The First Tomatoes

I'll admit the title is a bit misleading. You would think that the first tomatoes I would be talking about would be the first ripe tomatoes, I'm sorry to say that it isn't so! I would love to be able to tell you about how wonderfully tasty those ripe red Roma tomatoes are, how full and rich flavored the Brandywines taste, or how perfectly sweet the mouth popping cherry tomatoes are but I can't. At least not yet we're all still green here. But I can share with you some of our green Romas! I'm excited to see Romas starting the season this year as last year we were lacking in the sauce making tomato area. Romas are great in salads or just eating on a sandwich with mayo and bacon (my favorite! kind of sandwich!) but sauce is where they excel!

Since our Roma style tomatoes got buried last year underneath the faster growing (and extremely indeterminant) cherry tomatoes I said "Ixnay" on the cherries this year, at least for actually planting them. You see over the years I've noticed a lot of volunteer tomatoes in the garden and inevitably they are the cherries. The same is holding true this year - at least I think so. It's hard to say yet until the flowers and fruit begin to form but I suspect we have several volunteer cherry tomato plants. I know that in the bed that held the yellow pear tomatoes there are volunteers as well as several other beds so I'll just need to wait and see what emerges. I planted extra Roma tomatoes this year and isolated them to their own bed to ensure that we would get a good crop of sauce tomatoes. Our first canning experiments went very well last year but didn't last through the winter so hopefully we'll be doing more canning this season. I'm planning on canning tomato sauce, tomatoes themselves, salsa, spaghetti sauce, a family recipe of pizza sauce, and maybe a ketchup. That's just with the tomatoes! Hopefully we'll have a great tomato year and be harvesting all the way into October.

I can almost taste them...they're coming and I can't wait!

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