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both in March and September. Here are also redwood, prickled yellow-wood and lignum-vitæ.
Ginger is very common in Barbadoes, and red pepper of two sorts, one of them called bennet, and both very hot and strong-scented. Here also are
grapes, but not so good as on the continent. The cucumbers and melons are very large and fine, and especially the water-melons are extremely refreshing, and reckoned good for the stone. The sensitive plant, the humble plant, and the dumb cane, are also frequent in this island, with many other vegetables brought hither originally from England.
Besides the Damask and Provence roses, which may be seen in bloom all the year round, here are various sorts of beautiful flowers, particularly that called the St. Jago flower, the smell of which however is very disagreeable. The passion-tree, whose blossom is here called the vinegar pearflower, creeps along the ground like ivy; or else, with the water lemon-flower, is turned over arbors like our honey suckles. The flower, called in England the merveille de Peru, goes in Barbadoes by the name of the four-o'clock flower, because it opens in the evening. The flower is larger than a primrose, of the finest purple colour, and the seed is black, with an eye of purple
.. There is a sort of cabbage in this island, called the seven-years cabbage, which is much sweeter than ours, and shoots out many slips that produce others when transplanted. There is likewise plenty of excellent pulse; but the European apples, pears, cherries, gooseberries, and other shrub-fruits, do not thrive well. Of the potatoes of this island the inhabitants make a brisk smailbeer called mobly.
Among the vegetable productions of Nevis,
there are water-melons, of five or șix different sorts, some of which are as large as a man's head, and will melt in the mouth like a peach. Here *also are musk-melons, shaddocks, penguins, belleapples, sea-side grapes, aud cashew cherries.
The shaddock is à fruit shaped like an orange, and not unlike it in taste, though it has not so rich a flavor. It is of a beautiful lemon colour, and as large as a man's two fists. Penguins are of two sorts, one of which is round, about the size of an 'apple, and has a thick husk that covers the fruit, 'which is of a milk white colour, and full of small black seeds. They are an agreeable fruit, tasting somewhat like a strawberry, and are sometimes called by that name. The other sort, which is - smaller and very tart, is chiefly used for gargling the mouth in fevers.
Belle-apples are about as big as a small golden pippin, of a deep yellow colour, taste like a gooseberry, and contain numerous little seeds, like those of that fruit.-Sea-side grapes grow in large bushes on trees as big as apple-trees, and near the sea shore, as their name implies. They are of a red colour, and of a very sweet taste. The cashew cherries grow on a tree resembling the English dwarf apple-tree, but the leaves are of a lighter yellowish green. The fruit is generally of a deep yellow, but sometimes of a palish red; its shape is conica!, with the lesser end towards the stalk; and it is about the size of a middling pear. At the top of the cherry, in a little cavity grows the stone, by some called a nut, quite bare, and exactly slaped like a sheep's kidney. It is about an inch long, containing a kernel of a five taste, but the fruit itself has a harsh and uncommon flavour. A certain author tells us of a very singular use made
of this stone by the young ladies in the West Inë dies, who, when they fancy themselves too much tanned by the scorching rays of the sun, rub their faces all over with it, after having previously scraped offits thin outside skin. This causes their faces to swell, grow black, and the skin being thus poisoned comes off entirely in flakes in five or six days; so that they cannot appear in public for a fortnight at least, but then they liave got a new skin that looks as fair as that of a young child. In the pores of this stone or nut, it seems, there is lodged a sharp aromatic oil, of a caustic quality, which, if applied to the tongue, occasions an uneasy sensation for several hours; and it is this oil that takes off the skin of the face. Now, though this is frequently practised, our author does not remember above one lady who owned that she herself had tried the experiment. The whole operation she acknowledged was painful; but alas; what will not pride attempt ?
The calabash-tree is likewise the proluce of Nevis, St. Christopher's and several other of the Leeward islands. It spreads like a large apple-tree, and bears a fruit almost as big as a man's head, quite round, but is of no use exeept for bowls,
to scooped out; and then the shell is almost as thin and light as the thickest sort of brown paper. It seems that spoons, bouls, and other utensils for the slaves to eat out of, are made of calabashes at Barbadoes.
There is a tree in Nevis and the adjacent islands called diddle-doo, of the size and shape of a coulin-tree, but with narrow thin leaves. It bears a beautiful blossom, of the finest yellow and scarlet colours, somewhat resembling the flowers of nas
turtium. These are esteemed a sovereign remedy in the green-sickness, which distemper, however, is very rare in so warm a climate, and where the young ladies so frequently use the exercise of dancing and riding on horseback, which all toge. ther keep the blood and other juices of the body in their regular courses.
In the pastures of Nevis there is a bush, growing about two yards high, called a sage-bush, the leaves whereof are not to be distinguished from those of the broad green sage, either by sight or smell. The tea made of it is of a fine yellow colour, but so extremely bitter, that the best refined sugar cannot render it palatable.
There are jessamine bushes at Nevis (not mailed to the walls as in England) which bear flowers full as large as primroses, of a very fragrant smell. These flowers are as white as snow, and so thickly set together, that the whole bush, at a little distance, looks as if it were covered with a white Holland sheet:
We ought not to omit a very singular sort of vegetable which Mr. Smith describes, though he cannot recollect its name. It has neither roots, branches, leaves, nor flowers, but is round and about as thick as a common whipcord, and runs along the tops of bushes all manner of ways, til) it exceeds a hundred yards in length. It is of a most beautiful yellow colour, and entirely different from the bush which breeds and nourishes it; so“ that our author makes it a query, whether it ma not be of the misletoe kind, though he never saw it growing on bulky trees.
Another singularity our author takes notice of is, that in the mountain-plantations at Nevis, where they have asparagus produced from London
seed, he has known it fit to cut in three months from the time of its being sown; for there, instead of transplanting the roots, they let it run up to wood, in order to shade the bed from the scorching rays of the sun ; and the young ones that,
grow up under that wood they cut for boiling : but by this means, a bed will not hold good much above two years, and the asparagus is never large.
We shall close our account of the vegetables of Nevis with a plant called cassada, which is remarkable for being of a poisonous quality, and yet affording a good sort of bread to the inhabitants of many parts of the West Indies *. Cassada is a shrub four feet high or upwards, the stem of it being straight, tough, brownish, and very knotty, just like a crab-tree slick; and at the top it is beset ali round with long narrow leaves of a deep green
colour: In o der to make bread of this plant, the root of it is caretully scraper till the wbite part appears, and then it is rubbed hard against a tin
rater about two feet long, shaped like a nutmeggrater; and nailed fast to a piece of wood ; and, being very juicy, it is soon reduced to a soft mat. ter resembling chidren's pap. This substance is. then put into a hair bag, and pressed hard between two stones, till there runs from it a milk-white li. quor of a disagreeable smell, and which is rank poison ; for, if a turkey, hen, or other fowl, hap
* Dr. Durham observes, that many plants, animals, and minerals, which in one form are destructive to mankind, in another are useful and healing; and as one instance he mentions the cassada plant, which unprepared poisoneth, but prepared is the very bread of the West In. dies. Sir Hans Sloane says, it is used to victual ships, and is of the most general use of any provision all over the West Indies, especially in the hotter parts,