On the hunt for a tomato plant variety that produces great slicers, abundant in flavor and resistant to many of the diseases that can hound your typical beefsteak variety? Look no further than at the Jersey Boy Tomato!
Bred specifically for blemish resistance, beauty, and all the best in terms of flavor and appearance that tomatoes have to offer, the Jersey Boy Tomato is a new classic that’s popular with growers and consumers everywhere! Read on to learn more about what makes the Jersey Boy Tomato a slice above the rest!
History of the Jersey Boy Tomato
An absolutely scrumptious slicer tomato, the Jersey Boy Tomato variety was created via the careful crossbreeding of beefsteak tomato varieties Sudduth’s Brandywine and Rutgers, by popular seed company Burpee Seeds. The purpose was simple: to create a delicious breed of succulent beefsteak tomatoes with all the flavor profile of the Sudduth’s Brandywine and Rutgers, but with resistance to the diseases and blemishes often found in its parent varieties.
The breeding experiment was an overwhelming success, and the Jersey Boy Tomato made its debut appearance as commercial seed registered in 2014, with its broader release taking place in 2015. It has since become a vastly popular variety for gardeners and consumers alike!
Characteristics of the Jersey Boy Tomato
In many ways, the Jersey Boy Tomato is considered to be a “super tomato”. It takes much of what makes its parent breeds, the Sudduth’s Brandywine and Rutgers, so appealing—and blows them out of the water! Powerfully flavorful with that classic sweetish sour tomato tang thanks to its Brandywine roots, abundantly fragrant with a famously earthy scent, fantastically productive throughout its mature season—with fruits of medium to large size which make for perfect slicing—and sporting the Rutgers’ bright, vivid red hue, the Jersey Boy is a showcase of every aspect that makes tomatoes delicious and attractive for eating and growing!
Jersey Boy Specific
Due to its beefsteak heirloom roots, you’ll seldom find a better tomato for slicing than the Jersey Boy Tomato. This is the perfect sandwich tomato in every way; its firm flesh, crisp taste, and succulent juiciness make it ideal as a component of lunch meat sandwiches, BLTs, burgers, or even a simple tomato and mayonnaise sandwich on a hot summer day!
In addition, thanks to its immense flavor profile, the Jersey Boy Tomato will make a great component for many sauces, pasta dishes, fresh salads, and salsas. It can be cooked down in the skin for sauces and curries, or blanched, with the skin then removed for easier access to the fruit’s inner flesh.
In addition, due to that great slicing appeal, the Jersey Boy Tomato can be used in fruit and veggie trays, as an ingredient in savory tomato pies, or as part of a charcuterie spread or in a dish such as a caprese salad, served alongside thickly-sliced mozzarella with fresh basil, a balsamic glaze drizzle, and toasted bread. The Jersey Boy Tomato can also be canned for future use and dried in slices, holding up well to both processes.
The Jersey Boy Tomato also makes a great snacking tomato out of hand thanks to its firm flesh and tangy taste! This tomato holds a lot of raw appeal for adults and kiddos alike who are especially big fans of that unique tomato taste.
Tomatoes are an absolute buffet of good health benefits, and the Jersey Boy Tomato is no exception! These juicy, delicious fruits have been known to help prevent chronic diseases such as cancer, heart disease, and diabetes, as well as helping keep your digestion regular and preventing constipation.
Tomatoes also contain fantastic amounts of lycopene, which lowers bad cholesterol and raises good cholesterol, delays the development of cataracts, and improves bone health; lycopene is also what gives tomatoes their beautiful, assertive color and boosts their nutritional value—something Jersey Boy Tomatoes have in particular abundance, as noted by their glorious crimson sheen!
Tomatoes like the Jersey Boy variety also contain a great amount of vitamins, such as Vitamins A, C, B, and K, minerals like potassium and magnesium, and antioxidants—which can help protect the body from many degenerative issues and free radicals that cause harm to your system.
Growing At Home
The Jersey Boy Tomato is an indeterminate variety that is great for growing in your home garden! Its particular appeal comes not only from its high production rate, promising a boisterous crop throughout the season, but also from its ease to grow and its resistance to diseases and blemishes that can be more common among beefsteak and heirloom varieties.
If you’re beginning with a seed, your Jersey Boy should be started indoors in early March and transplanted outdoors in May, once any threat of frost has passed; if beginning with a live plant, you can plant in the ground in May.
The Jersey Boy Tomato plant comes to maturity in about 70 to 75 days, growing to a spread of about 40 inches and a height that is roughly the same. As an indeterminate species, the Jersey Boy Tomato plant will do best with a cage or trellis to help direct its upward growth!
Jersey Boy Tomatoes themselves are on the medium to large side, weighing in anywhere from 8 to 15 ounces but usually nestling comfortably in the 10 to 15 ounce range.
Sunlight / Soil
In addition to being planted in the spring, once any threat of frost has passed, your Jersey Boy Tomato plant will need to be set in loose, well-draining soil and given access to full sunlight and regular watering.
For a complete guide on optimal tomato plant care, from planting to harvesting and storage, please check out our article on How To Grow Tomatoes: The Complete Guide For the Best Tomatoes. Because Jersey Boys are beefsteak tomatoes, you may also be interested in our blog post on how to grow big tomatoes!
(Note: Due to its hybridized nature, the Jersey Boy Tomato plant does not seed, and its flowers are sterile.)
Fertilizing / Feeding
Tomatoes require specific nutrients (such as calcium) to produce their best crops of fruit. To learn how to determine what your tomatoes need, consulting our ultimate tomato fertilizer guide.
Pruning / Pinching
Pruning and pinching are a tomato care technique that can help your tomato put forth its best yield. But you need to know when to do this and what tomatoes need it. To help you with this, visit our pruning tomatoes guide.
Diseases and Pests
Sad, but true — if you grow tomatoes, you’ll probably have to deal with these issues. To learn how to detect, treat, and take steps to prevent diseases, read our tomato diseases guide. For information to help you spot, eliminate, and deter 15 different pests, visit our guide on common tomato pests.
Where To Buy The Jersey Boy Tomato
As a general best practice, you’ll want to look for Jersey Boy Tomato seeds or live plants at your local nurseries, farmer’s market, farm stands, grocers, etc. to ensure your plant is best acclimated to your area! However, if you prefer to search online, you can find Jersey Boy Tomato seeds and plants at retailers across the web as well.
Your best bet is to purchase a seed pack directly from Burpee Seeds, as they are the ones who bred this variety—there’s always great value in going to the source! You can purchase a Jersey Boy Tomato seed pack (containing 25 seeds) from Burpee Seeds’ website. (Note: You may occasionally find this seed to be out of stock in and around the early planting season.)
If you’re in search of a live Jersey Boy Tomato plant to purchase online, check out Easy to Grow Bulbs’ website, where they offer pre-potted plants available for order and shipping!
To Sum Up
For any gardeners—whether new to the work or veterans of the soil—who are on the hunt for a delicious powerhouse of a tomato that produces a bumper crop with minimal effort, and stands up magnificently against diseases and blemish, the Jersey Boy Tomato is sure to make a fantastic addition to your garden!
Have you grown this tomato variety before? What did you like most about it? We’d love to hear from you! Let us know your experience with growing Jersey Boy Tomatoes in the comments below! To read about other tomato varieties you can grow at home, click here for our tomato blog posts.