Tomato (Solanum lycopersicum), flowering plant of the nightshade family (Solanaceae), cultivated extensively for its edible fruits. Labeled as a vegetable for nutritional purposes, tomatoes are a good source of vitamin C and the phytochemical lycopene. It is mainly a warm and dry season crop. Tomatoes are usually staked or tied to keep the stems and fruits off the ground. Well drained, fertile, sandy or loamy soils are ideal for the crop.