Well, the clock is ticking rapidly towards November 1st, and it looks like I’ve barely made a dent into processing batches of tomatoes — which were harvested in October — for seed saving.
Every single decent-sized (1 gallon or larger) solid container I have has been filled with tomatoes at some stage of processing. I’ve resorted to using gallon freezer bags placed inside of pots to hold batches of tomatoes for fermenting.
Finding time to do “Fall cleanup” of the garden is absolutely out of the question. But I have a crew, or rather several crews of deer that are cleaning up the tomato patch, little by little, as many as nine deer at time, with small herds spending as much as two hours straight, gorging themselves on the leftover, frozen tomatoes. It’s been challenging for me to refrain from chasing them off – something I’ve been doing for months, mostly in the middle of the night.
They have pretty much ripped down the deer fencing along the south edge of the garden patch, so even for the youngest deer, it’s an easy hop in and out. They are getting bolder by the day, often starting their forays in the late afternoon, and continuing off and on all night long. On the bright side, at least I’m sleeping better, not stressing out about the damage they might be causing.
So many beautiful, tasty, and interesting tomato varieties sampled this year. Loads of photos, descriptions, and recommendations to share. But the battle now is against exhaustion, and against tomatoes rotting before I get a chance to sample them or take decent photos.
Here are just a few teasers —
Apologies in advance for delays with getting seeds out, but I WILL get to them, just not as quickly as usual. Lately, I’ve been sending out seed requests just once a week, rather than the more typical frequency of 3-4 times per week. It’s just the nature of this beast — a very BIG bite this year, seeming, at times, to be more than I can handle. Best get at least a little sleep.
= = = = = = = = = = =
Recent minor snowstorm, followed by 15.3°F temperature. Deer have pretty much cleaned up all but the tiny tomatoes from the main tomato patch. Now they are working on the extra vines that are still in 3.5″ pots – those seedlings that never found a home, but many still managed to send roots into the ground and produce some tomatoes. They have been covered with row cover fabric, but the deer pretty much ripped that to shreds, so I removed it. Following video was taken from 20′ away with the aid of a headlamp. They are so bold, at least when I move slowly and remain quiet!