As the story goes, it was developed by a radiator repairman, named M.C. “Radiator Charlie” Byles, when he successfully crossed four of the largest tomatoes he could find – German Johnson, Beefsteak, an Italian variety, and an old English variety. Radiator Charlie began selling his new tomato seedlings in the 1940’s for one dollar a piece to customers that came from as far away as 200 miles to buy his famous tomato plants that grew huge, tasty tomatoes. With all the sales from his tomato plants, he was able to pay off his $6,000 mortgage on his home in six years, and so he named the tomato the Mortgage Lifter.
The Mortgage Lifter is an indeterminate tomato plant that bears slightly pinkish-red fruits and can grow from 2 to 4 pounds. They feature a meaty, mild flavor that has few seeds, and is ideal for slicing.Mortgage Lifter tomatoes can be started indoors six to eight weeks before the last frost and should be planted 36 to 48 inches apart in the garden to give them plenty of room to grow.
If you have never tried a Mortgage Lifter tomato, then I highly recommend it! Truly one of the best tasting and largest heirloom tomatoes you can find.
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