lily51
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first year for heirlooms

We have had a garden for 30+ years and have always grown hybrid tomatoes like Early Girl, etc. This year I started some heirloom tomatoes in my greenhouse. Read how tasty they were compared to hybrids. Have to say I'm not impressed at all with the production on these things. Is this typical? I'm ready to go back to my hybrids so we have more than just a few tomatoes.

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stella1751
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Lily51, I completely agree about the productivity. I've grown mostly hybrids in 20+ years of gardening. I wanted to try heirlooms this year because, well, I wanted to experiment. Right now, my Delicious variety heirloom tomatoes are averaging 9 tomatoes per plant. (That's right. I've been driven to counting my tomatoes before they are red.)

In the past, Early Girls, Lemon Boys, even Celebrities and Heatwaves have given me five, six, seven, even more, dozen per plant. I'm hoping for a dozen tomatoes per plant this year.

However, I blame myself. I didn't research my variety before choosing seeds. I chose my variety based upon tomato appearance, not productivity.

There is a thread in the Tomato forum with photos and critiques of varieties grown by forum members. Great stuff! I have studied the varieties, and I have asked questions. Next year, I'm going with Spudakee. (I think that's its name.) I am seriously looking forward to next year!

Yep, I plan to continue growing heirlooms. Even though the production is pitiful on the kind I now have, I want to keep trying. The hybrids became too easy for me. I want a challenge, and I clearly have that this year :-) I also want to grow something out of the ordinary, and I've got that, too.

I'll just try with a different kind :-)
"Imagination is more important than knowledge." -- Albert Einstein

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gixxerific
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Hybrid or not. This has not been the best year for anything. I can't remember the last day it was under 90 degrees. Tomatoes don't like 90 degrees.

I know people that have hybrids in the ground that aren't doing a dang thing. I have been getting tomatoes (all heirlooms) in batches. I hoping this heat wave stops and they come back to life it has been hard around here for everybody.

This is my first year with heirlooms and it will not be my last. I think I will plant a hybrid or two next year but the majority will again be heirlooms.

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soil
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i have no problems with production, i got 15-20 lbs of fruit each plant from multiple varieties last year, looks to be about the same this year as well.
For all things come from earth, and all things end by becoming earth.

lily51
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To Green Thumb...what varieties do you plant? I tried Marglobe, beefsteak, aunt ruby's german green, to name a few. I'll go back to mostly hybrids.
I do have to agree that in Ohio it's been a crummy year for gardens.

vermontkingdom
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I've grown the normal list of suspects for many years. However, last year I grew quite a large number of heirloom paste tomatoes and this year I'm growing about 15 varieties of heirloom large tomoto types(brandywine, stupice, indian stripe, cherokee purple, etc., as well as early girl, better boy, big boy, etc.). There may be a slight reduction in the number of heirloom tomaotes compared to the hybrids but the difference doesn't appear, at this point, to be too large.
"Good gardeners do not have green thumbs. They have brown knees, soiled hands and big hearts."

vermontkingdom
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I've grown the normal list of suspects for many years. However, last year I grew quite a large number of heirloom paste tomatoes and this year I'm growing about 15 varieties of heirloom large tomoto types(brandywine, stupice, indian stripe, cherokee purple, etc., as well as early girl, better boy, big boy, etc.). There may be a slight reduction in the number of heirloom tomaotes compared to the hybrids but the difference doesn't appear, at this point, to be too large.
"Good gardeners do not have green thumbs. They have brown knees, soiled hands and big hearts."

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stella1751
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The kind I am growing is called Delicious, a tantalizing name given that I have yet to eat one :evil: Like Gix, I am getting tomatoes in batches. Were there no such thing as recorded temperatures, meteorologists could tell the record highs and record lows by looking at my plants. There were three weeks this summer of straight 80's; I have three rings of tomato production the length of my plant: medium, small, and tiny. The medium start about 18" up the plant, right about the time we put lows in the 30's behind us; then there are the small ones, about 30" up and, more recently, tiny little pea-sized tomatoes at about 42".

Beginning today, we are headed into our regular August temperatures of 80's. I look to see production begin again. Yay!

I wouldn't recommend the Delicious, not right now. Then again, that might change once I eat one! If they live up to their name, I might actually try a few again next year . . .

I'm definitely not putting all my tomatoes in one variety again, though.
"Imagination is more important than knowledge." -- Albert Einstein

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farmerlon
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This was my first year to grow heirloom tomatoes from seed, and I have been very pleased with the results. I grew about 8 different varieties, and I have had good production from them all ... and oh so tasty! :)
Production has slowed over the last 3 weeks or so, but we've had excessive heat (about a month and still going)... 90-95+ degree days.

I always grow some hybrid varieties too; and I will definitely continue growing heirlooms.

lily51
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I just talked to my sister-in-law who got some of the heirlooms I started in my greenhouse. She said she couldn't believe how many tomatoes she has ready with many more on the way! Guess I'll take back what I said.

I think it has a lot to do with when you planted this year. She planted hers about as early as possible, while mine were a last ditch effort in June in mud followed by more rain.

Farmerlon... you're from Tennessee, so you difinitely planted your tomatoes earlier than us Ohioans. seems like that could be the explanation.

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farmerlon
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lily51 wrote:... Farmerlon... you're from Tennessee, so you difinitely planted your tomatoes earlier than us Ohioans. seems like that could be the explanation.
Yes, I certainly had ripe "garden tomatoes" much earlier than you did in Ohio.

I wanted to see how long I could stretch my tomato growing season this year... I started putting transplants into the garden on March 31st !
During the early spring, I had to do a lot of covering on frosty nights, but it was worth the effort ... mmm, tomatoes :D

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