This section is from the book "The Fruit Manual: Containing The Descriptions And Synonyms Of The Fruits And Fruit Trees Of Great Britain", by Robert Hogg. Also available from Amazon: The Fruit Manual.
Fruit, generally produced in pairs, rather below medium size; ovate-cordate, and irregular in its outline. Skin, of a fine dark clear red, assuming a deeper colour when at maturity. Stalk, an inch and a half to an inch and three-quarters long, stout at the insertion, and placed in a narrow and irregular cavity. Flesh, purple, tender, juicy, sweet, and well-flavoured.
As an early cherry this is a fruit of first-rate excellence, far surpassing the Early May, which has hitherto been cultivated more on account of its earliness than any intrinsic merit it possesses; and on this account Baumann's May, as it becomes more generally known, must ultimately supersede it. This excellent variety ripens in the third or last week in May.
The tree is a most abundant and early bearer, with strong and vigorous shoots, and large dark-coloured leaves, but not like those of a Bigarreau; neither is the character of the fruit in accordance with that class: hence Mr. Downing dropped the name of Bigarreau, and substituted that which I have adopted.
I received it in 1846 from Messrs. Baumann, of Bolwyller, near Mulhausen, in Alsace.
Very much resembles Black Tartarian, with which I made it synonymous in the last edition of this work; but it is inferior in quality to it. The tree is a free grower, a better bearer, and more hardy than Black Tartarian.
Belcher's Black. See Corone.
Fruit, small, produced in clusters; heart-shaped, with a shallow but well-defined suture on one side of it. Skin, dark crimson, with minute yellow mottles over it. Stalk, an inch and a half to an inch and three-quarters long. Flesh, yellowish, firm, sweet, and very nicely flavoured. Juice, pale.
This is a small Bigarreau, which hangs on the tree as late as the first week in October; and neither birds nor wasps touch it.
Belle Audigeoise. See Heine Hortense. Belle de Bavay. See Heine Hortense. Belle de Chatenay. See Belle Magnifique.
Fruit, generally produced in pairs; large, round, slightly flattened at the base and the apex, as well as on the side, which is marked with an incipient suture. Skin, transparent, so much so as to show the texture of the flesh, of a beautiful amber colour, mottled with red, particularly where it is exposed to the sun, and becoming more so the longer it hangs. Stalk, from an inch and a half to two inches long, stout, and placed in a flat depression. Flesh, amber-coloured, tender, and very juicy, sweet, and without any admixture of acid. Stone, small for the size of the fruit, roundish.
A most delicious cherry; ripe the beginning of July. The tree is vigorous and spreading in its growth, perfectly hardy, and succeeds well as a standard or on a wall. It is not, however, a very abundant bearer. The leaves are very broad, of a dark green colour, and deeply dentated.
According to the "Bon Jardinier," this variety was raised at Choisy, near Paris, about the year 1760, by M. Gonduin, gardener to the king, Louis XV.
Belle de Laecken. See Peine Hortense.