Rutgers Tomato

Rutgers Tomato

The Flavorful Journey of the Rutgers Tomato, Revealed




Rutgers Tomato; In the farming, several crop types have gone beyond their purely functional functions to become cultural icons. The Rutgers tomato is one such instance, revered for its heritage, flavor, and influence on the tomato market. Both farmers and tomato lovers have a particular place in their hearts for this beloved variety. An n-depth analysis of the origins, traits, and continuing legacy of the Rutgers tomato is articulated therein in this piece.


Origins and History of the Rutgers Tomato


The New Jersey Agricultural Experiment Station at Rutgers University is where the Rutgers tomato history began in the early 20th century. It was the creation of Lyman Schermerhorn and Benjamin Buckman, two brilliant horticulturists. Schermerhorn and Buckman set out on a path of crossbreeding and selection in an effort to create a tomato variety that is disease-resistant, tasty, and acceptable for processing..
Their efforts culminated in 1934 with the creation of the Rutgers tomato, initially named the quot; JTD, & quot; which stood for John Thompson Dorrance, a Campbell Soup executive who provided funding for the research. This tomato possesses perfect balance of attributes that make it ideal for commercial processing and fresh consumption.

Rutgers Tomato
Rutgers Tomato

Characteristics and Cultivation

The Rutgers tomato, is known by its medium size, deep red color and slitely smooth flattened shape. One of its most notable features is its exceptional flavor – a harmonious blend of sweetness and acidity, that tantalizes the taste buds. Its thick skin makes it suitable for processing into sauces, pastes, and ketchups, while its juicy interior is perfect for slicing onto sandwiches and salads.

The disease resistance of the Rutgers tomato is one of the contributing causes to its success. It is specifically- designed to resist prevalent tomato diseases like verticillium wilt and early blight. In keeping with contemporary sustainability methods, this not only improved yield stability but also decreased the need for excessive pesticide use.

When cultivating the Rutgers tomato, its preferred environmental condition of full sunlight, well-drained soil, and mild temperatures is critical. The risk of disease transmission reduces by providing enough air circulation between plants. Although it may planted in household gardens, commercial farmers have traditionally relied on it because of its versatility.


Legacy and Effect the Rutgers Tomato

An important turning point in the tomato industry was the release of the Rutgers tomato. Its ability to withstand diseases offered a remedy for the ongoing battle against crop losses brought on by infections, which was a worry for farmers and processors. This innovation sparked the creation of more disease-resistant tomato varieties and improved tomato farming in total.


Furthermore, during World War II, when there was food supplies shortage, the Rutgers tomato variety was crucial. It was a resource for feeding soldiers and civilians due to its tremendous yield and durability. The tomato came to represent tenacity and nourishment in trying times.

How to grow Rutgers tomatoes


Rutgers tomatoes can be grown successfully. The variety is popular for their flavorful aroma and ability to adapt when cooking. Find below an in-depth manual on how to cultivate them with success:


1. Determining the Perfect Place

Consider an area that receives direct sunlight for at least six to eight hours each day because tomatoes need full sun. Ensure the soil has a pH within 6.0 & 6.8 and the soils are well-draining.


2. Sowing the Seeds:

About 6 to 8 weeks prior to your latest anticipated frost date, you can grow Rutgers tomatoes inside from seeds. Utilize high-quality seed starting by mixing in seed trays or little pots. Plant seeds in a layer 14 inch, deep, softly water, and then wrap them with plastic wrap or a place them in a humidity dome. Until seedlings emerge, keep the temperature at 24-29°C (75-85°F)


3. Transplanting:

Transplant your seedlings into the garden when they have at least two sets of true leaves and all danger of frost has passed. Space plants 18-24 inches apart in rows spaced 36 inches apart.


4. Proper Support:

Rutgers tomatoes are indeterminate, meaning they continuously grow and produce fruit throughout the season. Provide sturdy support like cages or stakes to keep the plants upright.


5. Watering:

Water consistently, aiming to keep the soil consistently moist but not water-logged. Avoid overhead watering to prevent foliage diseases; use a soaker hose or drip irrigation instead.


6. Fertilizing:

Fertilize with a balanced, slow-release fertilizer or organic compost when transplanting and again when the first fruits appear.


7. Pruning and Maintenance:

Pinch off the lower leaves as the plant grows to improve air circulation and reduce the risk of disease. Remove any suckers (small side shoots) that form in the leaf axils to encourage larger fruit production.


