Tomato 'Principe Borghese'

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: Principe Borghese
» View all varieties of Tomatoes


24-36 in. (60-90 cm)

36-48 in. (90-120 cm)


18-24 in. (45-60 cm)

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:

Small (grape/cherry varieties)

Medium (under one pound)

Days to Maturity:

Mid (69-80 days)

Fruit Colors:


Seed Type:


Family heirlooms




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 is said to grow outdoors in the following regions:

Mobile, Alabama

College, Alaska

Cottonwood, Arizona

Phoenix, Arizona

Queen Creek, Arizona

Bishop, California

Menifee, California

Oceanside, California

Broomfield, Colorado(2 reports)

Denver, Colorado

Statham, Georgia

Clarksville, Indiana

Garden City, Michigan

Vaughn, Montana

Omaha, Nebraska

Mount Sinai, New York

Portland, Oregon

State College, Pennsylvania

Lorena, Texas

Castlewood, Virginia

Richland, Washington

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Gardeners' Notes:


On May 16, 2020, InAGaddaDaGuia from Los Angeles, CA wrote:

So it should be clear. This is not a tomato for eating fresh. But for cooking, drying, and canning. That is where it really shines. Its a pasty thick skinned variety. If canning, it should be canned whole, peel and all in a salt water brine. I follow the process of puncturing each tomato with a few small holes in with clean needle or toothpick. I fill and entire jar with these tomatoes, add a couple of basil leaves, then submerge them in salty hot water. Then I follow the usual process of boiling jars to create a vacuum seal. When you finally do open jar, some may want to throw away the salt water brine. But that is such a horrible shame as the brine it will have a potent flavor. I use the tomato brine water in soups and stews where I simply omit adding more salt. This plant is so pro... read more


On May 9, 2016, LadybugManor from Lorena, TX (Zone 8a) wrote:

Most notable for continuing to set at temperatures over 100 degrees. Abundant and long harvest. Best flavor from roasting to use on pizza, focaccia breads, or roasted beef, chicken, or fish dishes. Garlic, olive and black pepper pair very well with this tomato. Can be difficult to find as transplants. Starting indoors has been hit or miss. Works best as a direct sow in long season garden.


On Apr 5, 2015, greatgray from College, AK wrote:

Agree with many of the other posts about this variety (great for drying or cooked for a sauce), but I also think they taste great fresh. They are prolific producers and contrary to what the seed company suggested, they need staking. Since I live in a short season climate (interior Alaska), I end up having a fair number of green tomatoes, but they ripen in a box quite nicely over the course of 2 months. For drying, I follow Barbara Kingsolver's advice and only partially dry these and then freeze. If you remove most of the water they won't be mushy but also are not so dry they take hours to rehydrate. Really nice to add to a salad in February when all the grocery tomatoes are awful.


On Sep 14, 2014, SWVa from Castlewood, VA wrote:

I understand the neutrals from people wanting a tomato for eating out of hand, but the negative from someone who dries them floored me. I dry tomatoes every year, but in the past I've primarily used Romas. The principe borghese is far and away superior to any other tomato I've dried. Cold weather comes too quickly here for drying any tomato on the vine, so I use a dehydrator. If the tomato is used as intended, for drying and making sauces, the principe borghese is unbeatable. I just canned a lot of sauce, and I'm working on my third quart of dried tomatoes, so I speak from experience.

One word of advice: The seed germinates slowly, but the plant quickly gets LARGE. Forget the usual planting space; plant these four or more feet apart. It will make picking (which you'll be doi... read more


On May 25, 2014, LizCtish from Mount Sinai,
United States wrote:

While this tomato isn't that tasty when eaten fresh, it is so good in other uses that I'm planting as much of it as I can this year. It is totally delicious when roasted. Cut the ripe tomatoes in half, toss them in some olive oil and herbs, and roast at about 350 degrees till a few just begin to char. Delicious with goat cheese, in salads, or just spread on a piece of bread. The green ones at the end of the season made the best relish ever. The plant is easy to grow and produces prolifically.


