Earlier this month we started planting tomato and other vegetable seeds for our vegetable garden. We got a little planter box and happily planted our seeds expecting outstanding results. After all, how hard can it be right? We grow weeds all over the backyard without any effort. Surely this can’t be much harder.
A week later the first seedlings started popping up and happiness ensued. We were on our way. This had to be the hardest part, to get them to actually surface, I thought. Another week went by and they kept growing. I was religiously putting the boxes out during daytime for maximum sunlight and taking them back inside overnight, to avoid the frost getting to them. All was great. Time was now our only obstacle. Soon enough we’d have tons of tomato plants and we were already making plans to give some of them away, once they matured some more. We did after all have so many and couldn’t possibly keep them all.
About a week after this, I started noticing some of the plants mysteriously dying. After further research it turned out that they had been attacked by some sort of fungus and apparently needed more air circulation to thrive. With about a quarter of the seedlings gone, victims of the killer fungus death, I now started being more careful. I took the lid of the box at night, but kept it on during the day. My weeds never needed this much care.
The game of Tomato Survivor continued.
Yesterday, the weather was great. Sunny and warm. I put the boxes out, covered, in the sunlight where they’d been the previous days. But this time, at the end of the day, I opened the lid and to my dismay all but one single seedling were dead. And the sole survivor was on life support. Once again I opened my gardening book to find that direct sunlight could harm the fragile seedlings. So, between being eaten by fungus and burned alive, my tomatoes had very little hope to make it in the real world.
I find that in some situations reading the instruction manual after the fact can be ok. Like, when putting together IKEA furniture. When doing so dealing with living things, it most definitely will equal death.