Tomatoes '13

highalttransplant(z 5 Western CO)March 23, 2013

Okay, I am a little surprised there hasn't been a tomato thread started for this year yet, so here we go.

The past couple of seasons have been the worst tomato crops I've ever had, mainly I think because the wintersown tomatoes just sprout too late to get a decent crop before the first frost roll around. So this year, instead of wintersowing them, I am going to start them indoors.

The number of plants the I have space for is a pretty firm 17. Not willing to give up any of the pepper square footage!

Don't have time or $ to place any orders, so trying to work with what I have on hand.

Here is what I have sown so far:

*Amish Paste
*Aunt Gertie's Gold
*Black Cherry
*Indian Stripe
*Matt's Wild Cherry
*Earl's Faux
*Virginia Sweets

So that leaves 10 more spots to fill. Here are the ones I am trying to decide between:

*Box Car Willie
*Caspian Pink
*Giant Belgium
*Neves Azorean Red
*Isis Candy
*Amazon Chocolate OR Black Russian OR Black Krim
*Gold Medal OR Mammoth German Gold OR Yellow Brandywine
*Soldacki OR Rainy's Maltese (I've grown them both and liked them equally well)
*Some type of oxheart - I have about a dozen different ones. Need one that is very productive. Not sure which one to pick.
*Gold Currant and/or White Currant - I've read that these can be grown in a hanging basket. Will they really produce that way?

I got some good feedback about some of the varieties on this list from the folks on the tomato forum, but nobody over there seems to care for the currant types. Are they even worth trying? I thought they would be good for snacking and salads.

Okay, so any help narrowing down the OR's would be appreciated.


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I had a little trouble sleeping last night, Bonnie. You made me realize that I had no 2013 list! Didn't I? Are you sure? Was there a tomato topic where I failed to go on and on . . . on?

Gary O Sena
Rainy's Maltese
Dagma's Perfection
Earl of Edgecombe
Casey's Pure Yellow (a gold ;o)
Jaliranchr (aka Bloody Butcher)
Pink Pearls
Gold Dust*
Cold Set*
OTV Brandywine*
Pantano Romanesco*
Early Girl
Big Beef
Large Red Cherry
Dr. Carolyn
Sun Sugar

May I say something about them? Blood pressure climbing! The drumbeat of pulse in my ears! Gary O Sena held up better than Maltese last year in a difficult season for splitting. Maltese has just about the best flavor for an early beefsteak that I have found. Dagma's Perfection doesn't have a lot of flavor but excellent late-season production. Early of Edgecombe was a wonderful tomato but barely ripened in a fairly good late season. I'm really looking forward to seeing how well Casey's will do again. Thessaloniki because it was the first to show me that I can grow nice heirlooms. Thank you Jaliranchr for your wonderful suggestions and help! Since Kimberley did better than even the seed vendor expected (but had a rather large core), I want to try hybridizing - with Grandma's Pink Pearls, Porter and Jaliranchr (we will see how all that goes :o). Buisson because it is nearly as nice as Jaliranchr. Gold Dust*, Cold Set*, OTV Brandywine*, Pantano Romanesco*, Fireworks* because I think I should but don't really know because they are *new-to-me! Legend - why not? Jay's because it did so very, very well in '11 despite not being what I expected. Thank you Jay and maybe we can do a little research to find out something about it and it is not something I want to lose. Early Girl, Goliath and Big Beef because they can outperform anything else. Large Red Cherry because, once again, I failed to order Sweet Chelsea. Dr. Carolyn because I want to get away from ordering the hybrid cherries. Sun Sugar and Sungold because I can't.

Bonnie ~ big breath ~ I have only a little experience with some of yours (see Rainy's Maltese above). Black Cherry split something terrible for me. Box Car Willie was one of those that, frustratingly, had only 1 ripe fruit right in the middle of the plant at the very end of the season. The currants? Don't know but the smaller the fruit the more tedious the harvest. I think it was Gardener's Delight that convinced me that I would never grow anything of that size or smaller, again. Except the golden cherries and maybe Sweet Baby Girl and Sweet 100 I will pick if they shrink to that size by the end of the season, and . . .

