Tomato, Sasha’s Altai (Organic)
Solanum lycopersicum. 75 days. Semi-det.
Another great main season, 4-6 oz, red tomato from Siberia that’s perfect for fresh eating. We are starting to specialize in Russian and Siberian tomatoes and for good reason—they’re awesome. Sasha’s Altai comes with a very special seed-explorerromantic story. It was originally brought to the US from Irkutsk by seedsman Bill McDorman as part of one of the first and most important introductions of tomato diversity from the former Soviet Union. He received it from a very generous gardener named Sasha, who said it was the best tomato in Siberia. Sasha walked 35 kilometers (21.75 miles) each way to his home in the mountains and back just to give the seed to Bill. Famous now for its flavor, it was chosen by Organic Garden Magazine as one of the 10 best early tomatoes in the world.
Sow indoors in flats with good potting soil as early as February, but no later than April. Keep warm and well-watered. Up pot seedlings into 4” pots once they have two true leaves. Transplant into the garden once danger of frost has passed.
Collect seeds from ripe fruit by squeezing into a jar and add 25% more water. Wait a few days for mold to form. When seeds sink and gel-sac is gone, stir, add water, then decant and rinse to clean. Dry thoroughly. Tomatoes are mostly self-pollinating; isolation is not usually needed for seeds to be true to type.