Best in the Pacific Northwest: Stupice and Sweet Million Tomatoes

Varieties that can handle intermittent and unpredictable availability of sunlight, such as Stupice and Sweet Million tomatoes, are a good bet in the Pacific Northwest region.
February/March 2010
http://www.motherearthnews.com/organic-gardening/stupice-sweet-million-tomatoes-zmaz10fmzraw.aspx
Stupice and Sweet Million tomatoes are equal to the challenge posed by variable sunlight in the Pacific Northwest gardening region.


ILLUSTRATION: NATE SKOW

Tomatoes must often play hide-and-seek with warm sun in the Pacific Northwest region, where ‘Early Girl’ held a big lead in the slicing category. Small-fruited varieties such as ‘Super Sweet 100’ and ‘Stupice’ get plenty of respect here because they are so dependable. Plus, many gardeners have discovered the fun of drying elongated grape-shaped tomatoes such as ‘Juliet’ and ‘Principe Borghese.’


Slicer Tomatoes

1. ‘Early Girl’
2. ‘Beefsteak’
3. ‘Stupice’

Also: ‘Big Beef,’ ‘Cherokee Purple,’ ‘Willamette’

Cherry Tomatoes

1. ‘Super Sweet 100’
2. ‘Sungold’
3. ‘Sweet Million’

Also: ‘Black Cherry,’ ‘Gold Nugget’

Paste/Canning

1. ‘Roma’
2. ‘San Marzano’
3. ‘Amish Paste’

Also: ‘Viva Italia,’ ‘Principe Borghese’

Really Big Ones

1. ‘Brandywine’
2. ‘Beefsteak’
3. ‘Mortgage Lifter’

Also: ‘Early Girl,’ ‘Big Beef,’ ‘Goliath,’ ‘Hillbilly’

Saladette/Pear

1. ‘Yellow Pear’
2. ‘Stupice’
3. ‘Glacier’

Also: ‘Juliet,’ ‘Principe Borghese’

Non-Reds

1. ‘Green Zebra’
2. ‘Cherokee Purple’
3. ‘Black Krim’

Also: ‘Taxi,’ ‘Jubilee’


Neighborly Advice

“I plant tomatoes in large black nursery pots with the bottoms cut out, sunk a few inches into the ground. To protect the plants until the weather warms, I use Wall O’ Waters or make my own cages from clear plastic sheeting.”

Dave Sexton
Portland, Oregon

“About a month before transplanting, I cover the tomato beds with black plastic to warm the soil and take it from soggy to nicely moist. I also add heat via Wall O’ Waters, plastic hoop houses or row covers wrapped around the tomato cages.” 

Carrie Dennett
Seattle, Washington

“Harvest fruit as soon as it’s ripe to prevent draining energy from plants and encouraging pests. Plant a few extra plants and donate the extra produce to the local food bank.” 

Jim and Kennette Orsingher
Roseburg, Oregon


Read The Best Tomatoes to Grow Where You Live to find the best varieties for other U.S. gardening regions.


Contributing editor Barbara Pleasant gardens in southwest Virginia, where she grows vegetables, herbs, fruits, flowers and a few lucky chickens. Contact Barbara by visiting her website or finding her on .