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.
Having learned through a friend that Mr. Prince, in the Pennsylvania Farm Journal, had challenged any person to produce a perfect fruit on a pistillate variety of strawberry, without staminate influence, I wish to state that I have at present a plant of Black Prince in a pot, with a truss of (to all appearance) perfect fruit There has not been any staminate in flower here for some months; neither do I suppose there are any in this neighborhood at this particular season. There can be no mistake in this instance, for I observed the flowers closely on their first appearance, as also on their subsequent development, convinced that the opportunity was one to test the matter fairly, not being a season when strawberries generally flower, so that there could be no chance of pollen being introduced from any source. I expect, however, to find the fruit seedless - at least, the seeds imperfect William Saunders. - Baltimore.
It is estimated that, with the season just closed, there has been grown in this vicinity, and sold in the Cincinnati markets, some three thousand bushels of Strawberries. This is about one-third below the annual average, in consequence of a partial failure in the crop of Washingtons.* Of this variety, more is cultivated than any other, because of their early ripening and hardy culture.
They are also a more certain crop than any other variety, as a general thing - but just in the nick of time, a severe frost, and prevalence of cold winds, while the fruit was in bloom, cut them short for this season.
Among amateurs, this berry receives but little attention, on account of its pale appearance, and absence of flavor - though it is considered among field growers as a money making berry. It rarely ever freezes out in winter, or burns out in summer. The Early Scarlet is also extensively cultivated on account of its hardiness and prolific bearing.
I promised in my last to give you the crop of, and cash receipts for, Strawberries grown by John C. Youtcy, of Campbell county, Kentucky - eight miles from Cincinnati. I have selected Mr. Youtcy - not because he was the largest grower - but because I could more readily obtain his statistics.
He has raised and sold about one-tenth of all the Strawberries vended in our markets the past season. His varieties, etc., being the three following: Two acres of Washingtons which produced sixty bushels, and sold for four hundred and twenty dollars. Five acres of "Hovey's Seedling," which produced one hundred and seventy-eight bushels, and sold for twelve hundred and sixty dollars. Three acres of "Hudson," which produced one hundred and two bushels, and sold for five hundred and thirty dollars. Gross receipts from ten acres, two thousand two hundred and ten dollars. The expense of picking, including the boarding of hands, was two hundred and twenty-five dollars. Expense of marketing seventy-five dollars. The probable cost of cultivation per annum is fifteen dollars per acre. Mr. Youtcy cultivates all his Strawberries on new, but very hilly ground. In each variety, he has the past season excelled, and defied competition. In "Hovey's Seedling," permit me to assure you without the fear of contradiction, that he never was beat in this country - twice taking the first premiums at our horticultural exhibitions, against amateurs, market gardeners, and every thing else.
* Known also as the Iowa. - Ed.
We regret that Mr. Barry did not find it convenient to spend one day while here, with the Kentucky growers of Strawberries. There are some fifty acres in cultivation in one settlement, within eight to ten miles from our city. More than half the Strawberries vended in our markets are grown on that side of the Ohio river. The receipts for sales by Mr. Culbertson, a neighbor of Mr. Youtcy, was twenty-five hundred dollars.
I had intended saying something as to Mr. Youtcy's experience with impregna-tors for his "Hovey's Seedlings." He has tried several staminates, and thinks now that he has hit upon the right. But this is dangerous ground for me to travel -and as it is conceded on all hands that our friend Mr. Longworth has the fixing of sexualities in all Strawberry matters, I must desist from further elaboration on this point.
By the way, I notice in the "Ohio Cultivator" of June 15th, that friend Bateham sets down the "McAvoy's Superior" as being too pale in color. This, of course, is news in this region - and we have no doubt McAvoy would be willing to treat his friend Bateham to a bottle of "Native," if he will only make his berry two or three shades paler than it now is.