In my almost year-long tenure as a prolific user of all things As Seen on TV, there are very few products that I’ve actually been excited to use. Sure, there were products like The Ped Egg and Aqua Globes that I ended up really liking, and still use to this day, but I wasn’t foaming at the mouth to try them out initially.
Maybe it’s a sign that I’m way too into this blog, or a sad, sad, indicator that I’m becoming old and incredibly boring, but I couldn’t wait for the warm months to come so that I could try out the Topsy Turvy Tomato Planter. Thanksgiving? Christmas? New Year’s? Just blips on my radar screen. May 2nd, the day we purchased the Topsy Turvy and began our journey in tomato awesomeness? A day that will live in infamy.
There are two things that I should state right from the start of this review. Number one, I know next to nothing about growing tomatoes. I’ve learned a lot about plants since we started landscaping around the house, but I’ve never attempted to grow anything from its infancy. My idea of tending plants is buying those suckers fully grown, sticking them in the flower bed, and watering them to death. But, having a little vegetable garden has always been a dream of mine, and this seemed like a good place to start.
Number two, I am a lazy, lazy reviewer. I bought a tomato plant to use for the Topsy Turvy but didn’t bother to get one to use as a control plant grown the traditional way, nor did I try my hand at growing a plant prior to the Turvy to see how the two may differ, and for this I apologize. It’s inexcusable to run a review without the proper preparation. I mean, doctors don’t just operate on people without practicing it on a cadaver, right? Pilots don’t just get fly a plane without flight training. Oil companies don’t just drill giant holes into the ocean without knowing how to stop an hemorrhaging well after a massive explosion, right?
Ahem. Moving on.
The concept behind the Topsy is simple – a tomato plant grows upside down in a thick, weatherproof planter. Essentially, you just insert a plant in through the bottom of the planter (it’s held in place with a round foam ring) and then fill it with soil. Compared to the idea of readying the garden, planting, and then trying to protect the plants from the rabbitts, squirrels, and groundhogs that frequent our yard, two simple steps sounds like the best thing since sliced bread.
I picked up two seedlings at a local nursery. Because I am greedy and impatient, I selected the Early Girl variety, which promised a maturation of 50-60 days after transplanting into soil. I really wanted Heirloom seedlings, but I was afraid of the weight of the tomatoes pulling the entire getup down. I figured that with the Turvy’s promise to deliver tomatoes 20% earlier, I should have some pretty decent tomatoes somewhere around late June.
I used soil that Jeremy and I had composted over the winter, and hung the Turvy on a large shephard’s hook that I had in the shed. A word to the wise- you will need a very strong support for your Topsy Turvy. The soil makes the bag really heavy, and I have a feeling that I’ll have to move on to something even stronger as the summer goes on. How someone could grow eggplant or zucchini out of this thing without welding it to the side of a building for support is beyond me.
Now, I’m no tomatologist, but I’m pretty sure that a tomato sprouting up ridiculously early is THE BUSINESS. I’m so happy with it that I’m considering branching out into the strawberry planter or the ginormous Topsy Tree. Old and boring, Exhibit B.
I feel like a proud Mama for making something grow. I can’t wait to love and nurture my little gals until they’re big, beautiful, ripe, mature tomatoes. At which point I will promptly pluck them from the vine, slice them up, and put them in my tummy along with some fresh mozzarella and a little basil.
Life is cruel.
Check back over the summer for more updates on the Topsy Turvey Tomato Planter, and don’t forget to check out our latest contest. Just unscramble the letters of an As Seen on TV product to get entered into a drawing for a We Took the Bait t-shirt, coffee mug, or other radical Bait Shoppe item of your choosing. Each unscrambled word is another chance to win- submit one or sixty!
Where to Buy: Topsy Turvy Upside Down Tomato Hanger at Asseenontvandmore.com
Price:$9.99 + S & H
Won’t you feel bad eating the tomatoes that you’ve so lovingly nurtured?: Listen, honey. This kind of thing happens in nature all the time. Survival of the fittest. Top of the food chain. I love my little plants, but I have the gardening gloves and the knife and fork. I WIN.