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digitS'
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My almost Heirloom Tomato

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My "heirloom" winner: Gary O Sena.

A modern cross between Cherokee Purple and Brandywine. That gives it quite a pedigree even though it's "modern."

Cherokee Purple is usually listed as an 80 day variety, Brandywine as 85 day, plus. Gary O Sena is sometimes noted as a 68 day tomato. I don't think so ... it comes in with the Big Beef in my garden. That's usually listed at 73 days.

It has been a difficult year for my tomato plants because of the early windstorms. I've learned that when the plant is damaged, not only do the bugs move in on it but, the fruit is often malformed. The Dagma's Perfection and Casey's Pure Yellow are far from perfect and I have this unscientific notion that I shouldn't even save seed from the plants. Shoot, I got those plants in cages so the slugs would have more trouble getting at the fruit and that extra height made them more exposed to the wind!

Hunkered down sprawl and crawling out on the leeward side of the bed really helped some of the plants. The healthiest branches and nicest fruit are in the paths!

In my less than ideal growing conditions of cold Junes, short seasons with hot days and cool nights, Gary O Sena gives me a taste of what folks elsewhere enjoy with their big heirloom beefsteaks. It gets started early and continues strong. Usually, there is not quite so much contrast between the green shoulders and the dusky pink but this tomato was fully ripe. Big tomato of over 8 ounces off a big healthy plant, Gary O does what I hope for, with full tomato flavor and not a hitch in about 5 growing seasons.

Steve :)
We are each other's harvest; we are each other's business; we are each other's magnitude and bond. ~ Gwendolyn Brooks

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applestar
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Re: My almost Heirloom Tomato

That looks delicious! :D

I think part of the gardening process, like you are doing, is finding out what variety grows well in your area. Sometimes, they also adapt.

So it pays to keep trying different varieties. They really ARE different.

I haven't grown this one only the sister segregate Liz Birt. But I wanted to try it so I asked someone (not Steve) to send me seeds. I hope he remembers.
Learning never ends because we can share what we've learned. And in sharing our collective experiences, we gain deeper understanding of what we learned.

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lakngulf
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Re: My almost Heirloom Tomato

Great looking plate full you have there. How do you know it is a cross between CP and BW?
Nutin as good as a kitchen sink mater sammich

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digitS'
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Re: My almost Heirloom Tomato

Tatiana tells me so, Lakngulf: https://tatianastomatobase.com/wiki/Gary%27O_Sena :)

Also, let me search this out ... Okay, here is Keith Mueller describing them: https://www.kdcomm.net/~tomato/releases/ .

The last 2 seasons have been good ones for my plants to ripen fruit. I have had Red Brandywine, Pantano Romanesco, and Neves Azorean Red - just to name a few. There will likely be some coming in green and ripening on the kitchen counter but I get terribly frustrated when there isn't a single ripe fruit from a variety for me to have tasted and I've just run out of a frost-free season :cry: . Only getting one or two ripe tomatoes off a plant isn't much fun, either.

I don't like being confined to hybrids and ...

It would be disappointing to only have small-fruited early varieties, as much as I like snacking on them :wink: , and missing out on any chance of having "a kitchen sink mater sammich" from a nice big beefsteak :)!

Steve
We are each other's harvest; we are each other's business; we are each other's magnitude and bond. ~ Gwendolyn Brooks

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lakngulf
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Re: My almost Heirloom Tomato

I ordered some seed today!
Nutin as good as a kitchen sink mater sammich

PaulF
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Re: My almost Heirloom Tomato

Having grown Gary O'Sena for three years I can give you my opinion. One of the three it was very much like you described. One year the production was like a Brandywine in a bad year...gave me three tomatoes. Flavor was still pretty good. The other year I got nothing but green tomatoes by frost. The bad years were the first two. Thank goodness I didn't give up. The third year made up for the wait.
Paul F

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