time for you to toughen up

My seedlings have taken over my life.  They are big.  They are thirsty. They are demanding.  They fight with their neighbors.  It takes an hour just to organize them everyday and get them watered (which is a bit of my fault because I water them from the bottom to avoid creating a breeding ground for gnats and I started the seeds about two weeks too early).  Regardless of who the blame lies with, they need to go in the ground.  I am moving up my transplant date from the 17 to the 8.  I cannot handle them being here for another 11 days.  I know it is risky, but what is life without a little risk?

To prepare the seedlings for the big day and life in the real world, they have to be hardened off.  This is accomplished by exposing the plants gradually to “real” sunlight (no more of that cushy soft fluorescent light) and reducing the amount of water they receive.  The plants should also get used to wind to strengthen their stems and avoid problems with breakage. Easy enough I guess (although I am still grumbling about it…).

Hopefully, I will manage not to kill any of the seedlings this week when I carry the trays back and forth (I already snapped the “neck” of one of the White Wonder plants when transplanting. Grrrr). In the future I probably want to invest in better equipment just to make my life a little bit easier. Ah well.

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I have about 80 tomato plants and only need roughly 30.  I plan to sell the ones that are left-over.  Of course, I will probably just end up buying different plants and that is okay, too. We all have our “thing”.

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