bbmc@retirementpartner.c

 

A Few of Laurel's Favorites

People often ask, " Laurel, let's say you are about to be stranded on a deserted island, your canoe is taking on water, and you have to swim to shore. You have 1 minute to grab your swim fins, snorkel, some garden tools, books, your shades, a case of wine, your dog, and 10 tomato seed varieties from among the hundreds you always have in your pockets. Which ones would you choose?"

"How about 25?", says I.

 

   A Guide to the Symbols

(H)  Hybrid. The few hybrids we list were developed with great flavor as the main criterion. These are delicious varieties which we have grown and taste-tested to ensure superior flavor.

 

(D)  Determinate. Also known as 'bush' varieties, these plants are great for container growing or for your small garden. They reach a certain predetermined height and then stop growing. Most of the fruit is borne over a 4 to 6 week period.

 

  Our Sunshine Symbol means this variety grows beautifully in all climates, and does especially well in sustained high heat but not hotter than 95º. Pollen normally becomes sterile above 95º

 

  Extra heat tolerant.

   A specialty plant, developed to produce consistently in very hot weather, up to 97º- 98º.

 

    Our Penguin Symbol means this variety grows beautifully in all climates, and does especially well in cooler temperatures and produces late into the cool season.

 

    Grows beautifully in most climates and is extra cold tolerant. However, this does not mean North Dakota in winter. Your tomato plants need night temperatures consistently above 50º F.

 

(E) Early ripening variety, with 78 days or less to ripe tomatoes.

 

(VE) Very early varieties, usually less than 68 days from plant-out to ripe fruit.

 

(EE) Extremely early ripening varieties, ready to pick in only 45-60 days from planting.

 

  A good choice for growing in pots, and a variety which Laurel has already grown successfully in containers. Any heirloom tomato plant will grow well in a large 18 - 30 gallon container with proper growing techniques and the dwarf varieties can be grown in 5 -10 gallon containers. 

See detailed container-growing info:  Growing Tips  

 

(Ch) A cherry tomato. These little fruits can be red, black, orange, pink, purple, green, yellow, ivory, white or bicolor and in varying shapes: round, pear, grape, ping pong, pea-sized and plum-shaped.

 

(B)  A big tomato of at least 1 or 2 pounds.

 

(BB) A really big tomato. These 'super braggers' can reach 3 to 4 pounds.

 

(BBB) A ridiculously huge tomato, these prize winning giants can reach more than 5 lbs.

 

(SM) A small plant, great for containers or smaller garden spaces.

 

(VSM) A very small, dwarf type plant for small containers and tiny gardens.

 

(P-S) Paste or sauce type, especially popular for sauces. These tomatoes are richly flavored, ideal for cooking because flavors increase exponentially during the cooking process, and are also marvelous for fresh eating.

 

(HG) For your Historical or Heritage Garden. These are storied tomatoes with a fascinating history, including  well-known historic varieties, some of them named after persons of high renown, or an historical event. Some are tomatoes with tall tales and legends attached to their names. Many have simply stood the test of time.

 

Days: Approximate time from planting the seedling to harvesting the ripe fruit. I note the number of days to ripening in my garden. Can vary from climate to climate.

 

New for 2021 This means we are offering these varieties this year for the first time. Not necessarily a 'new' variety.

 

 

My Top 20

'Stranded On A Deserted Island' Favorites

 

 

   

 

Paul Robeson ($6.95
)
(VE)  (HG)       65-70 days.

 

This is my all-time favorite tomato and our top seller for 22 years.

 

It is a gorgeous, dark and dusky-hued fruit with intensely sweet earthy taste with a hint of tanginess, a luscious velvety smooth texture, beautiful skin, rich with juice and high production. You will love it. The seed was made available by Marina Danilenko, a Moscow seedswoman. 

 

This luxurious tomato is named for Paul Robeson (1898-1976), the elegant, renowned and charismatic operatic singer, law school graduate, champion athlete, film star, stage actor and boundlessly brave champion of civil and personal rights throughout the world. This marvelous plant will give you its perfect 3" - 4" fruit in only 65 days from planting. Incredible; a symphony. I do believe this is the finest tomato in existence.  

 

 

 

  Jutland, in MY TOP 3! 

