Do cherry and 'early' tomatoes flower sooner, ripen faster, both?

2ajsmamaJuly 8, 2012

Looked again at the truss timeline (think it was a Big Boy), showed about 2 wks from bud to fruit, another 2 weeks til full-sized fruit, then about 3 weeks to blush (and another days til fully ripe so just about 60 days, not sure of the DTM for this variety).

So since "early" tomatoes are about 60 DTM (from transplant, and I'm assuming they're not typically flowering at transplant), I'm wondering if they just flower earlier than the later-season varieties, and may cut a little time off each later stage, but not much? Cherries also seem to ripen earlier - but I never made any notes, maybe they don't usually flower any earlier than later varieties like BW, but the fruit is so much smaller the time to reach full size and ripen is shorter?

I have to start making notes this year - strange year though, I've already got small fruit on the BWs and 1 BK, but flowers are just opening on my Glacier and GD cherries, while I've barely got buds on the Bloody Butcher, and nothing showing yet on the Speckled Romans! All started the same day, all transplanted within days of each other, though I do have to say that the romans, the Glaciers, the cherries and most of the BB stayed in the 3606 size 6-packs (about 2.5" square) too long, the BW and BK I potted up to 4" pots so had better roots systems, but that doesn't explain why the cherries are blossoming but the romans aren't, and the BW have lots of fruit while only 1 BK has 1. Aside from a few that were "runts" when I transplanted, and the romans which just seem a little smaller and more delicate than the cherries, they're all about the same size right now - can't tell the difference between the BK from 4" pot and GD from 2.5" now, except that I planted them in separate areas and the BK has larger flowers. In fact, I was wondering if I messed up and planted all Glacier since the BW was blooming so early, til I saw the size of the blossoms and was able to compare when the ones I knew were Glaciers (6-packs) started to flower.

Sorry so long - I'm just counting on about 45 days now for ripe BW, but wondering if I'll be picking my "early" tomatoes and cherries at that time or later? (my official first tomatoes were from some Husky Reds I picked up from a greenhouse 6-pack and potted up last month, but of all the kinds I planted in the garden, I'm wondering if the CP I got from my cousin, started 1 month before mine but transplanted the same time, is going to be the earliest! I had put those in 2-gal pots as soon as I got them, and planted DEEP when I put them in the bed.)

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carolyn137(z4/5 NY)

THe time it takes for a variety to form blossoms, set fruit and mature that fruit is determined by the genes in the DNA that are involved. That's ignoring all the other variables that play into that such as weather, soil, amendments, and on and on.

That's why we refer to early, midseason and late season varieties and since DTM's with numbers of days are sheer guesstimates for a number of reasons I prefer to give a day spread to define those early, midseason and late varieties.

If you look at any ONE variety in an SSE YEarbook you'll see a HUGE range of DTM's for a single variety just based on the many variables involved.

I would say that most early varieties are early b'c of the genes that they have, but I sure wouldn't say that most cherries are early season based on the number of cherry varieties that I've grown.

Carolyn, who also notes that the timeline I think you're looking at was done by Paul, who used to participate here a lot and uploaded all the new FAQ's that we did quite a few years ago. I think the variety he was following in that timeline was Big Beef, not Big Boy.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2012 at 8:39AM
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I hope I'm supporting Carolyn's input. I am growing Large Red Cherries, Early Wonders and Black Krim among others this year. They were all planted the same day. The Cherries are just starting to bloom. The Early Wonders have set quite a few fruit but are far from ripening. Once again, this year, the Black Krims win. I have one that's turning now.
John A

    Bookmark   July 9, 2012 at 11:14AM
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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

The simple answer to the question "Do cherry and 'early' tomatoes flower sooner, ripen faster, both?" is No.

Compared to what? An early when compared to a mid-season or late-season? That's an apples to oranges comparison. Yes the early blooms earlier. Do they ripen faster? No. Do they ripen earlier? Yes, because they set fruit earlier.

All the other variables aside (if that were possible), it would take approximately the same amount of time between fruit set and ripe for most any variety or type.


