Tag Archives: tomatoes

Homestead Update 5-28-16

28 May

I am back to working my usual 70 hour work week for this time of year so I didn’t have much time for chores around the homestead, but I did want to write a quick update. Not only am I working long hours, when I do have a little time off when it rains, I have still been going to Arkansas to get my parents house ready to move into and check on my sister after her snake bite. She is doing much better now, but she was in the hospital 7 days receiving intravenous antibiotics. I asked her if the bite hurt and she said yes, it burned like fire anytime the pain meds wore off the first few days!

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We needed to make a quick, one night, trip so we decided to take Brandy with us on a “shake down” cruise to see how she traveled. Low and behold, she was a perfect traveler! It is a five hour trip and she slept most of the way down, and when we came home she did the same thing so apparently riding makes her calm and sleepy. When we arrived at the new house, she ran and played and was not bothered in the least that she was in a strange, new place.

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Those are volunteer tomatoes that came up in a large pot right out of our back door. The upper picture was taken only a week prior to the picture below, the third picture was another week later, they are really growing. We always have these volunteer tomatoes come up. I have read instructions on saving tomato seeds where you wash the pulp and dry the seeds on top of a refrigerator. I’m sure that works fine, but we don’t go to that trouble. During the growing season, when we see a tomato we don’t intend to harvest for any reason, we leave it on the vine until it gets very overripe. We then pick the tomato and drop it into the soil in the pots. We had literally dozens of small plants emerge this Spring. We gave some away and I replanted the rest after I put new potting soil in the pots. That is good, Miracle Grow potting soil by the way, it is much better than cheap, Dollar Store potting soil. You could do the same thing in a garden, and if you wanted to rotate locations in the garden to help reduce disease pressure, you could simply drop the overripe tomatoes in the location you want them to grow the following year. Simple and easy, just the way I like it. More to come tomorrow. Keep Prepping everyone!

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Homestead Update

6 Sep

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The garden is almost finished for the season, we are picking the final tomatoes and cantaloupes.

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We went to the Farmer’s Market and bought some nice fresh Okra and Vidalia Onions. Sweet Thing used our Tomatoes and the Okra and Onions to make some delicious Okra and Tomatoes. This dish is so good I’ll bet even Pioneer Preppy would like it!

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I hooked up my disc and worked up a spot in the back and planted 4 different winter greens. We will pick what we want and leave the rest for the deer to eat this winter.

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I bought a piece of culvert to go into the gully in the middle of the homestead. As things are now, we have 16 acres of woods in the back and the only way to get there now is on foot. After I get the culvert installed, we can go to the woods on the tractor or the ATV. I expect we will spend more time back there when it gets easier to get to. More to come.

Homestead Update

30 Aug

Yes, I am still alive, I just have been too tired to get excited enough to sit down and compose a post. Things should be slowly winding down for this season so I should at least be able to getting back to working up some posts for the weekends.

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Not much true homestead activity this Summer, just mowing and picking up limbs. I am still getting some ‘maters off of my plants and Sweet Thing is still eating them.

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My eyes were hurting last week so I stopped into Walgreens and bought some eye drops. Talk about deceptive packaging! Look at the size of that box compared to the size of the bottle! I got taken on that deal.

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I am starting to see some open cotton bolls and that always cheers me up. The end is in sight.

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I am seeing a few fields of corn being harvested, and the rest should be in full swing within a week so that is definitely a good sign this season is drawing to an end.

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I made a good roadside find this week. I was going down a road that has a lot of vehicles pulling boats going to a local lake and I spotted this rain jacket on the shoulder of the road. It had the logo for Ranger Boats on it and I figure it blew out of someone’s boat as they were going down the road. It is even my size! I took it home and Sweet Thing washed it with a little Lysol in the wash in case it had cooties and I am going to hang it out in my workshop in case I get caught unexpectedly in the rain. It always pays to be prepared. Keep prepping everyone!

Freeze Warning

15 Apr

After two weeks of nice weather, the temps are headed down for two nights and the NWS has issued a freeze warning. Great!

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Yesterday I planted two large tomato plants in these pots and I don’t want them to freeze.

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I used two large garbage bags to make mini greenhouses to protect them from the low temps. I hope this works out because I paid $6 each for those plants! I knew it was too early to be setting out tomato plants.

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We received 2 inches of rain last night and today so I know my puppies were miserable. It didn’t stop them from coming out of their houses and watching to see what I was doing! Keep prepping everyone!

Homestead Update

12 Apr

The weather has been really nice this week, so nice in fact, I had to do some work for my JOB this week. That real job sure does interfere with the activities on the ole homestead.

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I planted the berry vines I bought last fall. They sat in the pots all winter and they survived without any problems.

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I needed 4 more grape vines to finish out the row so I bought these at Wal-Mart. They were sprouted and growing and looked really healthy so I took a chance on them.

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The fruit trees I planted last fall are leafed out and looking good now. I have planted 30 trees and they have all survived so far. We should have an actual orchard some day with a variety of apple, pear, peach, plum, and cherry trees to go along with the grapes, blackberries, raspberries, and blueberries!

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I went by a local feed and seed store in town and picked up some tomatoes. I got two different varieties of heirloom tomatoes, Rutgers and Arkansas Traveler. I also got two hybrid bush tomatoes to plant in pots to put by the back door. Sweet Thing can just step out the door and pick one to eat whenever she wants!

Aphids!

28 Aug

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I have four heirloom tomatoes growing in my garden and I noticed this morning I have an aphid infestation. Rats! Well, I can solve that organically, I will just mix up a soap and water mixture and spray them down and that should solve that problem. As I was checking out the aphids I noticed I also have Cercospora Leaf Spot. This afternoon on the way home from work I stopped by Lowe’s to pick up a fungicide spray and much to my dismay all the fungicide sprays also included an insecticide in the mix. So much for my plan to stay organic in the garden. I hope the tomatoes do well this season because I usually don’t have a lot of success with them. I can do well with Okra, Squash or peas but when it comes to tomatoes “Heh, not so much”. I think I try too hard and “kill them with kindness”. I am always applying fertilizer or spraying them with something and I think I might be better off just leaving them alone and let Mother Nature take her course. I’ll let you know how they turn out.

Heirloom Tomatoes

15 Jul

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Sweet Thing came home from the Ripley Tomato Festival with these Heirloom tomatoes. I tried them and I can almost eat them. They are not pretty, as is the case with most heirloom vegetables. She said they were really tasty, some of the best she ever ate. I am going to try to save the seeds out of one of them and see if I can raise some on the homestead next year. Maybe I can develop a taste for raw tomatoes, I know they would be good for me. Any of you have any favorite heirloom vegetables you like?