Who doesnâ€™t love tomatoes that are relatively easy to grow, and bear a bright, tasty fruit? The Yellow Pear tomato is all that and much more – no points for guessing where the name comes from, though!
Although pear tomatoes come in orange and red variants, the yellow ones are the most common. Gardeners, both experienced and beginners, love to grow this variety in their gardens because of their unique cute shapes and colors.
If youâ€™re looking to add a new variety of tomatoes to your garden this year, let me tell you why this tomato variant may be the perfect fit for you. Read on to know more!
History of Yellow Pear Tomatoes
Although itâ€™s difficult to determine the exact year when humans started cultivating this variety of tomatoes, some sources claim that itâ€™s as old as the fur trade which started in the 16th century. During this time, Europe began to plant pear tomatoes from the Americas.
However, the first record of them being grown was in 1805 by renowned biologist Christiaan Hendrik Persoon. Yellow tomatoes were then introduced to the western world and became popular in North America pretty quickly. By 1847, it was one of the three tomato varieties that was widely cultivated in the USA. In 1998, there were 25 variants of the Yellow Pears offered by the Seed Savers Exchange (SSE), the leader in heirloom seed preservation and a partner of heirloom tomato gardeners.
Characteristics of the Yellow Pear Tomato
Yellow Pear tomato plants belong to the indeterminate heirloom tomato group. This tomato variety bears distinctively mild-flavored, pear-shaped tomatoes.
Yellow Pears are a mid-season plant. The fruits will be plump, ripe, and ready to be picked at about the 70 to 80-day mark.
The ripe fruits of these small, yellow pear-shaped tomatoes have a sweet, juicy, and mild flavor that makes them the perfect tomatoes for fresh salads and summer sandwiches.
When they are ripe and ready to be harvested, these bite-sized tomatoes will grow to between 1 and 2 inches in length. Each fruit weighs about an ounce.
Yellow Pear tomatoes grow well in almost all zones from 2 to 12. Initially sow the seed indoors for 6 to 8 weeks before the average last frost date. Once the seedlings germinate, tomato cultivation can be moved outdoors once all the danger of frost has passed and the soilâ€™s temperature is at least 60 degrees Fahrenheit.
Size and Spacing
The seeds take a couple of weeks â€” around 2 to 3 â€” to germinate, and will be 4 to 6 inches by week 8.
When youâ€™re planting them outside, make sure to give them ample space to grow, approximately 36 inches in between.
Keep in mind that Yellow Pear tomatoes are indeterminate vines, which means they can reach up to 12 feet in height. Make sure that you have a support structure ready, like a wire tomato cage. If theyâ€™re left to grow on the ground, they can become susceptible to pests and insects.
Since Yellow Pears are self-pollinating like most heirloom tomatoes, they only need natural pollinators like honeybees, bumblebees, and the wind.
The following sections will provide highlights about tomato care. 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.
The proper care for Yellow Pear tomato plants doesnâ€™t entail anything extraordinary. Just give them normal care and a support structure to help them grow properly.
When transferring them outdoors, pick a sunny spot as they grow best in full sunlight â€” 6 or more hours a day will be sufficient. A shade cloth or similar protection may be needed when it gets very hot in summer.
Soil conditions need to be soft, well-tilled, and full of nutrients. Quality peat-based soil with compost will give you a successful tomato crop. It also needs slightly acidic soil with a pH of 5 to 6 for the best results. Since this plant is not deeply rooted, its soil requirements donâ€™t need to be more than 4 to 5 inches to grow.
Youâ€™ll want to avoid extremes in soil moisture since it can cause calcium deficiency in your tomato fruits and a black tissue to form on the surface where rot can enter.
Once they are planted, water them regularly. During the hottest summer weather, make sure that the soil is kept moist with regular watering. You can also use a shade cloth if required. Using mulch soil can help retain moisture.
Tomatoes require specific nutrients (such as calcium) to produce their best crops of fruit. To learn how to determine what your tomatoes need and when they need it, consult our ultimate tomato fertilizer guide.
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.
The Yellow Pear bears resistant tomatoes that donâ€™t succumb to common diseases. More specifically, it is resistant to Fusarium and Verticillium wilts.
To learn how to detect, treat, and take steps to prevent diseases, read our tomato diseases guide.
These tomatoes are susceptible to pests like worms, caterpillars, and aphids. Even some birds prize the tasty yellow fruits (canâ€™t blame them!). However, for an experienced gardener, these problems are easy to handle with common measures like netting, soap sprays, and similar techniques.
For information to help you spot, eliminate, and deter 15 different pests, visit our guide on common tomato pests.
When to Harvest Yellow Pear Tomatoes?
You will know your Yellow Pears are ready when they come off the vine easily and have a tell-tale golden-yellow color without any green. Youâ€™ll need a 1-2 week period for ripe tomatoes to develop.
Most plants continue to bear fruit up to two months after the first harvest. This, however, depends on the condition of the soil and the weather. This is a vigorous plant that can survive the coldness of fall so expect to enjoy the fruits of these productive vines for a long time!
Common Uses for Yellow Pear Tomatoes
These mild-flavored, pear-shaped tomatoes are most commonly consumed whole as a snack or sliced and diced into smaller pieces which are eaten fresh.
What Does This Tomato Taste Like?
Yellow Pear tomatoes have a sweet and juicy taste that is mild and not overpowering.
Whatever you can do with regular popular tomatoes, you can also do with Yellow Pear-shaped tomatoes. It gives pastas and salsas a less intense flavor.
Because of their more delicate flavor, these tomatoes make a great table-fruit that can be enjoyed any time of day. You can also add tomatoes in salads with green bell peppers, arugula leaves, and greens. Many chefs prefer this variety of tomato as a salad topper for its appetizing color and subtle flavor.
Canning / Freezing / Drying
This variant of tomatoes can be dried and stored, and also used to make fresh tomato preserves.
Health Benefits of Yellow Pear Tomatoes
Yellow pear tomatoes have beta-carotene thatâ€™s known to neutralize cancer-causing free radicals. They also contain vitamin C, niacin, folate, and potassium which are great for regulating blood pressure, and improving nerve function and muscle control.
Where to Buy Yellow Pear Tomato Plants or Seeds
Yellow Pear tomato seeds are widely available in online stores, including Amazon.
Where to Buy Yellow Pear Tomatoes
While they may be difficult to find in regular grocery stores, youâ€™re more likely to find them in farmersâ€™ markets, specialty produce shops, and farm stands.
Wrapping Up: The Perfect Garden Addition for Tomato Lovers
Yellow Pear tomatoes are among the best varieties of tomatoes. They provide nutrition while being delicious. It may take a little extra effort to care for these plants, but itâ€™s worth it in the long run. Apart from adding diversity to your palate, they also add to your gardenâ€™s aesthetics by being the prettiest tomatoes with their bright colors.
Have you grown Yellow Pear tomatoes or do you have a favorite place to buy them? Let us know in the comments section below! To read about other tasty tomatoes, click here for our other tomato blog posts.