Heat Tolerant Tomato Varieties

Kevinitis(5)July 3, 2012

So with all these record setting temps and droughts, which varieties do you know of, or have growing this year that sets fruit well in high temps? Likewise, which tomato varieties are having trouble setting fruit this year for everyone?

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opal52(z7b GA)

Are there ANY slicing tomato varieties that will take the high temps we have seen over the past week? We saw 100, 105, 106,106, 97 and today is supposed to be 98 but have to add misery with a heat index because the humidity is back. I know Cherokee Red and Jet Star can't handle it. Mine were full of fruit, much of which I had to discard this morning because of severe sun bun or sun scald (I didn't know that could even happen to tomatoes), and the Cherokee Reds that were almost ripe enough to pick appear to have cooked on the vines. I planted grape tomato seeds from Victory Seeds this year. They seem happy enough in the heat so far and have fresh blossoms on them. No damage to the fruit that I can see. Lycopersicon esculentum "Red Grape" They are very tasty also.

    Bookmark   July 3, 2012 at 2:08PM
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dickiefickle(5B Dousman,Wi.)

There comes a temperature when nothing will grow .

    Bookmark   July 4, 2012 at 5:34AM
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Opal its hot here in the midwest also. I've got a few plants that are still putting on some fruit despite the 100 degree heat for the last 8 days. My branywine red,eva purple ball, neves azerian and my friends gary osena are still setting fruit. Not alot but a couple on each truss. I hope this helps
ps. Most cherrys type do well in the heat. My sungold, black cherry and purple haze keep setting fruit like it is spring outside.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2012 at 12:05PM
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There are different aspects to heat tolerance: pollen dessication and setting of fruit, sun scald, not getting blossom end rot, and having strong roots that will drive deep into the ground all come to mind. I wonder if all of those traits are represented by different genes, which is why it is hard to find a tomato with all of them.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2012 at 2:08PM
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None of those "traits" (with the exception of some varieties being more susceptible to BER) on their own are really gene related.

Heat tolerance can be gene related, but growing conditions, weather, soil, etc. also can help the tolerance or cancel it out.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2012 at 3:20PM
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The two varieties I've seen that seem to handle the brutal heat and heavy direct sunlight better than others are Super Sioux and Cold Set.
You can help any varieties through the heat though, by not pruning the suckers, using a light colored mulch (grass clippings are great) that doesn't absorb as much sunlight, and considering a shade screen.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2012 at 7:12PM
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I'm not a great tomato grower, but here in MD we've had those 100+ deg temps and I would agree with the previous poster, my Sungold plant is still going crazy with fruit!

On the flip side, my Better Boys are suffering. They've been trying to ripen a handful of fruit for well over a week. I haven't gotten any ripe fruit off those plants yet this season!

    Bookmark   July 10, 2012 at 10:33PM
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tdscpa(z5 NWKS)

I'm in my 2nd year of ridiculous heat during tomato growing season.

Last year only about 25% of my tomatoes produced any fruit. It was super-hot all summer, and we had a hailstorm that stripped all my plants of tomatoes, and most leaves in the middle of August.

My best producers were cherries, and other round tomatoes, including Prue, Burgundy Traveler, and Thessaloniki.

I grow mostly beef-steak tomatoes. Black ones did fairly well after the hail. Mule Team was the only red beef-steak to produce well. No yellow beef-steak produced a tomato.

This year, the only usable tomatoes so far are from container tomatoes I started early in my greenhouse that I moved outside about our normal planting time. Of those planted in garden soil, only a few cherries and a Prue tomato have set on fruit.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2012 at 3:00AM
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jrslick (North Central Kansas, Zone 5B)

Florida 91 does well in the heat. It has what they call a "Heat Set" gene bred into it. There are others, but this is them most common one. I have over 170 of these plants and they are blooming, setting and I will have a good harvest. Growing for Farmers Markets, I need tomatoes early and later in the year. I try to not have many when most home gardeners are harvesting theirs. This way I am not am not wasting mine and suffering from low prices. The problem it you need a tomato that will set fruit in July and August to harvest in August and September.

Here is a row that were planting May 1. They are just starting to produce.

My next planting planted on July 7th. They have over 2 dozen tomatoes set on.

Here is my Hard luck June planting. They got planted, endured wind, pouring rain (last rain we have gotten) and weeks of over 100 degrees. They are blooming and setting. I also just got them caged.

Here was the final harvest at Thanksgiving last year from Florida 91's.


    Bookmark   July 16, 2012 at 1:00PM
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