I have been eating tomatoes.
Yellow ones! And a red one! I've also been eating okra! (Lots of okra, LORD is that ever a food fit for southern weather, it just keeps regenerating overnight). Today there are two cucumbers in the garden, plus one bell pepper and YOU GUYS I THINK I AM A FARMER NOW.
Let's back up to Father's Day weekend, when I picked the first tomato. Well, Claire picked the first tomato. It was a Yellow Pear and I told her we were going to pick our first tomato and she got very excited. She ran outside while I grabbed my camera. I wanted to get a few snaps of The First Tomato (Ever!) on the vine, and then pictures of Claire picking it because it was kind of a big deal.
When I arrived outside, seven seconds later, she had already picked it.
Okay, then! Here's the first harvest, one Yellow Pear tomato and three okras:
After that I got three more Yellow Pears, a (red!) Amish Paste, and a lot more okra over the next week. Harvest as of July 2, 2012 is:
4 Yellow Pear Tomatoes: 1.4 ounces
1 Amish Paste Tomato: 1.5 ounces
13 Okra: 10 ounces
At this rate, I will absolutely not be earning back my money. Let's hope things pick up. Okra is about $1.48/pound at Walmart and okra cannot carry the fiscal burden of this garden. The tomatoes need to start setting fruit.
Which....they are not. No new tomatoes in weeks. None at all still on my Brandywines or Mr Stripey. One of the Bradywines appears to be dying a slow, painful, turning-yellow-from-the-root-up, death. It's the plant the caterpillar ate, so I wonder if it was just too much to lose all those leaves at the same time. But then, the other Brandywines are looking similar (though not AS bad right now), so that makes me think it's a problem with the variety.
I know it's tough to pick out the single Brandywine plant in this picture, but it's the one that's yellow at the bottom:
I'm not sure what's going on.
Anyway, it was time to fertilize again (related, maybe?) so I sprinkled some more of that STINKY STINKY stuff on the dirt. I am hoping somewhat lower temperatures (not 100's) plus the food for the plants will result in some more fruit being set. I have 12 plants and 7 of them have no tomatoes at all, which is just kind of sad. (Also annoying and frustrating, AGH STUPID TOMATO PLANTS.)
I'm encouraged to finally be getting FOOD from my back yard, but even though we're still pretty early in my personal heirloom tomato growing season, I'm super impatient to see more things going on back there. I should probably not start to panic and use four-letter-words until the end of July but that seems SO FAR AWAY. (Seriously, I looked at the calendar today and July has four full weeks, plus three days so July will likely never, ever end.)
Claire made a birdhouse (with two roofs) out of popsicle sticks and put it in the garden. Nobody tell her the way her birdhouse is constructed makes it impossible for a bird to actually get IN the birdhouse. It's a detail she doesn't want to hear about.
*You may not call me Farmer In The Dell. I suffered that humiliation in grade school, we don't need to revisit.