Fleur de Lis

Fleur de Lis

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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Heirloom Cherokee Purple Tomatoes

I thought you might enjoying seeing a few pictures of our crop of Heirloom Cherokee Purple tomatoes. 

Here's some information if you're not familiar with this delicious variety:

This cultivar originated with Craig LeHoullier, who claimed it was a century-old cultivar originating with the Cherokee people. In 1990, while living in West Chester, Pennsylvania, Craig received unsolicited in the mail, from John Green of Sevierville, Tennessee, a brief note and a small packet of seeds. The note indicated that John wanted to share this unnamed tomato with Craig, and that it was a purple tomato that the Cherokee Indians gave to his neighbors 100 years ago. 

Cherokee Purples have an unusual deep purple/red hue. It was one of the first of the "black" color group of tomatoes. It is also unusual in being extremely popular for the sake of its flavor, instead of only its unusual color. Cherokee Purple tomatoes are beefsteak in style, with green "shoulders" across the top. They are also notable for having a dense, juicy texture, with small seed locules irregularly scattered throughout the flesh. The comparatively dark interior color is enhanced by the tendency of the seeds to be surrounded by green gel.

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