We grew 6 varieties of tomatoes this year. This is not unusual, we have grown as many as 14 varieties in a single season.
Why so many? The answer is simple…I’m on a quest for the perfect tomato!
The views expressed in this post are just my opinion! Someone else’s perfect tomato may be one of my rejects and vise-versa.
Anyway, here we go with my review of the tomatoes growing in our garden this year.
Starting from the top left,we have ‘Red Grape”, a small tomato that grows on a “truss”, (a stem-like structure that supports all the tomatoes as they grow). They are small, about the size of a large green grape you see in the produce section of a grocery store. These are very sweet. I have had a lot of non-tomato eaters say that they won’t eat any tomato, but will eat this one. One such person I know ate nearly a quart of these in one day and made herself sick on them they tasted so good!
Next, in the upper middle, we have ‘Tomatoberry” also a truss tomato. This variety was featured in a previous post a few months back. It is a new variety offered exclusively by Johnny’s Selected Seeds. Tomatoberry is also quite sweet but not nearly as sweet as ‘Red Grape’, having more of a “tomato flavor”. It is bigger than Tomatoberry but still can be considered a salad tomato.
To the right is ‘Juliet’ a salad/pear tomato. Juliet is right at the line between salad tomato and “pear” tomato. It is about 2″-3″ long , which makes it a little big to be served in a salad, but too small to be considered a size good for slicing. Never mind the size though, it is one tasty tomato.. not too sweet, with lots of tomato flavor!
Next, on the lower left, is ‘Italian Heirloom’. It is, as you have guessed by its name, an heirloom variety. Now, I have grown many heirloom varieties in the past… some good, some not-so-good. I put this one in the not-so-good category. It has a very mild flavor, which some people like, but for my taste, it is a bit of a “washout”. This tomato is very fragile, its skin is quite thin and easily damaged. It is also difficult to harvest from the vine, its stem being nearly impossible to separate from the plant without bruising the tomato. Because of these two characteristics, you will never see these for sale in the grocery store.
In the bottom center of the photo is “Amish Paste” another heirloom variety. Despite its second place showing at a taste-test, it too seems a little bland for my palate. Once again however, enough taste-testers liked it to give it second place. It may make good juice and sauce. Like the Italian tomato, it too is very fragile, bruising easily. You wouldn’t want to just “toss” these into your bushel basket!
Finally, we come to “Better Girl”. In my opinion, the best tomato we have this year. It is full flavored, easy to pick, holds up well in transport and looks marvelous! The skin is a little tough, which accounts for the east of picking and transport. Better Girl also grows great in our greenhouse through the winter, making it the best all round tomato this season.
Don’t take my word for it though, it’s only an opinion. Grow some of these for yourself next time!