Transactions of the Massachusetts Horticultural Society 93-112 (March 6, 1880)

Influence of the Stock on the Scion and vice versa
Dr. E. L. Sturtevant

At the close of the business meeting, a meeting for discussion was held, William C. Strong, Chairman of the Committee on Publication and Discussion, presiding.

The subject assigned was the "Influence of the Stock on the Scion and vice versa," and was opened by Dr. E. L. Sturtevant, who said that he should feel diffident in coming before the Society with a paper on the subject, but for the deep interest in the discussions a year ago, which appeared to be greater than had been felt in any other subject, and the widespread interest shown by the unusual number of calls for the Transactions containing the report of those discussions.

Dr. Sturtevant said that it seems to be admitted by many of our best botanists and leading pomologists, that there is a reciprocal influence between the stock and the scion, but to what extent this influence is exerted, its boundaries, and the conditions under which it acts, does not, at present, appear to be well defined. The influence of bud variations, of cross fertilization, and of graft hybrids, is not in every case distinguished from the effect of the graft and stock upon each other, and hence a confusion. It, therefore, seems proper to bring together all the asserted cases where the stock has influenced the graft, and vice versa, in order that the evidence for making up our minds may be more fully under our observation.

Dr. Sturtevant expressed the opinion that it is in the power of the skilled gardeners and accurate observers, of whom there are so many among the members of this Society, to do much towards giving a scientific character to our Transactions, by aggregating their individual observations. If once the habit were established, of each one, as circumstances permitted, offering to the Committee on Publication, an account of each case of bud variation; of each case of influence of graft on stock; of each case of monstrosity, or of unusual variation, etc., in the course of the year the mass of material would be sufficient to form a publication valuable to science and honorable alike to the contributors and the Society.

Dr. Sturtevant then proceeded to read the following instances of the effect of the stock on the scion, and vice versa, which he had collected, with the assistance of the Secretary of the Society, beginning with those relating to the Influence of the Stock on the Scion:

Paul Dudley, F. R. S., who resided at Roxbury in 1726, spoke of a Bergamot pear tree, from which a scion was taken and grafted into a common hedge pear, but the fruit did not prove so good as the original, and the skin was thicker.—Phil. Trans., abridged, Vol. VI, Part 2, 341.

In 1850, A. C. Hubbard, writing from Michigan, said, "a neighbor of mine, who is a very close observer, took scions of the Esopus Spitzenberg apple and grafted over a tree which had previously been grafted to some other variety. The fruit from this tree far surpasses any other Spitzenbergs he raises, in flavor."—Pat. Rept. 1849-50, 282.

B. Hathaway, a nurseryman and fruit grower in Michigan, writes, "The result of my own observation and experience goes to show that the stock has an influence in determining every characteristic of the fruit. Although not always appreciable, it is often so strikingly manifest as to leave no room for doubt. ... I have a Northern Spy on Greening, and this tree alway gives me my largest specimens for the fairs, though pale in color; while two trees close by, grafted on Esopus Spitzenberg, always give fruit highly colored, but never so large." He also states that he has ten root-grafted Northern Spy trees on which the fruit is always alike, and forty other Spy trees on large seedling stocks on which the fruit is constantly and markedly varied.— Ag. of Mich., 1871, 139, 140.

Two instances are related by H. S. Tyler, of Dalton, Mich., of Baldwin grafts from the same tree following the characteristics of the trees on which they were grafted—one a seedling, small, sour, high-colored apple, keeping very late; the other sweet. The grafts were so changed that their identity was doubtful, though they were finally decided to be Baldwins.—Rural New Yorker, August 16, 1879.

P. Barry thinks the sweet and sour apple might be produced by grafting the Greening on a sweet apple stock in the way recorded of the ordinary graft hybrids, and that the striped apple referred to in the same article might have been produced by grafting a red apple on a green apple stock.—Gard. Month., 1869, 358.

My garden contains two peach trees of the same variety, the Acton Scott, one growing upon its native stock, and the other upon a plum stock,—the soil being similar, and the aspect the same. That growing upon the plum stock affords fruit of a larger size, and its color, where it is exposed to the sun, is much more red; but its pulp is more coarse, and its taste and flavor so inferior that I should be much disposed to deny the identity of the variety if I had not inserted the buds from which both sprang, with ray own hand.—Knight, Phys. and Hort. Papers, 278.

We know that a few of our best native varieties of the pear, when grown upon the quince, are more perfect than upon their own roots.— W. C. Lodge, Dept. Ag. Rept., 1865, 201.

A slight effect is sometimes produced by the stock on the quality of the fruit. A few sorts of pears are superior in flavor, but many are also inferior, when grafted on the quince, while they are more gritty on the thorn. The Green Gage, a plum of great delicacy of flavor, varies considerably upon different stocks; and apples raised on the crab, and pears on the mountain ash, are said to keep longer than when grown on their own roots.—Downing, Fruits, ed. 1872, 29.

