New Tomato Varieties for the Midwest - PowerPoint

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2010 Trial Results and Old Favorites

                       Ward Upham
                   Kansas State University
‘Modern’ tomato varieties
 Semi-determinate (‘determinate’) vine

     Indeterminate         Determinate
       Advantages of Compact Vine
Adapted to raised bed culture
Short cages or ‘stake-weave’
More stable in wind
Use less water and fertilizer
Closer spacing-more plants per
Yields comparable to large vined
    Recommended Varieties
• Grape/Cherry Types
• Standard Slicers
Grape/Cherry Type Tomatoes
•   Juliet (indeterminate)
•   Mountain Belle (determinate)
•   Sun Gold (indeterminate)
•   Suncherry (indeterminate)
•   Supersweet 100 (indeterminate)
•   Tumbling Tom (determinate)
•   Sweet Olive (determinate)
•   SunSugar (indeterminate)
Standard Slicers
• Amelia
• Beefy Boy (indeterminate, short
• Carolina Gold (yellow)
• Celebrity
• Floralina
• Florida 47
• Florida 91
Standard Slicers (continued)
•   Jet Star
•   Jet Setter
•   Mountain Fresh Plus
•   Mountain Gold (yellow)
•   Mountain Spring
•   Scarlet Red (enhanced taste)
•   Sun Leaper
‘Modern’ tomato varieties
 Semi-determinate (‘determinate’) vine
 Multiple disease resistance
Multiple Disease Resistance
Modern varieties usually resistant to the wilt diseases.
Heirlooms probably will not be.
Leaf blight (Early Blight and Septoria Leaf Spot) is a
different story. No varieties with good resistance.
Rotate plants to different areas or use chlorothalonil to
An ‘Old Favorite’
 Indeterminate
 Good yields
 Excellent crack resistance
 Has limited disease resistance
JetStar vs. JetSetter
 JetSetter is a modern variety that has
  been touted as an improved JetStar
 JetSetter has better disease resistance
  but equal yield and unknown crack
 JetSetter is a few days earlier than
 I plant both
Other Desirable Traits

 Heat tolerant genetic trait (Hot Set)
 Long Shelf Life (LSL) genetic trait
 Enhanced Flavor
Blossom drop from excessive summer heat.
      Daytime 95 F, Night 75 F
      Excessive N; Hot, dry winds make problem worse

A genetic trait- usually referred
to as the Hot Set or Heat Set
gene allows tomatoes to set
under heat conditions.
Many new varieties now are
being developed with the Hot
Set gene incorporated.
 Heat Tolerant Varieties
Florida 91, Sun Leaper and Sunmaster have done well.
Florida 91 also has long shelf life and so would be my first
Long Shelf Life (LSL) Tomato
       When a tomato reaches a full size, green stage, it
starts to produce an internal gas – ethylene- which
‘drives’ the ripening process. Continuous ethylene
production continues after the tomato is fully ripe- then it
becomes soft, squishy, and begins to rot.
Long Shelf Life (LSL) Tomatoes

LSL tomatoes can be held for a longer time after fully ripe
with little loss of quality or flavor.
Long Shelf Life (LSL) Tomatoes

LSL tomatoes can be held for a longer time after fully ripe
with little loss of quality or flavor.
Long Shelf Life (LSL) Tomatoes

 Have held tomatoes for up to 1 month after fully ripe
 and still edible.
Long Shelf Life (LSL) Tomatoes

 Florida 91, Pik Ripe 193 and Keepsake are LSL varieties.
 Florida 91 is my first choice because it is also heat tolerant.
Growing Tomatoes
Don’t start too early in the season.
In Manhattan, 20% chance of a freeze April 30
                   10% chance of a freeze May 5
                     5% chance of a freeze May 9
Soil temperature should be a consistent 55o F

Below critical soil temperature,
plant roots don’t develop and
plants don’t absorb nutrients
Plants may survive but don’t
How to Take the Soil Temperature
• Take at a depth of 2 to 2.5 inches at
  between 10 and 11 am
• Should be at least 55° for several days in
  a row
       What Happens if You
         Plant Too Early
• Plants don’t grow
• May get phosphorus deficiency
           Planting Earlier
• Use Walls-of-Water and Plastic Mulch
• Use transplant solution (root stimulator)
• One cup solution per plant
            Basic Information
•   Full sun
•   How many: 3 – 5 plants per person
•   Spacing: 2 to 4 feet between plants
•   Mulch when soil warms
•   Irrigation: Try drip irrigation
•   Training (sprawling, cages, stake & weave)
             Drip Irrigation
• Water doesn’t evaporate as quickly
• Foliage doesn’t get wet; less disease
• Wait until soil warms
• Straw or hay are most commonly used
           Training: Cages
• Quick to set up
• Tend to blow over, need room to store
       Cages: What to Use?
• Can buy cages; often too wimpy
• Try concrete reinforcing wire
Making a Cage

    13 squares +
    Training: Stake & Weave
• Takes more time
• Requires pruning
    Training: Stake & Weave
• Takes more time
• Requires pruning
    Training: Stake & Weave
• Takes more time
• Requires pruning
     Training: Stake & Weave
• What to use for stakes?
• T-posts or Rebar
Blossom-End Rot on Tomatoes
 Blossom-End Rot on Tomatoes
♦ Caused by calcium deficiency in fruit
♦ Usually not a lack of calcium in the soil
♦ Tops outgrow the roots during cool spring
♦ Weather turns hot and roots can’t keep up
♦ Fruit bypassed; leaves have priority for
water and nutrients
♦ Situation corrects itself in a couple of
    Blossom-End Rot: Recommendations

•   Avoid damaging the root system
•   Do a good job of watering
•   Mulching can help
•   Adding calcium to the soil or spraying
    calcium on the plants usually does not
    work. Most of Kansas soils have adequate
    amounts of calcium.
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