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Tomato Superstars |Bill Adams |Central Texas Gardener

January 2, 2020


Alright thanks so much for sharing your
garden with us and right now get your taste buds ready because we’re going to
talk tomatoes and we have the expert with us. Bill Adams is joining us. Bill is
a garden author, extraordinaire, spent 30 years is an AgriLife Extension agent in
harris county in houston and you know your tomatoes sir. Well I can keep trying new ones every
year. You know I i think once i find the perfect one for a blt I’ll just grow that one from then on, that never works, 50 varieties
this year. 50, 50, ok that you gotta habit sir but
that it’s a it’s a beautiful habit and as people can see from looking on
the set today you brought a bucket of beautiful tomatoes with you we’re going
to talk about different varieties most of them heirloom and we’re also
going to talk about the uses for these in and also we’re going to taste testing. I’m gonna say I’m going to taste some new
varieties for myself so I’m excited about this. Let’s start by talking about these
beautiful tomatoes we have here right in front of us you’ve brought this is a variety of
different kinds of heirlooms and the and some of these are just gorgeous and
that’s sort of a Cherokee purple looking one it’s actually a French variety
called marnarrow but a beautiful plant, fruit Cherroke Purple’s been very popular for a long time yeah and it’s one of the black tomatoes are sometimes
called they’re not truly black but they have sort of a purpley dark purplish
and they’re always rich and and often have that the underlying kind of smoky
and taste to him and a little extra special treat. Yeah now and then that so they’ve got
that that heirloom heritage so they’re really flavorful let’s
talk a little bit about the production on this particular one it was tell me the name again. Marnarrow is the variety it it’s it’s a new and it was outrageously expensive. Cherokee purple is very similar and readily available there are relatively
easy to grow. I mean this year we have had a lot
of rain so that’s complicated things with most of them but you get pretty
good production on him yeah and I don’t use them in sauce all
the time right because they gave it kind of a dark old
look yeah but if I’m fixing them for me I don’t care if I know better cause the flavors there. Well as I said you bought a bunch of
different varieties and some of them are our new varieties, some are old. This is one I wanted to show both sides
of this to the folks out there It can be almost almost blue black when it’s fully ripe. But it’s one of the green when ripe types Ok and the other side just look at that fruit its beautiful and
tell me the name of this one. It was called black green it’s one of Tom Wagner’s varieties he’s the guy that developed the green zebra And he’s, well I guess he’s an amateur breeder but he’s very active at it and grows lots of
different varieties so he’s also it’s got some of the ansothine and pigment
in it you know the new the indigo series and so. And I understand we
have some of that right here right yeah I now let’s say you’re trying thats a
cherroke ok this is the right that’s the one the black green one. Okay so I’m gonna try some of this black green one. Alright see what you think It’s not like something you’d fry this isn’t
your green tomato in the fall that you’f fry up. This has got acidity it’s got some nice
complex weakness – absolutely You could have that on a hamburger
and you even say oh well it’s midwinter and I just went to the burger shack I don’t want to get all these are but
that that one was tasty enough to make me want to eat everything on the plate
right away. And the Cherokee green is a nice big tomatoe, well you can see right there. Well let’s it’s been a minute one more moment with a black green
and so this is available for folks to try Yeah it’s not readily available it may
be more so i got the seats to a little seed company called Baker Creek that
specializes in heirlooms. Probably on these newer varieties you’re going to
have to grow them from seed. Okay now which one of them are we
looking at here. That is a Cherokee green Cherokee purple was what
kind of got it started now there’s a Cherokee green, Cherokee Brown, Cherokee black, so forth but the Cherokee green is
really nice it would be great on a burger sometimes we go to to the burger
joint was just a hold of tomatoes we’ve got ours all sliced up in a little bag
and you slip those babies in there It’s a whole new experience. You
should have a tomato tasting bar somewhere because the way to describe
the flavor that 1 i’ve already sampled was like this as something describing a
glass of fine wine so I think there’s a parallel there now
this is the green right yes well ok so this is a Cherokee green
give it a try your second green of the day definitely
