It has been a long wait since starting seedlings in March.. but ta-da! Summer is here and the tomatoes are really coming on.
In this box we have Cherokee Purple, Serdtse Dezdemony, Pervaya Lubov, Black Cherry, Black Plum, Sungold, Oaxaca Jewel, Early Russian, and Brazilian Beauty.
We source seeds from different seed companies, save our own, and trade with friends. Many of these tomatoes were started by an amazing gardener who participates in online forums and seed exchanges. Phrases like ‘parthenocarpic fruit set’ and ‘not well known outside of Russia’ have whetted their appetite for flavorful and cold hardy varieties. Of course, it’s hard to limit yourself to just one plant in an experiment, so we luckily got the extras!
A tremendous thank you goes out to all the generous seed savers who grow and share this exciting plant material.
Ready for my close up! Here are a few of the show stoppers in greater detail
Cherokee Purple: This is our main large fruited tomato this season, all of our plants came from seed saved by Nadya / Seed to Spoon in 2010! It’s a deep purple almost black beefsteak tomato with green shoulders – lots of juice and a sweet flavour.
Serdstse Dezdemony: Large fruited yellow heart shaped fruit with a mild taste. The leaves and stalk are slight compared to the whopper of a fruit yielded. Hopefully this one keeps producing more fruit throughout the season. Translates from Russian as “Desdemona’s Heart”.
PI 12025: Catchy name, huh? This is the identifier from a tomato breeders gene bank, which preserves unique and desirable qualities and makes them available to plant breeders to create new varieties. It has a tart acidic tomato flavour, which is a great balance to the other milder pink/yellow varieties we grow. This plant took a long time to set fruit, but now it is ripening quickly and bearing a lot of small to medium sized fruits. Origin is from Turkey.
Lotos: This usual pale yellow/ivory tomato is from Russia, “lotus”. The flavor is fruity and perhaps the closest we have to a peach tree we have around here!
Sungold: This is the only hybrid grown on the farm, but IMHO the most delicious cherry tomato available! It’s bright orange, intensely flavourful, and very productive.
I will follow up this post with some more detail on our seed saving projects (corn, beets, favas, kale, flowers, plus more tomatoes and peppers) and tips for growing tomatoes outdoors – we are trialing three determinate varieties (Alaska, Kimberly, and Al Kuffa) for outdoor production.
I’ll let you know how it all works out!