2012 Heirlooms
Crop Guide
6202 Walkers Line,
Burlington, ON

Tomatoes at Hutchinson Farm
Rebecca and a basket of tomatoes
Photo: Rebecca MacTavish, September 4th, 2003 at Hutchinson Farm, her Dad was the photographer,  and she didn't actually like tomatoes!
Grown at Hutchinson Farm since forever. Available early June to early October, 2018.

Each year around the end of July, you'll start to find tomatoes for sale at our farm.
Whether it's big slicers for your sandwiches, sweet cherries for snacking, plum tomatoes for your sauces, or a rainbow of beautiful colours for your salads, we have a tomato with your name on it.

Extra Early Cherries
Tired of bland tomatoes? We grow Terenzo cherry tomatoes in our greenhouse and they are ready in early June! We also have hanging baskets of these red yummies for sale in May, so you can harvest your own.

Heirloom Tomatoes

We didn't always grow heirlooms. In 2008 we grew a few Brandywine tomatoes (the most famous heirloom), loved it, and became heirloom tomato converts. The following year we grew about a dozen heirloom tomatoes and sold them at our farm, to the delight of many. We now eat nothing but heirlooms, and look forward to trying more of the literally thousands of heirloom tomato varieties in the years to come. Heirlooms are not the best looking tomatoes: they can have lots of cracks and skin blemishes. Do you buy your tomatoes for their looks, or their taste? Check out our (lengthy) guide, to see what varieties we have this year: Heirloom Tomato Guide

Sauce Tomatoes
Canning your own tomatoes is a lot of work, but come winter, the hard work is long forgotten, and the flavour of our sauce tomatoes is second to none. More info here!

Hybrid Tomatoes

We have been growing hybrid tomatoes for years, and our customers tell us they are great tomatoes. But not all hybrids are the same, and they aren't always grown to taste good. Many hybrid tomatoes are tasteless and grown for their good looks, yield potential, and uniformity (go to any fast food restaurant and check them out). Not all hybrids are like that. Some hybrids taste great when picked properly (ie ripe!). We have a great selection of mouthwatering hybrid tomatoes that look great, and taste even better.

We need your feedback! Join our community of heirloom tomato lovers, tell us you favourite varieties, your experiences in eating and growing them. You can talk to us in person at our farm, join us at Hutchinson Farm on FaceBook or send us an email.

Some things you might want to know about tomatoes
Did you know most store bought slicing tomatoes are picked green? Did you know most plum tomatoes (ie. romas) are artificially ripened and harvested by machine? That's not the way we do it! We do not wholesale or ship our tomatoes. We pick our tomatoes by hand, and only when they are ripe. This means they'll taste delicious. This means you'll be happy for 10 weeks of the year when you can eat our tomatoes (sorry about the rest of the year).

What is an heirloom tomato?
Seeds from heirloom tomatoes will produce fruit that is identical to the parent tomato (unless a natural mutation or accidental cross has occurred). This makes it possible to pass down heirloom tomatoes for years and years, even over generations. There are thousands of different heirloom tomatoes with different flavours, textures, shapes, sizes, juiciness, sweetness, etc. Many have outstanding knock your socks off flavour, but others are quite mild. We grow them for their flavour, and who cares if they don't have the good looks of the hybrids!

What is a hybrid tomato?
A hybrid tomato is a deliberate cross of two tomato varieties. Seeds grown from hybrid tomatoes will often produce fruit that is different from the parent tomato. Most modern tomatoes (post 1930's) are hybrids. They are often grown for their perfect looks and uniform size.

What is a beefsteak tomato?
Beefsteak refers to size and shape only. Beefsteak is not a specific variety, it does not refer to how the seeds are distributed within the tomato, nor does it have anything to do with flavour. Any large flat tomato is a beefsteak tomato. You will often see tomatoes mislabeled as Beefsteaks.