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Member discussion regarding the methods, varieties and merits of growing tomatoes.

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Old November 9, 2012   #1
Howard Nemerov
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Default Market opportunity for book on container growing

I just read “Growing Tomatoes In Containers - A Simple Guide For A Bountiful Harvest.” I had hopes that I would learn something helpful for growing dwarf tomatoes in pots.
What an absolutely useless book!
It discusses using plastic containers, but that’s pretty much one of those “duh” topics. Many other gardening books will tell you that plastic containers don’t dry out as fast as clay pots, and their lighter weight makes them easier to move.
The author discusses using the right potting mix, but doesn’t offer any recipes or advice based on experience of what worked best for her, beyond buying Miracle-Gro mix. She discusses nutrition, but doesn’t offer any suggestions on how a feeding program might different for potted tomatoes as opposed to planting in beds. Same with the brief mention of watering, staking, etc.
There’s discussion about bugs and diseases, but many other tomato books do a better job. Again, this was just a brief overview. You can gather more information on all relevant topics by searching Extension and college agriculture websites.
Don’t waste your time. This thing shouldn’t even be offered as a book, Kindle or otherwise. I’m going to see about getting a refund.
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Old November 9, 2012   #2
Redbaron
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Well they did warn you it was a simple guide. Next time buy the advanced guide!
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Old November 9, 2012   #3
kilroyscarnival
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Dude, you totally beat me to it. I was even sketching out some thoughts on the three eBooks I bought (mind you, rather cheaply) about growing tomatoes.

I thought the biggest "duh" of this book was that she discouraged growing from seed except in the case of an experienced gardener, and then never covered starting from seed. Hello? Even if she buys her plants from the nursery, she should at least pad out her book with some basic planting information.

But I will give her points, versus the two other books, for being a bit more straightforward and less breezy-clever than the other two. Douglas Green's Tomato Growing Secrets was the better of those two, and at least clued me into the idea of a homemade watering aid made from a soda bottle. Mark Allen's "Growing Tomatoes: How to Grow Tomatoes That Are Big, Colorful, Juicy, and Tasty!" was too glib for its own good. None of these was very comprehensive about varieties, only naming a few of the most common or perhaps to them most intriguing. None of them addressed the concept that some of us live in very different climates and zones (okay, maybe a Florida gripe.)

Well, I am new to Kindle (for the iPad) and having fun with it. I'm stuck somewhere in the middle of Bob Woodward's latest, but I did read some library books via Kindle. Basically, you get to DL via Amazon, but in three weeks it turns into a pumpkin. And only one library member can DL it at a time. I scanned Bartholomew's Square Foot Gardening that way, and read the latest Adriana Trigiani novel.

I listen to On the Media (a public radio show) and know that self published books can be notoriously deceptive. I figured for a few bucks these were worth it just for the experience of seeing what the industry of self-publishing hath wrought. But I wouldn't recommend any of them as actual reference books. Still kind of hunting for a good gardening/tomato bible just to have on hand as reference.
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Old November 9, 2012   #4
Sun City Linda
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My brother has a book on Amazon called True Living Organics. He is partially disabled and grows a medical crop in less than 5 gallon containers. About ten bucks for the book as I recall. I was impressed. Lots of pixs recipes for growing medium, info about different additives, mycros, etc. Since tomatoes have similar growing requirements, it may be helpful to others. I have been asked to post it on another site but never did as I did not want to be spamming. My brother is cultivation editor for Skunk Magazine and I think they published it.
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Old November 10, 2012   #5
Howard Nemerov
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I posted because there appears to be no “advanced” book on growing tomatoes in containers, providing an enterprising tomato grower a marketing opportunity. By the way, I did get a refund from Amazon, even though I had the book longer than seven days (their official policy). I explained that when publishers consider printing a new manuscript covering an old topic, there are certain criteria that need to be met: Does it contain new information not previously published? Does it offer a new perspective? It has to be unique and advance the story. This “book” failed on all criteria.
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Old November 10, 2012   #6
tedln
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I don't read many self help books. If someone goes to a stable and rides a horse around a paddock with the stable owner holding the reins, the new rider will probably write a book the next day entitled "How To Ride A Horse".

I left a different forum (after they booted me) because one of the container gardening moderators was thought of as a "dirt God" and his philosophy was considered the only true word. I think he may even have published some books on the subject. I will occasionally buy "Plumbing For Dummies" or other self help books with the words "for dummies" in the title. I just feel those books were written with me in mind.

Ted
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Old November 10, 2012   #7
Sun City Linda
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lol Ted. I know the container gardening forum of which you speak. I quit going there after I realized it was a one note samba.
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Old November 10, 2012   #8
Redbaron
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sun City Linda View Post
lol Ted. I know the container gardening forum of which you speak. I quit going there after I realized it was a one note samba.
One thing is for sure. This forum isn't a one note samba

Lots of heated debates here and as many different opinions as there are people! I should know. In just a few weeks being here I have been in my share!

But even with the huge differences in opinions and ideas, most people are still quite friendly and don't seem to be holding grudges. I have been doing this tomato growing thing 42 years and have learned as much in a few weeks as many years of growing. I haven't learned as much on the topic in such a short amount of time since I first got into the organic movement 35 years ago and it was all new to me. It's good for the ego to be the most experienced gardener on the block, but it doesn't increase your knowlege. This place humbles you but at the same time increases your knowlege! It is quite an accomplishment actually! This may be the best forum on any topic I have ever seen. Seriously impressed with what Mishka and the mods put together here!
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