This crime may be ignorance.
Well, your honour, I would not in fact see it as a total failure and therefore possibly not your actual er, crime. I have learnt so much along the way and may in fact be a better gardening citizen in future as the result of my experiences. But I need a little help with the evidence. It is not so much to determine my guilt or innocence, you see, but more my prospects of future rehabilitation. I do so want to be good.
Hmmm. Present your case then…
Well, it seemed to me that if someone were going to grow a vege, and one vege only, it would have to be a tomato. Everyone grows tomatoes. Every second house has tomatoes peeking over the back fence. They must be easy to grow.
Ah, yes. But I’ve grown tomatoes from seedlings before – and they worked ok, I even had some ripe fruit. Growing them from seed didn’t seem such a huge leap, and sowing them a couple of months later than is usual didn’t seem that big a deal.
Sown late you say?
But they grew! Tiny little seedlings emerged, so I put them in tiny little pots. Then I put them in not quite so tiny little pots when that didn’t seem quite sensible. But not really big pots, and um, not in the ground either.
Pots too small eh?
But I’ve awful soil. And the ducks would have pulled the seedlings up to see what was underneath them.
What? Well, never mind that, what happened next?
My lovely little seedling were starting to produce buds, so I carefully moved them to somewhere well protected from the wind. I did a little reading and was careful never to let them dry out. I popped into Amy’s blog at ‘Go Away I’m Gardening’ and noted that mulch was important. I mulched my pots. I even gave them the best of the worm tea and lavished attention upon them. I showed them off on my blog.
Yes? And then?
A kind blogger (thanks Meredith 😉 )pointed out that it might be a good idea to move them out of their lovely sheltered spot into the breeze if I hoped for them to be pollinated one day.
Right, well, did it work?
Yes – not only that, but they were visited by blue-banded bees, our native buzz pollinators and friend of the tomato grower.
That sounds promising, but a bit more like luck than good planning!
Er. Got me there Gov. But tiny little fruit emerged! The most perfectly round pea sized tomatoes, wearing tiny hats that came to long green points…making them look like the dearest and most precious things in the world!
Stop this irrelevant rambling at once! Well, you say they produced fruit?
Yes, lovely they were….um, sorry. Yes, little green tomatoes soon became the size of my thumb then my toe. More flowers appeared, a few side shoots. did take off a couple of those. But some of them already had dear little flowers on, and I didn’t have the heart…
Mmm. Side shoots huh? Well, then what?
Well it got quite cold for a couple of days. Then it got quite hot again a few days later. I worried that my tomatoes might get burnt so I moved their pots off the grass back to shelter. I did notice that most of the pots had little white roots that tore a little when I picked them up…
Hot then cold then hot? Doesn’t sound right. what’s it like now?
it was mild for a while, but now it is getting cooler by the day. And wetter.
And the tomatoes?
Green. Green. Green. Green. The initial fruit hasn’t changed much in a month…but there are still some flowers! And the tomatoes are so pretty, just like they have been hand painted…
The rest of the plant seems to be dying and no amount of worm tea seems to be helping.
I just can’t face saying goodbye.
Please, your honours, I ask you to be the judge. What are my chances? What have I missed?
Will you give me another chance next year?