~ gasp! Steve

    Bookmark   March 24, 2013 at 10:07AM
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I have grown some of the ones you listed and will tell you how they worked for me.Matts Wild Cherry I would consider a currant type. Very small and hard to pick a lot but do produce.
Black Cherry very tasty but at least 2 weeks after Sun Gold to ripen. Earl's Faux, Box Car Willile and Mortgage Lifter not good producers and late to ripen. Would need a hot summer.
Caspian Pink good results and a little smaller than Brandywine. Neaves Azorean a good large tomato but later to ripen so if have cool summer it may not ripen at all. Black Russian my pick in black tomatoes as it is produces earlier and a lot and tastes good. I planted 8 tomatoes this week. Brandy, Gold Nugget, Sun Gold, Sweet Million, Black Russian, Azchoyka, Rainbow, Kotlas and a early paste someone gave me seeds for years ago. Several years ago I was growing 35 kinds but now not doing Farmers Market anymore.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2013 at 11:44PM
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Thanks for sharing your experience with Neves Azorean, Margaret. I was wondering if I was missing out on not trying that one.

It is interesting the response of different varieties to cool climates. Or, to cool overnight temperatures . . . It isn't just a matter of the days-to-maturity rating that some seed outfit tacked onto them somewhere.

You know, I am convinced that Bloody Butcher, despite its name, is kind of a tender thing. Still, it progresses right along and is likely to be the very first to ripen fruit in my garden.

Some have flowers that just won't set fruit until the weather has really warmed. Dagma's Perfection seems that way. The years I've grown it, it looked like I was going to get next to nothing off the plants. Then, it sets fruit and ripens them very quickly.


    Bookmark   March 26, 2013 at 9:32AM
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highalttransplant(z 5 Western CO)

Well, I finalized the list and finished sowing on Sunday.

Here's the complete list:

Aunt Gertie's Gold
Amish Paste
Amazon Chocolate
Anna Russian (oxheart)

Black Cherry (I've grown this one a couple of times, and it is fairly late for a cherry type, but the flavor makes up for it, IMO. Don't remember if I had any cracking issues or not.)

Box Car Wilie (Hope my experience is better than yours Steve! I think I tried to grow this one once before and didn't get germination. I was wintersowing then, which might have affected germination, and also used a different seed source, so we'll see what happens this time.)

Earl's Faux (Seems like when I grew this one before that production was average, and I was harvesting ripe fruit well ahead of the first frost.)

Galina's Yellow Cherry (the few Isis Candy seeds I had left didn't look worth planting, so I decided to try this one again. The seed came from someone on this forum, it may have been David. It was several years ago though, so I sowed heavily. Hopefully I'll get at least one or two sprouts)

Giant Belgium

Gold Currant (I decided that I have to try at least one currant type. It seems people either love or hate them all, so at least this way I'll know. Plus, the way my kids love to sneak and eat the ground cherries, I'm hoping I can trick them into eating some tomatoes, haha! Now I just need to get a hanging basket for the front porch.)

Gold Medal
Indian Stripe
Ludmilla's Pink Heart (ended up sowing two different oxhearts)
Matt's Wild Cherry

Neves Azorean Red (I've grown this one before, and was able to get ripe tomatoes before the first frost.)

Virginia Sweets

... and Aunt Molly's Ground Cherry (okay, not a tomato, but a close relative ...)


    Bookmark   March 26, 2013 at 3:49PM
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Well, there's been about 24hrs for others to jump in and I've had another night's sleep on my response . . .

Okay, now I'm back to wondering about Neves Azorean (rolling eyes smilie).

Windwhipped's tomato of choice and, perhaps, near necessity was Galina. I think geography has a great deal to do with variety choice for most everything. Probably, I should realize that Margaret near Missoula is in an area more similar to here than Bonnie near Glenwood Springs.

David sent me the OTV Brandywine as he sent me Josie's Grandmother, years ago. That was the year of the disaster of the buckets: Where the plants touched the upside down buckets, they froze. Where I used upside down pots, the entire plants froze because of the holes in the pots. Then -- a windstorm blew some of the tags away! I never knew if Josie's Grandmother died in my tomato patch that year, or not! What with all the confusion and replanting . . .

Probably offended David, I hope I don't offend Jay too. I had to sleep on what I have to say next . . . One plant 2 years ago was a real honest to goodness Kellogg's Breakfast - it showed up really late with ripe fruit but did reasonably well. The other that I had was an orangy-red that ripened very early, on a very nice plant and it had wonderful texture and flavor! I saved seed on this plant with its Kellogg's Breakfast marker. This year, I've got 2 potato-leaf seedlings amongst the regular leaf seedlings!

What have I got?! Actually, I've got both of 'em! I moved them into 4-packs and they will be in 4" pots before their garden adventure begins. Apparently, the orangy-red was a cross. I can't remember what the dominant/recessive situation with the leaves are but will have to explore that and see how these 2 types do. (Gardening is so much fun! :o)


    Bookmark   March 27, 2013 at 11:23AM
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I'm new to this forum and have been in the area a little over a year. I grew San Marzanos and Principie Borgese in my garage last year under T5 lights. I'm expanding out back this year and am trying the following varieties:

Cosmonaut Volkov
Black Sea Man*
Italian Heritage
Moon glow
Hillbilly Potato Leaf

*I have some BSMs under the T5 lights now that are doing pretty well.

