for the tomatoes

IMG_3690
To say that growing tomatoes is a challenge here in the coastal Pacific Northwest would be putting it lightly.  Last year we finally eked out a few medium-sized slicers and several cherries, but nothing close to what our tomato dreams are made of.
This winter I put some time into researching things (especially frugal ones) we could do to better our tomato chances.  This article from Mother Earth News was very helpful and served as the basis for most of our tomato decisions this year.  In addition, I paid special attention to their regional tips.
Among other things, we covered our tomato plot with a sheet of black plastic/landscaping paper two months before planting (to heat the ground), and we bought all of our tomato seedlings at a local nursery that specializes in tomato varieties that do well in our area.
So where does the black spray paint come in?
IMG_3692
After our tomatoes were finally in the ground, I took the half-gallon and gallon jugs I’d been saving over several months and spray painted them black.
IMG_3694
We filled them with water and then toted them over to the Garden Annex . . .
IMG_4421
where they sit between the tomato plants.  The theory is that the jugs absorb heat from the sunlight during the day and then release the heat back out through the night, giving the tomatoes some extra help. 
IMG_4370
I don’t know if it’s actually working or not, but Bug spotted our first little tomatoes last week, and more have appeared since then.
IMG_4371
We’ve had three discouraging days of almost-steady rain, but I’m planning on adding as many additional jugs as I can so we can hopefully make up for lost time when the sun returns.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s