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August 18, 2007



Your tomatoes look wonderful! And thanks for the review of each one. I hope your shoulder is feeling better, and that you get good news from the orthopedist. I always have big fall plans too, so I can imagine how you're feeling. BUT, much better to let everything heal. The great part of gardening is that you can do it at your own pace!


Last February I slipped on the ice and did NOT break my ribs according to the x-rays. But I was in a bad way for more than a month with pain coming from unexpected movement of my torso.

I love tomatoes.

Marie (fna Piana Nanna)

There's nothing worse than being told you can't do something. I know you'll be anxious to get going again, but take it easy. Doctor knows best.


I am so sorry about the shoulder and all that storm damage...!
I am lucky to have come back to your blog today, I love the way you rate your veggies!! I didn't plant a single one you did, though.
Please take care of yourself!


Great tomato review. I'll remember your results when placing my seed order for next year. I also enjoyed a Prudens Purple (Farmers Market grown) recently. It was yummy and is on my wish list for next year. Good luck with your shoulder.


Yikes! So sorry to hear about your fall and injury, ouch! I hope you are soon mended.

Thanks for the tomato review --I may have to try Gregoris Altai next year.

Take good care of yourself, there is always next year to garden!


Hi Tracy,
I'm glad your shoulder is mending.

So, after reading this post I realized I'm pretty clueless on tomatoes and had no idea there were all these different kinds. Do you start them from seeds? Do you use seeds from this year's tomato or do you buy new ones? Can a person order just a few seeds? (because my garden is pretty small and I can't put in more than 4 plants)

Annie in Austin

The photo is mouth-watering, and at least you get to harvest them, even if you have to restrain yourself from plunging into the borders with digging forks.

May the healing process be swift and straightforward, Tracy!

Annie at the Transplantable Rose


Thanks everyone. Having delicious home-grown tomatoes certainly eases a bit of the pain! My shoulder is starting to feel a lot better this week. I still don't have a full range of motion, but it's improved by leaps and bounds in the past 4-5 days.


RuthieJ: You should definitely plant some tomatoes next year! Nothing could be easier to grow - just make sure they have lots of sun and that you water them regularly.

I start all mine from seed for the last two years. I've been purchasing my seed (rather than saving my own) because I've been trying lots of different varieties. Because I don't use all the seed in the packet, I think I'll use this year's seed next year. Usually, tomato seed lasts for a few years if stored in a cool, dry place. You usually can't order just a few seeds, but packets are about $3.00 on average, so it's not too much of an investment.

However, if you've never grown tomatoes before, I recommend purchasing transplants at the garden center or finding a friend who starts their own and has some extras. Until you know for sure you like growing tomatoes and can do it successfully in your garden, it's probably a better way to start.

There are lots of varieties available, you just need to do some shopping around. I don't know the nurseries in your area, but up here I've had good luck with Cal's in Savage - they have at least 15-20 different varieties each spring, including lots of heirlooms.

If you decide to start your own seeds, you'll want to do it about mid-March for planting around Memorial Day. If you start them any earlier, the seedlings get too big. I usually start about 50% more than I need, since all the seeds don't always germinate (so if you want 4 plants, start at least 6 seeds). The best way is to grow them under fluorescent lights - our Minnesota springtime sun is usually not strong enough to get good growth.

No matter which way you go, I think you should at least try some tomatoes. You can tuck them right into the flower garden and enjoy something you grew yourself.


Hi there,
With a love of tomatoes I am always looking for ways to improve my produce. I have been growing them for over 11 years without using nasty chemicals, so any new ideas that I can pick up along the way are greatly appreciated.
Many thanks.

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