Wednesday, August 24, 2011

T is for Tomato and U is for Update

T is also for twofer, and for thank god because this is really exhausting.

I'm participating in two tomato growing projects this year:
  • I'm saving 3 kinds of tomato seeds for the Populuxe seed bank- Bramki (a very meaty slicing tomato), Ferris Wheel (slicers) and Blondkopfchen (a golden cherry)
  • I'm growing German Pink tomatoes for the One Heirloom Project
I also work on adapting tomatoes to my own backyard. I've got my stalwart Black Krim (on its 10th year now and looking great); on their 3rd year- Stupice, and in just their second two new varieties- Goldman's Italian American, and San Marzanos (from seedlings developed by Chicago Botanic Garden), plus I'm trying to decide if I want to keep going with the Heirlooms Golds (don't know the variety). They had a tough year.

Bramki: A real keeper, as I've said before. I've got a good start on seed saving, but would like one more good looking fruit before I call it a day. These got a little stressed from the horrible Blondkopfchen next door (see next), but it's a killer tomato-big, juicy, delicious and also very beautiful.

Blondkopfchen. Never. Again. Hideously blight-prone, leggy, slow. Flavor nice, but nothing to replace a good Sungold. I saved seeds, but I'm loathe to add them to the seed bank because I don't want anyone to grow these. I finally took it out because it was infecting the nearby Bramkis which I don't want to lose. Unfortunately, I also had to take out the sungold, not because it was blighty, but it just stopped setting flowers, so I had all this leggy growth and no fruit. Weird.

Ferris Wheel: Nice, but not great flavor, tendency to very large, easily bruised fruit. Reasonably prolific considering it's not adapted to local conditions. But I don't think I'll be able to devote space to this guy again.

The German Pink is still trying to keep up, and has finally managed to set a fruit. Just one.


  1. I actually like the flavor of Blondkopfchen though it is a bit rag-tag. (This is the first year I'm growing it and all my tomatoes are a bit rag-tag, so I didn't know how representative it was!) For heirloom cherries I really like 'Snow White' and 'Brown Berry.' If you're set on a yellow one (technically bicolor), then I'd be all over 'Gajo de Melon.'

  2. Flavor is fine. Plant is a nightmare.