There are times in a gardener's life when a little inspiration is needed. At least that's the case with this gardener. Maybe it was the disappointment of last summer and fall -- with the gloomy weather inhibiting the usual bounty and the marauding squirrel taking off with everything else -- but I feel like I've been in maintenance mode for awhile now. I have done what needs to be done: keeping weeds at bay, cutting back the trumpet vine and roses (which never stopped blooming) and harvesting greens (mostly arugula). But I haven't put anything new into the garden in awhile.
That's where Tomatomania comes in. I'd been posting their upcoming events on our Facebook page for awhile and, today, when they were in Encino, I made my way out there. It's hard not to be inspired when you're looking out at skads and skads of tomato seedlings. So I went a little wild and got some for the family as well. Jeff got the German Johnson (a coastal variety) for the bar garden at Big Dean's; my Mom (the traditionalist) got the Brandywine; sis and niece got the Pink Brandywine (a bit of sass added to tradition); and for my dad got the Pink Ping-Pong (just because). For myself, I got the Rose, the Purple Russian and Pineapple. As an added bonus, they were selling some organic seascape strawberry seedlings so I picked up two of those, plus some marigolds and soil amendments and bamboo sticks to support the tomatoes.
Now I can't wait to get to the garden and get them all in the ground. (Speaking of which, here are some great tips on getting the most out of those seedlings from Scott at Tomatomania.) Unfortunately, two things will make me wait: We're still experiencing cool rainy weather here in Southern California (not the best environment for tomato seedlings) and I'll be spending this week in Puerto Vallarta and want to put them in a week when I can check in a little more often (again, see Scott's tips). That's okay -- even if I have to wait a week to get these started it's nice to feel the excitement and eagerness come back. Hello Spring!