A picture of a Tomato 'Ailsa Craig'

Tomato 'Ailsa Craig'

Solanum lycopersicum 'Ailsa Craig'

Photo by AlanGardenMaster (All rights reserved)

Full Sun
Easy care
Moderate watering
Tender

10a-13b

USDA zone

-1°C

Minimum temperature

Expected size

Height
Spread

2m

Max

60cm

1m

Min

30cm

75 days to reach maturity

Fruiting

  • spring
  • summer
  • autumn
  • winter

Roughly 45-90 days until maturity. Ripe tomatoes are firm but slightly soft and a deep ripe colour and varying sizes. Fruit bruises easily so only "palm" the tomatoes, don't squeeze. Gently pick them off the stem once ripe or remove a branch and allow to dry while picking the fruit as they ripen.

Tomato 'Ailsa Craig' Overview

Tomato 'Ailsa Craig' is medium sized cordon (Vine) variety that has become a gardeners favourite. It ripens early, producing fruit that are very even in shape and size.

Common problems with Tomato 'Ailsa Craig'

Be on the lookout for pests, like Stink bugs, cutworms, tomato hornworms and tobacco hornworms, cabbage loopers, tomato fruitworms, flea beetles, and Colorado potato beetles.

Tomato 'Ailsa Craig' Companion Plants

Interplanting your tomatoes with other strong scented plants can help to mask the tomato plant from unwanted pests. Examples of these are the onion family (Chives, Garlic) and the mints (Spearmint, Oregano and Basil). The best known and most commonly used is Tagetes patula (French marigold), although some believe it can subtly change the flavour of the fruit. Grow Borage, Queens Anne Lace, Parsley and Dill to protect against Tomato Hornworm. These flowers will attract adult parasitic wasps and other predatory flies that feed on their umbellifer flowers. The larvae of these wasps feed on the Tomato hornworm, while the flies will feed ob various tomato pests. Asparagus produces Asparagus acid. When grown near tomato plants, this acid will repel nematodes that are known to attack. Tomato plants also protect Asparagus as they contain Solanine, a type of poison that kills the Asparagus beetle. Ground cover plants, including mints, stabilize moisture loss round tomato plants and other Solanaceae, which come from very humid climates, these can help prevent moisture-related problems like blossom end rot.

How to propagate Tomato 'Ailsa Craig'

Cuttings

Cuttings root easily if placed in a glass of water.

Seed

Sow indoors and transplant seedlings once they are 15-25 cm tall. Bury at least two-thirds of the stem to encourage root growth and a stronger plant. Space seedlings 60 cm apart and water thoroughly.

Special features of Tomato 'Ailsa Craig'

Crop rotation

Tomatoes are heavy feeders, follow with legumes.

Attractive fruits

Attracts useful insects

Insects such as bees.

Pot plant

Medium tomatoes can be grown in pots. Make use the pot is large enough and provide a support for the plant or use a pot tall enough for the plant to cascade over.

Other uses of Tomato 'Ailsa Craig'

Edible

The fruit is consumed in diverse ways, including raw, as an ingredient in many dishes, sauces, salads, and drinks made into juices, dried or preserved.

Medicinal

Tomatoes contain lycopene, an antioxidant. It contains vitamins A, B, C and K as well as minerals like potassium and calcium.