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Old July 27, 2008   #1
OmahaJB
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Default Big Beef Hybrid parents?

I've been impressed with the plant vigor, disease resistance, and fruit set so far, and am wondering what the parents are for this hybrid. I did an internet search and found good info on Big Beef but not what varieties were used to make the hybrid. One of the websites said it was made using "old fashioned breeding techniques". Sounds pretty fancy.

The tomatoes have not started ripening yet (late transplant in the garden), so I have no idea if the flavor is good, but I do like that it's a strong plant with lots of tomatoes growing on it. And the disease resistance has been terrific. I also am growing 2 Better Boy plants and neither has been as impressive and I've even had to take a couple lower branches off due to disease.

It's resistant to quite a few diseases, as listed by one of the websites I just visited (forget which one):
Verticillium, Fusarium Race 1 & 2, Stemphylium, Tobacco Mosaic Virus, Nematode, & Alternaria Stem Canker.

The reason I'm posting this here is I'm considering having a 'little fun' by trying to dehybridize this one. I do realize it'll be hard to get the results I'd like to get, as it could lose some of it's disease resistance and other good traits.

And I can't help be curious about which parent or parents gave Big Beef hybrid it's great disease resistance, plant vigor, and ability to produce so well. I'll be curious to finally taste one of these hybrid tomatoes to see if the flavor in any way compliments the other good traits.

Has anyone here tried dehybridizing this one?

Jeff
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Old July 27, 2008   #2
carolyn137
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Big Beef (PSX 76186) - Breeder and vendor: Petoseed. Characteristics: large fruited, indeterminate Beefsteak type, earlier, more productive and much more disease resistant than Beefsteak or Ponderosa Red. Resistance: verticillium wilt race 1, fusarium wilt races 1 and 2, alternaria stem canker, gray leaf spot, nematodes, tobacco mosaic virus. Similar: Better Boy, Beefmaster. 1991.

*****

Jeff, above is the blurb about Big Beef F1 from the NCSU Cultivar list.

You aren't going to find the parental inputs to this variety, or any hybrid b'c that's proprietary information that's not published.

it sounds to me that they might have just upgraded Beefsteak, aka Red ponderosa, aka Crimson Cushion by breeding in some disease tolerant genes.

And of course some of those disease tolerances are only meaningful if someone is growing in an area where they are found. And even at that tolerance does not mean resistance and often it gives the plant just a week or two more which is fine for commercial growers since it gives enough time for the Brix readings to reach the proper amount of soluble sugars.

There is an OP version of Big Beef that 's listed in the SSE Yearbooks and apprently it was dehybridized by 1998.

And I wanted to ask what disease resistance you're talking about in OH b'c most of those disease tolerances listed for Big beef wouldn't really apply to OH b'c the diseases aren't found there.

How I wish we had some great varieties that were tolerant to the most common fungal and bacterial foliage diseases, but we don't. And it's those foliage diseases that almost everyone has problems with. Sigh.

Hope that helps.
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Old July 27, 2008   #3
OmahaJB
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Carolyn,

Yes, you've provided very helpful information. Thanks!
First, I noticed I started this thread in the wrong forum. Should have been started in the Crosstalk area. Oops..

You probably don't realize this, but I think you've just opened up alot of eyes with your comment regarding bacterial and fungal foliage diseases. More inexperienced gardeners such as myself hear all of the disease names, and quite frankly when we get fungal foliage problems on our plants, assume it's one of the diseases. So you've just taught me a good lesson. Thanks again for your input. It definitely changes my perspective on plant diseases. And I'm glad to hear Ohio does not have to worry about the diseases as much as other parts of the country unfortunately do.

I've been back searching the internet a little more and noticed a couple comments regarding Big Beef having good taste. Makes me even less patient to get ripened fruit. Although I am a little skeptical because I don't recall any comments about Big Beef whenever folks have posted regarding good flavored hybrids.