I have lately seen some curious cases of a modification of the character of black grapes, alike in flavor, size, and color, by being grafted on the White Syrian and White Nice; notably that recent introduction, Mrs. Pince, had its bunches and berries both grown out of normal character, and its flavor spoilt by being so treated.— Gard. Chron., 1871, 1100.

A committee of the Southern California Horticultural Society reported that the Navel orange budded on the citron, lime, and China lemon, in each case showed marked and distinct characteristics derived from the stocks.—Southern Cat. Hort., II, 78.

Robert Thompson says: "It is well known that the stock will have an effect upon the variety worked upon it."—Pomological Magazine (Pomologia Britannica) under Ribston Pippin, III, 141.

The double scarlet thorn budded on the pear in 1866, grew with extreme vigor in 1867, and flowered abundantly in 1868, and bore fruit abundantly, which were not single seeded, but contained from two to four seeds. The haws had large, open eyes, and were of a flattened shape. The trees from which the buds were taken had flowered previously for several years, but had never produced a haw. After the fruit had ripened, both buds and stock died.
    Grafts of the same on pear stocks pushed splendidly in 1868, and formed leaves eight inches across, bore haws in 1869, though less abundantly, but with seed similar to that of the budded plants, and then died.
    Paul's Scarlet Thorn, grafted on pear, grew luxuriantly, and the individual flowers were very much larger than on thorn stock, but of less vivid color. The excessive vigor of growth of the thorn on pear seems to forbid its long endurance.
    Grafted on the quince, the thorn made nice dwarf plants.— Gard. Chron., 1870, 458.

Pears grafted on the hawthorn showed a resemblance to it in form and other points.

The editor of the "Gardener's Chronicle" adds: "We cannot shut our eyes to the increasing number of cases of alleged graft-hybridization. Very few of these cases have been submitted to the rigid scrutiny of competent observers; nevertheless the number of the alleged cases is now so considerable that the necessity for inquiry and direct experiment becomes urgent. So many interests are involved in this question that it must not be pooh-poohed because it runs counter to general experience and belief. Admitting, for the sake of argument, that some of the recorded cases are what they pretend to be, it must still be granted that they are quite exceptional, but this very circumstance renders further investigation all the more desirable. In our search after the why and wherefore of the exception we may perchance be able to light upon some of the 'reasons why' for the general rule—itself greatly standing in need of further elucidation."—Gard. Chron., 1870, 6.

M. Carrière twice inserted grafts of the Aria vestita on thorn trees growing in pots; and the grafts, as they grew, produced shoots with bark, buds, leaves, petioles, petals, and flower stalks, all widely differing from those of the Aria. The grafted shoots were also much hardier, and flowered earlier.—Revue Horticole, 1866, 457.

Some years ago we grafted the Styrian or Keele Hall Beurre Pear on the Citron des Carmes, which is one of our earliest summer pears, and the result is that the Sryrian, thus treated, is about three weeks earlier than the same kind on the ordinary pear stock, and better flavored.— The Garden, IV, 334.

A few years ago I cut off most of the limbs of my Jargonelle and Vicar of Winkfield and grafted both with Clapp's Favorite. They have commenced to bear, and those on the Jargonelle are two or three weeks earlier than those on the Vicar.—Stephen Adams, in Germantoum Telegraph.

I have also a Talman's Sweet, a root-graft twenty years planted, that until recently has borne very sparingly, while grafts cut from it and set in top of other trees have borne well and early.—B. Hathaway, Ag., of Mich., 1871, 125.

Grafting a young twig on an older stock has the effect of making it flower earlier than it would otherwise do.—Balfour's Bot., 284.

A scion taken from a young tree that has never fruited will be hastened in its growth when grafted on a mature tree, and bear sooner than it would if it had been left to itself.—Horace Piper, Dept. Ag. Rept., 1867, 815.

While grafting never effects any alteration in the identity of the variety or species of fruit, still it is not to be denied that the stock does exert certain influences over the habits of the graft. The most important of these are dwarfing, inducing fruitfulness, and adapting the graft to the soil or climate.—Downing, Fruits, ed. 1872, 28.

John Watson, St. Albans, thinks the stock on which a Marie Louise pear is worked, causes it to set fruit remarkably well.— Gard. Chron., 1869, 664.

The Double Yellow rose, which seldom opens its flowers, and will not grow at all in many situations, blossoms abundantly, and grows freely when grafted on the common China rose.—Carpenter, Veg. Phys., 195.

Thoüin found that three species of Robinia, which seeded freely on their own roots, and which could be grafted with no great difficulty on another species, when thus grafted, were rendered barren. On the other hand, certain species of Sorbus, when grafted on other species, yielded twice as much fruit as when on their own roots.— Darwin's Origin of Species, 231.

