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.
I send you a description of a new Strawberry, the most prolific I have ever known. This berry fruited about five years since, in my father's garden. Its history is this: My mother was in the habit of planting yearly, seeds from her best berries; most, of course, proved worthless, but this being distinct from all others, was fully tested and found on trial to be truly valuable. We gave it her name, and call it Lucy Fitch's Prolific It is a pistilate plant, and appears to be a cross between the Alpine and Hovey's Seedling. It resembles the former in foliage, although much more rank, the leaves being large and growing on strong long stalks, The fruit is of medium size, light scarlet, and in flavor resembles, though sweeter, the best wild Strawberries when fully ripe. It is borne in large trusses on strong stems, so long as to keep the fruit entirely from the ground. It parts from the calyx very freely, and continues in bearing much longer than Hovey's Seedling or Burr's New Pine. It is also very hardy, bearing our open winters well, and protecting so fully the flowers by its leaves as to seldom or ever be injured by the spring frosts, even when others are nearly cut off.
I can not tell whether this will prove as fine a fruit east and south as it does west, but if it should it will prove a great acquisition to the Strawberry cultivator. We have one serious draw back here in the culture of Strawberries, which is the havoc made with them by the larva of the May bug. Perhaps some of your readers may know of a remedy; if so, I hope we may hear from them.
As some parties are giving, through the press, accounts of the high promise of their new seedling strawberry plants, allow me to state that I now have the most promising one that I have ever raised.
The seeds were from Downer's Kentucky.
Sown April 22d, 1870, came up last of May of the same year.
At the present time (May 25,1871), the plant alluded to, has ten well developed fruit stalks and about sixty-five berries on it, most of them large.
In appearance and flavor it resembles its parent, and it is, also, very late in ripening. J. S. D., Fairview, Ky.