I was quite taken by the pictures I’ve seen for the past couple years of Indigo tomatoes, a new variety that was marketed as being a very dark purplish blue. I wanted to try them for myself and to save seeds to sell on Alchemy Works if they were worth saving. Here they are on the vine. They are indeed a very beautiful (and very Saturnian) indigo color. They kind of remind me of the color of those purple tomatillos. Indigo does seem to be a Nightshade family kind of color–think of eggplants, black and deadly nightshade berries, etc. It suits their association with Saturn.
The plants I’ve grown are very vigorous–more so than the other tomatoes I grew this year, with the exception of White Queen. The Indigo plants have made tons of tomatoes so far, but there has been a bit of a problem with them falling off before they are ripe. I’m not sure if this is something about the variety or if it’s because of the very cool summer we’ve been having. I’ve lived here ten years now, and this is the coolest summer ever–only 2 days so far of 90F/32C, none higher, and most days in the low 80sF/26C or even mid 70sF/21C. Last night it was like a night in September. Very unusual, but apparently predicted by something to do with El Nino that I don’t pretend to understand. I am very much enjoying the temperatures, and if I had my druthers, I’d rather summer remain this way, but it is good to have a sense of whether this kind of summer is now going to be normal for us here in upstate NY. Then us witches can plant accordingly.
The weather might also contribute to the Indigo tomatoes’ lack of taste. You really need plenty of good hot weather for tasty tomatoes. These are pretty mediocre. Better than the ones you buy in the store, and softer. You can see that when they are ripe, they are quite beautiful. They make me think of vampires. Probably if I were growing tomatoes just for taste, I would not grow these. But I love the way they look, so I might well grow them for that and have them in salads. They are not that big, so they’re handy for that. Still, they are the first to ripen so far. My Wapsipnicon Peach tomatoes, a fuzzy one that is a favorite of mine, is nowhere near ripening. One White Queen is ripening (these are beefsteak type and so will tend to ripen later, IME). Generally, the tomato plants are way smaller than normal by this time. A number of my tomato plants bit the dust early on because of the cool temperatures and my cruel negligence.
I will probably grow the Indigo tomatoes again next year. They do make me want to grow matching purple peppers. Oddly enough, the pepper plants are doing okay, despite the coolness. I did choose hybrid varieties this year, with the exception of Bullnose, which didn’t make it. I just wanted to have a lot of peppers. And here we get such a cool summer than I won’t get lots. So far, Pimiento Elite is the biggest plant and has the most peppers on it by far.