This year has been very bad for our tomato harvest. Out of 160 seedlings we got only 40 kilos of tomatoes. 40 kilos doesn't sound so bad, but when you compare it to last years 100 kilos it's really bad harvest. Blight ate all my plants so I decided to pull out all of my plants and poles to prepare my beds for deep digging.
Tomato pulling is one of the garden jobs I hate the most. The only worse thing is deep digging. It's a whole day job. First I have to remove all my ribbons and variety name markers. I'll examine all my ribbons, remove all bad ones and wash them. Markers will also be washed and recycled next year.
After removing all ribbons it's tomato pulling turn. The best way to get rid of sick tomato plants is burning them like Dewberry from Slavic garden did.
But when you live surrounded with forest it's not wise to burn open fire. Also in our country it's forbidden to burn weeds in period from June 1st till October 31st. That is why I dispose my sick plants in one of my compost pits.
I have 3 compost pits, one contains rabbit manure and easy rotting vegetables. Manure is used every year for my seedlings. Another pit contains hard rotting vegetables and weeds. This pit is cleaned every 5 years and I get clean soil that is used for flower planting. Third pit is located far from my garden, inside our woods. Here we dispose sick plants and branches that were removed during spring tree pruning. This pit is emptied every 10-15 years. Here we get quality forest soil. It takes long to get it but it's worth it.
My tomatoes ended in my third pit. Since it's far away I had to transport my plants in sheet.
After removing the plants comes the most tricky part. Carrying poles back home. I hate it, I hate it, I really hate it. The soil is very wet and slippery, my garden is steep and this poles are heavy and clumsy. Not to mention that because of all the rain mosquitoes are the size of elephants and very aggressive.
I have divided my pole trip in two stages.
First I carry all of them up the garden and through the small garden gate.
There I've made a small pole pit stop.
Not for the poles but for me. I can carry only 15 poles at once so I have to go up and down at least 5 times. It gets exhausting so I never carry them the whole way.
I still have one ascent before taking all my poles into our workshed. Nero is really mad because he can't be in the garden with me so he sits on the balcony watching me until I open garden doors. Then he rushes down the path to greet me. His greetings can be very dangerous, especially when you are barely standing and he comes to hug you and give you kisses.
I got all my poles to the shed and here they will dry, then I'll sand off all the dirt and paint them with Whitewash for disinfecting.
After removing all my tomatoes and most of my Borlotti beans my garden looks very empty.
I still have some carrots, peppers, lettuce and beans inside. Beans are still growing and blooming so I've harvested 2 kilos.
If my tomato harvest was bad at least we'll have enough beans stored for the winter.