Thursday, April 23, 2015

Journal April 23, 2015 - Autopots operational

The Autopot self watering planters are operational, at least for the tomatoes.  This season I have elected to use only plain water in the reservoir,  manually feeding nutrients to the plants via top watering weekly.  

Over the seasons I have found that adding nutrients to the reservoir will, as the season wears on, cause the lines to clog.  The nutrient laden liquid remains in the lines when the valves are closed, which allows some nutrients to settle out, accumulating and eventually clogging the lines.

All of the varieties of tomatoes are doing fantastically in my "homebrewed" soil mix.  My concern was that the mix would be difficult to water from the bottom because of the sand, however that has not been the case.

The damn New York weather has turned cold again, with nights near, or close to freezing.  Today, there were actually snow flurries blowing in the breeze.  In spite of that, the tomatoes are still growing, but slowly.  I can see flowers forming on a few of the Tropic tomatoes that have been planted in the Autopots.  That said, there is a big difference in the size of the plants that are in the Autopots and those uppotted to 4" pots,  with the plants in the Autopots being much larger.

The cucumbers intended for the greenhouse have been started, growing indoors under LED grow lights.  The problem being, that due to the cold weather, all of the olive trees are back in the greenhouse, along with the garden plants.  

Added to that, Ava has decided that she wants a garden at her house, so to encourage her interest in gardening we started cucumbers, zinnias and marigolds for her garden.  We also purchased a cedar raised bed for her, which we will install as soon as the weather permits.

Ava's interest in gardening did not come as a surprise, as she has been my assistant since she was an infant, and has she has alwasys taken a great deal of interest in how plants develop.  Sorry to say, but neither of her parents have any interest in gardening;  Ava must have inherited her gardening genes from her grandfather. 

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