Jutland ($6.95
)
   (E) 70 days. (Pronounced Jut-land or Yoot-lahn)

 

Along with Dirty Girl, Jutland is my new 'go to' variety for the best dang tomato for BLT's and any fresh eating. A perfect 3 to 5 ounce, thin-skinned, plum shaped, brilliant red tomato, some smooth, some with a pointed tip and the most sublime flavor we've found in a tomato this season. I keep saying " Where have you been all my life?"

 

It appears in several different shapes on the same plant -- some very elongated, some short and plump, and, as with many tomatoes of this shape, the foliage is rather wispy.

 

Sliced into 'coins' or halved lengthwise, it is my new favorite for salads, sandwiches and cooking. True story.

 

Juicy, sweet, tangy, delicious, thin, very tender skin and old-fashioned tomato flavor make Jutland a must-grow for the most dedicated and adventuresome heirloom tomato fans.


Can be used for sauce, yes. I'd recommend this one for fresh eating.

 

 

 

New for 2020!

 

Anthony's Passionate Heart ($6.95)     

 

Big, red heart shaped 1 lb. fruits on a plant that withstands every type of weather. A marvelous tomato with rich, bold, fruity-sweet flavors and a perfect balance of acidity.

 

This is our premier presentation for 2020 in honor of Tony's legacy: Food will always bring families, neighborhoods, cities and countries together, gathered at the table.  Nothing to fight about, everything to love.

 

In our garden it kept producing through prolonged heat waves in the high 90's when other plants gave up the ghost. Now it continues to grow as cooler weather arrives. No cracking, high production, dreamy texture, disease free. A real winner.

 

In the words of Gary Ibsen of Tomatofest who developed it, "Anthony Bourdain was an American celebrity chef and author who explored the cuisines, culture, joys and essentials of human existence around the world. He was an icon to me, and many others, who love food and cooking as a most enjoyable way of gathering people together to celebrate our humanity."

 

Seeds are available here:  Go toTomatofest.com

 

 

Best of the Blues...

Helsing Junction Blues ($6.95) 78 days

This strangely gorgeous fruit has won high fives and stunned looks in our test gardens. "Is that a plum?"

Clusters of delicious 2 to 3 ounce tomatoes salad tomatoes (not a cherry) with high production and disease resistance. Please give it a grow, highly recommended by me!

When Helsing Junction Blues are ripe, they have an intense, regal sweetness and enough balancing acid to make them the PERFECT tomato with rich flavors we love in the dark-fleshed varieties.

The gel and flesh turn turn deepest crimson when completely ripe. The flesh is really satisfying to bite into! Perfect and firm, not soft. Created by my old buddy Tom Wagner, he named it for Helsing Junction Farm in the Chehalis River Valley of Washington. 

The leaves curl genetically, so don't freak out and over-water or under-water them. These slightly curled leaves let more sunlight reach the fruits, turning them really  deep indigo. Looks awesome.

 

 

 

  Rare and Delightful!

Thunder Mountain ($7.95) 80 days       

This big, stunning10 to 14 ounce beefsteak tomato was developed by Lee Goodwin of J & L Gardens. As the colors developed, they reminded Lee of the sun setting through thunder clouds in New Mexico.

With fruits ripening from deep gold to reddish-orange -- and all the other stormy sunset colors -- he called it Thunder Mountain.  

The flavors are rich, sweet, bold and beautifully balanced, reflecting its marvelous parent lines of Cherokee Purple, Big Rainbow and Bosque Blue.

Not a huge plant, Thunder Mountain grows on a compact vine and produces excellent crops of 10-14 oz., big-shouldered, orange-red-gold tomatoes with deep stormy-ocean blue around the stem and faint yellow streaking here and there. Grows easily everywhere.

J & L Gardens is in New Mexico's Rio Grande Valley where they grow tomatoes, cucumbers, melons, apples and all kinds of specialty crops for restaurants and Farmers' Markets.

 

 

 

 

   

Momotaro Gold ($8.95) (H) 60 to 70 days

 

STOP THE PRESSES!!  This is my new favorite tomato! A stunning summer surprise with scads of 6 to 8 ounce treasures.

 

A very reliable tomato friend told me how fabulous this tomato tasted. "Seriously, Laurel, you gotta grow Momotaro Gold!"

 

So I got seeds and grew out 5 plants in the summer. I watched them grow and ripen, fascinated as they transformed into deeper and deeper shades of gold.

