It’s so pretty, with its bee-like stripes. That’s what got me hooked. Then I tasted it…
I got my first ‘Sunrise Bumblebee’ tomato plant from my friend and tomato mentor, Linda Crago, at her Tree and Twig Heirloom Vegetable Farm. Linda said, “Try it.” I took it home and planted it.
I fell in love with this amazing tomato variety when I saw the tomatoes forming on that plant in my garden. They are yellow, with pink marbling and yellow stripes.
A short while after “discovering” these beautiful tomatoes in my garden, I looked through a seed catalogue and I found a write-up about Fred Hempel from Artisan Seeds, the breeder behind ‘Sunrise Bumblebee,’ as well as its sibling bumblebee tomatoes.
Hempel is a Californian scientist-turned-tomato breeder. He has bred and continues to breed amazing tomatoes. He created ‘Blush,’ ‘Lucky Tiger,’ ‘Green Tiger,’ ‘Pink Tiger,’ and many more, including the bumblebee series. The bumblebee series includes ‘Pink Bumblebee,’ ‘Purple Bumblebee,’ and, of course, ‘Sunrise Bumblebee.’ All bumblebee tomatoes share great taste and pretty stripes.
In the Kitchen
I don’t know how you could pick these tomatoes and not eat them all on the spot. They are beautiful and so tempting. I recommend using them fresh; why cook something so beautiful and ruin its look? If you don’t eat them in the garden, throw them into a salad – my favourite is a Caprese salad with fresh basil. Yum!
The Artisan Seeds website describes the taste of ‘Sunrise Bumblebee’ as “…bright, sweet and tropical.” I agree!
Grow Your Own
‘Sunrise Bumblebee’ tomato seeds are now available through many seed sources such as Baker Creek Heirloom Vegetable Seeds, West Coast Seeds, Burpee, Johnny’s Selected Seeds, Hawthorn Farm Organic Seeds , and, of course, Artisan Seeds, where it was bred.
This fantastic tomato variety is a must in the gardens of all tomato lovers.
Emma Biggs is a gardener and garden communicator who has raised over 130 tomato varieties. Her Toronto garden is the source of many of her stories and the produce that she sells in her neighbourhood. She hosts kids gardening videos and her latest book, Gardening with Emma, helps kids and adults find the fun in growing.