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  • garysjordan

With Thanks to JMRusch

Updated: Sep 5

2022-09-03

As it says on the photo, this is Sheba, home of my one and only Golden Harvest Tomato plant. I took this photo after the grow-lights timed out in order to get a look at the grow lights and a really good look at the tomato crop. My best guess is still around 26 tomatoes. The bigger ones are about an inch in diameter and over half the crop are ripe enough to pick.

This is by far the largest crop I've grown since starting last January. I traded away three tomato plants with the QYO system. I had a yellow tomato plant in one of the Smart Garden-3s, and I harvested a small crop of small yellow tomatoes from it.

So what is the difference? The first difference is that the tomatoes in the Smart Garden came from Click & Grow, while the plant in Sheba is from AeroGarden. and growing in an iDOO system. Did I pollinate? Yes, I pollinated the plant in the Smart Garden. That's where the second difference comes in.

Julie speculated that her crop was small because she didn't pollinate. Smart Gardens are essentially Kratky systems. No pumps, no fans. Hand pollination is called for. You can pollinate manually, use a small fan, or shake the plant. I shook the plants in the Smart Gardens and occasionally used an AeroGarden "Be-the-Bee" vibrator.

The iDOO systems are all equipped with fans in the grow lights. I never had to pollinate the plant in Sheba because the fan did all the work for me, and still does.

The other systems I use are AeroGarden Harvests, which have pumps but no fans. I have a small, strategically placed fan blowing across three out of four of them, and the fourth benefits from the window air conditioner. That matters to my Red Fire Pepper crop, but lettuces and herbs don't care about pollen.

2022-09-04

I have so far harvested nineteen plump, ripe tomatoes from Sheba. One was a little soft and went to trash. Eleven went to salad with all the Romaine lettuce from Ranch Five and green onion from Ethel. Seven are standing by to see what meal gets prepared next. Tomorrow. I definitely counted thirteen more not-quite-ripe tomatoes still to go. I also harvested two more yellow sweet peppers from the ranches (Smart Garden-3s). The two ripest joined the salad.

I'm out of cheese and bacon for salads and sandwiches. A grocery trip is indicated. I've ordered sweet pepper seeds from Amazon - I'll plant them in a Harvest or an iDOO. Probably Phredd.

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