Love Apple Farms: Spring Plant Sale with Variety List

Love Apple Farms

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Cynthia Sandberg

Dear Kathryn: Sorry to hear you haven't had much luck with tomatoes or vegetables. I'd suggest coming to our Summer Vegetable Gardening class. We have several coming up. Take a look at the page entitled "Classes and Workshops" and you'll find it. Common errors I see are: insufficient light (too much shade), insufficient fertilizer (assuming your native soil has proper nutrients may be incorrect), improper spacing, watering using sprinklers rather than by hand or drip irrigation. Hope to see you out for a workshop or a visit to the nursery. Our plant sale and classes are at the same location in Scotts Valley.


Delighted to find this event on Palo Alto Patch and hope to make it over there sometime. We are in our eighties. My husband and I have not had success with tomatoes, or vegetables in general. Perhaps their need for very regular watering, not too much, not too little. Pruning errors? I bought Sweet 100s from Ace and got about 10 little tomatoes. Three other varieties did slightly better. Squirrels got to them before we did. I think I have found a source of information that will help! We will try again this year with better information and plants. Isn't it too early to transplant in mid-April?


I would like to know if you sell and ship your tomato plants?
Also, have you considered doing your classes on line or webcam for those of us that live in other parts of the country? I'd love to take some of them but I live in Va. I'm sure there are a lot of others that feel the same way.
Thanks so much for sharing.


Please say that the White Oxheart will be back this year! It was one of the stars of our 2014 garden. In our garden in Emeryville, it produced until the end of November.


What are the best varieties to grow in pots?

Cynthia Sandberg

Hi Laurie. No, it's not possible to grow them inside an apartment or a house. So sorry!


Hi I'm interested in having a tomato plant, but as an apartment renter I don't have my own space outside. Is it possible to grow potted tomatoes indoors?

Marilyn Fleming

Dear Cynthia.
Just wanted to tell you how nice it was to really meet you last Sunday at the SF Flower Show and to thank you for 'hooking me up' with some suppliers. Altho the GeoPot people were out of the 20 gal. containers, Amanda assured me she would take my order by phone. I called them on Tues., got the order on Wed. Nice to know you can order by phone or online and don't have to find a local supplier wherever one lives. Since I'm in Alameda, your resources don't always work for me. Then I talked to the Gardner & Bloom people and they dropped of bag of Blue Ribbon Blend at my local nursery that doesn't normally sell that particular product.

I have so many tomatoes from your seedling class - an ABUNDANCE. Last year I grew 5 in my limited space, small yard. This year I'm aiming for 10 using the GeoPots to add more plants. I guess this year is going to be the Year of the Tomato in my garden.

I'd just like to add one item for your readers. . .I gardened with my kids as they were growing up and am now doing so with my grandkids who fortunately live locally. It's something we can do together. This is my contribution to their 'education'. It is SO enriching. I would just encourage anyone with a child available to get them out there. Do whatever is age appropriate, let them set the pace, and do it enthusiasm and reverence.

A small anecdote. . .when my grandson was 3 or 4 (he's now 7), he was invited over for a half day, it was tomato planting time and I made the mistake of telling him we needed to dig a hole 2 ft. deep but whatever he could dig would be great. I figured that was a lot of digging for a little guy. I told him about five times he could stop whenever he got tired, but we measured and he dug, measured and dug, etc. and the little guy made my 2 ft. hole for me. So you just never know what will take their fancy.

I could go on and on with rewarding experiences in the garden with my kids and grands, it's part of our history together.

I love getting your newsletter and really appreciate your thoughtful instructions and updates. Take care & have a busy, fun growing season.

Marilyn Fleming

Love Apple Farms

Hi Anjil. The grafted tomatoes for 2013 sale will be $6.99 each. I know, I know...PRICEY! But there is a LOT of work on our part associated with a grafted plant. So we can't let them go for the price of a cup of coffee at Starbucks. I also just saw grafted toms up at SF Flower show going for $8 each.


"Legend" is an awesome tomato !! Glad you are going to offer it. Have you guys ever tried "Carol Chyko" ? Another great one. See you at the sale, end of March. How much will the grafted ones sell for ?


Count me in. I'm not a farmer (well cofrnimed by my depressing little veggie patch) but I've read So Shall We Reap' and I'm on a sharp learning curve. I want a future where my son can afford to feed his family good, healthy, clean food, sustainably/humanely produced, so I'd be very pleased to join you in this campaign.

