The First Ripe Tomato of the 2012 Growing Season

…is ‘Hahms Gelbe Topftomate.’

In a surprise upset, this pretty little dwarf plant beat out the usual top competitors, ‘Whippersnapper’ and ‘Ditmarsher.’ It’s a true winner as I started the seeds at the same time and planted them out together, too. I am amazed.

Both of the other varieties have fruit that are VERY close to ripe so we should be enjoying them any day now.

Did you buy ‘Hahms Gelbe’ seed from me this year? How are your plants doing? Are they fruiting yet?

Gayla Trail
Gayla is a writer, photographer, and former graphic designer with a background in the Fine Arts, cultural criticism, and ecology. She is the author, photographer, and designer of best-selling books on gardening, cooking, and preserving.

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30 thoughts on “The First Ripe Tomato of the 2012 Growing Season

  1. Congrats! Always exciting to get (and eat) that first tomato. My NJ grown tomatoes still have a ways to go before anything ripens but mostly because I got a late start this year. Enjoy

  2. Yum! Can’t wait for mine, they still have a long way to go, I have a few tomatoes growing but mostly flowers. The greenhouse helps a lot but even with that boost Abitibi tomatoes are behind souther ones.

  3. My first tomato of my second growing season in Toronto came last week. At the end of my 12-hr ER shift (I’m a nurse), I held the hands of two women as the older one passed away. When I went up to my rooftop patio at dusk to water, there were three Chadwick’s cherry and two grape cluster ready to go.
    Life, eh? it really is a magical journey.

  4. I am growing mine in a pot along with some basil, and it almost looks ready! It will be my first ripe tomato for 2012 as well. The plant is very stocky and looks very healthy.
    Thank you for selling those seeds online. The only yellow tomato seeds I could find in the stores were the “Yellow Pear” which is bland, grainy, and terrible when grown in my Upstate NY soil.

  5. Hi Gayla – would you by chance have any more seeds of this little yellow tomato? I’d love to buy some to put aside for next year. And I still owe you some rootings of my mom’s French tarragon – I haven’t forgotten, but don’t know how to get it to you. I was one of the two “helpers” when we cleaned up the side harden at your rooftop apt.

    • Hi Mary, I sold out of that particular variety quite a long time ago. I only had enough left to grow this year’s crop.

  6. My Hahms is still verrrry slowwwwly trucking along. It’s at about 4″ high now and has two flowers growing. Not sure what’s up since I started the seeds in April!

  7. I have a question about how to properly harvest zucchini- they grow inside the base of the plant…what is the best way to do this?

  8. congratulations! my first ripe ‘mater this year was a hahms gelbe too, on june 10. i’m also growing whippersnapper but started that one much later, and there’s nothing close to ripe yet. the only other ripe ones i’ve had are tiny tims.

  9. I have some of your Hahms Gelbes, and they’re doing beautifully. They are beginning to set fruit now, which in St. John’s NL is unprecedented – usually I see my first tomatoes around Labour Day, and have to ripen them indoors. Miracle tomatoes! (And an exceptionally warm spring… but still…)

  10. Congrats!! Is there anything more exciting than the first blush on the first tomato of the year?? I don’t have the Hahms, but my first tomato was also an orange one. I have had a few ripe ‘Golden Nugget’ tomatoes, and none of my others started by seed at the same time are even blushing yet. Soon, I hope!

  11. Hahms was my first this year too. In fact, the first tomato ripened about a week ago on our spare bedroom windowsill (we have one in a pot out back too). I left one in the 2″ pot I started the seed in to test its compactness. There is another tomato ripening on that plant.

  12. Congratulations on the first tomato! We have cherry tomatoes coming in every day. My mistake was not planting more plants! I like yellow tomatoes, because the squirrels seem to leave those alone. The squirrels will definitely bite into the red tomatoes when we attempt to grow them. Sigh! Anyway, lovely tomato there.

    • Interesting observation! I’ve never noticed but will pay closer attention as I always have tomatoes in a variety of colors.

  13. Yes. I did buy ‘Hahms Gelbe’ seeds from you and every seed germinated, including a “mystery” seed. The tomatoe plant is not a ‘Hahms Gelbe’. It is tall, a little wispy and the fruits are small – not currant size but smaller (so far) than my Sun Golds and Sweet Millions. It’s going to be a surprise! The ‘Hahms Gelbe’ plants are sooo healthy. I have them in pots, in the garden and I’ve gifted some to friends. What an amazing tomatoe!

    • That is really odd as those seeds shouldn’t have come into contact with any others. It was also the only variety that was completely segregated from all others by a great distance.

      Please keep me updated on its final color, size and form as I can identify it for you.

  14. my tomates seem to be taking forever to ripen. They are all taller than me now since I started them pretty early and all have about 15 fist sized GREEN tomatoes on them. noticed some of the leaves on on variety were turning yellow at the bottom and i pruned those off. other than that they all seem very healthy just waiting waiting waiting

  15. Congrats! Here in Rome, we already started eating our ciliegini a couple of weeks ago and very recently some san marzano, all from our community garden. I thought that we have planted more kinds of tomatoes but we were so sloppy during the spring, they got lost somewhere. Anyway this is our first year yet, and we already learned so much!

  16. Gayla, if you harvest any seeds from this little yellow wonder, I’d like to buy some from you. Thanks.

  17. I bought seeds from you and it’s doing well! It’s had a rough time with warm(ish) and dry weather at the beginning of spring, then suddenly cold and damp at the end for several weeks. I’ve pruned it a little (the leaves started to curl into ithe main trunk). It’s started fruiting, none ripe yet…but soon:

  18. I bought some Hahms Gelbe seeds from you! Due to a cross-country move, I planted them way later than I should have, but I think my little guy has caught up a bit due to the consistent bright sun and heat of the Mid-Atlantic. Lots of flowers, no fruit yet, but I’m looking forward to it! I’ve been watering with diluted milk occasionally, since my other tomato died of some kind of wilt/fungus, and so far it’s working, but man does it stink.

  19. I bought seed from you and they were doing great but I wanted to try them in pots instead of in the garden proper but didn’t get them potted up before they started making fruit! Now the plants are pretty small and don’t seem to be growing (we are having crazy heat and drought issues). Hope I manage to do a better job next year!

  20. I didn’t buy seeds from you, but I did buy them after reading the original post about these tomatoes. I’m so glad I did! They’re adorable and delicious.

    I’m definitely growing them again next year. I’ll have to try growing the other two you mentioned also. Meant to this year, but other tomatoes got in the way.

  21. I bought seeds from you and my Hahms Gelbe has loads of blossoms and some bright green fruit. Due to a move, I set my garden out later than I’d like but the plant is hardy and I’m excited to eat my first yellow tomato ever! Thanks to your books and enthusiasm, I’ve planted my FIRST GARDEN this year and it’s SO, SO exciting! Thank you Gayla!

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