Heirloom Tomatoes

Its been nothing but these sweet juicy treasures all month (and summer) Earlier in September I went to Linda's farm for her annual Tomato Bash, then this week we had another smaller Heirloom Tomato tasting at the Niagara College greenhouse :) I also handed in my integrated pest management research proposal on .. guess what topic? .. heirloom tomatoes!! I think it will be an interesting and worthwhile crop to investigate.  

An excerpt from my research proposal:
  • The definition of “heirloom” is hard to pin down but the most broadly used definition is a plant that is more than 50 years old, and is open pollinated - able to reproduce, true to type by seed. While most have been cultivated generation by generation outside of the commercial seed trade, some have been created more recently by cross pollinating two open pollinated heirlooms to make a stable cultivar such as L. esculentum 'Green Zebra'  Both determinate and indeterminate tomatoes are represented among the heirlooms. Determinate varieties are primarily suitable for retail planters or hanging baskets and indeterminates are more suited to food production greenhouses.

    Ontario is already a major producer of greenhouse tomatoes with an already established infrastructure and supply chain. Today there is an increasing demand for local, sustainable, flavourful food - heirloom tomatoes can combine current trends and consumer needs with conventional production facilities.
I want to grow greenhouse tomatoes that have been selected for size, shape, degree of ripeness, color, variety and flavour not just shelf life and uniformity!


  1. Great post! This year first time for heirloom varieties in my garden. Best ones for me: Cherokee Purple and Aussie (biggest darn tomato I've ever grown/seen!), and I loved the Mr. Stripey - beautiful and unique! But the dissapointments were: Mortgage Lifter and San Marzano. But then, hot dry summer, no rain resulted in horrible spider mite problem for those two.

    Thanks for such a lovely blog!

    Cynthia Crane

    www.TheCranesNest.com (Art and Gardening Goodness blog)
    Facebook: CynthiaCranesArt

  2. I got black krim on my garden this year by being too lazy to throw out rotten ones in the garbage.. (I just pitched it out behind the house) My dad grew a lot a varieties of heirloom as well..mmmmmmmm. You can't beat them.

  3. I've been having lots of fun growing heirlooms this season, especially the Brandywines. I can't wait to try new varieties! http://nycgardening.blogspot.com/2011/09/my-new-favorite-tomato-brandywine.html