On August 22, the UT Extension Service held a Totally Tomato Workshop at the Chattanooga Food Bank Demonstration Garden. This 2-hour workshop was for education and fun with tomatoes. The attendees learned about tomato varieties, growing needs, seed saving, insect, disease and cultural problems.
Several people brought tomatoes grown in their garden for comparison against other types.
Click to see the chart showing the tomatoes tested by the 15 participants on looks and taste. Of the 13 varieties, Debbie Pendley’s Better Boy hybrid was the overall winner. Tom Stebbins came in a close second with his Rutgers hybrid tomato. Matt’s Red Cherry heirloom from Rising Fawn Farm (Wednesday Market) was also rated very good.
Katie Bishop told the students about the history of the tomato. She explained that it was thought to be a poisonous plant at one time. Katie also talked about growing tomatoes and then demonstrated how to save seeds. Tom Stebbins talked about the insects and diseases that might affect leaves or fruit, and showed several examples.