Vegetables and Fruit forum: Dwarf Tomato Project - who grows them?

Page 1 of 5 • 1 2 3 4 5
Views: 2495, Replies: 95 » Jump to the end
Name: Kayleigh
(Zone 5a)
Cat Lover Seed Starter Canning and food preservation Plays in the sandbox Lilies Hummingbirder
Irises Daylilies Cut Flowers Butterflies Region: Indiana Vegetable Grower
Image
HoosierHarvester
Jan 7, 2016 10:08 AM CST
So I've been reading up in the heirloom and hybrid tomato threads and came upon the dwarf tomato, and went to read further about it at Victory Seeds.

Way way back [my first attempt at gardening without a garden, and never yet then having my own garden] I grew a variety called 'Patio Tomato' on my front patio in large (probably 2 to 3 gallon flower pots) and I really enjoyed them and the small tomatoes produced.

Have you grown any of the new dwarf tomatoes, and if so which ones, and how do you like them?

I noticed that everyone that I selected to look at at Victory Seeds were all determinate plants. I didn't however, look at every single one. Are any of these dwarf varieties indeterminate?

Not that I want to grow them for myself (I mostly want very productive and sauce and salsa types), but I think that there would be a lot of farmer's market customers who would love to have one or two of the plants to grow on their patio. And I also would enjoy testing a few varieties.

Opinions are greatly welcome . . . thank you.
Name: Paul Fish
Brownville, Nebraska (Zone 5b)
Image
PaulF
Jan 9, 2016 11:22 AM CST
If you have seen the Dwarf Project through Victory Seeds, that project involves hundreds of varieties being developed by hundreds of growers mostly who visit the tomato forum site Tomatoville. Craig L. in the northern hemisphere and Patrina in the southern hemisphere are the moderators. It has been several years of trial and retrial to get dwarf sized plants with full sized fruit that tastes good. All varieties developed so far have been indeterminate. I have personally been involved with at least twelve of the new releases of dwarfs in the Project at some stage.

As with all tomatoes, they thrive when being planted directly in the soil but will also do well in containers. My opinion is that even the dwarfs require at least a 5 gallon pot. As a side note, the best salsa and sauce we have ever made came not from traditional "sauce and salsa" style tomatoes but from regular heirloom/OP varieties. So much more flavor.

Also selling the International Dwarf Project tomatoes besides Victory Seeds are The Sample Seed Shop, Tatiana's Tomatobase and Sand Hill Preservation. Victory has a very good presentation of those varieties released to date with more coming My personal favorites are Tasmanian Chocolate and Wild Fred.
Name: Reid
North Branch, MN (Zone 4b)
Garden Ideas: Master Level Celebrating Gardening: 2015
Image
Anderwood
Jan 9, 2016 5:35 PM CST
I just heard about this on awaytogarden.com

Thry would be fun to try! There a
Is a great story on them on that sight.
Name: BetNC
Hendersonville, NC (Zone 7a)
Annuals Seed Starter Tomato Heads Hellebores Gardens in Buckets Plant and/or Seed Trader
Image
BetNC
Jan 12, 2016 3:07 PM CST
The only place I can grow vegies in general and tomatoes specifically is in containers on my patio. Last year, I had my first Tomato Jungle (8 plants, each a different variety. . in Earthboxes, an 18" container and three 6-gal shop buckets).

Thumb of 2016-01-12/BetNC/314577

Then I discovered dwarves!!

This year, I will have another Tomato Jungle, with two dwarves: Mano and Cyril's Choice, both started from seed sent to me by a new friend at Tomatoville. According to his taste reviews, both are abundant producers, tasty and have nicely thin skins (the better for eating, m'dear!). I'm looking forward to growing them this year!
Drooling nodding

Name: Kayleigh
(Zone 5a)
Cat Lover Seed Starter Canning and food preservation Plays in the sandbox Lilies Hummingbirder
Irises Daylilies Cut Flowers Butterflies Region: Indiana Vegetable Grower
Image
HoosierHarvester
Jan 12, 2016 3:27 PM CST
Wow @BetNc , your tomatoes looked great. Perhaps for testing purposes I will grow mine in the buckets. I just don't have a drill to put holes in the bucket. Not sure how I can do that. Lowes has 5-gallon buckets for $3 each, and that's lots cheaper that most pots/containers that size.

