RE: [tomato] zone 7

Thomas Giannou (
Sun, 27 Jan 2002 13:03:54 -0800


Last year, I brought in one tomato plant and about six pepper plants at
frost time.  The tomato plant was a "big beef" tomato.  I didn't
particularly care for the flavor of that tomato, but before we harvested the
last of the tomatoes off that plant I sprayed some compost tea around the
base of the plant.  In about a week, the texture and flavor of those
tomatoes really improved.  The function of this particular version of
compost tea is to activate the soils around the roots of the plant and to
provide aerobic microbes which transform minerals and organic material into
a form of nutrients readily received by plants.  The effect in a week after
applying that tea was an improvement in texture and a big jump in flavors.

That tomato plant and the peppers have been growing all winter long and
should be in good shape to put outside by the time the warm weather starts
up again.

I also grew some better boy's last year.  They started ripening in the
middle of my season here... about mid August.  They had good flavor...
certainly better than anything in the local stores, but other varieties were
better... celebrity for example was prolific, nice sized and good in flavor.
Most of my tomato plants produced 50+ fruit last year and it sure was
refreshing to eat lots of fresh tomatoes, peppers, onions, raspberries,
strawberries and cap the season off with lots of fresh grapes.  I haven't
felt that good in years!  I'm going to expand my container gardening method
this year with more plants.

All the microbes in the products I use, have processed the potting soils I
mixed up last year into a nice rich humus material which I will amend again
with my Living Soil Amendment.  I started with a potting soil that had
composted wood fines, peat moss, and sand and mixed that with about 50%
Black Gold potting soil by volume.  I amended that with our Living Soil
Amendment.  No other fertilizers are needed.

I have found an interesting soaker hose system that is made by Colorite
Plastics company.  They drop a 1/4 soaker hose off a drip line through a
valve.  The hose can circle the Tomato plant and the water can be left on 24
hrs a day to keep the soil moist, but not soggy.  The valve can be adjusted
to cause the flow to be set quite low.  I used drippers last year and left
them on all the time, but found I needed to shut them off from time to
time... too much water.  That 1/4" soaker hose looks like a better way to
water my container plants.

Best Regards,
Thomas Giannou - Home of BioVam Mycorrhiza

-----Original Message-----
[]On Behalf Of Doreen Howard
Sent: Sunday, January 27, 2002 11:19 AM
Subject: Re: [tomato] zone 7

Glenn Sutherland wrote:
>uh, nothing fancy
>Better Boys, and 10-10-10

Doreen Howard wrote:
Big Beef (the only hybrid I'd recommend)--has a nice flavor, big cropper and
disease tolerant