Growing and Cooking

Where should I grow my tomatoes

Cultivation Kitchen

Tomatoes are very adaptable plants and most will grow well in containers, in the ground, as well as under cover. Choose a site where you can appreciate the plants when they come into their full bloom. Growing tomatoes in pots means they are easy to transport, so you can position them where you like. They prefer a warm, sunny, sheltered position where they will have protection from excessive wind and rain. Large plants may become too top-heavy for the pot or exhaust the water and nutrient supply...

Ketchup of course

A book on tomatoes would not be complete without ketchup, so here is a recipe for classic tomato ketchup, in trademark red, with a green tomato variation, which is great for using up lots of unripe tomatoes. Makes about 4T2lb (2kg) Prep time 40 minutes Cooking time 2 hours peeled and coarsely chopped 1lb (500g) Granny Smith or other cooking apples, peeled, cored, and chopped 3 onions, chopped 3 4 cup granulated sugar 1 3 cup dark brown sugar 2 cups cider vinegar 1 tbsp salt V2 tsp chili powder...

A tomato for every climate

Because tomatoes originated in the coastal highlands of South America, they are not well adapted to extremes of temperature. However, some plants are more suited to some climates than others. Choosing appropriate tomato plants for your environment will give you a better chance of a successful crop. No tomato plants are able to survive frost, but there are a large number that have been developed to be able to crop successfully in cooler climates. However, if you have your heart set on growing a...

Food and drink

Like people, plants cannot exist without water, so make sure your tomato plants have enough to drink. Food is important too, and can boost your tomato crop. But with both food and drink, balance is key. Plants need water for transpiration, where moisture evaporates from open pores on their leaves, drawing more water up from their roots through tiny vessels. This process cools the plant and creates a transport system carrying water and nutrients around the plant. Transpiration is greatest in a...

Tomato peach and strawberry salad

Fruit salad with a twist Fresh and zinging with flavor, it is also a visual feast. Even if its fruits come into season at different times in your garden, depending on variety and where you live, you may still be able to catch them all at the same time. If you can't, go shopping. 1 Cut the tomatoes in half. (If using cherry tomatoes, cut them into halves or quarters, if large.) Halve and pit the peaches, and cut into wedges. Halve the strawberries, discarding the hulls. 2 Put the tomatoes,...

Tomato and mascarpone ice cream with raspberries

The flavor of the tomatoes here may be subtle, but it is an integral and entirely delicious element of this rich and creamy concoction. Confirmation, if it was needed, that the tomato is indeed a fruit. Makes about 1 quart (1 liter) Prep time 30 minutes Freezing time 2 hours 8oz (2 50g) ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and finely diced (mild-tasting varieties such as yellow or vine-ripened cherry tomatoes work best) V2 cup fresh raspberries 1 Put the tomatoes and raspberries in a glass bowl. Toss...

A little help from friends

The practice of growing plants that may have a beneficial effect on their neighbors is called companion planting. Plants that repel pests or that attract pollinating insects make good companions for crops. Keep companion plants 12-24in (30-60cm) extremely sticky and act as flypaper, from the main stems of tomato plants close enough to be beneficial, without competing with the tomatoes for nutrients. In a greenhouse or polytunnel, place pots of companions among the crop. Ideal plants to grow...