OK, so the translation of “Ananas Noire,” French for “black pineapple,” doesn’t inspire confidence that it could become one of your favorite tomato varieties.
But get past the name, and you’ll discover the Ananas Noire as an exceptional “beefsteak” tomato — a term describing large, juicy varieties — with a blend of colors that will make it a welcome addition to your garden and your dinner plate.
Read on to discover more about the Ananas Noire tomato, from how to get it into your diet to how to grow it in your backyard.
Characteristics of the Ananas Noire Tomato
The Ananas Noire tomato, known for its purplish red skin and its multicolored flesh featuring shades of red, green, pink, and yellow, was not a specifically bred hybrid tomato, but the result of a chance crossing in Belgium of a pineapple tomato and black tomato.
Since the happenstance creation of this tomato, the hybrid has been perfected and was released to the market nearly two decades ago. If you’re planning to grow the Ananas Noire tomato at home, you should know that it is a late producer, and tomatoes may not ripen for nearly three months.
Enjoying the Ananas Noire Tomato
In addition to the interesting color palette, the Ananas Noire tomato will add to your home table, its amazing flavor and texture also will set it apart as a tomato that you’ll want to include in many meals.
The Ananas Noire tomato offers a trio of taste notes, from sweet to tangy to acidic, and its flesh is tender and juicy. As a result, it will make a flavorful addition to any salad. And, its unique flavor makes it a natural choice for an interesting take on tomato sauce.
Also, if you have a youngster who is resistant to eating vegetables, the Ananas Noire, with its sweet taste and swirling colors, might be a good way to get them interested in a new and different taste.
Health Benefits of the Ananas Noire Tomato
As a large beefsteak variety, the Ananas Noire tomato is a great way to take full advantage of the health benefits offered generally by tomatoes. Among those benefits is potassium, along with Vitamins A, C, and E. Potassium, in particular, is helpful in lowering blood pressure.
Additionally, beefsteak tomatoes like the Ananas Noire contain alpha-tomatine, a cancer-fighting compound. And, they also contain beta-carotene, which can help improve eyesight and reduce the risk of cataracts.
Growing the Ananas Noire Tomato
For the best results in growing your own Ananas Noire tomatoes, you should start them indoors at least six weeks before the anticipated date of the last frost in your area. The Ananas Noire is an indeterminate tomato variety, meaning that it will continue to grow until the first frost, and can reach up to six feet in height.
After you’ve sown your seeds indoors in trays, you’ll need to transfer them to three- to four-inch pots when the first leaves appear. When you transplant them outdoors, mix some compost and some bone meal into the soil. Place your tomato plants 24 to 36 inches apart.
As your plants grow, you’ll need to support them, either with a trellis or tomato cages or tying them loosely to stakes placed in the ground. Your Ananas Noire tomatoes should be ready for harvest in 12 weeks.
Pests and Diseases
Tomatoes, including the Ananas Noire, are subject to a number of pests and diseases. So if you notice anything wrong with your tomato plants, your first step should be a call to your county’s agricultural extension office to learn what pests and diseases are most common in your area.
And while garden centers abound with fungicides and other sprays and powers for attacking a range of tomato diseases, there are some home remedies that you might first want to try.
For instance, sometimes just spraying water on your tomato plants might be enough to get pests off of them or to control the spread of any diseases. Similarly, placing sheets of aluminum foil around your growing tomato plants may keep pests like aphids away from them.
Harvesting Your Ananas Noire Tomatoes
As with all varieties, there are two ways to harvest your Ananas Noir tomatoes. You can wait for them to fully ripen on the vine, or you can pick them while they are still green and let them ripen indoors.
When you take your tomatoes off the vine, grasp each one firmly, holding the stem with your other hand. Try to break the tomato-free just above the calyx, the leaves where the tomato connects with the stalk. Alternatively, you can use gardening scissors or a small pruner to cut the stalk.
When to Harvest Green Ananas Noire Tomatoes
It is generally better to let your Ananas Noire tomatoes ripen on the vine. But if temperatures in your area are climbing consistently into the upper 80s or dipping into the 60s as your tomatoes are getting large enough to pick, they will no longer ripen on the vine and should be brought indoors.
Storing Green Tomatoes for Ripening
Once inside, it is temperature and humidity, not sunlight through a windowsill, that will ripen your tomatoes. You can still place your tomatoes on a windowsill to ripen, but a better strategy is to place them in a paper bag to create a greenhouse effect to speed ripening.
Where to Buy Ananas Noire Tomatoes
Seeds for your crop of Ananas Noire tomatoes are available online through Amazon. If you’d like to try an Ananas Noire before growing some yourself, try your local farmers’ market. And of course, this tomato variety will be easy to spot if it turns up in the produce aisle of your local grocery store.
Wrapping up the Ananas Noire Tomato
We hope this post has provided you with a wealth of information on the Ananas Noire tomato and has inspired you to try growing it on your own. For more on growing and enjoying all kinds of tomatoes, check out Minneopa Orchards.