About six weeks ago, we planted young tomato vines purchased from Fullerton College.
One of the vines is Sprite grape tomotoes, indeterminate in growth pattern. It is rapidly taking over its corner of the flowerbed, with skillions of flowers and tiny fruit. All of the fruit remain pale green, without a hint of a blush of red.
Another is Indigo Rose, developed by Oregon State University to collect a natural anti-oxidant in the skins of its fruit — the tomatoes turn a deep purplish blue wherever sunlight hits them.
(A third variety was bought at the Rossmoor Festival and is well behind the others in development. It is just beginning vigorous growth, has only two or three flowers and no fruit set. But any fruit that it produces will be enormous — up to one-and-a-half pounds suitable for slicing for sandwiches.)
The oldest Indigo Rose fruit are about an inch and a half wide, with their tops and west-facing sides darkened by sunlight. (The vine is planted in front of a west-facing wall.) They do not appear to be growing any larger.
The interior of the fruit will be tomato red once it has ripened.
Although all of my Indigo Rose tomatoes still cling tightly to their vine, this morning I gave in to obsession to pick one and slice it open in order to check how far along it is.
Impatient for vine-ripened tomatoes? Me? Oh, yes.
This is the tomato on the right in the featured photo for this article, sliced in half in order to see how far along ripening has come.
Not so far, it seems.
More waiting. I am guessing that once they start ripening, we’ll be flooded with tomatoey goodness.
Indigo Rose tomatoes ripening on a vine in Cypress, CA. Not yet ready for picking!
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- Indigo Rose tomatoes have set (oc-breeze.com)