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Sharing the Way

April 8, 2013

DSC_0012Connie and Carroll Devore have lived in their farmhouse in Crown City, Ohio for over 21 years. At an age when most of us “city folk” feel justified to take it easy, they are not planning on slowing down. On just over an acre of land they have continued a way of life that became not only economically practical over the years that they raised their families, but made a lot of sense to them when they started getting concerned about Big Ag and Big Business affecting the quality of the food they wanted to eat. The only way, they believed, was to grow as much of their own produce as they could.DSC_0021

Connie starts pouring over her seed catalogs as soon as they arrive in January and narrows down the succulent selections to provide a variety of tomatoes for salads, sauces and salsa,; peppers that run from sweet to piquant; and other vegetables, including sweet potatoes.DSC_0007

The seeds are started inside with grow lights and a fan to help stimulate growth. Soon it will be time to move the seedlings , ranging in size from 4 to 12 inches, to the greenhouse where they will start “hardening up”, the method to step seedlings through the process of moving to the garden. Planting typically is the middle of May for tomatoes.DSC_0003

When the Devores discovered The Wild Ramp Market last fall they were excited. Finally they could find foods that were local and information was available about the farms and the growing methods.  They tend not to eat much meat but feel pleased knowing the Wild Ramp selection is ASH-free (no antibiotics, no steroids, no hormones). DSC_0009

They will be bringing seedlings to the Wild Ramp Spring Fling Saturday, April 13 from 10-4 for sale. Connie reports that almost all are heirloom varieties and some are from certified organic seeds.

 

striped romanStriped Roman Tomato Organic

75-80 days. Very unique. These long, roma-shaped tomatoes have orange stripes running down the length of the fruit. Tomatoes are very thick and meaty with a nice rich flavor.

roma vfRoma VF

Premium canner, ideal for sauce and paste. Pear-shaped scarlet fruits are thick and meaty with few seeds. Determinate. 75 days.

 

olpakiOpalka Tomato

Also known as Gilberti. This is one of the best paste tomatoes we know, primarily because it makes sauce so good and sweet that you wouldn’t even have to add flavoring to it. Tomatoes are large, at least 5 inches long, and shaped like a banana pepper with a pronounced tip on the bottom. The fruit has very few seeds and is extremely meaty with a rich, sweet flavor. Although they make outstanding sauce, these tomatoes are good enough to eat fresh. Heirloom variety originally from Poland. 75 days.

cosmonautOrganic Cosmonaut Volkov

This Ukrainian tomato wins taste test after taste test. Perfect blend of sweet and tart, with a rich complexity. Fruits can range from 8-12 oz and are slightly flattened with a healthy red color and moderately green shoulders. Prone to cracking in wet conditions, but not nearly as much as Brandywine. Produces high yields even in cool conditions. Works well in low tech tunnels.

280px-Tomato_'Cherokee_Purple'_(Lycopersicon_lycopersicum)Cherokee Purple

80 days. An old Cherokee Indian heirloom, pre-1890 variety; beautiful deep dusky purple-pink color, superb sweet flavor, and very large sized fruit. Shoulders will remain green when ripe. Try this one for real old-time tomato flavor.

mtg lifterMortgage Lifter

This huge heirloom beefsteak (up to 4 lb.; average 2½ lb.) consistently wins taste-tests. Developed in the 1930s by a gardener who planted the four biggest varieties he knew and crossed one with pollen from the other three. He did this for six seasons and created a variety that produced immense, tasty fruit. He sold the plants for $1 a piece and paid off his $6000 mortgage in 6 years.

chianti roaseChianti Rose

This heirloom variety is fine skinned, heavy with flesh, it has some Brandywine in its genes, and truly delicious. It tolerates cooler summers than most tomatoes. But don’t forget to keep it watered as that does a lot to eliminate cracks. A very heavy producer.

 

country tasteCountry Taste Hybrid

This large, juicy beefsteak variety offers great “heirloom quality” flavor plus the disease resistance of a hybrid.Firm, meaty texture and rich, red color makes it a natural for both salads and fresh eating. Fruit can weigh up to a pound or more and holds well without splitting or cracking.

 

kelloggKellogg’s Breakfast Tomato

85 days. 1 pound pale to deep orange beefsteak tomato originally from West Virginia that are thin-skinned, meaty and have few seeds. Fantastic, sweet tangy flavor. Juice and inside flesh same bring orange color.

Connie and Carroll Devore

Crown City, Ohio

740-256-6445

devoreranch@gmail.com

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4 Comments leave one →
  1. Dubrovniklady permalink
    April 8, 2013 2:20 pm

    It will be some months before the local tomatoes will be available here, I await with great anticipation. The photos made my mouth water with delight.

    • April 9, 2013 10:37 am

      I notice as each new crop is brought into the Market, it evaporates. *G* We are all so eager for the taste of the new fresh food!

  2. April 9, 2013 4:41 pm

    If you are a foodie, you have to try the DeVore Ranch’s Cherokee Purple tomatoes in a mozzarella salad. Then try a hamburger or veggie burger with the Country Taste brand. If you like pasta dishes use their Cosmonaut Volkov. I wish I knew how to can…. But enjoy the fresh ones while they last.

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