Heirloom « Tag

Posted on 06 March 2009 by tomatocasual.com

Black Tomatoes Continue to be Popular in 2009

black-tomatoBy Michelle Fabio

According to Gary Ibsen of TomatoFest, black tomatoes are again some of the most popular heirloom tomatoes for 2009.

Of the Top 10 most popular heirloom tomatoes, four are black–which aren’t actually black but various dark colors from deep purple to mahogany.

Black heirloom tomatoes have been gaining in popularity for the last six years and saw their best year in 2008.

Originally from the southern Ukraine, they can now be found all over the world and are especially desired among tomato growers in the United States.

Sweeter bi-colored tomatoes and various colored cherry Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted on 24 February 2009 by tomatocasual.com

One Man Who Turned His Heirloom Tomato Hobby Into a Business

texasBy Vanessa Richins

Keith Amelung, a landscaper by profession, started a heirloom tomato business after a hobby turned out to be profitable.

As the Boerne Star reports, “I wanted to go on a trip to Hawaii,” he said, “and I needed $1,000.

So I thought I’d do something organic, eclectic, at the Cibolo Nature Center (Mostly Native Plant) sale.

I planted 1,000 heirloom tomato seeds and sold the plants for Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted on 04 February 2009 by tomatocasual.com

Winter Has Driven Me Tomato Crazy

community-garden-introBy Vanessa Richins

I was planning to start a garden in the spring.

There would be sections where people could rent a plot to grow fresh vegetables.

There would be other areas where the vegetables produced would be given to food banks or sold at a farmer’s market. A children’s garden . . . the works.

A friend wanted to do the same sort of project, and it turned out she had permission to use a 6 acre plot of land. It was perfect!

As I have been waiting for spring to come, I find myself growing more impatient. I’ve dreamed of what I wanted to plant, and tomatoes were tops.

I came across an ad on eBay that made my eyes light up. For the low price of $8.50 shipped, I could get 1000+ heirloom tomato seeds in 60 varieties. The one catch was Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted on 21 January 2009 by tomatocasual.com

Bridging the Gap Between Heirlooms and Hybrids

By Vanessa Richinsheirloom-tomato

As anyone who visits Tomato Casual on a regular basis knows, we are very fond of the heirloom tomatoes.

These old-time beauties bring amazing colors and tastes that you simply won’t find in hybrid tomatoes.

Planting them also helps preserve tomato variety diversity and heritage.

However, one of the problems inherent in heirloom tomatoes is that they can be very susceptible to tomato diseases such as Verticillium wilt and tobacco mosaic virus. This is one of the main reasons that people choose to grow hybrid tomatoes.

However, did you know you can have the best of both worlds? All you have to do is graft your tomatoes. Use a hybrid rootstock to give heirloom tomatoes disease resistance.

A recent study confirmed that Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted on 05 December 2008 by tomatocasual.com

Waldingfield Food Company Producing Heirloom Tomato Sauces

By Vanessa Richins

The Waldingfield Farm in Washington, Connecticut, has seen a lot of crops since it was begun in the 1780s.

Since the late 1990s, the Horan brothers have been growing mainly tomatoes on this family farm.

This year’s crop was about 28,000 tomato plants, of 80 different heirloom varieties, though unfortunately yields were low due to blight and fungus from too much moisture.

Starting in 2006, the farm started making perishable products such as salad dressings and pesto.

Their main focus is producing a shelf stable heirloom tomato sauce. They experimented with many different kinds of Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted on 12 September 2008 by tomatocasual.com

Attack of the 4-pound Heirloom Tomatoes

By Michelle Fabio

As reported by Jennifer Amato in the North-South Brunswick Sentinel, one corner of New Jersey is being attacked by 4-pound heirloom tomatoes.

OK, maybe they are more like welcome guests in Jim and Lynn Nicoletti’s backyard, which holds three 8-foot tomato plants.

Two of the largest tomatoes have weighed 4 pounds and three and a half pounds.

Jim Nicoletti has a few secrets for growing such large heirlooms. One is about watering: “I realized if I stopped watering the plants and started watering the roots, they grow better.”

Another thing that helps his tomatoes is Read the rest of this entry »

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