8. Pest and Disease Control:

Scout for common tomato pests like aphids, horn worms, and white flies. You can use organic or chemical controls as needed. Prevent diseases like early blight and late blight by ensuring good air circulation and avoid overhead watering.


9. Harvesting:

After transplanting Rutgers tomatoes, reach maturity in 75–80 days. Harvest the fruit when completely pigmented, firm, and has a small amount of give when lightly squeezed. To avoid harming the plant, trim the stems using a pair of clean shears or scissors.


10. Storing and Using:

To preserve the flavor and texture of ripe tomatoes, store them at room temperature. In salads, sandwiches, or sauces, enjoy them fresh. Due to their robust flavor, Rutgers tomatoes are especially well-suited for creating tomato sauce.


11. Saving Seeds:

– If you want to save seeds for future planting, choose healthy, ripe tomatoes, scoop out the seeds, and ferment them for a few days. Rinse and dry the seeds before storing them. Growing tomatoes may require trial and error, and conditions can vary yearly. Regular care, attention to detail, and adapting to your specific growing conditions will help you achieve a bountiful harvest of delicious Rutgers tomatoes.




The Rutgers tomato is a monument to agricultural scientists creativity and the effectiveness of crossbreeding and selective breeding methods. Its origins at Rutgers University and subsequent influence on the tomato business serve as a shining example, of how scientific research, agriculture, and delectable cuisine can coexist. The Rutgers tomato continues to serve as a reminder, that agricultural innovation may influence not just our meals but also the course of history thanks to its disease resistance and unmatched flavor.


Frequently Asked Questions About Rutgers Tomatoes


(1). What are Rutgers tomatoes?

Rutgers tomatoes are a classic variety known for their rich history and versatile use. They were developed by Rutgers University in the 1920s, as a reliable and disease-resistant tomato suitable for both fresh consumption and processing.


(2). How do Rutgers tomatoes taste?

Rutgers tomatoes are known for their balanced and slightly acidic flavor. They have a good mix of sweetness and tanginess, making them a popular choice for eating fresh, canning, and making sauces.


(3). Are Rutgers tomatoes determinate or indeterminate?

Rutgers tomato plants can be either determinate or indeterminate, depending on the specific cultivar. Determinate varieties tend to produce their fruit in a more concentrated period, while indeterminate varieties continue to produce fruit throughout the growing season.


(4). Can I grow Rutgers tomatoes in containers? 

Yes, you can grow Rutgers tomatoes in containers. However, due to their potential size, it's recommended to choose compact or dwarf varieties specifically bred for container gardening. Ensure the container is large enough to support the plant's growth and provide proper support, such as a cage or stake.


(5). How do I take care of tomato plants from Rutgers? 

Sow Rutgers tomato seeds or seedlings on a well-drained soil that receives enough sunlight. Separate them according to the guidelines for the variety being grown. Water routinely maintaining an even moisture level of the soil and assist the growth of indeterminate variety. Mulching may assist in keeping the soil moist and stop weed growth.


(6). Are Rutgers tomatoes resistant to diseases? 

Rutgers tomatoes, were initially developed for disease resistance, particularly against verticillium and fusarium wilts. However, disease resistance can vary among different cultivars. Choosing disease-resistant varieties and practicing proper garden hygiene can help minimize disease issues.


(7). Can I preserve Rutgers tomato seeds to plant later? 

Yes, you can store Rutgers tomato seeds for planting in the future. To conserve seeds, remove them from ripe tomatoes by scooping them out, rinsing off the gel covering them, and letting them dry on paper towels. The dried seeds should be kept in a cool, dry area.


(8). When do Rutgers tomatoes typically mature? 

The time it takes for Rutgers tomatoes to mature can vary based on the specific cultivar and growing conditions. However, you can expect to start harvesting ripe tomatoes around 70 to 80 days after transplanting seedlings into the garden.


(9). Can I make sauces with Rutgers tomatoes?

Due to their flavor balance and relatively high flesh-to-seed ratio, Rutgers tomatoes, are frequently used to make sauces. They are a popular choice for canning and boiling into sauces because of their meaty texture and rich flavor.


(10). Are Rutgers tomatoes appropriate for novice gardeners?

Because of their dependability and resilience to illness, Rutgers tomatoes, are frequently suggested for novice gardeners. They are a fantastic option for those new to gardening or tomato growing because they are simple to grow and care for.


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