11 JULY 1931, Page 14


This bumper year for strawberries, a berry that had been under a cloud, marks a curious botanical fact. Almost all our hybridized and even our specially selected fruits need constant supervision if they are not to relapse ; but the strawberry is almost peculiar in this that only the first of the buds on the runners carry the prolific virtues of the parent plant. Such care was not taken during the War (because there was too little 'sugar to preserve the fruit), and strawberries suffered such degeneration that the malady appeared to be chronic ; and a number of other ills supervened. Happily selection has at last recovered the old quality, at least in a certain number of varieties, such as Royal Sovereign and the rather later and more purple Bedford. It has been a bumper year for straw- berries ; and a Canadian visitor has assured some Of us that no fruit on the American Continent can compare with the English berry in flavour. Happily, too, the art and practice of tinning has developed just in time to preserve any super- fluity of the fruit in its full savour.