Most productive, most disease resistant tomato

sli74November 22, 2011

I had a lot of luck this year (our first garden in our first home) with growing tomatoes for a green tomato chutney. Unfortunately, we don't know what we planted. I use the tomatoes while they are still green and raw. I have to bake the liquid out of the chopped tomatoes and then make the chutney from the resultant paste. Our family consumes the chutney like it is a side dish. We had 8 plants and got 5-6 harvests filling a 5 gallon bucket each time and we would like a repeat next year. We did get some wilting that was moderate to severe but our plants produced tomatoes from June to September. I know there are hundreds of tomato varieties so I am looking for suggestions of varieties that will allow us a repeat of this growing season minus the disease.

So, if you had to choose a tomato that will be used green and want the best disease resistance with HUGE yields, what would you recommend?

Thanks everyone.

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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Depends on what disease you are talking about. Check out Rutgers and look into Better Boy, Celebrity, Jetsetter, Big Beef and the BHN group.


    Bookmark   November 22, 2011 at 11:50AM
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Thanks Dave. We had our leaves turn black and look wilted. It started early and continued to get worse all through the season. But, we still had tons of tomatoes, so I am guessing whatever we planted had disease tolerance?

    Bookmark   November 22, 2011 at 1:50PM
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carolyn137(z4/5 NY)

I agree that it's important to know what disease(s) were the problem. I see you're in a 6b area but could you give us at least a hint of where that 6b ares is? And I ask b'c different diseases are present in different area of the US.

And the reason I ask b'c I know of only one disease that will turn the foliage all BLACK and that's Late Blight ( P. infestans) and if that were the case with all your foliage turning black then that disease would be lethal in a week or two and the plants would be a stinking mass of tissue.

Once it's known what diseases are in your area I think it would be easier to help. But hybrid or OP there's NO variety that is completely tolerant of foliage diseases.

And foliage diseases don't cause wilting, but systemic ones do, those are diseases that are in the soil already, either by planting purchased plants where the soil carried the bad guys into the garden, well, thats the usual way.

So were all the leaves black, and before that did you see any spots starting to appear on the green leaves and if so could you describe them as to color and size and shape?

Again, hard to help without knowing what diseases. But moderate to severe wilting, when the plants had enough water, speaks to me of a systemic disease.

Have you looked at any disease sites to try and ID what the problem might be? Last I knew in the Tomato Pest and Disease Forum, link at the top of this first page, there was a PROBLEM Solver there that listed several disease sites. Two that I like best are the TAMU site and the Cornell site.

Hope that helps.


    Bookmark   November 22, 2011 at 8:46PM
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Hi Carolyn,

I live in NJ and the plants started wilting sometime in July and initially, it was just 2 of the plants but eventually all of them had black dead foliage on between 30 and 80 percent of the plant. However, the plants still continued to produce tomatoes well into September. We have 2 areas in the garden, the tomatoes in the most productive area had the worst black foliage, the tomatoes in the other area produced only a quarter as many tomatoes but were healthy until the end. I will check out those sites to try and identify the disease. When we pulled the plants, we did notice that the stems had ugly brown bumps near the soil. Maybe that will give a hint as to the disease. The black wilted foliage was pretty gross looking but didn't affect the ability of the tomatoes to grow and didn't affect the tomatoes themselves. Thanks for your input.

    Bookmark   November 22, 2011 at 9:29PM
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carolyn137(z4/5 NY)

THe bumps near the soil line are called adventitous roots and are quite normal.

I'm still struggling with the black foliage comment b/c if it were Late BLight ( P. infestans) the tomatoes would also be affected with large areas of black that go along with that disease and would make the fruits useless. And as I said, Late Blight would have killed the plants within a week or two.

You might want to check out Grey Mold as well when you look at some of those disease sites b'c it can mimic Late Blight as to foliage symptoms.


    Bookmark   November 24, 2011 at 3:27AM
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I know I'm sort of in the same boat. I have a recurring disease in my soil that affects my tomatoes (and my father in laws as well). I'm sure it came from him and conversely from him always buying 'better boy' plants from a nursery. I've tentatively identified it as fusarium wilt- but I don't know what race it is. I've been "hobby hybridizing" tomatoes for the last few years and it gives me something to work for as far as "selecting" against. I know 'better boy' is susceptible to it even though it is supposed to be race 1 resistant. I had some seedlings of 'bush goliath' x 'jetstar' (that were highly resistant) which I crossed with 'italian tree' (which was highly susceptible). The seedlings of that were highly susceptible as well. Hoping that it's a single recessive gene, I'm looking forward to growing out the F2 from that cross this year and hopefully, maybe, 25% of the seedlings should be resistant again. I have a feeling that varieties touted as resistant to fusarium show varying grades of resistance. In this search for a highly resistant variety in my growing conditions, I've selected several new varieties to try out this year. 'Charger', 'Sophya', 'Floralina', and 'solar fire' (among others). Whichever one of these shows the best resistance I will probable use to cross with the f2 from my hybrid.

    Bookmark   November 26, 2011 at 3:00PM
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Defiant F1 at Johnny's.

    Bookmark   November 26, 2011 at 7:39PM
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The best tomato for your purpose is probably Big Beef. As for the disease you describe, it sounds like a combination of Early Blight and Septoria.


    Bookmark   November 26, 2011 at 11:12PM
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Could the 'black' leaves be a result mildew from honeydew from aphid excretions? Have you tried rubbing the leaves between your fingers to see it it comes off?

    Bookmark   November 27, 2011 at 4:52PM
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Become a fan of Actinovate--great stuff! Makes short work of blights & wilts.

    Bookmark   December 3, 2011 at 7:11AM
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I'm also a true believer in Avtinovate. I have been using it for three years and will do so next year. I order it from the internet; sure it's a bit pricey, but on the other hand it
only costs about the same as 1 case of beer and takes care of the whole year (which 1 case of beer certainly will not!).

    Bookmark   December 7, 2011 at 11:30AM
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Hello guys! I'm from Russia, first time here. Very interested of tomato. Wish to chat with you.

    Bookmark   December 10, 2011 at 7:46AM
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