Tuesday, June 3, 2008

Suckerin' 'Maters

I've been suckering tomatoes -- cutting off the little shoots that grow up everywhere a branch comes off the main stem of the tomato plant. Left to its own devices, a tomato plant will turn into a jungle of greenery, sprawling lushly over the ground in multi-stemmed abundance. But the problem is, in the soil (or, at least, in our soil) are spores of various tomato blights which can kill a plant before it ever bears fruit. So we sucker and trellis our 'maters, keeping them well off the ground and providing lots of room for the air to circulate, in hopes of staving off the blight till the tomatoes have produced a good crop.

It's not a bad job. And after running a hoe through the garden and adding another tier of baling twine to the trellis, I'm quite happy to sit down and scoot along on my bottom, cutting off the tender sucker shoots and mounding the loose dirt around each stem. When it's all done and the garden is tidy once again, it's a wonderful feeling -- order out of chaos, just like a mystery novel.

One of my email buddies asked last night when I did my writing -- did I have a set time -- so many hour or words every day?

The answer is no -- sometimes the demands of life have to come first. In the summer, the only time I can count on for writing is now -- the time between supper and bed -- however long I can manage to stay awake.
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Pat in east TN said...

Suckerin' 'maters will be my job tomorrow. My entire garden was quite tidy after working it in all yesterday afternoon ... what a sense of accomplishment!!! My garden is doing extremely well so far ... we've gotten little rain but have heavy morning dew, almost like a shower passed through. That is what carried us through last year and looks like it so far this year.

Vicki Lane said...

It's a righteous feeling -- working hard enough to be dirty and sweat-soaked and then to come inside and bathe and wash your hair and sit, as I am, with a fan blowing cool air on your slightly sunburned self.

Susan M. Bell said...

My friend Alessa brought me two tomato plants yesterday. I don't have a place in my yard where I can plant them, the one clear spot being above our recently placed drain field. So, they are going to be grown in 5-gallon buckets. Not much I know, but I am hopeful. Wish me luck. :-)

Vicki Lane said...

Ought to work -- you should be able to lavish attention on them.