This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V23", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
The extra strawberry season of 1881 in the Hudson River Valley may now be said to be closed, and I note for the pages of the Monthly a few particulars in regard to new strawberries which are not yet generally known. First, and most assuredly foremost, stands - The Bidwell, which ripens with the first of the large berries. It must be accounted number one for productiveness on strawberry soil, by which I mean heavy loam highly enriched. There are varieties that do well and make paying crops upon light soil, but for stability heavy loam is generally conceded to be best. It would seem as if the extreme of productiveness had been reached by the Bidwell. The fruit is large in the sense at present understood by growers; color, crimson; shape, regular, long, conical; leaves hardy, and plant a robust grower. If the heavy berries of this fine new variety will bear carriage to a distant market, it will surely become a favorite. Pomologically the berry is "good," having a brisk fruit acid, and much refreshing juice.
Seneca Queen is quite different in shape from the preceding, being somewhat flattened or nearly round, but will require no greater number to fill the basket than of the Bidwell. To many tastes it may be superior to Bidwell. It is largely productive - will yield more baskets of fruit from the same ground than the Wilson and some others of the old favorites. The Queen and Bidwell will probably supersede half a dozen of the varieties now in cultivation, ripening at the same time. This fruit is dark crimson when fully ripe; is brisk acid, with none of the vinegariness of the Wilson.
The Primo, originated at Newburgh by Daniel Smith, is only a few years from seed and not yet disseminated, although planted in different soils for trial. This is near the size of Seth Boyden in its best estate; is bright scarlet in color; a firm berry; rather late in time of ripening; sub-acid, half melting and delicious; emits a delightful fragrance, and has many good points for the amateur. Leaves large and hardy, with foot stalks and fruit stems heavy and strong. The Primo may be planted to succeed the Charles Downing.
Oliver Goldsmith is so new that I can only speak of it as I saw it on the fruit farm of Mr. E. P. Roe, at Cornwall. The plant makes a fine show for vigor and hardiness. The fruit is long conical, somewhat resembling the Bidwell, but has also a glossy neck, and is lighter in color. It is an exceedingly fine fruit in every respect, and worthy of an extensive trial, even if not so wonderfully prolific as the Bidwell.
Triple Crown received its name from Mr. Hunt - the originator of this excellent variety - because of its usually stooling into three heads or crowns. The berry is a long oval, uniform in shape, and sound enough to bear carriage to a distant market. Triple Crown is as prolific as Seneca Queen, and more pleasing in appearance, being brighter in color and of better form. It will, I think, prove a most profitable variety for the general market. There is but little sharp acid in the fruit, which may be picked early. These varieties are all staminate. [We have supposed the proper orthography was Bidwill, but perhaps our correspondent's way of spelling it must be correct. - Ed. G. M.]