Determinate Seeds - Knowledgebase Question

Anderson, CA
Question by jdunton4
March 13, 2000
Could you please explain to me what the term "determinate" and "indeterminate" means for purchasing seeds?


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Answer from NGA
March 13, 2000

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Sure - "determinate" is a plant growth habit in which stems stop growing at a certain height and produce a flower cluster at the tip. Determinate tomatoes, for example, are short, early-fruiting, have concentrated fruit set, and do not require staking. These are the types you should grow if you want to harvest your main crop all at once for canning, drying, or freezing.

"Indeterminate" is a plant growth habit in which stems keep growing in length indefinitely. For example, indeterminate tomatoes are tall, late-fruiting, and require staking for improved yield. These are the types you should grow if you want to harvest frest tomatoes over a long season.

Hope this clarifies things for you!

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