Garden and Forest 3(132): 427 (Sept. 3, 1890)
Earliness from Unripe Seed
E. S. Goff
University of Wisconsin, Madison

DR. STURTEVANT'S remarks on page 355, alluding to experiments at Geneva in growing Tomatoes from unripe seed, invite a reply, which I have delayed offering for a few days, until the different strains now growing in the garden of the Wisconsin Agricultural Experiment Station should have ripened their first fruits. A brief history of the case is this seed of the Cook's Favorite Tomato has been saved from very immature fruits through five seasons, the fruits being selected in every case from the plants grown from immature seed. The fruits from which the seed was saved had not attained full size, and exhibited none of the indications of ripeness.

The present season, the first fruit from the immature seed ripened on August 8th, while that from plants grown every year from thoroughly mature seed ripened August I4th, showing a gain in this case of six days in favor of the immature seed. The dates of maturity of the two selections, that is, from the immature seed and from the ripe seed, in our Geneva plantings are not at hand, but it is my impression that in some instances the gain has been greater than this. In a slightly different strain which was originated in i889, by selecting thoroughly ripened fruits from the plants grown for three seasons from immature fruits, the first fruit ripened this season ten days in advance of that from the seed grown continuously from ripe fruit.

This experiment, including certain branches not here mentioned, has proved most interesting and instructive; and it is our intention to publish the results in detail when carried a little farther. I will only add here that the increase in earliness is accompanied by a marked decrease in the vigor of the plant and in the size, firmness and keeping quality of the fruit.