Downing asserts that when a graft is taken from one of these trees [of North American varieties of the plum and peach which reproduce themselves truly by seed] and placed upon another stock, this grafted tree is found to lose its singular property of producing the same variety by seed, and becomes like all other worked trees— that is, its seedlings become highly variable.—Fruits of America, 1st ed., 1845, 5. In the edition of 1872, page 4, this statement is questioned, and attention is called to the necessity of verifying it.

Cabanis (quoted by Sageret, Pom. Phys., 1830, 43) asserts that when certain pears are grafted on the quince, their seeds yield more varieties than do the seeds of the same variety of pear when grafted on the wild pear.—Darwin's An. and Pl., II, 312.

Two roses, one a light blush, finely formed but of undecided color, and the other very dark but not well formed, grew near each other. Buds of the light variety were inserted in the dark, which grew and retained all their habits of growth and foliage, as well as the form of the flowers; but the color, instead of a light and uncertain blush, was a rich, dark crimson, nearly but not quite as dark as the bloom of the stock.—G. W. Campbell, Mich. Pom. Soc. Trans., 1877, 451.

We find that varieties like Jonathan and Domine will do well on very hardy, early maturing stocks, like Gros Pomier and Duchess, though they fail when root-grafted.—Prof. J. L. Budd, of Iowa Ag. College, Letter of April 12, 1879.

In some instances the stock exerts a marked influence upon the scion, thus showing the cooperative system in use between them. The "Gardener's Chronicle" mentions an instance of a couple of Muscat vines, worked on the Black Hamburg, in the same house with a Muscat on its own roots. Those worked on the Hamburg start fully five or six days in advance of the one on its own roots, although they are nearly a fortnight behind the Hamburgs they are worked on. It is a curious fact that there has never been seen any difference in the ripening season, nor any effect on the fruit.— Josiah Hoopes, Proc. Am. Pom. Soc., 1873, 130.

Grafting the pear on the mountain ash is practiced in Nassau, and is said to retard the blossoming of the trees, and thus to adapt them for a climate where there is danger from spring frosts.—Loudon's Gard. Mag., 1842, 228.

A scion of Passiflora vitifolia (Tacsonia Buchanani) was grafted on a stock of the variegated P. quadrangularis, and has subsequently shown variegated leaves.—Florist and Pomologist, 1876' 168.

The habit of the plant is sometimes altered by grafting. Thus Acer eriocarpum, when grafted on the common sycamore, attains in Europe double the height which it does when raised from seed. Cerasus Canadensis, which, in a state of nature, is a rambling shrub, assumes the habit of an upright shrub when grafted on the common plum. . . . The common lilac attains a large size when grafted on the ash; and Tecoma radicans, when grafted on the catalpa, forms a round head with pendent branches, which are almost without tendrils.—Loudon's Horticulturist, ed. 1841, 283.

Buds of Bignonia grandiflora, some of which were taken from a natural plant, others from a specimen of B. radicans, were grafted on a plant of the latter species. The first graft was a trailer, its wood brown. The second graft became a shrub, its wood green. M. Pepin, quoted by M. Chevreul, Jour. Lond. Hort. Soc, 1851, 98.

Mr. Fairchild, in 1721, grafted the holm or evergreen oak, (Quercus ilex) on the common oak (Quercus robur) as a stock, the result being, that while the leaves of the deciduous stock fell in the autumn as usual, those of the evergreen scion remained just the same as if on their own roots.—Gard. Chron., 1871, 1100.

The stock has no other influence on the graft but that which the soil has on a plant; the latter will not grow in a soil which does not suit it, and the graft will only grow upon plants allied to it.— H. F. Link, Jour. Lond. Hurt. Soc., 1851, 42.

Following are instances of the Influence of the Scion on the Stock:

Henry Cane, in April, 1692, cut off a small plant of the common white jessamine, not larger than a tobacco pipe, at two joints above the ground and grafted with the yellow striped jessamine. It took, but grew feebly, and in four or five weeks died, and part of the stock died also, and was cut off. The next year it broke out at the joint below, with several shoots of the striped variety, and also made a strong shoot, from the root, of the striped variety. He tried the same experiment with several other variegated plants, but did not find any of them to transmute as the jessamine did.— Phil. Trans., abridged; Vol. VI, Part 2, 341.

Suppose a plain jessamine tree with two or three branches from one common stem near the root. Into any one of these branches, in August, inoculate a bud taken from a yellow striped jessamine, where it is to abide all winter, and in summer you find here and there some leaves tinged with yellow, even on the branches not inoculated, till by degrees in succeeding years the whole tree, even the very wood of all the tender branches shall be most beautifully striped and dyed with yellow and green intermixed. It is not material whether you cut off the branch above the inoculation to make the bud itself shoot. Even if the stock is not cut off and the bud does not shoot out, the same effect will be produced. Or if the bud lives but two or three months, it will in that time have communicated its virtue to the whole sap, and the tree will become entirely striped.—The Clergyman's Recreation, by John Lawrence, London, 1716, 65.

