tomato display

Here are the ten varieties of tomatoes that are currently ripe. I nearly had some yellow brandywine to add to the picture, but I didn’t see the first two that ripened and they disintegrated in place. There was another close to being pickable, but it could use another day I think, so I left it for tomorrow.

I don’t know what I was thinking when I planted 21 tomato plants. I guess I wasn’t thinking. Or maybe I thought they wouldn’t all survive. Or that the tomato fruitworm would wipe them out.

I’ve decided that I should plan a “pick your own” tomato party. Give the folks a little wine (or better yet, a lot), let them taste some tomatoes, and then send them out to the garden. I could even lock them in until they pick every last one, since I went to the trouble to build a really high and really strong deer fence. But that would only help for a day. There would be more tomatoes ripe the next morning. And on second thought, maybe it would just be more effective to drink the wine myself and forget about the tomatoes.

I have a feeling I will soon be desperate to get rid of tomatoes. The first inkling of this came today. Our road is currently being repaved, so there was a line of cars stopped in view of my garden, waiting to get waved passed the construction. I looked down at my big basket of tomatoes and then up at the line of cars. Down, up. Down, up.

I almost went out to the street to start handing out tomatoes to the stranded motorists.

But then two thoughts kept me from doing it. First, I imagined people rolling up their windows and locking their doors and pretending not to see me. That would hurt. And maybe the rejection would make me a tad frustrated and angry, and maybe I would start throwing tomatoes at them. It could happen.

Second, I imagined turning on the five o’clock news and seeing a “human interest story” (because there are no real news stories here) about the crazy lady, sweating and disheveled*, forcing her tomatoes on strangers. I would be interviewed, and they would ask me “Why did you plant so many tomatoes”, and I would have no answer. What could I say? It IS a reasonable question. I would probably just start to cry if they asked me that.

At the moment I’m not quite that desperate, but give me another week and I just might be able to report how the motorists responded.

*I firmly believe there really is no point in spending any time grooming before you go out to pick your garden, especially when it is 96 degrees F and your tomato plants are planted so close together that you have to become intimate with them in order to extricate the tomatoes.

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