Thursday, 28 April 2011

2011 Tomato Review

Overall, the best Tomato harvest for some years!

The varieties of Tomatoes I grew this year were:
  • Black Russian: yield 275g (2plants)
  • *Golden Sunrise: yield 5359g (2plants)
  • Green Zebra: yield 138g (2plants)
  • Tommy Toe Yellow: yield 266g (2plants)
  • *Kotlas: yield 12976g (4plants)
  • Red Oxheart: yield 529g (3plants)
  • Red Cherry: yield 573g (3plants)
  • Ida Gold: eaten outside without weighing (3plants)
  • *Silvery Fir Tree: yield 8812g (3plants)
*Best Yield

Oxhearts planted 14 Oct 2010
Were planted in a shallow wicking bed next to the chookrun fence
No pruning but tied to wire of fence
This wicking bed needs rebuilding the growing area is much too shallow
The wire moved in strong winds this weakened the plants roots
50% white shadecloth overhead but the 70% shadecloth on the eastern side of (supporting) fence meant no direct sun reached the tomatoes at all
End of season:
They grew slowly and only started to set small fruit in mid January
Were removed in April to allow the wicking bed to be re-built.

Red Cherry planted 14 Oct 2010
Grew up an old trellis on the eastern side of the house
Had little pruning but were tied to the trellis
Were not grown in a wicking bed but were on drippers
Received morning sun for only 2-3 hours
70% shadecloth directly above
End of season:
Have produced an adequate crop, still producing (end April)
Intend giving some extra TLC (pruning and feeding) to prolong harvest

Red Cherry Tomatoes suffered minor sunburn

Golden Sunrise planted 14 Oct 2010
Planted in bed 6 Main Veg Garden - new wicking bed.
Grew within a wire cage 2 metres tall, placed as wicking bed filled
No pruning or tying for more details go HERE
Holes in wire cage were large enough for hands to reach in for harvest
Hose was attached to top of wire when shadecloth added
The tops of plants pinched were out as they neared the top of cage
Suffered minor burning to leaves from hot wire during extreme heat

End of season:
Growth has been excellent with little work or extra feeding.
Still producing until mid April

Kotlas and Silvery Fir Tree
planted 24 Oct 2010
Planted in old chook run in a new wicking bed
Minimal pruning or tying
Weldmesh** (1 metre high) placed in centre of bed when plants were young
Plants trained to this by weaving shoots through (Kotlas)
Outgrew mesh but were not damaged by this
50% white shadecloth thrown over on sunny days and loosely attached
Both varieties produced well
End of season:
Growth was good with little attention and no extra feeding.
Kotlas still producing fruit (end April)

Green Zebra, Black Russian and Tommy Toe Yellow
planted 23 Nov 2010
Planted in bed 5 wicking bed in Main Veg Garden
Weldmesh** support added for climbing - only 1 metre high
No pruning but tied to mesh support (this was needed)
50% shade cloth over bed
Tommy Toe developed yellowing leaves and did not produce well
Green Zebra and Black Russian put on moderate leaf growth at the expense of fruit
End of season:
Produced a small harvest until March when they were removed to make room for brassica planting.
Should have been better controlled - on higher support with regular pruning and tying - my bad redfaceredfaceredface

Ida Gold
Where planted in Tank Bed f (non wicking)
Grew slowly
Produced an adequate crop for grazing/nibbling while gardening or while feeding the chooks!
End of season:
Were removed during March to allow Kale to be planted.

Our favourite eat of the bush tomato this year was
Golden Sunrise
! mrgreenmrgreenmrgreen

Further Reading:
A review of the South Australian tomato growing year from ABC (radio) Adelaide Saturday Talkback Gardening.

To see how the various Garden areas fit on our half acre block check out the newest Map of our place HERE

For a detailed look at the Tomato Support
**Weldmesh is used to reinforce concrete, available in sheets and cut using bolt cutters.

Wednesday, 13 April 2011

Garden Journal Notes: March 2011

The Broad Beans that have been planted early for green manure
(see here) have grown rapidly this month.

Temperatures this month:
Lowest Min 7C
Highest Min 22C
Lowest Max 14.4C
Highest Max 32C
49.8mm Rain

Temperatures were much cooler in the second half of the month from 30.5C on the 15th. Overnight temperatures remain mild, mostly in the mid teens (C).
The Autumn Equinox (equal day and night length) occurred on the 21st after which the winds picked up in strength for a while.
Sadly the "Super" Full Moon on the 20th was hidden from view by heavy cloud.

Rain comparison with other years:
2011 49.8mm
2010 7mm
2009 13mm
2008 23mm
2007 21.7mm

See this post and this one for full list.

See Totals Here
Listing Here

March in Previous Years:

I am so busy at the moment that I have given my Community Garden plot/bed to a newcomer. I will still be involved with community plots and garden beds but my own garden is keeping me occupied for now.

Sunday, 10 April 2011

March Harvest

Golden Sunrise 150g
Green Zebra 486g
Kotlas 1233g
Red Cherry 500g
Red Oxheart 529g
Tommy Toe Gold 785g

Potato Cranberry Red 1567g
Potato Bintji 137g

Zucchini Cocozelle 9526g
Zucchini Unnamed 707g

Basil Purple 250g
Basil Sweet 300g
Beetroot Forono 120g
Capsicum California Wonder 25g
Kohlrabi Purple Vienna 250g
Watermelon Sugarbaby 635g

Fruit trees/vines:
Apple Cox's Orange Pippin 6297g
Apple Jonathon 500g
Grapes Black Sultana 7242g
Nashi 737g
Pear William 797g
Plums 5063g

Vegetables 17.2kgs
Fruit 20.6kgs
Eggs 81

See monthly Totals Here

Saturday, 9 April 2011

March Propagation continued....

...16th-31st March 2011

Turnip Snowball Brassica rapa The Lost Seed direct sown-Wicking Tank c
Onion Domenica Sweet Allium cepa Southern Harvest early direct sowing-Wicking bed 2

Planting Out:
Celeriac White Alabaster seedlings-Wicking Bed 3 **
Celery American Stringless seedlings-Wicking Bed 3 **
Celery Pink seedlings-Wicking Bed 3 **
Florence Fennel seedlings-Wicking Tank a **
Parcel one seedling-Wicking Tank c with the Turnips
Pea Snow Roi de Carouby seedlings-in Wicking Bed 3
Radicchio Rossa di Treviso seedlings-Wicking Tank c with the Turnips
Silverbeet Green Organic seedlings-the Wicking Bed in Almond Area

Emu Bush: info here
Eremophila glabra (orange)
Eremophila maculata (pink)
Eremophila weldii (deep mauve)
Golden Daisy Bush Euryops pectinatus info here
Wild Fuchsia Info here Correa "Dusty Bells"
Rock Rose White Cistus ladanifer
A Yellow flowering Groundcover (???name)

** Out-of-season Plantings
The plants marked ** are trial autumn plantings as these plants did not grow well over summer. The beds will be covered with some fleece to keep out some frost but hopefully the early start for these seedlings will mean they put on good growth before the really cold weather sets in.

To see the Garden Layout of our half acre block check out the (newly updated) Map of our place HERE


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