John Bartram, February 3, 1741-2, says, "Take a bud from a variegated jessamine and insert it into a plain jessamine; not only the bud will continue its variegation, but will also infect and impregnate the circulating juices that the branches and leaves above and below the bud will appear variegated."—Darlington's Memorials, 148.

When it is desired to turn a green jessamine into a variegated one, a single bud of either the silver-leaved or the golden-leaved will communicate its variegation to every part of the plant, even to suckers thrown up by the root. The same result takes place with the variegated laburnum, even if the bud should die, provided a portion of the bark to which it was attached continues to live. We have little doubt that the same thing would take place in various other plants.—Loudon's Arboretum, II, 1252.

Buds of a variegated jasmine were inserted in a plant of Jasminum officinale. The buds did not grow, but the bark of the stock closed up around them and healed over. The following year goldenvariegated branches appeared in the plant.—D. Wooster, at Royal Hort. Soc. Meeting, Aug. 4, 1875.

It is notorious that when the variegated jessamine is budded on the common kind, the stock sometimes produces buds bearing variegated leaves. Mr. Rivers, as he has informed me, has seen instances of this.
    The same thing occurs with the oleander (Gärtner, Bastarderzeugung, s. 611, gives many references on this subject).—Darwin, An. and Pl., I, 473.

A line of laburnums were budded in 1876 with a variegated variety; most of the buds died, but the next summer many of the stocks were variegated precisely like the variety which was budded on them. In another case several laburnums were budded about five feet high with a new golden variety. The buds mostly took, and suckers on the stock, some nearly down to the ground, assumed a beautiful golden yellow hue just like the sort budded.—The Garden, XII, 250.

A scion of a golden-leaved laburnum was budded on a greenleaved laburnum as a stock. The buds were inserted at two or three feet from the ground, and in the course of a few months not only did some of the green-leaved stocks produce golden-variegated branches below the point of union, but pure golden stolons or suckers were thrown up from the root. — Royal Hort. Soc. Meeting, Aug. 4, 1875.

Mr. Purser states (believed by Dr. Lindley in Gard. Chron. 1857, 382, 400) that a common laburnum tree in his garden, into which three grafts of the Cytisus purpureas had been inserted, gradually assumed the character of C. Adami; but more evidence and copious details would be requisite to make so extraordinary a statement credible.—Darwin, An. and Pl., I, 467.

The variegated variety of the Castanea vesca had been grafted, standard high, on an ordinary green-leaved sweet chestnut stock. The graft took, but from some cause or other afterwards died off; and subsequently a young shoot, with well marked variegation on its leaves, broke out from near the base of the stem.—Burbidge, Cultivated Plants, 61.

Passiflora Raddiana (kermesina) and P. Impératrice Eugénie were inarched with the variegated P. quadrangularis aucuboesfolia. From the branch above the graft branchlets were produced which bore variegated leaves, from which cuttings were taken which have perpetuated the two variegated varieties thus produced.— Florist and Pomologist, 1876, 168.

About 1722 Mr. Fairchild budded a passion flower whose leaves were spotted with yellow into a variety with plain leaves, and though the buds did not take, yet after it had been budded a fortnight the yellow spots began to show themselves about three feet above the inoculation, and in a little time after that the yellow spots appeared on a shoot which came out of the ground from another part of the plant.—Gard. Chron., 1871, 1100.

During the past season a mountain ash upon which was budded a variety with variegated leaves, commenced to push forth young shoots from the main body of the tree below the point where the bud was inserted. In every case these had variegated leaves. Now in view of the fact that these adventitious buds were there in advance of the original variegated bud, the presumption is that they were created green and that their normal condition yielding to the controlling influence of the new branches, caused the change to occur by the flow of sap from above. Other instances are mentioned.—Josiah Hoopes, Proc. Am. Pom. Soc., 1873, 130.

Three years ago a bud of the blood-leaved variety of Betula alba was put into a strong stock of B. alba, var. populifolia. After the bud had grown a foot it was accidentally knocked out. Over the place where it grew a bud of cut-leaved birch was inserted, which, growing, preserved the stock. Last spring, several inches below where the blood-leaved bud was inserted, a branch of a blood-leaved color put forth, showing that the coloring principle existed in the stock ten months after all the foliage had been destroyed. The new bud from the populifolia stock is the true European alba, showing that more than mere coloring had been transmitted.— T. Meehan, in Bot. Gaz., 1879, 165.

William Reid asserted that variegated willows would transmit their influence to the stock.—Gard. Month., 1869, 292.

Mr. Brown, of Perth, observed many years ago, in a highland glen, an ash tree with yellow leaves; and buds taken from this tree were inserted into common ashes, which in consequence were affected, and produced the Blotched Breadalbane ash.—Darwin An. and Pl., I, 473.

