Tomato - Cherokee Purple
Sweetly flavored, colorful fruit. Very productive heirloom variety with dusky rose-purple fruit and deep red flesh. The soft flesh has a rich, pleasingly sweet flavor, excellent for slicing. A thin-skinned, beefsteak-type tomato averaging 10 to 12 ounces. Stake or cage for best production. Expect some shoulder cracking. Indeterminate habit.
Water Day/Week -- Water regularly for one week after setting plants in the garden. Tomatoes need at least one inch of water per week, maybe more depending on the weather. Water early in the day, deeply at the roots. Avoid splashing on leaves as moisture retained on the foliage overnight could trigger disease on your tomatoes. Do not overwater.
Harvest -- Eat fresh from the garden or can be used for canning. Will ripen to a dusky rose to pink color. Prone to some green shoulders and cracking. You can reduce this damage by picking early and ripening inside. Take a ripe apple and place it in a paper bag with the tomatoes. The apple gives off ethylene gas which will help ripen the fruit.
Spacing -- 24 to 36" apart
Exposure -- Full Sun
Mature Size -- 85 days
Feature -- Excellent slicer
Heirloom Variety -- Yes
Kid-Friendly -- Yes
Container Friendly -- No
Soil pH -- 5.5 to 7.0
Time to plant -- After danger of frost has passed and temperatures warm
Fertilizer -- Apply 10-10-10 at two to three pounds per 100 square feet of garden space. Work into the top 4-6" of the soil, then transplant. When fruits reach 1", start side dressing every 2 weeks using one level tablespoon 6" from the stem and work it into the soil. Water plant immediately after.
Pests to avoid -- Aphids, cutworms, hornworms, whiteflies, nematodes, flea beetles
Companions -- Carrots, Queen Anne's Lace, basil, nasturtium, parsley, lavender, borage, thyme, lemon balm, asparagus, marigolds and foxglove (digitalis)
Avoid planting by -- Corn, kohlrabi, mature dill plants (harvest before seed heads form) and fennel