Manning, Robert 1784 - 1842

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Robert Manning was one of the most "thorough and accurate of American descriptive pomologists."

In 1823 he established in Salem, Massachusetts, what he termed his "Pomological Garden." He collected many cultivars of various kinds of fruits but pears were his particular interest. At one time he is said to have had 2000 cultivars of which one-half were pears. he recorded specimens from Belgium and in England from the London Horticultural Society. In 1838 he published his Book of Fruits, being a descriptive catalogue of the most valuable varieties of the pear, apple, peach, plum, and cherry for New England culture. All descriptions were drawn from the fruits the book was illustrated. He was assisted by John M. Ives and in 1844 Ives published a second edition entitled, The New England Fruit Book. A third edition in 1847 was called New England Book of Fruits.

At this stage in American pomology, cultivars were of the greatest importance (as they are today). Bailey states, "The scientific management of orchards has not yet risen." Manning was one of the founders of the Massachusetts Horticultural Society.