This section is from the book "The Florist And Garden Miscellany". Also see: All New Square Foot Gardening: Grow More in Less Space!.
These flakes, or striped Auriculas, have all their partisans, but they do not absolutely hold the first rank. Nevertheless they are highly valuable when they are glossy and look like velvet, when their stripes are clear, and neatly divided from the bottom to the edge of the flower; the stripes are always either white or yellow; the whiter the stripes are, the finer; if yellow, the more like gold, the more agreeable. The bottom ought to be perfectly round, and not any ways angular, lest it should so fall out, that the stripes, mixing with the bottom, would render the flower very disagreeable, if not insupportable.
Though some authors that have treated of flowers have attributed these stripes to the want of sap, and others to the weakness or sickness of the plant, yet it may be observed, that many of these striped Auriculas are as large, and even more so, than others of the most colours.
There are many of them larger, or wider, than a broad crown-piece; so, as to what concerns the Auricula, I cannot agree with these gentlemen; my opinion is, that these stripes are plainly a sport of Nature, in which she does not in any degree weaken or exhaust herself. Surely the bare reasonings of the most able naturalists ought never to prevail over every-day experience.