(Lycopersicon esculentum ‘Indigo Rose’)
Heirloom Tomatoes – Generations of Flavour
Heirloom technically refers to open pollinated, free bred cultivars prior to 1945 however there are many varieties that have been selected or bred in a natural way since 1945. This is particularly so for tomatoes and these new forms are referred to as Modern Heirlooms. Blue colour in tomatoes comes from crossing between wild tomato seed and cultivated forms in the sixties. One of the first selections was Indigo Rose with a blue black top and deep red base.
The acidic flavour of tomatoes partner well with Latin herbs like garlic, basil, oregano, marjoram, rosemary and thyme when cooked or raw with coriander, dill and parsley although this form has a pleasant balance of sweet and acid. Use fresh with basil, coriander, dill and celery leaf or diced with feta cheese, thyme and olive oil.
Like all tomatoes, Indigo Rose is high in the cancer fighting agent, Lycopene. This is enhanced by moderate cooking however with the deepest of blue/black colour it is best used in salads or baked whole. Landscaping/Planting: Plant in an airy, sunny position in well drained soil or very large pots. Requires a 1.8 to 2.2m stake.
Like all tomatoes it must receive a deep soaking when almost dry and should not receive overhead watering. Feed regularly with Seasol and Powerfeed. A small amount of dolomite lime after planting will make stronger plants. Remove side shoots and develop two or three main leaders. Harvest when fruit is dark blue on top and red on base.
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