauce and pesto, and cilantro, which my wife adores. I just hope she gets enough off the plants before they go to seed and become coriander.
My goal last year, this year, and for the next couple is to experiment with some different varieties of tomatoes, peppers, and herbs to figure out my favorites before tilling under a large section of my yard for a full blown garden. That garden will have some perennial plants, most likely a bed for asparagus, and plants that require more soil depth than a container can provide, like carrots and onions. I would also like to grow some uncommon beans just to be different. And sunflowers…
The catalog from Seed Savers Exchange is almost like garden porn.
Another gardening project for this fall is to establish a bed for garlic because there is nothing better than locally grown garlic that you cure yourself. Plus, you get to enjoy eating garlic scapes early in the season. Some people get excited for ramps, but I get excited for scapes.