Growing tomatoes in the northwest is always cause for celebration. This year, with a record-breaking wet spring and a chilly start to summer, we decided to really celebrate our first ripe tomato.
And we literally only have one ripe tomato at this point. I hope to have a lot more, but this good-sized, bright yellow Limmony was the first to cross the finish line.
To really do it justice, I made a balsamic reduction, bought some smoked mozzarella, and harvested some basil to go on top. Now I really hope we get a lot more tomatoes. We found a little blossom end rot in the community garden that we’re trying to nip in the bud. It’s important to celebrate the small successes!
We’re starting to dabble a little more in container gardening this year. We do most of our gardening in raised beds, which I suppose is gardening in containers on a larger scale. But hey, containers are expensive. I’d like to have all sorts of ’em all over our house and yard, but we’re going to have to acquire a little at a time. We got to venture out to the port of Tacoma to shop for some good quality pots recently at Bamford & Bamford.
We found some of the brightest colors we could. My only disappointment was I was really hoping for something in orange. That’s okay, because I decided to turn some $5 tubs from Target into gardening containers and found bright orange and kelly green.
Five dollars for giant 19 gallon tubs in cute bright colors, with little rope handles! All I had to do was drill some holes. I really liked this idea for adding caster wheels to the bottom. I checked 3 or 4 stores for them and ultimately decided the high cost would take away the great deal I was getting on these containers.
Then Levi helped me with the most gigantic block of coconut coir I’ve ever seen.
I knew he would be on board if I let him spray the hose.
Then we mixed the coir with our garden mix (50% mushroom compost, 50% topsoil) in hopes that these smaller containers won’t get compacted.
We used up some of our river rocks under the pots for drainage.
And a layer on the bottom inside the containers as well.
And in go the artichokes.
I’m testing out one artichoke in these rather generous sized pots.
And I’m trying three in the big 19 gallon tubs. Baby steps toward a nicer looking yard. And if you can’t tell, I do have high hopes for these artichokes.