Debby’s Top 5 Round Red Tomato Varieties

tasting different tomato varitieties we grew
Tomato Tasting Tray. One thing we sometimes to for dinner at Prior Unity Garden is the tomato tasting tray, where we just try all the different kinds of tomatoes from the garden. Here is a tray with over 15 varieties – Yum !

Okay, so pretty much everybody loves to grow tomatoes, and even if some of us like the funky colors and shapes, I find that loads of gardeners keep asking me for ‘round red tomatoes’.

The main reason for growing these is because they taste good.

So, here goes with my top picks and note of why they are on my list…

  • Old Virginia – Here in Virginia, or anywhere you have hot, humid summers, this one is the one grow.
  • Old Brooks – it just tastes so darn good, with my preferred acid/sweet balance, a bit on the old fashioned acid side
  • Thessaloniki – the dependable tomato for drought or dry conditions, amazingly so!
  • Siletz – the only determinate on the list that I have grown for 30 years. Great for salsa.
  • Carmelo (F1) – the only hybrid on the list because it performs so well and tastes so smooth and rich

Hope this inspires you to step out and try more varieties.

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What to Grow When – Foundations of Organic Gardening Info Series

Forellenschluss, translated to Flashy Trout's Back, romaine lettuce is a not only a good choice for most seasons, but a beauty in the garden.
Forellenschluss, translated to Flashy Trout’s Back, romaine lettuce is a not only a good choice for most seasons, but a beauty in the garden.

You already know to grow your tomatoes and squash in the summer and you may know to grow your peas in the spring, but what about all year round ? Did you know there are several plants you can over winter here ?

There is a yearly cycle that can have you eating out of your garden all year long, even in winter. For example, now is a good time to start kales, cabbages and other winter crops. There are timing differences not only with different spring and summer crops, but also with fall and winter ones.

You can refine this further to have even more success. For example, you can grow lettuce almost year round here. To do so, take into account what different varieties like, some only grow well here in cool weather, but some can take more of our summer heat.

Choosing where to grow each crop in each season, based on sunlight and water resources different months of the year also helps insure your success.

Taking all these things and many more into account is part of how each person come up with their month by month checklist in the Foundations of Organic Gardening Course. Don’t miss this opportunity to become a great organic gardener ! Sign up today.

A Tried and True Tomato, and Everything Else – Foundations of Organic Gardening Info Series

Tomato Tasting Tray.  One thing we sometimes to for dinner at Prior Unity Garden is the tomato tasting tray, where we just try all the different kinds of tomatoes from the garden.  Here is a tray with over 15 varieties - Yum !
Tomato Tasting Tray. One thing we sometimes do for dinner at Prior Unity Garden is the tomato tasting tray, where we just try all the different kinds of tomatoes from the garden. Here is a tray with over 20 varieties – Yum !

Hopefully everyone is enjoying juicy home grown tomatoes from their garden or farmers market. Do you know what your favorite tomato variety is or what ones do best here ?

Although most love a summer tomato, if you are growing your own, it is an asset to know what ones you like best as a place to start. It also helps to know what grows well here.

It is no secret that Debby’s favorite is Cherokee Purple and Russell’s is Green Zebra and if you know a favorite, it a great place to branch from to try different varieties. The good news is, when growing at home, pretty much every tomato tastes good, so even if a new variety does not turn out to be a favorite, chances are it will still be better than one you’ll get anywhere else.

Also consider if the tomato variety is Indeterminate or Determinate. Indeterminate varieties are vining and are best trellised. Determinate varieties have a more bush habit and are often the best choices for containers.

One of the things we do in the Foundations of Organic Gardening Course is everyone get to consider what the best varieties are best for them, of each thing you want to grow, and learn ways to keep making choices you’ll like. Check it out and sign up soon before space runs out.