Tomatoes in February Post

Back on 10/8/11, I wrote about my tomato plant (s) and how the sillies were still putting out blossoms and tomatoes despite the date. Well, here's a photo of the crazy characters still produching and even ripening!
The photo above was taken on 1/18/12. Since then, the darn things have gotten quite red! This has happened in previous years, but it never ceases to amaze me!!
You can't tell, but you're looking at three ripe fruits; hidden by leaves.
Here's a shot from two days ago, showing their gorgeous color. They're ready for picking. Yum! Hopefully they taste as good as they look! You can't see it, but it would appear that I've waited a bit too long to pick the tomatoes. The smaller one seen in the upper picture has been half eaten. Something (probably a rat) had a feast.

Due to the warm climate and plethora of fruit and nut trees, we don't have your run-of-the-mill "city" rats. No, we have fruit rats or roof rats. I won't post a photo of them, you can check out the link above if you're so inclined. The article is excellent though and written with a wry sense of humor.

Like squirrels they live in the trees, getting around on the many utility lines that we humans have kindly erected for them that create the network of highways they traverse. Being nocturnal, they spend the winter days "indoors" by squeezing into homes via cracks in attics and garage rafters.

In looking up the little vermin, I found this link at the above site. Apparently the city of Davis, California  actually "recruits" barn owls to control the long-tailed critters by putting up wooden boxes in the trees around town to encourage the owls to set up residence. Mice and rats are the natural dinner of barn owls who according to the article are "also the cutest and most charismatic owl". This way the city eliminates a good portion of the rats and reduces the use of pesticides.
Photo Source:  Daviswiki.com
Back to the tomatoes. One of the lovelies was so big it got stuck in the cyclone fence mesh and I had to sort of squish it out, but still quite nice and three inches across (7.6 cm). While out picking Thursday morning I checked the other side of the fence, I found yet another ready to pluck. Quite an amazing haul for mid-February!
I was going to photograph them all in a basket outside, but today's overcast skies followed by rain put an end to that idea. Hopefully we'll have a sprinkling of sun tomorrow. I'm quite impressed with the little plant(s) since I have done absolutely nothing to encourage this. The only water they get is from the lawn sprinklers. So this is just remarkable.

The plant(s)...can't tell if it's one or two...are once again loaded with bunches of two inch and larger green tomatoes! There's probably a good 20 to 25 and that's just at a glance. The other rather unusual thing I've observed is that (knock on wood) there are no green horn tomato worms in sight. That's usually why, in years past,  I've ripped the plants out by now.

Well, that's about all from my little 1.5 by 4 foot (.4572 m by 1.2192 m) "back forty". As always, life is truly exciting here at Grey House. Lol!

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