By Laura Muntean

SOMERVILLE -- The Texas A&M University department of horticulture will host a tomato culture workshop from 9 a.m.-noon on March 18 at the Texas A&M University Horticulture Teaching Research and Extension Center, 3199 County Road 269 in Somerville.

The free workshop will cover production practices and nutrition, disease and pest management, quality control, new cultivars and breeding.

Speakers include:

• Kevin Crosby, associate professor in the department of horticulture sciences in College Station.

• Thomas Isakeit, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service plant pathologist in College Station.

• Carlos Avila, Texas A&M AgriLife Research associate in Weslaco.

• Bhimu Patil, director of the Vegetable and Fruit Improvement Center in College Station.

"Those attending should expect to receive information covering all aspects of tomato cultivation for Texas growers," Crosby said. "Focuses will be on pest and disease control, cultivar selection, fertility and quality management, and protected culture strategies."

Free tomato plants of Texas A&M-developed cultivars will be available for attendees as well as hands-on training for those interested in grafting and producing hybrid seed by hand pollinations.

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