Seeds are inherited and harvested from a Premium Strain of Extra Large Tomatoes average weight of 1.6 to 2 lbs.
Beefsteak is one of the most popular heirloom tomato varieties for the home garden. It is aptly named for the deep red color, large size and meaty texture. They have a classic tomato flavor but with a kick of sweetness and few seed cavities which makes them ideal for culinary uses. They are heavy, sometimes reaching 4 pounds, but most weigh in at about a quarter to one pound in the average home garden. The vines grow vigorously and should be staked or trellised to support their weight.
Tomatoes are available in a wide variety of shapes, color and sizes. They are broadly classified into two categories:
- Determinate are those that grow to pre-determined height. They are good choices for canning and sauces.
- Indeterminate are those that continue to grow in height and produce fruits throughout the growing season.
- Select a site with full sun. For northern regions, it is VERY important that your site receives at least 6 hours of daily sunlight.
- Tomatoes will grow in many different soil types, but it needs to be well drained. They prefer a slightly acid soil with a pH of 6.2 to 6.8.
- Start seeds indoors 6 to 8 weeks before the average last spring frost date.
- Two weeks before planting tomato plants outdoors, dig into soil and mix in aged manure or compost.
- Harden off seedlings for a week before planting in the garden. Set young plants outdoors in the shade for a couple of hours the first day, gradually increasing the amount of time the plants are outside each day to include some direct sunlight.
- Place tomato stakes or cages in the soil at the time of planting to avoid damaging roots later on.
- Apply fertilizer such as 5-10-5, or 10-10-10 per package instructions. Do not apply high nitrogen fertilizers, as they promote luxurious foliage growth but will delay flowering and fruiting.
- Space tomato transplants at least 2 feet apart.
- Plant the root ball deep enough so that the lowest leaves are just above the surface of the soil.
- If transplants are leggy, bury up to ⅔ of the plant including lowest leaves. Tomato stems have the ability to grow roots from the buried stems.
- Be sure to water the transplant thoroughly to establish good root/soil contact and prevent wilting.
- Newly set transplants may need to be shaded for the first week or so to prevent excessive drying of the leaves.
- Water generously the first few days that the tomato seedlings or transplants are in the ground.
- Water well throughout the growing season, about 2 inches (about 1.2 gallons) per week during the summer.
- Water in the early morning. This gives plant the moisture it needs to make it through a hot day. Avoid watering late afternoon or evening.
- Mulch after transplanting to retain moisture and to control weeds. Mulch also keeps soil from splashing the lower tomato leaves.
- Watering in with a starter fertilizer solution will help get the roots off to a good start.
- Side dress plants with fertilizer or compost every two weeks starting when fruits are about 1 inch in diameter.
- If staking, use soft string or old nylon stocking to secure the tomato stem to the stake.
- It is essential to remove the suckers (side stems) by pinching them off just beyond the first two leaves.