Planting Tomato Seeds for 2007 (Method)

Discussion in 'Fruit and Vegetable Gardening' started by Durgan, Feb 2, 2007.

  1. Durgan

    Durgan Contributor 10 Years

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    http://xrl.us/umgc

    http://www.durgan.org/2%20February%202006%20Planting%20Tomato%20Seeds/HTML/index.htm

    3 February 2007 Zone 5. Tomato seeds were started indoors today. The plants will have small fruit when planted outdoors in May and some will be ripe by about the 10 of June 2007. I expect a slightly warmer than usual season due to Global Warming. In my case this phenomena is serendipitous, so I am taking advantage of it.

    The fibre pot is soaked in miracle grow to give some nutrients about the time the seedling roots require it. The coffee filter is put into the bottom of the plastic pot to prevent soil from falling out of the drainage holes, and to facilitate transplanting into a larger pot with minimal root disturbance, when the seedlings reach the appropiate size.

    I have found if the fibre pot is used alone, it dries out too fast, since the fibre pot acts like a wick drawing moisture away from the seedlings. By putting soil around the fibre pot adequate moisture is kept in the area of the seeding, and watering is not so critical.

    Three seeds were used per pot, and as they grow the strongest will be kept and the others cut off at root level. I have previously tested this batch of seeds for viability by putting two or three seds of each variety in one pot and observing growth, a precaution since these seeds were saved from last years tomato crop. I expect nearly 100% germination.

    The compartmentized holding tray is more suitable than a flat tray since the pots are held more securely, when movng from place to place. Unfortunatley, the compartment size is slightly too small for the pots chosen, but it is adequate.

    My small heated outdoor green house will be utilized after the seeds sprout. For now, they are on a table in a warm place in the basement. Once sprouted they require more light than what is available in the basement. Artificial lights are not quite adequate for the strong healthy plants, that I desire.

    http://www.durgan.org/Blog/Durgan.html Garden Journal 2007.
     
    Last edited: Apr 4, 2007
  2. skeeterbug

    skeeterbug Active Member

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    I started my seeds back in mid Jan. I sprout my seeds on a saucer with a wet paper towel and then plant 1 seed per cup or compartment of starter trays.

    I am trying a new variety this year--has anyone ever tried ARKANSAS TRAVELER TOMATO SEEDS?

    I discovered a new pepper I fell in love with last year as well--a Giant Marconi. We use it in a chilli relleno casserole that is delicous.

    Skeet
     
  3. Durgan

    Durgan Contributor 10 Years

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    http://xrl.us/umgc 3 February 2007

    http://xrl.us/uqz5 10 February 2007

    http://xrl.us/u3y9 25 February 2007

    http://xrl.us/u8do 8 March 2007

    10 February 2007 Tomato seeds planted on the 3 February 2007 have all sprouted. I have them under bright lights for now, since Global Warming has suddenly changed in my area, and the greenhouse is still a bit too cool at night. The germination was almost 100% except for one pot of Russian Krim. The plants reached this stage in 6 days.

    Durgan.
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2007
  4. Durgan

    Durgan Contributor 10 Years

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    25 February 2007 Zone 5. These pictures indicate the growth after 22 days. They were started on 3 Februay 2007. All plants are strong and healthy. I have two plants in each pot. When trasnplanted to a larger pot, one will be cut off.

    Durgan.
     
  5. Anne58

    Anne58 Active Member

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    Looks like your domain has expired - at least that is the message I get when I click on your links.
     
  6. Anne58

    Anne58 Active Member

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    I use a similar method except that I use regular writing paper. I find that my sprouted seeds get their roots buried in the paper toweling and it is difficult to transplant them into their pots.

    I started my seeds about 2 weeks ago and put the sprouted seeds into their pots last weekend. All the seed are now up and I have moved them into stronger light. How ironic that this morning I woke up to a couple of inches of snow here in Vancouver. I hope it doesn't scare my little tomato plants LOL!
     
  7. skeeterbug

    skeeterbug Active Member

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    Thanks Anne, That is a good idea. It reminds me of a tip I got from our local horticulture expert on his garden show about starting small seeds (like snapdragon)-- he sprinkles the seeds on the soil and puts a layer of newspaper on top of the soil. Then he wets the paper and keeps it moist until the seeds push the paper up and carefully removes it. -- Skeet
     
  8. Durgan

    Durgan Contributor 10 Years

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    Now fixed 3 March 2007
    Durgan.
     
