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With this warm weather I’m dreaming of fresh, juicy tomato sandwiches on crusty sourdough bread with Hellmans mayo!

I love different tomatoes for different reasons.

What’s your favorite farm fresh tomato?

I might have to go with the Cherokee Purple.

We grow heirlooms and a few hybrids. No GMOs here, ever.

You ask ‘Which one is the best?’

I preserve the fresh flavors of summer tomatoes – we enjoy them in pasta sauces, salsas, in chili, soups, stews & on pizza all winter.

One of our favorite cherry tomatoes ever is the Sungold, it is a hybrid. It’s like eating a mini burst of sweet sunshine.

Hybrids have their place and we appreciate their consistency & dependability.

But the truth is…we LOVE our heirlooms at Oak Spring. Heirlooms most always offer superior flavor, crazy shapes and fun colors.

They aren’t as productive or disease resistant as hybrids but there are certain varieties we can’t live without.

In case you’re wondering….Here’s the difference between heirloom and hybrid tomatoes
Heirloom

Will grow true to its parent and is considered worthy of passing down from generation to generation. Some define an heirloom as ‘true’ seed, carefully grown and saved for 40 years or more.Heirlooms are open pollinated; so characteristics are passed on. For example, the same size, color and flavor will be passed from the parent plant of this year to the seedlings of next year.

Hybrid

Seed produced by artificially cross pollinating two genetically different plants of the same species, such as two different tomatoes or two varieties of corn. Basically, the cross pollination is done by hand, and a seed that is saved will not grow true to either parent. Although hybrids are typically bred for commercial use for higher yield, improved color and greater uniformity, we small, organic farms find value in their disease resistance.

All things considered,Heirloom or Hybrid, my favorite farm fresh tomato is cut thick and slathered in Hellman’s mayo between 2 slabs of fresh, lightly toasted sourdough bread! As shown above I have a handful of German Johnson heirlooms…

Here’s a guide to our Favorite Tomatoes at Oak Spring Farm…

Amish Paste

(heirloom) Old school sauce & slicing tomato. They are big and light red. We make sauce and salsa from these but they are also great slicers!

 

Cherokee Purple

(heirloom) An Oak Spring favorite. Dusky red ‘purple’ color with green shoulders when ripe. Known for it’s delicious flavor as well as its unusual color. Recognized in the Arc of Taste, Slow Food movement.

Black Krim looks a lot like Cherokee Purple. It’s a Russian heirloom. We love their slightly smokey flavor and dusky pink/purple color.


German Johnson:

(heirloom) Excellent flavor. Hard to say but it might be Lisa’s favorite slicer. Deep, pink medium sized tomatoes are a smaller, smoother Brandywine with a strong, acidic tomato flavor and creamy texture.

 

Pink Berkeley Tie Dye:

Lisa’s Alma ‘Mater’ ! Gotta grow these cool, hippy maters. Medium to large size, pink with green stripes. Well balanced; combines just the right amount of sweetness and acidity.

 

Cherokee Green: (heirloom) Trust us, the taste will blow you away. But you gotta get over the fact it’s green!

This is one of the best tasting green tomatoes anywhere. 8-12 oz. fruits with green flesh and green-yellow skin with amber to red color on the blossom end.

 

Green Zebra: (heirloom) The cutest tomato we grow! If you want a delicious, tangy salad tomato, then Green Zebra is for you! Because it’s ripe just as the green fruit develops a yellow blush, accentuating the darker green stripes people think they’re not ripe, but they are! The 3-4 oz. fruits are the ideal size for slicing into wedges for salads.

 

Striped German: (heirloom) Indeterminate. Sweet, low acid and juicy. The flat, medium to large, variably ribbed-shoulder tomatoes are shaded yellow and red. The marbled interior looks beautiful sliced. This is the sexiest tomato we grow, in my opinion. As can be seen, it’s a strikingly gorgeous show stopper! I hold every big perfect one and marvel at its beauty. It offers a complex, fruity flavor and smooth texture.

 

 

Yellow Brandywine: You, the people, love these tomatoes. Accordingly, they are prized for their distinctively flavorful fruit. Basically, we just love the color of these golden yellow 10-12 oz. fruits. Use for slices, salads, and ‘mater’ sandwiches.