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LSU AgCenter tomato field day set for June 11

An LSU AgCenter tomato field day is scheduled for 5 p.m., June 11, at the Waterproof Ridge Farm at 3719 Bayou Black Drive in Houma, La.

LSU AgCenter experts will discuss traditional tomato varieties as well as those more disease-resistant. Presentations will include using plastic mulch and drip irrigation and tomato disease prevention. Activities will include taste-testing of various tomato varieties.

Bobby Fletcher Jr., LSU AgCenter area Extension agent, said a contest for the largest vine-ripened tomato also will be held. Residents can bring their largest vine-ripened tomatoes to be weighed between 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. “This competition is open to anyone, and we are really trying to involve students from the area plus adults, as we have in the past,” Fletcher said.

Residents will have the opportunity to learn about tomato varieties and how to grow tomatoes like commercial growers, he said.

The program also will include LSU AgCenter nutrition agent Debbie Melvin, who will discuss the nutritional value of fruits and vegetables and the importance of a healthy lifestyle.

Don Ferrin, LSU AgCenter plant pathologist, will speak on major tomato diseases and what can be done to prevent them in a garden.

“Residents also will have the opportunity to view peach, plum and fig trees planted on raised rows with a trickle irrigation system in place,” Fletcher said. “And more than 20 varieties of figs are on display in this demonstration plot.”

From the downtown Houma area, Waterproof Ridge Farm can be reached by going to the intersection of Barrow Street and Bayou Black Drive, turning left onto Bayou Black Drive and continuing 4.7 miles, then turning left and going 1 mile.

From the Thibodaux area, take Louisiana Highway 311 to the Savanne Road intersection, then turn right and go to the end of Savanne Road, cross the bayou and turn left on Bayou Black Drive, travel 1.6 miles, then turn right and go 1 mile.

Registration will begin at 4 p.m., and the program will be from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. This educational program is free and open to the public.

Anyone with a disability that requires special attention to be able to participate in this educational program may call (985) 446-1316 at least 48 hours prior to the event to arrange for assistance.

More information is available from Fletcher by e-mailing [email protected] or from Debbie Melvin by e-mailing [email protected]. They also can be contacted by telephone at (985) 446-1316.

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