My Brandywine Sudduth is Tangy But Not Very Sweet

yumtomatoes(10a/FLA)March 20, 2012

I use Tomato Tone and Miracle Grow Tomato Plant Food in a 55% pine bark fine based potting mix in 18 gallon containers. I have to water at least once a day since it is hot and dry here this time of year. They get about 7 hours of sun a day.

Minimal cracking so I don't think they are either under or over watered. These are my first 2 tomatoes from the plant. I let them ripen on the vine until almost fully ripe and then set them on the counter out of the sun for 2 days and they were perfectly ripe.

Aren't these supposed to be a nice balance of sweet and tangy? What makes tomatoes sweet?

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sweetquietplace(6 WNC Mtn.)

My first guess would be to add a little lime to mellow out the pine bark. I poke a couple of Tums down in the soil around mine also.

    Bookmark   March 20, 2012 at 10:57PM
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carolyn137(z4/5 NY)

Most folks might say that the taste is almost winey in nature, so no, not sweet, and I tend to agree.

THe main factors associated with taste are first, the human perception of taste and there's actually a genetic association, second, the weather in any given season, third, how you grow your tomatoes, what amendments you use, how often and how much.

Folks who bring fruits for a tomato tasting may bring the same variety and live not that far apart and the fruits can taste differently.

Many say that Brandywine has a unique taste, and perhaops it does, but there are others such as Prue that I also think has a wonderful unique taste as well.

So I see no need to change anything you're doing to attain a certain taste b'c there are too many variables, as I noted above, that simply cannot be controlled.


    Bookmark   March 21, 2012 at 12:58AM
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the pine bark based media is jungle growth for vegetables and it has lime in it.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2012 at 8:54AM
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Thanks for the explanation Carolyn. I was expecting sweeter and not so tangy. Guess I didn't understand what these tasted like before I grew them.

    Bookmark   March 21, 2012 at 10:25AM
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I am in zone 7 so this may not apply to your 10a tomatoes, but my brandywine sudduth always get sweeter as the season progresses. Don't know if it is because the onset of really hot weather or drier conditions or something else.

A lot of fruits (grapes, melons) get sweeter when the condition is dryer. Is this true at all for tomatoes?

    Bookmark   March 21, 2012 at 11:23AM
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ikea - I think maybe you are right and I am over watering my tomatoes. It is hot and dry here right now and I worry about BER but my last tomatoes weren't even very tangy, just watery tasting.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2012 at 7:53AM
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I would say that Burpee's Brandy Boy is sweeter than regular pink Brandywine. Of course, that's my taste buds. I've had good luck with Brandy Boy, although it still produces some odd-shaped tomatoes.

    Bookmark   March 25, 2012 at 12:45PM
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RabbitRabbit(9 CA)

I haven't grown Brandywine, but what I did notice last year was that the first tomatoes of the season weren't as sweet or intensely flavoured as later in the season. As other people have said, there are so many variables but I do wonder whether it is a matter of having more moisture and less sun. Even though you're getting 7 hours of sun at this time of year, perhaps later in the season you'll get 8 or even 9 and that might affect the sugar content. Give your plant a chance and see whether it changes ;)

    Bookmark   March 25, 2012 at 3:52PM
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Oh, we will definitely be getting more sun later in the season but the problem is that it will be too hot/humid to set fruit and even if you can set fruit, it ripens unevenly due to the day time temps being too hot.

But you all are probably right - the conditions were not optimal for the best tasting fruit and I probably over watered them.

The worst part of all is that squirrels got 5 of my largest fruits :(

    Bookmark   March 25, 2012 at 5:53PM
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