Tomatoville® Gardening Forums


Notices

Interested in planning your own tomato-tasting event? Post your ideas and/or plans here!

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old September 15, 2011   #1
SEAMSFASTER
Tomatovillian™
 
SEAMSFASTER's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: American Fork, Utah
Posts: 160
Default Delectation of Tomatoes - Taste Test Results

Delectation of Tomatoes, etc. held it's first tomato tasting event on September 10, 2011. Participants sampled 83 varieties and ranked each for flavor on a scale of 1-10.

And the winners are...

Posted at:
http://www.gianttomatoseeds.com/toma...t_results.html
SEAMSFASTER is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 15, 2011   #2
carolyn137
Moderator Emeritus
 
carolyn137's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Upstate NY, zone 4b/5a
Posts: 21,175
Default

Very interesting and sometimes surprising results in the first table presented but I suppose that what it reinforces is that taste is personal and perceptual and actually has a human genetic component. As well as reinforcing the fact that two folks on the same street can grow the same variety and the fruits may not taste the same depending on many variables.

There are many on the lists that I know very well since I introduced them, but more to the point just knowing that some folks somewhere had ripe tomatoes to taste makes me very very jealous since this is the third year in a row here in upstate NY that my tomatoes were beyond pathetic.

And all who attended should appreciate the hard work that you did in putting on the event and I know that since I too have organized taste testings myself.

I'm too lazy to go back up and read but did you furnish all the tomatoes or did some who attended bring some of their varieties as well?
__________________
Carolyn
carolyn137 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 15, 2011   #3
SEAMSFASTER
Tomatovillian™
 
SEAMSFASTER's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: American Fork, Utah
Posts: 160
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by carolyn137 View Post
... did you furnish all the tomatoes or did some who attended bring some of their varieties as well?
Carolyn,

I appreciate the kind words, especially considering the source. And in case it's not obvious, you and your work were major inspirations in giving me the courage to start this little tomato (etc.) business! Friends, neighbors and customers are VERY appreciative of the opportunity to sample so many good varieties. I think we've won a lot of converts away from grocery store tomatoes!

It's a one-man operation - 420 plants of 280 varieties crammed into 1/15th (0.07) of an acre. With the exception of about 25 varieties, I grew them all from seed.

All of the tomatoes presented were those I grew on site (my sister's house). However, one lady brought three beautiful tomatoes to show me (she purchased seedlings in May), including a huge (1.9 lb.) double tomato, similar in shape to the Richardson that's depicted on my home page. But since she did not record the variety names (you of all people know how important that is...), I did not use them in the tasting event.

One of the biggest surprises to me is that only one cherry tomato made the top ten (once upon a time I swore I would never grow tiny tomatoes again...). Otherwise, nearly all of the high scoring tomatoes are ones I really liked this year as well.

As a scientist, you know that sample sizes need to be at least 20 or so to get statistically valid results. Presenting medians rather than means might be more meaningful, since there were wide differences in opinions (one person rated Yellow Pear an enthusiastic "1,000" - go figure).

Anyway, considering the very cool and wet Spring we had here, I feel fortunate that the tomato crop is doing so well. My biggest challenge is getting all the tomatoes sold - it is my first year!

I am curious to know what a few of your surpises are.

Thanks
SEAMSFASTER is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 7, 2011   #4
lakelady
Tomatovillian™
 
lakelady's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: northern NJ zone 6b
Posts: 1,862
Default

That's great to see how some tomatoes ranked! You've done a big job of growing all those different tomatoes . Far better than I would have for sure!

I am curious. You have listed Tim's Black Ruffles and Purple Calabash. I've heard it said that possibly they are one and the same. Did you grow both of them? Were they the same tomato to you?

Also I see that Big Zac is listed up there too. Nice to see that really big tomatoes can also have flavor!
__________________
Antoniette
lakelady is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 8, 2011   #5
SEAMSFASTER
Tomatovillian™
 
SEAMSFASTER's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: American Fork, Utah
Posts: 160
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by lakelady View Post
That's great to see how some tomatoes ranked! You've done a big job of growing all those different tomatoes . Far better than I would have for sure!

I am curious. You have listed Tim's Black Ruffles and Purple Calabash. I've heard it said that possibly they are one and the same. Did you grow both of them? Were they the same tomato to you?

Also I see that Big Zac is listed up there too. Nice to see that really big tomatoes can also have flavor!
I could not tell any difference between Tim's Black Ruffles and Purple Calabash. The plants looked and grew the same, and the fruit had the same color, shapes, flavor and tendency to split. I suppose that a more patient and astute observer could distinguish them, however.

