Since we moved to our farm in Reedsville, West Virginia, in Spring 2019, we have been exploring heirloom seed varieties of this state and the rest of the Appalachian region. We found out about Cindy’s West Virginia when we were making a list of the tomatoes that originated here.
Seeds for this variety were sent to TomatoFest’s Gary Ibsen by Dean Rhine from Fish and Game Department of WV at the time. Rhine received the seeds from his colleague, Cindy, who originally got the seeds from her father, Charlie (Wirt County, WV). Charlie grew the seeds for many years and got the seeds from his neighbor who also grew this tomato joyfully in their garden for many years.
We feel very fortunate to have met Cindy’s West Virginia as this is absolutely one of the best flavored tomatoes we have ever grown. Sorry, folks! Flavor was so complex that we sacrificed many fruits for fresh eating rather than keeping them for seeding for our catalog. Meaty fruits are pink and have very uniform beefsteak shape with very few seeds. Cindy’s West Virginia has a lower yield than Ruby Red, our other favorite pink tomato, but offers a more complex flavor. Large plants have potato leaves and grow many fruits until frost. We definitely recommend this variety for small CSA farmers who want to offer their customers a tomato with amazing flavor!
Our current seed stock was grown by our friends and amazing farmers of Mockingbird Hill Farm, Morgantown, WV!