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Fritz Bahr's commercial floriculture; a p 




3 1924 003 347 667 




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Library 



The original of tinis book is in 
tine Cornell University Library. 

There are no known copyright restrictions in 
the United States on the use of the text. 



http://www.archive.org/details/cu31924003347667 



fritz bahr's 
Commercial Floriculture 



DEDICATION 

11 am dedicating this book to my friend, 
Mr. A. T. De La Mare, the able editor of 
The Florists Exchange, as a token of my 

appreciation of his untiring efforts in pro- 
moting and encouraging everything making 
for the advancement of American floricul- 
ture. To me a kind thought, word, or deed 
right now, means so much more than a 
marble monument a little later. 




FLORICULTURE 

To my mind, as wonderful as anything connected with the 
growing of plants, is the contents of a package of seeds, say, for 
instance, of Cinerarias. Looking at the tiny, hard specks 
it seems almost impossible that within them lies, in a dormant 
state, that which with a Uttle earth, moisture, warmth, sunshine 
and air, will in the course of a few months, grow and develop into 
hundreds of plants covered with thousands of bright, cheerful 
blossoms in an endless array of shades and color combinations, 
hardly two of them alike, to greet us in the greenhouse, while a 
blizzard and zero weather may rage outdoors. 

I cannot look at those flowers and think of the seeds they came 
from, without realizing how little we actually know about the 
phenomena of Nature and all the hidden forces behind her. I keep 
on wondering, and finally come to the conclusion that while man 
may some day solve all mysteries, it won't be in our time. Mean- 
while, why not be happy in being able to have a hand in growing 
the plants from seed to blossom time ? It surely is a great privilege. 

To be gardeners, to enjoy and appreciate the chance to work 
among living plants, should help make us better men, with a higher 
conception of our responsibilities and duties in life, a keener realiza- 
tion of life itself, a greater consideration for the rights of all our 
feUow men, and a deeper sense of gratefulness. 

F. B. 



FRITZ BAHR'S 

COMMERCIAL 
FLORICULTURE 

A Practical Manual 
for the Retail Grower 



By 

FRITZ ^HR 

Highland Park, Illinois 



With Two Hundred and 
Eighty-eight Illustrations 






NEW YORK 
THE A. T. DE LA MARE COMPANY, INC. 



Copyright 1922 by 

The a. T. De La Mare Co., Inc. 

(All rights reserved) 

Second Printing 
June, 1923 



CONTENTS 

PAGE 

Dedication 3 

A Few Words on Floriculture 7 

Preface 15 

PART I 

THE RETAIL GROWER'S METHODS pages 

Chapter 1. The Retail Grower and His Business 17-36 

The Retail Grower of Today, 17 — Changes from Yester- 
day, 19— The Outlook for the Future, 21— Starting into 
Business, 23 — The Wisdom of Branching Out, 29 — A Few 
Pointers for the Beginner, 30 — The Value of Advertising, 
31— A Few Words about Success, 34. 

Chapter 2. Indoors and Outdoors All the Year 'Round.37-72 
Things to be Done and Thought of by the Busy Man 
During each Month of the Year: January, 38 — Febru- 
ary, 42— March, 45— April, 48— May, 51— June, 54— 
July, 56 — August, 57 — September, 59 — October, 64 — No- 
vember, 67 — December, 69. 

Chapter 3. The Retail Grower and His Equipment.. 73-1 00 

The Retail Grower's Establishment, 73 — The Show 

Ground, 78— The Retail Grower's Benches, 80— The 

Propagating Bench, 82 — Hotbeds, 85 — Coldframes, 87 — 

The Soil, 90 — Composts, 93 — Manures and Fertilizers, 94. 

Chapter 4. Practical Operations in the Growing End 

OF THE Business. . . 101-122 

Greenhouse Heating, 101 — Watering Plants Indoors, 
102— Ventilating, 104— Shading, 108— Soil Drainage Prin- 
ciples, 109 — Seed Sowing, 111 — The Art of Potting, 111 
— Crop Rotation and Its Results, 113 — Fumigating and 
Spraying, 116 — Notes on Diseases of Plants, 118 — The 
Winter Protection of Hardy Plants,' 119. 

