The Cesarino tomato
An Umbrian rarity that comes from the past…
An ancient variety of tomato which has been grown by an Umbrian family in a small Umbrian village. Nowadays the product is known thanks to an Association that has discovered it.
After the 60ies and the 70ies, so after the period of the agricultural crisis, some people began to work as seed savers and they cropted and preserved some seed species. The tomato is one of the most cropted and preserved plant of that period because it is one of the most used ingredients in Italian dishes (for example think to the Mediterranean diet). The most important Umbrian tomato specie that has been cropted and preserved has been the “Cesarino” or “Cesare’s” one. This specie has been cropted in a small piece of land in Madonna del Piano, near Monte Castello di Vibio (province of Perugia). This tomato is called “Cesarino” or “Cesare’s” because the man who has cropted it has been Cesare, an Umbrian farmer. He said that this specie has been cropted for more that 90 years by him and his family.
Some years ago, Matteo Ciucci, a young farmer, began the cultivation of this seed. He first spoke to Cesare and than began the cultivation. This young man began a partnership with the Perugian University of Agriculture to analyse these seeds. Thanks to this partnership he discovered this unique Umbrian variety of tomato that nowadays is very used.
After that, an association (“Associazione Pomodoro De Cesare”) has been created to promote this plant through workshops and tastings. In addition, from the 2019, this variety is subscribed in the Regional Register of local products.
Characteristics and crop
The Cesarino tomato is full of carotenoid. It is 2.95 cm in lenght and 3.14 cm in width.
This tomato resists to the drought and to the fungus.
It is seed in March and the harvest is done by hand or in plateau. If it is trasplanted, it has to be irrigated with drop irrigation to let it overcome the trasplant stress.
The plant bear fruit until September/October.
This tomato is very juicy so it is particularly suitable to be preserved for the traditional tomato passata or it is perfect to be eaten fresh. Nowadays people are testing the preparation of this tomato also in jams or as a dried vegetable.
Family: Solanaceae Juss.
Specie: S. lycopersicum L.
Name of its specie (as it is known): Pomodoro Cesarino
Name significance: the name cames from a farmer (Cesare) who has grown this specie for a long time.
Synonymus: Pomodoro de Cesare (Cesare’s tomato).
Conservation place: Banca del germoplasma regionale di semi di specie erbacee, S. Andrea D’Agliano (Perugia).
© Riproduzione riservata