Very strange, beginning to end... Why would they want to see a garden and make a special trip for it, if she is too terrified to look? How far north do they live to be surprised at greenery in Sept? I'm in Ohio and and my tomatoes and peppers are still producing like mad, better than they did in heat of summer and since we did get some rain, everything is very green and lush. These folks live by the Arctic circle?
And of course being afraid of tomato plants.... I have a trumpet creeper that you wouldn't want to get too close to (the thing grows so fast, if you hold still too long, it will swallow you up), but I never heard of being afraid of tomato plants. When tomatoes were introduced to Europe, people wouldn't eat them thinking they were poisonous like other nightshades, but even so, I doubt they were afraid of the plants.