Review of 'Genealogical Tree of the Peach Tribe' by M. Carrière in 'Revue Horticole'.
|Arbre généalogique du groupe pêcher (1867)
By Elie Abel Carrière
It is thoroughly understood that all varieties are not equally plastic; some are more so than others—all have not the same tendency to become permanent. Thus, while there are some which become fixed almost immediately, there are others that are only fixed with difficulty, or that cannot be rendered permanent at all. We have no guide, no means of telling beforehand, or on seeing a plant, if it will prove readily pliable or the reverse. Experience alone can decide this. Among indigenous plants there is a large number which, when introduced into our gardens, furnish examples of the modifications of which we have just spoken, and which prove to us how a type, by the simple fact of its being cultivated, may become so greatly modified and produce races that often far excel in degree of permanence, other plants that we consider good species. Take for instance the Carrot. In its wild state, the Carrot has a fibrous, tough, much branched root of a whitish colour. Nevertheless, we have procured in a few generations large, fleshy, fibreless roots of a red, white, or yellow colour, some short, some of moderate length, others very long. These varieties are fixed, for the most part, and constitute races that do not vary. From seeds of the wild Carrot gathered by himself in the department of Aube, far away from any residences, and in comparatively inaccessible situations, M. Carrière has obtained in the first generation long, spindle-shaped soft, fibreless roots, some of which were white, others yellow, and some even were of a reddish violet colour. And as with the Carrot so also with the Parsnip.