Heirloom tomatoes in the news…a lot

Stuck at home in bed over the past few days I’ve amused myself by looking at trends in the volume of googling for “seed bank” and “Svalbard” and of news items about armyworm outbreaks.

Anyway, here’s another one. It seems that there has been a steady increase over the past few years in news stories about heirloom tomatoes.

News peaks in summer, not surprisingly. Interestingly, the search pattern, which is not as clear-cut as that for news shown above, does not coincide with that for “seed banks.”

Well, all this is great fun, of course, but does it have any practical use? I mean along the lines of the recently-announced flu early warning system. Problem is, plant diseases don’t really generate the levels of interest of things like flu. Except maybe Ug99. So what is it good for, agrobiodiversity-wise? Apart from playing around when one is ill, that is.

2 Replies to “Heirloom tomatoes in the news…a lot”

  1. No. If you look in detail, Google is pulling the date from the content of the item. The date of 1781, thus, comes from a very recent article about a particular heirloom being grown, it is claimed, by thomas Jefferson in 1781.

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