Chapter 5. Side Line Possibilities for Retail Growers. 123-156 
Landscape Gardening: Is It Worth Considering? 123 — 
Drainage Work and Grading, 127 — Laying Out Walks 
and Drives, 128 — How to Make a New Lawn, 131 — Bor- 
der and Shrub Planting, 133 — Special Features in the 
Garden, 137 — Raising Shrubs as a Side Line, 138 — How 
About Hedges ? 142 — Handling Conifers and Other Trees, 
145— Raising Fruit Trees and What It Offers, 146— Seed 
Selhng, 148— Selling Fertilizers, 149— Storing Plants for 
Your Customers, 150 — The Importance of Cut Flower 
Arrangements, 152. 



CONTENTS— Con/mued 

PAGES 

Chapter 6. Important Flower Days of the Year... 157-180 
Christmas and Its Increasing Importance, 157— Christ- 
mas Advertising, 159— Preparing for Christmas, 160— Dis- 
playing the Holiday Stock, 162— DeHvermg Christmas 
Orders, 163— Keeping a Record Afterward, 163— Made-up 
Christmas Baskets, 164— Holly and Holly Wreaths, 166— 
Boxwood's Increasing Importance, 167— Flowering, Ber- 
ried, and Decorative FoUage Plants, 169— Christmas Bulb 
Stock, 170— Cut Flowers at Christmas, 171— Easter and Its 
Activities, 172— Preparations for Easter, 174— Memorial 
Day, 175— Mother's Day, 177— Other Flower Days, 179. 

Chapter 7. All Kinds of Plant Materials for the 

Retail Grower ■ 181-234 

Annuals, What They Are and Do, 181— For Summer 
Flowering, 182— For Flowering Under Glass, 183— Aqua- 
tics, 185— Basket and Window Box Plants,, 188— Bedding 
Stock, 193— Bulbs, 197— Conifers for the Florist to Grow 
On, 203— Hardy Ferns, 206— Perennials and Biennials 
arid How to Use Them, 212— Plants for Rockeries and 
Rock Gardens, 221— Roses for Outdoor Flowering, 224— 
..Trees for Lawn and Street Planting, 226— Miscellaneous 
Flower and Plant Lists, 233. 



