Posts Tagged ‘heirloom’

Paper Seed Packet Template

Seed Packet Template

I have dried out two batches of tomato seeds and I am fermenting a third batch. After all 3 are ready, I will make sure they are viable by sprouting a sampling in a wet paper towel.  Then it will be time to pack them up and ship them out!

Sorry I haven’t had much to say lately, but life happens from time to time.

 

26.5 ounce Cabin Tomato

WOW!  I have never grown such big fruits from this variety before!  If you just joined this web site, let me fill you in.  I have been saving seeds from “Cabin” tomatoes and regrowing them for the last few years.  The plants seem really disease resistant, and I love the taste!

I have saved one batch of seeds, which was about the amount that covered a small dinner plate.  Those are in the freezer now, and will be tested for viability soon.

I have a second batch of seeds fermenting in a quart jar right now, and that should provide another few hundred seeds.

I plan to send out up to 50 (give or take) envelopes of seeds for this variety of tomato to folks willing to send in a picture of their efforts to grow it in 2013, and who will try to save seeds for the next season.

Some have already sent me their addresses (thank you!), and I hope to collect a few more.

Large Cabin Tomatoes this Year + Saving Seeds Round 1

14 ounce Cabin tomato

15 ounce Cabin tomato

I have been seeing some Cabin tomatoes that are much larger than the last 3 years.  I guess when they get full sun they produce at a better size!

Seed Saving Round 1 - 2012 Cabin Tomatoes

Seed Saving Round 1 - 2012 Cabin Tomatoes

I saved seeds from these two tomatoes. They are fermenting in this jar on my counter. Soon I’ll clean them and dry them.

Only 4 of the 8 people who said that they wanted to grow Cabin tomatoes next year have sent me their mailing address.  If you are interesting in growing Cabin and you didn’t reply to my e-mail last week, please comment here.

 

Giant Syrian Green Tomatoes Mid-June 2012

Giant Syrian is another potato-leafed tomato plant variety that I am growing this year.  It is billed in seed catalogs as being capable of producing 1 pound fruits.  In my experience, the first tomato to set on a given plant is usually the biggest one.  If you want to maximize the size of that first fruit, you have to pick off all the other ones that come after it.

I’m not trying to break any records, so I’m leaving all the fruit on the plant.  I would rather get a whole bunch of 6 or 8 ounce tomatoes than to just have one really impressive specimen.

The plant is growing very well and the fruit shows no sign of turning color yet. That’s fine by me, just keep growing!  The best part…so far, NO DISEASE, NO BLIGHT!

Green Cabin Tomatoes Mid-June 2012

Above is the flower from an open-pollinated heirloom variety of tomato that I have grown every year since 2009.  “Cabin” was the name on the list I chose from at Wintersown.org.  This tomato was listed as RARE on their listing that year and has been absent from the list ever since.  It’s by-far my favorite tomato and it’s a personal project to continue this fruit, as I could be literally the only person growing it anywhere right now.

Cabin tomato has shown itself to be resistant to the blights that my tomatoes end up getting eventually during most growing seasons.  Where my other plants have already died in August or September, Cabin has continued to grow until first frost around Halloween.  Cabin provided me with a red tomato (picked green) on Thanksgiving one year.  That’s pretty good for Illinois.

The green tomatoes shown in this post should ripen to a nice dark pink tone within 2 weeks.  They are usually 3 to 8 ounces, with the average more towards 4 ounces.

Many of my Cabin tomato flowers were multi-blossoms this year, so I might get a couple of fused fruit that are larger than normal.  As you probably saw from the photos, Cabin is a potato-leaf type tomato.  Oh, taste!  Cabin is excellent eating.  It’s meaty, average in acidity and works equally well for eating raw or cooking into sauces.

Finally, I don’t want to be the only grower saving seeds for this tomato.  If you are interested in also growing Cabin next year, and will save seeds from it to keep this heirloom around for the future, please let me know.  If you have trouble with blights and want a plant that will grow along while others struggle in the same spot, please consider Cabin.

Hey, I’m a winner!

