Tomato ‘Mortgage Lifter’
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Botanical name: Lycopersicon esculentum
Heritage: USA, 1940's
‘Mortgage Lifter’ is an all time favourite heritage tomato producing large pinkish-red beefsteak fruit.
These hearty tomatoes are slightly flattened and can comfortably grow to 500gm and larger with good growing conditions. An excellent all-round tomato that is vigorous and productive.
It offers rich flavour and is tasty without being too acidic. It's suitable for enjoying in salads, sandwiches and in cooking.
Originally developed by an American gardener known as Radiator Charlie who cross-pollinated by hand the four biggest, tastiest tomato varieties he knew over several years. He then sold his famous tomato seedlings for $1 each (the equivalent of almost $20 in today's dollars), which were so popular he was able to pay off his $6,000 mortgage in just a few years.
Spring - Early Summer
Tomatoes are best sown in spring through early summer. Sow seeds in trays of seed raising mix and germinate at temperatures of approx. 20°c – 30°c.
20°c - 30°c
7 - 14 days
Transplant with care once seedlings have several true leaves and are 10+cm tall, to a sunny and well-drained position approx. 0.75m apart.
80 - 115 days
Being an indeterminate variety, Mortgage Lifter is tall growing and can reach 2.0m in height; the plants will require staking for support as they grow.
To grow the biggest tomatoes possible you will want to keep your tomato plants trained to a single stem. If laterals are allowed to grow into second and third stems, you are likely to produce more tomatoes but of a slightly smaller size.
Plants require regular watering for best results. Try to avoid splashing water on the leaves. Mulching well will help your garden to conserve water and encourage it to crop heavily.
Picking encourages further fruit set. It is most productive in warm and dry conditions, but can tolerate most frost-free climates. Please note that it is tender to frosts.
Be aware that tomatoes can be a favourite of birds who enjoy their water content during hot summer days. Protect your tomato crop with bird netting or similar if you find yourself losing fruit.
APPROX SEEDS PER PACKET:
|HOME GARDEN ($3.00)||50 seeds|
|BULK ($15.00)||2.5 grams|
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This is the formal scientific name for each plant, firstly identifying the genus and then the species to which it belongs.
The purpose of these Latin names is to have a single name that is accepted and used worldwide for a particular plant or plant group, and to help distinguish each plant uniquely from other plants.
This refers to the typical lifecycle of each plant.
Annual: Plants that complete their life cycle within 1 year (from germination to growing and producing seeds, then dying).
Biennial: Plants that complete their life cycle in 2 years (germinates and grows in the first year, then produces seeds and dies in the second year).
Perennial: Plants that have a life cycle of more than 2 years.
It is wise to consider the lifecycle of each plant before choosing its final growing position. For example, you may prefer to plant perennials away from annuals, so your perennials are not disturbed when your annuals are harvested at the end of their relatively short lifecycle.
This refers to the geographic region and approximate date of origin, as it is best known for each variety.
Please note that varieties listed as “pre 1900’s” are very old varieties that have often been grown for hundreds of years, and as such their specific dates of origin are hard to list accurately.
This refers to when it is suggested the seeds are best sown, to encourage strong and vigorous growth in their ideal seasonal conditions.
Please note that while some varieties may be able to be sown outside the range suggested, they will generally perform best when sown in the approximate seasonal ranges provided.
This refers to the suggested method for sowing each variety. Using the appropriate sowing method will help to ensure you achieve best results.
Direct Sow: These are seeds that perform well when sown directly into your garden. These seeds normally produce fast growing and strong seedlings. Please note that young seedlings may still need some protection from harsh weather and pests.
Transplant: These are seeds that perform well when started in trays or containers and then transplanted to their final position once they’re a bit stronger. These seeds often produce slower growing and weaker seedlings that need some care and protection from weather and pests. Seedlings can typically be transplanted to their final position once they are large enough to handle (for example 5+cm tall with several true leaves).
Please note that for varieties where we list both methods you have the choice.
Soil Temp To Germinate:
This refers to the approximate soil temperature range for optimum germination of the seeds.
Please note that while some germination may occur outside these ranges, the seeds will typically germinate strongest when sown in the optimum soil temperature range provided.
Approx. Time To Germinate:
This refers to the approximate amount of time it takes for the seeds to germinate.
Please note that while some variation may occur, with ideal conditions this represents an average amount of time before germination. This relies in part on the seeds being sown in soil at an ideal temperature for germination, per the heading above.
Spacing For Seedlings:
This is the recommended spacing between plants in their final growing position.
Please note that spacing plants closer together than suggested will likely result in underperforming plants, due to crowding and over-competition for root space and available nutrients.
Approx. Time To Harvest:
This is the number of days until the plant typically reaches the purpose for which it is normally grown. For example, this is the time it takes for the plant to fruit or flower, or until the leaves are ready to be picked, etc.
Please note that while this refers to the beginning of harvesting time, the plants could keep growing for an extended period yet, particularly if kept well looked after.
Hardiness To Frosts:
This refers to how tolerant the plant is of frost and cold weather.
Tender: Plants that will be injured or killed by frost and cold weather. These plants will probably not survive winter.
Half-Hardy: Plants that will not tolerate severe frosts, but should otherwise survive winter.
Hardy: Plants that have the ability to survive frost and cold weather. These plants should survive winter.