Harzfeuer tomato: growing, plant care & more


I studied horticultural sciences at university and in my free time you can find me in my own patch of land, growing anything with roots. I am particularly passionate about self-sufficiency and seasonal food.

Favourite fruit: quince, cornelian cherry and blueberries
Favourite vegetables: peas, tomatoes and garlic

The well-known ‘Harzfeuer’ tomato variety is robust and easy to grow. Here is what you should consider when planting and caring for the ‘Harzfeuer’ tomato.

ripe harzfeuer tomato
The ‘Harzfeuer’ variety is a classic red salad tomato [Photo: KarepaStock/ Shutterstock.com]

The ‘Harzfeuer F1’ has long been a classic among the wide variety of red salad tomatoes. Its high yield and hardiness make the ‘Harzfeuer’ a particularly low-maintenance tomato. Below is our in-depth guide to this beloved tomato.

‘Harzfeuer’ tomato: profile

Other names‘Harzfeuer F1’
FruitSalad tomato; deep red
TasteJuicy, sweet, fruity
Ripening timeMid-season
GrowthIndeterminate, up to 2m in height
LocationGreenhouse, outdoors, in containers

‘Harzfeuer’ tomato origin and history

The ‘Harzfeuer F1’ is a hybrid variety first cultivated in the former GDR. It is believed to have been created by crossing the ‘Moneymaker‘ with ‘Frühe Liebe’ tomato. This variety first appeared on the market in 1959 under the name ‘Prima Vera’. But this was already taken! The breeders of another variety with this very same name objected, so Dr. Fabig renamed his new tomato variety ‘Harzfeuer F1’ in 1961. Since then, this red salad tomato has only grown in popularity, far beyond its home in the small town of Quedlinburg.

‘Harzfeuer’ tomato taste and other characteristics

‘Harzfeuer’ tomato plants have a vigorous, indeterminate growth and reach up to two meters tall. From the end of July onward, up to ten ‘Harzfeuer’ fruits ripen on a single vine. ‘Harzfeuer F1’ tomatoes are round to slightly flattened in shape and bright red when ripe. The tomatoes reach a weight of about 90 grams. Ripe ‘Harzfeuer’ tomatoes have a deliciously sweet and fruity taste. While their skin is quite thin and flesh juicy, but firm to cut. ‘Harzfeuer F1’ is a hybrid variety, which is indicated by the suffix “F1”. This means it is not an heirloom variety and cannot be grown again from saved seeds. As a hybrid, there is a high chance that the original characteristics of ‘Harzfeuer F1’ will not be reproduced in the seedlings from saved seeds. So, to cultivate ‘Harzfeuer’ tomatoes successfully, it is necessary to buy new seeds every season.

cluster of harzfeuer tomatoes
‘Harzfeuer’ tomatoes begin ripening around mid-July [Photo: eugenegurkov/ Shutterstock.com]

Planting and caring for ‘Harzfeuer’ tomatoes

The ‘Harzfeuer’ is a very robust and versatile tomato plant. It is ideal for growing both in the greenhouse and outdoors, but also as a balcony tomato. Plant your young ‘Harzfeuer’ plants in greenhouses around the beginning of May, but wait until mid-May onwards, for planting outdoors or in a container. As a salad tomato variety, ‘Harzfeuer F1’ grows best with two or three shoots. Leave one or two side shoots low down on the main shoot, and ensure that all are well supported and tied up if necessary. Prick out all other side shoots regularly and consistently.

Mineral fertilisers tend to over-fertilise and provide too much nitrogen for ‘Harzfeuer’ tomato plants. This causes the tomatoes to develop a condition known as green collar, meaning the fruits will not turn red around the stem base, but instead, remain a yellowish-green. Organic fertilisers, on the other hand, release their nutrients gradually, so there is no danger of green collar. At the beginning of June, as soon as fruiting begins, we recommend applying a slow-release fertiliser, such as our Plantura Tomato Food.

Plantura Liquid Tomato Food
Plantura Liquid Tomato Food

Liquid fertiliser with an NK ratio of 4-5, for tomatoes & other vegetables, promotes healthy plant growth, child & pet friendly

Growing ‘Harzfeuer’ tomatoes in containers

To grow ‘Harzfeuer F1’ in a pot, fill the planting container with a specially adapted tomato soil, like our Plantura Organic Tomato & Vegetable Compost. Once planted, support the tomato plant with a cane or stake, and place it next to a warm house wall, sheltered from the rain.

Harvesting and using ‘Harzfeuer’ tomatoes

The ‘Harzfeuer F1’ is a firm salad tomato which is perfect for snacks or chopped up in salads. ‘Harzfeuer’ tomatoes are also delicious stuffed and baked in the oven.

Did you know that there are some tomato varieties that stay green even when ripe? Discover all the best green tomato varieties and learn how to tell when they are ready to pick.

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