True Black Brandywine?

garystpaul(4)May 4, 2008

I am growing these this year for the first time. I'm wondering what to expect of them, especially in relation to the various other Brandywines, which in terms of production haven't done all that well for me here in Minnesota. Anyone have experience or opinions to share? Much appreciated. GaryStPaul

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tom8olvr(Z5 MA)

I grew BBW several years ago and liked it very much. The texture was out of this world - smooth (inside the locules) and very soft. I haven't grown it since (until this year). I hope that it's as good as I remembered. I recall it being smaller than PBW. I had more fruit, but smaller fruit. Hope this helps.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2008 at 12:12PM
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carolyn137(z4/5 NY)

Gary, are you referring to the so called TRUE Black Brandywine sold at Baker Creek this year, as opposed to the Black Brandywine that has been know for quite a few years and originated as a chance X pollination in the growing fields of Seeds by Design in CA between Brandywine and an unknown black variety?

If so, no one has grown it yet as far as I know b'c it was just introduced. So no comparisons can even be made with the well know Black Brandywine I described above. it should bear no realtionship to any of the other varieties with brandywine as part of the name b'c they are distinct varieties, either family heirlooms, manually created, or the result of chance cross pollinations.

Aside from what I think of the history given for the TRUE BB. Sigh

Carolyn
Carolyn

    Bookmark   May 4, 2008 at 2:29PM
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garystpaul(4)

Carolyn, thanks for the response. I got these seeds from a friend; he gave me the remainder of a packet of "True Black Brandywine" that did indeed from from Baker Creek Heirloom Seed Co. (packed for 2008). So it's anyone's guess what this will look and taste like? Surely, though, it will bear *some* genetic relationship with other Brandywines, no? GaryStPaul

    Bookmark   May 4, 2008 at 2:49PM
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HoosierCheroKee(IN6)

Gary,

I grew True Black Brandywine last year ... a gift from Gary M. of Louisville, KY.

The top of the plant was broken off in shipment, and it took a while for it to recoup. When it did, it grew a well-shaped, potato-leaf vine, and made fruit in clusters of two or three dark, dusky pink ("purple") tomatoes about the same shade as the regular leaf Black Brandywine I grew from Chuck Wyatt's Web catalog seed a few years ago. The tomatoes had dark green shoulders ... almost brownish purple ... when the rest of the tomato was fully colored with it's dusky pink ripeness.

The flavor of True Black Brandywine was good ... comparable to Cherokee Purple Potato Leaf (aka: Spudakee), in my opinion, which it also resembles in color and shape ... curiously enough. It's worth growing because it's a pretty plant with nice flavored tomatoes ... something that can be said about many other varieties with equally interesting, if questionable, histories.

Baker Creek seeds for True Black Brandywine are the same as those from which Gary M. grew the plant he sent me in 2007. The tomatoes I grew were not "maroon" as one of the tomatoes reportedly in its ancestory is described.

Bill

    Bookmark   May 4, 2008 at 6:21PM
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carolyn137(z4/5 NY)

I grew True Black Brandywine last year ... a gift from Gary M. of Louisville, KY.

****

Bill, just curious but how did Gary get seeds for this last year when Jere only listed it in the 2008 catalog?

Maybe he asked for new variety seeds in return for Granny Cantrell, or similar. Just a thought.

Carolyn

    Bookmark   May 4, 2008 at 7:08PM
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HoosierCheroKee(IN6)

Carolyn,

I'm thinking Baker Creek got them from Gary. But I could be wrong. Maybe Gary got a sneak preview.

BTW, Bill M. has had TBB for some time ... several years, I think. He got them directly from WWW; so, apparently they've been around a while.

Bill

    Bookmark   May 4, 2008 at 7:18PM
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carolyn137(z4/5 NY)

Bill, rather than cause a possible ruckus here I think I'll PM or whatever you from somewhere to find out what you think of WWW's story about the TRUE BB.

It's been discussed in great detail at another message site.