And if it does have good taste, I'm surprised the OP seed you mentioned being in the SSE yearbook, hasn't been spread around a little more by now. However, I do realize the heirloom OP's would still probably overshadow it there.

At this point I couldn't be happier with the plant vigor and lack of 'bacteria & fungal diseases'. And of course the production so far.

Just waitin' for the tastin'...

Jeff
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Old July 27, 2008   #4
kygreg
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I have grown the hybrid Big Beef for 3 or 4 years; no problems with diseases; productive (8-16 oz range); nice looking fruit; and good taste and texture; I prefer the taste of the Porterhouse Hybrid, but its not nearly as productive for me.
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Old July 27, 2008   #5
OmahaJB
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Thanks for the input, Greg. Once in awhile I like to dream up little experiments, but rarely try them out.
Yesterday I was wondering how I could help get Big Beef's disease resistance, productivity and plant vigor into the dwarf project. So if it doesn't have knock your socks off taste, it wouldn't necessarily be a deal breaker, because that could come from the dwarf variety.

Like I said I like to dream things up like this. 48 hours later it could seem like a bad idea. In this case it would take years to stabilize a Big Beef dehybridization, unless someone who's a member of SSE acquired seeds for the already OP Big Beef. It might even be worth it to me to join SSE just to get those seeds if I decide to go forward with this!

So far I've grown 3 varieties of F2 seed, and only one of them looked like a fairly strong plant for a dwarf to me, and that was Wishful. And that one ended up with big BIG dark grey or black blotches on the leaves while the tomatoes were ripening. I found out today though that it must have been a fungus rather than a disease.

Anyway, more pondering to do....

Jeff
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Old July 27, 2008   #6
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gary ibsen / tomatofest offers dehybridized Big Beef.

is this the same as stabelized?
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Old July 27, 2008   #7
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Big Beef is a very good tasting tomato.
It is an excellent tasting hybrid.
Probably my favorite hybrid of all, after Sungold!

You may not necessarily need to add disease tolerance to the dwarves.... some
may already have it! Tasmanian Chocolate, which has gotten rave reviews lately,
is a tomato producing monster. Up to 14 oz tomatoes on a 3' plant that taste
similar to Cherokee Chocolate. It is also showing some disease tolerance to
Cucumber Mosaic Virus. I noticed the foliage showing the symptoms of CMV, but
it seems to have outgrown/tolerated it and kept on going.

Lee
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Old July 28, 2008   #8
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levad, Yes, that OP Big Beef from TomatoFest is stabilized. Someone sent me a PM to let me know TomatoFest has been offering it for awhile and that it's been grown out for at least 7 years, and is very similar to the F1 (the hybrid version). I'll have to check them out.

Lee, That Tasmanian Chocolate does sound like a real winner. The dwarf variety I grew that was weakest for me (although it was indoors), was Stumpy for some reason. And honestly, I was thinking out loud when I started this thread. One of those 'what if's". Besides using it in the dwarf project I was also thinking it would be a good one for dehybridizing to have it year to year from homegrown seed. But that's already been taken care of! I'm late to the party...

Jeff
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Old July 28, 2008   #9
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Carolyn mentioned the site about the Big Beef... as follows:



http://cuke.hort.ncsu.edu/cucurbit/w.../tomatoai.html


Quote:
Big Beef (PSX 76186) - Breeder and vendor: Petoseed. Characteristics: large fruited, indeterminate Beefsteak type, earlier, more productive and much more disease resistant than Beefsteak or Ponderosa Red. Resistance: verticillium wilt race 1, fusarium wilt races 1 and 2, alternaria stem canker, gray leaf spot, nematodes, tobacco mosaic virus. Similar: Better Boy, Beefmaster. 1991.
That PSX number means something. Primarily it is the experimental number given to a tomato on trial. Most of those numbered lines fall by the wayside. Petoseed is closely connected to Burpee, Seminis, Monsanto, etc., but that is not too important. What is important is that the protection of that hybrid (Big Beef) will likely go on for quite a while.




