Tomato Garden Regrets and Another Sunset Book Giveaway!

Tomato Talk

So I got all excited about tomatoes this spring, especially after attending a TomatoMania worship session at a local nursery. It was late-March, and the sponsors were telling all of us spring-feverish shoppers to buy, buy, buy seedlings and plant them in our gardens as soon as possible. I should have listened to Mr. Tomato, who said don’t bother planting them until June.  But I’m impatient, and after returning all high on tomato love after TomatoMania,  I sunk them into the chilly ground right after I got home. My plants are still alive, but were thrashed by recent rains and winds. They have grown a little, but you can tell they are holding out for the big heat. Since they haven’t seen the sun in about a week, they also are getting some funky black fungus. I’m so bummed! (Mr. Tomato recommended a natural mildew buster called Natria.)

planting tomatoes


What I understand about tomatoes, however, is that they most likely will recover and thrive anyway, as long as the sun decides to return this summer. But I thought I would give them a little boost for their long-suffering. I should have worked in this fertilizer when I planted them in my garden, but I thought my soil was rich enough.   I was wrong (are you surprised?) and they are hungry. To give them a type of fertilizer IV, I mixed up some Dr. Earth with water, soaked it overnight and dosed my plants today with some  “tea.” I can hear them moaning with gratitude already.

 (Both Mr. Tomato and the TomatoMania boosters were spot on recommending Dr. Earth fertilizer. The “tea” recipe was on the bag.)

raising tomatoes

 Sunset Garden Cookbook Giveaway Contest

My tomato blunder gave me an idea for my current book giveaway. (Sunset magazine asked me again to help give away another of their new books, and I’m happy to pass along the freebies. I got to give away five of  The New Western Garden Book: The Ultimate Gardening Guide (Sunset Western Garden Book  about a month ago. Click HERE if you missed that post.) To win one of  The Sunset Edible Garden Cookbook: Fresh, Healthy Cooking from the Garden books, please send in one of your favorite recipes that includes a tomato or two. The simpler, the better. I’m expecting bushels of tomatoes  from my garden this summer and just might run out of ideas on easy ways to prepare them. The winners will be selected based on what recipes sound the best to me, and I will share them when I announce the winners on Mother’s Day, May 13.

I probably don’t need to mention that this book would make a nifty Mother’s Day gift!

Contest rules:

If you won the previous contest, you can’t enter this one. (Let’s spread the love!) You must be 18 or older to win. Please leave the name of the tomato-involved recipe you are submitting in the comment box for this post, but e-mail the actual recipe to me at my email address: I hope this isn’t too complicated. Tell your friends!

If you don’t like contests but want to order the recipe book, click the link below to find it on Amazon:

The Sunset Edible Garden Cookbook: Fresh, Healthy Cooking from the Garden

3 thoughts on “Tomato Garden Regrets and Another Sunset Book Giveaway!

  1. Our Seattle like weather has made me worry about my Tomato Mania purchases too. Today I gave my toms a boost too.

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