The hot and humid weather in Georgia is conducive to the development of diseases on tomato plants, therefore the best varieties of tomato plants for Georgia are those with excellent disease resistance. The following abbreviations are often listed on plant labels to indicate a variety’s resistance to diseases: A (Alternaria early blight), N (nematodes), T ( tobacco mosaic virus), TSW (tomato spotted wilt), V (verticillium wilt), and F, FF, F1 or F2 (fusarium wilt).
Indeterminate Tomato Plants
Indeterminate, or vining, tomato plants can grow up to 10 feet long. The tomatoes ripen throughout the season and the plant stops growing when killed by frost.
Big Boy has been a favorite tomato variety for years. It has smooth, very large fruit with meaty flesh and a great flavor. Better Boy bears a large crop of 12 to 16 oz. tomatoes that are bright red and flavorful. It is resistant to fusarium and verticillium wilt and nematodes.
‘Early Girl’ is resistant to fusarium and verticillium wilt, and bears good slicing tomatoes. ‘Beefmaster’ has solid meaty tomatoes that weigh up to 2 pounds. It is resistant to fusarium and verticillium wilt, and nematodes.
Determinate Tomato Plants
Determinate, or bush, tomato plants are bred for compactness. The plants stop growing when the terminal fruit ripens. The rest of the tomatoes ripen and the plant dies.
Celebrity is a type that bears large, firm tomatoes on strong plants. It is resistant to Alternaria early blight, nematodes, tobacco mosaic virus, fusarium and verticillium wilt. Amelia tomato has large to extra large fruits on vigorous plants that are resistant to fusarium and verticillium wilt, nematodes and tomato spotted wilt. The tomatoes are not as flavorful as older varieties. Rutgers is a cultivar that bears juicy tomatoes with deep-red color throughout, and is good for canning. It produces a heavy harvest but is not as disease resistant as newer varieties.
Mountain Fresh tomatoes are large and with superior flavor and Mountain Pride variety bears medium to large, deep red fruit. Mountain Spring has bright red tomatoes that are resistant to cracking and blossom end rot. All are resistant to fusarium and verticillium wilt.
Cherry Tomato Plants
Cherry tomato plants produce clusters of small fruits. The Jolly variety bears abundant clusters of pink, juicy tomatoes and Sweet Baby Girl has long clusters of dark-red fruit. Super Sweet 100 bears large multiple-branched clusters of very sweet tomatoes that are high in vitamin C. The Grape Tomato has long grape-like clusters of brilliant red elongated cherry tomatoes. The Juliet variety bears fruit larger than Grape Tomatoes on vigorous plants.