Tomato 'Purple Calabash'

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: Purple Calabash
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4-6 ft. (1.2-1.8 m)

6-8 ft. (1.8-2.4 m)


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

Sun Exposure:

Full Sun


Parts of plant are poisonous if ingested

Seed Collecting:

Allow unblemished fruit to ripen; clean and dry seeds

Ferment seeds before storing

Properly cleaned, seed can be successfully stored

Growing Habit:


Fruit Shape:


Fruit Size:

Medium (under one pound)

Days to Maturity:

Mid (69-80 days)

Late (more than 80 days)

Fruit Colors:



Seed Type:



Fresh, salad

Fresh, slicing

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:

Mobile, Alabama

Mission Viejo, California

Oceanside, California

San Luis Obispo, California

Sanbornville, New Hampshire

Carmel, New York

Elgin, Texas

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Gardeners' Notes:


On Jun 8, 2010, carminator1 from mobile, AL (Zone 8a) wrote:

I was attracted to this tomato because of its smoky color and unusual shape. However the taste was a little too bland for me. I have been using it mainly to make sauce and it does make a good sauce tomatoe, but as far as fresh eating, I am not too impresed. The size of the tomato was on the smallish size as well. Production is really good, does make a nice toamato for salsa.


On Jul 26, 2009, PotomacGardener from Potomac, MD wrote:

I started this tomato from seed purchased at Monticello (Th. Jefferson's home) in VA in 2002. The plant is growing well and is very healthy - no sign of the Early Blight or the wilt with which my other heirlooms are contending. Very unusual foliage - almost feathery in appearance. Lots of unripe fruit, but none have yet ripened. Will report back once we have harvested and sampled.


On Sep 5, 2008, notthefunkind wrote:

this is one of my favorite tomatoes. it's adorable and the color is just out of sight. and what a fun one to show to people who have never seen it! "that's a *tomato*??" i guess some folks have eaten too many supermarket hybrids. this is also a very beautiful plant. the first year i grew them they were maybe 3 1/2 feet tall, but this year i have some about 5 1/2 feet. wish i had known they had this potential. i would have used taller stakes! o, and not to neglect to mention taste: it's rich and strong with a big bite. but what else would you expect from a mexican tomato that has been around over 400 years.


On Jul 14, 2008, SLO_Garden from San Luis Obispo, CA wrote:

I like this tomato. The ruffled appearance and color make it a conversation piece, and I found the flavor to be comparable to any good black tomato. My plant produced a lot of tomatoes, but they were on the small side.


On Aug 13, 2007, Lilypon from Moose Jaw, SK (Zone 3b) wrote:

First tasting of this tomato left me unimpressed. I found it to be very bland. I've got a number of others ripening so will change my rating if they prove to be tastier than the first one.

Very pretty looking tomato though.


On Jul 5, 2007, Suze_ from (Zone 7b) wrote:

Good, rich flavor and interesting appearance. However, not much usable flesh because of the extreme ruffled shoulders.


On Sep 17, 2006, PurplePansies from Deal, NJ (Zone 7a) wrote:

Gorgeous dusty/ dusky purple color. Like a smoked lavender. :) Very nice! tomato. Great flavor. I find the flavor to be moderate, not too heavy or spicey, not very mild or sweet either, but it IS a bit sweet and not a sour type tomato. JUST! lovely and more pleated than some pleated tomatos. Highly! recommended. ;) :)


On Sep 5, 2004, Sequee from Carmel, NY (Zone 6b) wrote:

One of my more successful tomatoes this year. The tomato is fun to grow because it is HEAVILY fluted - absolutely adorable at every stage of growth. Makes a great presentation on a tomato tray. I had some problems with blossom end rot, but once they got growing, they were very successful. They also tend to have heavy catfacing on the bottom, which cuts into the tomatoe's usability. The flavor is dense and smokey - I 've been told it makes a great wine! The only real drawback to me was the skin, which is a little tough for my taste. i found that if I picked it when it was still a bit pinkish, the skin was more manageable.