Above: Did you notice the unusual
looking leaves on the Spitze tomatoes from above? Here is
a close up view. I am holding the leaf straight and normal
off the tomato plant. See how it corkscrews? This unusual
kind of quality must be a natural characteristic of the Spitze
tomato. The leaves are also more narrower than any other variety
I've seen and they like to show their undersides to the sun,
instead of the top. From the time it was about 3 weeks old,
the leaves on this plant looked - different. This photo was
take on June 2nd, during comfortable temps, so the heat is
not causing it to twist, curl, corkscrew, fold in half or
flip upside down. It does this on it's own.
Update: June 15, 2009
The two OLDER Spitze and the
Roma Classic tomato plants really grew a lot in the last 2
weeks. Each one has shot up another 6 to 8 inches. The Romas
are 30 to 36 inches tall, and the Spitzes are about 48 inches
tall. Shortly after the past update photos were taken, the
Roma began producing tomatoes. (See Roma
Classic journal for photos.)
Although the Spitze is getting to be quite big for it's age,
it has only produced two or three blooms. The same for my
2 other Spitze tomato plants. Meanwhile, not only does the
Roma Classic have plenty of blooms, each Roma plant has about
6 to 8 tomatoes on them. I've been watering once a day unless
it rains. The temperatures are slowly starting to climb and
soon I will be watering twice a day and adding mulch to the
base to keep the roots cool and the moisture locked in.
Spitze characteristics: - This
tomato plant really is different from all my other tomato
plants, including the non paste tomatoes. Out of all of them
(about 32), the spitze has the least amount of blooms so far.
About 3 on each one. That's not much compared to all my others.
Further, the leaves are still curled, corkscrewed and prefer
to show their undersides to the Sun. If this is a true Romanian
tomato, this tomato might prefer cooler weather. Romania is
on the same latitude as South Dakota and North Dakota - in
there somewhere. My gut feeling when watching this tomato
grow is that it is very sensitive and "dainty."
- However, this may not be true as it just seems content to
continue growing up and out, doing it's thing and surviving
nicely, despite the small number of blooms - so far. It might
just mature later than originally thought. However, something
tells me that if nature goes through this much trouble with
this tomato plant, then the tomatoes have to be especially
delicious. Time will tell.
Here's a mistake I made that
you can learn from. I didn't put enough soil in the buckets
when I started. I failed to calculate that rain and water
would compact the soil downward and I am staring to get more
room on top then I need for the mulch. With these small 5
gallon buckets, I want my tomato plants to have as much soil
as possible. If you grow your's in containers, put more soil
in or fill it to 1 inch (2 cm) from the top when you begin.
The rain and water will push that soil down before the time
comes to add mulch.
Mini Update: June 17th
The 2 oldest Spitze's have a few more blooms
on them and each one has little tiny tomato that is starting
to come out.