After conducting extensive field trials across the country, All American Selections, or AAS, has released the 2018 national winners for the best performing vegetable varieties.
AAS is a nonprofit organization founded in 1932 to assess the performance of new and improved varieties for home gardeners. Plant winners are rigorously screened for their unique characteristics, adaptability to different zones in the country, growth habit, fruit quality, pest and disease tolerance, and other features. Here are the winners:
American Dream sweet corn
With maturity at 77 days after seeding, American Dream sweet corn won this year’s national winner. American Dream ranked as the top contender for its excellent germination success rate; robust growth, reaching 6-7 feet tall; very tender and sweet tasting bicolored kernels; and its 7-inch ears that are filled with kernels up to their tip. Seed source: Illinois Foundation Seeds.
Tomato Valentine F1
Eye-catching deep red fruits, with very sweet and firm flesh are the award-winning characteristic of the Valentine grape-type tomato. This hybrid grape tomato has indeterminate growth characteristics, reaching maturity in about 55 days after transplant, and they can hold longer on the vine without cracking. Seed source: Johnny’s selected seeds.
Red Racer tomato
Slightly larger than the grape-type tomato, Red Racer is a prolific yielder (68 fruits per plant) with a good balance of sweet/acid taste. Its determinate growth habit makes it an excellent fit for containers and small space garden settings. Red racer matures in about 57 days after transplant. Seed source: Earthwork seeds.
Asian Delight F1 pak choi
In comparison to other pak choi test varieties, Asian Delight is very slow to bolt, and can retain its standing quality longer than other varieties. It produces small- to medium-sized tasty heads (5-7 inches) that have prominent white stems and crumpled dark green leaves. Asian Delight takes 25-40 days to mature for harvest after transplanting. Seed source: Seed Solutions.
Roulette F1 habanero pepper
Get ready to surprise your neighbors with heatless habanero peppers. That’s right, Roulette habanero doesn’t make you cry but it still retains the flavor of a typical habanero. Roulette habaneros produce abundant, large-sized, thick-walled red fruits that can be eaten fresh or cooked. It takes 85 days to harvest after transplanting. Seed source: Seminis vegetable seeds.
For other AAS winners, visit all-americaselections.org/
Vijai Pandian is horticultural agent/educator for Brown County University of Wisconsin-Extension. For questions and advice, contact the Extension's Horticulture Help Desk at 920-391-4615 or firstname.lastname@example.org.