Last year we watched the tomatoes ripen on a neighbor's deck and I thought, ho. Hadn't realized we got enough sun and warmth here to grow tomatoes but maybe I could add some tomatoes to the mix of herbs and flowers I currently grow on the deck.
The die was cast when we were in a nursery and saw six-packs of begonias that had volunteer tomatoes growing in them. Two six-packs of begonias. Three "free" tomato plants. The two tomato cages were picked up for free on the sidewalk down by Union and Cadell Place where someone had left five for first-takers. I bought pots. Pots are reusable. I bought bags of potting mix. Also reusable. I potted my tomato plants and began the adventure.
Net cost $0 except for the cost of water.
One pot's contents turned out to be cherry tomatoes. So far I've got two cherry tomatoes off the plant. Something four-footed seems to get to the tomatoes before I feel they're ripe enough.
The two plants with large tomatoes? So far all of the tomatoes have met the fate of this one.
Sometimes the entire almost-ripe tomato disappears overnight. Sometimes just part of it, but the rest disappears soon enough.
We're talking either roof rats -- possible, although they've been nowhere to be seen for four years, since the cat moved in -- or raccoons -- more possible because they know their way up five stories of spiral metal stairs. The Guy says it could also be parrots, nibbling during the day and we just don't check the tomatoes before we go to bed. Whoever is doing this, boy, do they make a mess, spattering tomato juices on the wall behind the pots.
No deck-grown tomatoes next year. Farmers' market at the Ferry Building will be my tomato source instead.
Was worth a try.