Also, the Beefsteak type is a good way to describe it. The public likes that name and why waste it on an heirloom? Notice the association with the open-pollinated Beefsteak and Ponderosa. But to gather fans, the association to hybrids such as Better Boy and Beefmaster is important. They may, or may not be related, but the type of plant/fruit is so similar that it may, in fact, be related.



If you note the disease resistance monikers listed with Big Beef:
verticillium wilt race 1, fusarium wilt races 1 and 2, alternaria stem canker, gray leaf spot, nematodes, tobacco mosaic virus
That list of alphabeticals may give you a hint to one or more of the possible parents.



For instance; if you search beefsteak types that are open pollinated and have some of that disease tolerance, you may find this variety: Single Beefsteak.


Quote:
Single Beefsteak VFN - Breeder and vendor: W. Atlee Burpee Co. Characteristics: open pollinated, very large fruit with small blossom scar. Resistance: verticillium, fusarium, and nematodes. Similar: Super Steak. Adaptation: wide.
Single Beefsteak was used in a hybrid that was once popular. Note the similar variety compared with Single Beefsteak VFN? It is Super Steak. Note below:


PVP certificate no. 8200028. 1983.

Plant Variety Protection Certificates 8/19/82 expired 1999.



Single Beefsteak could be a parent of Big Beef, but no guarantee. I could not find a PVP on
Big Beef. Single Beefsteak was released about 8 years before Big Beef, certainly enough time to test a new hybrid. Hint Hint.

With Big Beef as opposed to Super Steak...It may be that it is easier not to patent the cross but just maintain proprietary control. As Big Beef was introduced in 1991, seventeen years later on a PVP would expire this year! Does that automatically mean you can make your own Big Beef hybrid seed? NO!!!



Why not try to get some seed of the Single Beefsteak VFN open pollinated tomato to make crosses to the Big Beef F-1 hybrid? You may get earlier and bigger yields due to the Semi-determinate vine growth.



Quote:
Single Beefsteak VFN
Primary Color Red
Leaf Shape Regular Leaf
Growth Type Semi-determinate
Reproduction Open-pollinated
Days To Maturity Mid (69-80 days)
Type Standard
Size Large (over one pound
http://209.85.141.104/search?q=cache...lnk&cd=1&gl=us

Note how Big Beef is carrying the Tobacco Mosaic (T) gene. Dominant, so any beefsteak OP would work in a hybrid with Single Beefsteak VFN to get a hybrid with VFNT, but it would be better if the other line did not carry the (N) gene, as it carries way too much genetic garbage,(reduced fruit size, mishapened fruit, etc). A Beef Steak with VFT and another F gene with alternaria stem canker, gray leaf spot would do the trick.



Quote:
Giant Beefsteaks Varieties
  • Big Beef VFNT
  • Beefmaster VFN
  • Burpee Supersteak VFN
VFN indicates the variety is resistant to Verticillium wilt, Fusarium wilt (generally both races of the Fusarium wilt fungus), and root-knot nematodes.
Nice to know someone is talking about a segregant of Big Beef, a re-combinant, a selfed out version, an alternate stabilized progeny line that carries at least some of the original hybrid. Technically, it can't be a de-hybridized parent of either side, but it could be close enough to get by on descriptions alone. That may mean something or not. It does not guarantee any genetic resistance of either parent, and it could even be inferior or superior to either parent. But if it has the (N) gene, I doubt it. Selection pressure where nematodes are not a problem usually favors the non resistant version. Note Gary Ibsen's Big Beef:


Quote:
Tomatofest’s Big Beef.


