Author Topic: Direct seeded dry farmed tomato breeding project  (Read 213 times)

William S.

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Direct seeded dry farmed tomato breeding project
« on: 2018-12-01, 06:50:07 AM »
I've been direct seeding tomatoes for two years. The first year I tried about 70 kinds thinking it would be a bit of a breeding project. Wasn't, turned out in my climate in that year it worked great. Most tomatoes worked. I'm thinking now that tomatoes can be direct seeded, it's just a bit of a different game than transplants. It also may not work for everyone.

So in 2018 I grew out and identified some F1s from known mothers and unknown father's from 2017 using exserted stigma varieties as the mothers.

In 2019 I think I will plant a portion of the F2 population in a bed to be dry farmed. I'm hoping some will do better than others and it will be the start of an experiment towards a grex of tomatoes that do well with that.

The second part of this is wild tomatoes. I got a few seeds back from two wild crosses I got from Joseph and Andrew in 2017. I abused the parents by not watering much. These seeds are more precious to me, but I plan to repeat that. I will do them as transplants because I have no evidence that transplanting reduces the ability to direct seed in future generations. However if I get a dozen seedlings from each of the two mothers, I may put four in each of three treatments.

Then there are Solanum Peruvianum complex tomatoes. They seem to produce seedlings as volunteers even for Joseph who doesn't get many tomato volunteers or have much luck with direct seeding. It's possible that they could have genetics that could extend the direct seeding of tomatoes to areas that that doesn't work in now.
« Last Edit: 2018-12-01, 09:44:12 AM by William S. »
Western Montana garden, glacial lake Missoula sediment lacustrian clay mollisoil sometimes with added sand in places. Zone 6A

William S.

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Re: Direct seeded dry farmed tomato breeding project
« Reply #1 on: 2019-08-06, 05:47:09 AM »
My direct seeded dry farmed field is doing very well if a little late this year. First sign of a few plants drying out. Lots of flowers, some fruit set.
Western Montana garden, glacial lake Missoula sediment lacustrian clay mollisoil sometimes with added sand in places. Zone 6A

William S.

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Re: Direct seeded dry farmed tomato breeding project
« Reply #2 on: 2019-08-06, 05:52:31 AM »
Soil quality really matters for this. My native soil needs sand addition it seems to grow healthy plants consistently. Shallow spots in the field without sand addition are growing inadequate plants. Native soil has a 7 inch plow layer for topsoil and a 5.6 inch water holding capacity. So I am adding more sand to the poor performing parts of the field.
Western Montana garden, glacial lake Missoula sediment lacustrian clay mollisoil sometimes with added sand in places. Zone 6A