CHERRY. In Korea the cherry tree is an object of respect bordering on worship; and in Japan it is the occasion for a cherry festival in the spring of each year, when thousands of people collect in those places that are famous for their rose-flowered cherry trees, to admire their feathery loads of blossoms.
Many of these ornamental varieties do not fruit at all, and they are cultivated for their blossoms alone.
We of the West cultivate the cherry tree not so much for its beautiful flowers, its satiny-brown bark, and its leaves of glossy green, as for its luscious fruit.
The wood also of the wild cherry is valuable for cabinet purposes.
Several wild species of cherry grow in America, but the cultivated varieties, both sweet and sour, originated in Asia and came to us from Europe. They are grown in orchards in many parts of the country.
California ships the sweet cherry in great quantities to eastern states, and in New York the sour cherry is the basis of a large canning industry.
The cherry belongs to the genus Prunus, which also includes the almond, apricot, peach, and plum. Prunus avium includes the sweet cherries; the "Bigarreaux," firm, heart-shaped, and either light or dark, which is the favorite in California, and is shipped to markets all over the United States; "Hearts," soft and sweet, which are grown chiefly for home use; "Marascas," an Italian variety, which fur nishes the juice for the cordial "maraschino"; and "Dukes," which are light colored and somewhat acid. To Prunus cerasus belong the sour cherries, chief of which is the dark colored "Morello," grown largely in New York.
grown in the truck gardens on the eastern shore and sold in the large cities across the bay.
Innumerable fish, including the highly prized shad, inhabit the waters of the Chesapeake, and the reed grown banks of its tributaries are still haunted by the canvasback duck and the terrapin. Its chief source of wealth, however, is the great oyster beds which supply many of the eastern markets.
Chesapeake Bay is 200 miles long, from 4 to 40 miles wide, and from 30 to 60 feet deep. Baltimore, a great shipping port; Annapolis, the site of the United States Naval Academy; and Norfolk, a ship ping port and naval base, are situated on or near its shores; while the city of Washington is on one of its tributary rivers, the Potomac. Where the James River enters the bay is Hampton•Roads, an important military point defended by two forts. During the Civil War this was the scene of the famous battle of the Monitor and Merrimac. Besides the Potomac and James, the Chesapeake receives the waters of the Susquehanna, Rappahannock, York, and other rivers.