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2014 All-America Selection Vegetable Winners

submitted by Sarah Browning, UNL Extension Educator

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For 2014, AAS has announced four vegetable award winners, 'Fantastico' tomato, 'Chef's Choice Orange' tomato, 'Mama Mia Giallo' pepper and 'Mascotte' bean.

'Fantastico' tomato is a must for any market grower or home gardener looking for an early-maturing, high-yielding grape tomato with built-in Late Blight Tolerance. Long clusters of sweet, flavorful fruits are held toward the outside of the plant, making them very easy to harvest. Fruits are also resist cracking. High yielding plants produce up to 12 pounds of ripe fruit.

Bred for small gardens, plants are determinate and work great in hanging baskets and container gardens, as well as in small gardens. Best grown in a cage to provide some plant support, but can also be grown in a large patio container or an 18-inch hanging basket. Available from Jung and Park Seed.

'Chef's Choice Orange' tomato hybrid is derived from the popular heirloom Amana Orange which matures late in the season. Now you can experience the wonderful flavor of an orange heirloom tomato in only 75 days from transplant. Average size fruits are 12 ounces but can weigh up to 1 pound. Large 5 foot tall plants are indeterminate and the leaves cover fruit well to protect from sunburn. Its disease resistance is an added bonus.

Chef's Choice Orange has a wonderful bright, almost neon, internal color and superior flesh taste and texture for an early maturing orange tomato. Excellent for soups and sauces because the intense color does not fade or discolor when cooked. Home chefs are going to love cooking with this variety as well as eating it fresh. Available from Jung and Park Seed.

'Mama Mia Giallo' pepper is a very early maturing yellow, sweet Italian pepper. Long tapered fruits have easy-to-remove skin and nice sweet flavor. It's an excellent pepper, either fresh, grilled or roasted. The bright yellow/gold fruit are produced on sturdy dark green bushy plants with excellent coverage from sunburn. These 10-24" plants take up less space and offer disease tolerance to Tobacco mosaic virus.

As with all peppers, they prefer full sun and warm growing conditions. 85 days from transplant to harvest. Available from Jung and Park Seed.

'Mascotte' bean is the first AAS winning bean since 1991. This compact variety is perfect for today's small-space gardens. Plants reach 10-24 inches tall. Mascotte is a bush bean producing 5-6" long, slender pods that stay above the foliage for easy harvest. This bean also has white showy flowers for ornamental value during bloom time. Judges appreciated the crunchiness and taste of this bean as well as the plentiful harvest all season long.

Its root system is ideal for patio containers and window boxes, and this versatile variety performs well in garden beds too. That means you can raise delicious beans in any outside space. The French Mascotte (like its English translation "mascot") is a symbol of good luck and was chosen for the variety's gardener-friendly habit. 50 days from seed to harvest. Available from Cook's Garden, Harris, Jung, Park and Stokes Seed.

Seed sources contact information.

  • Cooks Garden,
  • Harris Seeds,
  • J.W. Jung Seed Company,
  • Park Seed,
  • Stokes Seed, Ltd.,

This resource was added April 2014 and appeared in the Lincoln Journal Star Newspaper Sunday edition. For information on reproducing this article or using any photographs or graphics, read the Terms of Use statement

University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension in Lancaster County is your on-line yard and garden educational resource. The information on this Web site is valid for residents of southeastern Nebraska. It may or may not apply in your area. If you live outside southeastern Nebraska, visit your local Extension office

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