On Oct 2, 2012, yarrow from Denver, CO wrote:

This is a highly productive and great tasting tomato. The plants started producing red tomatoes at the beginning of July and they have never stopped. Because a frost is coming (Denver, CO) I had to harvest the remaining tomatoes - and the plants are still loaded with both green and red tomatoes. They are good fresh and cooked, and are just the right size for eating in the garden. I also dried a lot but have not tasted them yet. I will definately plant again.


On Feb 4, 2012, Flutefan from Houserville, PA wrote:

We grew this in a pot with full sun, and it produced more than any of the other container planted tomatoes. They tasted excellent fresh.


On Aug 31, 2011, goulot from Canton, MI wrote:

Lots of small one-inch tomatoes, full of seeds. I did not try to dry them in the sun, just froze them whole for winter cooking. They did not taste bad, but cannot compare with Health Kick (I like firm tomatoes that do not drip juice all over you when you eat them on location). Will not grow them again.


On Mar 19, 2011, bishopbookworm from Bishop, CA wrote:

These have produced better than other plums in my garden - with our blazing hot summers, they seem to just keep setting fruit. I like the flavor and will happily eat them fresh - some others have commented on mushiness, but maybe Principe just likes our climate or something as I haven't found them overly mushy here. They dry well - nice to add a handful to winter pasta sauces. Yes, they are on the seedy side but this doesn't bother me so I just skip that part when drying!


On Jan 13, 2011, fwfarm from Lebanon, OR (Zone 7b) wrote:

Some descriptions say this variety has "few seeds". The three vendor's varieties of this I tried all had lots of seeds. The resulting dried tomatoes were mostly seed and skin and not worth eating. Very prolific, though.


On Dec 26, 2010, dlbailey from Central Valley, CA (Zone 9a) wrote:

Incredibly productive plant that's not effected by high temperatures. This is not an eating tomato. Its best dried or made into sauce.


On Jul 6, 2010, carminator1 from mobile, AL (Zone 8a) wrote:

I really like this tomato, it outproduced most of my determinate tomatoes and did wonderful, the taste is good. I am mainly using it for dry tomatoes, hopefuly by the time the tomato season is over I can still enjoy some dry tomatoes on pizza, salads etc...


On Jan 17, 2009, ncowan2005 from Toronto,
Canada wrote:

Yup this tomato has one purpose - it makes the most delicious sun-dried tomatoes ever! (for something that costs 5 bucks for a small jar in the store sundried tomatoes are really easy - you just put the tomatoes on a rack in a barely-on oven for 24 hours - then either keep them dry or (as we do) pack them in oil). When you do that they are perfectly balanced between tart and sweet and keep forever. For all other uses - slicing, frying, etc - it's pretty much useless.


On Mar 12, 2008, colomato from Broomfield, CO wrote:

I really wanted to give this tomato a negative rating, but I have to admit that I didn't dry these, which is what they are best known for. They are awful eaten raw, mushy and not much flavor. Prolific, had great yields, but I wanted a salad tomato, and this is NOT it. Don't grow these for fresh eating, they should be dried or used in recipes (although they are worthless for making sauces in my opinion--deseeding them is tedious and since they are small, there's just not much pulp left afterwards.) I will never grow these again, as I am not really into sun-dried tomatoes.


On Aug 29, 2007, Richinator from Broomfield, CO wrote:

I grew this year's batch from seed I saved the year before. They are hugely prolific, and are in danger of collapsing under their own weight. I've been jerry rigging cages, bamboo poles and lots of twine to support branches and sprays of 6-7 fruit. I need to rotate crops, but the next time I grow tomatoes, I will consider this one for sure.


On Mar 8, 2007, berrygirl from Braselton, GA (Zone 8a) wrote:

Classic tomato suitable for sauces and sun-drying, traditionally grown in the south of Italy. Small egg-shaped fruits, averaging 1" in diameter. Also excellent for fresh eating.


On Sep 7, 2006, tropicalaria from Tri-Cities, WA (Zone 7b) wrote:

Productive plant, with mild, somewhat dry (paste-type) fruit. Said to be good for drying.


On Sep 30, 2005, Farmerdill from Augusta, GA (Zone 8a) wrote:

A small plum.