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Garden 2006 - Tomatoes

In the first part of Garden 2006, I discussed setting gardening goals. This second part is all about Tomatoes.

Every spring I start my vegetables from seeds. I have a wire rack shelving setup with flourecent lights in my basement. The choices you have with seed starting are 10x better than what your local nurseries may decide to carry this season.

When it comes to my vegetable seeds, I almost always go with Burpee. They’re well known and very reliable and I always get great results from their seeds. As a suburban gardener I grow most of the mainstays, tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers and some herbs but I also like to grow squash, beans, carrots, parsnips, turnips, beets and greens. I love eating root crops!

When picking seeds, the first thing I like to decide is what tomato varieties I’m going to try. Last year I tried the Supersteak and Big Mama paste tomatoes and I was very happy with them. Definitely going to order them again. And I’ll try something new to go along with them. I’m thinking Black Krim. I haven’t grow a black tomato before and the taste is supposed to be great.

I’ve grown Brandwine heirlooms in the past and they were delicious but the production was pretty low. That was the year of the rains and they only produced like 10 tomatoes total. I also tried Sungold tomatoes after reading “Stronger than Dirt” last year. The book is about city slickers who decides to start a farm and sell their crops at a Farmer's Market. Well these Sungold tomatoes were their best sellers. So I figured I'd give them a try. I thought they were tasty but I hate cherry tomatoes with thick skins. I think I’ll go back to a nice grape tomato.


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