PART II 



A CULTURAL MANUAL FOR RETAIL GROWERS 

Introduction 237-240 

Plants for the Retail Grower and How to Grow Them^ 



PAGE 

AbeHa 240 

Abies 240 

Abutilon 241 

Acacia 241 

Acalypha 243 

Acer 243 

Achillea 243 

Aohyranthes 244 

Aconitmn 245 

Acroclinium 245 

Adiantum 245 

Agathsea 246 

Ageratum. . .■. 247 

Akebia 247 

Aloysia 248 

Alternanthera 248 

Althaea 249 

Alyasum ; 250 

Amaryllis 7~. ... 251 

Ammobium 252 

Ampelopsis 252 

Anchusa 253 

Anemone 253 

Anthericum 253 



PAGE 

Antirrhinum 255 

Aquilegia 257 

Araucaria 257 

Ardisia 258 

Areca 258 

Artemisia 259 

Asparagus 259 

Aspidistra. . . : 263 

Asters 265 

Astilbe..... 269 

Aubretia 270 

Auouba., 270 

Azaleas 272 

Baptisia 274 

Begonias 274 

Bellis 281 

Berberis 281 

Bigmonia 283 

Bocconia 283 

Boltonia 284 

Boronia 284 

Bougainvillea 285 

Bouvardia 286 



PAGE 

Buddleia 287 

Buxus 289 

Caladium 291 

Calceolaria 291 

Calendulas 292 

Callas 294 

Calliopsis 295 

Campanula 296 

Cannas 297 

Carnations 301 

Celastrus 309 

Celosia 310 

Centaurea 311 

Cerastium 313 

Cerasus 314 

Cercis 314 

Cheiranthus 314 

Chorizema 315 

Chrysanthemums 317 

Cibotium 325 

Cinerarias 325 

Clarkia 327 

Clematis 327 



PAGE 

Cobsea 328 

Cooos 328 

Coleus 329 

Coreopsis ' 331 

Cornus 331 

Cosmos 332 

Crataegus 332 

Crocus 332 

Crotons 333 

Cuphsea 336 

Cycas 336 

Cyclamen 337 

Cydoma 343 

Cyperus 344 

Cytisus 345 

Dahlias 345 

Delphinium 347 

Deutzia 350 

Dianthus 351 

Dicentra 352 

Dictamnus 353 

Didiscus 353 

Diervilla 353 

Digitalis 355 

Dimorphotheca 355 

Dracaena 355 

Echeveria 356 

Epiphyllum 357 

Erica 357 

Eschscholtzia 360 

Euonymus 360 

Eupatorium 362 

Euphorbia 357 

Everlastings 363 

Ferns 364 

Ficus 369 

Forsythia 370 

Freesias 371 

Fuchsia 374 

Funkia 375 

Gaillardia 376 

Gardenia 376 

Geraniums 377 

Geum 381 

Gladiolus 382 

Gloxinia 387 

Gomphrena 388 

Grevillea ,388 

Gypsophila 389 

Hedera 390 

Heleniiun 391 

Helianthemum 392 

Helianthus 392 

HeUopsis 393 

Heliohrysum 394 

Heliotropium 394 

Hemerocallis 395 

Heuchera 396 

Hibiscus 397 

Hunnemannia 398 

Hyacinths 398 

Hydrangeas 402 



CONTENTS— Con/inuerf 

PAGE 

Iberis 408 

Ilex 409 

Impatiens 409 

Ipomoea 410 

Iris 410 

Juniperus 413 

Kalmia 414 

Kentia 415 

Kerria 416 

Lantana 417 

Larkspur 417 

Latania 418 

Latljyrus 418 

Lavendula 419 

LiUes 419 

LUy of the Valley 426 

LobeUa 427 

Lonicera 428 

Lupinus 429 

Lychnis 430 

Lycium 430 



Marguerites 431 

Matricaria 433 

Maurandia 433 

Mertensia 434 

Mesembryanthemum. . . 434 

Metrosideros 434 

Mimosa 435 

Mimulus 435 

Monarda 435 

Montbretia 436 

Musoaria 436 

Myosotis 437 

Narcissus 437 

Nemesia 445 

Nepeta 446 

Nierembergia 446 

Nigella 447 

Nymphaeas and Nelum- 
biums 448 

Orchids 448 

Ornamental Grasses. . . . 450 
Otaheite Orange 453 

Palms 453 

Pandanus 455 

Pansies 456 

Papaver 460 

Pelargonium ,. 462 

Pebnies 463 

Pentstemon 466 

Perilla: 466 

Petunias. ., 466 

Philadelphus 470 

Phlox 471 

Phoenix 474 

Physalis 476 

Physostegia 476 

Picea 476 

Pinus 478 



PAGE 

Platycodon 478 

Poinaettias 479 

Primula 482 

Privet 486 

Prunus 486 

Pueraria .487 

Pyrethrum 487 

Pyrus .489 

'Ranunculus 490 

Reseda 490 

Rhodanthe 492 

Rhododendrons 492 

Rhus 494 

Ribes 495 

Ricinus 495 

Robinia 495 

Roses 496 

Rudbeckia 514 

Salix 514 

Salpiglossls 515 

Salvia 515 

Sambucus 517 

Santolina 517 

Scabiosa 518 

Schizanthus 518 

Sedum 519 

Senecio 520 

Shasta Daisy 520 

Sorbaria 522 

Solanum 522 

Spiraea 523 

Statice, 525 

Stevia '.'. 526 

Stocks 527 

Stokesia 529 

Swainsona 529 

Sweet Peas 530 

Symphoricarpos 535 

Syringa 536 

Tagetes 539 

Tamarix 539 

Thalictrum 541 

Thunbergia 541 

Thuya 541 

Torenia 541 

Tradesoantia 542 

Tritoma 542 

Tuberose 543 

Tulips 543 

Valeriana 546, 

Verbena 546 

Veronica 547 

Viburnum 547 

Vinca 547 

Viola 550 

Violets 550 

Wistaria 553 

Xeranthemum 553 

Yucca 554 

Zinnia 554 



For complete list and index of illustrations (288 in number) 

see page 555. i, 



PREFACE 

The purpose of this book is to assist the retail grower in con- 
ducting his business along uptodate, modern methods. It is not 
intended to replace, or even improve on, the many valuable works 
we already have treating on horticultural matters in general, or 
such as deal with specialties in their respective lines. 

There are today thousands of florists, located mostly in the 
smaUer cities and towns and depending on a local trade, who no 
longer confine their activities within the walls of their greenhouses, 
but have already branched out into the so-called side lines or are 
about to do so, and in the majority of cases they soon learn to ap- 
preciate the great field and future there is in store for them in the 
handling of shrubs, evergreens and other hardy stock, fertihzers, 
seeds, and landscape problems of aU kinds. 

