Garden Post

Well! I thought my car would make it to work, but it started crying and overheating three miles out on the freeway… limped in to the mechanic, who replaced all the hoses that needed replacing (i.e. every single heater hose in the car as they were all close to crumbling; it was time for a full coolant flush anyway) and I was granted the day off work to deal with it, wahoo! It’s like a snow day, but with oppositely inclement weather and a $200 price tag.

At any rate – I don’t have anything resembling experimental controls in my garden, but that won’t stop me from wonking out on horticulture. Also ruminations on tomato variety names and hipster gardening if you’re into that sort of thing.

Finally, finally put the last couple tomatoes into their pots tonight. I’ve got two in 18-gal “self-watering” storage totes – with “self-watering” in scare quotes because I rigged up the systems myself without much reference to reality. One has a layer of gravel separated from the dirt with shade cloth, connected with clothesline wicks; the other has a 2-gal jug from the dumpster, with wicks too, natch. The gravel one’s been in for about a week and that tomato was the only thing not to droop in this afternoon’s heat, so I’m hopeful for the future of my Momotaro in the second tote.

That’s where the hipster comes in! I have a nagging feeling that in an alternate universe where the hip, trendsetting intellectual poseurs all lived on rural acreages, growing Momotaros would be fashionable to the point of ironic condescension. I think this is because it’s a Japanese variety, and bred for optimal, unforgettable flavor (if you believe the tag), but mostly because it has a great hipster-style name. Momotaro! You could name a band after that. Not so most tomato varieties, heirloom or hybrid. Who could rock out to Stupice or Sweet Million?

I’ve been trying for the past couple weeks to figure out why tomato variety names remind me so strongly of fiddle tune names. They both smell of heritage and stories. They both have a base of standard descriptive terminology (jig, reel, purple, pear) that often gets combined with names of people or places – and of course a heavy dose of nonsense; I think the combination is what smells strongest. But I haven’t pinned it down yet. It may take a “tune or tomato?” internet quiz to get to the bottom of this…

Meanwhile, it’s bedtime. G’night!

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