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Best tomato for hot, dry climate...

Posted by marylandmojo zone 7--Md. (My Page) on
Sat, Jan 6, 07 at 22:17

...and your best method for growing them so they will set fruit when the temperature is above 90 degrees F.

I have a friend trying to grow tomatoes in a desert climate in Afghanistan, and I was wondering how those of you who grow tomatoes in the Southwest go about it--and what your best varieties are for a desert climate.

He tells me the temperature there is 100+ degrees F about 10 months of the year, the cooler weather (70-80 degrees F daytime, 40 degrees F, nighttime) being from December 15 through January 31.

He tried last season to grow tomatoes, and says the heat "cooked" them. I have advised him to take advantage of the cooler weather to get the plants started (he has a greenhouse) and get them in the ground early--also to mulch heavily to conserve moisture and cool the ground, a bit.

I also advised him to build a "shade structure" above the tomatoes--vertical poles with horizontal "slats" above he tomatoes to filter out sun--the horizontal slats providing half-sun, and half-shade.

Does anyone have other suggestions for growing tomatoes in such heat? Can you tell me your best varieties for growing in very hot, dry weather?

Many thanks.


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Best tomato for hot, dry climate...

I love Romas. They out produce even when everything else dies. They will slow with the higher heat, though. The "Totally Tomatoes" catalog advertises the "Porter" tomato as very heat and drought resistant, too. I intend to try these this year. I have had poor luck with Early Girl. Parks OG Whopper has done pretty well, too.

RE: Best tomato for hot, dry climate...

We grow early girl and lemon boy which is my hubbys preference for many-many years. These are also great for salsa making if you like salsa too.

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