This probably a pretty ambitious list as we're at 8,500' but, what the hey...nothing ventured... ;-)

    Bookmark   March 30, 2013 at 8:47PM
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If heaven was a tomato it would be Amazon Chocolate! I grew it last year and I still think about the amazing B.L.T.'s they made. Can't wait to grow it again this year!

    Bookmark   April 2, 2013 at 1:58AM
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xaroline(zone 3 Calgary)

We go for cold tolerant and short season here.
My list this year is:
Caro Rich
Mortgage Lifter
Double Rich
Andy's Buckflats Wonder
Ardwyna Paste

Sasha's Altai
Tribe's Toubique
Cougar Red

Geranium Kiss
Purple Smudge
Cherokee Purple

Black Truffle
Dancing with Smurfs
Blue Pitts
OSU Blue
Indigo Rose

Health Kick
Sophie's Choice

These were sown around the 25 th of March and most have sprouts under lights indoors.

    Bookmark   April 2, 2013 at 8:53AM
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Posted by phelansmom writes: If heaven was a tomato it would be Amazon Chocolate! I grew it last year and I still think about the amazing B.L.T.'s they made. Can't wait to grow it again this year!

That's the kind of thinking I can appreciate!

I wish DW liked tomatoes with a more pronounced flavor. She is quite down on black tomatoes or I could venture into that genre. Find out if Black Sea Man or some of these others would work for me . . .

I used to grow Fantastics every year, Xaroline. That was back in the days when I had 1 slicer variety and 1 cherry tomato variety in the garden. It was usually but not always fool-proof (and I'm proof of that ;o).

Health Kick was one of those that never ripened a single fruit the one year I grew them. I was very frustrated.

"Dancing with Smurfs" ? "Geranium Kiss" ???

You've got WSU's Cougar Red. Irish Eyes Seed Company has that! Maybe that is one I should be trying. I mean, I used to live and go to school where I could hit WSU with a thrown rock! That's what we did all day - throw rocks at WSU.

U of I Vandal

    Bookmark   April 2, 2013 at 8:12PM
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xaroline(zone 3 Calgary)

I have grown "Fantastics" before but not for several years.
Dancing with Smurfs is one of the "blue" tomatoes out of OSU.
Geranium Kiss is a patio type.
Health Kick has been good here---it is the high lycopene tomatoe.

    Bookmark   April 3, 2013 at 4:42AM
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I typed a long lengthy note about tomatoes and it dissapeared yesterday! Isis candy is a large later cherry and is ivory and then blushes pink and splits.
Kimberly has very pretty ferny foliage but not a good producer
Legend, Aunt Gerlie Gold and Anna Russian few tomatoes
Black Sea Man a friend grows and loves it
Stupice, Siletz, 4th of July - small saladette and just okay
Cherokee Purple good tasting but not always ripen here
Azchoyka is a tennis ball yellow that is much tastier than Taxi and the skin doesn't bruise easily like Taxi
Been fighting aphids on peppers in the house. Happened once before and I wonder if they got in the potting soil stored in the shed? Got peas, potatoes,kohlrabi, fennel, carrots and glads planted today. Need to dig up the bed that the beets are going in hopefully tomorrow. Dug parsnips Monday and Tuesday peeled and cut them up at Senior Center and we had candied parsnips for lunch today. YUM!

    Bookmark   April 3, 2013 at 11:28PM
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highalttransplant(z 5 Western CO)

Well, everything's up now, except Anna Russian, Soldacki, and Virginia Sweets.

Since some of the seed was from 2010 or older, I sowed extra.

Apparently, that wasn't necessary ...

So far I have 38 sprouts, and only enough room in the garden for 17 plants. Looks like I'll have a few to give away come May.

    Bookmark   April 5, 2013 at 3:44PM
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great lists! Nebraska Wedding, Rutgers, Mortgage Lifter, Persimmon, Bloody Butcher all did great outdoors in Livingston in 2012, so good

    Bookmark   April 6, 2013 at 12:26AM
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david52 Zone 6

I just finished planting my seed - this is the latest I've done do.

