How consistent are Sungolds?

Brett-CpGJune 20, 2011

Hello all,

I went to the farmers market this past weekend to buy some extra sungolds because my room mates are so efficient at cleaning off my plant. Interestingly, I noticed that the tomatoes I got from the FM were about 25-50% bigger than the ones coming from my plant, and were just a touch less sweet (still absolutely delicious). Does this variation have anything to do with the fact that the Sungold is a hybrid, or is it more likely a result of environmental differences?

By the way, if any of you are out there even THINKING about buying a sungold...just do it. Mine has been setting fruit in 95+ degree heat up against a brick wall no less, and is over 7' tall, even though I planted a 6" plant at the end of April. I've already pulled at least 100 fruits, and it has 200-300 more still on.

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It could be environmental--like better soil and care and/or more sun, or it could be he has an OP version and is selling it as the hybrid.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2011 at 9:28AM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Agree. If it is Sun Gold then all the differences can easily be attributed to different growing conditions.


    Bookmark   June 21, 2011 at 9:37AM
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This isn't exactly the same situation, but I have two sungolds in my garden.

One was a purchased plant. It went into the ground on 3/15 in a wall of water and started producing around 5/30. It's covered and blossoms and ripening a handful or so of fruit every day. It is still fairly short, has smallish leaves and is putting most of its energy into really abundant fruit production.

The other was started from seed, planted out about 4/20. It hasn't started to ripen fruit yet, and it hasn't set much fruit either. It has has larger leaves than my other plant and it recently passed it up in height. If I were after tomato leaves instead of fruits, this plant would be a champion for sure. I suspect that it is just a matter of maturity and that in a month this plant will have more fruit than the first plant did at this same stage (and it will also be way too big for it's five foot cage... it's still only maybe 4.5 ft. tall -- we had a rough, cool spring)), but maybe it will just always be more leafy. I suspect that what happened was that I used different kinds of organic matter in each location, and compost I put in the soil under the second plant was very high in nitrogen.

Sungold fruit flavor and size can also vary through the season depending on the growing conditions.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2011 at 2:14PM
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I have three sun golds which have produced almost 12 pounds. I am waging war with stink bugs right now. The bugzooka has taken out many. I am going to add three Japanese beetle traps.

Two plants were transplanted in at the same time. Then one additional one was added later. I am getting about 25 a day. They will probably slow down soon due to increasing temps. Last year they stopped in July/August, then kicked back in late Sept/Oct.

    Bookmark   June 21, 2011 at 10:20PM
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I am waiting on the first fruit to ripen, but my Sungold has some massive tomatoes on it right now (for a cherry variety), they are very nearly as large as the ripe fruit on the Glacier next to it. I have always grown Sweet 100 and these Sungolds are significantly larger, if they taste as good I may have a new favorite cherry variety.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2011 at 3:44AM
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natal(Louisiana 8b)

The size of my Sun Golds varies during the season, but the taste is consistently sweet and fruity!

    Bookmark   June 24, 2011 at 9:58PM
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tdscpa(z5 NWKS)

How consistent are Sungolds?

100% consistent for me. Every one I have ever grown split before it got ripe enough for me.

This year, I am growing a dehybridization effort plant called Big Sungold Select.

I have been starting Sungolds for a neighbor who likes them, but he either likes them split or unripe.

    Bookmark   June 25, 2011 at 1:32AM
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brandyray(Coastal NC/8a)

I haven't found them to be that consistent- unfortunately, because they are one of my top favorites. But, I questioned the fact that I bought them locally last yr, whereas the previous year (my first growing them) I ordered them from Burpee. They were just not as sweet last yr. This yr. I again ordered them from Burpee, but I think the stink bugs are damaging them and ruining the flavor. Brandy

    Bookmark   June 26, 2011 at 7:35AM
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I started with seed.Probably planted out too early. it was still chilly out in the mornings. Very slow to set any fruit, and now what is on has been dropping off. I'm not impressed.

    Bookmark   June 26, 2011 at 9:31AM
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kstatefan(5B - KS)

Sungold is my favorite tomato plant. Just starting to get fruit here. I have picked around 20. It should really start producing next week.

    Bookmark   June 27, 2011 at 11:23AM
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Are you all growing the hybrid, or are any of you growing one of the "stabilized" sungolds? I think Carolyn talked about de-hybridized sungolds in another thread? This is my first year with a sungold bought from a local nursery and I will definitely grow it again, but if I buy seeds next year I may go for one of the OP versions if I get good feedback on them.


    Bookmark   June 23, 2012 at 6:46PM
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I bought hybrid Sungolds from a nursery this year, and they are the most amazing tomato in my garden. Not only are they huge, but they're producing much earlier than any of my other cherry tomatoes. I love the flavor, sweet and interesting. I will definitely be buying them again next year. The other post about splitting might be due to inconsistent or excess water, I haven't had any problems with that.

    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 7:26AM
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IMHO Sungolds are a keeper - one of the tomatoes i will always have in my garden (along with Gardeners Delight). Others come and go, but SGs are here to stay ;)

    Bookmark   June 24, 2012 at 9:27AM
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