This is a journal of my vegetable gardens. Skippy was my first dog and he thought the garden was his, even though I did all the work. Now Suzie and Charley follow in his footsteps. We're located near Boston (USDA zone 6A). I have a community plot, a backyard vegetable garden, fruit trees, berry bushes, chickens, and bees. I use sustainable organic methods and do my best to grow all of my family's vegetables myself.

Monday, October 23, 2017

my best tomatoes this year

I'm almost out of garden tomatoes. Two weeks ago I picked the last of the green ones on my tomato vines. They’ve been gradually ripening indoors. Yesterday I made a batch of sauce, probably my last one after a summer of making nearly a batch a week. I only have a couple tomatoes left :-(

I’ve been thinking about which were my favorite varities this year. For slicing tomatoes, it was an heirloom variety called True Black Brandywine (seeds from Baker Creek). It’s not related to Brandywine and doesn't have that mealy flesh. Its flavor and texture are fantastic and it's beautifully colored - deep purple with green shoulders.

true black brandywine IMG_0618 true black brandywine IMG_0547 true black brandywine IMG_0573

My best sauce tomatoes were San Marzano and Opalka. San Marzano gave me a huge number of middle sized tomatoes. Opalka had fewer tomatoes but they were enormous and perfect for sauce.

I grew about 20 varieties this year - a couple of each. Next year I'm planning to grow many fewer varieties. Probably slicing tomatoes: True Black Brandywine, Orange Blossom, Pink Beauty, Cherokee Purple, and Mortgage Lifter. Sauce tomatoes: San Marzano and Opalka.

I'd love to hear what tomatoes did best for other gardeners.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Coastal northwest is not ideal for tomatoes, very cool nights, so cherry tomatoes are the ones that preform the best and sun gold is at the top of the list.

October 23, 2017 8:47 AM

Blogger Linda from CT said...

Hi Kathy,

My favorites so far:

Pozzano F1 hybrid San Marzano type
Pompeii F1 hybrid Roma type
(they both seem to be the same size- elongated and very productive, disease resistant- make good sauce)
Hogheart heirloom- not disease resistant- the first to die but delicious large elongated fat curved tomato great for sauce

Principe Borghese- OP Italian small plum, very prolific, great for drying and sauce. The seed companies describe it as determinate but that is not my experience.

Mary's small OP plums- seeds I saved from my mom who is now passed. She planted these every year for what seemed like forever. Sweet, prolific and great for sauce or drying.

October 23, 2017 8:15 PM

Blogger kathy said...

Sounds great. I'll try the first two, disease resistant and high productivity sounds good. Maybe the third one too.

October 24, 2017 9:33 AM

Blogger Phuong said...

I think Black Brandywine is an excellent tomato as well, it's actually one of the earliest of the big tomatoes for me, although I used a different seed seller.

I'll give you my favorites of the earlies since you're much more northerly than us:
Black Prince - small to medium, ripens at the same time as Sun Gold cherries for us
Cosmonaut Volkov - medium red, early and productive and loves our hot summers
Peron - medium red, just a great tasty tomato
Granny Cantrell's German Red - large pink, early and productive for a big tomato, a shorter plant than most I grow and difficult to germinate at times. These were from Baker Creek.

I grow 4 different varieties of Brandywines and I do think the Pink/Red Brandywines require hot humid summers to reach their potential.

October 25, 2017 7:42 AM

Blogger kathy said...

Awesome! Sounds Ike I be growing lots of varieties again. I can’t resist trying some of these.

October 25, 2017 9:06 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I live in the northern Adirondack Mts. This season I grew Amish Romas (I bought a bushel from the Amish a few years ago, so I'm unsure of their true name) and Italian Heirloom tomatoes. Even with our wet summer, I had tomatoes over a pound each! I tried Mortgage Lifters and Brandywine this year and both were a flop. I may try again next year.

ADK Judi

October 28, 2017 8:59 AM

Blogger Nigel Gnome said...

We are just starting into spring in New Zealand, so I'm most interested in your observations Cathy. I have gone for a black tomato called black krim, it's the only black one I could find. They do say it's a delicious eating tomato, and a sweet 100 plant for salad toms, I like the sound of the san marzano for sauce as my wife makes the most amazing chutney/sauce. I think we have that variety here. Here's my blog from down under

October 31, 2017 1:39 AM


Post a Comment

<< Home