As you can see by my sidebar I'm a fan of Johnny Seeds. I'm on their email list and received this from them today.
Dear Johnny's Catalog Store Customers,
My vegetable garden is in except for the tomatoes and a few other stragglers. The tomatoes are always the last to go in perhaps because of their status as the crown jewel of the garden. Every year I pore over gardening articles with tips on how to grow the best tomatoes. Everyone seems to have an opinion on how to get the best tasting tomato. It starts with choosing a variety to grow: heirloom vs. hybrid, determinate vs. indeterminate. I opt for a mix. At planting time the debate shifts to mulch: red vs. black plastic, or a cover crop of crimson clover or cut Sudan grass, or, heaven forbid, just plopping the transplant right into the soil. I have done them all. Next come the pruning theories: one leader or two or just forget pruning all together. I usually go with one leader. Recently, various methods of trellising have drawn attention. There are tomato cages, staking, the Florida weave, the Dutch spiral, the Caribbean quadrapod, the English long row, and on and on. Ugh, it is enough to send a gardener packing her spade and hoe and heading to the produce aisle or better yet the farmers' market.
It was in this context that I recently read of yet another study on growing the best tasting tomatoes. The British Horticultural Society is conducting a study at Wisley in Surrey to see if tomatoes respond to voices. Auditions were recently held and a cadre of people with different voices was selected to read verses by Shakespeare and John Wyndham. Recordings of the readings are being played to the roots of the plants while a control group of tomatoes grows in silence. The study follows claims by the Prince of Wales that he talks to his tomatoes and thinks it helps them grow. While the study is fun, a BHS spokesman says it is definitely a serious study.
The results of the test have yet to be released. However, past tests have shown that plants respond to grower's stress; i.e. if you think your plant won't make it, it probably won't. Bottom line here is don't worry about whether you should talk to your plants or not, just enjoy them. When you are taking a break from the garden, don't forget to check out the June edition of "What's Growing on?".
Johnny's Selected Seeds Catalog
Store 955 Benton Ave.
Winslow, ME 049011
I must say that this email had me in stitches. Now I've been known to talk to my houseplants. Yes, I often talk to my orchids and African violets thanking them for their wonderful blooms and encouraging them to bloom. There are some benefits of Andy being deaf - one being that he can't hear my wacky conversations with the plants. Anyway, I do think that if nothing else good energy is contagious and talking to houseplants promotes good energy, which might promote growth. But, I don't know if I'd go so far as talking to my tomatoes. It would just be another reason for my neighbors to think I've completely lost it!
What do you think? Do you talk to your garden or house plants? Share your thoughts.