Tomato Plants Cultural Guide
Maintain a Minimum temperature of 10 to 15 Degress C
All our tomato plants have been grown indoors in a greenhouse, so are not use to the cold outdoors during early spring, so keep them in a temperature that wont drop below 12 degrees C. A conservatory, greenhouse, or even a sunny windowsill will suffice until the weather warms up.
Do not plant outdoors too early, the ground is really cold in April, and the longer they stay in a large pot where it is nice and warm the better.
Growing tomatoes at home is one of the things in life that you really should do, as the effort is returned to you, with not only the best tasting tomatoes in the world, but because you pick and eat them, they are really fresh, which means they are packed full of good things for your body. Did you know tomatoes are one of the few items that smash up your high cholesterol ?
Varieties that are good for storing have not existed, until now !
At the end of the season, most people are left with a glut of green tomatoes, not knowing what to do with them. You can make chutney, remove the skins and freeze them, makes sauces, bottle or freeze, or bring them indoors to ripen. However, the last option, sometimes means you end up throwing most away if not eaten quickly, as they don't last.
We now have a variety called "Winter Wonder", which store really well. Eat as many red ones as you like and still enjoy that tomato taste, but store the green ones, at the end of the season, for eating later at Christmas. All you have to do is find a cool place for storage, around 10 deg C. Wrap each one in tissue paper, so they don't touch and put them in an open top cardboard box from your local supermarket.
Winter Wonder tomatoes are storage tomatoes grown specifically to be stored so they can be enjoyed throughout winter. Winter Wonder are a semi-determinate tomato that only take 78 days to harvest. The fruit is left on the vine, and harvested before any frost when it is green, or better, pale pink and stored at 10 deg C, in a shed, garage, etc. They are then bought out of storage when required and allowed to ripen for a few days in a bowl at room temperature. A banana placed in the bowl will help with this. If you don't have a colder place for storage, then it is possible to store indoors, in a room that has no direct sunlight, that is cool. Everyone must have a cool place like this. Store at room temperature until ripened into a red orange about one and a half to three months post-harvest.
To make the most of this variety's long-keeping properties, we would advise you buy a second lot of plants from us, to plant around May/June to ensure a large quantity of green fruits hanging on the vine in October. These should be picked complete with calyx (the little green 'spider' at the top), wrapped dry in soft tissue and stored at around 50ºF (10°C).
Throughout December, January and February, transfer the green fruits to a fruit bowl as required, take off the tissue and place a ripe banana or apple amongst the green tomatoes. At a temperature of 70-75°F (21-24ºC) they will ripen over a period of about two weeks and have the taste of summer tomatoes.
No more horrible tasting supermarket tomatoes over winter !