Tomato LIVE PLANT - CHEROKEE PURPLE Heirloom VEGETABLE
Believed to have originated in the Cherokee Nation in Tennessee more than a century ago.
80 days. An old Cherokee Indian heirloom, pre-1890 variety; beautiful deep dusky purple-pink color, superb sweet flavor, and very large sized fruit. Try this one for real
old-time tomato flavor. My favorite dark tomato!
DETAILS AND GROWING INFORMATION.
A beloved heirloom as valuable for its flavor as it is for its unusual look, Cherokee Purple sets giant beefsteaks weighing about a pound and filled with intense violet-purple hues. This is a true legacy plant, believed to have originated more than 120 years ago in the Cherokee nation in Tennessee. The vining plant is very heavy bearing, and each of these tomatoes is a masterpiece of color, flavor, and history. Do not miss this valuable fruit from the American past.
Slightly ridged and very symmetrically shaped, these tomatoes combine juiciness with a strong tomato tang, the type unknown to those rock-hard supermarket varieties. They may need some support as they mature on the plant, their massive weight pulling them downwards. Stake this vigorous plant well and then offer a little extra help to bring in its crop of giants!
Cherokee Purple is indeterminate, so it keeps growing and setting new fruit all summer long. You will find it very easy to grow and heavy bearing. For extra-large tomatoes, remove all but a few flowers, so the plant can concentrate its energy into fewer fruit.
Prepare a garden bed in a sunny, sheltered location, digging 3 inches of compost 9 to 12 inches into the soil.
Plant each tomato so that only the top pair of leaves appear above the soil. The stem and leaves buried in the soil will develop roots, making the plant stronger and able to rapidly absorb water and nutrients. Space the seedlings 24 to 36 inches apart.
Push a 4- to 6-foot stake into the soil next to each seedling. Tomatoes require staking or a tomato cage so the plants don't sprawl over the ground, making it difficult to pick the fruits. Tie the tomato's stem to the stake with soft plant ties or strips of recycled pantyhose as the plant grows.
Wind a soaker hose around the tomato plants or install a drip-watering system. Add a 3-inch layer of mulch around the tomatoes, but not touching the stems, to help maintain a consistent level of moisture in the soil.
Water regularly, as soon as the top inch of the soil is dry. "Black Krim" fruits are prone to cracking if the soil is allowed to dry out, watered, then allowed to dry out again.
Fertilize tomatoes weekly throughout the growing season with a balanced 10-10-10 fertilizer, liquid seaweed or compost tea. Always fertilize after watering so the fertilizer doesn't burn the tomato's roots.
Watch the tomato plants carefully for signs of pests such as the tomato hornworm. Pluck the worms off the tomato plants and drop them into a bucket filled with soapy water to kill them.
Harvest "Black Krim" tomatoes when they're fully ripe, a dark reddish purple or brown and still having dark green around the top, or shoulder, of the tomato.
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