Black Prince

RustyJuly 19, 2012

Is anyone here growing Black Prince tomatoes?

I'm interested in your experiences with it.

Last year I grew one plant of it.

And got no tomatoes at all from it.

I attributed that to the fact

That I probably got it in the ground

Way too late in the season.

So this year I bought one plant again.

Got it in the ground a bit earlier,

But the heat hit a lot earlier, too.

And again, not a single tomato.

The plant has not grown well at all,

while all the other varieties

Have made beautiful plants.

I see no sign of any disease or pests

(well, a couple of Mealy Bugs which I sprayed

With Insecticidal soap)

Yesterday I noticed it is withering completely.

(Yes, I have watered deeply, thoroughly and regularly)

Again, all the plants around it seem to be fine.

I will probably not waste time & money

On this variety again,

But I'm curious about how it does for others,

And what your opinions of it are.

Rusty

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helenh(z6 SW MO)

It grew well here a few years ago and was very productive. I didn't plant it again because I give most of my tomatoes away and people would pick a plastic red one before choosing the brickish brown Black Prince. You are in a zone far south of me though. This weather is something else; anything I planted late is not doing well. I got some in early under walls of water and those are producing. Pale Perfect Purple has been very productive.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 2:39PM
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junktruck

yeah i"ve grown it a few times / to start the tomatoes are way smaller than i like / and yeah i"ve only got like 5 or 6 per plant / they do taste good though / try cherokee purples next time way bigger tomatoes and tastes about the same and there way more productive

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 3:05PM
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barrie2m_

This is a productive black variety for me, better than many other black varieties. Today I picked 5 ripe tomatoes from one plant, a typical weekly harvest although I pick twice weekly. Your problem may be the heat but if this one doesn't produce well I'm not sure what black variety would. For me only Pol Robson Angolan and Japanese Black Trifele, other than cherry types, produce a larger number of fruit per plant.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2012 at 6:31PM
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Rusty

Thanks for your answers.

I do have one Cherokee Purple,
Had one last year, too.
Last year it produced
3 or 4 very small tomatoes.
But they sure tasted good!
No fruit at all on it
So far this year.
But the plant looks very healthy.

I don't think I will waste time & effort
On Black Prince again.

I just buy plants
Rather than starting from seed,
Because I have room for so few.
And there usually isn't much of a variety
Offered around here.

Rusty

    Bookmark   July 20, 2012 at 2:20PM
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katkeeper36

I'm a 1st year newb to tomato growing...was at a nursery this spring and saw these tomatos called "Black Prince". $2 for 2 of them ...so i said what the hell! Both of them are growing really well one about 6ft tall with 20+ golf ball sized tomatoes and the 2nd one about 5ft tall with maybe a dozen toms on it ( could be the massive - baseball sized tom the bottom ). Wonder if it got cross pollinated. I had to pick a few unripe toms off cause of blossom end rot.....added dome Tums thru watering to hopefully stave off any future BER. I never tasted one of these...hopefully soon.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 11:48AM
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helenh(z6 SW MO)

Rusty are you having more succuss with other tomatoes? I don't know where you are in zone 9 but CP should be producing more than that by the end of July. Maybe you need to find tomatoes that do well in your climate. I think B Prince is from Siberia. I thought BP was easier to grow than C Purple which rots for me in rainy weather - no problem this year. I have winter and get cabin fever. I started 9 plants of Pale Perfect Purple on top of my refrigerator under a desk lamp. The seeds are cheap try Sandhill Preservation or Sample Seed Shop. If your climate is hot, get them growing early before the severe heat starts.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 12:25PM
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SneakyP86(7B)

I grew 8 black prince plants last year and they produced very well for me. I would say I got somewhere around 40 tomatoes per plant if I remember correctly. They were on the smallish side though about the size of a plum maybe a little bigger. I would say they were what I would call a breakfast tomato since there wasn't much of an acid taste if any at all.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2012 at 7:53PM
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texasjaxon(7)

One of the best producing tomato plants I had last year was a Black Prince. Once it started producing, I was picking ripe tomatoes every day, all season long. It was my first experience with a black/brown variety, I rather enjoyed the flavor. I may try a Cherokee Purple this year.

    Bookmark   March 18, 2013 at 10:24AM
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tripleione(6b)

I have been following this thread for a while now, and I wanted to throw in my experience with "Black Prince."

So last year, my wife and I bought a Black Prince tomato plant from Lowes around the beginning of April. We planted it and then we had a late frost that almost killed it, but it managed to survive... although set back quite a while. We managed to get a few tomatoes from the plant, but it outgrew its cage... probably sprawling out to 2-3 times the size of the cage itself. It ended up sprawling out over our wet backyard lawn and developed some kind of disease which made the stems turn to mush and any newly-forming tomatoes would never ripen. We ended up throwing most of the fruit in our compost pile.

Fast forward a year... I was now trying to grow peppers and tomatoes from seed. I was trying to reduce cost inputs in any way that I could, and part of that was using a mix of my homemade compost as part of my seed starting soil. Long story short, the old Black Prince seeds we threw into the compost last year made its way into a few of my starter pots, and I grew two new Black Prince tomato plants.

