Vegetables and Fruit forum: year end tomato report

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Name: Paul Fish
Brownville, Nebraska (Zone 5b)
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PaulF
Nov 1, 2016 3:06 PM CST
It was a beautiful November 1 afternoon. There were only a few tomatoes left on the vines so this day was chosen to pull out all the remaining plants, do the math and write a year end report. This is the eleventh year since retiring to Nebraska from Iowa where the numbers would have been different for sure. But you get what you get and don’t throw a fit (Thanks to granddaughters Emma and Willow)

Out of thirty-five plants grown, only 30 are included in the report. There were three cherry varieties and even I do not weigh and measure those. There were two salad sized and the same was true there. There were two dwarf varieties from the dwarf project that were included but one dwarf variety only produced salad sized fruit…it was an F-1 so maybe next year or so .

Thirty plants produced just over 636 pounds of tomatoes; 21 pounds per plant average. The ten year average here in Nebraska is 431 pounds for 30 plants + or - a couple. The high production years were 2016, 200 and 2008 and the low were 2007, 2014 and 2010.

Top producers: Kolb at 341/2 pounds, Helen’s German at 33lbs and Reif Red Heart at 33lbs

Largest single tomato: Orange Russian #117 at 29 oz., Kellogg’s Breakfast at 26 oz., Giant Oxheart, Helen’s German and Provenzano each 24 oz.

largest average size fruit variety: Helen’s German-16oz., Provenzano-14 oz., Dixie Golden Giant-13.4 oz

Top varieties for flavor (which for us is the most important part of growing tomatoes) Remember, this is our personal taste from our neck of the woods.

scale of 10; 9/10 varieties: Mortgage Lifter (which of the many ML strains, I do not know), Willow’s Bulgarian ( from a SSE variety called No-Name Bulgarian, renamed for our use only), Kolb and Joe’s Pink Oxheart.

8/10: no special order: Emmy T-115 (dwarf project), Italian Sweet, Virginia Sweets, Amana Pink, Reif Red Heart, Giant Oxheart, Hungarian Heart, Dixie Golden Giant.

You may notice I like sweet large tomatoes and the list is heart heavy. Never met a heart I didn’t like. Sorry for the length…I only get this long once a year.
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
Charter ATP Member Seed Starter Tomato Heads I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
Birds Garden Ideas: Master Level Butterflies Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Roses Photo Contest Winner: 2016
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Newyorkrita
Nov 2, 2016 10:49 AM CST
Excellent report. I am afraid I am not so great at record keeping. I have no idea how much I actually got from any plant or type. My reports are more general as in if I liked the taste, if it was productive or not and general heath of the plants.

I will add my observations when I get a chance.
Name: Paul Fish
Brownville, Nebraska (Zone 5b)
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PaulF
Nov 2, 2016 3:14 PM CST
Not many are as anal as I am about record keeping. It's what old retired guys do to waste away the time. Sometimes I would rather not be so addicted to keeping track. Now after 15 years it is difficult to quit.
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
Charter ATP Member Seed Starter Tomato Heads I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database! Vegetable Grower Lover of wildlife (Raccoon badge)
Birds Garden Ideas: Master Level Butterflies Celebrating Gardening: 2015 Roses Photo Contest Winner: 2016
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Newyorkrita
Nov 2, 2016 3:36 PM CST
Hey, it works for you and that is what counts.
Name: Don Shirer
Westbrook, CT (Zone 6a)
Seed Starter Tomato Heads Vegetable Grower Avid Green Pages Reviewer
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DonShirer
Nov 21, 2016 8:48 AM CST
Thanks for the detailed report, Paul. Especially the heartsI I like their firm texture and few seeds. Good for both sandwiches and roasting for sauce. I've had good results with Reif R.H. and Kosovo in the past. Tried Russian 117 (not orange) this year with mixed results. Will try Wes next year.
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
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mom2goldens
Nov 23, 2016 9:06 PM CST
Thanks for your great report, Paul. I am in awe of your record-keeping. I try to do some, but inevitably it falls by the wayside as I just run out of time. You had some amazing yields!

I'll try to post my thoughts here (from my small garden), as well as soon as I get through Thanksgiving dinner. Would love if others would also.
Name: Don Shirer
Westbrook, CT (Zone 6a)
Seed Starter Tomato Heads Vegetable Grower Avid Green Pages Reviewer
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DonShirer
Nov 24, 2016 8:01 AM CST
@PaulF
Paul, could you share your source for Joe's Pink Oxheart? I was looking for it this spring but couldn't find a supplier.
Name: Paul Fish
Brownville, Nebraska (Zone 5b)
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PaulF
Nov 26, 2016 2:22 PM CST
Carolyn Male sent me seeds for Joe's and asked me to grow it out. I returned seeds to her and kept a bunch for myself. You might check with Lazy Ox Farm at a later date. They indicate being out of stock. They were an original source. If you are a SSE member I think there are some private sellers. I am not a member. I am not sure of my inventory but I may have a few to share. I will get back to you if you cannot find seeds elsewhere.
Name: Sally
central Maryland
Seriously addicted to kettle chips.
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sallyg
Nov 26, 2016 10:29 PM CST
Kudos Paul for your record keeping!
Hi RIta!

I grew Celebrity, Early Girl, Mortgage Lifter and Cherokee Purple this year. I'm in central MD zone 7 . All bought as starter plants from a plant wholesaler, only two each so bear that in mind. New garden plot in full sun and our rainfall was outstanding this year, many things grew amazingly well, no disease
Celebrity- Great yield, pretty fruit, good taste, semi determinate compact plants made several flushes of fruit
Early Girl- Excellent yield, good taste, vigorous vines, kept on going till the very end
Cherokee Purple- My favorite taste so far , I love them, sadly they did not grow well for me this year. But I grew them once before and was happy with them.
Mortgage Lifter- also did poorly, and wasn't impressed with flavor either.

I'll definitely grow Celebrity, Early Girl, Cherokee Purple again, am considering trying one of the 'blue' ( Pinetree seeds has Indigo Rose, Blueberries, Blue Beauty)
edited- Rita, I found Blue Beauty in the files and read your notes, thanks! sounds good
..come into the peace of wild things..-Wendell Berry
Life is a buffet (anon)
[Last edited by sallyg - Nov 27, 2016 2:43 AM (+)]
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