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Burbank, Luther, 1849-1926 / Luther Burbank: his methods and discoveries and their practical application

Luther Burbank -- the sum of his work with plant life -- what it has meant to science and agriculture,   pp. [155]-[201] PDF (10.3 MB)

Page 200

as that hybrids are relatively uniform in the first
generation, and highly diversified in the second
and a few succeeding generations. But it must be
understood that this was the essential discovery
that made possible a large part of my successes in
producing new varieties by hybridization. And it
must further be recalled that the facts in question
were ardently contested by large numbers of the
leading botanists and the most authoritative stu-
dents of hereditary theory.
It was the demonstration made a thousand
times over at the experiment gardens at Santa
Rosa and Sebastopol that first showed in a com-
prehending and convincing way that such is the
operation of the principles of heredity in deter-
mining the characteristics of hybrid generations.
And, as has elsewhere been suggested there is
no doubt that it was these demonstrations that
prepared some of Mr. Burbank's most eminent
critics, including Professor de Vries, to accept the
Mendelian statement of this proposition when it
came finally to their attention.
It may be added that the subsequent history of
such aspects of the problem as came to be associ-
ated with the name of Mendel has shown curious
analogy with the history of the Weissmannian doc-
trines to which reference has been made in
another connection.

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