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Solanum lycopersicum

Ferris Wheel Tomato

Regular price $4.95 USD
Regular price Sale price $4.95 USD
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90 days. The outstanding flavor of Ferris Wheel knocked us off our feet when Ryan Padgett of Radicle Roots Farm brought this large beefsteak to our 2017 Harvest Festival’s tomato tasting; it has been a favorite ever since. Large, pink, 1 lb fruits are lusciously juicy, sweet, and complex. This variety traces back to the homeplace of Erica’s grandparents (La Cross, Wisconsin) in 1894. Plants are vigorous and productive. Alas, as is common with old, heirloom beefsteaks, fruits may crack and don’t store well – all the better for fresh eating!  Fantastic in salads and on sandwiches. Rescued from oblivion by tomato aficionado and breeder, Craig LeHoullier. Listed on Slow Food’s Ark of Taste. Indeterminate. (aka Salzer’s Ferris Wheel) NN

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Growing Instructions (for USDA Zone 5b):

Start tomato seeds inside at least 6 weeks before last frost (around 4/1). Ideal temperature for germination is 85°  (use a heating mat). Days to germination: 5-14. Once leaves appear, grow plants at 72°. Plant seedlings outside late May into fertile garden soil (with lots of compost or decomposed manure) at a spacing of 18” apart. Stake tomato plants. Tomatoes are susceptible to several fungal diseases (including Early and Late Blight and Verticillium Wilt). To prevent blight, keep foliage dry by 1) Pruning tomato plants to allow for good air circulation 2) Water with drip irrigation/soaker hoses. Crop rotation is also key to preventing tomato diseases. Ideally, plant tomato plants in a spot that has not had any Solanaceae crops (tomato, peppers, eggplant, potatoes) growing there for 4 years. Frequent watering will help to minimize cracking of tomatoes.


Harvest when fruit are fully red ripe and soft when squeezed.

Seed Saving Instructions for gardeners:

Tomatoes are relatively easy seed-saving crops. They are primarily self-pollinated but may be crossed pollinated by insects when different tomato varieties are planted next to one another. You can just save seed and see what you get! Isolation distance of 10ft will minimize crossing while 150’ is necessary to eliminate it. Always harvest seed from the best plants. It is best, but not totally necessary, to collect seeds from a minimum of 6 plants. Collect ripe tomatoes and cut and squeeze out seeds. See instructions for fermenting seeds. Rinse and dry seeds on a screen or wax paper.

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Growing Instructions