 

Picked the first ripe one in early September with high hopes. Folks, I was blown away. Probably one of the top 10 finest flavored tomatoes... Of. My. Life.

 

Every fruit, perfection. Texture is meaty, silky, not soft or mushy, just perfection. I kept saying."Oh my god. Oh my god." At some point, this marvelous flavor got me to thinking, (hmmm), if Sun Gold was a big tomato, it would taste Just Like This.

 

And so many tomatoes!  Growing on a medium sized plant, not a huge plant, they produced dozens of clusters of gorgeous fruits glimmering in the sun and are still going now, in October!

 

 

 

Here is our premier variety for 2022!

Polish  ($6.95) 75 - 85 days.

 

As many of you know, when I am selecting varieties for your garden, I have thousands of heirlooms to consider. It takes me months and often years to grow out and test these tomatoes until I'm sure you get only the best from me.

 

My criteria are:

 

Fabulous flavor, excellent texture, reliable production and gorgeousness.

 

This is our premier variety for 2022.  Huge, brick red to dark pink, heavy 1 to 3 lb. fruits growing in extraordinary clusters of 3 to 5 huge tomatoes, all with superb flavor.

 

Polish are sweet, rich, meaty and juicy with exquisite flavors. Just breathtaking.

 

There are many heirloom tomatoes with 'Polish' in their names. But I have chosen for you the classic Polish. Don't miss it. You will love me for it.

 

This beautiful, disease resistant, potato leafed plant gets big! Give it extra support -- when it's loaded with tomatoes it will be heavy and unruly.

 

 

 

  

Ukrainian Heart ($6.95) 75 - 80 days

Ukrainian Heart is an outstanding tomato! A big, deep pink heart with creamy, dense, meaty texture. The flavor is lovely and sweet -- but deeply elaborate -- not mild. Very complex with the perfect balance of acid to sweet. And, like most oxhearts, it has very few seeds.

Produces large, 10-20 oz., pink, heart-shaped fruit with high shoulders and few seeds. Refreshing, juicy, well-balanced, fruity flavors.

The plant is large and sprawling. It produces a great crop in only about 78 days and has shown good disease resistance.

My friend, Heirloom Guru Craig Le Houllier got these seeds from Tania O'Neill. They had been grown by her family in Ukraine for many years. 

Ukrainian Heart definitely has earned a spot in your garden.

 

 

 

 

Apricot Brandywine ($6.95) 80 days.

These fabulous tomatoes are a perfect golden/apricot color -- not yellow -- and grow huge!  Up 1½ pounds in clusters of 4 or 5 huge tomatoes on rugged potato-leafed plants.

Apricot Brandywine produces a lot more tomatoes than the other Brandywines, much more than I've ever seen on other Brandywine plants except Brandywine OTV and the taste is unforgettable. Just incredible.

One of my favorite qualities of Apricot Brandywine is that the stunning, meaty flesh inside is exactly the same color of the skin when you cut it open, or just take a giant chomp! WOW! Mind blowing.

This plant has strong thick sturdy stems.  It really has to have stems like this to support all of the huge fruits! Be sure to give it a strong cage like Our TomatOH Holders, to help it stay up!

We think it originated from Great Britain some 30 years ago, the actual origin is unknown, but I'm researching it!

 

 

 

Aunt Ruby's German Green ($6.95
)        (B) (E)75-78 days.

You're going to love this beautiful Tennessee tomato. Medium to large, sweet beefsteaks, bursting with a fragrant, complex, spicy-sweetness with a touch of tang.

A gorgeous green-when-ripe color with a delicate pink blush inside, this much sought after variety is a real treat to have in your garden, and is said to be the very best tasting green. Reaching up to one pound, Aunt Ruby's German Green grows in clusters of 2 or 3.

With its intricate, earthy, unforgettable flavor and chartreuse flesh this one will broaden your tomato horizons. Top favorite of our friend and long-time customer Tom Wopat. Very adaptable, and easy to grow with good disease resistance. From Ruby Arnold of Greeneville, Tennessee who passed away in 1997.

 

 

German Johnson ($6.95) 85 days (BB) Up to 2 lbs!

A huge, prolific plant originally from Virginia and the Carolinas. Grown for more than 75 years, it is one of the four parent lines of Radiator Charlie's Mortgage Lifter; the flavor is enchanting.

