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It’s Tomato Time!

The Acre. It’s been too long since the last blog post. Now that gardening season is here, I should have lots of opportunities to share what’s going on in the acre.

Friday, April 8th, I had a bit of time and thought it would be the ideal time to get some tomatoes planted at the Acre. I’d planted a couple of early tomato and pepper plants on March 26, the Saturday before Easter, into an Earthbox planter for easy access to fresh vegetables while cooking. You remember that Easter Sunday I’m sure, and waking up to that beautiful snowfall! The snow protected the plants with its insulating properties and the plants are doing well.

Most years, I plant some gamble garden tomato plants, but I typically wait until it’s pretty much frost-free to plant the large number of warm season plants. That Friday, I planted 54 tomatoes. The majority were of the Jet Star variety, with the remainder being heirloom varieties and cherry/grape tomatoes. With the cultivated ground feeling warm, I added 18 pepper plants. I just knew they would love the warm soil and get established.

Well, Mother Nature was not done with cold temperatures this spring. With a frost in the forecast for Tuesday morning, and not wanting to have any plants damaged by a potential frost, the plants in the garden were covered with nursery containers. Luckily, the temperatures pretty much stayed in the 40’s and no damage was done.

It’s important to get the vegetable plants off to a good start early on. Last season, I tried several fertilizers and really liked how the Gardener’s Special from ferti-lome kept the plants growing. I think it is the 11-15-11 analysis that with 11% nitrogen kept the plants green and growing. This year, I added a mineral supplement from Cascade Minerals. The Cascade Minerals’ Remineralizing Soil Booster is not a fertilizer, but adds valuable trace elements to the soil at planting time. This Soil Booster is made from all-natural, finely milled, volcanic basalt that mimics the Earth’s own method for producing healthy soil by releasing essential trace minerals. Fresh sources of rock minerals, like those in Cascade Minerals, are essential to the life vitality of your plants and key to supporting healthier soils.
• Increases the availability of other nutrients in the soil.
• More Nutritious Fruits & Vegetables, More Colorful Blossoms, and More Vigorous Plants
• Excellent source of Silicon for increasing plant salt and rought tolerance – this increases plant cell strength and pest resistance.

What’s going into the Acre next? Well, I’ve found a volunteer vine crop seedling, a melon I believe. This tells me that the soil temperature is right for cucumbers, melons and squash.

I’m ready for summer vegetables from the Acre, I hope you are too!

As Always,
Happy Gardening,

Marty Johnson