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.
The Pennsylvania Fruit - Growers' Society have recently issued, through their Committee on Nomenclature, a "Pomological formula of description," for the classification, description, and identifying of varieties of fruits. It makes five divisions: 1st, the origin and history; 2d, form and habit of tree or plant; 3d, external characteristics of fruit; 4th, internal characteristics of fruit; 5th, miscellaneous characteristics of fruit. These are again subdivided into classes and sections, the whole covering really nothing new to pomologists, but falling short of what is required to obtain correctness from in inexperienced describer in not delineating forms and colors, and the applications of terms - two items which we have found pomologists to differ upon perhaps more than aught else in description.
Among pomologists it has long been conceded that the form and habit of tree, color of young wood and foliage, are more demonstrative and conclusive of identity or variety than the fruit; but the subject has become so immense, the number of varieties so great, that a work prepared, giving these points in detail, so as to be available for daily use, would be so massive as to entirely ruin any publisher who should attempt its publication. No system of classifaction which has ever yet been attempted has resulted in any gain to practical use. It is well to have - and there should always be - order and system in describing, and, if possible, a rule for forms, colors, consistency, size, etc., but the more plainly and simply it is written out, the greater, to our view, is the scientific and practical value. A system of classification into orders, sections, etc., which does not enable its author by it to identify any variety on examination, can have little value except to mystify and confuse. We shall look anxiously for the first report of the above committee, and suggest that one of their first labors be to tell us all about the Vandervere Apple.