The Tomatoes Are Coming!

From Sun Ripened to Sun Dried

From Sun Ripened to Sun Dried

I’m trying to remember this moment as the calm before the tomato storm. I have a feeling this nice hot weather is about to inundate us with tomato bounty. I have the drying screen, dehydrator and oven drying recipes ready to go. I’m still looking for the perfect catsup. Let us know if you have a recipe you like!

We will have quite a few of the Principe Borghese tomatoes ready to go first. They have been ripening one at a time here and there, but now there are suddenly *lots* of orange ones on the vines and the vines seem less robust, as if all their energy is going into the fruits now.

Shades of Genoa

Shades of Genoa

I am really looking forward to tasting the Costaluto Genovese tomatoes. They look wonderful on the vine with their deep creases and funky shapes.

I tried to count the other day and I think there are at least a dozen varieties of tomatoes growing in the Dirt to Dinner garden; Principe Borghese for drying, Roma for sauce and cooking, three varieties of grape tomato for eating, the Orange German Strawberry tomato my mother-in-law sent over for fun, the Big Beef for burgers and other slicing needs. And the there are what I think must be  the Crimson Carmellos, which grow like monsters! Green-GloryThey are the most robust tomato vines I have ever seen. If you are out late in the evening watering too close to this thing, I swear it might toss one brawny arm over your shoulders and keep you there all night telling you its garden tales as the moon rises.

The fruits are a shiny deep green and I know the label for the plant is hidden down there somewhere, behind the lost shallots that I foolishly thought might actually enjoy a little shade provided by the tomato. Ha! They better be nocturnal to be surviving under there. At least the Edamame beans still get some light from the side.

I am also enjoying the dry farmed tomatoes planted outside the fence in the squash garden. The squash aren’t big enough yet to be much help shading the ground, but the tomato plants still seem happy.

Romas Getting Ready

Romas Getting Ready

Between drying, making pizza sauce, making catsup, whatever the kids will eat in salads and on sandwhiches, I think we’re pretty much set for tomatoes!

And the really interesting thing is the way the tomatillos have taken off! There are both verde and whatever purple is in Spanish varieties out there and they have taken over the corner growing bed to a slightly unhealthy extreme. Yesterday I found some kind of mold growing on one of their leaves. I may need to get out there and pick off the affected parts of the plant. It’s so dense in this patch that the air circulation can’t be good.

Not sure why I didn’t figure out that tomatillo plants got so big and spready when we planted them. They all seem so small and helpless in the beginning! :-)


3 thoughts on “The Tomatoes Are Coming!

  1. I’ve been drying the PB’s for about ten days now, mine didn’t ripen till then. Now, I’m going to round 2, putting them through the victorio strainer and I’m going to cook the juice down and dry it for tomato powder.

    Those PB’s are really full flavored after they have dried, and mine haven’t ripened all together as I thought they would, I must still have 300-400 tomatoes on the vine. I’m becoming a little concerned because the plants are starting to dry up and die. I’ve been pruning the dead stuff off and hoping I get my whole crop. If the dying gets too bad, I’m going to pick them green and let them ripen off the vine.

    My CG are JUST now beginning to ripen, but its pretty nice timing actually, my mortgage lifters are in an in between period so I’m going to have a new flavor for a while.

    I planted six PB’s and six CG’s and wish now that I, too, had a second planting of PB’s. Space is a premium for me, though, so I’m not exactly sure where I would have planted them. I have square foot gardens and I’m going to beg my husband to let me have some closer to the front yard next year.

    Well, have a wonderful fall/winter.


  2. Hi Becky,

    I put the last of our wonderful PB tomatoes into the dryer this morning. :-( It’s the beginning of August and I am wishing I had done two plantings of these prolific little guys! None of my plants got over three feet tall, so I could put them pretty much anywhere and they were covered head to toe with evenly sized, evenly ripening fruit.

    Of course, there would have been even more of them for sundried tomatoes if we hadn’t eaten so many of them with basil and mozzarella. ;-) They were the first ones ripe here but the Constaluto Genovese weren’t far behind. They have a richer flavor than the PBs and are delicious in spite of their “ugly” creases and bumps. Some of mine grew with an opaque skin that didn’t seem quite right to me but they tasted fine. The big problem was that vermin loved them! We had tomatoes stolen off those plants every night no matter what we tried. They also dry nicely, though you have to do them on separate trays from the PBs because they are done much faster.

    Hope you are enjoying some delicious tomatoes soon!

  3. Wow! I’ve been looking around for others who planted Principe Borghese tomatoes and maybe some recipes to go with the drying. I found you here and to my surprise and delight, you’ve also grown Constaluto Genovese as well!

    Being in zone 6, I haven’t gotten a ripe tomato yet, but I am blown away at how prolific these PB’s are. They are hanging so heavy with fruit I keep having to support, support support them.

    How many did you plant of each and what was your harvest like?

    Did you like the tast of both?

    In addition to these two, I also have San Marzano, Royal Chicos, some black cherry tomatoes, Ildi ( a yellow cherry) and mortgage lifters. My quest for the tastiest sauce continues.

    Thanks for the sight, pretty pix and nice reading.

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