One of my favorite elements of my back yard garden is growing heirloom tomatoes. There is no tomato in the world that can compare to a fresh, organically grown heirloom tomato from your own back yard.
That said, my success with growing tomatoes from seeds is somewhat hit-or-miss. That’s where The Tasteful Garden came through for me. I found the company by looking through the Garden Watchdog database for the best rated mail order plant companies, and was glad I gave them a try.
The Tasteful Garden is a small, family run garden company based in Alabama. Despite growing in a vastly different climate than my zone 4 Minnesota garden, their tomatoes thrived in my garden and produced my best tomatoes ever.
The Tasteful Garden says on their web site:
We grow over 45 varieties of culinary herbs and over 50 types of heirloom and hybrid tomatoes and other gourmet vegetable and pepper varieties which are sold through our website and shipped all over the United States.
We grow our plants using organic techniques and we fully support what we call “heritage gardening”. This is gardening the old fashioned way by recycling farm or yard waste into compost and improving the soil instead of stripping the nutrients year after year. Plants grow healthier and stronger in good soil and need less pesticides because they have natural abilities to fight off pests. Heirloom varieties of vegetables bring diversity and flavors to the garden which also prevent diseases. Mulching, cover cropping and other organic techniques allow us to leave improved soil year after year for our grandchildren as well as have a better garden with delicious vegetables.
I ordered 5 varieties of tomatoes from the company a couple of summers ago: Fireworks, German Giant, Ceylon, Black Cherry and Sun Gold. When they arrived, they were enormous and healthy, and very cleverly packaged to keep all of the plants safe.
I kept the plants on the back porch at night and put them in sheltered spot outside to acclimate to their new conditions for the first few days, but one of the plants began to look pretty sickly and two others looked a little sketchy. I wrote the company and the owner immediately shipped three replacement plants.
The tomatoes all thrived in our garden and produced heaps of delicious tomatoes in a range of great flavors, sizes, shapes and colors. They were my favorite tomato crops ever (which is saying a lot, since I plant a lot of tomatoes from a lot of sources!).
The next year, I stuck with local sources and my own plants started from seed. I have to say, I missed my Tasteful Garden tomatoes. This year, I’ll be ordering from them again (along with purchasing lots of more traditional varieties from local sources and growing a few from seed).
If you’re curious to try some new heirloom tomatoes and would like the early work done for you, the Tasteful Garden is a great source.