Re: [tomato] Creating your own heirlooms?

Orchid (
Tue, 30 Mar 1999 19:18:45 -0500

>.  In short, we already have over 4,000 tomato
>varieties that need growing.  Why create more?

Hey, what about gene splicing and the news story I read awhile ago about
splicing the genes of a salmon into a tomato, so that it stays fresher
longer, or ships better or whatever?  And what about radiated produce?
Hey, how about splicing the genes from a lightning bug with a tomato,
irridate the seeds, then we can pick them at night without a flashlight?

Peter, Zone 10, South Florida
-----Original Message-----
From: ChuckWyatt/Md/Z7 <>
To: <>
Date: Tuesday, March 30, 1999 6:27 PM
Subject: Re: [tomato] Creating your own heirlooms?

>By definition an heirloom tomato is one that is open pollinated AND had
>been in existance since WWII.  This has slipped to some extent but a
>recently developed and stabilized variety can hardly be classified as an
>There may be all sorts of time needed to stabilize a hybrid.  In fact, many
>of them will not stabilize at all and others are sterile.
>In the last few years folks have realized that arguably the best tomatoes
>ever to grace the human pallette have long been thrust aside because of the
>monetary potential in the hybrids.  Hybrids can be patented and their
>source kept secret, thus keeping the price up.  I have nothing against
>hybridization IF the job is completed.  By that I mean refraining from
>marketing a variety unless it is stable.
>Over 80% of our tomato varieties from 1903 have been lost.  Extinct is for
>ever. I would like to see more gardeners preserving the old varieties.  We
>may very well need them some day.  The incredible variety must be
>experienced to be believed.  In short, we already have over 4,000 tomato
>varieties that need growing.  Why create more?
>Chuck Wyatt