If you've ever wondered what tomato might embody the legendary, classic flavor profile of all that is Heirloom Tomatoness, this is your huckleberry.

Most of the old-time German tomatoes, including German Johnson, Old German, German Queen, German Giant and more, are not from Germany but from Mennonite farms in the Southern United States. German Johnson is the quintessential old-time Mennonite tomato.

Smooth skin, no cracking or splitting, the big, leafy, robust plants produce huge, gorgeous pink 1 to 2 lb. beefsteak type tomatoes. A creamy texture, sweet and luscious, along with high production make German Johnson a top tier choice in your heirloom garden. Similar to Brandywine Pink but produces much more heavily, easily 10 times more than Brandywine.

A hugely popular farmers' market tomato. A wonderful sandwich tomato with good disease resistance. German Johnson is a winner in every garden.

 

 

 

 

 

Green Giant ($6.95
) (E) (B)      60-70 days.

 

On a flavor scale of 1 to 100, Green Giant is a resounding 100 + Incredible. Unforgettable.  The flavor can be described as rich, intoxicating and intense.

 

Occasionally a tomato comes along which deserves very special attention. This big, up to 2 lb., green when ripe tomato resoundingly stole the show in 4 different tomato tastings.

 

We had the immense pleasure of tasting it at TomatoFest in Carmel, California where it captured the hearts of tasters and garnered a great deal of attention. I have not been this impressed by a tomato since discovering Brown Derby in 2007.

 

It arose originally in the garden of Reinhard Kraft of Germany in 2000 when he planted 30 seeds called 'Green Giant' from a friend in Canada. 29 of them grew out regular leafed except for one which had big potato leafed foliage. Reinhard cultivated that one, selecting the best fruit for several seasons, and continued to save seeds. Yay, Reinhard.  

 

NOTE:  How to tell if a green tomato is ripe and not just an unripe fruit?  Close your eyes and feel it; if it's soft, it's ripe.

 

 

Gregori's Altai TFEST
Gregori's Altai  (PRON: Gre GO ri's or Gregory's ALL-tie) ($6.95) 70 days  Early Ripening!

This rare and splendid heirloom from the beautiful Altai Mountain Range of Mongolia produces big, 4'', purplish-red, 8-10 oz. fruits with fabulous, big-flavored sweetness.

Smooth dense meaty flesh is so easy to slice and gobble up. Big plant, heavy production, ripe in only 70 days from plant out in warm weather.

I've spent some time trying to find out who Gregori is/was so we can give him his props for bringing this outstanding variety to us!

Thank you Gregori!!

 

 

 

    

Black Mamba ($6.95) 78 days      (B) 

New to our list this season, Black Mamba is a big, bodacious, purple/black beefsteak tomato. Elaborate smoky flavor with touch of sassy tang make this one an irresistible delight for your tomato garden.

A natural 'surprise' cross of Lucky Cross with an unknown black variety-- from the size and flavor my guess is Carbon -- Black Mamba's flavor is enticing, rich, sweet and luscious. Your plants will produce big crops of stunning, irresistible tomatoes. Really meaty and full-flavored, this is also a fabulous fresh eating and sauce tomato.

Another treat from the garden of the late, beloved, old-timey tomato grower Millard Murdock.

 

 

 

 

 

Red Mamba ($6.95) 80 days.

 

In a patch of Black Mamba plants, we were stunned to see several plants producing huge, gorgeous, deep red and pink 2 pound tomatoes!

 

"I remember saying, "What are you guys doing here?"

 

The flavor was heavenly! Classic old time rich yummy tomatoes with a fabulous mouth feel, flavors that explode in  your mouth!

 

Made the best dang tomato sandwich I ever had. I don't know if the tomatoes had crossed last season or if this was a spontaneous color mutation or what?

 

But we loved it so much we grew them out, saved seeds and here it is for you: Red Mamba!

 

 

The World’s Darkest Tomato!

Black Beauty ($6.95
) 85 days.      

Beautiful to look at, the flavor of Black Beauty is deep, rich and complex. Combined in a tomato salad with red, orange and yellow tomatoes - a real mind-blower! Be sure and wait for true ripeness! Black beauty takes a while to ripen but is definitely worth the wait.

These photographs are from our home garden and have not been retouched. The fruits and the stems are deep dark indigo-black. Inside, blood red. The first photo is a not quite ripe fruit, the second and third photos show the color change indicating ripeness.

