FIELD PERFORMANCE AND SENSORY ANALYSIS OF EARLY TO MIDSEASON TOMATO CULTIVARS

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  • 1 University of Maine, P.O. Box 179, Monmouth, ME 04259

Twelve early to midseason ripening tomato cultivars were evaluated for early and total marketable yield, fruit size, and external characteristics under the cool, short growing season of northern New England. The acceptability of external and internal color, texture, and flavor of four cultivars was evaluated by a sensory panel of 50 members. There was little difference between cultivars in total yield. This was probably due to an early frost that destroyed much of the later ripening fruit. `Summerset' had the highest early and overall yields but the smallest fruit size. `Johnny's 361` had high overall yield and large fruit with good early yields. `Pilgrim' had high early yield, good overall yield, and fair fruit size. `Jetstar' and `Daybreak' fell into the middle of the range for total yield and fruit size, but `Jetstar' had very low early yield. `Pik Red' and `Pik Rite' had low early and total yields but good fruit size. `Moreton Hybrid' had fair early and total yields and small fruit size. In the sensory analysis, `Sunrise' had the highest rated external color, while `Moreton Hybrid' had the lowest rating. Internal color ratings did not vary greatly, although `Sunrise' was least acceptable in this characteristic. `Jetstar' was rated highest for flavor and texture, followed by `Moreton Hybrid', `Sunrise', and `Valley Girl'.

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