Rusty Willingham

To whomever might read this I just want to say how much I enjoy my tomatoes from the plants I purchased from you guys last spring. One of my plants was unbelievable. It was a green zebra that was grafted. I had never heard of a "grafted" tomatoe plant. I have now! It grew to be 12 feet by 12 feet across and produced more than two hundred tomatoes! I'm not exagerating. I also didn't fertilize my garden this year. I keep it organic. I live on the eastside of santa cruz and have a small garden, about 700 sq. ft. I hope you have many more grafted tomato plants this year. I also had about ten other heirloom and other tomato plants from your farm and they did good also. FYI. One of my volunteer sunflowers grew a head 24 inches across.I look forward to your tomato sale in march.

Thankyou guys for your hardwork and nice farm.

Love Apple FArm

Hi Lynda. What you probably had last year was Late Blight. I put out a newsletter blast about it and tutored folks on how to combat it so as not to lose their tomato patches. That's a good reason to sign up for our email newsletter! I'll add you to it!

lynda haller

I always have at least 20 tomatoe plants, heirloom, each year for baking. Last year all went well, the tomatoes set and when they started to ripen all my vines turned brown, wilted and died. What can I do to not have this happen again We live in Corralitos.

Love Apple FArm

Hi Anton. You can add some bone meal and dry organic fertilizer to the top of the soil and try to dig it into the pot. You can also add soil on top of those amendments, to top off the pot. I would also water every week, without fail, with worm casting tea.


I planted my tomatoes in pots before reading your article on container tomatoes. What fertilizer or amendments can I add to the surface of the soil to help my tomatoes?

Love Apple Farms

Hi Vicky. We use Gardner & Bloom's Organic Tomato, Vegetable and Herb fertilizer in addition to our biodynamic compost and worm castings. We also throw some bone meal, eggshells and a fish head in our tomato planting holes.

Vicky Matisi

What does Love Apple use as Tomatoe Fertilizer and do yo have this posted on your website for us to read?

Love Apple Farms

Michael: There are lots of reasons for tomato leaves curling: too much nitrogen, varietal predilection, bright sunlight after extended period of low light or overcast days, or a virus of some sort. If you can rule out all the other possibilities, you may want to send a plant sample in for diagnosis to a reputable lab, like Plant Disease Diagnosis in Walnut Creek. But if your plants are otherwise doing well, you may want to ignore it.


So my wife and I picked up both an OSU Purple (which she won by way of a guessing game with the young gent running the stand that day) and a Great White.

Both are happily potted (~15-20Gal) basking in the sun on a deck in Burlingame getting approximately ≥10 hrs of sun daily... The OSU is starting some small fruit and the Great White is thinking hard.

Why would either of these plants have curly leaves? They are certainly getting enough water and I've pretty much run by the book you've prescribed sans fish head. ;-)


Hillary Schalit

I would LOVE to give my husband this week's contest prize, Tomato Goodness, because I am SO proud of all he has learned and done in our garden these past few years. He has built 7 raised beds out of recycled lumber and is trying to convince me to let him take over the rest of the lawn. We weren't very successful with our tomatoes last year but we bought 8 more seedlings from you a few weeks ago and intend to try again. I know he'd love to have 8 more! And, his birthday is coming up (5/25)!!


My current fav color is chocolate-purple! Love your website and newsletter :)


My favorite tomato color is deep, brilliant red.

Love Apple Farm

Hi Asinsigalli: I'm going to suggest for top of the summit (higher elevations): Elfie, Siletz, Jetsetter, Jet Star, Marmande, Black Ethiopian, Juane Flamme, Matina, and Taxi. Those are all available at our tomato plant sale at 46 El Pueblo Road in Scotts Valley. Come on over!


My favorite tomato color is orange! Tobolsk was one of my best-tasting and most productive tomatoes last year. Every time I went to the garden and saw new ones coloring up, I was thrilled.

Hmm, but Tobolsk tied with Purple Brandy last year for taste and productivity, so I also love purple/black tomatoes.

But my favorite tomato color to let other people taste is green. Green is the only color I let vine-ripen, because the critters usually don't taste it. It's fun to hand someone a piece of Aunt Ruby's German Green, warm from the garden, and watch the surprise on their face as they eat it.

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