Jun 14, 2021
First box of Bradley County, Arkansas, tomatoes delivered to Extension office

The 2021 season for one of Arkansas’ favorite summer treats is off and running now that the first box of tomatoes has been delivered to the Bradley County Cooperative Extension Service office.

The first box of tomatoes for 2021 was brought in by River Grice, a fifth generation farmer in Warren, Arkansas. River is pictured with his father, Lynn Grice. Photo: John Gavin/University of Arkansas

“The first box of tomatoes for 2021 was brought in by River Grice, a fifth-generation farmer in Warren,” John Gavin said on June 4. Gavin is Bradley County Extension staff chair for the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture. “River and his father, Lynn Grice, produce approximately 16 acres of tomatoes and other produce that include tomato varieties of Red Mountain, Purple Cherokee, Bradley, and Pink Girl.”

Gavin said the Grice family also raise watermelons, cantaloupe and peppers.

The first box contained Red Mountain tomatoes, which were displayed at the Bradley County Chamber of Commerce during the Pink Tomato Festival, June 11-12. This year is the 65th annual festival that celebrates the county’s famous pink tomatoes.

Wet weather

Arkansas has had its share of cool, wet weather this spring.

“Tomatoes are about one to two weeks late this year because of the weather,” Gavin said. “It has been a good year for zucchini, yellow squash and cabbage but the cool and wet weather has delayed the tomatoes.”

In 2015, Arkansas produced 1.82 million pounds of tomatoes, according to the 2020 Arkansas Agriculture profile.

To learn about Extension programs in Arkansas, contact your local Cooperative Extension Service agent or visit www.uaex.uada.edu. T

o learn more about Division of Agriculture research, visit the Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station website: https://aaes.uark.edu. To learn more about the Division of Agriculture, visit https://uada.edu/

Mary Hightower, University of Arkansas 

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