The Biggest Tomatoes!

These plants produce fruit from 2 to 6 lbs

 

                1884 

1884 ($6.75) (B)    (HG) (E) 78 days. 1884 is a superbly flavored old-time tomato which grows on a strong vigorous plant and produces big luscious 1 lb. to 2 lb. deep dark pink fruit with luxurious flavor and sets fruit readily in hot weather. The original seeds were discovered in 1884 by James Lyde Williamson in the debris after the big Ohio River flood of 1884 in Friendly, West Virginia. This grand fruit has taken top mention year after year in tomato tastings all over the country. Easy to grow and very productive. 

 

 

 

 

 

African Queen ($6.75) 80 days.     

 

Big, delicious 1½ to 3 lb. deep-jade pink fruits with red flesh have all the delicious flavors and juiciness you expect from the old time varieties.

 

A fabulous, renown old family heirloom, African Queen has been grown for generations on the steep hillsides of western North Carolina by the Jack Maderis family and most likely came with slaves from The Caribbean.

 

Just marvelous! Everything you expect in a big beefsteak heirloom!

 

 

 

 

  

 

Bear Claw ($6.75) 75 days  

The tomatoes in the second photo weighed 2.9 lbs and 3.2 lbs.

 

I'd been hearing about this extremely rare fruit in heirloom tomato circles--everyone wanted it! We've got it! Incredibly high production.

 

From Lisa VonSaunder of Amishland Seeds, "A fabulous tomato in every way you can measure. A huge tomato with some of the most outstanding flavors I've ever known. I never saw tomato plants grow so large so fast. Huge plant with stems like tree trunks.

 

The first tomatoes of the season were one pound, then the fruit started coming in larger and larger and larger until they were the largest of all my tomatoes this season. Fabulous deep, rich, pink fruit that beat all the others in taste.

 

They grew so large the branches were drooping even with one fruit on them. So, if you want to win first place for size but you treasure flavor above all else, this is the tomato to grow! Do you want to have the most tomatoes ever grown on a vine? Then this is the plant for you!"

 

 

 

 

  

Big Zac ($7.95) 80-90 days. (H) (BBB)    (HG) The biggest tomato of all! This gigantic and very delicious tomato normally reaches 4 lbs., and can reach 5 to 7 lbs., with luscious meaty fruits growing on a hearty disease-resistant plant.

 

Big Zac is very easy to grow and reliably produces gigantic tomatoes in all climates.

 

Big Zac was developed by Minnie Zaccaria of New Jersey, a kind and kindred spirit, who has been growing big championship tomatoes for more than 20 years and has won the biggest tomato contest 7 times.

 

Minnie worked tirelessly to create this humungous fruit by crossing the largest heirloom tomato varieties she could find and finally came up with this amazing and yummy whopper of a tomato.

 

There are Thomas and Dawson, a couple of Kentucky gardeners enjoining the harvest, Big Zac and Hawaiian Pineapple!

 

 

 

Carbon

Carbon ($6.75)     

 

The most requested black tomato that was not on my list unil last season was Carbon. "Laurel, when are you going to grow Carbon??!  Why don't you have it? It's the best tomato I've ever had! You gotta grow it for me!" "PLEASE."

 

If I included every tomato customers requested the list would be unmanageable. I must exercise some self-control!

 

But, with Carbon, I continue to hear this at least 30 times every season. The requests are getting more frequent and adamant as people taste this one at parties, restaurants, weddings and tomato festivals -- which means that hundreds more want to grow it. And for good reason.

 

One of the biggest, at 10 to 16 ounces, and the darkest of the luscious black tomatoes, Carbon has unparalleled, elaborate flavors. And it produces a LOT of tomatoes.  A really hearty plant.

 

So here it is for 2020. Grow this in your tomato garden. One bite and you're a goner.

 

 

 

 

Chocolate Stripes ($6.75)   (B) 80 days.

After removing it from the list in 2009, I was bombarded by horrified customers who could not live without it and were freaked out by not seeing it. So it's back for good. Sorry.

 

Among the largest of the black tomatoes, this one was among the top 3 winners of TomatoFest 2007. Reaching 2½ lbs., ripening to mahogany with dark olive green stripes, these fruits have enormous old-time tomato flavor and an appearance similar to Black Zebra, but huge!

 

 A plentiful harvest, stunning beauty and out-of-this-world taste make Chocolate Stripes a rare treat in your garden.

 

Be sure not to over-water when the fruits are getting ripe because they will crack! Seriously. Be careful. Test the soil, if it is barely damp, turn off the hose and back away.

 

 

Humongous!

© Photograph property of Terroir Seeds and Underwood Gardens

Cuostraleé ($6.75) (Koo strah-LAY) (BBB)   

Big, hearty, prolific plant, with beautiful huge red beefsteak type tomatoes, up to 4 lbs. I have to use both hands to pick them. Gigantic fruits have a superb, classic tomato flavor. 

Very easy to grow, disease resistant and a reliable producer, in my top 10 favorites. Another hot weather favorite which will grow easily and wonderfully in all gardens.

 

 

   

Green Giant  ($6.75)  70 to 80 days  (E) (B)  

 

Yes, it's ripe!

Occasionally a tomato comes along which deserves very special attention. This is one of them. I have not been this impressed by the flavor of a tomato for many, many years -- not since I tasted Brown Derby.  Intense, deep lingering flavors, you will understand when you taste it. So don't pass it up. Call me on the day you first bite into a big, beautiful ripe one. 310 534 8611

 

On a flavor scale of 1 to 100, Green Giant is a 100 +. Beautiful, early ripening. Unforgettable. 

