I have a small obsession with perfect tomatoes. Not having one since I was in Italy last fall, I'm jonesing for them bad. As anyone who grew up with garden tomatoes in summer can tell you, the rubbery, mealy, bouncy-ball globes in the supermarkets are not tomatoes. They are inedible, horrible examples of doing science for evil.
I have managed to not kill my tomato plants so far. This is a big deal for me- I'm not naturally inclined to having a green thumb, and I have to work really hard to figure out what makes a plant happy. I think I've got all the variables right this time. Rather perplexing, but all the cherry tomatoes I started from seed got nowhere. I pulled from two batches of seeds, so it wasn't the seeds. They came up fine, but while the other plants started taking off, they stayed stunted, not growing more than a couple of inches. I tried everything, and couldn't get them to take off, and after a few months I realized they had not grown roots at all, and were just barely keeping themselves upright.
The Bradywines and the Black Krims are doing fantastic though. Every time I brush up against them or water them, the pungent bitter smell of the leaves waft up and it's heaven.
I've been jacking up the calcium content of the soil with egg shells, feeding them weekly with commercial tomato feed and the disgusting smelling liquid running off the top of the compost bucket. They love it, and they shoot up another few inches with every feeding.
I wait. I pretend to have patience.