Not so long after the dawn of 2016 Barb and I felt the need to relocate. Wise or unwise at our age, we cast about for a place we could feel at home. Southeast Arkansas caught our fancy. Though I respond to the why Crossett, Arkansas question with, “…well, it’s where we ran out of gas,” it’s not the truth. But that answer usually slows the questions. In actuality, we found what seems to be missing in so many areas – water, trees, and friendly people.
Though Barb has experienced a host of health problems there have been many positive things happen that have distracted us from our problems. One of them is a distressed tomato plant.
One day in March while I was leaving the local Walmart by way of the garden area and came across a small, root-bound cherry-tomato plant. It was the last one and on sale at $1.50. I brought it home, found a discarded baker’s bucket, and set in a sunny spot near our entryway. Grateful for the room to stretch its roots – I assume – it grew and bloomed.
Unfortunately, Barb had a heart attack and problems with her meds and pacemaker which lead to an extended period of time in a Little Rock hospital – 23 days. That would have been the end of our abandoned tomato plant had our neighbor not rescued it. And when we returned home she brought it back.
I carried water for it every other day and when it began showing signs of heat stress I moved it into the shade of an oak tree. The new place, I was certain, was too shady. But there didn’t seem to be any halfway measures. Our tomato plant, however, thought differently. It thrived.
One day I noticed the drip from the AC unit and moved the tomato plant under the drip – about one every other second with no chemicals. I feared that might be too much water, so I watched it closely. It bloomed to beat the band and began producing tomatoes that explode in my mouth like cherry bombs. Out of this world.
So far we’ve harvested about 50 tomatoes. Kind of got ahead on it, and now we have to wait for the last couple of dozen to ripen. And then it will be done.
This guy caught his/her second wind. With dozens of blossoms we are going to harvest a second crop. I didn’t think that was possible.
Sometimes it’s nice to be wrong.