[gardeners] 'maters

Margaret Lauterbach (gardeners@globalgarden.com)
Wed, 30 Sep 1998 08:01:42 -0600

I grew 60 varieties of open pollinated tomatoes this year -- oops, make
that 59 and one hybrid -- and since I jammed them in tightly, I don't have
the overload of tomatoes you might expect.  I canned 11 quarts a few weeks
ago and another 14 quarts last week, and I've got to tell you about one
variety.  Catharine said the Black from Tula was the best-tasting variety
she grew last year, even better than Black Krim.  IMO Black Krim is a
dynamite tomato.  The skin is brownish-black, but the flesh is brick red
and flavorful.  The Black from Tula seems to be brownish black all the way
through, and it looks downright nasty in a jar of canned tomatoes.  It must
be a plant for the south, not the north, since it was ordinary in flavor,
too.  We did have an unusually rainy spring, and a very hot dry summer,
which could have misled the 'mater and me, but I don't think I'll be
growing that puppy again.  

Bill Loke sent me seeds for Hungarian Paste tomatoes.  As I recall, I set
them out a bit late, so they were a little late in ripening.  But they're
huge!  Big heavy fruits with no problems.  No cracking, catfacing, blossom
end rot, etc.  The only bigger tomato in my garden this year is a Russian
oxheart.  One weighs in at 1 lb. 6 oz., the Hungarian Paste at 3/4 lb.
There may be larger ones still ripening, too. Thanks very much, Bill.
Surely a seed saver candidate.  Another 'mater that's a candidate for seed
saving is Burbank.  Prodigious producer of very nice dark pink slicers.  I
think that's the one that's super meaty, as well.  Many I still haven't
tasted yet.  Guess I'd better get to it soon.  My garden is living on
borrowed frost-free weather as it is.  

I have six or eight sizeable Corsican flat gourds hanging in the "kiwi"
arbor.  Built the arbor strong to take care of tons of fruit that were not
to be.  When people talk about kiwis being hardy, folks, they're talking
about the vines surviving.  They blossom early, then are zapped by frost so
no fruit will be produced.  The vines are hardy, the fruit is not.  Plant
paw-paws instead.  Margaret