Well I have an excuse, it snowed! Then it cleared. Then it snowed! Then it cleared.
Our last snow fall was May 1. We got 7.5″ on April 23rd, and some a few days before that and even more before that. No fruit trees are flowering this year due to the late freeze and my alliums I always look forward to will be a bust. Its been a good number of years of mild springs I had forgotten how spring can be in Colorado.
So my Spring To Do list is as long as ever and it seems there is not a weekend for work in sight. I did manage to get some of the early bed cleanup done, and the first round of weeding, but the list is still way too long. I MUST get busy!
The other project I thought would be already in the works is my vegetable garden. I had grand plans of planting cool season veges like beets, radish and lettuce earlier than normal. Guess I jinxed myself with such fair weather talk. So the vegetable garden sits without even a top dressing of soil. I hope to get this done early tomorrow while we have some sunshine. Its supposed to get up in the 80’s this week, and that is welcome news for the tomatoes, peppers and brussel sprouts I started in mid-March.
They are looking pretty healthy and ready for some sunshine. I went low tech with my plant markers, toothpicks and packing tape.
I also got some specialty tomatoes from Heirloom Tomato Farms on May 4. My friend Deb and I headed to a place near the stock show. They had a rather small greenhouse, but wow what variety! Unfortunately all the peppers sold quickly so habeneros are still on the list. Luckily our local garden center is open.
The tomatoes I purchased:
- Roman Candle – “Solanum Roman Candle (USDA Organic) Tomato, Solanum lycopersicum ‘Roman Candle Tomato’, is a pure-yellow, banana-shaped, paste-type fruit that is 4 to 6 inches long. 80-85 days. Meaty, good for salsas.
- Southern Nights – A dark brown to purple fruit with indeterminate growth and potato leaves is a Russian Heirloom. 80 – 85 days, beefsteak in shape.
- Zapotec – Zapotec Pleated is a funky shaped, Mexican heirloom. I’m told good for sauces, but its not a roma type tomat0, and many say they are hollow. So good for stuffing? pink/red fruit. 85 days.
Speaking of tomato sauce, I found the paste tomatos are in fact the best for cooking into sauces, and Tomato Fest has plenty of seeds to choose from. Sauce tomatoes are meaty with few seeds.
I also found this Slate article on cooking tomatos for sauces interesting. The author talks of the parent of US romas, the Italian San Marzano, where you would expect tomatoes to hail from, but in fact tomatoes have been cultivated in Mexico since at least 500 AD.
Also of note, I just realized I have a chokecherry in my backyard! Was wondering what the bush with the dainty sprigs of white flowers were!