Opinions on these tomato varieties!

Skybird - z5, Denver, ColoradoFebruary 26, 2011

Hi all,

I need to make a decision real quick on which tomatoes I'm gonna grow this year, and, as I have been for several years now, I'm STILL trying to find must-have yellow/gold and orange tomatoes! When I was looking thru the Seed Savers catalog when I first got it, I found these five varieties as possibilities. I grew Kellogg's Breakfast last year, but I had a really BAD tomato year last year so it wasn't a fair trial, and on the previous recommendations of Jali and some other folks around here, I'm pretty sure I'm gonna try that one again.

As of right now I'm leaning toward the first three on the list! Dr. Wyche's fascinates me! I had found it somewhere before I found it in SS, and I'll probably grow that for sure unless somebody has something really awful to say about it here!

The Moonglow I had never heard of before, but it sounds good!

The Gold Medal and the Powers Heirloom are just a couple more possibilities I found in the SS catalog that are in the running.

I'm interested in if any of you have grown any of these before--and what did you think about them? Tell me the good, the bad, and the ugly!

I don't care how acid they are, or exactly what the flavor is---as long as there's a LOT of it! I like juicy! Don't like the mushy kind of things you often get with a Sauce" tomato. I'll be eating them fresh (unless I get lucky enough this year to have a few to cook with!) I'm looking for that WOW! Now that's a TOMATO!!! flavor.

If you're familiar with any of them and remember anything about them, am interested in how big they "really" were, were they early, mid, or late, any particular diseases or problems, do you agree with any or all of the descriptions I've found??? Any personal experience info would be wonderful!

Besides the five above I've also tried Sunray and Golden Jubilee, and wasn't at all impressed with them. And last year I tried Yellow Brandywine---and it didn't even start BLOOMING till LATE summer! I know it was a weird summer, but I'd rather try something different this year---and it also was an extremely poor keeper! It did finally start producing fruit in early fall, but when I hung them in the garage like I always do, they got rotten LONG before they got ripe! First time I've had that happen with one I've hung in the garage!

Anybody know anything about any of these varieties---or---have any recommendations for other yellow/gold/orange "big," indeterminate tomatoes! No cherries, and definitely bigger than a golf ball!!!

Thanks guys,

Skybird

Dr. Wyche's Yellow

gold

6-16 oz

80 days

meaty interior, small seed cavities, excellent sweet flavor, nice texture

50/2.75 Seed Savers

Moonglow OG

orange

4-8 oz

80 days

Very good flavor, keeps well

25/2.75 Seed Savers

Kellogg's Breakfast

orange

1 lb +

85-90 days

excellent flavor

50/2.75 Seed Savers

Gold Medal

gold (? gold and red ?)

8-12 oz

90 days

yellow fruit heavily marbled with red inside and out, mildly sweet flavor

50/2.75 Seed Savers

Powers Heirloom

light yellow

3-5 oz

80 days

sweet mild flavor, plum shaped

50/2.75 Seed Savers

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elkwc(6b)

Skybird,
I've grown Gold Medal here 2 years ago. Was a tough tomato year as the last 3 have been here. A drought year and some disease issues. It survived all season. Was a nice looking plant that I never picked one fruit from. It had a few small greenies on it when frost hit. Not sure if I will grow it again.

KB is one of my favorite orange/yellows. Usually produces well and has good taste as long as the temps don't get too cool and you don't over water it. I've grown KBX several times. It has great taste but a poor producer here in my garden.

Juane Flammee' is another that I really like and on my must grow list every year. Most fruit are in the 2-3 ounce range. Heavy production and good disease resistance. They might be just a tad smaller than you want.

Woodle Orange is another I grew last year that is a good producer. It wasn't as big here last year as most say it should be. Probably due to weather conditions. Most fruit were in the 5-8 ounce range.

I grew 1884 Yellow Pink Heart for the first time last year and really liked it. Some call it a bicolor. Fruit vary in color. Some are a solid yellow while some have a slight blush on the blossom end and those will usually have a pink heart when sliced open. That is where the name comes from.

The other yellow/golds I have on my list for this year is Casey's Pure Yellow( I grew it in 09 and it only produced a few fruit. Had it in a less than ideal location so trying it again.), Lillian's Yellow, Golden Queen non USDA and Orange Minsk.

I've grown many more. Thought to keep it short would limit comments to those I grow every year and those on the 11 list if Im able to grow any. Jay

    Bookmark   February 27, 2011 at 10:00AM
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digit(ID/WA)

Oh Boy! One of my favorite subjects - tomatoes!