  9. Anne58

    Anne58 Active Member

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    Thanks Durgan!

    Your little plants look just like mine which are about 1 week old now. I have them in a south facing window (but provide shade on sunny days) in front of the heating vent. The warm air from the vent keeps the soil warm since it is cold in front of the window and the constant draft keeps the air circulating and lightly blows the little plantlets back and forth.

    Hopefully by the time they are 3 weeks old they will be a vigorous as yours!!
    Anne
     
  10. Durgan

    Durgan Contributor 10 Years

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    8 March 2007. Today I moved some tomato plants to the greenhouse. These plants were started on 3 Feb 2007, so they are 33 days old.

    Four days ago the door and the side of the greenhouse were damaged by a strong wind, so I had to haywire a quick repair with scrap lumber and make a new door. It took me about 6 hours in a strong wind and in about the coldest day we had this winter. I will fix it more come summer. I have had this greenhouse for three years, and it has served me well.

    The greenhouse is heated with a 6000 BTU Pro Com Natural Gas heater from Northern Tools, and I have a small 750 Watt electric oil filled radiator for back up. I can go to about 10 degrees below C with no freezing. If colder than I move the plants indoors for the night. The fitting for the natural gas is outside for the barbeque, and I run a 50 foot extension welding hose for the heater. If and when I build a better greenhouse I may get the gas run into the structure with a more permanent connection. But I only use the green house for about three months and this seems to work reasonably well. On the floor there is a rubber backed mat, since the floor is only one in thick unfinished spruce boards screwed to some railway supports. The mat seals the cracks somewhat.

    The plants are placed in the greenhosue as soon as posible, since I don't have good light in the basement.

    Neena is two years old, and always helps me.

    Summary of growth to date.

    http://xrl.us/umgc 3 February 2007

    http://xrl.us/uqz5 10 February 2007

    http://xrl.us/u3y9 25 February 2007

    http://xrl.us/u6ky 3 March 2007 Transplanting.

    http://xrl.us/u8do 8 March 2007

    http://xrl.us/vcqi 14 March 2007 Start of hardening off.

    http://23March2007Tomato.notlong.com 23 March 2007

    http://TomatoeP.notlong.com 4 April 2007 Tomatoe Plant update

    http://Tomatoupdate2.notlong.com 23 April 2007 Tomato Plant update.
    Durgan.
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2007
  11. Anne58

    Anne58 Active Member

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    Hi Durgan,

    Nice plants! Looks like they will be in good shape come outdoor planting time.

    I see you still have quite a bit of snow in Brantford. We're supposed to be getting sunny weather here on the west coast but so far March has been abismally wet - not the norm at all!

    My little tomatoes are just starting to get their first leaves but they are 2 weeks behind you, but I cheering them on!

    Anne
     
  12. Durgan

    Durgan Contributor 10 Years

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    9 May 2007. Do tomatos ripen on the vine in Vancouver; or stay green, and they have to be brought indoors for ripening?

    In Brantford we will be above freezing for the next few days, and it is going to rain. The snow should disappear fast, hopefully.The little greenhouse can handle down to about minus 15C, so it appears the tomatoes will survive.
     
  13. DandyLioness

    DandyLioness Active Member

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    Nice looking tomato plants, Durgan.

    I'm growing some Black Krim, BC Hothouse, and Strawberry tomatoes. I planted later than you do, so my plants are a bit smaller.
     
  14. Anne58

    Anne58 Active Member

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    Yes, Durgan, tomatoes will ripen on the vine in the Vancouver area. Our last frost is approx Apr 1 and the first frost not until late October, early November so we have lots of growing days. I usually bring in the last of the green tomatoes at the end of October and store them in the basement. Generally we are still eating 'garden' tomatoes in December :o)

    The biggest problem for tomato plants in Vancouver is 2 varieties of blight which attack the plants if they are not grown under cover of some sort. Since we have so much rain out here and the blight is air born, it is tough to get the tomatoes through to ripening and most people grow then in a green house or erect an unbrella like structure to keep the rain off the foliage.

