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Tomatomania 2011: It's time to start planning a homegrown harvest

Tomato2Few foods can beat a homegrown, just-picked tomato. And as the season grows near, I start to yearn for the flavors of many varieties, from sweet little snacking Sungolds to big Brandywines. Those plants and many more can be found at Tomatomania, the annual heirloom tomato sales, which announced its 2011 dates.

The first sale is set for March 19 and 20 in Encinitas, Calif. Other dates around the region and on the East Coast are listed on the website. Almost 300 varieties will be available March 25 to 27 at Tapia Brothers Farm Stand in Encino. At some sites, classes also will be held.

-- Mary MacVean

Photo: Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times

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Damned. Wish I could grow tomatoes on my balcony. It's east facing and only gets about 4 hours of direct sunlight a day. I gave it a go, but they didn't do very well.

Any recommendations for varieties that might survive in those conditions?


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