Mr. Rivers, on the authority of a trustworthy friend, states that some buds of a golden-variegated ash, which were inserted into common ashes, all died except one, but the ash stocks were affected (a nearly similar account was given by Bradley, in 1724, in his "Treatise on Husbandry," I, 199) and produced both above and below the points of insertion of the plates of bark bearing the dead buds, shoots which bore variegated leaves. Mr. J. Anderson Henry has communicated to me a nearly similar case.—Darwin An. and Pl., I, 473.

The influence of a graft of variegated abutilon ceased when the graft was removed.—Gard. Chron., 1869, 554.

The variegated Pittosporum Tobira was worked on a green-leaved stock of the same species, and though the graft did not take the contact was sufficient to cause the production of a variegated shoot below the graft.—Gard. Chron., 1870, 664.

Violet-colored tubers of potatoes grafted on white produced only negative results, but it was not so with young shoots. On a plant with four shoots with green foliage, one shoot was cut down and grafted with a variety having violet-colored foliage. A fortnight after the operation the stock was of a lively carmine red, and the growing scion was of a more violet tinge.—Gard. Chron., N. S., IX, 662.

According to De Candolle (Physiologie Végétale) each separate cellule of the inner bark has the power of preparing its food according to its nature; in proof of which a striking experiment has been tried by grafting rings of bark, of different allied species, one above another on the same tree, without allowing any buds to grow upon them. On cutting down and examining this tree, it was found that under each ring of bark was deposited the proper wood of its species, thus clearly proving the power of the bark in preserving its identity even without leaves.—Downing, Fruits, ed. 1845, 24. Professor J. P. Kirtland, in commenting on this and connected passages, says, "A graft of the Green Newtown Pippin will invariably render the bark of the stock rough and black (the habit of the variety) within three years after its insertion."—Horticulturist, II, 544.

If we cut up a long root of a seedling apple and insert scions of different varieties, a part on each root, the young trees which result from these grafts will have roots unlike each other. The difference may be very slight or it may be very apparent. The scion, then, influences the form of growth in the root.—Prof. Beal, Ag. of Mich., 1876, 203.

Not only are root-grafts of this (the Northern Spy) certain to root from the graft, but when budded or grafted on seedlings it will develop in them a tendency to form a great many fibrous roots. —B. Hathaway, Ag. of Mich., 1871, 127.

The gardener who in 1644 in Florence raised the Bizzarria orange, declared that it was a seedling which had been grafted, and after this graft had perished the stock sprouted and produced the Bizzarria.—Darwin, An. and Pl., I, 470.

A potato scion set into a tomato plant induced the latter to set small tubers in the axils of its leaves, as we see sometimes on the tops of potatoes. The grafting of an artichoke plant into a sunflower caused the latter to set tubers under ground.—Prof. Beal, Ag. of Mich., 1876, 204.

The following relate to the Reciprocal Influence of the Stock and Scion:

Whatever opinions may have formerly prevailed among orchardists, it is now generally conceded by intelligent writers and cultivators that the stock affects the fruit of the scion in quality, productiveness, and time of bearing; and that the scion increases or retards the growth of the stock, and in some instances imparts its own peculiarities to the root.—A. C. Hammond, Trans. III. Hort. Soc., 1870, 314.

The graft and the stock do, however, exercise a certain amount of reciprocal influence, the one on the other; and in certain cases hybrids or intermediate forms between the two are produced.—A. W. Bennett, Thomi's Bot., 182.

A variegated plant, whether used as a stock or scion, has the faculty of imparting its variegations to the leaves and buds subsequently produced.—Gard. Chron., 1870, 315.

A writer in the Journal de la Société Imperiale, etc., assumes an effect of the stock on the scion, and from it argues the effect of the scion on the stock, "As the scion is modified in its fruit, its leaves, its growth, its vitality, it is quite natural that the stock should be also modified in its constitution by the graft."—Hovey's Magazine, 1863, 396.

Gärtner (Bastarderzeugung, s. 619) quotes two separate accounts of branches of dark and white fruited vines which had been united in various ways, such as being split longitudinally, and then joined, etc.; and these branches produced distinct bunches of grapes of the two colors, and other bunches with grapes either striped or of an intermediate and new tint. Even the leaves in one case were variegated.—Darwin An. and Pl., I, 474.

My Monstrous Pippin was grafted near the ground about thirty-five years ago. It soon begun to bear superb fruit; large and fair, but too tart to eat raw. About twenty years ago I sawed off five of the limbs and grafted with a sweet apple called Hay Boys. Soon the Monstrous Pippin grew milder until it has become a sweet apple, though the Hay Boys is not so sweet as formerly.— Stephen Adams, in Germantown Telegraph.