I don't know nuthin', Skybird . . . . but, maybe you will tolerate me, please . . .

Posted by skybird, Anybody know anything about any of these varieties---or---have any recommendations for other yellow/gold/orange "big," indeterminate tomatoes!

It was a fairly bad tomato year last year here, as well. I grew Orange Minsk and the plant only had 3 ripe fruits, if I remember right. Two were very large and DW loved them! I'll grow another plant this year.

Jaune Flamme has been a variety that I've wanted to grow for a long, long time. It was something of a disappointment last year! The skin was a bit tough . . . Now, I'm a pushover for tomato flavor but spitting the skin out for a snack-size tomato is only acceptable behavior in the garden.

Thanks to Jay! I will be trying Woodle Orange in 2011. The press on that variety is outstanding!

Also, I will be trying Kellogg's Breakfast. Now, I am doing this with some trepidation . . . Jay, David, Jali, and others have sung the praises of KB & KBX. I am really concerned that it may not have time to ripen its crop here.

Jeff Casey also sent me Pure Yellow. There's a real question mark in my mind about that variety, also.

The latter part of this month has been really cold (-10F yesterday)! I hope that we don't have a lingering cold spring as has so often been the situation around here! I am NOT making the mistake that I did last year of starting the tomatoes real early. However, I can only delay so long in setting them out and expecting a crop from what-might-be 80-day varieties.

Steve

    Bookmark   February 27, 2011 at 11:53AM
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elkwc(6b)

Steve,
From my experience in the one year that I grew Casey's Pure Yellow it was later than KB. I was concerned some if you would have time for it. You should have plenty of time for the Dana's Dusky Rose though. I picked my first one in late June here and they produced till frost. Jay

    Bookmark   February 27, 2011 at 1:28PM
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gjmancini

lemon plum. Havent grown it in a couple of years, but it has wonder flavor and great for cooking.

gloria

    Bookmark   February 27, 2011 at 2:35PM
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highalttransplant(z 5 Western CO)

Skybird, I grew Gold Medal last year, and was pleased with it. In the picture below are two bi-colored tomatoes. They are Striped German and Gold Medal.

I believe the Striped German's were the more pleated ones in the front, and the Gold Medals were the more roundish ones towards the back. Sorry, I wish I'd kept better notes with my photos.

I grew Kellogg's Breakfast in '09 and here are my notes:
9-21-09 First ripe - Very large, very late, not much flavor, few seeds or liquid.

Your milage may vary : )

Bonnie

    Bookmark   February 27, 2011 at 3:32PM
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Skybird - z5, Denver, Colorado

Thank you, guys, for the recommendations! I just spent FIVE HOURS looking up TOMATOES online!

Possibly I'm even more undecided now! Here's what I've found and what I'm thinkin' so far!

Jaune Flamme
orange
2-3 oz - only! Tatiana's says 2 oz (another report says 4-6 oz)
55 days ?
excellent sharp taste

Sounds good, but I am hoping for something larger---but I'm finding conflicting reports about size as you can see above! So far, probably because of the soil (CLAY), my tomatoes are ALWAYS smaller than they're "supposed to be," so I think I might be disappointed with this. And I definitely don't want "tough" skin---your opinion of that on this one, Jay? Bonnie, haven't you grown this one in the past? Opinion as to size and skin?

Woodle Orange
orange
5-5 oz -- Tatiana's says 1 lb
85 days
very good flavor

This one's definitely in the running! Pictures look good and it sounds good! BUT, the only place I'm finding seed available is Baker Creek, and I wasn't planning to get anything from them, so with shipping, 25 seeds would be VERY expensive. I've already looked a lot, but might try a little bit more! (Where was yours from, Digit? You use Baker Creek, don't ya?)

The 1884 Yellow Pink Heart (which I found mostly as Yellow 1884 Pink Heart) has the same problem with seed availability as the Woodle! Might look a little bit more to see what I can find on that one too!

From what I've found, Lemon Plum sounds like it's better for cooking than eating fresh, and while I hope to have enough to do that some day---probably when my soil gets better---for now I barely get enough to eat fresh (and not even enough to give any away!), so I'm gonna stick with things that sound like they're more for "take the salt shaker out into the garden with you!" But thank you for the recommendation, GJ!

Your comments about the KB are interesting, Bonnie! In my explorations today I also found a place where people were rating it, and the flavor ranged from mostly non-existant to excellent! I am more and more convinced that the flavor of any one tomato variety has much more to do with the soil and growing conditions than with the actual variety, and my experience with it last year was pretty much similar to yours, but I've heard enough good things about it here on RMG that I'm gonna try it one more year! This year is Sink or Swim for Kellogg's Breakfast in my yard!

