Tomatoes are one of those vegetables where a garden will beat a grocery store any day. Fresh tomatoes are flavorful and nutrient-dense, and once you escape the need to ship them cross country as the commercial growers do there are hundreds of varieties to choose from. There are three basic categories of tomatoes — cherry, sauce, and slicers. Though any of these could find their way into a salad, the small round cherry tomatoes are the best place to start since they’re easier to grow than slicers and are often less susceptible to disease. Once the plant starts to fruit you will be able to harvest fresh tomatoes throughout the season.
Tomatoes need to be planted from starts, the small plants you see at racks in garden stores. You can buy seed and start your own or just buy the starts from a garden center or farmers market.
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