History of Tomatoes

The Basket of Apples is one of Cézanne’s most famous still-life paintings. Today he might have chosen to paint a basket of colorful heirloom tomatoes.

Tomatoes are native to the Americas and can be traced back to the Aztecs around 700 A.D. Early Aztec writings reveal recipes for a dish that uses tomatoes, peppers, and seasoning. However, it was not until around the 16th century that Europeans were introduced to this fruit. Throughout Southern Europe, the tomato was quickly accepted into the kitchen, but as it moved north, many Europeans feared that the tomato was poisonous, and the tomato’s reputation was ruined.

You can’t keep a good plant down, though, and despite its ill-deserved bad reputation, eventually, the taste of the tomato TRIUMPHED and became popular the world over.

In the 1800s, there was a mass immigration from Europe to America and the traditional blending of cultures. Many Italian-Americans ate tomatoes and brought their love of the food with them. The invention of the pizza in Naples in the late 1880s only accelerated the increase in the popularity of the tomato.

Read more about the history of tomatoes here!

To see what the Friends have been up to, please click here to visit our Newsletter.

The House and Gardens of Virginia & Harry Robinson

Written in 2011 to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the estate, this enchanting book details the history and architecture of the Beaux-Arts house and garden as well as telling many captivating stories about the Robinson family. Inside, find a rich archival history of the Robinsons with historic photographs and the work of renowned contemporary photographers Tim Street-Porter and Salli MacAller. Included are photos, floor plans, and in-depth lists of the trees and flora located on the property. Get lost in the pioneering spirit of the Robinsons as they “accidentally" discover their property at 1008 Elden Way and begin their lives together in what was to become the first estate of Beverly Hills.

A must-have for garden lovers everywhere!

Click Here to Purchase