There is a certain urge after New Year, to get your supply of seeds in order, ready for sowing. February is my time for sowing tomato seeds in an indoor heated windowsill propagator. It is ideal for what I want and it fits my windowsill. Although it has seven little trays, I usually have to wait until the seedlings are ready to pot-on before I can sow anything else. However, I was given an identical one for Christmas thus speeding up the amount of seeds I can germinate at the same time.
I always sow plenty of seeds, but from experience, I don’t need a whole packet full in the one year, so have learned to cut it down to between five and eight seeds to each little tray. That still gives ample to allow for failures, plant exchanges and still have a few to offer freely to anyone who wants them.
This year’s choices are:-
1. Gardener’s Delight, a delicious, all-time favourite, sweet, larger sized cherry tomato.
2. Black Cherry, not quite as sweet as Gardener’s Delight but tasty and just as prolific.
3. Shirley, a good all round hybrid, delicious, tomato which is really nice in salads.
4. Garden Peach, a nice sized yellow tomato which is supposed to get it’s name from it’s slightly fuzzy skin. I grew it last year and liked it so much I am growing it again.
5. Marmande, one of the larger tomatoes, looking a bit like a pin cushion is good enough to grow again this year.
6. Marglobe, another large, delicious tomato I am growing again.
7. Ildi, not normally interested in tiny tomatoes but I decided to grow it for the sake of my neighbour’s grandchildren, hopefully it will be grown outdoors in a pot.
8. Black Opal, who could resist any tomato described as dark chocolate coloured?
9. Rosella, deep pink and apparently have a taste of raspberries, blackberries and other summer fruits, looking forward to tasting that one.
10. Sweet Aperitif, another sweet cherry tomato and new to me, so I will look forward to trying them.
11. Black Russian, it’s more like mahogany and green in colour with orange flesh. It would seem that different people get a different taste experience which may be due to where they are gown. It has been described as slightly smokey so it may be a talking point at a barbecue.
12. Berner Rose, pink, medium-sized tomato, chosen because it was recommended for growing in cooler areas. I had problems with blossom end rot with it the first two years whether growing it in a hydroponic tank or in a pot. I had better results last year so will have another go at it this year. It’s a nice enough tomato to make it worth trying again.
Other seeds need to be sown at this time are the peppers, I should have some chilli pepper seeds from last year but the rest will be sweet peppers. My new variety this year is a lilac pepper, Sweet Pepper Tequila. It changes colour several times from green through to red but it can been picked at the lavender stage. I also saved seeds from a supermarket pepper and had some very nice results. They were nothing like the mini orange peppers I bought but you never know what you will get with commercial produce.
Adding to the tomatoes and peppers, I have just sown seeds for banana trees which I got as a Christmas gift. The packet assures me once germinated, they will grow 12 inches in the first month, now that will be interesting. My plans for a tropical look garden might just turn out to be closer to a jungle. We lack the tropical weather but can probably oblige with a monsoon!
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