My tomatoes have been getting blight (I believe it’s septoria leaf spot) earlier and earlier each year. I decided that I need to move them completely out of my main garden area this year.
I built these four 2 foot by 2 foot raised “bed” boxes up by my back porch. They’ll get great sun and they’ll be in new dirt that shouldn’t already be innoculated with whatever blights my other soil is carrying.
The tomatoes will grow up these uprights and shade our picnic table. I’ll just tie them up as they grow. Tomatoes need at least 4 square feet when placed next to each other in a raised bed garden. But since these will have lots of airspace all around them, I’m planning on planting each of these boxes with 1 tomato and 2 basil.
The bed shown here got worked on last weekend. I dug it over as deep as I could with my garden spade, then moved the dirt aside and tried to get most of it dug twice as deep as that. I was helped along in my cultivation by the tree and bush roots I had to keep tearing out, some a half inch wide and running the length of the bed.
This is a 8 foot by 6 foot bed, with the center 2 feet raised an additional 6 inches. I put three rows of carrot seeds up top there. The two bottom sections both got three rows of beet seeds planted in them. I have NEVER been successful at growing a beet in my garden, but I have high hopes that I’m somehow doing something different this year.
Things are growing very well in the little hoop house I built over a 4 x 8 foot garden bed. Here’ s a peek inside.
Unfortunately my arch-nemesii the moles have found there way up under and inside here. There will be blood.
As I said earlier, I did get to plant out many of my tomato plants. We were working in a sprinkling rain most of the time, but we did get 12 put into this bed and another 7 put in other places.
These 12 are paste tomatoes (Amish Paste [Indeterminate, open pollinated] and Heinz 2653 [Determinate, open pollinated]) and are a bit farther from the shadiest parts of the garden than the other bed. Tomorrow I plant my Oxheart and Cabin tomatoes [both Indeterminate, open pollinated] that I grew from seeds I saved in 2009.
As you probably see, I have installed the weed barrier and cut holes for the tomato plants. After finishing these 12, I also got the black fabric laid down on the next bed before it was raining too hard and getting dark.
Don’t my helpers remind you of The Gleaners in this shot?
When we remembered to, we put a handful of crushed egg shells in each planting hole to help provide the tomatoes with the calcium they need to avoid blossom end rot.
The tomatoes will grow quickly enough, so I’ll need to start getting my trellis’ (trellii?) put together in the next week or so. The ones I’m planting tomorrow are already tall enough that I’ll have to tie them to a little stake or bury them quite deep.