    Bookmark   July 9, 2012 at 12:19PM
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All I know is that I tend to eat cherry tomatoes sooner than many of the other tomatoes I grow. I don't have any "early" tomatoes but grow a mix of "sizes" of tomatoes. This year I've harvested 100 cherry tomatoes from 5 plants. The only other tomatoes I've harvested are 3 Jaune Flamme (1.5 oz tomatoes). None of my large tomatoes look close to being ripe, and many were placed out at the same time as the cherries.

    Bookmark   July 9, 2012 at 6:51PM
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Ugh, I don't know what happened to my reply to Dave! Thanks Dave, that's the info I was looking for. So I guess my first ripe tomatoes from the ones started in March are going to be BW! I'll keep you posted...

    Bookmark   July 9, 2012 at 8:06PM
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Dave, I'll have to dissagree on the ripening time after setting fruit issue. Cherry tomatoes will take less time from flowering to ripe fruit and because there potentially are hundreds of fruits originating from a cluster there is also the liklihood that a few more will ripen before the first of a larger fruit cluster of 5 or 6 fruits.

I've routinely planted many varieties in a high tunnel on the same day and this year 9 of the 12 cherry varieties were producing fruits 2 weeks before the first larger fruited variety was picked. Occasionally one or 2 larger fruited types might sneak an early one in but beware that it is not a development fluke like BER.

As far as BW(Brandywine)- give up on early fruits. Try Prudens Purple for consistantly earlier fruits that look and taste like BW. Prudens Purple will also out yield BW under most conditions.

    Bookmark   July 10, 2012 at 11:50PM
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The race is on! I noticed cherry tomatoes on lower trusses yesterday (they could have been there a week ago and I didn't notice the flowers til I saw flowers at the top), and I've have BW for over a week now so we'll see what ripens first. Got some Glaciers now too, Bloody Butchers are behind.

Of course the cherries have just gotten HUGE this week, and the larger branches are on the east, opposite the fence, so it's going to be fun trying to trellis them now. Time to start weaving the BB and Glacier too. My cousin's plants are 6ft tall (in his garden, not the 4 he gave me since I planted deep), he's got them in a weave but I think he planted too close together - no air circulation - looks like a jungle. I can't even tell if he has any fruit.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2012 at 9:21AM
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newyorkrita(z6b/7a LI NY)

Not that I know much but this is the first I have heard to try Prudens Purple as a subsutute for Brandwine. I like the idea of early production.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2012 at 1:11PM
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newyorkrita(z6b/7a LI NY)

Not that I know much but this is the first I have heard to try Prudens Purple as a subsutute for Brandwine. I like the idea of early production.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2012 at 1:12PM
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Why don't you compare for yourself. There is another heirloom pink I like named Pink Potato Top. You might also want to compare a few hybrids like BrandyBoy or BrandyMaster. Neither is far from BW,PP or PPP in flavor but production goes up as you deviate from Brandywine. I still plant 2 BWs every year as a testimony to how poorly they produce.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2012 at 6:24PM
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newyorkrita(z6b/7a LI NY)

I have tried all sorts of Brandywines in many years and they are just horrible for me. I grow nice plants and get almost no fruit. Now I don't mean less fruit, just almost nothing. Not worth the effort to try again on them. Looking for something else to try instead that I can have more success with.

    Bookmark   July 15, 2012 at 7:07PM
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snibb(Salt Lake City)

Cherry tomatoes certainly come up faster than the regular sized ones. I get them a month earlier

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 12:50AM
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seysonn(8a WA/HZ 1)

OLD thread.No need to go back.

I agree with "snibb".
Because of its shear smaller size, it will take cherry tomato less time to grow and ripen (from flower to fruit) . Then of course there can be EARLY and MID cherry too. That is to say, NOT all cherries will be early.

EARLY varieties WIIL be early RELATIVE to MID and LATE season varieties, growing in the same garden.

    Bookmark   March 29, 2014 at 1:30AM
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