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Not sure when this tomato challenge started, but it has grown (pun intended) into a friendly competition.  For that last several years, my brother and I race to see who can produce the first tomato and have a fruitful harvest during the summer season.

This year was no different.  I do have a bit of a disclaimer, I started earlier than I said I would.  But, I didn’t mean to.  Usually, I plant my tomatoes in late April.  I wait to make sure the cold frosty mornings are over.  I was talking with Johnny in March and said I wasn’t going to plant until the late April time frame.  However, this year has been a bit different.  The rain and consistent cold weather of Spring ended early.  I happened to be at the store and saw tomato plants.  I thought why not plant early and see what happens.  He would say I cheated, but I didn’t really intend to plant so early, it just happened by accident.

Where I plant my tomatoes, they get full sun all day long.  Where my brother lives, he doesn’t have a great place for planting in full sun.  So, he found a huge planter and placed it in the sunniest spot in his backyard, which still didn’t have great sun.  We never discussed “harvesting” sunlight, but he decided it wasn’t outside the rules to install mirrors behind his plants to harvest more sunlight.  In addition, he put his planter on a rotating base, so he could make sure the whole plant was receiving equal sunlight.  Not, to mention, he had some unapproved “top secret” fertilizer.  I just used plain old dirt and water.  I don’t rotate my plants.  I just water them.

The bottom line is, I got the first tomato of the season!  However, I do realize that while I had the first tomato, he is more likely to have the last.  Last year his tomato season didn’t end till November!

Above all this tomato slinging, we both win.   We both get fresh, home-grown tomatoes cultivated with love.

Blog_FriendlyCompetition_June2014Blueprint:  Tathra Beach Morning

Little Feet Digital Designs:  Up-Lifting Frames and Overlays Series 1

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7 Responses to Blog: A Friendly Competition

  1. Safeway tomatoes – no way! Kim, great blog. Think I’ll go out and check on how our tomatoes are doing!

  2. Linda Lauer says:

    Great story! I luv your page Kim but how did you make the 3 pics on a strip like that? The set of uplifting frames did not seem to have any frames with dividers. Can you use any frame? Thanks!

    • Kim says:

      Hi Linda,

      The page I used was a blueprint called Tathra Beach Morning. To make a photo strip, you would insert a long rectangle and then put the photo holders on top.

  3. Anne says:

    You know that I am loving this blog about growing tomatoes! So proud that you can get them to grow so quickly. I planted 6 this year and discovered one reason that ours in the past didn’t do well. While standing in line at Home Depot, I started talking to a couple who turned out to be farmers. When I told them that I wasn’t having much luck growing tomatoes – he asked if I was using “city water.” When I said yes, he told me that city water was the problem. Hopefully I’ll be doing a blog showing off our tomatoes in July!

  4. Carolyn says:

    Oh, Kim. What a terrific story! So glad you shared it. I love that Johnny is industrious enough to add mirrors and a rotating mechanism. I have to admit that I’ve been envious of your California sun for your garden on more than one occasion.

  5. Penny says:

    Kim, I loved your story and your fun page! I can just imagine my younger brother and I having a competition like that. He would install mirrors, too. Is your brother older or younger than you? I am envious of your homegrown tomatoes – nothing like them at the store.

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