Many instances of the influence of the stock on the scion are given in the Transactions of this Society for 1878, Part I, pp. 83 and 84; and 1879, Part I, pp. 7-11, 18, 22, and 25-33. In the "New England Farmer," Vol. XI,p. 97, is an interesting paper on the "Reciprocal Influence of the Stock and its Graft," communicated to this Society by James Mease, M. D., of Philadelphia, an Honorary Member, which was read at the meeting on the 29th of September, 1832, in which he gives many instances of this influence. Dr. Mease says, "In France they used to graft the same sort over and over again three or four times on the same stock." In a communication published in the same journal, Vol. XH, p. 75, he gives additional cases. In the " Gardeners' Monthly," for 1876, p. 306, is an account of some experiments in bud grafting.

The effect of the quince in dwarfing the pear and bringing it into bearing is so well known as to require only an allusion, as is also that of other dwarf stocks. Instances of the effect of variegated abutilons on the stocks on which they were grafted are so numerous and universally admitted that mere mention of them is sufficient.

Dr. Sturtevant repeated that the influence of the stock and graft on each other should not be confounded with bud variations. There is a variegated coffee tree in the Department of Agriculture, at Washington; if this had followed the grafting, it would have been ascribed to the grafting. Change of form in leaves is common, and also form of tree. He had seen the beech tree in the form of a column. Graft hybrids are yet rather rare, and, consequently, we know little concerning them. The immediate effect of pollination, denied by Professor Eaton, is shown by the fact that the melon was largely influenced the same year. There is a probability that this influence is more frequent than is usually supposed. Irritation sometimes causes the formation of fruit without the action of pollen.

Charles M. Hovey spoke of the subject as one in which he was much interested; and he was glad to hear of the general interest in it. He had read and thought a great deal upon it, as well as observed for fifty years. The mutual influence of the stock and graft should be kept distinct from sports. He had very little respect for the opinions of botanists on simply physiological subjects. He quoted the views of Thomas Andrew Knight on the subject as follows:

*Horticultural and Physiological Papers, page 223.

"Many gardeners entertain an opinion that the stock communicates a portion of its own power to bear cold without injury, to the species or variety of fruit which is grafted upon it; but I have ample reason to believe that this opinion is wholly erroneous, and this kind of hardiness in the root alone can never be a quality of any value in a stock, for the branches of every species of tree are much more easily destroyed by frost than its roots. Many, also, believe that a peach tree, when grafted upon its native stock, very soon perishes, but my experience does not further support this conclusion than that it proves seedling peach trees, when growing in a very rich soil, to be greatly injured, and often killed, by the excessive use of the pruning knife upon their branches, whsn those are confined to too narrow limits. The stock, in this instance, can, I conceive, only act injuriously by supplying more nutriment than can be expended, for the root which nature gives to each seedling plant must be well, if not best, calculated to support it; and the chief general conclusions which my experience has enabled me safely to draw, are, that a stock of a species or genus, different from that of the fruit to be grafted upon it, can rarely be used with advantage, unless where the object of the planter is to restrain and debilitate, and that, where stocks of the same species with the bud or graft are used, it will generally be found advantageous to select such as approximate in their habits and state of change, or improvement from cultivation, those of the variety of fruit which they were intended to support."*

Mr. Hovey said that a pear tree grafted on the quince, gives entirely different growth from one on the pear, and pears are higher colored from such a tree. The plum stock does not give the supply of sap to the peach that the peach stock does. If every stock influenced the graft, we should have no Bartlett pears or Baldwin apples, but these are all the same as he knew them when a boy. These, and the Vicar of Winkfield and Winter Nelis pears, the Green Gage plum, the Jacques and George the Fourth peaches, the Black Tartarian cherry, the Double White camellia, and the Gen. Jacqueminot rose, have been grafted millions of times on seedling stocks, and are still unchanged. The purple beech is the same throughout, and many others might be named.

Mr. Hovey stated that the observations of Mr. Knight extended over forty years, and his own over fifty years. He had grafted late varieties on the Madeleine and other early pears without hastening their ripening, and he doubted the statement that this effect was produced on the Styrian or Keele Hall pear, when grafted on the Madeleine. He mentioned a case in his own grounds, where it might have been supposed that a Beurre Bosc pear had been changed, but, on careful examination, it proved that a graft of the Lewis pear (probably cut from a sucker) had been inserted instead of the Beurre Bosc. An alleged case of the change of Beurre Clairgeau by grafting on the Aston Town (quoted by the " Rural New Yorker" from the "Gardeners' Chronicle"), might probably be explained in the same way. Loudon laid down the principle that grafts from all variegated trees would infect the stock, but the speaker discussed the subject only so far as respects influence on the character of the variety. He has Seckel pear trees grafted on hawthorn stocks, but never saw little haws on them; on the contrary, they bore the finest Seckels he had the previous year. There is no instance, to his knowledge, where it can be shown that when the true variety was grafted, it has changed. If trees could be made hardier by grafting on hardy stocks, that would be a very important point; but the idea of acclimation by this means is Utopian.

