Volunteers gone wild

harveyhorses(7 Midlothian Va)June 26, 2012

For the past few years they have done really well and are great for snacking and salads, but this year they are exploding. They grow in clusters, are 1 1/2 to 2 inches long, roma shaped and really sweet. I have tried to figure out their origin, but no luck. I am saving the seeds this year for sure, but I'd like to call it something other than volunteer.

O.K. I know how many trillions of varieties there are, but just thought somebody might have an idea, or a guess. Or want to try some next year. :))

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harveyhorses(7 Midlothian Va)

One more picture, thanks for humoring me. I think one of them started to blush this morning. sigh.

    Bookmark   June 26, 2012 at 4:25PM
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missingtheobvious(Blue Ridge 7a)

Could we have more history, please? For instance:

About how many years have you had it?

Has it always been stable, or has it changed over the years?

If it's changed over the years, you have a unique variety. Keep growing it out until you see no changes for a few years (I don't know how many years that's supposed to be). Name it anything you like (check the major tomato databases to make sure there isn't already a variety with that name).

    Bookmark   June 26, 2012 at 9:27PM
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harveyhorses(7 Midlothian Va)

They have grown like this for three years, the year before that, I planted some romas that didn't do diddly. We always had some type of cherry (they keep my sister motivated while she is helping me)
There are already so many varieties, I can't believe it is something new, but I can't find anything like this from the descriptions. This year they are just laden with fruit. now if they would just turn red.
That is really all the history I can remember, Last year was the first year I saved my own seeds, and kept track of stuff. More or less...

    Bookmark   June 26, 2012 at 10:03PM
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missingtheobvious(Blue Ridge 7a)

It is absolutely possible for this to be a new variety. New varieties happen all the time. It's just like people: how many people in the world are exactly alike, genetically? Not simply appearance, but also size, body type, intelligence, personality, abilities and talents, inherited tendencies to various diseases and medical conditions, and every single gene in their DNA. Well, tomato crosses are the same way.

Three years seems a bit soon for a new cross to stabilize, particularly since you don't know where this came from -- i.e. before this appeared you hadn't grown anything that size and shape, so even if one of the parent plants was a hybrid, there should still have been a lot of genes which differed in the parent plants, and it would take a few years to resolve all of that. So if there was more than one volunteer in each generation, there should have been observable differences. [I think I remember seeing varieties declared stable after 5 or 6 generations -- but don't take that as gospel.]

    Bookmark   June 27, 2012 at 2:53AM
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dickiefickle(5B Dousman,Wi.)

Most likely this is from a variety (already named) that you previously planted .
so missingtheobvious...So every person is a variety ?
To many times people lose track of a name and just start a new name.
Or with imaginary differences like "its just like "XM" but the plant is taller or the fruit is a tenth of a gram more,or the leaves are greener,or this one ripens one day sooner,or any such nonsense ,then they name it something new .

    Bookmark   June 27, 2012 at 3:49AM
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harveyhorses(7 Midlothian Va)

I am going with the tags on the wrong plant theory.
The roma I planted did not do well at all, but the cherries always do. Maybe I just bought the original and took it to be a volunteer? All the clustering plants I can find have round fruit.
Whatever it is it is productive. Small and tasty.

    Bookmark   June 27, 2012 at 8:30AM
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I would guess that its Roma. Volunteers can be pure or crossed. Many of my volunteers are pure from the previous year whereas others are clearly crosses. I'm with dickiefickle on "new varieties." I think some of them are the same plant re-named something else. Or, in some cases, they descend from the same seed source. For example, I have found little difference between some of the black tomatoes. Other times they may originate from a seed mix up and someone who buys it renames it something different. For example I have a tomato that my father purchased at a nursery that was labeled brandywine. It turned out to be a black tomato of some unknown variety. Its probably black krim or black, but it does have slightly different cracking paterns (concentric versus radial). It also tastes slightly different than other blacks. However it does breed true and is most likely just a strain of some existing variety where someone switched the id sticks or mixed up the seeds they were planting. In any case, its not a new variety, just a mislabeled existing variety. A stablized cross on the other hand is something different and should be named.

    Bookmark   June 27, 2012 at 11:19AM
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harveyhorses(7 Midlothian Va)

Kevinitis you are exactly right, Look just like Roma, only NOT determinate, and the fruits are smaller than what (I thought) Romas were, 2 inches top to bottom, is that correct?

    Bookmark   June 27, 2012 at 11:46AM
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