Okay, I confess. I don’t like blogging. Even the word blog reminds me of some 1950s sci-fi monster that came from outer-space and would eat unsuspecting people who were stupid enough to open the door in the middle of the night to see what that weird noise was. I mean really; didn’t they hear the scary music?

But, from all the marketing articles I have read, I am assured by said experts that if I blog, it will increase the number of visits to my website and the sale of my books. I can’t understand why talking about 1950s blog monsters would make people want to buy a book, but who am I to question experts?

So, in an effort to begin…blogging…there I said it, I am birthing a blog with the following thoughts.

Tomatoes.

One of my favorite foods, next to chocolate. [Yes, chocolate is one of the four food groups.] I love all types and sizes of tomatoes, from the tiny sweet 100s to grape to cherry to the slicing beefsteak, Bigger Boy, Early Girl and even those with interesting names like Pink Caspians. I don’t care what color they are, yellow, green, pink, red, or even black – the Black Krim are delicious! – if it’s a fresh tomato, I’ll eat it.

Price doesn’t matter to me; tomatoes can be over $3 a pound and I’ll buy them. I mean, can you imagine a BLT without the luscious thick slice of T? Or a taco without the red juiciness of chopped tomatoes? Or a Southern dinner of fried chicken, stewed potatoes, and cornbread without the tangy taste of a quartered tomato? As far as I’m concerned, a salad without a tomato is just lettuce.

Deliciously sweet cascading Cherries Jubilee tomatoes

And when it comes to home-grown tomatoes, I say the more the merrier. If we have nothing else in our garden, we have tomatoes. Because I couldn’t wait for spring, this time last year I started heirloom tomato seeds indoors. Every day, I would tip-toe into the guest room, where my baby seeds were snuggled under their blanket of rich potting soil, so see if anything had changed. I think I scared the socks off hubby Mike the day I came screaming out of the room, announcing that we had seedlings about 1/32nd of an inch long.

While I waited for the last frost date to come, I read everything I could on gardening. Did I want another traditional garden in the back of our property or did I want to try a new fangled style of gardening? After boring Mike to death and interrupting the Super Bowl twice – I’ll never do that again – I decided that I would try container gardening for my ‘maters.

According to my mother-in-law, a country-bred woman who can make anything grow, in the South, it is safe to plant your garden after Good Friday. So, shortly before Easter, Mike and I took off to our local home improvement center to buy what we needed for our experimental garden. We bought ten large blue plastic containers – I had wanted green or brown, but blue was all that was available – a dozen bags of peat moss, and a dozen bags of potting soil. I had been composting all winter [I’ll save that for another blog] in expectation of spring gardening, so I was all ready.

Unusual color, but the Black Krim is wonderful!

We chose a spot on the corner of our patio that got full sunlight all day for our container garden. Mike drilled 1-inch holes all over the bottom of the containers and then we filled them with a mixture of equal amounts of potting soil, peat moss, and compost. Then I carefully planted my baby tomato plants in the mixture, sprinkled water around the stems, and waited.

Long story short, we had amazing tomatoes. The plants grew over 6 feet tall and produced delicious fruit. Since they were heirlooms, I harvested seeds from each type to store for the next season. [By the way, this type of gardening had an added blessing of almost no weeds; I think we pulled less than 50 weeds from the ten containers over the whole growing season.] Before the first frost of fall, we harvested what was left on the plants and left them to ripen on a shelf. I am proud to say that we still have 3 tomatoes that are slowly ripening. I am already checking with the experts as to when our last freeze date will be in anticipation of when to plant the seeds for this season.

So, now I’ve written my first blog. I hope you’ve enjoyed it and I’m anxious to see what the results from it will be. But now I must go slice some tomatoes for supper; we’re having BLTs.