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Historical background information for varieties handed down from bygone days.

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Old December 16, 2009   #16
beefyboy
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has anyone ever grown a white tomato called Bianca Grande? I bought seed from Mariseeds and grew it out and it is supposed to have a raspberry swirl in the center. It has not done very well here in Florida but I am trying one last time right now. This tomato she told me was supposed to be as sweet as cotton candy! I have my reservations. lol
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Old December 17, 2009   #17
geeboss
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Sounds like a awful high birx number to reach cotton candy sweetness. LOL
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Old December 21, 2009   #18
LoreD
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A woman I know tried a recipe for spaghetti sauce that her great grandmother made. The recipe told her to put in two cups of sugar, she thought it was a little much, but she put in anyway and ended up with a sickly sweet mess.

She said she felt a little better when I told her that most of the older varieties were usually tart. Another woman said she had seen her grandmother eating tomatoes with mayonnaise and sugar because the tomatoes she had grown up with were so tart.

I tried a few varieties that were supposed to be very old varieties and was really underwhelmed. They were completely inedible if they weren't cooked.

It is my understanding that sweetness was bred into the modern tomatoes so many of the really old varieties would not match modern tastes.

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Old December 21, 2009   #19
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Actually, most of the older varieties have much more apparent sweetness 9- or are at least on a par with newer varieties.

I know that Stokes supposedly bred additional sweetness into some of their hybrids, but it was really more about ensuring that tomatoes commercially grown and picked at the break stage (just a bit beyond green) had better flavor than most of the grocery store tomatoes. I grew a few and was quite underwhelmed!
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Old February 9, 2010   #20
cortona
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i grown golden medal at home and i simply love the flawor, mom simply cant eath it because of the too sweet taste, dad simply denied to taste it because of the orange /streaked color...
but i continue to grown it!
wath i dont grown aain? roma tomatoes my dad grown it because is largely commercial avaiable, but after he try an heirloom paste from an old man that live near me.... no more roma tomatoes in the patch!
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Old February 10, 2010   #21
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Hi Cortona! Good to see you here~!
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Old February 14, 2010   #22
travis
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Heirlooms I wouldn't bother with again include Nyagous, Yellow Pear, Large Red Cherry, Hillbilly Potato Leaf, Dixie Golden Giant, Shah Mikado and Dwarf Gold Champion.

There are many other more recently created varieties, either open pollinated commercial varieties or stuff masquerading as heirlooms, that I wouldn't bother with again. But the question was to which heirlooms I wouldn't repeat.
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Old February 14, 2010   #23
b54red
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Quote:
Originally Posted by travis View Post
Heirlooms I wouldn't bother with again include Nyagous, Yellow Pear, Large Red Cherry, Hillbilly Potato Leaf, Dixie Golden Giant, Shah Mikado and Dwarf Gold Champion.

There are many other more recently created varieties, either open pollinated commercial varieties or stuff masquerading as heirlooms, that I wouldn't bother with again. But the question was to which heirlooms I wouldn't repeat.
I haven't found any heirlooms yet that weren't worth a repeat. I have found many hybrids that I won't grow because of their taste or lack thereof. The reason why some of the heirlooms don't get too many repeats is that some have little disease tolerance and I live in an area that demands disease tolerance if you want to eat homegrown tomatoes.
That's why I usually have a few Big Beefs for insurance. I have yet to have a year that they didn't make good.
This may be the year that I get some heirlooms not fit to try again due to lack of taste because I'm trying nearly 50 new varieties. I'm trying Royal Hillbilly; I hope it's not the same as Hillbilly Potato Leaf.
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Old February 14, 2010   #24
brokenbar
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I grew " Heart of Compassion" three years running and it sucked! So I gave some started plants to a friend who lives in Montana and guess what...it STILL SUCKED. The description was this:
Quote:

A huge, 4 to 5-inch, slightly flattened, jade-pink, heart-shaped, very meaty heirloom tomato with thin skin, few seeds and terrific taste. Sure to become one of your favored garden ‘jewels.” 78 Days
Sounds PERFECT doesn't it? For a tomato dryer like me, this would be the
ultimate drying tomato (I hate that word "ultimate"...) I REALLY wanted that tomato...For me, it was NEVER larger than three inches, late, late, late and the flavor was humdrum.
I tried new seed the second year and I planted them in an entirely different area in my garden (my garden encompasses about 2 acres, separated into different growing zones/areas.) It again gave me the finger...

It is supposed to look like this:


I officially HATE this tomato that is like a recalcitrant child who fails to live up to it's full potential. I none-the-less STILL WANT THIS TOMATO...uuggghhhh
My Husband says it has now become a battle of wills...me and the tomato toe-to-toe...so far, the tomato is thrashing me...
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Old February 14, 2010   #25
travis
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Quote:
Originally Posted by b54red View Post
I'm trying Royal Hillbilly; I hope it's not the same as Hillbilly Potato Leaf.
First of all, I agree 100% about Big Beef. Great tomato.

Royal Hillbilly is nothing like Hillbilly Potato Leaf at least in my limited experience with both.

Hillbilly Potato Leaf failed to set fruit at the slightest spat of bad weather. Royal Hillbilly laughed at foul weather conditions and produced oodles of tomatoes start to finish. Some were small but most were half to 3/4 pounders.

Only negative things I have to say about Royal Hillbilly is their flavor can be a little washed out in wet weather, but what tomato is not, and the outside fruit walls are a bit thinner than I like in a tomato. That can be a problem when the seeds and gel are too close to the outside and the weather stays wet.

Once the weather dries out and stays hot, Royal Hillbilly developed consistently sound fruit with an outstanding, bold, old fashioned tomato flavor in a beautiful deep pink fruit.
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Old February 15, 2010   #26
maggie c
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So, what about tomatoes that you would never grow again because they were just too hard to grow? They needed too much babying, or for whatever reason just were too much trouble? Which varieties have been the hardest to grow for ya?
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Old February 15, 2010   #27
mtbigfish
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B54red and Travis
Have you ever grown the Big Beef OP version?

Dennis

Last edited by mtbigfish; February 16, 2010 at 08:40 PM.
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Old February 16, 2010   #28
Dewayne mater
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Mr. Stripey. Bleah.

RJ - I grew Old German last year and had terrific results. It was extremely late, but still set fruit and in fact was setting fruit much further into the Texas summer heat than any of the other varieties I grew (admittedly only 6 other varieties). It got me through August when all other plants were done in July. It produced enormous (biggest was almost 2 pounds) bi-color fruit that was almost all meat and hardly any gel. My friends and family all enjoyed the taste, which was admittedly not as good as my favorites, but still very tasty, including some nuances/essences of other fruits and was unlike any tomato I've grown.

In short, if you've only grown it once, maybe give it one more try in a different year and see if it does any better for you.
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Old February 16, 2010   #29
barefootgardener
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I agree with Dewayne about Old German..I have been growing it for a number of years now and it is always a fav.of mine..It is a big beautiful meaty bi-color..I think it has superb taste..
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Old February 16, 2010   #30
jhp
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cortona View Post
i grown golden medal at home and i simply love the flawor, mom simply cant eath it because of the too sweet taste, dad simply denied to taste it because of the orange /streaked color...
but i continue to grown it!
wath i dont grown aain? roma tomatoes my dad grown it because is largely commercial avaiable, but after he try an heirloom paste from an old man that live near me.... no more roma tomatoes in the patch!
Cortona- this sound like a great tomato to me. I make sauce every year. I am on a quest for my ultimate paste tomato.

Jen
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