Heirloom Tomatoes

Heirloom tomatoes come in almost every color of the rainbow, with subtle variations in color, texture, size, shape and flavors.
Heirloom Tomatoes - News

Updated: July 30, 2018

Heirloom Tomatoes

With the increased interest in the flavor of heirlooms, you'll find a large selection of seedlings at local nurseries in the spring. For the broadest range of choices, allowing a perfect mix for your garden, head to the seed catalogs in January and grow your own. Each year I plant several varieties that I haven't grown before to find new favorites.

Heirloom tomatoes range in size from 1/4" cherries up to 1-2 pound beefsteaks. The smaller the fruit size the more prodigious the harvest. Some cherry tomatoes can yields hundreds of fruits, while larger beefsteak varieties will produce a dozen or less. To maximize the harvest focus on mid-sized tomatoes. Round out your selections with cherry and beefsteak varieties.

Interesting Selections

Cosmonaut Volkov - Red, early, 65 days to harvest, consistent producer even in a cool summer, few blemishes, 8-12 oz. flattened globes have a rich, full-bodied flavor. Great for that first tomato sandwich. Named by Igor Maslov, a Russian space engineer, for his friend Vladislav Volkov, a cosmonaut who died when his spaceship crashed.

Pink Accordion - One the few pinks that I have found with wonderful flavor. Semi-hollow fruit suitable for stuffing, but the stunning ruffled "accordion" appearance is artistry sliced on a plate of mixed colored tomatoes.

Ruby Gold - Beefsteak tomato with pale yellow flesh, streaked with red on the blossom end and through the interior. Meaty, with a mild sweetness and little to no acidity.

Golden Jubilee or Jubilee - Medium-sized, 8 oz. orange tomato, meaty, sweet and most often blemish free. A cross between Tangerine and Rutgers, the classic AAS winner from 1943.

Japanese Black Trifele - A black tomato the size and shape of a Bartlett pear. A Russian heirloom has that rich, subtle smoky flavor. Few blemishes and a good producer.

Tasty Evergreen - Introduced in 1956 by Gleckler's Seedmen of Metamora, Ohio. Medium-sized beefsteak, prolific producer, sweet, but not too sweet. Ripe when the outer skin turns yellow, but the inside gel and flesh remain a brilliant green. Some fruits have pink striping at the blossom end.

Cream Sausage - The first white paste-type tomato, that presents with a surprising flavor. White to pale yellow when ripe. Fun for adding different colors to homemade salsas.

Authors

Barb Kline