I know. Such a tease.
These jewels are from my garden last year. I was able to grow them from seed, and really figure out what varieties I like to grow. This year, I have plant starts that I got from the Langley Farms stand at my local farmer's market. I can't recommend farmer's markets enough for plant starts, they are healthy and are on the cheaper side! A tip if you want good pickings: go as soon as it opens.
I'll be sure to update you with the progress in the garden on the blog and through Instagram, and give some tips that I've figured out over the years being an urban gardener. To start, let's dive into the tomato varieties I've chosen to grow in my garden, and why knowing what indeterminate and determinate means will help you with spacing.
INDETERMINATE - Varieties that grow tall like a hearty vine, reaching heights on average of 6 feet. They need a lot of support, or risk snapping from their own weight. There are many ripening cycles so that you are able to harvest multiple times in the season. To remember what an indeterminate plant will look like, think of the first letter: tall like the “I”.
DETERMINATE - Varieties that grow like a bush, reaching on average height of 4 feet. The height stops once the blossoms start to form. The fruit generally ripens all at the same time, so you have a huge harvest at the end of the season. To remember what a determinate plant will look like, think of the first letter: round like a “D”.
Here are my tomato choices which are based on taste and ease of growing. By the way, these are all indeterminate.
These heirlooms always win with taste for me and my husband, who is isn’t the biggest fan of tomatoes. The flavor is really prominent, and is perfect for the classic white bread-mayo-tomato sammich. The fruit is hearty with a dark pink/light purple skin. Because of the tomatoe’s weight, you’ll want to make sure you give the plant ample support.
These golden beauties are new to my garden this year, but I have hunted the plant starts for years without any luck. This year, I scored. The flavor is intensely sweet and a perfect size for salads and pasta dishes. They are super popular in these neck of the woods.
These are also sweet, but what I love about them the most is how easy they are to grow. The fruit is small, but they grow in long clusters, so your harvest is plentiful. The clusters are perfect for roasting whole on the vine. Last year this plant kept producing fruit for me all they way up to October!
This is another newbie in my garden this year. They have “meaty” flesh and small amount of seeds, which is why they are perfect for drying, roasting and making sauce. Roma’s are their cousin and are more common to find, but San Marzano’s have a slightly different taste. Hey, if Lidia Bastianich is a fan, they must be good.