High Yielding Beefsteaks

donnamarienjJune 30, 2013

During today’s rainstorm, I took a break from weeding and browsed through Carolyn’s book. In her book Carolyn labeled about a dozen beefsteaks as having a high yield. These tomatoes are listed below and I’d like your opinions if you have grown them. While I know that yield and taste will vary from garden to garden, I would still like to hear whether you liked the tomatoes listed below and how they fared in your garden. While I am certain there are numerous other beefsteaks that may be considered as having a high yield, right now I am only interested in the ones listed below. My first interest is the yield, and the second is the taste. So if you have grown these tomatoes, I would love and welcome your feedback.

Andrew Rahart’s Jumbo Red
Chris Ukrainian
Crnkovic Yugoslavian
Dr. Lyle
Germaid Red
German Head
Omar’s Lebanese
Sandul Moldovan

Thank you.


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carolyn137(z4/5 NY)

Donnamarie, you can add Red Penna, Chapman, Aker's West Virginia, Kukla's Portuguese Beefsteak and many more to that high yield list as grown by me where I live and I think many others would agree based on feedback.

Carolyn, whose primary interest is taste , not yield, but who understands that some others put yield first

    Bookmark   July 1, 2013 at 3:19AM
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Thanks, Carolyn, I was hoping you would add more to the list. I, too, grow mainly for taste. However, this list is not for me. I grow for others as well, and they do not have the patience for a plant like Sudduth or some other low yielding, great tasting variety. Of what you mentioned in the book and above, which one tastes the best? Again, I know that taste is subjective and I know some tomatoes are tangy and some are sweet, and I know soil conditions and weather affect the taste. But in general?

How did I miss Aker's? I went thru your book page by page (it is now, after all of these years, just about falling apart). Oh, well, it must be my age.


    Bookmark   July 1, 2013 at 7:57AM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

JMO on the production on the ones on your list that I have grown.

Andrew Rahart’s Jumbo Red - good
Crnkovic Yugoslavian - fair
Cuostralee - good
Omar’s Lebanese - very good
Soldacki - fair
Zogola - good
Chapman - excellent
Aker's West Virginia - excellent

Taste - Aker's, Chapman, Omar's all very good. Nothing special in the rest IMO. Not that they are NOT good, they are, just nothing special.


    Bookmark   July 1, 2013 at 12:11PM
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It does seem Crnkovic Yugoslavian is just a fair yielding plant for all members of our gardening club- me as well.

But in contrast to Dave in AR, my zone 5b as grown in the past is: Cuostralee excellent yields, and Akers's WV is just fair, or below avg actually.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2013 at 1:06AM
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carolyn137(z4/5 NY)

There will always be differences in performance/taste depending on the year when grown and the geographic location where grown.

I think all of us know that Donnamarie, including you.(smile)

Carolyn, who does know Donnamarie personally

    Bookmark   July 2, 2013 at 7:54AM
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harryshoe zone6 eastern Pennsylvania

WOW! This Forum continues to impress me. I've been growing tomatoes for fifty years and have no familiarity with any on Donna's list beyond what I have read here in the last week. Quite a world out there beyond the local nursery.

Are these seeds available? Sources please?



    Bookmark   July 2, 2013 at 10:48AM
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Harry, I go right to Tatiana's site for info on seed availability.

And thanks everyone for your help. I will do some research on what was suggested above and get the seeds for 2014.


    Bookmark   July 2, 2013 at 11:23AM
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LOL, Harry. Yep, there's a whole new world of fabulous tastes out there. I can send you some seeds (unfortunately, for none of above, but of great tomatoes) in the Fall if you're interested. You should be able to contact me thru GW.

    Bookmark   July 2, 2013 at 11:33AM
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It's not on your list, but the highest producing beefsteak I've ever trialed is Kellogg's Breakfast. There is also a potato leaf version of Kellogg's Breakfast known as KBX.


    Bookmark   July 2, 2013 at 2:39PM
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Gary, KB is my all time fave!!! It is one I NEVER give away to neighbors. I don't care how many plants I have, I'll keep them all! KBX is not one I am familiar with, although I do have seed. How does it fare in your garden to KB?


    Bookmark   July 2, 2013 at 7:47PM
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fcivish(Zone 6 Utah)

There are many many many websites out there that sell good tomato seeds or lots of heirloom tomato seeds.

First, if you are looking for heirlooms, stay away from most seed companies that also put out large catalogs with lots and lots of other Vegetables and gardening things. Those companies (Burpee is just one example) have excellent products, but don't specialize in heirloom tomatoes, so their selection of heirlooms is often not the best and is generally very limited.

I personally like TomatoGrowers.com out of Tampa, Florida. Really broad selection, great availability for seeds. I have also been to Tatiana's website, where they have excellent information, and I have probably ordered seeds from many dozens of heirloom tomato seed suppliers, over the years.