Carolyn

    Bookmark   May 4, 2008 at 7:42PM
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slo_garden(9 CA Coast)

While we're on the subject, I'm trying BBWs for the first time this year. Apparently mine aren't TRUE (would that make them false?) BBWs. What experiences have folks had with those?

    Bookmark   May 4, 2008 at 8:30PM
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yummykaz

I am growing this, this year. I bought these seeds and Sarah Black from Baker Creek. So far they are awesome, and I started them indoor on Jan.21st. They are about 4 feet tall with the Sarah Black more shorter/compact. True black is sort of tallish. Thanks for all the info, I too was wondering and could not find much except on BC website. I have little tomatoes on them.

Here is a link that might be useful: In my Backyard

    Bookmark   May 4, 2008 at 10:49PM
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carolyn137(z4/5 NY)

Yummy, you might be interested to know that Sarah Black is not an heirloom.

it was bred by someone who also bred Sarah Pink and Sarah Yellow and then gave the same false history to them all. Sigh.

But it does taste good according to those who have grown it. ( smile)

Carolyn

    Bookmark   May 4, 2008 at 11:08PM
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vgary(z6KY)

âÂÂBill, just curious but how did Gary get seeds for this last year when Jere only listed it in the 2008 catalog? Maybe he asked for new variety seeds in return for Granny Cantrell, or similar. Just a thought.âÂÂ
**********
I have shared a number of Heirloom Tomato varieties with Baker Creek and Southern Exposure Seed Exchange directly and indirectly My dear friends, Merlyn and Mary Ann Niedens, have grown and are growing varieties I pass along to them for trial. They have introduced the âÂÂGranny CantrellâÂÂsâ German, Atkinson, Hazelfield Farm Red, and have others this season being grown for release this year and next..

I am recovering from a full day spent in Cincinnati at the CHOPTAG Plant Exchange. This is the energizer which gets me started for a summer of growing Heirloom Tomatoes! All these good folks just keep growing on you year after year like family and provide the cream of the crop tomato seedlings with such generosity. We had outsiders wander by and they were rewarded with tomatoes as well! The Tomato Tasting is even better! COME JOIN US!

In January of 2007 the folks at Baker Creek kindly shared a few seed of the True Black Brandywine with me; they indicated that William Woys Weaver had shared seed with them and plans were for it to be grown and listed in the 2008 catalog.
I germinated a number of the seed without difficulty and had some spare plants which I shared with a select few folks who I knew would enjoy growing them. I sent Bill a variety of seedlings last spring because he has been so generous in sharing with me. Germination was very good and my saved seed from the TBB did extremely well this season.
Before responding to this thread, I checked the few seedlings I have ready for planting. They are a good healthy/strong potato leaf plant and are ready for planting. True Black Brandywine is an indeterminate, midseason, good flavor, with several buds to a truss, medium plus size fruit, with dark deep pink to purple tomatoes. Shoulders have a bronzy/green/purple coloration similar to Cherokee Chocolate. 2007 growing season was hot and dry and production was low on most all my varieties; I am growing the TBB again this year in hopes of a bountiful season on all my tomatoes
Gary

    Bookmark   May 5, 2008 at 7:01PM
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carolyn137(z4/5 NY)

Gary, thanks so much for sharing your experience with TBB so that the folks above who asked about it will now have two descriptions to go from, yours and Bill's.

Carolyn

    Bookmark   May 5, 2008 at 10:59PM
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vgary(z6KY)

I had not seen this thread and Carolyn e-mailed me and informed me that Bill had shared information about the TBB I had shared with him last season and that he had commented on the the growing habit etc. I was only to happy to share any other helpful information to growers here.
I had the opportunity of talking this evening with Merlyn Niedens about other matters; I asked him about his production experience with TBB since he grew a large number of plants to seed for Baker Creek and he commented that it was extremely productive and a very healthy plant variety.
All good wishes for a bountiful garden of tomatoes to each of you this season!
Gary

    Bookmark   May 6, 2008 at 12:09AM
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