Here in Melbourne we've had a couple of days of some sunshine, so I got a bit overexcited at the weather finally turning a little bit spring like and I planted out some tomato seedlings from their current safehouse of the polytunnel.
Traditionally in Melbourne the time to plant out your tomatoes is the weekend before or after the Melbourne Cup. Which is about a month away. I don't care, as I've always planted out my tomatoes earlier than that date.
However I'm not totally foolhardy. I tested the soil in the wicking beds which I am devoting to tomatoes this year. The soil was not cold to touch (which is often the case with raised beds where they heat up earlier than regular ground level soil) but in fact pleasantly warm, so I felt the tomatoes were unlikely to get too rude a shock coming out of the comfy polytunnel environs and into the real world.
The raised beds got some manure dug in, then in went the tomato seedlings.
To not be totally cruel I have given them some added protection of plastic bottle covers (the bottoms of the bottles are cut off so they just get stuck into the soil around the seedlings) and old coffee glass jars so they are protected from any real cold and get a mini glass house environment to help them on their way.
This also makes labelling easy
Now I do have back up seedlings just in case this doesn't work out. But fingers crossed they will grow to nice healthy tomatoes. I can't wait for tomato season to begin. It's been way too long since I had fresh homegrown tomato.