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John Baer Tomato

John Baer Tomato

Regular price $2.95 USD
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Certified Natural Grown
John Baer

75 days, indeterminate — The vines are hardy and very productive. Its fruit are red in color, almost perfectly globe to flattened-globe shaped, range from two to twelve ounces averaging about six ounces each, have smooth skin with firm, solid flesh, and an excellent flavor.

Originating from a single plant of 'Bonny Best', it was developed through fifteen years of selection[4] by market grower and seed producer Mr. John Baer of Baltimore County, Maryland. Having already developed the 'Greater Baltimore' tomato and releasing it through the J. Bolgiano Seed Company of Baltimore, Mr. Baer submitted this variety to Bolgiano who introduced it to the public in 1914 naming it in honor of its creator, 'John Baer'.[1,2]

It became very popular among home gardeners and was quickly added to the seed catalogs of many companies. The Grand Junction Seed Company of Grand Junction, Colorado dedicated a lot of space in their 1919 catalog to espouse all of the reasons why folks should grow the 'John Baer' tomato. They stated:
"This most wonderful tomato was first introduced by a large Eastern grower in 1914, and the seed was sold at $50.00 per pound. We listed it season before last for the first time, and as we were about the first to introduce it in the West we had some misgivings for fear it might not meet all the wonderful claims the growers made for it.

However, we are glad to say that John Baer has certainly made good, and stands today at the head of the list for an early and best all around tomato. The many good words and letters of recommendation we have received from growers, canners, market gardeners and others justify us in placing it at the head of the list. Our mail orders of this one tomato last season were more than for all the other tomatoes combined.
At one time was a leading canning variety. By the late 1930s, it had become the leading canning variety in New York, Michigan and southeastern Wisconsin where it consistently out-yielded other varieties.[3]

It should be noted that many seed companies list 'John Baer' and 'Bonny Best' as the same variety. This is incorrect. Although very similar due to their close genetic relationship, 'John Baer' is generally earlier to harvest. Our stock was grown out from USDA accession number PI 270192. Each packet contains approximately 20 seeds.
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  1. "The Pedigree of Varieties of Lycopersicon Esculentum Mill.," G. A. Kemp, Canada Department of Agriculture, Lethbridge, Alberta, April 20, 1960.
  2. "Yearbook of Agriculture," USDA, 1937.
  3. "Tomato Varieties," by Gordon Morrison, Michigan State College A.E.S., Special Bulletin 290, April 1938.
  4. J. Bolgiano & Son Seed Company, Baltimore, Maryland, 1914 Seed Annual.