The Walden Effect: Farming, simple living, permaculture, and invention.

Tomato blight and seed saving

Tomato seed saving setupIt's never a good idea to hide things from your spouse, but I'd been keeping something from Mark.  When he tossed a half-rotten tomato to the chickens, the truth came spewing out.

"You can't give tomatoes like that to the chickens," I admonished him.

"There was barely anything left," my sweet husband explained.  "Just a bite for each of us."

Fermenting tomato seeds"No, you don't understand," I said.  "I'll cut off bad spots.  Any tomato is precious.  You see, the blight has struck."

I knew that our tomatoes had a high likelihood of contracting the blight this year even though I planted them on the far opposite side of the garden from last year's tomato patch and pruned them heavily to promote air movement.  Once the blight is in the air, you tend to see symptoms the next year no matter what you do.  The trick is to be proactive and stay ahead of the disease.

Homemade pizza sauceI could have dusted my tomatoes with copper and prevented the blight, but this "organic" treatment seems too harsh for my garden.  Instead, I plan to yank out the worst plants and cut off diseased leaves as soon as we have a day dry enough to make it safe to work in the tomato patch.  Meanwhile, I picked a bowlful of ripe fruits to save tomato seeds for next year.

What do you do with a bowlful of gutless tomatoes?  Make pizza sauce of course!  That pizza I've been craving for the last few months really hit the spot.

Our homemade chicken waterer prevents heartbreak in the coop --- no more heat exhaustion during blazing summer days.

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About us: Anna Hess and Mark Hamilton spent over a decade living self-sufficiently in the mountains of Virginia before moving north to start over from scratch in the foothills of Ohio. They've experimented with permaculture, no-till gardening, trailersteading, home-based microbusinesses and much more, writing about their adventures in both blogs and books.

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You've just given me an idea what to make for dinner tomorrow!

I do love self made pizza. :-P

Comment by Roland_Smith Fri Jul 30 14:49:53 2010
...has to be one of the world's best dinners. :-)
Comment by anna Fri Jul 30 15:49:15 2010

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