With tomatoes around the country ruined by blight in recent years, the arrival of the completely blight resistant tomato will save veg growers everywhere from a fruitless season.
'Crimson Crush' is a standard indeterminate tomato developed to be grown outside in the veg garden, allotment or container. The vivid red fruits are large - they weigh in at up to about 7oz/200g each, and are carried in generous trusses.
Its exceptional disease resistance is the result of the fact that this is the first variety to have two different resistance genes instead of just one. Just to be technical for a moment: it has the PH2 and PH3 genes which make it resistant to all common British blight strains including what are known as “Pink 6” and “Blue 13”, the strains which have decimated outdoor tomato crops in recent years.
But - the crucial question - what about the taste? Suttons Seeds, who are introducing 'Crimson Crush', told me: “The taste is outstanding, far superior to any other disease resistant variety. A very rich tomatoey (if that's even a word) flavour; taste is very subjective but this tastes like a tomato should. It's a variety that was selected for its excellent flavour before we were even aware of its blight resistance.”
'Crimson Crush' was developed as collaboration between legendary British tomato breeder Simon Crawford, who developed 'Red Alert', the first bush tomato worth growing, and a PhD student at Bangor University. It was first spotted in a glasshouse in Yorkshire but then in a trials field in North Wales it stood out as a shining green and red beacon surrounded by blight infested tomato plants.
You can order plants of 'Crimson Crush' tomato from Suttons Seeds.
** Please note the contents of this blog reflect the views of its author and are not necessarily those of the RHS **