Puslapio vaizdai
[merged small][graphic][subsumed][merged small][merged small][merged small][merged small]

are many skilled horticulturists who are patiently seeking to attain results hitherto unequaled, and Nature, too, often takes a hand in the work, and gives us chance seedlings with preeminent good qualities, as, for instance, the Gregg Black-cap and Cuthbert raspberries. Since there can be no continued monopoly in these fruit prizes, the whole horticultural world is on the qui vive to discover them as early as possible. In this brief paper I will chiefly confine myself to the latest novelties in strawberries, for, among the other small fruits, few new things of much promise have been introduced since the appearance of my previous fruit papers.

The Marvin. This is a new strawberry of which I had great hopes, and in which I proved my faith a year since by buying it liberally at twelve dollars per hundred. I am reluctantly compelled to say that I fear it will never become popular. It originated with Mr. Harry Marvin, of Ovid, Michigan, and is said to be a cross from the Wilson and Jucunda. This is an excellent parentage, as far as the fruit is concerned, and as far as I can judge from one year's experience, the fruit is first-class,-firm and handsome; but, as is well known, on certain soils the plants of neither the Wilson nor the Jucunda are vigorous growers, and in many localities their foliage tends to burn badly. I regret to say that on my place at Cornwallon-the-Hudson the Marvin has developed these characteristics, and, side by side with many other kinds, exhibits a marked feebleness. That this defect is not confined to this locality, I learn from the Hale brothers, of Connecticut, who write me that, while the Marvin started out vigorously, it faltered during the hot weather, and that its foliage burned badly. This being true at the North, these evils would, in all probability, be exaggerated on the light soils of New Jersey and farther south. It was thought, last spring, that the Marvin was the coming new strawberry; but I must suggest caution in regard to it. If planted on heavy soils, thoroughly deepened and enriched, I think it may prove very profitable, for it is a large, very late, and very firm berry, well adapted to long carriage; but on light soils, and under ordinary culture, I do not think it will be remunerative, especially in the common matted-bed culture. I hope that further experience will show that I am mistaken. It is perfect-flowered.

The Bidwell.-I honestly believe that this is the coming new strawberry. I have fruited

it for two years under unfavorable circumstances, and it has taken the lead of everything on my place. I obtained my stock from Mr. T. T. Lyon, President of the Michigan Pomological Society, who is one of the most careful and trustworthy horticulturists in the country, and his favorable opinion of it is a strong indorsement to start with. He wrote to me: “I regard the Bidwell as especially desirable on light soils. I have hardly seen enough of it on other soils to form a well-considered opinion. Its failure to color the tips of the berries is, to my apprehension, its greatest lack as a market berry." Every variety of fruit in existence has its faults, and the best varieties are simply those in which good qualities greatly overbalance defects. At the same time, I must say that I found no difficulty with green tips in the Bidwell. Giving them time, they ripened evenly into large, beautiful, bright-crimson berries,-the true strawberry hue,-and having a rich, firm, meaty character and a delicious flavor. That the Bidwell thrives on the coldest, heaviest land, I know from experience. Indeed, so great Indeed, so great is its vigor that I think it will thrive on any land fairly capable of sustaining vegetation. Last year proved a severe test of all varieties along the Hudson, for we suffered from four prolonged droughts during which many of our best kinds faltered; the Bidwell, however, remained green and vigorous through them all, and not a leaf, to my knowledge, burned or scalded during the hot, dry weather. I therefore think it will prove as well adapted to Southern as to Northern culture. In season, it is early, if not among the earliest. This fact will make it more valuable in the South, and I think its firmness will adapt it to long carriage. It has been exceedingly productive on my place, and the plants naturally tend to produce large stools, or fruit-crowns, and thus it is peculiarly adapted to the narrow-row system of culture. It is perfect-flowered, and the plant sends out a long, vigorous pink


I have some accounts of the Bidwell on the light soils of New Jersey, and it is there regarded as by far the best and most promising of the new varieties, showing no tendency to burn or scald. One observer writes me: "It was completely loaded with fine fruit of large size, and the plant itself would be an ornament of any garden. I measured one stool that was several feet in circumference." I can scarcely believe

[graphic][merged small]

that this was one plant, and yet the "stooling-out" qualities of the variety are remarkable.

The Oliver Goldsmith.-This variety promises to approach the Bidwell closely in value. After two or three years' trial I thought so highly of it that I bought the entire stock of the originator. I have not yet tested it on a sufficient variety of soils to speak with confidence, but hope great things from it. It has thus far been exceedingly vigorous, and productive of large, deep


crimson, and good flavored berries. After another year's test I think I can learn its comparative worth. It is perfect-flowered.

The Shirts.-I have not fruited this variety, but shall do so in perfection the coming season. It is another Michigan berry, and in vigor and habit of growth it so closely resembled the Bidwell that I called Mr. Lyon's attention to the fact. He wrote to me as follows: "I had not noticed a special similarity between the Shirts and the Bidwell, although they do not differ greatly

[graphic][merged small]

in growth with me on a sandy loam. The Bidwell is a taller and stronger plant; both berries are long-conical in form, but the Bidwell is usually the longer. They differ essentially in color, the Shirts being much the darker berry, also I think more inclined to become distorted and cockscombed in form. In flavor I think the Bidwell is milder, and I think it is a firmer berry. The Shirts is higher flavored and richer."

The Shirts was received late in the season, and the plants were so injured by long carriage that I doubted whether they would live, especially as the long drought of May had already set in; but such was the native vigor of the variety that it not only grew but took entire possession of the ground, and the original plants, so far from exhausting themselves by their numerous runners,

developed into enormous stools, some of which produced very fine berries last fall. I am so favorably impressed by this newcomer that I shall plant it largely this spring. It is perfect-flowered.

The Triple Crown.-This berry has been steadily winning my attention and favor. Its superb flavor is one of its chief attractions, and this is a prime quality in a strawberry. It is almost as solid as an apple, and yet when ripe very juicy and exceedingly rich. It therefore is an excellent berry for canning. It is a very dark crimson, from medium to large in size, and improves greatly under high culture. It has proved very vigorous and productive on my place. Its great firmness adapts it to long carriage, but its juiciness tends to cause it to decay after being picked, if

« AnkstesnisTęsti »