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2010年05月30日

Growing Vegetables Upside Down



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■■■ NY Timesの記事 ■■■
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題名: Growing Vegetables Upside Down

記者: By KATE MURPHY

発行日: May 19, 2010

URL: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/20/garden/20tomato.html

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【Content Questions/内容についての質問】

1 Why did Mark choose to grow tomatoes upside-down?

2 Explain how he did it?

3 Name some ways to help the buckets retain water.

4 Name some plants that cannot be grown well upside down.

5 Which type of tomato is best to use and why?

【Passage/本文】

If pests and disease are wrecking your plants, it might be time to turn your garden on its head. Growing crops that dangle upside down is growing more popular, and its adherents swear they'll never come back down to earth.

Mark McAlpine began growing tomatoes upside down two years ago because cutworms and deer were ravaging the ones he planted in the ground. He made six planters out of five-gallon plastic buckets. He cut two-inch holes in the bottom of each bucket and threaded a tomato seedling down through the opening. He then filled the buckets with soil mixed with compost and hung them on sturdy steel hooks bolted to the railing of his backyard deck. He devised a triple-pulley system so he could easily hoist his upside-down planters 16 feet above the ground, away from ravenous deer.

Mark paints his buckets bright colors, and plants herbs and marigolds in the top to help retain moisture. Another, less decorative solution for preventing evaporation is to top the planters with mulch or simply cover them with a lid. Regardless, upside-down planters tend to dry out really fast, so be prepared to water a lot -- probably once a day in the heat of the summer.

"The tomatoes and basil worked real well upside down, but the lettuce, peas and carrots weren't so successful,"he said. "It's been trial and error."

Upside-down gardening is primarily used for leggy crops like tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers. Tomato varieties are labeled as either indeterminate or determinate. Determinate tomatoes are shorter and tend to produce all their fruit at once, which could weigh down and break the stems if hanging upside down. Indeterminate types have more flexible, sprawling stems that produce fruit throughout the season and are less likely to be harmed by gravity.

Web sites like Instructables.com and UpsideDownTomatoPlant.com show how it can be done, and YouTube has several how-to videos.

【Answers to Content Questions/内容についての質問の正解】

1 Because cutworms and deer were eating the ones he planted in the
ground.

2 He planted tomatoes upside-down in five-gallon plastic buckets filled
with a mixture of compost and soil which he then raised 16 feet above
the ground.

3 On the top of the bucket plant herbs or flowers, put mulch, or cover it
with a lid.

4 Lettuce, peas and carrots are not good candidates to grow upside-down.

5 Indeterminate types have flexible, sprawling stems that produce fruit
throughout the season and are less likely to break.

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