Monday, April 5, 2010

Getting the most out of a small area

Choose Indeterminate tomatoes. They keep growing and producing fruit until a killing frost. The other kind, which are called Determinate varieties save space because they are a smaller plant, but they produce all there fruit at once and then they are done. This is the kind that large scale tomato producers use so they can pick them all at once and sell to canneries.
The one I chose is BIG BOY from Bonnie Plants. It is an indeterminate variety, it grows in full sun, and maturity in 78 days. The tomatoes are large for slicing. We got our plants from Lowe's, but lots of places carry this brand. I planted 3 of these. I think that will be plenty to have fresh tomatoes on the table all through the summer plus enough to make my chow-chow, canned tomatoes, and tomato sauce. I might even try a few bottles of cat sup.

Other things to remember when planting in a small space is plant only the things your family will eat. No since in wasting precious garden space by planting stuff no one wants. I learned my lesson last year when I planted beans. I found out after just one or two batches of beans that my husband hates them. I like them OK, but not enough to work that hard on them so I pulled them out.
In the spring, plant cool-season vegetables like lettuce, mescalin , arugula, scallions, and spinach. They are ready to harvest in a short time, and they act as space holders until the warm-season vegetables fill in.
Grow vertically. Peas, small melons, squash, cucumbers, and pole beans have a small foot print when grown vertically. Plus they yield more over a longer time than bush types. I tried squash last year and the plants got huge and beautiful with plenty of blossoms, but no produce at all. It must be my soil. I had no luck at all so I am not going to try it again. I have planted black-eye peas (that's our favorite). Plants like broccoli, eggplants, peppers, chard, and kale are worth the space they take for a long season. As long as you keep harvesting, they keep right on producing. I did Chinese eggplant last year, and they did very well. It seems like those potato bugs are attracted to them though, I did have to use a lot of insecticide. The peppers that I planted this year is Jalapeno, also from Bonnie Plants. I did green and red sweet bell peppers last year only to find out that, like the beans, no one would eat them.
by Kay longboy

1 comment:

  1. the reason you have beautiful plant and they produce nothing is to much fertilizer