The story so far:
The two tomato plants stand in a pall of putrid “safer” insecticidal soap. And I already regret spraying them with the stuff. “No unpleasant smell”, the bottle advertises, but I, and the common white butterfly flitting warily around the perimeter of the big plant, disagree. They smell like a hardware store: a little like wood, a little like dirt, and a lot like grease and something burning. The big plant has bumps along its main stem, like an alligator but smoother, softer, and when you rub the bumps the green, fresh tomato scent covers your fingers. Not today though, today it’s just plant soap hanging in the air in an almost visible haze. The only bright spot is an orange one. The day before I had moved them to a sunnier spot and today, the first tomato on the little plant is finally starting to ripen. A chemical sweet moment, to be sure.