Fruits or Vegetables?

Are tomatoes fruits or vegetables?

There appear to be two definitions of fruits and vegetables: a culinary one, and a botanical one.


We grow up most familiar with the culinary terms. Oranges, strawberries, cherries and pineapples are fruit. Broccoli, beans, potatoes and peppers are vegetables. I think of fruit as being sweet, eaten for breakfast or dessert. I think of vegetables as being savory and eaten at dinner time. Culinarily, fruits and vegetables are mutually exclusive.


But it turns out (thanks, Wikipedia!) that vegetables, in the botanical sense, are any part of a plant that is eaten. And fruits are seed-bearing structures in flowering plants formed from part of the flower. Therefore, all edible fruits are vegetables.


With that in mind, the lettuce, parsley, bok choi, tomatoes, peppers, eggplant and herbs that you got from Henry Street Farms are all vegetables. Can you figure out which ones are fruits, botanically? Funnily enough, we haven't sold any seedlings for culinary fruits. Unless you count tomatoes. Which were determined in the US Supreme Court to be vegetables, culinarily, in 1893. For taxation purposes...

Here is a picture of some immature Defiant tomatoes. These are the determinate tomatoes I mentioned in the last blog post.

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