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Gardener's Delight Tomato Seed Germination and Growing Thread

Discussion in 'Edible Gardening' started by JWK, Mar 29, 2018.

  1. Sheal

    Sheal Total Gardener

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    Thank you for the invite @JWK :) but under different circumstances I would be glad to give them a go. Unfortunately I don't have any older seed and I'm currently not 'geared up' to grow much at all. I'm still trying to get my new garden into something workable and I don't have a greenhouse here, sorry!

    To those who are growing the older seed may I point out (as of the Manx Marvel experiment) - that to keep the plants and fruits that you grow true to the original mother plants, they must be grown in an area away from other tomatoes to avoid cross pollination. :)
     
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    • Sheal

      Sheal Total Gardener

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      For anyone interested in the growing of 'Manx Marvel' tomatoes, and perhaps some pointers for growing 'Gardeners Delight' - here's the original thread we ran. At the time we grew them I was living on the Isle of Man.

      A Rare Vintage Tomato
       
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      • Redwing

        Redwing Wild Gardener

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        If we are using commercially produced seed and not our own saved seed this will not matter for this year. The seed will be pure GD. If cross pollinated with another variety this year it will be the seed being produced in this years fruit which will not be pure GD. So conducting this experiment with pure seed this year will work for our taste testing experiment even if other varieties are grown alongside GD. But we cannot repeat this with our own saved seed next year and expect safe results. Hope I’ve explained that clearly.
         
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        • Scrungee

          Scrungee Well known for it

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          Enclosing a truss with a piece of thin 'fleece' (tied with string bound around the stem) before the flowers start opening and removing after the fruits have set will eliminate any chance of cross pollination. It needn't cover the whole truss, only the first few flowers and those tomatoes are reserved for seed saving. Marking fruit by tying coloured wool around their stems helps prevent accidentally picking tomatoes intended for seed saving. Don't forget to tap the truss to assist pollination.

          P.S. To refresh my memory on the declining rates of germination using out of date tomato seeds, I sowed 2 packets of 30 Red Alert seeds, one sow by 2016 and the other sow by 2017. Pricking them out into modules this morning, I counted 24 seedlings from the use by 2017 pkt and 18 from the 2016 pkt. The older seeds also took longer to germinate and had 6 'runts' whilst the sow by 2017 seeds only had 3.
           
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            Last edited: Mar 30, 2018
          • silu

            silu gardening easy...hmmm

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            MY other half pinched/ate the Garden Pearl I had earmarked to save for seed last season, I was not impressed. He is now banned from picking anything in my greenhouse at all times! Luckily I had enough saved seed from the previous year for this year's sowing and they have germinated fine. If they hadn't murder might have been committed:)
             
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            • Scrungee

              Scrungee Well known for it

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              Good news! When I opened the 2005 seeds packet there were over 200 seeds inside (amount not described on packet), later years had '75 seeds' on them but contained approx. 120 seeds. I've read that the majority of the cost of most packets of seeds is for the packet and not the contents.

              25 x 2005, 25 x 2007 and 15 x 2012 seeds sown this morning, after lunch I'll get some of each soaking overnight in weak Miracle-Gro solution.





              I'm growing the 2012 seed for that purpose.
               
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              • Vince

                Vince Not so well known for it.

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                Unable to join in this year as I have no old seed but I will be interested in the results this year and hopefully join in next year.
                 
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                • JWK

                  JWK Gardener

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                  An interesting article here from 2015, about Which magazine investigating the loss of flavour:

                  The Casual Gardener: The tomato that no longer delights

                  My highlighting:

                  and

                   
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                  • JWK

                    JWK Gardener

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                    I have just emailed the original breeders "Benary" to see if they still maintain it or know why it has declined.
                     
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                    • silu

                      silu gardening easy...hmmm

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                      Hmm interesting to hear their response @JWK. I'll be surprised if sales of the GD seed haven't declined over the past 10 years or so. If GD didn't have such a great and memorable name it might well have disappeared completely. Certainly the last time I grew them they were neither a delight or memorable for the right reasons.
                       
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                      • Scrungee

                        Scrungee Well known for it

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                        • JWK

                          JWK Gardener

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                          Received your seed today thanks @Scrungee

                          I started two batches, each batch is 5 X 2005, 5 X 2007 and 5 X 2012.

                          The first batch was soaked in dilute Gro-More and Aspirin for 40 minutes, then sown into seed compost.

                          The second batch just sown as normal straight into seed compost.

                          I still have more than half left as insurance.
                           
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                          • Scrungee

                            Scrungee Well known for it

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                            Sowed soaked seeds this afternoon, 25 x 2005, 20 x 2007 and 15 x 2012 seeds. Only about 10 x 2005 seeds left, all others now used.

                            As floating seeds are supposed to be non-viable, I was concerned when over half the 2005 seeds initially floated, but had all sunk by the time I went to sow them. Might try a test with some other, old saved seeds, fishing out initial floaters and comparing their germination rate against initial sinkers, something for a rainy day, so might be soon.
                             
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                              Last edited: Mar 31, 2018
                            • JWK

                              JWK Gardener

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                              My 2005 seed sunk straight-away as did the other two years. I only soaked 5 so maybe not a fair comparison.

                              Handling wet tomato seeds is not an easy job, they keep sticking to my fingers or whatever I tried using.
                               
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                              • Scrungee

                                Scrungee Well known for it

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                                I did it the same way as with seed saving, strain through a kitchen sieve, smartly tap them out onto double thickness kitchen towel and wait until dry enough to rùb off individually using a plastic plant label.
                                 
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                                  Last edited: Apr 3, 2018

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