This section is from "The Horticulturist, And Journal Of Rural Art And Rural Taste", by P. Barry, A. J. Downing, J. Jay Smith, Peter B. Mead, F. W. Woodward, Henry T. Williams. Also available from Amazon: Horticulturist and Journal of Rural Art and Rural Taste.
All present who had tried the Flemish Beauty, had found it (in common with many other sorts), greatly improved in flavor by picking a few days before maturity, and ripening within doors. This treatment had also been found necessary by some on account of the liability of this pear to be blown off by the wind. P. Barry said that the treatment must be adapted to the peculiarities of the different sorts - that some pears of a soft, melting character, such, for instance, as the Flemish Beauty and Belle Lucrative, should be ripened in a cool room, or dry cellar, to prevent the process from being to rapid, and to avoid speedy decay. On the other hand, those of a hardier or more gritty nature, needed a much warmer temperature. The observations of others corroborated this statement. A dark drawer had been found the best place for a pear to complete its ripening, and to acquire its finest color. Whatever the temperature might be, that is best adapted to the maturing process, preserving a uniformity, and avoiding changes, was regarded of great importance; and also that too dry atmosphere was unfavorable to the ripening of winter pears especially, which had to remain exposed to it a long time, and which, if they once became too dry, never could be made to soften by maturity.
Dr. Ward had found the profits of market pears to depend greatly upon their proper ripening; it not unfrequently happened that a triple price was obtained for handsomely matured Bartletts over those equally well grown, but in a green condition. He had sold them for six dollars per bushel, side by side with those equally as fine in every other respect, that would scarcely bring two dollars, and which had not the tempting exterior of full maturity. He had also found selection a matter of considerable importance, and had obtained as much for the finest assorted Bartletts, taken from a large quantity, as he could have obtained for nearly the whole unassorted. The best Bartletts had sold at retail in New York city at twelve to twenty-five cents each.
The Seckel pear, although of such superlative high flavor, was very low-priced in market, although instances were mentioned where six to eight dollars per bushel had been obtained for finely grown specimens in the Boston market..