Category:B.C KO T

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Tatiana. Summer 2005
Tatiana. July 2011.
Tatiana. July 2011.
Tatiana's garden. 2005
Tatiana's backyard. 2007
Deer. July 14, 2011

Tatiana Kouchnareva

The Founder and the Owner of Tatiana's TOMATObase

Garden Location 
Zone 7b, PNW, Anmore, BC, Canada (760 ft above sea level)
Seed Saving 
actively saving heirloom and open-pollinated vegetable seeds since 2003, a listing Seed Savers Exchange (SSE) member since 2006 and Seeds of Diversity member since 2010.
Email at
Main interests

An article about us in Tri-City News (July 12, 2011)

Seed Collection

Garden Pictures

Growing Methods

We grow all our vegetables organically, using kitchen compost and composted horse manure to amend the soil in spring, and liquid seaweed, fish fertilizer and molasses as additional feed throughout a growing season. After the harvest, potato and garlic beds are planted with buckwheat for "green manure," and leave it in the field to be killed by frost. The melons, peppers, and tomatoes are harvested much later, so we plant winter rye in early to mid October, after removing the plants. Winter rye grows through the winter months and it is ready to be cut in April to early May, just in time to plant the new tomato and pepper crops!

Since 2013, we started to add alfalfa meal to vegetable beds instead of fish fertilizer, and the results were so impressive. Alfalfa meal is a great natural fertilizer and soil enhancer, and if added in larger quantities along with other organic amendments like compost, straw, and coffee grinds, it also helps to warm up the soil significantly in early spring, allowing us to set out plants about 2 weeks earlier.

We grow most of my tomatoes under plastic cover, to protect from foliage diseases that usually come after rain. We do not use any fungicides or pesticides in the garden.

Peppers and melons are grown in non-heated greenhouses, since the Pacific Northwest summers are usually not hot enough to ripen the fruit before the frost. This also allows us to set out transplants earlier in spring, extending the growing season significantly.

Our garden backs onto wilderness, and deer visit regularly to forage; occasionally we see black bears. We tried a variety of deer repellents and netting to control deer and bear damage, and found they did not work well, so we installed a high-voltage electric fence around the garden area. This effectively stopped both deer and bear "attacks."

2015 Tomato Growout

2015 Pepper Growout

2014 Tomato Growout

2014 Pepper Growout

2014 Squash Growout

5 squash varieties.

  Family Seed source Description History Year grown Size Fruit Color Country
Blue Hubbard C. maxima Pinetree Seeds 08 * Very old New England heirloom, introduced by Gregory Seed Company in 1909. 2014 medium gray
Japs C. moschata Jeannine Chalmers, Coquitlam, BC 10 / from Australia Very virogous vines with large leaves. Late fruit set. ... * From Australia? 2013(crop failure)
large gray Australia
Kakai Hulless C. maxima Jeannine Chalmers, Coquitlam, BC, Canada 12 / West Coast Seeds Medium-small, 3-5 lb., black-striped pumpkins with large, dark green, completely hull-less seeds, which are absolutely delicious roasted. Semi-bush, short-vine plants. Average yield is 2-3 fruits/plant. * An Austrian type that yields the valuable green pumpkin seed oil. 2014 small orange USA
Thai Large C. moschata Jeannine Chalmers, Coquitlam, BC, Canada 12 / West Coast Seeds 07 Black colored winter squash that turns tan in storage. Fruit are flattened, ribbed and have a textured, knobby skin. Flesh is yellow/orange and thick, with delicious sweet flavor. 5-8 lbs. Great for baking and soups. * This variety originated in Thailand where is it known as fuktong.
  • It should perform very well in hot and humid climates.
  • According to some online sources, it is an heirloom variety, but I was not able to find a confirmation of that.
2014 medium black Thailand
Zolotaya Grusha C. maxima Valeriy Popenko, Semei, Kazakhstan 11 / CV Russkiy Ogorod 10 Very early, 95 days from sprouts. Each vine bears 2-3 fruits 3-4 lbs in weight. Fruits are bright orange, shaped like a droplet. Firm sweet flesh with some nutty flavor. Perfect for soups, baking, pies. Keeps well until spring. * Russian commercial variety. 2014 medium orange Russia

2014 Melon Growout

2014 Watermelon Growout

2014 Lettuce Growout

Germination failure: Flame (Lettuce), Sunset (Lettuce), Rubin (Lettuce), Rossimo, Red Deer Tongue

21 lettuce varieties.

