Growing The Earliest Ripe Tomatoes

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UP DATE as of 2011

Although the following was written back in 2002, we continue to offer the seeds and guide because they have been so popular with our readers.  So don't let the dates concern you, we still grow Glacier and Ida Gold tomatoes because they are dependable great tasting early tomatoes and encourage you to also.  These seeds along with the growing guide are a fantastic deal.  



Get the first ripe tomatoes in your neighborhood:

If you want to grow the first ripe tomato in your neighborhood (or even a bigger area, like a state or province), you have found the place to help you.   We won the "First Ripe Tomato Race" in Michigan for 2002 and beat the winner (we didn't know there was a race to enter) for 2001 by 21 days.  We live in zone 5 and had our first ripe tomato on May 5, 2002 and May 30, 2001!!!  No kidding.  Here in Michigan that is truly amazing, it isn't unusual to hear of people waiting until August to get ripe tomatoes.  Michigan no longer has a "First Ripe Tomato" contest, but we are happy with winning once.


By mid June we had picked over 150 ripe tomatoes from 30 plants.

We have been working on growing early tomatoes for at least 10 years.  Every year we are able to get the date of our first picking earlier and earlier.  May 5th, 2002 is our record breaker.  We keep notes and change our procedures; now we feel we have it perfected.  We have learned how to avoid "damping off" (a fatal disease of seedlings), what kind of tomatoes to grow, when to start them, when to move them up into larger pots and the best way to do it, what kind of light to use, watering, fertilizing, how to harden them off, etc.  When our plants go outside they are strong and beautiful and ready to produce.  No need to pinch off blossoms or tiny tomatoes; the roots are robust and ready to support them.


All of that to say, we finally have something to sell!!  Our readers have asked us if we sell anything and now we can say, "yes!"  We have put hundreds of dollars into this web site and continue to spend money on it every month; we would greatly appreciate your business and all proceeds will go to the support of this web site.  It means a lot to us to have something to sell that is valuable, priced reasonable and unique.  If you are interested in having early ripe tomatoes, (or even just want to learn how to grow your own healthy plants), buy our 'Growing the Earliest Ripe Tomatoes Guide' along with two "early tomato seed packets".  Along with the information you will receive two types of early heirloom tomato seed packets: seed packets contain 25 seeds each, a total of 50 seeds. 


One of the tomatoes in an heirloom called Glacier.  It is a red tomato with superior flavor.  The other type is called Ida Gold; it is a beautiful golden orange tomato with flavor that is superb.  If you have ever grown early tomatoes before and found their flavor lacking you will be pleasantly surprised to finally find early tomatoes worth the effort to grow.  The Ida Gold can reach 2oz. and the Glacier will be about 3oz to 4oz. in size.  Both are determinate type tomatoes.


We are selling the "Growing the Earliest Ripe Tomato Guide" and two seed packets for $7.00 plus $2.00 (U.S. funds) for postage and handling.  You could search the Internet and find the seeds for $9.00 but not get the guide; so you can see that for $9.00 you are getting a great deal.  To buy the guide and seeds send a check or money order made payable to "Diane Franklin" to:

Diane Franklin

9635 Ryella Lane

Davisburg, Mi. 48350


If you are purchasing the guide and seeds I would appreciate it if you would just send me a note to let me know.  I will get the package ready to send to you as soon as I receive your money.  Thank-you in advance, any money we bring in will go to the support of this web site.  [Click here to send me a note]


Below are some pictures of this year's early tomato.

Click on one of the "Thumbnails" below to view a larger picture.  Use your browser's "Back" button to get back to this page.

32.jpg (118610 bytes)33.jpg (132979 bytes)34.jpg (141949 bytes) 4/15/02  Two days after the plants were set out.


57.jpg (93208 bytes) 4/20/02  We use Wall-O-Waters for protection against frost; available through garden centers and seed catalogs.

63.jpg (78163 bytes) 4/21/02  John felt we needed more protection when the weather dropped into the 20's.  Advertising for the WOW's state they protect by themselves down to 20 degrees.  But it made John feel better!

130.jpg (110865 bytes)132.jpg (140348 bytes)133.jpg (129601 bytes)134.jpg (127201 bytes)211.jpg (138189 bytes)  5/5/02  

Here is the amazing May 5th, 2002 tomato in Zone 5, Michigan!  And they just kept coming!

Plants grow much bigger than the pictures show, remember, it is only May in these pictures so the plants are still babies.


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