different, not as acidic yeah sweetness mmhmm yeah really
delicious and both have really good texture by the way and that and this
also has got some of the green ones chopped up in it too. I like to put some of the yellow and
greens to balance out the color. Well you you pointed to the salsa. Next
to the salsa over there is this little variety and you know you really don’t know what
this is do you know we bought some tomatoes at the store last winter huh that were yellow great like shape and
they were so good i scraped a few seeds out on a paper towel and started some of
the greenhouse is one of the most productive little small tomatoes we’ve
got in the garden and it tastes good What do you think? It’s a little hard, but
that was probably an advantage in packing very sweet yeah wow it’s like a little flavor bomb
I love it. You’ve brought up a bunch of different
things and i want to highlight that. One thing is you have this beautiful bouquet of fresh basil and Basil and tomatoes are like peanut butter and
jelly right absolutely What I did this year was I had a
bunch of seed and after I planted my tomatoes I just threw some basil seed out in
front. Well it came up kind of thick but when
they were little plants I would dig them up and space them so i have a basil
hedge around my tomatoe patch and what we like to do with this when we
saw this recipe and one of the magazines or something but we chop up the basil
and we chop up some tomatoes right put that in a bowl and add some extra virgin
olive oil and some Italian spices a little garlic if you have garlic and you leave that room temperature for a couple hours cover it with a wrapper of some type and then when you get ready to fix your
supper that evening you cook the pasta, it’s nice and hot you put this room temperature fresh
tasting tomatoes concoction on top of it and it really makes a nice fresh pasta dish You’re not cooking
everything all the way through just pulling out that flavor that’s right yeah awesome and it’s nice it’s
got some acidity In addition to bringing the basil along
you have we have a nice little display over there of homemade salsa. Pico de gallo and chips and some of the chilies and and tomatoes that have gone into that. I see mouth-watering out here. what makes for a great salsa? Good
tomatoes I mean I can make an emergency salsa with Romans out of the grocery store if I have to put a little extra seasoning salt in it
maybe, but if you’ve got tomatoes that taste good sit down to a plate of slices and eat them
with a little salt you know and a fork and go to town. Those Tomatoes make great salsa and you can you can get that fresh complex sweetness out of salsa when you eat it, course
sometimes i get a little too much garlic in there and it has an effect too. We have fresh jalapenos, you don’t need too many for the home garden one or two plants
usually. They go pretty far yeah or you could can some people can them I guess I think I brought a few cans. Pickles and we can some Tomatoes make some tomato sauce These are pickels, bread
and butter pickles. I intercrop lot of my stuff I’ve got tomatoes and
then i’ll have pole beans or cucumbers between them cause i have the cages spaced pretty wide. Or sometimes I’ll use a tomatoe cage for a cucumber growing and things like that and makes it more
interesting to have variety of different things. Well there’s so many different
things here and we only have just a few seconds left so i want to try one
more tomatoe before we sign out here because I’m hungry and what are we looking at here? Dora.
Dora is a Cherokee purple brandywine cross and it actually sets
fruit pretty pretty rapidly here in this climate wow got some sweetness with enough acidity to be interesting beautiful balance big burst of flavor on
the tongue. Beginners tomato. People
want success when they’re starting. Almost all of the cherry tomatoes sweet
100, any of those are good they’re very flavorful. If you want to a cherry tomatoe, if you want a big tomato the hybrid even organic or heirloom growers like is big beef so
big beef would probably a good hybrid to try it will make nice big
tomatoes but they’re not all folded like some of the beef steak types and they’re
pretty productive. That’s a good tomatoe. Celebrity will
grow it’s a little hard texture-wise, better boys not bad. Thank you for being part of this show
coming up next is our friend Daphne

2 Comments

  • Reply Abbey Forney July 21, 2016 at 3:51 am

    His tomatoes are so beautiful. I'd love to hear his secret for keeping them free of stink bugs and leaf footed bugs.

  • Reply tonkatoytruck April 17, 2018 at 8:29 pm

    Nice man and an interesting interview. I think Better Boy was not given its due. Here in Houston, they consistently outgrow and outproduce my Big Beefs and Homesteads. I use a water soluble fertilizer mix (20-18-38) in a Dutch bucket system.

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