Monday, 24 March 2014

Dancing With Smurfs

How can you not love that name! This is a beautiful cherry variety bred by Tom Wagner. The seeds I received in 2011 were F3, meaning they were still segregating for traits and selections needed to be made over the coming years for the next generations of seed to be saved. I've been selecting for my favourites each time, based on taste, looks and earliness. Dancing With Smurfs is not an overly sweet type of cherry as some are, but what it does have is a good rich tomato taste, great for snacking on. I've found this variety easy to grow in a greenhouse and here it will crop outside in a sheltered spot.

Dancing With Smurfs F4

The blue - anthocyanin colour is seen most intensely on fruits that have been in direct sunlight. This can be seen on stems and fruits from very early on and fruits continue to darken as they grow. Leaves do tend to curl a bit which helps lets more sunlight in. The shaded under side of the tomato retains it's original colour and ripens to red, a great way to check they are ripe.





The picture below shows the reduction in intensity of the blue-black colour (Anthocyanin) when tomatoes are grown in a slightly shady spot, taste and production remained good. I think Dancing With Smurfs and another similar cherry of Tom's, Helsing Junction Blues are my favourite 'antho' cherries that I've grown so far. I'll continue making my selections from the plants I grow and save seeds to be sown next year. 

Dancing With Smurfs F6




2 comments:

  1. My experience with these is that they seemed to produce the same thing right out of the box [at the F-3 stage]. Later fruits had better flavor that first year. I have mine at F-7 at harvest in 2015. I do have about 10-15 seeds left from the 2010 F-3 batch; which I will grow all at once one of these days. You are correct that these are the best-tasting of the anthocyanin lines, but I do have a P-20 x Momotaro F-4 that will blow away all other antho' lines for flavor.

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    1. Hi Tee K, glad you are a fan of DWS too. Similar story here, I've never had any real notable differences in types either, but perhaps I've not been growing enough. I've just saved seed from the most prolific and best tasting ones each year, they have been a delight. Definitely agree the later season ones taste the best, Helsing Junction Blues are very similar too, have you tried these? P-20 x Momotaro sounds an interesting cross, Momotaro gets rave reviews, good luck with it, I'll keep an eye out for it.

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