Friday, February 01, 2008

If you have not gone to the blurb at Local Harvest, check it out at:

Explore a new potato variety adventure in one package!

The TaterMater Potato Sampler is destined to be my most popular item. Here you'll discover six distinctive and delicious potato varieties with each order Review different colors, tastes, and textures, all postage-free. Displayed in a eight-pound box The TaterMater Potato Sampler comes with information clearly describing each potato Each of the six varieties is available nowhere else but here. Be the among the first customers to support TaterMater’s varieties $40.00 post paid

The mix of 6 varieties at this point in time will be:

Lumpers Certified Nuclear generation
Skagit Valley Gold Certified Nuclear generation
Nordic October Certified Nuclear generation

Varieties recently from TPS
October Blue (Blue skin, blue flesh, large tubers high yield0
Thumb Wingers (Red skin, yellow-orange flesh. fingerling, very fast cooking)
Skagit Beet Meet (Red skin, very red flesh)

Call me, or email me for orders
cell 425 894-1123

If there is any other combination of varieties needed, email me. Thousands of newly named potatoes are available upon request. European type, South American type, etc.

Thursday, January 31, 2008

People ask me all the time, "Where can I find your tomato creations?" I talked with Ken Ettlinger of the Long Island Seed Project (LISP) the other day and he reminded me that he obtained seed from me years ago from my Tater-Mater Seed catalog and that was from the days of 1983 to 1986. I forget who got seed from me in those days and I have so many varieties floating around in the seed industry that I even I loose track of them.

Case in point is the "Green 'n Gold" tomato variety that originated out of my Dwarf Green Flesh Mix. I probably had a name for this one but Ken gave it his name. That is fine with me. I ran across the name Green 'n Gold before but didn't think that it was one of my creations. After talking with Ken, I went to his website this blurb:

The green (inside) and gold (outside) is, I suspect, a sister line of Green Zebra, produced from a mixture of dwarf green fleshed tomatoes that I obtained from Tater Mater Seeds many years ago. I called it "Green 'n Gold" when USDA strongly suggested that I place the names of every cultivar that I included in the packet of my "Dwarf Campion Tomato Blend" (as well as every other seed blend that I marketed).

No, Ken, it is not a sister line of Green Zebra, but is more closely related to a tomato called Lime Green Salad that I sent to Tim Peters of Peters Seed Research in Oregon. I may not even have the Green 'n Gold in my collection as viable seed anymore, so my hat is off to Ken more maintaining it.

Ken goes on with praise for my tomato breeding at his website. Please visit his website at the Long Island Seed Project to read more stories like below:

Tom Wagner has to be one of the most noteworthy of tomato collectors and prolific hybridizers of all time. His Tater Mater Seed Company in the early 1980's made these really neat breeding lines of tomatoes and potatoes available to gardeners looking to share in some of the excitement of his breeding experiments. He collected some very unusual material and made available some exciting crosses. I wasn't very interested in experimenting with potatoes but the tomatoes were, I guess, mind expanding. The results were F1 and subsequent generations of hollow tomatoes, waxy tomatoes, green tomatoes, striped tomatoes, brown fleshed tomatoes, etc.

Thanks Ken for sharing this story,

Tom Wagner

Sunday, January 27, 2008

During my invited visit to Decorah, Iowa it was my great pleasure to meet up with old acquaintances and to make new friends. I was one of the guest speakers introduced by Kent Whealy.

My talk was entitled, The History, Present Activities and Future Plans of an Heirloom Plant Breeder.

I have a copy of the SSE 2007 Harvest Edition. I am including my remarks here.

Introduction by Kent Whealy --Our next speaker this afternoon is Tom Wagner. Tom has been breeding plants, mostly tomatoes and potatoes, for 54 years. He is the founder of Tater-Mater Seeds, and he's introduced some of the most beautiful tomato varieties that I've every seen in my life-Green Zebra, Schimmeig Stoo, Schimmeig Creg, Banana Legs, -a lot of them just knocked our eyes out when we fist saw them. I have to tell a story. This is our 27th "Annual Convention." (We used to call it the "Campout," but then we realized that people mistakenly thought that if they came, they had to camp, and some flolks weren't coming because of that.) Anyhow, when we first started having these gatherings, my family was living down in Missouri. Probably about our third Campout, Tom came down in a pickup for Kansas City, I think, and had thse breeding schemes for his tomatoes, laid out generation by generation. It was certainly way over my head. But then we started growing some of Tom's material, and it was just out of this world. i think that Tom has done more for the real beauty of today's tomato varieties than anyone could ever possibly imagine. So it's with a great deal fo pleasure that i introduce Tom Wagner.


Thank you very much. "Who's your daddy?" That's what people ask about the Green Zebra all the time. I bred that up when I was a kid back in the Fifties. I was getting seeds from Gleckler's, and I got the Evergreen and thought it was a crazy-looking tomato. It was late-maturing, and I didn't know when it was ripe. When is a green tomato ripe? It was cracking, and by the time I picked it I had to almost carry it in both hands to get in the house before it would either crack more or fall apart in my hands. I thought it was the perfect tomato for throwing at people-they would be all green and nobody would know what hit them.

Anyway, Evergreen cracked. So I went down to Atchison, Kansas, because there was a fellow there growing some old tomatoes that he siad wee the best he had and they didn't crack.. I thought, " I'm going to make my Green Zebra a non-cracking tomato."

More later.....