  Type Leaf Color Seed source Description History Year grown Variety type Country
Brown Dutch Winter butterhead pinkish-green Jeff Fleming of Augusta, Michigan (MI FL J) 07 / Fredrick Sullivan of Maumee, Ohio (OH SU F) 01 Butterhead type, dark seeds, large loose heads, pale green leaves with brown margins, very cold tolerant, can overwinter in Zone 4. * Grown by Thomas Jefferson at Monticello, this variety was noted as early as 1731 by English botanist Stephan Switzer.
  • First offered in the Seed Savers 2009 Yearbook by Jakob R. Loewenberg of Shorewood, Wisconsin (WI LO J).
commercial heirloom
Cherokee (Lettuce) batavian red Johnny's Selected Seeds 11 Beige seed. Thick, crisp, very dark and strikingly beautiful red leaves with lighter greenish tinge inside. Very good flavor. Very slow bolting with excellent tolerance to heat and bottom rot. * ?
  • Resistant to DM races 1-16, 19, and 21.
2014 open-pollinated USA
Crispino crisphead West Coast Seeds 11 Crisphead variety that was bred for commercial growers. Tight heads are medium size and vibrant green. Slow bolting. Beige seeds. * ?
  • First offered in the Seed Savers 2013 Yearbook by Seed Savers Heritage Farm, Decorah, Iowa (IA SSE HF).
  • SSE LETTUCE 485.
2014 open-pollinated
Flame (Lettuce) leaf red Heirloom Seeds 11 Loose leaf variety with intensely red and frilly leaves. Early maturing. Slow bolting. Beige seeds. * According to Seed Savers Exchange seed catalog, it was introduced to in 1988 by CV Harris Moran Seed Company. 2014 commercial
Kagraner Sommer butterhead green Heirloom Seeds 11 Butterhead variety and tender crinkled green leaves. Very good resistance to heat and bolting makes it a great lettuce for growing in summer. Dark seeds. * Heirloom variety.
  • Some sources say it came from Germany, and some say that it came from France. The name is German, and 'Sommer' means 'summer' in German.
2014 heirloom
Landis Winter butterhead green Jeff Fleming of Augusta, Michigan (MI FL J) / Terroir Seeds 01 Beautiful butterhead type with green leaves and compact heads. Great taste! Excellent for a fall and winter crops as it is very hardy. We recommend to grow it in the second part of summer, so it does not bolt easily. White seeds. * Pennsylvania Dutch tennis ball type. 2008
Mascara oak leaf red Heirloom Seeds 11 Red oak leaf lettuce. Tender and sweet leaves, perfect for baby leaf salads. Slow to bolt. Dark seeds. * ?
  • First offered in the Seed Savers 2009 Yearbook by Sharon Vadas-Arendt of Longmont, Colorado (CO VA S), who purchased the seeds fro this variety from CV J. L. Hudson, Seedsman.
Merveille des Quatre Saisons butterhead red Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds 10 Very large butterhead lettuce. Tender magenta-colored leaves will turn yellow-green inside the head where they are self-blanched. Excellent flavor and striking beauty. Beige seeds. * A very old, pre-1885, French heirloom.
  • The name means 'Wonder of Four Seasons' in French, and it probably refers to this lettuce ability to withstand large ranges of temperatures, both hot and cold.
  • First offered in the Seed Savers 2009 Yearbook by Emma Gerard of Breil Sur Roya, France (FRAN GE E) and Amy Goldman of Rhinebeck, New York (NY GO A).
2014 heirloom
