Top Tomato Varieties
So, I was discussing tomato types with a colleague of mine the
other day and she suggested that we throw together a bit of a
list for our readers on the many different varieties of toms now
available at the local nursery. “Sure”, I said, “I can do that in no
time!”. How wrong I was! There are that many types of toms out
there, I didn’t know where to start… so I enlisted the help of a
couple of great tomato growing websites to assist. Below is an
amazing list of Australia’s best tomato types, thanks to Malcolm
Campbell’s website “Greenfingers” (www.greenfingers.com.au),
and the fantastic www.tomato.com.au. These two websites are
fantastic for tomato info and I would encourage you all to have a
An aphabetical list of top tomato types
Amish Paste is an open pollinated indeterminate mid season variety which needs staking and grows
1 metre to 1.5 m, with quite variable egg-shaped fruits 4-5cm wide and in the range 5-12cm long. It
has solid very tasty flesh, ideal for making preserves, stews and for drying.
Apollo is an F1 hybrid and an indeterminate early variety which needs staking or else the strong
bushes will collapse. They usually make 2 to 2.5 metres in height, with globular fruit about 5-6cm in
diameter. The best fruit set is early season, which is just as well because it doesn’t have much
Apollo Improved, an F1 on an indeterminate bush, is an early variety. It needs staking and has the
mild flavoured low acid taste of the old Apollo but with improved disease resistance to bacterial Wilt
and Root Knot Nematode. It also has firmer fruit and sets fruit at temperatures as low as 10oC.
Ballerina is an open pollinated determinate bush to 1.3 metres in height, with Roma-style egg
shaped fruits, from 5-6cm in diameter by 8-10cm long, mid season with very solid fruit, well suited to
drying and cooking.
Beefsteak is an open pollinated mid season indeterminate of 1-1.5 metres in height, with 10-12cm
solid deep oblate fruits on very sturdy bushes.
Bite Size is an F1 hybrid indeterminate that grows from 2.2 to 2.7 metres in height, so that it needs
a sturdy stake and is best trained to three leaders to capitalise on maximum fruit set. The cherry
type fruits are up to 3cm in diameter and mature in 77-84 days from seed. Has disease resistance
from Verticillium Wilt, Fusarium Wilt, Bacterial Speck and Late Blight.
Black Russian is an open pollinated variety with an almost black exterior to its deep oblate 4-6cm
diameter fruits. The inner flesh is a deep chocolate colour.
Burnley Bounty is an open pollinated indeterminate on a 1.5 to 2 metre bush with a good crop of 8-
10cm deep oblate fruits that set very late in Victoria. Seed has been known to retain some viability
for 15 years! Probably not as popular as it has been in the past, due to its susceptibility to disease,
but grows well hydroponically
Burnley Gem is an open pollinated determinate with a bush to 1 metre that produces early globular
fruit 4-7cm in diameter and sets well in hot dry areas. Burnley Metro is an open pollinated
determinate on a 1 metre bush that produced 8-10cm deep oblate fruits in the mid to late season.
Available as punnet seedlings.
Burnley Surecrop is an open pollinated semi-determinate cultivar with a robust 2 to 2.5 metre bush
that yields 5-6cm globular fruits in early to mid season and reputedly sets fruit two weeks earlier
than Grosse Lisse. Has disease resistance to Verticillium Wilt, unlike Grosse Lisse.
Cherry Cocktail is an F1 hybrid collection of three cherry type fruits that set red, orange and
yellow 2-3cm fruits with a tasty mild flavour. They are indeterminate cultivars, each climbing vine
needing a strong 2 metre stake or a weld mesh ring to contain the huge trusses of fruit set all
summer and autumn. Resistant to Verticillium and Fusarium Wilts.
Cherry Gold is an indeterminate to 2 metres with 1.5cm cherry type golden fruits that set a
hundred or more per truss. The trusses are often over half a metre long and set in mid to late
season. Available as seedlings in punnets.
Cocktail Supreme is an F1 hybrid indeterminate that’s synonymous with S900 and grows to a
vigorous 2 metre climbing vine. A very tasty thick skinned 2-3cm cherry type fruit for mid to late
season that sets 20-50 fruits per truss, which are best picked as they ripen. Available as seedlings in
punnets or for production nurseries from Sandoz Seeds.