I planted them outside late-April of this year, and despite cooler-than-expected temperatures, Black Prince is doing exceptionally well... growing faster and producing more blooms so far than any other variety I have planted. I put Black Prince in a 2x8 foot wide bed, using the native clay soil, and amended with generous amounts of homemade compost and composted chicken manure. Because of the great increase in temperatures over the past two weeks, Black Prince is now REALLY taking off with new growth!

I am still waiting on fruit to set, but I will update this thread as the plant continues to grow.

This first pic is about a month after germination, being grown in a small indoor greenhouse with (2) T8 15W plant bulbs.

This post was edited by tripleione on Wed, May 22, 13 at 12:34

    Bookmark   May 22, 2013 at 12:30PM
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tripleione(6b)

This pic is after two months of growth, getting hardened off outside right at the end of April 13.

    Bookmark   May 22, 2013 at 12:33PM
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tripleione(6b)

This pic is from a few days later, planted out in its new home.

    Bookmark   May 22, 2013 at 12:35PM
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tripleione(6b)

This pic is May 9... this is when I first noticed blooms on the plant.

    Bookmark   May 22, 2013 at 12:36PM
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tripleione(6b)

This pic is from yesterday, May 21. Black Prince, along with pretty much every other vegetables/greens I have planted, has been infested with aphids. I squished as many as I could, but even with this infestation, the plant just keeps growing so quickly

    Bookmark   May 22, 2013 at 12:42PM
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tripleione(6b)

Last one for now... a close-up of the blooms that will hopefully set fruit any day now!

    Bookmark   May 22, 2013 at 12:43PM
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seysonn(8a WA/HZ 1)

Tripleione,
from your past experience, why don't you, as a gardener in charge, try to control and contain the size of it?

If I were you I would refrain it by pruning constantly, to stay in size and shape I want. I have also planted a Brandywine and a Black Cream. I am going to give'm a lesson in botanic behaverism..heh. The buck stops here , by the gardener.

    Bookmark   May 23, 2013 at 3:57AM
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tripleione(6b)

I like letting it grow out of control. Other will disagree, but I am of the opinion that the plant knows how to grow itself the best without any intervention from me.

This time I won't let it sprawl all over wet grass, however.

    Bookmark   May 23, 2013 at 12:16PM
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helenh(z6 SW MO)

Get a sturdy cage - make one from hog wire or something like it. My tomatoes would not stand up in that cage either. I don't see any reason to prune the tomato, it isn't out of bounds. The cages they sell in stores are too small.

    Bookmark   May 23, 2013 at 9:58PM
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carolync1(z8/9 CA inland)

I live in a hot-summer area. I've had better luck with Nyagous than with Black Prince or Black Krim.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2013 at 2:45PM
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harveyhorses(7 Midlothian Va)

Every time you prune, you reduce the amount of tomatoes produced. If you don't want a sprawling plant, go for bush or smaller varieties. I have to prune low branches because I get no air circulation, but I love the way they grow, my sister looks forward to being able to reach out our kitchen window to pick one! Keeping them off the ground is a challenge, but I liked the Florida weave last year.
How similar in flavor are these to Black Krims?

    Bookmark   May 24, 2013 at 2:49PM
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tripleione(6b)

Here's an update on my Black Prince plant....

Since last time I posted, some of the original flowers I found had fallen off entirely. It worried me for a while, as I also gave a Black Prince to my wife and it seems to be doing the same thing... flowers shriveling up and falling off.

However, the plant must have double in size since I last update the thread. There are clusters of flowers on literally every part of the plant now. It will easily outgrow this cheap cage very soon.

I am an exclusively organic gardener, but I had a large infestation of aphids when the plants first started getting big. Once I noticed them, I started squishing all of the aphids I could find for a few days in a row. I am happy to report that the beneficial insects have really taken over the job of protecting my plants at this point. I have seen numerous ladybugs, hover flies, praying mantis, daddy long legs, and other kinds of spiders all making their home in the shady inner areas of the tomato plants, especially Black Prince (assuming because it is so big).

This is a picture of Black Prince, along with my two other varieties of tomato plant. It's hard to distinguish where one plant ends and another starts, especially in the pictures. The majority of Black Prince is in the center of the pic.

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 11:52AM
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tripleione(6b)

After poking around a bit today, I found this little one starting to grow. First homegrown tomato of the season!

    Bookmark   June 5, 2013 at 11:54AM
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bobincentralMA

Yes, last year was the first year trying them. Very productive plant, they split a bunch, strong plant and ... not bad, good overall. However, being about a C+/B- is ok but I'm focusing on newer ones to replace them. You can't go wrong so no worries if you got em in the ground.

    Bookmark   June 14, 2013 at 10:50PM
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nicgar

Hi,
Am trying to grow Black Prince for the first time this year. The plant has grown well, flowered, and already produced three tomatoes. My problem is that once the fruit started growing, the leaves above where the fruit are growing have become withered looking - almost as if the fruit is sucking the life out of the new growth. The plant continues to flower, but no additional tomatoes have grown. I added organic plant food to the garden this week, thinking maybe the plant needed an extra boost of nutrients. Any suggestions? Thanks!

    Bookmark   June 20, 2013 at 7:16PM
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