You may think tomatoes are native to Italy, given how important tomatoes are to current Italian cuisine. But tomatoes, like potatoes, are actually from Latin American. Spanish colonists, starting with Christopher Columbus, brought the plants to Europe.
In the museum garden, we are growing a variety of tomatoes called "Cuoré di bué" in Italian, "Coeur de Boeuf" and "Oxheart" in English. The particular strain was brought to New Brunswick by an Italian immigrant who moved to Moncton.
The story of this particular tomato strain is an example of how seeds travel -- and how traditions evolve. Spaghetti with tomato sauce, lasagne, pizza are all Italian foods that are common in North America, and the key ingredient - the tomato - actually came from the Americas.