Dagma's Perfection (from Steve)
Casey's Pure Yellow (from Steve)
Heidi (looking for that tart, strong tomato taste for sauce)
Pink Climber (huge beefsteaks)
Rainy's Maltese (haven't grown that for a few years)
Tappy's Finest (because of the name)
Thessaloniki (reliable standby - seeing if this continues to avoid the diseases)
Off The Vine (big beefsteak)
Vorlon (dark flesh, large tomato, great sauce and dried)
Ludmilla's Ox Heart (comes late, but very productive)
Cold Set (early tomato)
Goliath Hybrid (going to see if all that bred-for disease resistance is worth the effort.

4 trays X 36 cells, so 144 seeded. We'll see what we end up with. These are on heat mats with covered domes, so germination is in 4 days.

    Bookmark   April 6, 2013 at 5:03PM
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rt_peasant(5 CO)

I grew Neves Azorean Red for the first time last year. Not a big producer for me, but what I did get made up for it in taste. Probably the best red slicer I've ever tasted. Big, bold flavor, more tangy than sweet. My wife and I were fighting over who got to eat the NARs!

Here's the grow list for my small garden:
Cherokee Purple
Neves Azorean Red
Rutgers Select
Brandy Boy F1
Brandy Boy F9

The first 4 I've grown before, and all are excellent! Brandy Boy is new for me this year, and I'll be comparing a dehybridized version (courtesy of John A) with the Burpee original. I'm also going to try growing Moskovich in a container to see if I can get some tomatoes by early July!


    Bookmark   April 11, 2013 at 12:16AM
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kvenkat(5a Colo)

Here is my wee list.

Green Zebra
Cherokee Purple

All have germinated although I had to replant the Sungold as my first set of sprouts keeled over. Didn't get the covers off fast enough.
If I still had some Isis Candy seeds left, I would have done some this year too. Oh well, going with new varieties (for me at least).

    Bookmark   April 12, 2013 at 11:53PM
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Skybird - z5, Denver, Colorado

And my wee list! One of each!

Sungold - on my Permanent List
Sweet Baby Girl - on my Permanent List
Sweetie - first year
Mormon World's Earliest
Early Glee
Break O'Day
Earl of Edgecombe - one of my favorites
Amana Orange - first year
Dr. Wyche's Yellow - a little late, but big, good tomatoes
Rainy's Maltese - seed from Digit - had a bad year with all my tomatoes last year and trying Rainy's again, Digit! (Woodle Orange turned out to be red, so not trying that one again!)

Seeded a few days ago and right now they're all snuggly in my unused main bath with the door closed and the heat vent wide open!


    Bookmark   April 13, 2013 at 1:57AM
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I am encouraged to get back in here to compare notes with Skybird! Yeah, what she said . . . . .

Okay, I won't make it that easy - have I ever?!

Dr. Wyche's is out. It is just tooooo late! Earl of Edgecombe is IN! I am hoping it is just a little earlier. Very nice fruit!

I really liked Woodle Orange, Skybird, even if it turned out to be red. I don't think I could ask much more from a little red tomato - early, tasty, nice fruit, healthy, well-behaved plant. Still, I have these extra, small tomatoes this year so I guess I'll see Woodle again in 2014. Now, what are we going to do about it being red?! I am all for changing the name - huh?


    Bookmark   April 13, 2013 at 7:29AM
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I love to follow everybody's posts in the forum and thought I would add in my tomato list. It's not as exciting or fancy as the lists I'm seeing but I'm still pretty new to gardening; this will be my third year. I have 2 small raised beds for veggies and I also use containers for a few plants.

My 2013 tomato list:
Pruden's purple
Sun Gold
Bonnie best
yellow pear (the kids love it)
Egg Yolk (this is a new one for me)
Super sweet 100
Gold rush currant

Last year was a terrible season for me and I lost most of my plants to various diseases. I tried Black Krim, Cherokee purple and brandywine with almost no fruit. I decided to be a little less ambitious with my large tomatoes this year since I have a great produce stand nearby and they have amazing tomatoes.

I will definitely be giving plants away because I sowed way too many thinking I wouldn't get any germination. I used an indoor mini greenhouse to start plants this year and ended up with at least 95% germination. I never had any luck starting seeds before and I've been thrilled with my results this year using the greenhouse and a few CFL bulbs for light.

    Bookmark   April 14, 2013 at 3:38PM
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I'm new here, planting my first vegetables this year.

Y'all have really long lists.

Here's my tiny list: 1 in a Topsy Turvy, 1 in a pot on the patio and the rest in a raised garden
Better Boy x 2
Celebrity x 2
Big Beef

Now just hoping I can keep the bugs away or at least not the big slimy ones.

A couple of plants look really good and then 2 others look good at the top and are kind of yellowing at the bottom.

I companion planted with Sandia and Anaheim peppers and some basil too.

    Bookmark   May 29, 2013 at 5:49PM
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