I have tomatoes growing on two plants on my deck. Now. In October. They are actually growing leaves and forming tomatoes and flowers and it is October 21st. Both plants are the cherry variety.
One of these plants, ‘Gardener’s Delight‘, I grew from seed, sown in April.
The other plant was a rescued tomato plant. The variety was ‘Sugary‘. I bought it in 2006 in July. It was one of those fried-looking little 4-packs you get for next to nothing at the nursery at that time of year. (They should be free!) I took pity on it.
Tomato seedlings impress me with their doggedness. They just keep on going no matter how much they’ve been abused and neglected. These ones plucked heavily at my heartstrings, and before I knew it I was picking them off the tray and saving them from the compost heap.
I figured we had a few months of summer left so what the hell. I could give these little guys a chance.
One small step for woman. One giant leap for tomato.
Well, I did stick them in pots, and they lived and grew. They didn’t thrive exactly, but one plant did stay alive. I kept it in a pot for the rest of the summer, and as it was still growing, I brought it into my front porch where it spent the winter of 2006-2007.
It struggled through the winter, then in February had a new lease on life and formed tiny tomatoes, like little pear-shaped jewels. They were a particularly scrumptious variety so I figured I’d keep it going as long as I could. I think I actually ate 2 tomatoes from this plant. A home grown tomato from your own plant in the dying throes of winter is a pretty amazing thing, even if it is only a biteful.
This summer, after getting very leggy and somewhat neglected, I repotted it and brought it up to my deck. High hopes. It slogged though August, made lots of leaves, and now in October it’s covered with little green pear-shaped fruit. Maybe I won’t get to see all of them ripen on the vine, but just to see them there, growing outside my kitchen door in October is quite a thrill.
Hence the bragging.