The Chairman said that Mr. Hovey had decided the matter to his own satisfaction, but he thought there might still be a question whether the stock does not hasten the maturity of fruit.

O. B. Hadwen said, in allusion to the reported early ripening of fruits grafted on early varieties, that he had noticed that the Northern Spy and Holden Pippin apples ripen earlier in cultivated ground than in grass, even though the latter is ploughed occasionally; but, on one farm, the Holden Pippin is several weeks later than the general crop. Though he had raised twenty-five acres of apple orchard, from seed, he had never seen a single instance where he was satisfied that the stock had influenced the graft. Nor could he recall an instance where he could say that the pear or plum had been so influenced. Apples vary on different trees, and on the same tree, but the stock should influence all alike. He attributed the superiority of the fruit of one tree over another, to a difference in culture or soil. He did not wish nurserymen to think that the stock would influence the scion. Botanists say that there are instances, but the weight of evidence is in another direction. If a graft had been taken from a Baldwin tree which had varied, and inserted in the original Baldwin tree, it would doubtless have regained its original characteristics.

Mr. Hovey again referred to Mr. Knight's views, and pronounced the statement that the Double Yellow rose was made to grow freely and open its flowers, by grafting on the China rose, an absurdity.

N. B. White thought the late ripening of apples in grass ground might be owing to the frost being kept longer in the ground. He had mulched pears heavily to keep the frost in and retard the blossoming, and in that way had got better pears, as the curculio does not attack the fruit from late blooms so much as that from earlier. He grafted a Porter apple tree for a neighbor, with scions of the same variety taken from a tree which produced remarkably fine fruit. At the same time he cut scions from the tree which he was grafting and put them in, and when they fruited he could not discover any difference. He thought the variations of which so many instances had been adduced were simply sports; and said that, though it is interesting to get the facts together, they do not establish any principle.

Edmund Hersey said that when he was a boy his father purchased a piece of land on which was an apple tree that always dropped its fruit before it was ripe. His father grafted one side of the tree with the Rhode Island Greening, and when the grafts bore, the fruit partook of the character of the stock with regard to dropping. The greatest number of apples ever gathered from the tree was twelve. The dropping might have been due to the soil. His father bought another piece of land on which was a natural apple tree which bore enormous crops, but every apple had a peculiar rot on one side; they would hang until frost came, but when gathered a quarter part would be rotten. Twenty-five scions were inserted in the tree, not one of which took, and it was afterwards budded with summer, autumn, and winter kinds—sweet and sour, and of all colors. The rot affected all the kinds; there never was a peck of apples free from it. A Baldwin tree was planted close to it and the old tree cut down; the Baldwins never rotted. The tree when cut down was somewhat rotten in the top; it had previously been very sound. The speaker thought these facts positive proof that the stock does influence the scion. His father had two Baldwin trees, one of which, by the roadside, bore very handsome fruit, though not very large ; the other tree, which grew by the side of the barn, bore larger fruit. When the latter was large enough to bear two barrels of apples it was removed to the roadside, and has continued to bear large, though not so uniform sized, apples.

D. W. Lothrop thought it useless to discuss the influence of the scion on the stock, unless we can show some benefit to be derived from it. The influence of the stock on the scion is more important. The late Samuel W. Cole believed in this influence and wrote upon it in his "American Fruit Book" and in the "New England Farmer" which he edited. But when he had presented to him a barrel of Red Russet apples, which had a firmer flesh and kept longer than the Baldwin, and was told that the variety was produced by grafting a Roxbury Russet tree with Baldwin grafts taken from the same tree as those used in the trees around, Mr. Cole could not believe in quite so much influence. 'We may admit slight changes, but not the production of a new variety, and the changes may not be in the direction of improvement. The speaker had a harsh pear which he grafted with Winter Nelis, and the fruit of the grafts was green, not larger than walnuts, inclined to crack, and uneatable. This was apparently a perfect instance of the influence of the stock on the scion, although the influence might afterwards have been out-grown. The leaf and habit of the tree were still the true Winter Nelis. The tree was grafted with another kind, which was not influenced by the stock. He has the Red Astrachan apple grafted on the Gilliflower, and the fruit is just as acid as any other.

The Chairman thought we could say that we know the influence of the stock on the graft is proved, and that it may be propagated. As to the influence of the graft on the stock, every nurseryman knows that the character of roots is changed, and that the roots of a row of Baldwin apple trees in the nursery will be alike, and the roots of a row of Roxbury Russets will be alike, and will differ from those of the Baldwins. Each row can be told by its roots.