BTW, if I was still able to salivate, your picture would have me dripping all over my keyboard! With the few and poor tomatoes I got last summer, I am SO ready for a year of GOOD production and GOOD flavor! Can't come soon enough for me!!!

Does anybody know anything about the Dr. Wyche's Yellow? I found that one last year sometime, and it sounded good enough to remember the name "for future reference!"

AND in my lengthy explorations today, I found (wasn't looking for more -- honest!) several more possibilities for yellow/orange tomatoes! Any comments or opinions about any of these?

As I mentioned above, which ones I wind up getting is going to depend at least in part about which varieties I can get where! The more I can get from one place, obviously the cheaper they'll be since I won't have to pay shipping from a bunch of different companies.

I really like the "old time taste" description with this one -- but not wild about the skin description!

Dejena Lee's Golden Girl (Heritage Seed)
yellow/orange
"medium" -or- "large" -or- 8-10 oz -or- 3" fruit
80 days
1929 - 1st prize at Chicago Fair for 10 years! ?
delicious old-time taste, sweet, tangy flavor
semi-thick skin!

Earl of Edgecombe
orange
6-12 oz
80 days
taste is excellent, not too sweet, not too tart, just right
dwarf growing habit - tree type

Amana Orange
orange
4-8 oz -or- 12-16 oz ? "beefsteak"
80-90 days
very good sweet mild flavor

And this one sounds really good because of the 60 days! but it was called determinate on one site, and indeterminate on another! Anybody know anything about it? (Might be a problem finding seed for this one too!)

Orange Blossom
DETERMINATE or indeterminate???
yellow/orange
6-7 oz
60 DAYS!

Thanks for the help, everyone! Oh, how I wish I had an acre to plant with tomatoes! SOME of them would have to come out good!

Skybird

P.S. I'm sorry you don't know nothin', Digit! I'll pray for you!!! ;-)
And thank for chiming in here! The more discussion the better---altho it should be obvious by now that I'll just keep getting confuseder and confuseder!

    Bookmark   February 27, 2011 at 6:37PM
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colokid(5)

I think I better not get into this, cause I think a tomato should be round and red (or at least pink). Last year I grew, or tried to grow, 36 variates. This year for lack of space, who knows.
Its getting time to start things, now where did I place those pepper seeds? ..KennyP

    Bookmark   February 28, 2011 at 9:34AM
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digit(ID/WA)

Kenny, DW forced me to grow Yellow Pear for 4 years of abject failure because of splitting. Also, she claimed my grandmother's tomato, which is a pink "saladette" was her favorite. That's what started me down this road . . .

It isn't that I mind, however. Color seems to have a direct relationship to flavor. Yes, they aren't "tomato red" flavor but they can be wonderful! Also, I have found some non-reds that are early and don't easily split! And finally, I'm still in that heated and grueling run-off to learn which variety is the best cherry: SunGold or SunSugar!!

An envelope from Tomato Growers Supply arrived in my mailbox yesterday! I had forgotten that "Dagma's Perfection" seed had been back ordered! Dagma's Perfection is a bi-color slicer, Skybird. I am really encouraged by the 73 days to maturity rating. I don't know where Tomato Grower supplies are but that seed is widely available this year and you can even buy plants, mail-order.

Steve

    Bookmark   March 1, 2011 at 10:22AM
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billie_ladybug(5b)

digit - see my kids love yellow pear and I have no problems with splitting.

Glad I am not the only one who had problems with Brandywine. I tried several of them and had terrible results. Also was not impressed with Cherokee Purple, set lots of fruit relatively early even, but would not ripen, they stayed green forever and them were purple mush. Maybe it was just a bad year for them.

Billie

    Bookmark   March 1, 2011 at 2:12PM
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pondgardener

Skybird,
Take a look on the Totally Tomatoes website/catalog for a description of Dr. Wyche's Yellow...seems he had a circus that he overwintered near Hugo, Oklahoma and used some of the resulting manure to grow his tomatoes. I recently ordered some of these seeds from TGS and hopefully I don't have to raid the pens at the local zoo to get good flavor out of this tomato! Good Luck...

    Bookmark   March 3, 2011 at 9:15PM
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pondgardener

Skybird,
I been looking at too many catalogs...the above description was in the SSE catalog, which you have already seen...mea culpa

    Bookmark   March 4, 2011 at 12:34PM
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