GROWING EXACTLY DELICIOUS TOMATOES AND NOT LARGE AND NOT SLEEPING!
Most gardeners dream of growing exactly sweet tomatoes in order to enjoy their fresh taste, and you can’t go wrong with homemade preparations. However, in the selection of tomatoes in recent years, the emphasis was on yield, weight and keeping quality of fruits, often to the detriment of taste and aroma, which the old varieties are so famous for. It is gratifying that today there is a trend towards work on the taste and new sweet or mildly sour novelties appear on the seed market.
Tomatoes consist mainly of water, it makes up 90-95% of the total mass of the fruit. And water, as you know, has practically no taste. This means that the main influence on the taste of a tomato is exerted by the remaining 5-10% of the substances that are called dry. The less water and more solids in the fruits, the more pronounced their taste and aroma.
What are these dry substances that affect the taste of tomatoes so much? There are six groups in total, but only two of them most often affect taste: sugars (glucose, fructose) and acids (citric, oxalic, malic, tartaric). The ability to accumulate sugar is in the genetic "code" of the variety. The most delicious are tomatoes with a harmonious content of acids and sugars (50 × 50%), which have the same real tomato rich taste and aroma that we have known since childhood.
Many acids, few sugars tomatoes will taste sour; a lot of sugars (up to 10%) and few acids - the fruits will please with a sweet taste. And those that we call tasteless or "plastic" have a low content of both acids and sugars.
So that the taste qualities of a particular variety could be expressed in numbers, an index of the ratio of sugars and acids, the so-called sugar-acid index, was invented. The higher the value of this index, the higher the taste of the tomato. But, unfortunately, most manufacturers do not indicate this indicator either in catalogs or on seed bags.
The taste of grown fruits depends not only on the characteristics of the variety or hybrid, but also on the conditions of growing and harvesting fruits. The sweetest will be tomatoes grown in the open sun and picked ripe. If they are picked brown or green, then even after ripening they will be less tasty and sweet. The accumulation of sugars in the fruits of the plant also largely depends on weather conditions and proper agricultural practices: soil composition, temperature conditions, the amount of watering and fertilizing with fertilizers.
At the same time, there are several groups of tomatoes, in which the taste of fruits will always be better, regardless of the place of growth and agricultural technology. These are tomatoes that have little juice (cherry and cocktail), as well as fleshy large-fruited ones with orange and pink color of the fruit. If the description of the variety indicates that the tomato has juicy flesh, you should not expect that its fruits will be very sweet.
WHAT IS MORE TASTY: VARIET OR HYBRID
Very briefly, the difference between hybrids and varietal tomatoes is as follows: hybrids are 20-40% more productive than varietal tomatoes; they ripen better and are stored longer; they are well tied in adverse conditions, resistant to fruit cracking during temperature and humidity changes, and are also less affected by diseases. But no matter how the breeders praise the taste qualities of the hybrids, unfortunately, among them there are not so often really sweet fleshy ones, and even fragrant ones in comparison with varietal tomatoes.
Therefore, choosing seeds for sowing, you should focus on both your needs and opportunities. In areas of risky farming and with increased risks of disease, it is better to plant hybrids. In other cases, I would recommend a universal option - the simultaneous cultivation of both varieties and hybrids on the site.
As for the question “is it possible to harvest seeds from hybrid varieties (F1)?”, The situation is the following with tomatoes. Breeders confidently answer: “No”, explaining this by the fact that plants grown from such planting material do not repeat maternal characteristics. However, experienced gardeners, contrary to the recommendations, get quite a decent harvest from hybrid planting material. In addition, in the garden you can always find a place for several plants to actually make sure that this is a good option to get the seeds of your favorite tomato. In addition, some firms actually attribute the title of hybrids to varieties in order to increase the cost of seeds. Otherwise, where do not dozens, but hundreds of them appear on the seed market every year?
Almost all varieties of tomatoes are suitable for fresh consumption. But only those called salads are distinguished by their unsurpassed taste and aroma. For this, they are forgiven for later ripening, and low yields, and resistance to diseases, as well as the tenderness of the fruits.
If you ask summer residents to name their favorite variety, most will no doubt answer: "Bull's heart." It is worth cutting its ripe fruit, as you immediately feel the aroma, the same, real, tomato! Not to be confused with other varieties and the special taste of its heart-shaped fruits. Sugar at times, scrap, they compare favorably with flat-round giants with increased fleshiness of the central part.
Currently, breeders have bred a large number of subspecies of the Bull's heart. In addition to red color, there are varieties with pink, raspberry, white, black and yellow. When you collect a multi-colored crop, you will not be overjoyed. Among them - Honey Spas, Batyanya, Grandee, Budenovka, Miracle of the Earth, Mazarin, Cow's Heart, Sugar Buffalo ...
Of the new varieties, the late-ripening variety Sakharnaya Nastasya (from the Gavrish company) fits well into this series. Plants 150 cm high, raspberry fruits, heart-shaped, weighing 250-300 g, have 4-6 nests, the flesh on the break is sugary, with a pronounced aroma, few seeds.
BEEF STEAK TOMATOES
Beef tomatoes have recently been distinguished among the many large-fruited varieties. They really impress with meatiness, few seeds and, of course, weight. Among the most delicious is the Pink Giant. Lemon Giant, Novikov Giant, Babushkino, One Hundred Pounds, Bear's Paw, Bear's Blood. Weight champion. Figs pink, Figs red...
Among the novelties of recent years, Striped chocolate (from Aelita) stands out, mid-ripening, indeterminate, the fruits are flat-round, ribbed, weighing 250-300 g, the color of the mature ones is brown, with longitudinal marsh-colored strokes. The pulp is dense, juicy, low-seeded, fleshy.
The Persimmon variety has long been known to vegetable growers, but, unfortunately, there is only one re-sort on sale. I recommend paying attention to Persimmon from NK-Russian Garden, its fruits are flat-round, orange and medium-ribbed. It is these, and not round ones, that have its famous taste - initially sweet, with a slight sourness in overripe fruits. The variety is medium-late, the height of the bushes is 1,5 m, the fruit weight is 200-400 g.
"CHERRY" FROM THE BUSH
Many gardeners note that among large-fruited tomatoes, varieties are still tastier, but among small-fruited ones, surprisingly, hybrids are tastier and sweeter. Among the sweetest are Nastya sweet F1, Dark chocolate F1, Ira F1, Negro F1. Of the varieties, Honey Drop and Black Cherry (Black Cherry) are the leaders in sweetness, but their fruits are too tender, they need to be eaten directly from the bush.
THE MOST DELICIOUS VARIETIES OF TOMATOES ON VIDEO
© Author: Tatyana Mironchik, agronomist-seed grower
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