Issue: February 2, 1998

Recommended tomatoes for New Mexico


I am looking for a large, good-eating tomato to plant this year. In the past I have had good luck with tomatoes, but they are not as large as I would like. This is for a home garden. Please send me the name of a tomato I described.


George Dickerson, NMSU Extension horticulture specialist working with small farms, backyard vegetable gardens, and small fruit crops provided the following information:

Dickerson suggests that you try Burpee's Super Steak Hybrid VFN tomato. This 80-day-rated tomato is not only large in size, it has excellent flavor and good disease resistance (VFN). You may also want to consider Beefmaster VFN, another 80-day-rated tomato. The 80-day-rating means that it should be producing ripe tomatoes approximately 80 days after transplanting into the garden. Here in New Mexico that often occurs during the time that our temperatures have become hot. Some tomatoes, especially those which produce larger fruits, cease production when the temperatures climb. You may want to plant some of the smaller fruited tomatoes to maintain production through the heat. The cherry tomato types seem to continue bearing tomatoes regardless of temperature conditions.

Dickerson has gathered information on tomatoes in New Mexico by growing them himself and by sending questionnaires to Master Gardeners and other gardeners around New Mexico. The tomatoes recommended above and others are listed in the publication, "Growing Zones, Recommended Crop Varieties, and Planting and Harvesting Information for Home Vegetable Gardens in New Mexico" (Circular 457-B). This publication is available from your local Cooperative Extension Service office. There is an Extension office in each county in New Mexico. (Web users can find their county office online.)

Marisa Y. Thompson, PhD, is the Extension Horticulture Specialist, in the Department of Extension Plant Sciences at the New Mexico State University Los Lunas Agricultural Science Center, email:, office: 505-865-7340, ext. 113.


For more gardening information, visit the NMSU Extension Horticulture page at Desert Blooms and the NMSU Horticulture Publications page.

Send gardening questions to Southwest Yard and Garden - Attn: Dr. Marisa Thompson at, or at the Desert Blooms Facebook.

Please copy your County Extension Agent and indicate your county of residence when you submit your question!