The final three are in – Ferline, Sungold and Yellow Balconi. I’ve also moved the colours, Cherokee Purple and Green Zebra, out from the unheated propagator lid into the Sankey. Their compost was cold to the touch whereas in the heated propagator, a toasty tog factor was at work. There just hasn’t been enough window streaming, solar power to heat things up.
I’ve also a nagging feeling the compost’s too wet. When sowing, I’d popped the seed trays into a shallow tray of water, the phone rang and then one long call later – well I guess we’re talking prune rather than tomato. I’m hoping they still germinate and don’t just rot.
I enjoyed this article by Sarah Wain from West Dean Gardens, the walled kitchen garden paradise nestling in beautiful West Sussex and home each September to Christmas come early; aka the Totally Tomato Show.
There’s plenty of helpful know-how in the article but given where we are in the tomato growing year, I wanted to highlight the sowing related advice:
- Each seed is sown in an individual 7.6cm pot ( so not doubling up was the right call ?!)
- Then on into a 15cm pot (exact timings not given)
- Cropping position – outdoor plants get planted and staked into wide soil borders, sheltered by a handsome wall. And glasshouse plants are potted into individual terracotta pots, ranging in diameter from 15cm – 40cm, depending on variety.
The advice on timings, given the southerly location, was interesting – later than I’d expected. Plants destined for:
- Heated glasshouse – sown early March
- Unheated glasshouse – sown late March
- Outdoors – sown early April for planting out in late May/early June after frosts
So plenty of time left to add more to the 2010 mix! Which, as the article kicks off, with the astonishing fact of there being 8,000 tomato varieties, is much needed !
So in case you want a little help whittling them down, varieties recommended by West Dean include:
Glasshouse raised cherry tomatoes:
- Rosada F1
- Cherrola F1
- Chocolate Cherry
- Piccolo F1
- Nectar F1
- Aunt Ruby’s German Green
- Hillbilly Potato Leaf
- Black from Tula
- Marizol Gold
- Rose de Berne