Look for websites that advertise heirloom tomato seeds, and try to figure out how many types they have, and the range of varieties they carry. Most companies that specialize in Heirloom tomato seeds might also sell peppers, melons or a few other heirloom vegetables, but their emphasis should be mostly on tomatoes. Compare sites. Almost any place that really takes the time and effort to specialize in heirloom tomatoes, and that has a good variety, can be trusted, in my experience.

Lastly, many many many readers of this board will do seed exchanges with you, for the price of a few envelopes and postage stamps. I buy little coin envelopes for my seed exchanges. Some people use small plastic envelopes or paper tubes or even make their own. Most people will include at least 10 seeds in their exchange. I generally put about as much as you get from a commercial source (I expect this is 25 to 50 seeds) since, once you start harvesting your own seeds, consistently, you will always always have more seeds than you could ever possibly use. But, talk with whoever you exchange with, and see how many seeds they want.

If you want to exchange seeds, you can harvest some from your own tomatoes and offer them. Some people might be interested even if what you have is the F2 (second generation) seed from commercial hybrids. DO tell people exactly what type of seeds you have, and whether they are F2, F3, etc. Or you can buy some commercial seeds, for popular varieties, like Sungold, and offer them. Or you can just ask people if anyone will send you seed for free. As I said, most people who save seeds have far more than they will every use. The protocol in such cases is generally to send them a self addressed stamped envelope, so they can send you seeds without incurring extra expense on their end.

I personally don't often exchange seeds any more, since I don't usually need any. I have a ton of backlog with hundreds and hundreds of varieties, not counting the seemingly endless number of tomato strains and varieties that I am trying to breed myself. But, after taking a few years off from the boards, I might be ready to start sending out seeds from some of those tomatoes that I have been breeding, and some of the new strains I am trying to develop. I guess we'll see how they produce, and look, and taste this year.

Storing seeds so they maintain their vitality is often a question. They do lose the ability to germinate, over time. They should be in a cool dry place, preferably in a sealed, waterproof plastic bag. I just store mine at room temperature, in my air conditioned house, and I live in a very dry climate. My seeds seem to maintain full potency for at least 12 to 15 years or so. Other people store theirs in a drawer in their refrigerator.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2013 at 10:49AM
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carolyn137(z4/5 NY)

Just noting that TGS is in Fort Myers, Fl, not Tampa, for whatever that's worth.LOL

I used to d a Wrong vareties thread here at GW for several years and what was found is that some seed companies are much better than others, and those ratings still hold today, that is for purity of seed.
Small family owned places may produce their own seed, or buy whole sale off the shelf, or subcontract out and some do a combo of those things.

The wrong varieties threads also indicated that the most wrong varieties came from traded seed and that's so today as well. I NEVER trade seeds for two reasons.

First, bc/ of the high rate of wrong seeds.

Second, b'c I think everyone shuld be supporting the smaller family run sites where tomatoes and a bit more are the specialty. They help to preserv varieties and in these economic times they need the monetary suppor tof others.

The only time I exchange seeds is if someone sends me an heirloom variety , or close to it, that has not been distributed, and then I offer several varieties as thanks. And there afre several who post here who know all about that.

Finally, there is No commercial CO that has not sent out wrong seeds, whether OP or Hybrid seeds. The reasons are many

Just a few thoughts for now.


    Bookmark   July 3, 2013 at 11:10AM
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KBX, for me, has identical tasting fruit. Production may be slightly lower than KB, but they both are far more productive than anything else, in my garden.
I've heard that KB gets "crud" when started indoors under growlights. I don't use growlights, so I wouldn't know. Those that get crud with KB, say that KBX doesn't get crud.

KBX is also less prone to sunscald.


    Bookmark   July 3, 2013 at 2:24PM
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I grew Chapman and Omars last yr and liked Chapman the best. I like Estlers Mortgage Lifter better than either one. I have clusters of softball size EML right now even tho too much rain in my red clay often bodes bad. They are truly wonderful for me.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2013 at 4:32PM
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Bigpinks - I tried Mortgage Lifter (maybe not Estlers) last year for the first time and all of the plants were awful. In general, I give a certain variety several tries before I give up. This year I am not growing them as I am still upset about last year - too fresh in my mind. But I will definately try them again, as I hear a lot of good reviews about them. I get upset when I can't grow a certain tomato. It's a "thing" with me. I just can't understand why I can grow tomato A, B, and C, and while A and B are fabulous, C will never be a good plant. Its a thread I started on another forum and need not be discussed again here. It's just so annoying to me. But ML was one of them last year and Mule Team was another. I wanted so much to like them. Thanks for the input.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2013 at 11:25PM
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I guess you noticed I said my garden is clay soil. They may never do good for you but make no mistake....al Mortgage Lifters are not Estlers.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2013 at 7:39AM
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Carolyn, what is the name of the tomato pictured opposite the green page in the very front of your book? It is fuzzy (the tomato, not the pic). I note that you talk about angora foliage in the book, but I don't see the name of that one pictured. It must be there, but I am missing it and I'm getting cranky. (too hot, too humid = too cranky).



    Bookmark   July 4, 2013 at 10:13PM
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