    Anne
     
  15. Durgan

    Durgan Contributor 10 Years

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    14 March 2007. http://www.durgan.org/14 March 2007 Beginning of Harding Off Update/HTML/index.htm

    It was a bright and sunny day so I moved the tomato plants from the small greenhouse to the deck to expose the tomato plants to the elements to harden them off a bit. I left them out for about four hours then placed them back into the greenhouse.

    The plants will be moved out on days that the weather is suitable to toughen them up until transplanted to the out door garden.

    Durgan.
     
  16. Fossil

    Fossil Active Member 10 Years

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    I am just about to plant my tomato seeds - I've been a bit worried about the cold wet weather this year. My greenhouse is unheated so I have to raise the seedlings indoors (still getting frost here) so am hoping that with the slightly later start they will still be okay to plant out early enough for them to ripen before the end of summer?
     
  17. Durgan

    Durgan Contributor 10 Years

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    http://23March2007Tomato.notlong.com 23 March 2007 Tomato Update.

    The plants are doing well. I lost two, probably due to over-watering. It has been relatively cool for the last week, so they didn't grow much. The soil temperature in the pots was about 13 degrees C, but today the soil went up to 23 C. This was about our first warm day in Zone 5, Brantford, ON, Canada.

    Summary of growth to 14 April 2007.

    http://xrl.us/umgc 3 February 2007

    http://xrl.us/uqz5 10 February 2007

    http://xrl.us/u3y9 25 February 2007

    http://xrl.us/u6ky 3 March 2007 Transplanting.

    http://xrl.us/u8do 8 March 2007

    http://xrl.us/vcqi 14 March 2007 Start of hardening off.

    http://23March2007Tomato.notlong.com 23 March 2007

    http://TomatoeP.notlong.com 4 April 2007 Tomatoe Plant update

    http://Tomatoupdate2.notlong.com 23 April 2007 Tomato Plant update.

    http://www.durgan.org/Blog/Durgan.html 2007 Garden Journal
     
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2007
  18. Anne58

    Anne58 Active Member

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    Looking good Durgan!!

    I'm going to transplant mine into bigger pots this weekend. Now if only we could get rid of all this wet weather we've been having out here on the West Coast.

    March is usually warm and sunny - not this year!
     
  19. Durgan

    Durgan Contributor 10 Years

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    http://TomatoeP.notlong.com 4 April 2007 Tomatoe Plant update

    This is two months growth. The seeds were planted on 3 February 2007. There has been very few days of sun, so the plants have been kept in the greenhouse. Usually the plants are put outdoors when the weather is suitable.


    http://www.durgan.org/Blog/Durgan.html 2007 Garden Journal
     
  20. Anne58

    Anne58 Active Member

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    Looking good Durgan!

    I imagine you will have flowers on then soon after they get planted into your garden!

    Mine don't look anything like that yet but this is my first time growing tomatoes from seed. . . . . .

    Anne
     
  21. Durgan

    Durgan Contributor 10 Years

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    http://Tomatoupdate2.notlong.com 23 April 2007 Tomato Plant update.

    23 April 2007. Today half the tomatoe plant foliage was sprayed with a mild solution of Epson Salts. One tablespoon in a gallon of water. This is my test of the use of magnesium sulfate, which if often mentioned by various people to be beneficial. It is a reasonable first controlled test. Truth or fiction? At least it might satisfy me.

    I still have about a month before the plants can go into the outdoor garden. Today I staked the larger plants. The first flowers were removed about two weeks ago, and I remove the suckers regularly. All plants are healthy.

    http://www.durgan.org/Blog/Durgan.html
     
  22. Anne58

    Anne58 Active Member

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    Hi Durgan,

    Looks like a bad link (at least from my end) on your latest tomato pictures :o(
     
  23. EnglishGardener

    EnglishGardener Member

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    Link worked fine for me. Nice looking plants.
     
  24. Anne58

    Anne58 Active Member

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    Okay, it's working today. Maybe just a glitch in my system yesterday.

    Those plants are really nice looking and I bet they are anxious to get into the garden where they can stretch their roots. Looks like you will have another good crop this year.

    Anne
     

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