Tom the Tomato Man
But the tomatoes! What to do? In autumn my friend Karlin and I visited a local gardener to buy some sauce tomatoes for making passata. His name is Tom. He is over ninety years old, and every year he grows dozens of tomato plants in his suburban back yard, and sells hundreds of kilos of tomatoes in the summer and autumn. What I didn't know is that in Spring he also grows hundreds of tomato plants from saved seed and sells them to local gardeners. I discovered this from the sign in his front yard when I walked past with the dog this week.
Well, wasn't this a serendipitous discovery? And while walking the tomato-eradicating dog too. Ironic. So I bought a dozen tomato seedlings. And seriously, if you live locally, you should too. I have never seen such healthy plants. All individually potted up, half a dozen different varieties, just bursting with health. Usually Tom takes them to Evandale Market over three weekends in the Spring, and sells them all there, but recently he tripped over the sill of his green-house, and has torn a ligament in his arm, so can't drive... and he needs to sell fifteen hundred tomato seedlings. Do pop over - 35 Amy Rd, Newstead. His is the house closest to the road - if you head up the driveway you will no doubt find Tom pottering about in the backyard. If not, bang on the door. He asked me to tell my friends.. so, friends, go buy a tomato plant from Tom.