Working on our seed order, Cameron and I came across the words determinate and indeterminate. The basic definitions are - indeterminate seeds continue to produce fruit throughout the season, whereas determinate seeds grow to a certain size and produce all of their fruit in one go.
We grow indeterminate type tomatoes, needing to produce fruit throughout our very long tomato season. The description of the physical attributes of these plants is long and gangly, needing to be staked. Several years ago, Nigel made the decision to no longer stake our tomatoes because it requires so much labor during a time when labor is in high demand, lavender harvest, potato harvest, etc. I believe he compensated for loss by over-planting, to ensure we have plenty of fruit to choose from.
Determinate tomatoes are what they grow at the farm next door, for Campbell’s tomato soup. These plants are described as short and bushy. Now that I have learned this aspect of tomatoes, I can clearly see the difference. And yes, the fruit comes in all at one time. When the soup tomatoes fields are ready, their harvesters come in and the clear out the field in about 24 hours. It is pretty incredible.