Medium Size Red Tomatoes
Anna Russian ($6.25) (VE) (HG)65 days. This was the very first heirloom tomato I ever tasted and one of the finest of the oxheart tomatoes. The plant has very delicate, wistful foliage as do many of the Russian varieties. Don't let that fool you! Anna is easy to grow and bears heavily during hot and cool weather.
Years ago my mom brought me some perfect heart-shaped Anna Russians from her garden. She had gotten the seeds from a friend. I tasted; I swooned. From 8 to 12 ounces, the fruits she brought had grown in beautiful clusters of 2 or 3--I wouldn't be without it.
Still in my top 5 favorites after all these years, Anna Russian is always among the first few plants I set out in my home garden every spring in a little Tomato Love ceremony. Its perfect heart shape in colors ranging from pink to red make it very special indeed.
Anna Russian seeds came to Craig Lehoullier from Brenda Hillenius of Oregon, who got the seeds from her grandfather, Kenneth Wilcox. Years earlier he had been given the original seeds from a Russian immigrant friend--a genuine example of the intriguing history these grand old tomatoes carry with them.
NOTE: Be sure to note that Anna Russian has droopy wispy foliage as do so many of the heart-shaped tomatoes-- it is caused by the 'wilt' gene. There is nothing wrong with your plant; it's supposed to look that way. One of my customers was convinced by a well-meaning neighbor to rip out her Anna Russian plants. "There's something wrong with them plants, Hildy, rip 'em out..." And she did, then called me to ask for a refund. I gave her the news; her heart broke. It was too late for her to replant but she ordered Anna Russian the following year and had a beautiful crop!
Beaverlodge Slicer $(5.50) 52 days. (EE) F/C (SM) From Gary Ibsen?Tomatofest.com, "One of the earliest maturing tomato varieties at only 55 days, this tomato was developed at
the Beaverlodge Research Center in Alberta Canada.The plant is short, compact and determinate, loaded with 2", smooth, red, round tomatoes that contain rich and well balanced flavors. A surprisingly big flavor for such an early tomato. This is a perfect tomato variety for growing in a hanging basket or in a patio container. A good choice for cooler and foggy growing regions like Northern California."
Bloody Butcher ($6.25)
F/C(EE) 52 days. This marvelous early ripening fruit has an unmatched, spectacular deep red hue--juicy with an intense lingering flavor. The 4 ounce round red 2" to 3" fruits have a rich silky texture and grow in great abundance on potato leafed vines. With its bountiful harvest month after month, the strong depth of flavor in Bloody Butcher has made it a favorite among tomato gourmands worldwide. A favorite for canning.
Brandywine Red, Landis Valley Strain ($6.25) ( (HG)(E) 78 days. This old time legendary and very special strain of Red Brandywine is named for Brandywine Creek and comes from Chester County Pennsylvania where it originated in 1885. These big, vigorous vines produce 8 -12 ounce, deep bright-red round fruits in clusters of 4 to 6. Outstanding, prolific, robust, with intense tomato flavor which stands up to its legendary 100 year history. Among my favorites.
© Photograph one is the
property of Steve Masley of Grow It Organically
(E) 68 days.
This fabulous and extremely popular French tomato is a great favorite among my customers and top seller. De-hybridized years ago by Gary Ibsen, it's a very reliable and bountiful producer of heavy, juicy, 8 oz. red fruits with immense flavor. This plant is among the most prolific ever bred and produces so many fruits you will be giving them away by the basketful.
The Carmello plant in my garden proved to be disease resistant, and produced through late December with night temperatures about 42 degrees.
The flavor alone puts it in my top 10. Wait 'til you see all the tomatoes on this plant; bring the big harvest basket. The third photograph is of a Carmello fruit which grew into 'twins'-- 2 fruits connected to each other at the stem, and grown from one blossom.
