Bull’s Heart or also called Ox Heart, Beef Heart or Coeur de Boeuf is our favorite heirloom tomato variety. We grow many heirloom tomatoes but this one stands out and deserves a separate post.
Bulls’s Heart was a tomato I grew up with. It must have been my father’s favorite because I remember him enjoying it. I was thrilled to find seeds here in Canada and even more to see how well it does here. Here a short video to show you the plants and fruit.
Where to get seeds
Even though Bull’s Heart is a very old and popular variety, you might not find seeds for it in common big catalogs or stores. Look for heirloom or local tomato growers.
We get our seeds from caseysheirloomtomatoes.ca, and even though we have always bought our seeds from him, our plants are nothing like the description of the tomato. Thankfully, I knew what I was looking for, otherwise, I might have gone past that variety.
How to grow Bull’s heart
Bull’s Heart is an indeterminate tomato variety. We always grow it in the greenhouse and trim the plant to one stem. The plants grow very tall, and most years we just cut the growing point since they would probably go endless.
Other than that, we grow Bull’s Heart just the same as any tomato. See our list of blog posts on growing tomatoes:
How to Start Tomatoes from Seeds
When to Start Tomatoes Indoors
Transplanting Tomato Plants into the Ground
How to Support Tomatoes
To Prune or Not to Prune Tomato Plants
Bull’s Heart tomato fruit
Bull’s Heart tends to be the biggest and earliest fruit to ripen in our garden. The earliness is a big plus for a short growing season.
Did I mention that the tomatoes are big? Our biggest so far was over 3.5lb (1.59 kg). And it was all good and yummy. I made one of our favorite salsa out of it.
One would think that a plant that produces this size tomatoes would have only a few fruits on it. Not so with Bull’s Heart. The plants are very productive producing 10 plus tomatoes during our short growing season. Many of the tomatoes being around one pound.
Using Bull’s Heart tomatoes
One of the reasons we like Bull’s Heart so much is because it’s a great all-around tomato. It is meaty and yummy. I would best describe it as the perfect sandwich tomato. Great for fresh eating, on a sandwich, in a salad as well as great for cooking and canning. There aren’t many seeds in the tomato.
A ripe Bull’s Heart tomato peels easily without the need to be blanched first. I think that alone is a big benefit. However, that also means that the skin is a bit on the thicker side.
We use Bull’s Heart tomatoes for about anything we use tomatoes for. They also freeze well, which is one of the easiest ways to preserve tomatoes.
Grow your own
If you have been struggling with growing tomatoes and also harvesting ripe and yummy tomatoes through the summer, Bull’s Heart might be a variety to try. Because of the size it sure does better in the ground and in a greenhouse. But even if you do not have that, grow one in a bigger container on a south-facing wall.
If you are already growing Bull’s Heart tomatoes, let us know how you like them.