I'm not sure which varieties I'm going to go with. But hopefully will can all post later this year after tomato season and testing has been had, etc. to let everyone know how they do. Then perhaps we all can do some seed swapping to test different ones.
Name: BetNC
Hendersonville, NC (Zone 7a)
Annuals Seed Starter Tomato Heads Hellebores Gardens in Buckets Plant and/or Seed Trader
Image
BetNC
Jan 12, 2016 4:39 PM CST
@HoosierHarvester no drill? no problem!!

Hammer and nail works, too. or a big rock and a hole punch. or a brick and a screwdriver.

A pounder thingie and something that can be pounded, easiest with a pointy-end! Rolling on the floor laughing
Name: Kayleigh
(Zone 5a)
Cat Lover Seed Starter Canning and food preservation Plays in the sandbox Lilies Hummingbirder
Irises Daylilies Cut Flowers Butterflies Region: Indiana Vegetable Grower
Image
HoosierHarvester
Jan 12, 2016 5:19 PM CST
Thank you . . . good ideas; I think I have some of those things.
Name: Linda
Carmel, IN (Zone 5a)
Forum moderator I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Charter ATP Member Region: Indiana Dog Lover Container Gardener
Seed Starter Herbs Vegetable Grower Cut Flowers Butterflies Birds
Image
mom2goldens
Jan 13, 2016 7:52 PM CST
I grew 3 different types last year, and this year I've noticed that there are many more varieties available. Check out the selection that Remy has at Sampleseeds.com

I found that the plants were very healthy, bushy and produced pretty well. The thing I was less impressed with was the taste of the tomatoes. I know that is very subjective, and may have been influenced by our growing conditions last year. I wouldn't hestitate to try them again.

I grow all of my tomatoes in Earthboxes. The dwarf tomatoes all grew from 2-3' in height, but were very dense/bushy. They got so heavy that my supports were all leaning over! No disease problems noted; production was good-very good. I grew: Sweet Adelaide, Chocolate Champion and one other that is escaping me right now.
Name: Kayleigh
(Zone 5a)
Cat Lover Seed Starter Canning and food preservation Plays in the sandbox Lilies Hummingbirder
Irises Daylilies Cut Flowers Butterflies Region: Indiana Vegetable Grower
Image
HoosierHarvester
Jan 13, 2016 8:27 PM CST
Thank you @mom2goldens Linda, for posting. I haven't placed an order yet - I plan to review this thread again before doing so. I certainly appreciate any input from those who have already tested any.

I think many people at farmer's markets are frustrated with $3 per pound and higher for tomatoes. Some with plenty of money don't much care, but I think others would love to be able to grow a few of their own . . . those who have limited space.
Name: BetNC
Hendersonville, NC (Zone 7a)
Annuals Seed Starter Tomato Heads Hellebores Gardens in Buckets Plant and/or Seed Trader
Image
BetNC
Jan 13, 2016 11:25 PM CST
Aside fromthe cost, vine-ripened tomatoes taste like, , , tomatoes!!!

