This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V24", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
Pliny, as well as Linnaeus and most modern botanists, includes amongst Plums the Apricot (Prunus Armeniaca), a tree most extensively cultivated, and which sows itself very readily in cultivated grounds over South-eastern Europe, Western Asia and East India, but its native country is very uncertain. The ancients called it Armeniaca, as having been brought from Armenia into Italy, where it is not indigenous ; also Prsecoca, Praaecoqua and Praecocco; and under one or other of these names it is mentioned by Dioscorides, by Galen, by Columella (who is the first who speaks of its cultivation) by Pliny (who, about ten years after Columella, asserts that it had been introduced into Borne about thirty years), by Martial, etc. Democritus and Diophanes give it the name of Bericocca. analogous to the Arabian Berkac and Berikhach, the probable origin of the Italian names of Ba-cocca, Albicocca, and even, according to Cesal-pin, Baracocca; and, lastly, Paolo Egineta, according to Matthioli, has spoken of these fruits-under the name of Doracia. Although some of these names, even in modern times, have been occasionally misapplied to a variety of Peach, yet they all properly designate the Apricot and show that that fruit was known in very remote times.
Having never been very much appreciated, except for its odor, there was not in former days any great propagation of varieties of it. Micheli, however, under the Medici, enumerates thirteen among the fruits cultivated for the table of Cosmo III. - The Garden.