Despite my best intentions not to overcrowd the tomatoes and to keep them well tended, the greenhouse descended into a chaotic jungle. I was fairly diligent at cutting out the side shoots and keeping the plants tied in until the tomatoes started to ripen, when for some reason, I then abandoned all watering and sideshooting. It was getting a bit of a struggle to get through the door and push our way through the foliage to reach the tomatoes, not helped by a few of the support canes breaking near the base, which meant some plants were nearly horizontal.
Last week, I cut and tied, stood up canes and made rickety support structures that are just about holding up the plants. The upside is that we can see the ripe tomatoes and easily pick them. The downside is that we can see the ripe tomatoes. And the tomatoes that will be ripe tomorrow. And the next day. And the next …
How am I dealing with this glut of tomatoes? Obviously, I should be flicking to this post, which is full of ideas. Instead though I’m faffing about printing labels. Just so that they’re ready when I need them.
The tomato label (at the top) is a lino print. I haven’t cut lino for years and find it rather a challenge, particularly when the lino is old and hard. When the price sticker is from a shop that closed well over ten years ago, you know that the lino is unlikely to be soft and supple.
The labels above are made with a bit of foam from the children’s area of the craft store, stuck onto some cardboard and inked. Very simple. There are some step by step instructions here for hand printed labels should you want to have a go.
You can print onto all sorts of paper; for these labels I used ordinary white copier paper, brown paper and baking parchment. When the ink is completely dry, stick the labels onto the jar by lightly brushing a very thin layer of milk over the back of the label and pressing onto the jar. Yes, milk. I admit that this is something I discovered on the internet and I have no idea if it works long term. My labels are still firmly stuck after a week but maybe next week all the labels will have unstuck and floated to the floor.
Have you used milk to stick labels to jars? Does it work?