@HoosierHarvester do you grow your tomatoes from seed or order seedlings? When I ordered tomato seed Christmas evening (I start my seed 8 weeksbefore the last frost, so start Feb 28??? - note to self...re=check your double-check of that date!) one of the varieties I wanted was already sold out.
Name: Kayleigh
(Zone 5a)
Cat Lover Seed Starter Canning and food preservation Plays in the sandbox Lilies Hummingbirder
Irises Daylilies Cut Flowers Butterflies Region: Indiana Vegetable Grower
Image
HoosierHarvester
Jan 14, 2016 8:14 AM CST
@BetNc , I start some of mine from seeds (others I purchase plants). [Probably will be starting more from seed this year than usual.] I find mine get too leggy if I start 8 weeks early, so I only start 6 weeks early. I run shop lights (just standard florescent). This year I'd actually like to start some later than normal so that I would have tomatoes in late September and October, when most of the vines here are usually pretty much finished. Would be nice to have some, more-or-less, just starting.
Name: BetNC
Hendersonville, NC (Zone 7a)
Annuals Seed Starter Tomato Heads Hellebores Gardens in Buckets Plant and/or Seed Trader
Image
BetNC
Jan 14, 2016 9:20 AM CST
I have shop light fixtures and use the Daylight flourescent bulbs. . . plus, I guess I baby my seedlings as I harden them off so that they spend their last 2 weeks outside from whenever I get up until the sun goes down!! Smiling

By transplanting time, they look like little foot-or-so trees! nodding

Before my PC crashed, I had pics of my mini-trees sunbathing; my backup failed to save alll of my camera pictures and my music. Angry I've changed my backup provider! Fortunately, most of my music library was my CDs and easily recovered manually.
Name: Kayleigh
(Zone 5a)
Cat Lover Seed Starter Canning and food preservation Plays in the sandbox Lilies Hummingbirder
Irises Daylilies Cut Flowers Butterflies Region: Indiana Vegetable Grower
Image
HoosierHarvester
Jan 14, 2016 5:03 PM CST
@mom2goldens does the http://www.sampleseeds.com/ have a listing that separates what they have just of the dwarf tomato project? I didn't see it if they did. Which three did you grow . . . would you tell us your thoughts about them? please Smiling

I checked the other sites, thank you @PaulF , but they tended to be less easy to navigate. I have made some choices at Victory Seeds, but may narrow it down. Wanted to try some different lettuce varieties, so it was nice that I found the ones I wanted there.

So if anyone would like to swap, already having any of these varieties, or planning on ordering some, let me know by tree-mail.

Dwarf Tomato Project Tomatoes:
Boronia
Golden Gypsy
Mahogany
Sturt Desert Pea
Sweet Scarlet Dwarf
Sweet Sue
Wild Fred (based on recommend)
(I'd like to whittle my list down to 6)

Lettuce:
Little Gem Butterhead
Buttercrunch Bibb
Green Ice
Winter Density Bibb

Name: Linda
Carmel, IN (Zone 5a)
Forum moderator I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Charter ATP Member Region: Indiana Dog Lover Container Gardener
Seed Starter Herbs Vegetable Grower Cut Flowers Butterflies Birds
Image
mom2goldens
Jan 14, 2016 5:36 PM CST
Unfortunately, Sampleseeds does not have a separate listing for their dwarf tomatoes, but I was really pretty impressed at the selection Remy had this year--considerably more from last year.

I grew Chocolate Champion, Sweet Adelaide, and Dwarf Golden Heart. All of the plants were beautiful--healthy and bushy with no noted disease issues. However, I wasn't overly impressed with the taste of any of them. I know taste is subjective so won't dwell on this. I was very surprised by the size of the tomatoes, though, on a small plant. The Sweet Adelaide grew some fairly large tomatoes; the Golden Heart and Chocolate Champion had smaller fruit, but I think it was supposed to be.

