An Italian classic for over a hundred years, the Principe Borghese produces a mighty crop for thick, fragrant sauce. Do like the Italians do, harvest the plant and hang them upside down on the side of your garden shed to dry naturally from the heat of the sun. Or slice and slow dry in a low oven, layer with basil and olive oil for a year round treat. Compact determinant plants are stocky and sturdy, bearing clusters of egg-sized tomatoes with thick walls and minimal seeds.
A native of Tuscany, Principe Borghese tomatoes are an Italian heirloom variety used primarily for sun-drying because of their extraordinary color and flavor when dehydrated. The vine-like plants can be left to sprawl on the ground, giving you higher yields of smaller tomatoes and eliminating the need to prune. However, the preferred growing method is to support the vines with staking, enabling them to climb upward and produce larger fruits. The vines will typically grow to about 3 feet, but have been known to reach as high as 6, so be sure your support structure is of ample size and sturdiness to support the weight of the fruit. Principe Borghese tomatoes grow in clusters of 6-8 fruits, each tomato maturing to be perfectly plump and plumb-like in shape with a diameter of 1-2 inches. They're very meaty but relatively dry and with very few seeds, making them perfect for dehydrating and making paste and sauces. The dried fruits store very well too, lasting all throughout the winter months. Like all tomatoes, Principe Borghese tomatoes are filled with many healthy nutrients, most notably lycopene. Tomatoes have the highest concentration of this beneficial antioxidant, which has been found to aid in the prevention and treatment of cancer, promote cardiovascular health, and help maintain healthy eyes.