The ‘Pineapple tomato‘ is a variety that produces large red-orange fruits (even yellow ones) that have very few pips.
Its juicy, firm flesh is sweet and tasty, and it’ll work wonders in your tossed salads in summer.
Origin and characteristics
The ‘Pineapple tomato’ doesn’t owe its name to the color of its skin, as you might think, but rather to the appearance of its flesh which looks like a slice of a pineapple fruit. This variety has an indeterminate bearing: it never stops growing. You’ll have to stake it, and since each fruit can weigh up to 2 pounds (1kg), make sure the stakes are sturdy! As for how it tastes, the ‘Pineapple’ is very tasty, juicy, and lightly sweet. It’s a tomato with only very few seeds.
Planting ‘Pineapple tomato’
When prepared in places protected from frost, sowing can start as early as March (and even February in some areas). To do so, sow your seeds in groups of 3 at a depth of just under half an inch (1 cm). Regarding the substrate, you can prepare a blend of soil mix and a little sand. When the young sprouts have 2 leaves, select the most vigorous ones and transplant them in nursery pots.
Once you’ve gotten your hands on your ‘Pineapple’ tomato seedlings (either home-grown or purchased in a store), you can transplant them to the ground in May. Usually, there aren’t anymore risks of freezing in that month. To plant your tomato plants correctly, follow these few rules:
- dig an 8-inch (20 cm) hole;
- slant the tomato seedling as you set it in the hole;
- set up a strong stake, strong enough to bear the weight of those heavy fruits;
- backfill the hole, burying the stem all the way up to the first few leaves;
- water abundantly (without touching the foliage).
Care and growing guide
To get nice tomatoes, water the plants regularly, but without overdoing it. Make sure you don’t wet any leaves to avoid diseases. To lock moisture below ground in the soil, feel free to apply mulch: it will reduce water evaporation. When the first fruits appear, you can remove leaves (a few of them only) to expose the fruits, so they can ripen faster.
Diseases and pests:
The most important disease that can infect your ‘Pineapple’ tomato is downy mildew. A few other pests must also be watched out for, such as whitefly and the cotton bollworm.
Harvesting and keeping ‘Pineapple’ tomatoes
You’ll have to grow the plant for 4 to 5 months before getting ripe tomatoes. From that point on, depending on the sowing date, you can start harvesting from July to October. To best reap the nutritional and culinary benefits of your ‘Pineapple’ tomatoes, it’s best to harvest the ripe ones just as you’re about to eat them. If too many ripen at the same time (common at the end of the season), these fruit vegetables will keep for 5 to 6 days in the refrigerator.
Cooking with pineapple tomatoes
Whether you eat it alone, or mix it in with other vegetables, the ‘Pineapple’ tomato is ideal for salads. However, nothing should stop you from trying to prepare it in other manners. Just let our recipes inspire you!
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