Monday, September 21, 2009

Monday harvest post - vegetable medley for one

This is going to be one of the shortest harvest posts of the season. We are dealing with illness at home and I'm ready to pass out from fatigue. But everything will turn out okay. Plus, I still have a harvest to report, with a new addition--one of the raspberry plants that had self-seeded from one of Asa's in the next plot is now bearing fruit. Just a few berries, but it's a start.The first thing I did upon arrival at my MSG plot last Tuesday was dispose of around ten blighted tomatoes, including these two that had degenerated into ooze when I handled them with some old newspaper. One of the other gardeners had read somewhere that a cold winter would kill off any remaining blighted plant matter, but I'd like to investigate that more.I felt like I had hit the jackpot when I discovered two blight-free tomatoes, including one that had fallen to the ground. And I continue to harvest a few pole beans, broccoli side shoots, and cherry tomatoes, though only enough for a vegetable medley for one. The term "vegetable medley" reminds me of airline meals; my serving wasn't much larger.Back in the garden on Thursday, I had a similar yield. One of my broccoli plants is growing a new head, though it will probably be a third of the size of the original. Using a camera to document, I plan to hold off on estimating the value of my broccoli and raspberries until I get some more. But I will continue with tomatoes and beans, using the same prices from my last tally.Previous benefits total: $123.72
1/3 pound (estimated) of green beans at $0.99/lb.: $0.33
1 pound of organically grown tomatoes at $3/lb.: $3.00
New benefits total: $127.05

Current costs total: $171.57
New balance: - $44.52

It's been hard to believe given the last week or so of really pleasant, seasonable weather that I wouldn't have a tomato harvest that would put me in the black. Sigh...


Michelle said...

What a heart breaker for everyone hit by late blight. :( Most of my tomato plants look horrible now but the tomatoes are fine, maybe better for their suffering. I hope next year is better for all of you.

Dan said...

The rotten tomatoes are a common sight in my yard. I would say 80% of my tomatoes went brown with white puffy stuff. I hope you get better soon, maybe a broccoli smoothy will help ;-)

Sally said...

Hi Michelle, I think if I had a choice between horrible plants or horrible tomatoes, I'd take horrible plants. Your tomatoes look great.

Dan, you and I have a similar ratio of healthy to rotted tomatoes. My daughter made a smoothie with the few raspberries we had, but it tasted more like all the other ingredients she added.

Thanks for the comments and good wishes!

Daphne said...

I can give you some knowledge on late blight and why it is sometimes contradictory. Late blight forms too kinds of spores oospores (sexually reproduced spores that require a male and female). Oospores can survive off of living tissue and can sit in the soil and wait until future years (I have no idea how cold hardy they are). Oospores have not been found up here yet. They have been found in Florida. That is not to say they can't form up here someday if the male and female fungii meet. The odds are we have no oospores up here.

Zoospores are asexual spores and are the spores we usually get around here. They can't live without having a living host. So the tomato foliage shouldn't be an issue. The potato foliage shouldn't be an issue. Any left over potato tubers are what should get us all again next year. The tubers can carry the blight into next year since they are living tissue. If you don't get every single little tuber it will come back next year.

Congrats on your raspberries. I so love reaspberries. They are such weeds around here. They keep trying to invade my blueberries, but I love them anyway. They are so tasty.

Giulietta said...

Hey Sally,

It's not the swine is it? Hope you're all feeling better soon.

I've got no tomato plants this year, but we plan on planting some next year - so into "A Nation of Farmers."

I love tomatoes so it breaks my taste buds to learn they also have perhaps some derivation of the swine. Tomato swine?


Sally said...

Daphne, thanks for that info. I was just asking other Steering Committee members what we should be telling gardeners to when they remove their tomato plants at the end of the season. Sounds like it might be okay for plant compost, perhaps.

Your botanical knowledge in your blog and comments has impressed me. Let's see...master gardener, craftsperson, scientist too?

Giuli, it's about time you got your hands dirty! Seriously, hope we all have a better tomato season next year.