Tomato Ã¢â‚¬â€ el tomate
From Peace Corps Wiki
 Tomato - el tomate
Scientific name: Lycopersium esculentum
Description: These delicious red fruits are highly desired although many varieties are prone to insect and disease damage. If you are willing to work for them, tomatoes can yield large, satisfying crops.
How to sow: Start seeds in a semellero. When plants have their first set of true leaves (2 months) transplant into the garden. Plant tomatoes 2’ apart with 3-5’ between rows.
Days to germination: 5-10
Days to harvest: 70-90
Care: Tomatoes are heavy feeders, meaning they need rich soil. In the tropics, amending the soil is a must. Compost, manure, leaf mold or other organic matter mixed into the soil is a must. Tomatoes also need consistent water to prevent the
Harvest: Twist or cut the tomatoes from the plant when they are red. The best time to harvest is in the morning. Tomatoes can last weeks in a refrigerator or between one and two weeks with out refrigeration. Seed saving: If you want to start the seedlings immediately, you can plant the seeds wet, just as they came out of the fruit. However, if you want to save the seeds or transport them, fermenting the seeds in necessary. Ferment the seeds by allowing them to sit covered in their juice (add a little water if they aren’t completely covered) for two to three days. This breaks down the gel sack around the seed. Stir a couple times a day. Then clean and wash the seeds allowing to dry on paper or a screen for several days before storing in a paper bag in a cool dry place. The seeds should be good for several months with out refrigeration.
Tips: In Panama, tomatoes often suffer from powdery mildew and verticillium wilt. Powdery mildew is a white powder that appears usually on the lower stems and leaves of the plant. Prevent this problem by adequately spacing plants to increase air circulation. Verticillium wilt (known in Spanish as “la tristesa”) is a soil born fungus that is splashed up onto the tomato leaves by water. The symptoms are wilting of upper leaves that spreads through the plant killing it. This often happens right as the fruit sets. In humid, rainy areas the only way to beat verticillium wilt is to grow your plants in a greenhouse or under a roof. You may prevent VT by making sure not to get the leaves of the tomato pants wet when watering. There are seeds that are sold as Verticillium Wilt Resistant (VWR). I have found the Criollo varieties are often better suited to the climate of Panama.