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A Tomato Expert's 13 Tastiest Toms

From heirlooms to hybrids, there are thousands of tomato varieties to grow. Author Craig LeHoullier recommends the best "toms" for your garden.

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Photo: Photography by (c) Shoe Heel Factory, illustrations by (c) Mary Kate McDevitt used with permission from Storey Publishing.

Terrific Tomatoes

Tomato expert Craig LeHoullier is the author of Epic Tomatoes: How to Select & Grow the Best Varieties of All Time (Storey Publishing). He has trialed more than 1,200 varieties, and 'Green Giant', shown here, is one of his favorites. "The texture, similar to 'Lillian’s Yellow Heirloom' and 'Brandywine', presents plenty of succulent flesh surrounding the many small seed cavities. The intensity of flavor nearly overwhelms, and it is most similar to 'Sun Gold' in approaching perfection," he says.

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Photo: Photo by Kip Dawkins Photography / Epic Tomatoes / Courtesy Storey Publishing

Tomato 'Nepal'

LeHoullier says 'Nepal' was the variety that converted him from hybrid to heirloom tomatoes. "It has an aggressive, full flavor that will delight those who love intense tomatoes," he says, likening it to one of those delicious fruits bought at a local farm stand or picked from a relative's garden.

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Photo: Photo by Mars Vilaubi / Epic Tomatoes / Courtesy Storey Publishing

Tomato 'Lucky Cross'

'Lucky Cross' is a "flavor king" among the large, yellow-red bicolors, says LeHoullier. It's an offspring of 'Brandywine' with the "same sort of big tomato flavor and perfect balance, rendering it unique among varieties in this color class, which typically have a very sweet flavor personality that borders on overly mild," says LeHoullier.

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Photo: Photo by Mars Vilaubi / Epic Tomatoes / Storey Publishing

Tomato 'Rosella Purple'

"The flavor of 'Rosella Purple' is truly outstanding," says LeHoullier. "The ability to get such flavor on a tomato plant easily grown in a 5-gallon pot on a porch or deck is a true advance in the selection of tomatoes possible for space-constrained gardens."

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