So dark that some tomatoes turn solid blue-black on the skin. Deep red flesh is among the best tasting of all tomatoes. Rich, smooth and savory with earthy tones.

A dark, meaty, very rich-fleshed tomato with extreme anthocyanin effect, the same antioxidant in blueberries and blackberries. The emerging little fruits are deep black from the time they are tiny until big and almost ripe, then you will see some color changes as you can see in the photographs.

Keeps well on the vine and stores very well, and the flavor improves with room-temperature storage.

Baker Creek's Dave Kaiser tasted it at the 2015 National Heirloom Exposition and proclaimed it as the BEST tomato he had ever eaten! Yay Dave!

 

 

    Huge and smooth, delicious tropical flavors!

 

Great White ($6.95
)
75 days

 

Never tried a white tomato?  Don't let this unusual color fool you!  And don't let Uncle Louie tell it's too weird...

 

Hands down, these 1 to 3 pound giants with creamy white fruit have some of the best tomato flavors you'll ever find. I guarantee it. And I know my tomatoes. 

 

I want HUGE, mind-blowing flavor in my tomatoes! If you do too, then this is your huckleberry.

 

Some of the white tomatoes are mild, which some folks like. Not me! Great White has killer flavor. The Goddess of the Big Whites.

 

Delicious fruits, refreshing with tropical overtones of fresh-cut pineapple, melon, juicy mango, honey and sweet lime.

 

Starting out glossy ivory and turning to palest moonlight gold when ripe, it will still feel firm with a pink blush on the bottom--that's how you know it's ripe!

 

Early ripening tomatoes, set fruit in high heat, with excellent disease resistance, fantastic flavor.

 

But Beware! The abundant fruit set makes for a heavy plant so use sturdy cages; you will need extra support for these guys.

 

Wee Tang Shebang (Dwarf plant) ($6.95
) 55 - 60 days

 

Another dazzling heirloom from legendary tomato breeder Tom Wagner.

 

Although I don't know if Sun Gold is in its parent line, if you love Sun Gold, this is the plant for you!

 

I would describe Wee Tang Shebang as  a petite plant, not technically from the Dwarf Tomato Project, but a dwarf plant nonetheless. Producing scads of gorgeous golden-orange tomatoes with all the dazzling flavor of Sun Gold, it's a small plant, about 2 to 3 ft tall and covered with tomatoes.

 

Ellie Pong of Bunny Hop Seeds sent me a sample of this one a couple of years ago.  Adrienne loved the name and grew out some plants in our nursery. When it started producing I asked her, "Hey, what the heck is that?" She said, "Look at the label, Mom."

 

The flavor is SO good, I chose it over any other dwarf golden-yellow-orange cherry plants. A thousand times tastier. Crack resistant.

 

(Of the 30 in Adrienne's photograph, only one cracked! (YAY!)

 

You will love the high production in clusters of 8 to 10 fruits. So easy to grow, small yet indeterminate, grows and grows and grows for the whole season, starting early!

 

Disease resistant, produces right up until frost without losing any of its marvelous flavor.

 

 

 

    

 

Black Krim ($6.95
)
75 days (E)  

 

This much sought after Russian variety is unique and unforgettable, originally from Krim on the Black Sea in the former Soviet Union, Black Krim has a superb smoky sweetness with a delicate lingering touch of tang in a 4-6" slightly flattened, mahogany-colored fruit with lovely, deep green shoulders. Just superb and very easy to grow.

 ©  Photo property of Damon Webber, used here with he is gracious permission

 

 

 

Brandywine OTV ($6.95
)
 (B) (E)  72 days. 

A truly marvelous stand-out member of the great family of Brandywines, this one arose in Craig LeHoullier's garden years ago. Big one-pound red fruits with orange shoulders and complex rich flavors. An outstanding tomato for your garden; it also sets fruit very well during high temperatures and bears all season. 

A reliable producer, very disease resistant, and easy to grow; OTV stands for Off The Vine, which was a wonderful online tomato newsletter published by Carolyn Male and Craig LeHoullier.  They describe this tomato as "the best strain of Brandywine set apart from others by its smooth, creamy, almost buttery texture, and harmonious sweet flavor."

 

 

  

Brown Derby ($6.95
) 75 to 80 days.
 