Some people are prejudiced against all big tomatoes because some varieties truly are not very good for fresh eating. Several strains of Big Zac which I have grown, however, have a wonderfully rich and sweet flavor along with a juicy texture. Several who try it for the first time become instant fans. It's great for sandwiches, juice, sauces or whatever. And of course it's a lot more fun to pick one huge tomato than 1,164 teeny weeny currant-sized tomatoes!

Big Zac is rather prone to splitting, however - and the often multi-lobed, fused fruits can be downright ugly. And not all strains taste so good.

The attached pics are of a 2.266 lb. Big Zac, a 2.500 pounder, and a dense clustering of about 15 lbs. worth. When I harvested all the unripe tomatoes just ahead of the season-ending frost, I got about 200 lbs. off of 8 Big Zac plants - this was after harvesting several hundred pounds during the previous few weeks!
SEAMSFASTER is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 8, 2011   #6
lakelady
Tomatovillian™
 
lakelady's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: northern NJ zone 6b
Posts: 1,862
Default

Those pics of Big Zac look good...I've seen some of the multi lobed ones and they just don't look very attractive or edible. I'm definately going to make room for one of those for next year! I never had an inclination to grow "giant tomatoes" until I saw your website, lol...they just look so good I have to try a few
__________________
Antoniette
lakelady is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 9, 2011   #7
NewWestGardener
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada
Posts: 490
Default

Obviously you've done a fantastic job, particularly from a one-man operation. What strain of the Big Zac is yours, if you don't mind me asking? Other people here may also be interested to learn it, so we can hunt down the proper seed source. Anyways, congratulations to the wonderful harvest.
NewWestGardener is offline   Reply With Quote
Old September 15, 2011   #8
SEAMSFASTER
Tomatovillian™
 
SEAMSFASTER's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: American Fork, Utah
Posts: 160
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by semi_lucid View Post
Text deleted. Had a problem getting that page to display, but I got it fixed.
Glad you were able to read the results! I've narrowed the table and added a link to a Google document in case anyone else has troubles. I'm a beginner at this website design, obviously...
SEAMSFASTER is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 9, 2011   #9
lakelady
Tomatovillian™
 
lakelady's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: northern NJ zone 6b
Posts: 1,862
Default

I got the impression it wasn't a strain but that DT had grown it out over several generations. Hopefully he will come on and explain it.
__________________
Antoniette
lakelady is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 10, 2011   #10
SEAMSFASTER
Tomatovillian™
 
SEAMSFASTER's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: American Fork, Utah
Posts: 160
Default

I'm a relative newcomer (obviously) to the world of tomato growing. I first heard/read of Big Zac in a 2009 R.H. Shumway's Illustrated Garden Guide (pg. 54). The description reads, in part, "An excellent tomato in every respect; meaty and delicious". I grew it that year and was hooked.

In 2010 I became involved in growing tomatoes for size through Perry's Greenhouse (http://www.perrysgreenhouse.com/vbforum/). That endeavor was instrumental in opening my eyes to an entire world of tomatoes (etc.) outside the big seed company catalogs (Burpee, Gurney's, Jung, Park, etc.).

Anyhow, apparantly giant tomato growers are taking their cue from the world of giant pumpkin growers. See http://www.pumpkinlink.com/ and http://www.aggc.org/aggc_main.asp if you're not familiar with how they trace lineages in that world. Briefly, each registered pumpkin is designated first by an official weight, second by the grower's last name, and third by the year grown. The current world's record is 1818.5 Bryson 2011. More than 12,000 pumpkins are listed!

Of course the world of giant tomato growing is very different. We're dealing with multiple varieties instead of just one. However, most of the really huge ones (5 lbs. plus) have Delicious or Big Zac ancestry (though Marv Meisner grew some monsters from Brutus Magnum and MegaMarv this year as well).

As far as I can tell, there is not a standardized convention for naming noteworthy giant tomatoes. I have suggested following the lead of giant pumpkin growers but adding the variety name. For example, I would suggest listing the largest tomato grown (and officially weighed and registered) in 2011 as:

Delicious (6.51 Meisner 2011)

(See http://www.bigpumpkins.com/WeighoffR...spx?c=T&y=2011 for the full list).

Over the years, I'm guessing that many hybrids have been de-hybridized by tomato growers, yet the OP strain (is there a better term?) still retains the same variety name as the original. Carmello is one that comes to mind.

In the world of Big Zac tomatoes, growers have been selecting for big tomatoes for several years. This means, of course, doing what we're told never to do: save seeds from a hybrid.

