|Newly dug into the patch tomato plant.|
Melbourne Cup is the weekend Melbournians are told it's safe to plant out the tomatoes. And all over the city and suburbs Melbournians are getting their gloves on and digging up the veggie patches. Even through the rain. So in keeping with tradition at my place in they went this morning.
This is the first time I've grown tomatoes from seed so I'm pretty pleased with myself. I'm only growing tommy toe this year - not too much space after all the other veggies I've planned. I dug some compost through the bed (yes I know I should have done that a couple of weeks ago but hey I'm a "beginner gardener"). One thing I have learned is that tomato seedlings like to be planted in deep. This makes them stronger and promotes root growth.
Last year my neighbour came over to check out my tomatoes, pulled out my stakes and erected a big bamboo wall construction for the tomatoes. This is the Calabrian way he told me - much better. (He also removed the marigolds and other flowers I had growing in the patch - apparently flowers in veggie gardens aren't the Calabrian way! But who's complaining after all the free seedlings, manure, advice and labour he gives us.) I attempted to re-construct his wall this year - let's hope it doesn't blow down in a wind.
I love this time of year. You know certain times bring back memories. Before I had kids I would always celebrate Melb Cup weekend with friends at a relaxing barbie or some sort of function. It was often the first weekend all year when we'd see the sun and know that summer holidays were on their way. After I had kids though those BBQ invites dried up and the Melb Cup weekend corresponded with exam marking time for me. Urgh! Fortunately, I no longer mark exams and my social life has lifted a tad. So this weekend I've got a couple of relaxing, fun social engagements, no work commitments and time to get my hands dirty in the garden.