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Award-Winning New Edible Plants of 2022

Independent growers each year evaluate hundreds of new flowers and vegetables in dozens of trial gardens throughout the United States to determine which are the best ones for home gardeners to try.

The highest scorers earn All-America Selections awards in this nationwide program that dates to 1932.

In the 2021 trials, eight new vegetables were good enough to win 2022 national or regional AAS honors.

2022 National Award Winners

Eggplant Icicle

© All-America Selections

1. Eggplant ‘Icicle’

This eggplant with the elongated white fruits has four improvements going for it: 

1.) it has fewer spines than most eggplants, meaningless painful harvesting; 

2.) it has fewer seeds; 

3.) it has good resistance to bugs

4.) it's white skins do not turn yellow like most other white-fruited eggplants.

Plants grow about four feet tall and produce mature fruits about 55 days after setting plants in the garden.

Buffy Pepper

© All-America Selections

2. Hot pepper ‘Buffy’

‘Buffy’ is a medium-hot pepper (hotter if you eat the seeds) with thick-walled, red-maturing, inch-and-a-half fruits that are held high on the plant. It’s also a prolific producer, capable of churning out 250 to 280 fruits on each four-foot-tall plant. Fruits mature 70 days from setting plants in the garden.

Lettuce Bauer

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3. Lettuce ‘Bauer’

This compact, four-inch-tall, disease-resistant oakleaf lettuce has crunchy, green, densely packed leaves that form eight-inch-wide clusters about a month after setting out transplants. Or snip the leaves when they’re smaller and keep cutting until hot weather ends the mild, sweet flavor.

Pepper Dragonfly

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4. Pepper ‘Dragonfly’

AAS judges especially liked the color of ‘Dragonfly’ fruits – purple on the outside and lime green on the inside. But the variety’s walls are thicker than most bell peppers, and the fruits are held high on the plant, keeping them off the ground and making them easy to see and pick.

Plants grow 24 to 36 inches tall and produce about 40 three-to-four inch, four-lobed fruits per plant.

Tomato Purple Zebra

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5. Tomato ‘Purple Zebra’

This new cherry-tomato variety is also distinct for its fruit color. ‘Purple Zebra’ produces up to 200 three- to four-ounce, little, round tomatoes that are dark red with green stripes.

AAS judges liked the fruits’ firm texture and complex flavor (described as “acid-leaning to sweet”), and they found the variety also has very good disease resistance, including the deadly late-blight disease. Plants begin producing ripe fruit about 80 to 85 days after setting out transplants.

2022 Regional Honors

Tomato Pink Delicious

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1. Tomato ‘Pink Delicious’

Besides sweet flavor and good disease resistance, this pink-fruited new tomato is distinctive for being earlier to produce ripe fruit than similar full-sized tomatoes – about 84 days after setting plants in the garden.

Yields of ‘Pink Delicious’ also are very good, and the fruits resist cracking. It won a regional AAS award in the Southeast and Heartland regions.

Tomato Sunset Torch

© All-America Selections

2. Tomato ‘Sunset Torch’

This cherry-type tomato with rosy-orange fruits is a vigorous grower, high yielder (up to 300 fruits per plant), and early producer – producing ripe fruits 75 days after setting plants in the garden.

‘Sunset Torch’ also has excellent disease resistance. It won a regional AAS award in the Mountain/Southwest, Southeast, and West/Northwest regions.

Watermelon Century Star

© All-America Selections

3. Watermelon ‘Century Star’

‘Century Star’ is a seedless watermelon similar to the popular and sweet but seeded heirloom variety, ‘Moon and Stars.’

This new variety produces two to three 10-pound fruits per plant that have dark outer rinds that are spotted yellow. It won a regional AAS award in the Great Lakes region.

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