If you’re a tomato lover and reside in USDA zone 9, boy are you in luck! A large variety of tomatoes thrive in your warmer climate. Zone 9 tomato plants may take a little extra TLC, but there are still plenty of hot weather tomatoes to choose from. If you’re new to the region or just want to pick up some pointers on growing tomatoes in zone 9, keep reading for information about tomatoes for zone 9.
About Growing Tomatoes in Zone 9
The neat thing about zone 9 tomato plants is that you can start the seeds directly outside. That said, you will almost always have better outcome if you transplant seedlings. Tomatoes for zone 9 can be started indoors for later transplant as early as late January through April and again in August.
Tomatoes come in all shapes and sizes, from the tiny cherry and grape to the enormous slicing heirlooms and somewhere in the middle, the romas. Which variety you plant is really all up to your taste buds, but selecting a variety of tomatoes will give you plenty to choose from for every need.
A visit to a local nursery or even the farmers market can help you decide which tomatoes to plant. They will likely have varieties of hot weather tomatoes that are proven to thrive in your region and, like all gardening enthusiasts, will be only too happy to chat to you about their successes and less so, their failures.
Zone 9 Tomato Plants
You have both your medium and large beefsteak slicers to choose from. Of the medium varieties, a favorite is Early Girl, a disease resistant, high yielding plant with sweet flavored, meaty fruit. Stupice is another favored for its cold tolerance as well as disease resistance with smaller fruit with a sweet/acidic taste.
Larger beefsteak tomatoes take longer to mature than those above, but the sheer size of the fruit just makes a body proud. Look for disease and crack resistant cultivars such as Bingo, a bushy, determinate type of beefsteak perfect for container gardening. Or try Early Pick Hybrid, with its vigorous growth, disease resistance and big, rich, meaty tomatoes.
Other options for potential slicing tomatoes are:
- Omar’s Lebanese
- Tidwell German
- Neves Azorean Red
- Large Pink Bulgarian
- Aunt Gertie’s Gold
- Cherokee Green
- Cherokee Purple
Paste or roma types
Options for paste or roma tomatoes include:
- Mama Leone
- Martino’s Roma
Cherry tomatoes are the most reliable producers with high yields that ripen early and continue to produce throughout the growing season. A tried and true variety is Sungold, a disease resistant, early maturing, sweet orange cherry tomato.
Super Sweet 100 Hybrid is another favorite that is also disease resistant and produces large yields of sweet cherry tomatoes that are extremely high in vitamin C. Other options for cherry tomatoes are:
- Black Cherry
- Green Doctors
- Chadwick’s Cherry
- Gardener’s Delight
- Isis Candy
- Dr. Carolyn