This morning I learnt a really interesting fact. Those little hairs that are present on the stem of tomatoes? You know the ones, and if not I’ve posted a picture below. Well, these are there for two reasons – to protect the plants from insects by creating a physical barrier, and to regulate the temperature of the plants (much in the same way as our own body hair does!).
I thought that was fascinating, so it spurred on a bit of a Google into tomato plants, because I’m bored at work and want to go play with my seedlings!
Here are some pretty awesome facts I’ve found along the way…
- Tomatoes are the state vegetable of New Jersey. They are also the official state fruit of Ohio. Arkansas, however, couldn’t make a decision so tomatoes are both the state vegetable and state fruit.
- There is a tomato plant at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, that covers an area of 56.73m2. That’s bigger than the surface area of an Olympic size swimming pool.
- Heinz Tomato Ketchup has a speed limit. If the sauce poursat more than 0.028mph when it’s in the factory, it’s considered too runny and rejected.
- There are over 10,000 varieties of tomatoes worldwide.
- The largest tomato ever picked weighed in at over 3.5kg.
- There is no mention of tomatoes in either the bible or in the complete works of Shakespeare.
- Tomato plants were some of the first plants to be grown in space.
- 94.5% of tomato’s weight is water.
- Green tomatoes will ripen off if you store them together with apples. The apples release ethylene gas which helps the tomatoes to turn red.
- Although they are wildly known to be a fruit, the misconception of tomatoes being vegetables comes from the fact that the Supreme Court deemed the tomato a vegetable. This was decided for tax purposes.