Odesskiy Kucheryavets leaf green CV Svityaz' 12 Beautiful green leaf lettuce with light yellowish-green crispy leaves. Perfect as a baby lettuce, or you can let it mature to a larger head before harvesting. Grey seeds. Leaves are not bitter even when it starts bolting, so it is a very good variety for hotter climates. * From Ukraine. 2014 open-pollinated Ukraine
Red Boston romaine red Heirloom Seeds 11 Very large and beautiful purple-red romaine lettuce with crumpled leaves. Leaves inside the head are light glossy green with a rose-red tinge along the edges. Delicious taste. * ? 2014 heirloom
Red Cash romaine red West Coast Seeds 12 Beautiful romaine lettuce with very dark purple leaves and partially open head. The darkest we ever grew. Beige seeds. So striking, it belongs to a flowers bed! And it is slow bolting too. * ?
  • Resistant to downy mildew races 1-27. MT0-30.
2014 open-pollinated USA
Red Rosie romaine red Johnny's Selected Seeds 11 The most beautiful red romaine lettuce we grew. Erect bright purple leaves with striking coloration. Majestic appearance and great taste. Beige seeds. * ?
  • Resistant to DM races 1-16, 19, 21 and 23.
2014 commercial
Rubin (Lettuce) leaf red Heirloom Seeds 11 Ruby red leaves are frilled, crinkled, and tender, making it a really beautiful loose leaf lettuce. Excellent sweet taste. Great for baby leaf salads in early spring. Quite early and grows fast. Beige seeds. * Originally from Switzerland.
  • First offered in the Seed Savers 2009 Yearbook by Sylvia Davatz of Hartland, Vermont (VT DA S) and Sue Graup of Wilmington, Vermont (VT GR S), original seeds from Sylvia Davatz of Hartland, Vermont (VT DA S) (2001), who received this variety from Switzerland.
  • The name means 'Ruby'.
2014 open-pollinated
Ruby leaf red Heirloom Seeds 11 Same as Rubin? Beige seeds. * ?
  • First offered in the Seed Savers 2009 Yearbook by William T. Arthur, Jr. of Des Moines, Iowa (IA AR W).
2014 open-pollinated
Verde Ricciolina leaf green CV Arche Noah 11 Beautiful green leaf lettuce with blond leaves and frilly edges. 'Cut and come again', or you can grow it for a large head. It is very early and grows very fast. * SAO39. Italian origin. The name means 'curly' in Italian. 2014 open-pollinated Italy
White Boston butterhead green Heirloom Seeds 11 Medium-firm round butterhead lettuce 12" in diameter, light green in color. Delicious buttery yellow hearts. * Very old heirloom variety, over 100 year old.
  • First offered in the Seed Savers 2009 Yearbook by Jim and Kathryn Tjepkema of Clarks Grove, Minnesota (MN TJ J), seeds from M. Schulyz of Monroe, Washington (WA SC M).
  • This is a quote from the 1947 Schell's Seed Company catalog about White Boston lettuce:
"Very uniform, solid heads. Color light green, with beautiful buttery yellow center, deliciously tender and tasty. Schell's White Boston is an early lettuce, easy to grow. We urge all of you who specialize in growing fancy quality head lettuce, whether an acre or fity acres, get acquainted with our strain of White Boston. It will prove a money-maker for you. For the home garden it is very desirable quality head lettuce. We sell many thousands of pounds of it."
2014 commercial heirloom
Yugoslavian Red butterhead red Seed Savers Exchange 11 Beautiful and very decorative butterhead lettuce with large, full heads, up to 1' in diameter. Leaves are deeply puckered and tinged with pomegranate red. Soft and delicious. * Heirloom. Saved by a peasant family in Marburg, Yugoslavia. 2014 heirloom