Dynamo is an F1 hybrid, known as the popular commercial variety Riverdale Red in WA. It is an
indeterminate that grows to 2.5 metres, so you’ll need to trellis them and it produces masses of 8-
10cm globular fruit with a good shelf life. An a mid to late season variety with resistance to the
Verticillium and Fusarium Wilts. Noted for its uniform set of fruit from the bottom all the way to the
First Prize is an F1 hybrid determinate, recently marketed as Patio Prize, that makes a 0.5 metre
bush and grows into a sturdy container specimen that sets prolific trusses of globular 2-4cm fruits in
the mid to late season. In a well watered garden they are prone to fungal diseases.
Green Zebra is an open pollinated indeterminate that grows to 1m and is also known as Green
Streaked. The globular 5-7cm green striped fruits have a creamy texture to their flesh, with an
outstanding flavour and yields of 13 kgs per bush are common. They take 96 days to mature from
seed available from Digger’s.
Grosse Lisse is an open pollinated indeterminate that will grow to 2 metres. I’ve even seen it over
3.5 metres high up a trellis! It has been the standard by which most Australian home gardeners in
southern states have measured their tomato growing prowess for the past 50 years. It sets fruit in
very hot conditions for mid to late season, after 100 days from seed or 80 days from seedlings. The
fruits are tasty 6-10cm oblate and smooth, best picked with a hint of pink and ripened indoors or the
acid levels rise, however if you like the wild taste, then you leave them to sun ripen. While the
original Grosse Lisse had little disease resistance there are recently developed improved selections,
being passed off as ‘old’ Grosse Lisse, which have considerable resistance to some fungal diseases.
Jubilee is an indeterminate 1.7 to 2 metres with 6-8cm golden orange deep oblate fruits, with a mild
flavour for mid season crops. Sets fruit in 72 days from seed.
KY1 is a determinate cultivar with a bush to 1 metre for early to mid season fruit which has
excellent flavour in the 6-8cm oblate fruits, noted for making great sauce.
Mighty Red is an F1 hybrid also known as Carmelo in California. It is a very strong indeterminate
bush that will easily make 3.5 metres, but is best pruned hard when it is young to induce a more
manageable habit. The tasty globular 8-10cm fruits literally push each other off the massive trusses.
Well suited to a wide range of soil types. Resistant to Root-Knot Nematode, Verticillium Wilt,
Fusarium Wilt, Tobacco Leaf Mosaic Virus and yet it sets fruit in the heat and tastes just like Grosse
Mini Red Pear is an indeterminate that will grow 1.2 to 2.2 metres in height and set a prolific crop
of tasty 2 x 3cm red pear shaped fruits in mid season. Mostly available as seedlings.
Mini Yellow Pear is also known as Yellow Baby and it’s an indeterminate vine that will grow 1.2 to
2.2 metres in height and set trusses of 5-15 tasty yellow pear shaped fruits with low acid of about 2 x
3cm in size in the hot mid season.
Mortgage Lifter is also known as McGarity, an open pollinated indeterminate that will grow to 3
metres and sets huge trusses of pale pink mid season fruits, 12-15cm in diameter with a mild
flavour. Bushes recently averaged some 17kgs of fruit in trials at Seymour Vic.
Oxheart is an open pollinated indeterminate that will reach 2 metres and produce solid deep oblate
or heart-shaped 10-15cm fruit of a pale pink colour with very few seeds in them and low acid. A
single fruit can exceed 500 grams. They grow well in cool climates and yield best in the mid to late
Patio Prize is an F1 hybrid also known as First Prize, a compact determinate to 0.5 metres, it
produces 2-4cm globular fruits in the mid to late season. Available as seed in the Attunga range.
Patriot is an F1 hybrid of semi determinate habit, which will grow to 0.5 metres on a trellis or be
left to trail on the ground. It sets 10-12cm deep oblate fruit in mid season and is suited to humid
areas such as northern NSW and SE Queensland. Resistant to Verticillium Wilt and Fusarium Wilt.
Pot Prize grows well in a pot – and you don’t need a huge tub. It will grow no taller than waist
height and does not need any shoots pinched out. Do use a short thick stake however as the fruit is
very heavy and left unstaked will strain the plant and result in a yield reduction.
