Our plant sales in Walnut Creek and Richmond were a huge success!
We're feeling the love and support you offered us during this year's plant sales, and we're so very grateful.
We hope your veggie gardens thrive and offer you wonderful bounty.
We're leaving all our plant information in place for you to access if needed.
Plant Sale Tips:
Choose the Right Tomato
How do you decide which tomato variety to buy with almost 80 one-of-a-kind heirloom and hybrid tomatoes to choose from? We’re here to help you!
First, you need to decide which varieties will thrive where you live, so we’ve included two site-specific lists: tomatoes that grow well in cooler climates and those that need lots of heat. Next, determine where your tomatoes will be grown. If you are planting in containers, we’ve highlighted some of the best choices for growing in pots.
Now to the fun part: what do you want out of a tomato plant? Our curated lists share some of the best traditional tomatoes choices, as well as unusual varieties for the avant-garde grower.
Plant Sale Tips:
Growing Tomatoes in Containers
If you are limited on space, growing tomatoes in containers is a great alternative to planting in the ground. Make sure to choose a sunny spot that gets at least six hours of sunshine a day and follow these tips for a successful growing season.
What's New in '23
We are constantly updating our collection, based on our own experiences as gardeners as well as the latest information we hear from growers. This year we’ve added twelve new varieties to our collection. After you read more about them, you’ll want them all!
Beam’s Yellow Pear: Seed Savers Exchange named this cherry as the best yellow pear tomato, bar none. Huge plants produce large quantities of 1-ounce, 1.5 inch, bright yellow, pear-shaped fruits with a mild, sweet flavor that perk up any salad.
Glitter: Expect high yields from this small, grape-type cherry. These brilliant orange, very sweet fruits are like beautiful, little gems on the bush, but they won’t stay there for long. Perfect for snacking or in salads.
Big Beef Plus: If you loved the original Big Beef we’ve been offering, you’re going to absolutely adore this bigger, redder and even sweeter hybrid with improved disease resistances.
Chef’s Choice Bicolor Hybrid: The Chef Choice Series of hybrid tomatoes is one of our favorites and this year we’ve added two more to our collection. Chef’s Choice Bicolor was an All American Selection winner. With its sunset gold and red streaks, it’s eye-catching and the 10-12-ounce fruits are meaty and sweet.
Chef’s Choice Red Hybrid: Another All American Selection winner, but these are deep red, 9-12-ounce tomatoes that mature early for a beefsteak and have a delicious, well balanced flavor. Expect nearly 2 dozen fruits from every plant. Great for slicing!
German Johnson: A pink heirloom tomato that hails from the Mennonite farms of the South. (It needs heat.) Meaty, old-timey flavor tomatoes weigh up to one pound and have the exact diameter of a burger bun! Perfect!
Granadero: Give your tomato sauces an extra special twist with the sweet-and-spicy flavor to this paste tomato. No wonder its name means “grenade thrower” in Italian. It packs a punch! The fruits have few seeds and are meaty with thick skins. It’s also very disease resistant.
Paisano: This determinate tomato grows well in a container which was why we wanted this pear-shaped, paste tomato in our collection. It’s also exceptionally high in natural sugars, unusual in paste tomatoes. Compact plants still have high yields. A winner on all counts for a small garden!
Bush Early Girl: A determinate sister of Early Girl, it produces even more tomatoes and is earlier than its older sister, but just as reliable. Do we need to say more? Well, one more thing: it grows well in a large pot.
Moskvich: An extra early tomato that produces perfect fruit all summer long, has a delicious, rich flavor and grows well in cooler conditions—simply a great combo.
Rose de Berne: This beautiful, dark pink Swiss heirloom tomato tops the charts in taste tests where its flavor is described as both “exquisite” and “unique.” Vigorous plants produce excellent yields of globe-shaped fruits with no blemishes.
Tasti Lee: Its name says it all: Tasti Lee has a sensational flavor, perfectly balancing acidity and sweetness. Bright red, inside and out, rich in antioxidants, these tomatoes remain delicious long after harvesting.
Helpful Vegetable Growing Tips & Techniques
Love vegetables? Want to grow your own? Wondering how? Use these great tips from the UC Master Gardener Program of Contra Costa County.
First discovered in the Andes more than two thousand years ago, the tomato was cultivated extensively by the Aztecs and then taken by Spanish explorers to Europe in the sixteenth century. Initially, it was thought to be poisonous because it was a member of the nightshade family. Italians were the first to discover its culinary prowess and introduce it into their cuisine. Once tomatoes caught on, they spread across Europe and adapted again and again to the climate and soil of each specific region.
Tomatoes come in a dazzling spectrum of colors, belying that aphorism that 'red' is synonymous with 'tomato'. Colors range from black, purple, pink, green, orange and even white to every shade of red imaginable. There are also spectacularly beautiful striped tomatoes like Big Rainbow and Chocolate Stripe.
Each tomato variety has its own unique taste. Some are sweet and fruity; others have rich, complex flavors, acidic and tangy. Tomatoes are the Queens of the veggie garden—nothing tastes better than a home-grown tomato!