2013 Tomato Growout

2013 Pepper Growout

2013 Squash Growout

2013 Melon Growout

2013 Watermelon Growout

2013 Lettuce Growout

  Type Leaf Color Seed source Description History Year grown Variety type Country
Freckles romaine green
1. Veseys Seeds 05 (no seeds left)
2. Pinetree Seeds 08
Romaine lettuce with delicate green leaves flecked with wine-red splotches. Texture and flavor of a butterhead lettuce. Gray seeds. * ? 2011 (1 - crop failure
no more seeds
Guldrottningen butterhead green Jeff Fleming of Augusta, Michigan (MI FL J) 09 Green-leafed head lettuce with very compact heads. Very nice flavor. It is so cute! Light gray seed. * ? 2013 open-pollinated
Kupusnjara Salata leaf red
Jeff Fleming of Augusta, Michigan (MI FL J) 07 / AZ AR N 02 Stunningly beautiful pale green leaves with red/brown tint. Leaves redden in colder weather and get a little bit more 'ruffled' as heads mature. Dark seeds. * Seeds were collected in Croatia. 2008
open-pollinated Croatia
Lolita leaf red Heirloom Seeds 10 Very dark red leaf lettuce, absolutely stunning in appearance and so tasty! Grey seed. * ? 2013 commercial
Mercury leaf red Veseys Seeds 05 White seeds. * ? 2006
Moskovskiy Parnikovyi butterhead yellow-green Jeff Fleming of Augusta, Michigan (MI FL J) 09 / Andrey Baranovski of Minsk, Belarus (BELR BA A) Heading variety of lettuce with pale green tender leaves, best for the fall or overwintering in a greenhouse for an early spring crop. Wonderful flavor. Black seed. It also grows very well indoors. * Old Russian commercial variety. Bred in the early 1950s by VNIISSOK.
  • First offered in the Seed Savers 2009 Yearbook by Andrey Baranovski of Minsk, Belarus (BELR BA A), seeds from a Russian CV.
  • Introduced commercially in North America by Tatiana's TOMATObase Seeds in 2014.
2013 commercial heirloom
New Red Fire leaf red Pinetree Seeds 08 Beautiful red leaf lettuce with ruffled purple leaves with lighter core. Slow bolting. Light gray seed. Excellent flavor. * ?
  • Resistant to tip-burn, downy mildew, white mold, heat, and bolting.
2013 commercial
Oak Leaf oak leaf green CV Light gray seed. Compact and beautiful tight green heads with oak leaves. Slow bolting and hold their shape very well, even in warmer weather. Tender and somewhat crunchy, great taste. * Very old variety, introduced in the 1770s. 2013 heirloom
Plato II romaine green Pinetree Seeds 08 Romaine lettuce with dark green leaves with slightly savoyed texture. Crisp and mild delicious flavor. Black seed. Slow bolting. * ? 2013 commercial
Red Oak Leaf oak leaf red Pinetree Seeds 05 Dark seeds. Red oak leaf lettuce that it is very slow to bolt. The leaves are very beautiful in salads, tender and sweet. * Introduced in 1771 by the French company Vilmorin. 2005
Saint Anne's Slow Bolting butterhead green Jeff Fleming of Augusta, Michigan (MI FL J) 07 / Terroir Seeds 98 Dark seeds. Pale green butterhead lettuce, very slow bolting, very nice texture and flavor. A beauty. * ? 2007
Tatiana's Lettuce Mix Tatiana's TOMATObase Seeds This is a mix of many beautiful and tasty heirloom lettuces, grown in Tatiana's garden. We love the multicolored mix and grow it every year, both in the open ground and container, sprinkling seeds around and letting them grow to baby leaf stage for an early spring lettuce salad. * Lettuce seed mix created by Tatiana's TOMATObase Seeds for customers who like to sample heirloom lettuce diversity. 2013 open-pollinated Canada
Zluty Kaderavy leaf green Jeff Fleming of Augusta, Michigan (MI FL J) 09 / Seed Savers Heritage Farm, Decorah, Iowa (IA SSE HF) / IPK Beautiful yellowish-green lettuce with compact head and rounded leaves that form a dense rosette. Wonderful flavor. Light gray seed. Very rare. * Originated in Eastern Europe.
  • First offered in the Seed Savers 2009 Yearbook by Jeff Fleming of Augusta, Michigan (MI FL J), seeds from IPK via Seed Savers Heritage Farm, Decorah, Iowa (IA SSE HF).
  • Introduced commercially in North America by Tatiana's TOMATObase Seeds in 2014.
2013 open-pollinated

2012 Tomato Growouts

  • Tatiana's 2012 Tomato garden progress report is posted at

Tomatoville forum.

2012 Pepper Growout

Type Red : Yellow/Orange : Purple / White / Brown :
Sweet Bell
Sweet Kapiya / non-bell type
Sweet Kamba (cheese) type:

2012 Squash Growout

2012 Lettuce Growout

2012 Cucumber Growout

2012 Germination Failures / Lost Seeds


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