... growing and hybridizing all kinds of plants in zone 6b Maryland since the 1980's.

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Tomatoes again

I finally got around to cutting the tomatoes to save the seeds, and took some up close pictures (and tasted them too). I had been worried that the flavor might not be too good, but they were surprisingly tasty for having been ripened off the plant for at least four months.

For new tomato seed savers, here's how to do it easily:
1) Squeeze the seeds from the tomatoes into a plastic cup (juice, pulp and all)
2) Leave it to ferment a couple of days to break down the pulp and jelly around the seeds
3) Dump into a wire-mesh kitchen strainer and rinse well (a kitchen sprayer works well to blast all the fermented pulp through the mesh)
4) Blot underneath with a paper-towel to wick away excess water
5) Dump seeds onto wax paper to dry. Once dried you can break the clumps apart easily with your fingers.

I re-use the plastic cups and wax paper over and over again for all of the distinct lines I've been saving.

Here are the three best fruits of the red long-keepers. Only around golf-ball sized but very juicy and great, tangy, fresh tomato flavor (and remember this is after more than four months garage storage). I'm guessing these were most likely green when they were picked.
 And here's that line descended from 'Brandywine' and Lycopersicon hirsutum. No shriveling at all. I remember these were all completely green when I picked them over 4 months ago, because I wondered if they'd ever ripen. They're only about the size of a hard-boiled egg yolk and have a distinctive, non-acid, sweet, grassy-cantaloupe-melon flavor.

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