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.
By Charles Downing. Third appendix to the second revised edition. Mr. Charles Downing's edition is an essential to every intelligent Pomologist, and will long remain a memento of the talents and industry of the author. There is nothing like it in the world, and it is one of those great works which astonish Europeans, and of which even Americans feel proud. Mr. Downing has now reached an age when most men retire from active life. Alone in the world, and deprived so recently of one who has been half his life to him, the world may feel still more grateful to him that he works on and on for them. It is a debt the world will be grateful in acknowledging, and will be slow to forget.
In this task Mr. D. has collected the histories and descriptions of all the deserving fruits that have appeared since his last supplement. Many of the new apples are of Southern origin. Of cherries, sixteen new ones are introduced, but many of them of foreign origin. Thirteen grapes, sixteen peaches and seven plums are described. Pears are only ten, and four of these are European. It would seem as if there was a lull in the production of American varieties. In regard to the Keiffer pear, raised at Rox-boro (not Roxbury), near Philadelphia, it may be worth noting in view of the divergent views of its value, that Mr. Downing says, " to have it in perfection, it should be gathered when fully grown and ripened in the house."
In regard to raspberries and strawberries, they are so easily raised, and succeed each other in such vast hordes that we have thought they were scarcely worth recording in a work of permanent value like this. Mr. Downing seems to be somewhat of the same opinion now. He says: "The Black cap family is now numerous, and of large size and good quality," and then proceeds to lump them as a whole without individual descriptions: Sweet Home, Surprise, Elsie, Dun can, Hamilton, etc., - describing, however, the Gregg in another place. Mr. Downing thinks, however, there is room for a perfectly hardy, bright colored red raspberry, of high quality, and flesh sufficiently firm to bear transportation to a long distance. He thinks the raiser of such a variety ought to be richly rewarded.