Welcome All! I'm a dreamer, I hope you are too! A Posse ad Esse, or From possibility to reality, is a general state of mind. I hope you'll share your possibilities with me as I will with you. Namaste~

August 25, 2008

'Maters,'maters and oh yeah...more maters

Is there any fruit/veggie that more concisely epitomizes the desire of all summer gardeners that the tomato? Any one crop that can bring such joy or such heartache as this one? If there is, then I'm not aware of it. And this year I've had a bit of both. These ruddy beauties are the Hamson heirloom semi-determinant variety that I decided to try this year. They are both good and bad.
They are good in that, as you can see, they are fairly prolific. They are not an early tomato, so I did end up waiting a bit for these to start, but they have yielded pretty well so far. They are also great for salsas, sauces and such as they are meaty and moist, with thin skins. However, the down side is that one of the main areas that I wanted these to fill was our summer "italian night" dinners that we love to have. We cut some salami, and have toasted baguette with olive tapenade, mozerella and fresh tomato and basil with some olive oil and vinegar. It's a snackers paradise! These tomatoes did not fill this niche very well. They are good, but not as a slicing tomato. Almost every one has cracked severely on the top and/or has a scab on the bottom. These need to be cut out and do not make for good slicers. I do think I will grow them again, but strictly for canning and salsas.

My other source of much dismay has been this seeming beauty. Oh yeah, it's ripe, and clean and hopefully tasty (I just picked it tonight.) But it is one of just over a 1/2 doz tomatoes that set up on four different plants. Hardly what I would call a prolific bearer. It's a brandywine tomato, and it's my first year planting them. I've heard such good things about them that I really had high hopes. This year did not live up to them. On the up side though, I just picked it tonight and this one Tom alone, weighed in at just barely shy of a pound! Not bad.

And I thought on the 'mater subject I leave you with this question. How do you know when your hopelessly, helplessly addicted to vegetable gardening? Well, you know when you have a tomato plant growing in your office.
Yep, I'm that hooked. My name is P~ and I'm addicted to growing. This plant has a funny story too. I had an avocado plant starting late last year and brought this pot from home with some compost in it to use for transplanting. As it turns out, there was a volunteer plant in there just wanting to get out. Of course I let it go.

So, how are you tomatoes coming along? Are you nearing the end of your season yet? Planning anything to prolong it?

Good luck with these little suckers.


MeadowLark said...

Congrats! Those look great. I just got my first tomato today, but unfortunately, it hit 36 last night, so not sure I have that much longer to wait for ripening. :(

Sigh... my dream is to live in zone 6.

Mist said...

We're still waiting for our first Brandywine to ripen, but our yield is looking to be similar to yours. Not the most prolific tomato out there, but oh my! They're delicious!

Sandy said...

I've only had one little pear tomato ripen so far. It has just been too cold. I'm not an experienced tomato grower and basically just planted some different varieties I found at the store. I planted them in those upside down hanging planters. The plants are nice and big and I have a number of tomatoes, but ripening is taking awhile. I am considering moving the hanging baskets into the new greenhouse to see if that helps them along. Since I now have a greenhouse, I will research different varieties this winter and select some to grow from seed.

Sue said...

Great looking tomato! That scar, or split that is on the side, do you know what that is? I have these on my pear tomatoes, and while it does not look like bug damage, I am wondering if it is a split from too much water. What are your thoughts? Thanks!

Anonymous said...

My tomato's just started coming up last week. Glad i'm not the only one with late bloomers

earth heart said...

I've grown Brandywines for the past two years. They are by far the latest maters to come on and ripen. They will begin yielding better, just not as prolifically as some. I grow these mainly for slicing as they really have that old fashioned mater flavor. My Cherokee Purple are far more prolific and good slicers as well. Sweeter and juicier, too. I use them for juice and grow Marglobe and Amish Paste for canning as well. But, the Brandywines are the favorite for flavor so I will always have a few in the garden.