 

My absolute favorite discovery of 2007, no contest. Combining the sweet succulence of the black tomatoes and the tangy spiciness of the greens, this is a spectacular cross of my all-time favorite, Paul Robeson, and the legendary Aunt Ruby's German Green.

 

Reaching up to 2 lbs., yhe flavor is tantalizing--tart and sweet, a perfect combination of tang to sweetness with plenty of juice and a rapturous brown and green color.

 

Elser's Brown Derby has become a much sought after favorite at Maria and Darrell's Farmer's Market stands where customers arrive early to get their hands on one of these treasures. I had to scramble to get this one. True story. I picked it up, another customer begged me for it; I did not budge, wouldn't give it up. I wanted it for the photograph because it was so beautiful. Then we ate it. A Laurel's exclusive.

 

 (This fruit is not related to Tom Wagner's Brown Derby line, arose independently from that line and was named without knowledge of it.)

 

 

 

   

Cherokee Purple ($6.95
)
(HG) (E) 75 days.

A legendary and beautiful tomato, at least 100 years old and said to be grown by the Cherokee People. 12 oz. deep dark dusky rose-purple, deep red inside, with sweet, rich and smoky, luscious flavor. 

Cherokee Purple is a garden staple, in everyone's favorite list for a good reason-- disease resistant, reliable and easy to grow, and great one for your heirloom or heritage garden. 

Seeds were sent to Craig Lehoullier by JD Green of Tennessee who got them from a neighbor whose family had grown them for more than 100 years. 

In 1990 Craig named it Cherokee Purple. 

  

 

 

   

Dirty Girl  ($6.95
)
     (E) Only 60 days.

 

I am crazy about the name of this incredibly delicious, high producing, open-pollinated version of Early Girl!  It was de-hybridized by Joe Schirmer, owner of Dirty Girl Produce in Santa Cruz California. An organic grower, Joe spent the last 7 years growing out Early Girl into an open-pollinated version of Early Girl -- what we call a 'new' heirloom.

 

Dirty Girl produces in only 60 to 65 days, giving you huge harvests of perfect, yummy, 3 to 4 ounce salad size, red tomatoes with all the great qualities of Early Girl -- high production, early ripening and strong plants, with some added attractions for gardeners-- an far richer flavor and a bonus; you can save seeds!

 

Joe named it 'Dirty Girl' after his wife with whom he created Dirty Girl Farm. Yay Joe! 

 

If you've got a wife, mother, daughter, girlfriend or girl pal who spends a lot of time in the garden, this is the tomato for her. My customers love getting this one as a gift for their Dirty Girl Gardeners!

 

Surprise your Dirty Girl! 

 

 

 

Marianna's Peace ($6.95
) 80 days. (B) (HG)      

 

One of our top 3 sellers. The sugary nectar of this huge 5 inch tomato's creamy, dense, red flesh is intensely rich, with perfect sweet-acid balance and sublime, complex flavors reminiscent of the finest of the "old-fashioned" tomato flavors.  This big, beautiful irresistible 1-2 lb. deep red fruit is the talk of the tomato world and has found its way into Top 10 favorite tomato lists of gourmands worldwide. It is perfection. Supply is limited, please order early. 

 

It is said that Marianna's Peace is among the 3 finest tasting tomatoes in existence.

Marianna was from a family of farmers in Bohemia, Czechoslovakia. During World War II, in May of 1945 when she was 17, Russian soldiers came to her school and forced Marianna and all her schoolmates into a truck to be taken to Siberia. During the journey, she and a few others escaped by jumping from the moving truck, but Marianna was shot in the leg just as she crossed the Czech border. With the help of her friends, she was able to continue on to the town of Weiden, Bavaria. She lost all contact with her parents and brothers for the next ten years, but after a long and diligent search with the aid of The Red Cross, she finally found them in 1955. 

Before he died, her father gave her a little bundle of the seeds. 

Marianna married, and in 1957 moved to Washington State with her husband where they raised four children.

The legacy of these seeds reaches back to the early 1900's and year after year the tomatoes borne from this marvelous heirloom continue to be treasured for their outstanding taste and beauty. Incredibly sweet, creamy, with dense red flesh, rich and luscious, reminiscent of the finest of those "old-fashioned" tomato flavors, the memories of which are the stuff of dreams for all tomato lovers. 