This is a de-hybridized version of an American favorite. These large, juicy, fruits combine old-fashioned beefsteak flavor with heavy yields. 1-pound, round to globe- shaped. Flavor is full and hearty with lots of sweet juice balanced with that wonderful tomato acidity. These giants slice up perfectly for big sandwiches. Fruit stays large even at the end of a long harvest season.
Once again, I rather dislike the term de-hybridize. You can't break the hybrid done to the original two parents, unless you know a lot about the parents and can compare side by side with them. In the case of Monsanto, that won't happen. One could easily develop many so-called de-hybridized versions and recross them to see if the hybrid is similar. I suggest to offer a bit of humor to the OP version and call it a "Knock off Open Pollinated" version of the original hybrid.



So few of us can identify the VFNTst..blah...blah genes in the actual plant derived from the original hybrid. Note that Gary does not claim any VFNT alphabeticals?




http://209.85.141.104/search?q=cache...lnk&cd=1&gl=us
This link will illustrate how tough it is to identify lines that have the disease resistance and relevance as a possible parent. If you add (open pollinated variety) to the mix, you may note that OP versions of Beefsteak go back about 25 years. It will be hard to find to find OP versions from the professionals in later searches. That a few people wish to take a hybrid to an OP version is commendable, but I feel there should be a number or some other moniker to indicated the history and development.

If someone wants me to make a facsimile hybrid by using Single Beefsteak VFN to a Ibsen or SSE version of an OP of Big Beef, let me know. Otherwise you may wish to do it yourself. I could probably customize a few F-1 seeds just for fun.

Tom Wagner
Sorry for the long transcription here. Just because I started saving seed from tomato hybrids, mine and commercial hybrids like Big Boy back in the early to mid 1950's; my experience doesn't mean a thing when it comes to the selfing of Big Beef.
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Old July 29, 2008   #10
carolyn137
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So that's what PSX means.

Thanks for your post Tom, for I always learn something new. And I don't mean just the PSX explanation.
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Old July 30, 2008   #11
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Quote:
Thanks for your post Tom, for I always learn something new.
Carolyn,

Learning something new is the main reason I answer some posts. If it just to respond with what I already know, I may not even be motivated.

The selfing of Big Beef and to ID possible parents is close to something I have thought about for years. A few times in the past, I would talk to a tomato breeder and say something like @$%&*%@ is probably the parent of such and such a hybrid, and the breeder would inadvertently remark, "How did you know that?" I would then say that I did not know actually, but took a rather wild guess. The breeder would then say, "Don't tell anyone!"

I am doing some work with Bingo and PSX 36179. A grower in SW Washington wanted me to "save" these varieties since the hybrids were discontinued. I have these coming along nicely in the filial generations and have made test hybrids between the Bingo and 36179 OP's.

Last week when I was out to see the progress of about 150 different tomato clones in a greenhouse near Carnation. The grower wanted to know what I thought was reducing the yield of various tomatoes in his larger greenhouses. He had quite a few Green Zebras and some other varieties. But his best set of tomatoes was on.....Big Beef F-1....and he asked for my ideas on how to increase the set of Green Zebra. I told him to look at such and such #'d clones in the other greenhouse that were Green Zebra hybrids. He did and he will probably ask for those hybrids next year.

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Old July 18, 2019   #12
bigpinks
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Default BB Parents

I have about 20 BB plants in my clay soil garden this yr. They always amaze me setting so much fruit. I only allow 3 per cluster to improve size. Had bacon, egg, mayo and BB on toast this morning. Would make a train take a dirt road. Wow!
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Old July 18, 2019   #13
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I got some BB OP seeds from Dale at Delectation of Tomatoes about 5 years ago. I can say without doubt that it is not resistant to spider mites, which ruined my grow of most all plants back then, so I can't really express a valid opinion on it. Since I have been growing BB F1's since then I should retry the OP to see how close they are. Big Beef is the only hybrid I grow besides Artisan's new ones.
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Old July 18, 2019   #14
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I love Big Beef! Good luck with your project! I'm doing the same thing this season with Chef's Choice Pink. I'll let you know how it goes....
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