Tomato 'Red Lightning'

Lycopersicon lycopersicum

Family: Solanaceae (so-lan-AY-see-ee) (Info)
Genus: Lycopersicon (ly-koh-PER-see-kon) (Info)
Species: lycopersicum (ly-koh-PER-see-kum) (Info)
Cultivar: Red Lightning
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4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun


Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Seed Collecting:

N/A: plant does not set seed, flowers are sterile, or plants will not come true from seed

Growing Habit:


Fruit Shape:


Fruit Size:

Medium (under one pound)

Days to Maturity:

Mid (69-80 days)

Fruit Colors:




Seed Type:

American hybrid


Fresh, salad

Disease Resistance:

Unknown - Tell us

Leaf Type:

Regular Leaf

Foliage Color:

Unknown - Tell us

Bloom Characteristics:

Unknown - Tell us

Water Requirements:

Unknown - Tell us

Where to Grow:

Unknown - Tell us


This plant has been said to grow in the following regions:

Yellville, Arkansas

Tallahassee, Florida

Atlanta, Georgia

Clarksville, Indiana

Urbandale, Iowa

Georgetown, Massachusetts

Portland, Oregon

South Boston, Virginia

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Gardeners' Notes:


On Mar 12, 2010, rwouhaybi from Portland, OR wrote:

I grew 2 plants of this last year. They were very healthy plants and quite productive. The taste, though, was ok, nothing special. I will not grow them again.


On Dec 11, 2008, toughgardengeek from Bethpage, NY wrote:

Striking to look at. But otherwise not much flavour, poor texture, tough skin.


On Sep 4, 2007, dragonfly53 from (Terri ) South Boston, VA (Zone 7a) wrote:

It was a pretty tomato, after the fruits stopped getting the BER. However, it had tough skin, was golf ball sized and just didn't have tomato flavor. I roasted them along with Romas for sauce, they weren't worth eating raw and were kind of sour for salad/.


On Aug 2, 2007, davedigsdirt from Yellville, AR (Zone 6b) wrote:

Pretty but I'm not impressed with the taste at all. Sharp and too acidic. Small size and tough skins. But on the plus side - good production and no BER.


On Mar 31, 2007, DrDoolotz from Oxford, NS (Zone 5b) wrote:

I grew this tomato from seed in 2006. The tomatoes are truly beautiful to look at and the plants produced a fair amount of fruit, but I grow tomatoes for the flavor, and these really didn't quite make the cut for me. They add nice color to a salad but the flavor is, well, very ordinary, in my opinion. My tastes tend towards a sweeter tomato, but with a lot of flavor to it. These were in my opinion very mild. Nice, but not a re-grow with all the other bi-colored tomatoes that I prefer.


On Sep 11, 2006, MikeyJoe from Clarksville, IN wrote:

This website lists Red Lightning as a"open pollinated, commercial heirloom", Burpee however maintains that is a hybrid. I have heard speculation from several knowledgeable sources that Red Lightning is indeed an open pollinated variety, most likely a cross between one of the Zebras and another unknown variety.
I plan to save seeds and grow them again next year to see what I get.

I received a single plant from a friend who had grown them from seed purchased at Burpee.
I was very surprised when my Tomatoes turned out just as pretty as those on this year's Burpee catalog cover. The coloration did vary somewhat with most appearing as mostly yellow with red streaks and some with more red and less yellow. Either way they were just as pretty as any of the five Zebra v... read more