Mr. Hadwen confirmed what the Chairman had said of the influence of the grafts on the roots of stocks. If part of the same lot of pear stocks are grafted with Bartlett and part with Onondaga, the two varieties can be distinguished by the roots. The Roxbury Russet under high cultivation gets to resemble the Greening in appearance. He had known a tree standing by a hog-pen, where the fruit grew very large and had scarcely any russet. This might have been wrongly attributed to the stock.

Benjamin G. Smith thought that some very notable examples of the effect of the stock on the graft had been adduced. He mentioned the very fine Winter Nelis pears exhibited by John L. Bird, which were produced by grafting on vigorous stocks, like the Vicar of Winkfield. Mr. Smith had increased the size of some of his pears from one quarter to one half in this way, but at the expense of quality. They were grafted into the tops of the trees; on the side branches the size would not be increased. He had grafted four or five kinds of apples on the Dutch Codlin, and all grew equally well.

Mr. Hovey said that Seckel pears would not be increased in size by grafting on side branches. He thought that neither the size nor the quality of fruit was changed by grafting. There are many conditions to be provided for in preparing for a crop of fruit. He had never known a variation of any kind, in quality, or any other respect, in all his experience in grafting.

Aaron D. Capen said that he has two trees of Vicar of Winkfield standing very near together, one of which invariably bears good fruit, and the other never, which he could attribute only to the effect of the stock, there being no difference either in the soil or treatment.

Mr. Hovey said that one year he had fifty bushels of Vicar of Winkfields, very few of which were fit to eat; afterwards he had crops all of which were fine.

Benjamin P. Ware mentioned an instance, which he learned from Major D. W. Low of Gloucester, of a Bartlett pear tree standing in a neighbor's grape border, which bore only very small, poor fruit. This appeared to be an instance of the influence of the stock on the scion; but Mr. Low removed the tree to his own grounds and now it bears as good fruit as can be found.

Mr. Ware spoke of an apple presented by Gideon R. Lucy, for the premium of one hundred dollars, offered by the Essex Agricultural Society for a new and superior winter apple. The variety offered was said to have been originated by grafting the Baldwin and Roxbury Russet into each other over and over again, but how many times was not stated. Specimens were shown at the fair of the Essex Agricultural Society, last fall, and were pronounced identical with the Red Russet. Not a particle of evidence has been produced that the statement of its origin by repeated grafting was correct. Professor Maynard, of the Massachusetts Agricultural College, (who believes in the influence of the stock on the scion), had a variety said to have originated in a similar manner, shown him, and a Mr. Lothrop had a similar claim. Mr. Ware read a letter to Professor Maynard, from George F. Eastman, of South Hadley, concerning the apple shown to Professor Maynard. Mr. Eastman received the statement from his father, on whose farm the tree grew. From this letter, it appeared that the tree was budded by the elder Mr. Eastman in the nursery row, with Roxbury Russet, but, before transplanting, and before it had borne fruit, was changed from Roxbury Russet to Baldwin, with the exception of two limbs, which were left by mistake, and bore Russets. The rest of the tree bore Baldwins, and as it was desired to have the tree wholly Baldwin the Russet limbs were cut off. Several years afterwards it was noticed that a limb just over where one of the Russet limbs had been cut off, bore apples different from those on the rest of the tree, and they have continued to do so for three or four years. These are Red Russets and they keep better than the Baldwin, and nearly as well as the Roxbury Russet. All the apples on this limb are Russets. It bears quite as well as the rest of the tree (which is Baldwin), and has always borne the odd year, and never in the even year.

Mr. Ware said there was no certain evidence that the stock supposed to have been grafted with Roxbury Russet in the nursery row, was not omitted in grafting (in which case the limb bearing Red Russets was part of a seedling tree), or that it was not grafted with Red Russet.

He referred to the statement that sweet oranges, when grafted on wild stocks, revert to the wild state in a few years (Transactions, 1879, Part I, page 23), and said that the apparent deterioration was caused by the suckers crowding out the graft. He had been unable to trace out any evidence that the quality of fruit had changed through the influence of the stock. He quoted from an address delivered by him before the Essex Agricultural Society in 1869, the opinion that while the graft has an influence in forming the habit of the roots of the stock, the stock exerts no influence upon the variety of fruit grafted into it; and said that his views on these points were unchanged. He had found nurserymen and tree pedlars selling trees as better, because double worked, but thought it an imposition.

The Chairman thought the subject of more practical importance than it was considered by some. Roses, particularly those of weak growth, will give a much more magnificent bloom when worked on the Manetti stock, than those on their own roots.

Mr. Hadwen said the Red Russet is well known in Worcester county, and that he never heard it called a cross between the Baldwin and Roxbury Russet. It is neither Baldwin nor Roxbury Russet, but is as distinct in form, color, texture, and juice, as any variety.

The Chairman said that in budding a row of Bartlett pears, for example, we find some much more vigorous than others, which he thought the effect of the stock.

On motion of Leauder Wetherell, it was voted to continue the discussion of the subject on the next Saturday.