Documentation of lineages for giant tomatoes is nothing like it is for giant pumpkins. However, the most promising lineage (is this a more acceptable term than "strain"?) I have is:

Big Zac (2.660 Thurber 2011) (came from) 2.762 Thurber 2010 4.83 Perry 2009 5.58 Timm 2008 3.9 Catapano 2007 4.29 Lyons 2006 Big Zac (assume commercial F1).

So that brings us to F7, at least. When do we quit counting F's and just call it OP? I, for one, am not inclined to call something a new variety just because someone grew a remarkable specimen or because it's been de-hybridized. By the way, the 5.58 Timm seed produced a 7.18 Harp 2009!

So, NewWestGardener, I've listed one of the better lineages I raised this year. The tomatoes are very tasty and productive, as mentioned. On October 16th I finally got around to thinning off the smaller tomatoes on one of the plants, leaving just two big ones. The thinned tomatoes came to 24 lbs. (see pic).

Just as with giant pumpkins, those who are serious about growing giant tomatoes don't bother with the unproven genetics in seed catalogs. They obtain seeds through auctions, raffles, club membership, seed swaps, or contacting the grower directly. I don't think you'll see tomato seeds going for $350 a pop anytime soon, however! (Perhaps if you manage to grow a 10 pounder...)

Lineage, cultivar, strain, variety, open pollinated descendent of a hybrid variety - have you posted somewhere, Carolyn, what the proper definitions are for these terms? I agree that word choice is important so that confusion and miscommunication are minimized.

I hope I haven't hi-jacked this thread too terribly or bored anyone with too many details!
Attached Images
File Type: jpg Big Zac (2.762 DT 2010) thinning 10-16-2011 L rev.jpg (381.9 KB, 88 views)
SEAMSFASTER is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 10, 2011   #11
carolyn137
Moderator Emeritus
 
carolyn137's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Upstate NY, zone 4b/5a
Posts: 21,175
Default

Lineage, cultivar, strain, variety, open pollinated descendent of a hybrid variety - have you posted somewhere, Carolyn, what the proper definitions are for these terms? I agree that word choice is important so that confusion and miscommunication are minimized.

*******

Some of those terms have been known forever, and not defined by me since there already was agreement in the tomato world.

The definition of strain was asked just recently here and Travis and I posted in that thread which is in the General Discussion area.

Cultivar is a term that those in academia use to refer to a variety, and that word is almost THE only word used almost exclusively in scientific articles, papers, about tomato varieties being used in the studies,

A variety has forever been recognized as one where the various traits of the variety are known and the variety is stable, and remains so unless or until a mutation or cross pollination occurs, and that's also discussed in the thread here about strains.

Open Pollinated (OP) usually refers to a variety where all seeds sown give rise to the same identical plants and fruits, again, unless a mutation or X pollination occur.

When working with a hybrid, whether it be a known commercial hybrid, or a hybrid that was one from deliberate breeding , or whether it be from an accidental X pollination, selections made from the saved F2 seeds from the hybrid give rise to F generations, so If I make a selection amongst the F2 plants from the initial hybrid, such as maybe Ramapo F1, the saved seeds are referred to as F3 seeds and onward one goes until all seeds of a single selection give rise to the exact same plants and fruits.

At that point it's an OP and different individuals doing the work may at that time rename what they have or just refer to it as an F6 or F7, or whatever. There's no consensus on that. it really depends on whether it's a dehybridization of a known commercial hybrid to an OP state or whether it's something quite different from what one started out with.

http://www.kdcomm.net/~tomato/

I highly suggest the above link to KM's superb tomato site for explanations of genetic segregation and how many generations it takes to get a selection to the genetically homogeneous OP state. And there's so much more at that site in terms of how to make crosses, well, you just have to see. Start with the link on Cultivation, I think that's the one where segregation is discussed and don't forget to look at all the other resources and links at his site.

As for Marv Meisner I know him well and have for years. His user name at most places is lubadub. He's posted here at Tville in the past but as he's said, there isn't that much interest at this site in growing big tomatoes, which is true.

Here's a couple of links from Garden Web that might interest you and in the one you'll see him asking if I saw what he posted, and there's a long backstory between Marv and myself that goes back to Gordon Graham's award winning 7# 12 oz tomato.

http://forums.gardenweb.com/forums/l...3326655.html?6

http://forums.gardenweb.com/forums/l...395418365.html

Those are just a few of the links. And yes, those interested in growing big tomatoes kind of stick together and post at the same sites and share seeds amongst themselves and others when they're available.

