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Shelton Mason County Journal
Shelton, Washington
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June 5, 2014     Shelton Mason County Journal
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June 5, 2014

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Page A-24 - Mason County Journal - Thursday, June 5, 2014 MASTER GARDENER A few tips for growing tomatoes he weather has fi- nally warmed up and the prudent garden- er who has delayed planting tomatoes out in the garden should be doing so now. Each year the Master Gardeners has its plant sale the weekend of MotheFs Day, but most years it is still just a bit too cold overnight for these heat-loving vegeta- bles. I have been told by a seasoned vegetable grower and Master Gardener - Steve Edmondson -- that he waits until June and some years even closer to July to put his out. There are many ways to successfully grow tomatoes in the Pacific Northwest. Besides growing condi- tions, it is important to choose varieties that take less time to mature and be sure you do not use overhead watering. The wet leaves and cooler night temperatures in August By JEANNE REHWALDT and September are perfect conditions for the dreaded late blight fungus. There is nothing that will nfin your tomato harvest quicker (except maybe the deer- a story about that later) than late blight. Once a plant has it there really isn't any way to save it. You may choose to grow your tomatoes in a contain- er. Just about any large container will work. Some people put them on wheels and move them around so the plants get maximum sunlight. I've found that you really don't need to go to all that trouble. Just plant them in good soil, give them some fertilizer - I use Alaska fish fertilizer -- and keep them moist. If they dry out too much be- tween waterings you may develop blossom end rot, a disease related to calcium deficiency, but tied to lack of water to take up the calcium. If the tomato plants you purchased are getting a bit tall and leggy, plant them deeper in the hole. New roots will form where each leaf node is. Remove the leaves that will be below the soil level before plant- ing. A week before planting you should harden them offby placing them in a protected location outdoors and bring them inside at night. I have had suc- cess placing them on my covered front porch and have not had to bring them inside at night. When you are confident that your soil temperature has reached 50 degrees, place them in the ground (or container). It is very important that you establish a healthy root system, so don't be afraid to pinch offblos- soms or small fruit. They will take energy away from your developing root system. It's best not to plant deeper than 7 inches because soil temperatures will be too cool. If your plant is very tall, plant the roots at 6 inches then dig a trench next to it and lay the plant in it, with the top coming out away from the root ball. Again, roots will develop all along the stem in the ground. They will need about i inch of water per week. If tomatoes are in the ground, water thor- oughly at the root level twice a week. Tomatoes in containers may need more frequent watering. Mulch the tomato bed once the plants are well established to discourage weeds and make them easier to pull. Pull weeds when they are young. Avoid cultivating around tomatoes. They are shal- low-rooted. Around mid-August cut blossoms and small fruit off to encourage ripening of tomatoes already set. Reduce or stop watering about mid- to late-August to stress the plant and force fruit to ripen faster. Harstine: Be A Hero 5K on Saturday continued from page A- 19 Hero 5K run and walk on June 7. The $20 for the 5K and $10 for the 1-mile race will be at the school. Registration event. You are encouraged to come The ASB at Pioneer Intermediate/ will open at 7:45 a.m. and the race dressed as your favorite superhero or Middle School will have its first Be A will start at 9 a.m. The entry fee is create your own costume. ALLYN INTERIORS (360) 275-9664 Hours: Monday - Friday 9 a.m. - 5 p.m. Saturday 10 a.m. -3 p.m. 18347 St. Rt. 3 Allyn, WA Blog: www.allyninteriors.com Window Coverings: www.allyninteriorsnw.com Emaih allyninteriors@hotmail.com Scholarships: Event takes place Sunday continued from page A-19 "Every application was just amazing," he said. "It's a really hard choice." The celebration is scheduled for 2 p.m. to 5 p.m. Sunday at Kneeland Park in Shelton. 'What we were trying to do was recognize the families of migrant children ... making sure our struggles and motivations are appre- ciated," said Rivas-Perez, who helped organize the event along with other students from the Latino Youth of Shelton group. Rivas-Perez said he wanted to graduate to make his parents proud. "I think a lot of people say graduation is an expectation ... (it's) a moment to celebrate," said Garcia, who also helped organize the event. "People sometimes doubt we can do things." The formal Shelton High School graduation is entirely in English, which the students said is difficult to understand for parents who only speak Spanish. The celebration on Sunday will be in Spanish, English, and a Guatemalan dia- lect. Organizers have invited 48 students from SHS and eight from CHOICE. Last year Immigrantes Unidos and the Shelton School District had a similar celebra- tion for English Learner Students, said Mau- reen Black, GEAR UP Student Support Inter- ventionist at CHOICE. "It's a time to recognize all their hard work," Garcia said. Each student will get a certificate. The event will include food, pifiatas, dance perfor- mances and open mic for students and families to talk about their struggles and successes. SHS teacher Allison De Mendez will also be recognized at the event. Former Evergreen El.ementary principal Steve Warner will speak during the celebration. LU