Manistee, Michigan

gardening interests: Composting, Container Gardening, Cooking, Culinary Herbs, Edible Landscaping, Fruits and Berries, Organic Gardening, Ornamental Gardening, Vegetables

Member Since: 01/19/2011

recent comments

Re: Tomatoes: Request for Reader Recommendations

I may possibly go a bit over the top on planting tomatoes as I generally end up planting 16-18 varieties each summer, always adding one or two new ones and dropping others. Many of my faves were mentioned, Cherokee Purple, Black cherry, Caspian Pink, Lemon Boy, and of course the favorite Sungold. A few others I love are Dr. Wyche's Yellow, White Wonder, and a huge red one called Aunt Anna, which does not produce large numbers but is delicious. I have two stand-by reds that I grow for canning and drying, Park's Whopper, a delicious large red always reliably heavy producer, and Viva Italia which is a paste type that I use for drying because it has way better flavor than any other paste tomato I have ever tried. Next summer I plan to try Kellog's Breakfast one more time. Last time I tried those I got zero germination from the seeds. Another interesting variety is the Stuffer tomato, which actually comes in red, yellow or pink, and is almost hollow on the interior, like peppers. It's not the tastiest tomato but is fun to stuff with either salad ingredients or to fill and bake.

Re: QUESTION: composting wood ash

Absolutely you can add wood ashes to your compost pile. Just make sure you mix it in because if you just dump them in a pile they will clump up in there, a mistake I made once. When mixed in with your compost the ashes will be less likely to burn any plants than if applied directly around plants. They are potash after all, a component of fertilizer.

Re: QUESTION: Problem with Tomato Seedlings

Two things come to mind, the first being perhaps not enough light, like someone else mentioned. The other is maybe lack of nutrition. Those commercial seed starting mixes are great to start seeds but they have no nutrition in them to support larger plants. Have you been fertilizing the plants? I get this lower leaves yellowing on my tomato plants in the greenhouse when they are getting too big for the containers they are in, and not getting enough fertilizer. An added suggestion, when you plant them in your garden, dig a deep hole and sink the plants down to where the leaves start. You will get a great root system.

Re: Pinetree Garden Seeds

I have been ordering from Pinetree for almost as long as they have been in business. My other order companies vary from year to year but I always order from them because they have good varieties to choose from, keep their prices reasonable by not wasting a lot of money on glossy photos of every item and have really good and friendly service. I have also found they are sometimes the first company to have some awesome new variety and they offered seed mixes, like my favorite lettuce mix, before all the other companies figured out this was a good thing to do.