Better Boy Tomato

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For more than 50 years, Better Boy Tomato has been a household name in the tomato patch.

In fact, more than 2,000 home gardeners named Better Boy one of the “Best Tomatoes to Grow” in a 2009 Mother Earth News poll.

There are several reasons why it’s become a classic.

Better Boy is one of the most trusted tomato varieties in terms of disease resistance and reliability.

Plus it’s widely adaptable, meaning it produces well in nearly any climate.

And it’s one of best tasting slicing tomatoes available.

“Better Boy” is synonymous with volume

But probably most of all, it’s known to be an incredibly prolific performer in the home garden. Better Boy plants yield LOTS of tomatoes. Champion home gardener Charles H. Wilber grew Better Boys to win the 1987 Guinness Book of World Records for the largest amount of tomatoes per plant – 342 pounds of fruit from just one Better Boy plant!

Where Better Boy came from

Better Boy was bred and marketed as an improved version of Big Boy, the first hybrid tomato marketed by W. Atlee Burpee Seed Company.

It's a cross between Teddy Jones (a large, pink beefsteak from the midwest) and a red parent (which one is a corporate secret). 

Seed industry tradition holds it that when breeder John Peto left Burpee in the 1940s-50s, he took Teddy Jones seeds with him. John formed Petoseed (now a subsidiary of Seminis Seeds) where Better Boy was bred.

Today, Better Boy is touted as Burpee’s best-selling tomato seed.

Special tips for growing Better Boys

  • The earliest fruit from Better Boys are often the biggest. But as indeterminates, Better Boys produce all season.
  • Better Boy plants grow about one inch a day.
  • Better Boys are climbers. Cage or stake plants to get biggest yield, especially in areas with longer growing season. They continue to grow until frost. (Check out different tomato cages to find the right ones for you and your garden.) 

More about Better Boy seeds and plants. Click here.

Better Boy Tomato
Type: Hybrid
Origin: USA
Days to maturity: 72-75 days
Season: Mid-season
Foliage/habit: dense; prevents sunscald
Fruit color: bright red
Fruit shape/size: globe, smooth, round, 8-16 ounces
Disease resistance: V (Verticillium Wilt), F (Fusarium Wilt), N (Nematodes); some seed companies offer Better Boy Tomato seeds also resistant to A (Alternaria) and St (Stemphylium – Gray Leaf Spot).
Yield: extremely high
Taste: succulent, juicy, meaty
Other notes: Better Boy is an outstanding slicing tomato and one of the most prolific producers in the tomato garden.

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