Name: Kayleigh
(Zone 5a)
Cat Lover Seed Starter Canning and food preservation Plays in the sandbox Lilies Hummingbirder
Irises Daylilies Cut Flowers Butterflies Region: Indiana Vegetable Grower
Image
HoosierHarvester
Jan 14, 2016 6:41 PM CST
Thanks Linda. Based on the breeding, you'd think they would have fairly good flavor. One I chose I guess would be like sib to Sweet Adelaide I think, or perhaps Chocolate Champion. I know a couple of my choices was based on the fact that I like Cherokee Purple. Then, after that, for customer sake purchasing plants, I thought standard red or pink would be best, along with standard yellow or orange. Then at Victory seeds it was nice with the photos because I like looking at the cut portion of a tomato. I liked seeing how meaty it looked, or not.
Name: Linda
Carmel, IN (Zone 5a)
Forum moderator I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Charter ATP Member Region: Indiana Dog Lover Container Gardener
Seed Starter Herbs Vegetable Grower Cut Flowers Butterflies Birds
Image
mom2goldens
Jan 14, 2016 7:18 PM CST
It's funny....I grew these last year to sell at our Master Gardener Plant sale. Over the years, we've had more and more people asking for tomatoes that could grow in smaller spaces or containers. Thought the dwarf plants would be perfect, but we barely sold any of what we grew. Not sure if people were just unsure about "dwarf" thinking the fruit would be small? We did have them advertised as good for containers and small spaces. Maybe the names weren't familiar?

I was thrilled to try them, but forgot to order any new ones this year, and I've already received my orders. Maybe next year I'll try a few new dwarf varieties. I would certainly love to find some that I love.
Name: Kayleigh
(Zone 5a)
Cat Lover Seed Starter Canning and food preservation Plays in the sandbox Lilies Hummingbirder
Irises Daylilies Cut Flowers Butterflies Region: Indiana Vegetable Grower
Image
HoosierHarvester
Jan 14, 2016 7:27 PM CST
Linda, so you didn't save any seeds from the 3 your grew? I've told myself several times to remember to get some organza bags, or check if there is such a thing as organza material that one could cut and make their own bags, because I definitely want to collect seeds from the ones I grow. And then hopefully swap and get to try others for less expense.

I don't know how a plant sale will go. But I asked Victory Seeds if I could use their photos. Hopefull I can make up a sheet for each variety plant I sell including a photo of the tomato. But sometimes you never know how things will go at a sale, whatever kind it be.
Name: Linda
Carmel, IN (Zone 5a)
Forum moderator I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Charter ATP Member Region: Indiana Dog Lover Container Gardener
Seed Starter Herbs Vegetable Grower Cut Flowers Butterflies Birds
Image
mom2goldens
Jan 14, 2016 8:09 PM CST
@Hoosierharvester: no, I did not save seeds. I just don't have the time to do so, and I never even bothered to look to see if these were all OP. I grow in a very tight space, so if they are not OP, saving seeds is just too much effort for my small garden.

Having photos of the tomatoes is a huge help--we compile a listing of all of ours at the plant sale, along with photos and descriptions.
Name: Kayleigh
(Zone 5a)
Cat Lover Seed Starter Canning and food preservation Plays in the sandbox Lilies Hummingbirder
Irises Daylilies Cut Flowers Butterflies Region: Indiana Vegetable Grower
Image
HoosierHarvester
Jan 14, 2016 8:14 PM CST
As far as I understood from all the reading I have done with regard to the Dwarf Tomato Project is that they are all OP varieties. They also encourage people to make their own cross to arrive at new dwarf varieties. I thought that would be fun too as I've never tried hybridizing a tomato. Maybe more difficult than fun though. Shrug!
Name: Paul Fish
Brownville, Nebraska (Zone 5b)
Image
PaulF
Jan 16, 2016 9:52 AM CST
I received my assignment this week for further development in the Dwarf Project: Dwarf Firebird Sweet and Emmy. Firebird Sweet is nearing completion and may be on the dwarf release list soon. Emmy has a way to go but sounds promising.

Remy )Sample Seeds) is a great person to deal with and sells only the best, Tania (Tatianna's Database) has been a godsend for her database work and her excellent seeds and Glenn Drowns at Sand Hill Preservation has been a pioneer at the seed selling game and has saved many of the world's seed varieties...and is very inexpensive at that. Highest recommendations for these three not only for dwarfs, but for anything they sell. Customer service is the best.

Page 1 of 5 • 1 2 3 4 5

« Garden.org Homepage
« Back to the top
« Forums List
« Vegetables and Fruit forum
You must first create a username and login before you can reply to this thread.

Today's site banner is by Baja_Costero and is called "Agave"