Saturday, April 28, 2012

Our 2012 Tomato, Pepper Garden

First of all, 2011 doesn't count. The unusually cool, wet spring and nearly non-existent summer here in the Sacramento area last year played havoc with just about all the tomato varieties: low production, late production, no production! The peppers, too, were late to ripen. 

Lemon Boy,  center
Probably the best performing tomato last year was Lemon Boy, which is a solid producer, year after year here. But again, we won't consider last year's results in this year's trials. 

Late April 2012 is becoming more typical of our mid-spring weather here: nighttime temperatures over 50, soil temperatures over 60. And today, April 28 is Official Tomato Planting Day here in California; and the weather is ideal: clear, high near 80, overnight low near 52...and sunny, warmer days in the seven-day forecast.

The rain and cool days may have ended, if you want to believe the National Weather Service's Long Range Forecast for interior California.

So, fingers crossed, here are the tomatoes and peppers we have in the ground this April:

Isis Candy
Big Beef (300 g)
Solid Gold grape tomato
Early Girl (110-140 g)
Celebrity (226 g)
Bloody Butcher
Sweet Million
Mandarin Cross
Dr. Wyche’s Yellow
Sungold (14 g)
Lemon Boy VFNASt
German Giant

New Hybrids for us:
Poseidon 43: pink low acid tomato. Globe, 78 days, 225 g

Tye-Dye: bright yellow-orange red. Round, Indeterminate 195 grams, 78 days

Caramba: red, 75 days, flat, indeterminate, 250-300g

Amsterdam: grape/plum tomato. highest brix of all tomatoes tested. 68 days, 22 grams.

Yaqui: red blocky saladette, 85-105 grams, 75 days, determinate vigorous

Serrano Tampiqueno
NuMex Joe E. Parker
Jimmy Nardello
Bhut Jolokia  (Ghost Pepper)
Cayennetta F1 (AAS winner)

Giant Marconi
And a new introduction, Sweet Orange Blaze: an AAS winner. Orange skin, small - 125g. Plant 30" tall.


  1. I don't know whether to curse you for showing off or thank you for this information.

    Thank you---tons.

  2. And I thought I was hot stuff with the four I planted yesterday!

  3. I'm trying TyeDye for the first time this year too...looks interesting. I ALWAYS plant Sun Gold. Black Krim is also a new one for me. Early wonder i've planted before too.

  4. Thanks for the information. Thinking of trying Lemon Boy , I believe I have room for one more tomato :)

  5. I planted Black Krim last year and it was great. Good taste and nice size. Will do again this year. Also did Lemon Boy and made yellow ketchup out of it. Also good

  6. Do you ever grow tomatoes in (big) pots? My backyard is almost all cement and I am not thrilled with the patio varieties of tomato. I have Celebrity, Brandywine & Early Girl in pots this year. Any helpful hints?

  7. Lemon Boy was great for me last year. I'm planting Lemon Boy, Early Girl, and Sun Gold this year.