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‘First Mate’ is a result of an accidental cross between ‘Lucky Cross’ and an unknown tomato variety found by Millard Murdock in his garden in 2009. This is a sister line for another, very popular tomato ‘Captain Lucky’. Here is what Millard Murdock writes about the origin of ‘First Mate’: ‘Captain Lucky and First Mate both came from a natural cross in my garden of Lucky Cross. The first generation was a pink beefsteak which I named Hannie Caulder. The second generation produced the same pink beefsteak, an RL Black (Black Mamba), and a PL Black (Black Magic). The third generation from Hannie Caulder produced First Mate, and from Black Magic, Captain Lucky. I don’t think this was a cross of Black Magic because Captain Lucky remained stable in future growouts.’
‘First Mate’ tomato plant produces medium-sized (6- 12oz./180-350g), bi-colored beefsteaks, beautifully colored outside (green, yellow, and copper) and inside (pink, amber, and green marbling). Fleshy and juicy, very good tomato flavor, sweet and fruity. In the opinion of many growers, one of the best-tasting tomatoes. Indeterminate, but not very tall plant with regular leaf foliage. Mid- to late season, about 85 days to maturity.