Ask anyone who gardens what type of tomatoes they grow and you are likely to get an impassioned response about varieties, the merits of hybrids vs. heirlooms, and frequency of watering. Few vegetables (yes, I know tomatoes are a fruit) spark such an obsession among gardeners.
My garden this year is all about redemption for me. After a few years of bad luck with my tomatoes, I am determined to have success. So it was with great expectations and anticipation that we set out yesterday for the annual TomatoMania seeding sale. TomatoMania is a roving plant sale that sells over 300 varieties of tomato seedlings.
One of the tomato plants I’d planted a few weeks ago was already starting to show signs of trouble, so I took a picture of the offending leaves and brought my camera with me.
I asked the first “helpful person in blue” working there if they could help, and set in motion a whirlwind process of being passed off from person to person. After speaking to no fewer than 5 people, I found someone who didn’t try to tell me it was “in my soil” (not possible when the soil is brand-spankin’ new out of the bag). I got final confirmation that yes, it’s most likely blight which is a fungus. My only option is to fight back; strip off the damaged leaves and spray with a fungicide. So much for my dreams of “organic” gardening, but honestly, I know I will not mind once I bite into a sun-warmed, freshly picked home-grown tomato.
For those of you as obsessed with tomatoes as I am, these are the varieties I am attempting to grow this year:
- Copia-Heirloom, Orange bi-color Green Zebra Stripe cross
- Black Truffle-Hybrid-Deep burgundy with purple and black
- Sophie’s Choice-Orange/Red, grown exclusively for TomatoMania, small plant, will go in pot.
- Kellogg’s Breakfast-Heirloom, yellow
- Legend-Heirloom, bright red, disease-resistant
- Ace- Red, ?
- Jubilee-Yellow, ?