Re: [tomato] An interesting least for me...

ChuckWyatt/Md/Z7 (
Thu, 11 Mar 1999 02:48:40 -0500

The native tomato is a tiny berry that would hardly be recognized as a
tomato.  It is native to Central America and there are still cultivars
there that are a different family although they are notorious for crossing
with modern varieties.  Modern varieties are Lycopersicon Lycopersicum
while the native Brazilians are Lycopersicon Pimpinelifolium and I won't
even try to grow them for fear of crossing with my heirlooms. These
landraces are far removed from the Lycopersicum.

The seed needs temps of about 70 to 85 degrees for germination and if it
were grown in full sunlight for 10- 12 hours per day, as it would in open
fields of Central America, it would undoubtedly do well under those
conditions.  We are starting seedlings under considerable less light than
that and as a result the plant tends to stretch toward the light it does
get, just as it would try to escape the undergrowth under jungle

If we can slow down the plant's metabolism by keeping it cool, we can
thwart the tendency toward spindly growth.  Holding back on the water is
also helpful. It's not such an oxymoron, is it?

Chuck Wyatt