Tomato Seedlings

28 Mar

Since a picture is worth a thousand words, and since there are many who -like me- still hold firm to the old ways and require a bit of a nudge, I submit the following images of tomato seedlings. I too was a loyal shopper, purchasing seeds from “those companies” you know them, I don’t need to list them. I used to grab seeds here, order them there, and wonder why in the world my plants didn’t produce.

The first photo is an image of Rutger Tomatoes. Billy’ prefers this variety. However, upon closer inspection notice the thin and spindly nature of each plant.

By comparison, on the right you will see the Cherokee Purples. If you read my blog regularly, these are the seedlings planted in a plastic shoe box and kept warm with Christmas-tree-lights. If you missed that post, click here to read. Tomatoes need hours and hours, and then a few more…hours of sunlight every day. Both the Rutgers and the Purples were planted at the same time. Both in my home, same care. I wanted a side-by-side comparison with the hopes of swaying Billy (and you) into growing only Botanical Interests seeds, instead of those “other companies.”

Rutger Tomatoes, One of Billy's favorites

Rutger Tomatoes, One of Billy’s favorites

Cherokee Purple Seedlings. Planted same time. Notice thickness of stalk

Cherokee Purple Seedlings. Planted same time. Notice thickness of stalk

Here is an image of the same plants today.

As you see in the image below, the Rutgers are still the same size. They have barely grown, while the Botanical Interest’s Cherokee Purples have sprouted new leaves. Considering the dreary weather, and frigid temperatures, I’m pleased with my Purples.

Please consider trying Botanical Interest’s Seeds.  In Georgia, seeds are available in Pike’s. Also, ask for them at Harry’s Supermarket. It’s time to start those seedlings. Happy gardening and remember to keep those hands dirty.

Update March 29, 2013 at 10:55 am. WOW. After receiving a comment that I had the same images, I have inserted another image today (difficult to hold one box over the other while holding the camera, and trying to snap the photo; but, I am quite offended that someone would think I am not honest. I guess the next allegation is photoshop). As you can see, side-by-side. I can’t zoom in (no extra hand), but you can see very little growth on the left, explosive growth on the heritage seeds. If you want to purchase genetically altered seeds, by all means, please do so. My goal has, and always will remain, teaching people living in urban areas how to grow food.  I have given away seeds and helped people plant gardens (all without compensation). Unless you are actively, hands on- trying to help people grow their own food, and until you take the time to personally get to know me, please toss negative comments toward someone else. What do I have to gain by manipulating anything?

Please, only sunshine and tomato seedlings here. 

The seedlings. Side by Side.

The seedlings. Side by Side.

Renea Winchester is the award-winning author of In the Garden with Billy: Lessons About Life, Love & Tomatoes. In 2012 she released Stress-Free Marketing: Practical Advice for the Newly Published Author. 2014 will see the release of In the Kitchen with Billy: Farming, Friends & Fried Bologna Sandwiches. She is currently working on her first novel. She would love to hear from you. Visit her at


8 responses to “Tomato Seedlings

  1. Jennie Mayes

    March 28, 2013 at 1:25 pm

    Wow, those CP’s are looking great! I love heirlooms. Another favorite is Brandywine. And another great thing about an heirloom, or open-pollinated, tomato is that you can save the seeds and count on getting what you planted. Seeds from a hybrid plant can produce something not as good. I plant both types in my garden, though, because different years bring different weather conditions, diseases, etc.

    I’m really late getting started this year. Haven’t even started the pepper seedlings yet. You?

    • Renea

      March 29, 2013 at 12:33 pm

      I like Brandywine but they take forever to ripen. My new favorite are “Ace” tomatoes. Primarily because I can them and you don’t even need to cut them up. Just peel the skin, slip them into the jar, seal and you’re done.

      Also, if you haven’t done this in the past, start saving all of your egg shells. Bake them for 2 minutes and crumble them into the soil where you will plant tomatoes. They love calcium and it will prevent blossom end rot. Tums and stale milk also work well.

  2. GV

    March 28, 2013 at 1:50 pm


  3. Jeannette House

    March 29, 2013 at 2:30 pm

    i examined the pictures very closely and i am positive the rutger tomato ‘after’ pic is simply a duplicate of the ‘before’ pic. the light exposure, soil granules, size and juxtoposition of leaf parts and other tiny bits are indentical. i really do believe your heirlooms are doing better, but this seems manipulative reporting for effect, not accuracy.

    • Renea

      March 29, 2013 at 2:58 pm

      An updated image posted today. Showing side-by-side.

    • Jacqueline

      March 29, 2013 at 5:04 pm

      Jeannette House, don’t you have anything better to do?

  4. Linda Cook DeVona

    March 30, 2013 at 11:49 am

    How do you transfer the seedlings from the plastic containers when it’s time to transplant? Do theyop out or do you use a spoon? I never thought of starting seeds in those sandwich meat containers& I have a lot of them!

    • Renea

      April 1, 2013 at 12:24 am

      Miss Linda,
      Excellent question. Since it’s not planting time I haven’t written that blog post yet.
      Yes, you can use a spoon. I water the plant and just scoop (deep so to get all the roots).
      Those sandwich meat containers would be perfect! Absolutely perfect. Remember, shred a bit of newspaper and place in the bottom.
      Water the newspaper well, then add the potting soil. You should have seedlings in no time.
      So happy for you. Keep us posted.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: