Page 3, 9th November 1945

9th November 1945
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Page 3, 9th November 1945 — Earth and Ourselvo.
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Earth and Ourselvo.

Tomatoes

I HAVE just received a 'letter from a friend in Somerset tell tiaogmatomee hat a f s se hadthi clop of ° ".A yellow one which I grew from seed," she says, " weighed twelve ounces, and was so beautiful and massive that I kept it us an ornament and took it calling." She is more fortunate in this respect than we have been, for although we seem to have every kind of inducement to the tomato .(inchiding a sunny south wall) we have never really succeeded in getting u satisfactory crop out-ofdoors, though one year our rubbish heap presented us—quite unexpectedly—with Several fine plants which, left entirely, to .theinselves, sprawled at will and put forth quite a lot of fruit which we gathered while it was green and made into chutney, Perhaps it is unfair, in south-east England, to expect the tomato to come to its full, glossy. glowing perfection, native as it is of sunwarmed Peruvian soil.

I remember once walking along the road that skirts the little port of Santa Cruz de Tenerife when a Spanish workman suddenly ran out of a shed and put a large ripe tomato into my hand. Having as they say in that country, no Spanish, I was unable to discover whether this was a gift or an advertiiement, but as . the donor simply smiled, bowed, waved his hands and returned to the shed, I smiled and bowed in return and ate the tomato, which was delicious, as is all fruit ripened under the generous Southern slut.

IT 13 C11,10115 people Eng ' land should have had such desvast for this beautiful and refreshing fruit when it was first hapbried. but the reason may have been its known kinship with the mandrake •and deadly nightshade. In Southern Europe they seem to have given the tomato the benefit of the doubt and made use of it very'rnuch earlier than we did in this country, and in PrOugal it wa.s used in cookery some three hundred years ago.

The yellow tomato is. of course, much sweeter than the red, and for this reason is preferred by many people (though, personally, I have never been able to awe-) elate thorn, and it is' popularly supposed that the Golden Apples of the Hesperides were in reality yellow tomatoes, the pommes d'amour of the French and a close relative of the pommes de thrre

Julian

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