Tomatoes are generally easily grown. Plant one in a pot on your deck, or plant directly in the ground. Enjoy all summer long!
The largest tomato harvest record is at the Epcot’s Land Pavilion experimental greenhouse, which produced 32,000 golf-ball sized tomatoes. These tomatoes are served in restaurants at Walt Disney World.
The record for the tallest tomato plant is 65 feet tall, the and biggest tomato weighed in at a whopping 8.61 lbs. However, it is not necessary to have a world’s record harvest to enjoy the taste of tomatoes along with the health benefits.
Tomatoes are mainly water with 5% carbs and fiber. A medium tomato is a mere 22 calories. Tomatoes are a major dietary source of the antioxidant lycopene, which reduces the risk of heart disease and cancer. It is also beneficial for skin health and may help prevent sunburns. Tomatoes are a good source of vitamin C, vitamin K, potassium, and folate.
We are not limited to only red tomatoes. My favorite tomatoes are yellow or orange. They are less acidic and add colors to salads. In another post, we will talk about the variety and colors of tomato plants.
I also love Heirloom tomatoes, and I’ll tell you all about them and why:
Heirloom Tomatoes are historical old varieties, which have been passed down through generations (thus the “Heirloom” name). Some heirlooms resist common diseases but generally are not as productive as other varieties. Because the yield is lower, I make up for it by planting more of them.
I grow heirlooms because they are not a standard red tomato, and Heirlooms can be fickle. Their skin is thinner than modern hybrids, which garners more flavor, but the thin skin lead may also to cracking. They can be dual-colored, having both red and yellow on same tomatoes. The shape generally is not a perfectly round ball. Also, the outside of the tomatoes are not uniformly smooth. They have wrinkles and odd shapes. These tomatoes are unique.
But my favorite reason for growing heirlooms is that many are oval in shape, which fits the bread I like for my BLT sandwiches. MMMmmm, I can hardly wait for a new season!
A word of advice: When shopping for Heirlooms, stick with names you know or are known to grow well in your area.
We’ll be talking TOMATOES in the next several posts. We’ll look at the history, little-known facts, health benefits, tomato varieties, common mistakes and solutions for those mistakes.
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