Gardeners are usually enticed by the exotic, the more unusual something is, the more attractive it seems!
There are a few online stores selling seeds for rainbow tomatoes, claiming they will produce many different vivid colours of tomatoes from the same plant.
Have a look at the photo below, from a seller of such a product, with different coloured fruit growing from the same fruiting stem!
Is this fake or real?
Tomatoes do come in various colours apart from the standard red colour, they are available in various hues of red, red-orange, yellow-orange, yellow, green, red-brown and purple.
The important point to keep in mind though is that any variety of tomato will only produce only one colour of tomato when ripe.
For example, a Green Zebra tomato will only produce striped green tomatoes, a Black Russian tomato will only bear reddish-brown fruit.
This would suggest that a single plant bearing various coloured fruit is indeed fake, and it’s not too hard to manipulate photos to change colours of fruit. I’ll recreate the rainbow tomato photo below!
Here are some plain red Super Roma tomatoes growing in my garden.
Looks too uninteresting? How about this for eye-catching colour?
This photo manipulation was done using image editing software, by selecting the outline of each tomato, and changing the colour hue to the desired unrealistic colour. I could have spent more time to soften the edges of each tomato, to make it look even more real, but I didn’t want to waste the time, and this only took a few minutes.
Don’t believe what you see in digital media, it’s very easy to manipulate photos and alter colours, using software such as Photoshop.
Rainbow coloured tomatoes are a scam, which relies on the fact that tomato seeds take 8-17 weeks to bear fruit after being sown. By that time, it’s either too late to get a refund, or most people won’t be bothered asking for a refund on a purchase of a few dollars. That’s assuming the seeds are even viable to begin with. Buying seeds online from companies that are not reputable seed suppliers is always a risk!
Verdict: Rainbow tomatoes seeds are fake, don’t buy them!