Sunday, May 10, 2009

Getting the Garden Started

I went to the Corvallis Farmer's Market yesterday and bought some starters for my garden.

My primary objective was tomatoes. Last year I had three cherry tomato plants that sprawled all over my garden and smothered one of my jalapeno plants. They also produced more tomatoes than I could eat, and since they couldn't be reasonably peeled, their culinary options were limited. This year I decided not to buy any cherry tomatoes, only plum tomatoes. I bought 3 types: Prince Borghese, Roma, and San Marzano.

These plants are determinate, which means they bear fruit once and are harvested all at once, whereas the cherry tomatoes produced continuously until first frost. I suspect this means that they are also less like to sprawl, but I put them in cages just in case.

My next priority was jalapenos. Last year I had two plants, one was overrun by the tomato plant. The other produce tasty peppers, but they were not hot. My hypothesis is that it was because they didn't get enough sun and got too much water. This year I plan to plant them on the west side of the house between the trees of the espalier.

Unfortunately, nobody had any jalapeno plants for sale yet, but I bought a santaka pepper plant on a whim.

I also got an eggplant, basil, and broccoli (and/or cauliflower - I thought I was getting a pack of 3 brocs and 3 caulis, but it wasn't clear)

Beside the vegetables, I also got a wisteria plant. This was on the advice of JoAnne (Chris' mom) who was visiting last week. She suggested that it would be a good vining plant to cover the pergola on our patio.