Easy to Grow
Tomatoes are one of my favorite frugal gardening fruit. Every year I plant several tomato plants to secure a good canning season of chili.
One habit I have that usually wrecks my gardening adventures is forgetting to water the plants. Thankfully, tomatoes are a lot like zucchini and durable.
In year’s like this one where we experience a lack of rain, tomatoes still do well. As along as they have sun and a good watering every other day they will survive.
Easy Canning Recipes
I remember trying to learn how to can from a cookbook. Every recipe seemed very daunting. One recipe looked easy, and it was how I learned to can tomatoes.
I followed up with a lady from a 4h extension office at the fair and she gave me a few pointers. One of her remarks was that “tomatoes are a great way to learn canning”. This lady went on to say they were easy to can, but could spoil quickly if not processed correctly. Ten years’ later I still can tomatoes for chili and salsa.
In past year’s I have been able to can large amounts of tomatoes. Large batches of canning can take several days, but using my food processor helped me to get a system. Lately, tomatoes have been ripening a lot later than they used to ripen. This has pushed my canning season into September and previously it was August.
Tomatoes are Low Maintenance
Tomatoes grown from seeds can be plentiful. The right spot in the garden is key. Sunny, good dirt, few weeds and a little water will yield a good tomato season.
A few year’s ago, I placed my tomato seeds in a new spot in the garden. This was prior to my learning how to plan my garden and I just played a guessing game every year. Guessing where to put my plants was a bad idea.
Soon, I noticed they were not thriving as usual. After watching them for several days, the problem arose. My tomatoes were in shade for one half of the day. A tree that had been planted year’s before had grown. Me, not paying attention missed an important part of planting that year. Usually from 5-6 plants I will get almost 12 jars of tomatoes. My mistake cost me jars of tomatoes. Side note: Always pay attention to what each vegetable or fruit needs to grow.
My canning season is one of the ways that I am able to save on our grocery bill, so a good crop of tomatoes is important. By freezing and canning tomatoes I can save when the price goes up in the grocery stores.
More Than One Way to Grow Tomatoes
These hardy plants can be grown anywhere. Great for use with beginner gardeners’ in the city, on a homestead, apartment or container.
This year I tried to grow tomatoes in a container, and the one that I did plant in the container grew very tall, but I had placed in an unproductive spot.
After replanting in the garden this year, my future container gardening will be preceded by more research. Most tomato plants grow very well in window boxes or plants.
Trial and error are the biggest factors in successful frugal gardening adventures.