HDB Farming: Growing Organic Tomatoes At The Rooftop Garden :D

hdb farming tomatoes

I secretly want to bring everyone I know to the rooftop garden and show them the tomatoes I’ve grown FROM SEED! But they probably won’t be impressed. 😀 It’s taken so many months before the plant bore fruit that I’ve lost count. Finally I have golf ball sized tomatoes ripening and it’s making my heart sing. 😀 I’ve been like a paranoid mother checking the leaves to see if insects (read: pests) are setting up their homes, pruning the plant, weeding, etc. I do also think the soil has been ‘fertilized’ with my sweat because it’s always a sweaty affair when I am at the rooftop garden and the sun’s beaming down on me. Finally, my baby’s all grown up and I have 8 tomatoes! 😀

Some are still green, but the size is pretty good.

Growing tomatoes in Singapore

I’ve wrapped up the redder ones in newspaper so the birds and insects won’t notice and attack them. I’ve read somewhere on the Internet that birds will peck at the tomatoes because they want to drink what’s inside; they’re just thirsty. I’m not taking any chances. So it’s newspaper PLUS netting!

And I’ve always had to combat the pest issue. Because no pesticides are used, there’s everything from white flies to grasshoppers to what I just found today… some black ladybird-like creatures and their eggs on the underside of one leaf:

Pests attacking tomato plant

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It’s been quite a journey. I’ve seen a neighbor give up on her tomato plant because it wasn’t bearing fruit (perhaps more patience was required). And my plant has grown so tall, it’s even taller than me now! Just imagine that!

From growing tomatoes myself, I’ve learnt that the leaves are so fragrant. I think I’ll be able to identify a tomato plant in future just by smell alone. 🙂 And if you’re wondering what I’m thinking of growing next; it’s my favorite veggie: eggplant a.k.a brinjal.

And I’m so amazed at the power of just one seed. The seeds are so tiny you’ll probably need a tweezer to pick them up yet they can grow into ginormous plants and bear big fruit. And whenever I feel this level of amazement, I think there’s zero possibility that there’s no God. This kind of beauty can only happen by design, not by default.

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Click to read about my earlier crops:

Okra

Kailan

Caixin

HDB Farming: Growing And Harvesting Lady’s Finger / Okra

Lady's Finger flower singapore

Isn’t the flower of my lady’s finger / okra plant absolutely gorgeous? 😀 I have two okra plants in my HDB community garden plot and I’m trying to enjoy the beauty of this stunning plant before the aphids and diseases like the powdery mildew take over. Because this plant grows easily from seed, and you don’t have to do much, fellow gardeners LOVE growing okra too. And therein lies the problem: once a plant gets attacked by pests or diseases, the spread happens quickly. 😦 It makes me wonder just how much pesticide is used in commercial farming of okra since the plant is so susceptible to pests and diseases.

Here’s my other lady’s finger plant. It’s really productive, as you can see. You have to watch the pod growth closely and harvest once it’s ready, or else the pod hardens and you won’t want to eat it after that.

ladies finger grown in HDB community garden singapore

So this leaf I’m holding was cut off one of my plants. It has that white powdery mildew setting in, which is so annoying. Next to it is my neighbor’s okra plant, which also has the same disease, and looks visibly worse off.

lady's finger disease

And in this next photo below, I show you the underside of one otherwise healthy leaf I cut off the plant today as it has this white pest – aphids, I believe – setting up home here.

Ladies finger aphids

Sure, I can go get neem oil and try to save my plants but ultimately, it’s going to be futile if my neighbors aren’t taking extra care with their plants. So I’m probably going to harvest a few more lady’s finger pods and then remove the plants entirely. (@_@)

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If you want to read about what else I’ve grown in my HDB Community Garden plot, click on the images below:

HDB farming

Community Garden Singapore