Red Cherry is an indeterminate to 1 metre in height with a high yield of mid season cherry style
fruits of 2cm diameter, that mature in 65 days from seed.
Red Peach is an indeterminate bush from 1.6 to 2.0 metres in height with an early set of globular 4-
5cm fruits with very soft skin. Definitely a fruit a nibble in the garden. Seed from Digger’s.
Regency is an F1 hybrid determinate to 0.5 metres with a very early season set of 6-8cm oblate
fruits. Planted as the earliest spring crop in Florida USA. Disease resistance to Verticillium Wilt and
Fusarium Wilt. Seed from South Pacific Seeds for commercial growers.
Roma is an open pollinated determinate with a bushy habit to 1 metre and mid season egg shaped
fruits of 4cm by 6 cm long, that are used for bottling and cooking as well as drying. The modern
Roma VF Plum as it is called in USA, is disease resistant to Verticillium Wilt and Fusarium Wilt and
is the cultivar widely sold in Australia as Roma.
Rouge de Marmande is an open pollinated indeterminate bush to 2.5 metres. An old favourite for
the early to mid season crop with excellent flavour and an exceptional fruit set in cool areas such as
Tasmania. The almost flat deep oblate fruits are usually 6-8cm in diameter, but show considerable
variation in size when compared to some of the modern cultivars. They are very versatile in the
kitchen. Seed readily available from Yates, Kings, New Gippsland and Grower’s Pride.
San Marzano can be grown in a small pot (minimum 25cm diameter). It is a thick skinned fleshy
roma, perfect in salads, or cut in half long ways and fried up on. Because it is a bush type, there is
no need to stake it. It is very popular for the 1 or 2 person household, and doesn’t grow out of
Super Beefsteak is an open pollinated robust indeterminate that grows in the range of 1.5 to 2.0
metres tall. A mid to late season variety with massive 10-12cm globular fruits. It matures in 85 days
from seed and is resistant to Root-Knot Nematode, Verticillium Wilt and Fusarium Wilt. Seed is
available in the Erica Vale, New Gippsland and Kings selections.
Super Marmande is an open pollinated indeterminate, synonymous with Marmande VF, Marmalade
Super and Supermarmande, which differ from Rouge de Marmande in that they have resistance to
Verticillium Wilt and Fusarium Wilt, while retaining the superb Rouge de Marmande flavour and
ability to set fruit in cool regions. Super Marmande matures in 62 days from seedlings with an early
set of delicious deep oblate fruit 7-10cm across
Super Prize is an F1 hybrid of determinate parents that grows to 0.5 metres. It is an improved
version of First Prize, showing disease resistance to Verticillium Wilt and Fusarium Wilt. It’s a mid to
late crop with 2-5cm globular fruits. An ideal balcony crop for container vegetable gardening.
Super Roma is an open pollinated determinate that grows to 1 metre and in the mid to late season
sets a bumper crop of almost seedless egg shaped fruits, 6cm long by about 4cm thick, that are
perfect for bottling, juicing or fresh. They mature in 76 days from seedlings and are resistant to
Verticillium Wilt and Fusarium Wilt.
Sweet 100 is an F1 hybrid indeterminate that grows to 2 metres and is also known as Sweet Bite. A
vigorous mid to late season variety it produces copious tasty fruits on long trusses of a 2.5cm red
cherry type of fruit, that set in the most symmetrical order. Because the fruits can split with over
watering, they are best picked regularly.
Tiny Tim is an open pollinated determinate that makes a bush 1.5 high. An early season variety it
sets huge trusses of 2-3cm cherry type red fruits. Matures in 80 days from seed and makes a sturdy
container plant given support.
Tommy Toe is an open pollinated indeterminate that creates a bush 2.2 to 2.7 metres tall when
given support. A mid to late season variety the 2-3cm cherry type fruits are one of the tastiest
Tomatoes I’ve eaten. They have a very heavy fruit set of at least 10kgs per bush.
This article is compiled from information gathered from www.greenfingers.com.au and
www.tomato.com.au. Go on, check them, out, I know you will be impressed… I was.
For more awesome info on growing your own sustainable vegies and herbs at home, why not check
out the Yummy Yards book at our secure online shop.
Pics 1, 3 and 4 by Mary Trigger
Pic 2 by Helen Tuton