 

We had the immense pleasure of tasting Green Giant for the first time at the 2007 TomatoFest in Carmel, California where it captured the hearts of tasters and garnered a great deal of attention.

 

It arose originally in the garden of Reinhard Kraft of Germany in 2000 when he planted 30 seeds called 'Green Giant' from a friend in Canada. 29 of them grew out regular leafed except for one which had big potato leafed foliage. Reinhard cultivated that one, selecting the best fruit for several seasons, and continued to save seeds. Yay, Reinhard! My original seeds were from my buddy Cynthia Sandberg, owner of Love Apple Farm in Ben Lomond, CA.

 

 

Marianna's Peace ($6.75) 80 days. (B) (HG)      

 

One of our top 3 sellers. The sugary nectar of this huge 5" tomato's creamy, dense, deep pink-red flesh is intensely rich, with perfect sweet-acid balance and sublime, complex flavors reminiscent of the finest of the "old-fashioned" tomato flavors. 

 

This big, beautiful irresistible up to 3 lb. deep pink-red fruit is the talk of the tomato world and has found its way into Top 10 favorite tomato lists of gourmands worldwide. It is perfection and one of the 3 finest tasting tomatoes in existence.

Marianna was from a family of farmers in Bohemia, Czechoslovakia. During World War II, in May of 1945 when she was 17, Russian soldiers came to her school and forced Marianna and all her schoolmates into a truck to be taken to Siberia. During the journey, she and a few others escaped by jumping from the moving truck, but Marianna was shot in the leg just as she crossed the Czech border. With the help of her friends, she was able to continue on to the town of Weiden, Bavaria. She lost all contact with her parents and brothers for the next ten years, but after a long and diligent search with the aid of The Red Cross, she finally found them in 1955. 

Before he died, her father gave her a little bundle of the seeds. 

Marianna married, and in 1957 moved to Washington State with her husband where they raised four children.

The legacy of these seeds reaches back to the early 1900's and year after year the tomatoes borne from this marvelous heirloom continue to be treasured for their outstanding taste and beauty. Incredibly sweet, creamy, with dense flesh, rich and luscious, reminiscent of the finest of those "old-fashioned" tomato flavors, whose memories are the stuff of dreams for tomato lovers.

 

 OMAR'S LEBANESE  

Omar's Lebanese ($6.75)  (BBB)     80 days.

HUGE! Omar's Lebanese has a passionately sweet and complex flavor. 

On the platter, a heart shaped Omar's Lebanese I found in my garden September 13th, growing in a 30 gallon Smart Pot. Just over 3 lbs.

Do you see the heart within the heart? That's tomato love.

These immense fruits--deep dark pink and juicy--grow to 3-4 lbs, with excellent disease resistance. Spectacular tomato. Really easy to grow, out of this world. Takes 2 hands to pick it.

And don't try to just tug one off the vine. Use snippers. This tomato's stems are so strong you'll break the main stem and then CRASH!! -- ("Plant Down!")  I did it in 2011.

In my top 5. Omar from Lebanon brought this tomato to the US years ago. Yay Omar!

 

 

 

Queen of the Sea ($6.75) 80 days.

 

This huge, luscious ruby-red jewel comes to us from the fertile fields bordering the banks of the Adriatic Sea in the northernmost region of the Mediterranean Sea.

These big, hearty tomatoes are heavy-in-the-hand and grow in clusters of 3 or 4, each weighing 10 oz. to 2 lbs. and have such depth of flavor and fragrance  -- the traits we all long for in our gardens.

Sweet, rich and meaty with silky texture and incredible flavors, I am tasting one as I write this--right now--true story.  This tomato is fabulous!

I’ve called it Queen of the Sea to honor the generations of gardeners and farmers in the countries surrounding the Adriatic Sea who have grown, and are still growing, this outstanding tomato.

Seeds of this high-producing beauty are from Meri Jelenic Bijelic of Rancho Palos Verdes, California. The tomatoes in the photograph were grown by my friend who helps me grow out new varieties, 'Tomato Foster Mom' Barbara Kraus, from the same town.

 

     Laurel's Top Pick

My absolute favorite discovery!

Tati's Wedding  ($6.95) 80 days.      

 

This big luscious beauty -- the most flavorful variety I've come across this season and my top pick for 2017, was discovered by my customer Dan Stein of New York as he drove through the Kazbek mountains in the Caucasus of Georgia, south of Russia. He was there on a special day, his friend Tatiana's wedding, when he stopped at a roadside produce stand and discovered this fabulous tomato.

 

The farmer had not name it, so Dan called it Kazbegi Red. After hearing this beautiful story, I couldn't resist naming it for Tatiana, whose nickname is Tati. 

 

These tomatoes are luscious, meaty and silky with big sweetness and just enough tang to make it the perfect all purpose tomato and one of the juiciest I've ever eaten.

 

So productive, you'll get dozens of delicious tomatoes in varying sizes and shapes on the same plant, from 5 oz. up to16 oz. or more.  This is one of the most delightful traits of the heirloom tomatoes.

 

The tomato in the photograph weighed 16 ounces and was grown this season by my customer and friend Barbara Kraus of Rancho Palos Verdes, CA. After our Tati's Wedding plants were demolished by rampaging raccoons, Barb came to my rescue and grew out some plants in her garden.

Without Barb we would not have any photographs or seeds or plants of this incredible for you!  Yay, Barb!

 

Homepage: www.heirloomtomatoplants.com