Tuesday, July 27, 2010

The Tomato Chronicles: What's Working, What's Not? July 27, 2010

It's July 27, and here's my report on what's working and what's not in the tomato realm. This will help me remember which varieties to purchase next spring - what performed best.

First, this was not the year for starting tomatoes from seed. I did so, but due to the extreme weather conditions, the seedlings did poorly.  I ended up buying plants in the following varieties: Black Prince (Russian purple heirloom), Better Boy, Big Boy, Early Girl, Jetstar, Celebrity and Rutgers. Successfully raised from seed: a purple heirloom and a yellow heirloom - variety unknown - I saved seed from two purchased tomatoes last fall; one Celebrity, one Jetstar, one Early Girl and two Mortgage Lifter.

Jetstar gave us our first ripe tomato, followed closely by Celebrity and Black Prince. All were tasty. Black Prince is extremely small and tends toward cracking but is delicious. Jetstar is small - Celebrity just a bit larger. I have several almost ripe Rutgers. They are medium-sized/some might say large but not real large.

Mortgage Lifter has the blight. It did last year, too, but still produced quite a few nice, tasty, large tomatoes. That's why I raised it again this year.

The "Early Girl" I purchased must have been mislabeled. For one thing, no ripe tomatoes yet. For another, the fruits are huge - that is definitely not Early Girl.

These tomato plants are growing very tall and are full of fruit.
I predict that in 3 or 4 weeks, I'll be supplying the neighbors, coworkers, church folks and just about anybody else that wants them - with my overabundance of tomatoes....right now, though, I long for more ripe tomatoes...BLTs....fresh salsa....

Tomatoes, sweet corn, watermelon...the taste of summer.


  1. They look very nice! Our weather messed ours up something awful! We were late getting the first ones out!
    We also moved them to a new location and that's not working either. The ones in the ice cream chairs were very late plantings. We should have tomatoes by Thanksgiving!
    We used to plant them next the the garden shed. They would grow over the top and it was hard picking. They are going back there next year!
    Don't forget your local food pantry! We took our surplus to ours last year and they were very grateful!
    This has just been a weird year. I hope we get back to normal next year!
    Hugs- Tete

  2. I wish we were neighbors! Ours did VERY poorly this year and I've been so upset- I usually have a huge abundance. Lucky you!
    xoxo Pattie

  3. Home grown tomatoes are always delicious, yours look wonderful; lots of great information for your readers...Happy day Beth!

  4. Good heavens Beth - growing that many tomato plants you surely will be supplying everyone you know with bounty. But, that's the nice part of gardening isn't it? To share is a good thing.
    Do you have a food bank that will take fresh produce? Here they're always saying they'll take it as well as dry goods.
    I bought juicy beefstake tomatoes at the farmers market on the weekend and they say summer to me as well.

  5. Thing sure look good considering all the yucky weather!!!

  6. Our tomatoes have not gone as well as we had wanted either. We are finally getting some color on ours, and here the Basil has been ready for months.
    But they are the best grown in your garden, so we wait.
    I bet you can't wait either!

  7. You do have lots of tomatoes :) :) :) Many of my blogger friends with gardens..they're growing tomatoes too. I love the idea of turning it into salsa.

    Oh, and that tomatoe you called a "mortage lifter"..that's too funny :) :) :)...the name!!!!

    Have a great week. Love and hugs from Oregon, Heather :)

  8. Wow, those look amazing!


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