Costoluto Genovese ($6.25)
(E) 78 days. A big beautiful and classic Italian heirloom, the deeply fluted, ribbed intensely-red 8 to 12 oz. fruits are mouthwatering and utterly scrumptious. This stunning tomato has a splendid, complex old-time flavor which makes it a perfect choice for sauce and fresh eating. Does will in high heat and cooler areas, too.
Thomas Jefferson grew Costoluto Genovese in his Virginia garden in 1780's along with many other heirloom varieties which became popular across the country. Costoluto means 'ribbed'.
(E) 75 days. This has been a very special favorite of mine which I've grown for my personal stash for a long time.
Because it's such an extraordinary variety,I have sent plants of Druzba as an alternate for Goose Creek when Goose Creek plants were too small to ship.
Soon I began getting calls from customers who liked it even better than Goose Creek and begged me to send them another Druzba! So, I've decided to include it for 2012. I think you will agree that it has a very robust, rich, concentrated tomato flavor borne in smooth, perfectly round, deep-red, blemish-free 10 ounce fruits with good disease resistance and high production. Awesome. The name Druzba means friendship in Bulgarian.
Fireworks ($6.25) 50 days (EE)
Ripe in only 50 to 55 days, this lovely bright red tomato, very large for a quick maturing variety, has splendid rich, sweet juicy flavor which runs deep for a super-early tomato. Fruits are 3", 6-9 oz., round, with a very distinctive slightly pointed tip, are heat resistant, cold tolerant and delicious.
($6.25) (Hybrid) 72 days. (D) (E)
As seeds of SunMaster are no longer available I have chosen Florida 91 as the perfect alternate plant for my customers in extreme high heat areas who want to have a plant that keeps producing in high summer. This specialty tomato has the 'heat gene' and is a very heat tolerant hybrid variety which produces delicious, bright red, 10 ounce, rich, sweet full-flavored tomatoes in only 72 to 80 days. A small determinate plant, growing to 2 or 3 feet, this variety sets fruit easily during high heat, when days are up to 97º or hotter and night temperatures are 73º to 82º. Very disease resistant. Ideal for slicing onto sandwiches and salads, these sweet tomatoes ripen to be firm, solid, and resistant to cracking. Customers report it has a superior flavor to SunMaster.
Martino's Roma (D) ($6.25) (P-S) (E) (SM) 75 days. This extremely prolific plant produces a huge yield--the fruit loads up in amazing quantities on a small 3 foot plant. Its yummy crop of 3" red pear-shaped Roma tomatoes that are great for cooking, and sweet and luscious enough to enjoy fresh right out of your hand. Very meaty with few seeds, highly productive, marvelous for canning, and for your favorite tomato sauce recipe. The flavor intensifies exponentially during cooking.
San Marzano Redorta ($6.25) 80 days. The best of the Italian sauce tomatoes, this big, luscious high-producing Roma type fruit is named for Pizzo di Redorta, (Redorta Peak) one of the highest peaks in the Bergamo Alps of Lombardy, Northern Italy.
At 8 to 10 ounces-- with reports of up to 16 ounces-- and 4" to 6" long, it is a much larger tomato with much better flavor than its cousin, San Marzano. San Marzano Redorta is marvelously rich, extremely productive and good enough to eat fresh, right off the vine.
Stupice ($6.25) (EE) (Stoo-PEETS) 52 days. A great tomato! For me, this is the absolute very best tasting super-early cold-or-hot weather variety and among the first I plant each season. Huge flavor, sweet and luscious. Not a cherry tomato, it's a bigger than a golf ball, smaller than a handball, a 3 to 4 oz. red round fruit, first to ripen and very high yielding. Produces quickly, heavily, reliably early and continuously throughout the season. Even when fruits are smaller as the season wanes, they maintain their marvelous flavor becoming even sweeter with colder weather. A garden staple.
Super Sioux ($6.25) (E) 72 days. Super Sioux is known as the outstanding hot weather tomato. Beautiful 4-6 oz. scarlet globes, huge production of juicy, sweet, meaty red fruit with a fabulous old-time earthy tomato taste. Superb for canning and fresh eating and very disease resistant.