 

Laurel's Top Pick

Ruby Gold  (Sometimes called Gold Medal but Ruby Gold is the original name. ) ($6.95
) 
     85 days.

 

A stunning beauty with thrilling, sweet tropical flavors, this was my hands-down favorite for 2016. I could not be without it.

 

Ruby Gold has gigantic flavor, rivaling Cherokee Purple and Brandywine -- it may be as good as Paul Robeson. Cut it open, take a bite and prepare to have your mind blown.

 

Awesome color, huge flavor,  gorgeous and delicious. So prolific! I am getting dozens of tomatoes from one plant in a 30 gallon SmartPot.

 

I have a special fondness for the multi-hued tomatoes because-- well, look at thisw thing! When I see the multi colored tomatoes on plants ripening into rainbow hues I get lusciously gaga. 

 

First offered to American gardeners in 1921 by John Lewis Childs seed company in New York, Ruby Gold was rediscovered in West Virginia in 1967 by the legendary Ben Quisenberry. Craig LeHoullier got seeds in 1987 from John Hartman of Indiana, and here it is...for you.

 

 

 

Tati's Wedding ($6.95
) 80 days.
     

 

Tati is short for Tatiana. This big luscious beauty -- the most flavorful variety I've come across this season and my top pick for 2017, was discovered by my customer Dan Stein of New York as he drove through the Kazbek mountains in the Caucasus of Russia. He was there on a special day, his friend Tatiana's wedding, when he stopped at a roadside produce stand and discovered this fabulous tomato.

 

The farmer had not name it, so Dan called it Kazbegi Red. After hearing this beautiful story, I couldn't resist naming it for Tatiana, whose nickname is Tati. 

 

These tomatoes are luscious, meaty and silky with big sweetness and just enough tang to make it the perfect all purpose tomato and one of the juiciest I've ever found.

 

So productive, you'll get dozens of delicious tomatoes in varying sizes and shapes on the same plant, from 5 oz. up to 16 oz. or more.  This is one of the most delightful traits of the heirloom tomatoes.

 

The tomato in the photograph weighed 16 ounces and was grown this season by my customer and friend Barbara Kraus of Rancho Palos Verdes, CA. After our Tati's Wedding plants were demolished by rampaging raccoons, Barb came to my rescue and grew out some plants in her garden.

Without Barb we would not have any photographs or seeds or plants of this incredible for you!  Yay, Barb!

 

 

 Early Ripening!

Thorburn's Terra Cotta (Pronounced THOR-burns) ($6.95)    68 days. A Laurel's Favorite, and ripens in only 65 to 68 days from planting

We were so excited to be able to present Terra Cotta as our premier variety for 2021. Everybody loved it!

It's hard to know where begin in describing this extremely rare treasure with its incredible flavor, color and history!

Introduced more than 120 years ago, in 1893, by James Thorburn of New York, this is one of the most sensational tomatoes we have ever grown. With honey-brown skin, apricot colored flesh, and a beautiful green seed gel, this is a stunning tomato with out-of-this-world flavor.

Producing heavily during the early season for fresh eating, sandwiches, salads and right out-of-hand, Terra Cotta is also great for cooking! Roasted, sauced, fresh from the garden--you name it.

 

 New for 2021!

Wild Fred (Dwarf Plant) ($6.95)       A Laurel's Favorite

Lots of big gorgeous purple/black tomatoes grow in abundance on a strong, stocky 3 to 4 ft. dwarf plant. Disease resistant and producing big crops of large yummy tomatoes in all kinds of weather, the flavor is outstanding.

Heavy in your hand, this juicy, beefsteak type fruits grow to 6 to 10 ounces with thin skin and the deep, smoky, juicy, aromatic flesh you find in Carbon which is one of its parent lines (along with New Big Dwarf).

This big, tasty variety was named by Craig LeHoullier, for his dad Wilfred after a memorable typo of Wilfred's name in a church bulletin.

A fabulous cross made in 2005 by Bruce Bradshaw in California.

For descriptions and photographs of all our tomato varieties, please click here:

  Our Tomato Varieties

For detailed growing information and Laurel's favorite organic gardening products, click here:

Growing Tips

"You need more tomatoes."©...Laurel    

All original materials, photos and copy contained herein are protected by copyright 2022 and are the sole property of Laurel's Heirloom Tomato Plants