Marisa of the blog Food in Jars posted today that I was the winner of her contest giving away a nice packet of Survival Seeds from HomeTownSeeds.com! Hooray!  And what luck, because I was chosen from among 230+ commentors on her post!

I am very excited to have won a hermetically sealed packet of heirloom seeds very similar to the one shown below.

Thank you Marisa!  I really appreciate this and will open my mailbox with anticipation for the next week or two!

Green Tomatoes. Beefmaster, Big Mama and Cabin

 Here are a few pictures of my developing tomatoes.  Unfortunately, two of the three featured in this post are hybrids.  I’m going to actively move away from the hybrids in the next few years.  That’s the main reason why I am growing so many different tomatoes (18 types this year)… I want to find an heirloom variety that grows well for me in my own back yard.  With heirloom tomatoes, I can save seeds each year and avoid relying on a store to sell me more.

As you can see from the pictures below, they have had no lack of water yet this year.

Beefmaster green tomato.  Hybrid.

Beefmaster green tomato. Hybrid.

 

Hybrid paste tomato

Big Mama. Hybrid paste tomato

 

Cabin.  Rare heirloom tomato.  Leaves somewhat potato-like.

Cabin. Rare heirloom tomato. Leaves somewhat potato-like.

May 2009 Backyard Garden

Gardening by numbers     

Gardening by numbers
Bed 1 is my wife's herb garden with an 8 foot row of cucumbers along the fence.  Just seeded this weekend.
Bed 1 is my wife’s herb garden with an 8 foot row of cucumbers along the fence. Just seeded this weekend.
Bed 2 has strawberries, three kinds of peppers and a couple eggplants I got at the farmer's market this weekend.
Bed 2 has strawberries, three kinds of peppers and a couple eggplants I got at the farmer’s market this weekend.
Bed 3 is seeded with sweet corn on the left side, white onion sets down the middle and melons on the right.
Bed 3 is seeded with sweet corn on the left side, white onion sets down the middle and melons on the right.
Bed 4 is seeded with bush green beans, beets and carrots.
Bed 4 is seeded with bush green beans, beets, sweet potatoes and carrots.
Bed 5 has rapidly maturing broccoli and was seeded a few weeks ago with beets and radishes.
Bed 5 has rapidly maturing broccoli and was seeded a few weeks ago with beets and radishes.
Bed 6 has broccoli, a zucchini, cabbages, a couple lettuce and my sons' 2x2 squares on the left corners.
Bed 6 has broccoli, a zucchini, cabbages, a couple lettuce and my sons’ 2×2 squares on the left corners.
Bed 7 has hybrid Big Mama tomatoes, supposedly a huge paste tomato.  The perimeter is planted with radishes.
Bed 7 has hybrid Big Mama tomatoes, supposedly a huge paste tomato. The perimeter is planted with radishes.
Bed 8 is planted with 8 heirloom tomatoes and has a perimeter ring of carrots.
Bed 8 is planted with 8 heirloom tomatoes and has a perimeter ring of carrots.
Bed 9 is a row of straw bales planted with lettuce and a couple extra herbs.
Bed 9 is a row of straw bales planted with lettuce and a couple extra herbs.
Bed 10 is an 8 foot wide narrow bed planted with a double row.  Cucumbers and snow peas will climb the lattice.
Bed 10 is an 8 foot wide narrow bed planted with a double row. Cucumbers and snow peas will climb the lattice.

Free Heirloom Open Pollinated Tomato Seeds from WinterSown.Org

The awesome folks over at WinterSown.org will send you free tomato seeds in exchange for your Self Addressed Stamped Envelope.  This is possibly a USA-only offer, I’m not sure.  They strongly encourage you to learn the technique of Winter Sowing your seeds.

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If you give them a small donation, you’ll get about twice as many seed packets and you’ll also have assurance of receiving your top choices.

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I now have to make room for an entire extra bed of tomatoes.  :)  It’s not such a bad thing.

I plan to save open-pollinated heirloom tomato seeds this year from several of my favorites, and to return some of the love to WinterSown.Org by sending them back some of the seeds I save.

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