Gardening: How were your tomatoes this year?

How were your tomatoes this year?
How were your tomatoes this year?

It’s November and the last of the tomatoes have been used – so what’s the verdict on this year’s crop and varieties?

They were cordon varieties (upright vines that need support and side-shooting) that need to be grown under glass – my garden isn’t warm enough to grow tomatoes outdoors and the conservatory is tall and narrow.

As a whole, this was probably the best-tasting crop I’ve ever grown – no gluts but a steady stream of fruit that we ate mostly raw rather than cooking down into my usual concentrate to store for winter, so a slight downside there.

Here are how the varieties performed:

Sungold F1 Hybrid: Usually named as the best-tasting yellow tomato. Approximately 13-14g fruits. Once again, it didn’t disappoint with large crops of lovely flavour. Highly recommended.

Rosella: Dark smoky rose flesh and skin with equally good taste – a high sweetness to acid ratio. Long compound trusses with approximately 15g fruits.

Along with Sungold, the highest cropper of them all, superb flavour. Highly recommended.

Suncherry Premium F1 Hybrid: The best tasting, shiny, red cherry tomato. Weight 13-15g.

A good performer as ever, with great tasting fruit. Recommended.

Artisan Mix: Varieties Artisan Blush Tiger (pink blush on the golden skin) and Artisan Pink Tiger (pink and gold stripes) – tapering, 5-6cm long fruits, weighing approximately 18-20g. Fabulous looking, and tasting, fruit. Not a vast crop but enough to earn its place again. Recommended.

Super Sweet 100: Very long trusses of sweet cherry-sized fruit. Reliable, high-yielding and disease resistant (leftover unopened packet free in a gardening magazine last year). Fruit 20-25g. Taste not as good as the three in front of it, but you can’t complain as it cost nothing!

Rainbow Blend F1 Hybrid: A mix of four colours of baby plum-shaped fruits – Katiebell (yellow), Lizziebell (orange), Luciebell (red) and Flamingo (pink). Fruit weight 16-20g. Taste not as good as Artisan Mix, nor as productive. A bit disappointing.

As for 2018?

Sungold and Rosella are certs – and I’ll see what comes out new on the market.

Miss last week’s column? Catch up with it here.