Re: [gardeners] The tomatoes have started rolling in!

Ron Hay (
Wed, 12 Jul 2000 07:28:03 -0700

Good morning, Penny,

The Sungolds and Yellow Pears definitely are sweet, full of natural
sugar, not in the sense of a pie, of course, but deliciously sweet.

At the tomato tasting, which Hortus, the major source of heirloom tomato
seedlings has every August, it was the consensus last year that the dark
purple/black tomatoes did, in face, exhibit a slight saltiness. They
certainly are juicy, too.

We have had local corn since about early June, here in the San Fernando
Valley. Vivian is really partial to yellow corn, and at the moment, we
are having frequent feasts of corn grown by Tapia Brothers on land in the
Sepulveda Dam Basin, which is absolutely top notch. In a way, it's a pity
that so much of California's choicest farmland is now growing houses.
But, those of us who have homes in these former farming areas have some
of the best growing conditions in the county, and continue to enjoy the

"Rutgers" does seem to ring a bell so far as  the name of a tomato is
concerned, and would seem rather logical, since so much research has been
done there over the years.

This week, it looks like more Yellow Pears and Mortgage Lifters will be
featured on our menu. We probably won't have enough to can this year,
since the heirlooms were not really bred for humungous production, but we
certainly will enjoy every juicy morsel:)

Have a great day!


penny x stamm wrote:

> Hi, Ron -- I am quite surprised to hear you say that certain tomatoes
> are 'sweet', and others have a 'delightful note of salt'.  I normally
> do grow some "Sweet 100s" which I gobble right off the vine before
> I can bring many inside -- and yes, perhaps I could say that they
> are sweet.
> We have a Master Gardener who starts at least 15 kinds of
> tomato each spring, just for fun. She brings a huge supply with
> her to our annual May plant swap -- whch is probably how I first
> got started with the "Sweet 100s"...
> The commercial tomatoes we get really do not have too much
> flavor. When the local truck farms start producing, especially
> in New Jersey, things should improve.
> We've survived the winter with the rather expensive tomatoes
> on a vine from Holland. And grape tomatoes have become the rage.
> In fact, cherry tomatoes have almost disappeared!  Sad to say, yes,
> I do think the grape tomatoes have more flavor, but I have tired of
> them.  I happen to be growing some cherry ones, courtesy of our
> cousin who had too many seedlings. They are just forming now,
> and it will take a while for them to reach maturity. Just think about
> it:  local corn doesn't come in until perhaps the  2nd week of
> August!  Zone 6 weather doesn't lend itself to a long gardening
> season . . .
> In my mind's eye, I associate tomatoes with Rutgers University,
> in N.J. They must have done a lot of research on the subject, many
> years ago.  Wasn't there actually a tomato called 'Rutgers'..?
> Penny, NY
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