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2009 Growing Journal: Early Girl Tomato vs. Jetsetter Tomato

2010 Growing Journal Start Page:

- Siberian Tomato vs Stupice Tomato

- Bloody Butcher vs Gregori's Altai Tomato

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2010 Growing Journal: Siberian Tomato vs Stupice Tomato

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Siberian and Stupice

Undersized at a little over six weeks old. A lack of rain this May/April so far has prevented the rapid growth I was hoping for that we got last year. Nothing is better for fast growth than plenty of natural rainwater and sunshine. Note the leaves on the Stupice at right, this is a potato leaf tomato. The good news is we are expecting rain the next 3-5 days and that should promote some good growth. Above: Siberian on left, Stupice on right.

Update: June 1st:

What a difference 3 weeks makes! Strong rains balanced by lots of Sunshine have propelled growth from what you see above, to what you see below in just 3 weeks. Both the Siberian tomato plant on the left and the Stupice tomato on the right have small tomatoes emerging already. I fertilized June 1st, approx 1 month after transplanting. I have tried not to water them too much as the rain has done a lot of that for me, but soon, I will be forced to water every day, or every other day. I will be keeping track of the moisture in the soil with a moisture meter. I will also soon be adding rock mulch to the top of the soil to keep the temperatures cool in this hot 6b climate zone in the Tulsa area. All images open larger in new window.

Siberian tomato plant on the left, Stupice tomato plant on the right.

Young Siberian Tomatoes Young Stupice tomatoes

Young Siberian tomatoes, and young Stupice tomatoes.

Update: July 2, 2010

Siberian and Stupice tomatoes started coming ripe around the first of July, both around the same time. No clear winner. Production seems fairly well with the Siberian producing more and the Stupice producing slightly bigger fruit. Even so, the fruit on the Siberian is smaller than expected, only about 1.5 inches in diameter.

The humidity has been horrible this year but there have been more than adequate rains for this time of summer. The heat index has been well above 100 for many days. Both plants are tolerating the heat very well, which is great considering they are traditionally for colder climates.

The Siberian plant is really short and I imagine that a micro farm could grow lots of them, if there was a market for smaller tomatoes.

Watering & Care: Watering once a day, usually in the evening, when it hasn't rained or isn't expected to rain that day. Watering at the base of the plant, until the water starts to fill the container and is running out the holes in the bottom.

Left, Siberian Tomato plant. Right, Stupice Tomato plant. Images open larger in new window.

Update: July 18th

The Siberian tomato is producing more fruit. Both are standing up to a summer with a very high heat index. (temp plus humidity). Watering once a day unless it rains.

Taste Test: According to my wife, who enjoys fresh tomatoes about as much as I like making/eating tomato sauce, the Siberian has a superior flavor over the Stupice. She describes the Siberian as having a mild, subtle flavor that is a little bit sweet whereas the Stupice is very strong and acidic.

Her parents arrive from Romania next week and I'll be offering up both tomatoes to them for a taste test as well. So far this year.

Not much else to report.

Right, Siberian. Left, Stupice. Images open larger in new window.

Update August 10th, 2010

As many of you already know, this summer was one of the hottest on record. In this part of Oklahoma, I remember reading/hearing that it was the 2nd hottest summer on record in 100 years. To characterize it better, the temperatures stayed above 100 for more than 2 months with only a handful of days where it was below 100. Furthermore, the heat index was regularly, most days, above 105.

It was pure hell on earth and I am glad it's almost over.

As for tomato gardening, it was almost a pure waste. The first crop of early tomatoes came in nice and strong, but there was no second crop. The Siberian's and Stupice were more productive in the heat than the Bloody Butcher and Gregori's Altai, but eventually they succumbed to the horribly high temperatures as well and tomato production was practically non-existent across the board.

Because of this, I have very little to report. Although it's difficult to compare last year to this year, (last year was hot too, but nothing like this Summer), it's my opinion that my overall tomato crop of early season tomatoes was better last year with the hybrid's Early Girl and Jetsetter, than it was with the heirloom varities this year. I think hybrid's often get an undeserved bad wrap since it is generally believed their seeds cannot be saved. However, hybrids do serve a valuable purpose in the traits that are selectively bred into them, which help the gardener have a more productive growing season. Heat tolerance, fast growth, higher productivity, taste, - hybrids with these traits bred into them can often mean the difference between canning 10 quarts, and 40 quarts of tomatoes.

Despite laying a rock mulch on top of the soil the temperatures have been too much for the Siberian and Stupice this year.

Update: September 1st.

The rest of August we were still plagued with extremely high temperatures and I am calling the season over with for the early tomato varities. Next year, I'll be reporting on some heat tolerant hybrid varities such as the Spitfire, Sun Leaper, Sunmaster, Solar Set, Solar Fire and Heatwave. I will also include and report on some other early season tomatoes, as yet to be decided.

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