We are amateur vegetable growers with allotments, greenhouses and polytunnels. For many years we have been growing tomatoes and peppers for our own use (as well as the normal allotment vegetables, cabbages, leeks, parsnips, etc.). Several years ago, for Christmas , we were bought several different varieties of tomatoes and peppers to try. In the first year we grew 15 different varieties and the number has increased steadily since then until in 2010 we were growing 35 or so different varieties. The problem that we faced was what to do with all the plants that we grew, as we didn’t have enough space to grow-on all the plants that we had germinated.
What we realised was that there were probably other people like us out there who would like to try growing different tomatoes and peppers but who didn’t want to go through all the fuss of selecting varieties, growing them on, etc.. So during late 2010 we found a supply of “commercial grade” plug-plant packaging, selected our varieties to grow and worked out how we could distribute them through ebay.
Over the last few years we have supplied hundreds of tomato plants from our collections. Feedback has been good, the packaging we use protects the plants and they arrive in good condition and people have come back in subsequent years (always a good sign we think).
In 2013 we extended our choice, growing 78 different varieties of tomato and 14 of peppers. This is probably as many different plants as we can manage within the space we have and our plans for future years are to grow about the same number of plants (perhaps a few more peppers) but to continue trying new varieties by selecting the best varieties for our UK growing season each year.
We are not professional growers (for example the plants can only be bought via ebay). For our own use we only require two or three plants of each variety so we grow more plants than we need for our own use, but we are not growing thousands of plants of each of the varieties we have selected. Our hope is that other keen growers will be stimulated to try different varieties of tomatoes and peppers so that everybody can move on from the traditional varieties and experience the wide range of flavours, colours and sizes possible.We sell our excess to help to pay for new seed for the following year and not to make a profit. We buy seeds from around the world and, wherever possible, source fresh seed every year, hoping that the companies we use keep their strains true to the varieties we expect. If you're interested in reading more go to our listing page where you will find an index picture of all the tomatoes we are describing and if you click on the picture, it will take you to a more detailled description.
We also have a more general purpose blog here.