Saturday, August 15, 2009

Moving Plants and other nonsense

I brought a full sized (ie 5 gallon pot) tomato plant with me to the coast. This is partially because I have come here at the wrong time in terms of my garden in Calgary. The plant had green fruit but alas nothing even a California exporter would consider shipping. If you've read yesterday's post you know I have come here at the right time - it is freezing cold there and nice and warm here. Anyway I brought this full and "giant" plant in the back of  the car with a dog and a cat and an assortment of other plants that just really weren't working in Calgary - a miniature rose and a chi-chi 'Chiffon Blue' Hibiscus. 

But back to the tomato - I was imagining ripe fruit on this plant I  had started from seed in mid-March, transplanted twice as it grew and watered carefully with tepid water on alternating days. Ever the optomist I didn't want the fruit to be ripe in Calgary when I was on the coast so I dutifully put it out by the car and my very patient husband dutifully loaded it into the car. "Wrap it in newspaper" , I suggested, "to keep the leaves from being crushed if the cat decides he would rather ride in the back".

The Proven Winner's Chiffon Blue Hibiscus came to me free last summer as a trial plant shipped to Calgary. It was a "new for 2009" plant and of course - by summer's end - I was reading rave reviews about the fabulous blooms -written by every single garden writer in Toronto - even as my plant was barely getting its second leaf.  I  was fed up with my loser plant and ready to throw it away when I saw it was dead this spring. Too bad, so sad, I thought as I ripped it out to make room for the next winner-  and then - there is was - a small bud of life at the base of the plant and it was only June 25th! 

Chiffie was alive. Clearly I had to pot it, carefully adding compost to the soil, and hold it over until our departure. I had to shelter it from hail and heavy storms and by August it was rewarding me with three or four leaves!  I knew it was destined to come with us to the coast. At this size it couldn't possibly tolerate another prairie winter. 

The three amigos arrived here in good shape and one of the jobs I had to do this week was plant them in their new locations. Not their final locations, mind you, since I need to make sure they are watered and deer free for at least a season. Well- what am I saying - no matter what I do that tomato is doomed in the next 60 days even in Canada's Hawaii. Lets just say all three plants were given a second chance in the vegetable garden which of course make sense for the tomato but the other two? What they don't know won't hurt them. 

No comments: