For most growers, tomatoes are their top cash crop. One of the most important questions relating to tomatoes is what variety to grow in the given cultural situation (greenhouse, high tunnel, or field). Growers frequently discuss this amongst themselves, review new releases and look for recommendations from various reputable sources. Comments from customers are also critical to any decision.
To help growers gain a better understanding on the situation, both statewide, and amongst their auction growers, a survey could be helpful. I will be working with University of Missouri's Assessment Resource Center to conduct one in November or early December. They also conducted the IPM survey in late winter of 2012. So, what types of information will be asking for, how will we analyze it, and how will we share it?
Two basic questions will be asked. What tomato variety or varieties do you intend to grow this year and why? For growing, we'll likely group together
For why, we'll likely ask to rank which factors are most important to your making your selection
Field day and farm tour planned for Aug. 28th
Given enough responses, we will be able to give results specific to a community. So the more that reply, the better. That way you can understand what are the most popular varieties and why at the different auctions (including your own) and the average for the entire state.
We hope to be able to share the results in either the winter or spring newsletter. The results aren't likely to be in time to have anyone adjust their planting for 2014 (that's why its called a planting intention survey), but it might give you something to think about as the season progresses, and may assist you for the 2015 year.
REVISED: November 23, 2015