Marv has offered to send me some of those seeds of large ones but I've never taken him up on his offer and probably won't, b/c I've never had any interest whatsoever in growing large tomatoes, if they happen they do, but there are lots of folks for whom it's the chase and the fun of doing so, just as it is for those who enter competitions for the largest cabbage, the longest carrot, the largest turnip, etc.

But the main reason I grow tomatoes, about 3,000 varieties to date, is for taste and it sure helps a lot if the tasty ones are also good producers.

I almost forgot that because of some talk between Marv and myself, I think I remember I'm supposed to be sending him bulbs for a BLACK TULIP.
__________________
Carolyn
carolyn137 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 18, 2011   #12
lubadub
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: PA
Posts: 146
Default BZ, a hybrid

Please allow me to attempt a clarification of the situation with Big Zac. Big Zac is a hybrid. Repeat, Big Zac is a hybrid. It is a cross made by Minnie Zaccaria (Karolyn, please learn to spell her name....lol.) using two large heirloom varieties as the parents. Minnie went on to win the New Jersey Tomato Contest 6 or 7 times growing BZ. Later Totally Tomatoes was given the exclusive right to make and sell the seeds, which they continue to do. Anyone else offering these seeds is selling BZ F2 or whatever. Several years back, the seeds were apparently being made incorrectly. One of the parents may have been lost. This has been corrected. I grew BZ seeds obtained from TT alongside some gotten directly from and made by Minnie this last season and they were similar in all ways, big plants, big roots and big tasty tomatoes.

Some growers have been growing out Big Zac. Timm Brandt grew a 5.58 pound tomato using a BZ F3 and Nick Harp grew a 7.18 pound tomato using seed he got from the Timm tomato. I have grown these seeds and have gotten plants that were smaller than those from BZ F1 and which tended to wilt in hot weather. The root systems were small. I got one tomato over 5 pounds growing 14 of these plants. I will not be growing them this next season but will be observing how others do.

I hope this clears the air on whether BZ is a hybrid. I will ask Minnie to read this post to make certain I got it right. Marv
__________________
Bigger is Better!
lubadub is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 18, 2011   #13
carolyn137
Moderator Emeritus
 
carolyn137's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Upstate NY, zone 4b/5a
Posts: 21,175
Default

Dearest Larvin ( sic) you got it right, or almost right.

Please look at my post 10 and you'll see where I talked about one parent being lost, Minnie coming to GW to explain that, and the fact that BZ F1 was sold by other places when it wasn't a hybrid.

You'll also see in that post 10 that I linked to the threads at GW where someone else reported what size one you grew most recently and I asked you a few questions about the backgrouond of your seeds and you answered me quite clearly.

I also said that once TT as owned by Wayne Hilton was sold to Jung's that I was pretty sure that the BZ F1 they were selling was correct.

I don't think anyone doubts that the original BZ F1 WAS an F1, where the confusion comes in is what then happened at the old TT when they were selling F1 seeds that weren't and the same was happening at a few other places as well.

Also, confusion comes in when folks save seeds from the F1, whether it initially be F2's, make selections, F3's, etc., and still refer to it as an F1, when it is not an F1 at that point.

To date I don't know of anyone who has taken it out to whatever generation and then compared it with the F1, which I assume they were growing at each generation as a control, to say that they have an almost exact OP Big Zac. But you'd know that better than I would since I don't hang out with the big tomato growers as you do.

Glad to see you here and when you become as perfect as I am in all ways, please do let me know, lest I misspell something, or forget a comma, etc., which of course you never do
__________________
Carolyn
carolyn137 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 18, 2011   #14
lakelady
Tomatovillian™
 
lakelady's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: northern NJ zone 6b
Posts: 1,862
Default

Well, since Big Zac was "born" in NJ it's only fitting I should grow one . Would be fun to see what the hybrid is like compared to the F7's. I can only "hope" mine yields anything even close to Minnies!

I have Marvin's book and read all about some of those people who have grown some pretty amazing tomatoes and Minnie is a local legend around here. I just wish they still held those giant tomato contests here in NJ because I'd love to go to one.

I'm growing for flavor to find the tomatoes that grow the best in my soil, but how fun would it be to have a few "big boys" to show off to the neighbors
__________________
Antoniette
lakelady is offline   Reply With Quote
Old November 18, 2011   #15
lubadub
Tomatovillian™
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: PA
Posts: 146
Default When you are right, you are right.

Carolyn, you have way too much free time on your hands. Now that I have gone back and reread your post, you are absolutely right, as far as you went.
__________________
Bigger is Better!
lubadub is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
results , taste , tasting , test , winner

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 10:53 AM.


★ Tomatoville® is a registered trademark of Commerce Holdings, LLC ★ All Content ©2019 Commerce Holdings, LLC ★