To build up a retail establishment, starting with a rather 
limited knowledge of how to grow greenhouse stock and not enough 
money to pay for twenty-five hotbed sash, means many years of 
hard work; as many more are needed to acquire and build up thfe 
above-mentioned side lines, particularly when one has Httle trust- 
worthy advice to assist him in getting started on the right road. 

I went through all this, and while I have been in the business for 
over forty years without interruption, I can honestly say that had 
there been within my reach a "counselor and guide," such as this 
book is designed to be, it would have been an easier matter for me 
to navigate, and would have meant the saving of a lot of money 
spent in finding out things, not to mention the saving of valuable 
time taken up in experimenting. 

These facts and the many inquiries I have answered from 
readers of The Florists Exchange during the past fourteen years, while 
conducting the "Week's Work" Department (without, if I may say 
so, missing a single issue), have prompted me to undertake writing 
this book in the hope that it may benefit, not only beginners, but 
also those who, though established, are looking for suggestions re- 
garding the buflding and maintenance of an uptodate business, who 
are looking for more trade, and who are anxious to grow, branch out 
and prosper. 

Acknowledgement is made to friends who have supplied some 
of the illustrations, and to Mr. E; L. D. Seymour for suggestions 
and assistance in connection with the arrangement of the material 
and the entire editorial preparation of the book. 

Fritz Bahh. 
Highland Park, 111. 
August, 1922. 









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PART ONE 



CHAPTER I 



THE RETAIL GROWER AND HIS BUSINESS 



THE RETAIL GROWER OF TODAY 

WHETHER you are aware of it or not, it is nevertheless a 
fact that the retail grower is the most independent of all 
who are engaged in such businesses as those of florists, 
seedsmen, nurserymen, landscape gardeners, and other members of the 
allied industries. To quite an extent he has to have a general knowl- 
edge of all these different branches and can make profitable side 
lines out of them. 

As retail growers I class all those florists who are located around 
the larger cities or in their suburbs, in the smaller cities and through- 
out the country towns, and who grow a part of their requirements 
for retail sale to a local trade. Anyone so located experiences 
but few of the troubles the wholesale grower comes up against in 
periods of a glutted market; but few of the crop faflure difficulties 
of the specialist, or the waste and high (overhead) running expenses 
the retailer in the large city is subjected to; but few of the trials of 
the man who has only a smaU store to do business in, who has to 
purchase every bit of the greens and smaU ferns he uses, and who 
has to quickly dispose of the flowering plants he handles, so they 
will not die on his hands. 

The retail grower with greenhouses, frames, proper storage 
facilities and a few acres of land, has a chance to run his affairs 
most economicaUy. He is not confined to just one line, or affected 



18 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 1. — A Retail Grower's Establishment of Yesterday. The store of 
Patten & Co., Lowell, Mass., as it looked between 1876 and 1887. This and the 
photo below were lent by G. Thommen, Somerville, Mass., who worked for this 
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Fig. 2. — ^An Oldtime Range of Glass. The Patten greenhouses started in,, 
1870, grew a general collection of stock for retail trade, especially bedding plantsj 
and a large coUectipn of Azaleas and Camellias. A Rose house (one of the fewf 
then in New England) and the two Hitchings "saddleback" hard coal boilers 
were interesting features 



THE RETAIL GROWER OF TODAY 19 

much by so-called dull or hard times. It is for these reasons that he 
is, indeed, most independent. 

There are exceptions, of course, but, for that matter, most men in 
business (especially those in the large cities) don't always enjoy their 
occupations. The monotony of a daily grind is the cause of it. 
They are more like machines than anything else, and each year they 
value more highly as their most enjoyable and healthy recreation, 
gardening in its varied branches— the very thing that makes up 
the daily life of the retail grower. To my mind, those florists who 
cannot appreciate this fact, who cannot enjoy to the fullest extent 
their occupation, and who cannot become better men because of it, 
will hardly ever find a fair compensation for their work in the 
money they get out of the business. 

There have been and are men who have become rich in the 
florist business, and there wiU be more in the future, but the great 
majority of successful men are only comfortably fixed, and it is 
that class which enjoys work and play in moderation, that lives 
the longest. The man who can acquire that habit is indeed among 
the richest and doesn't have to live one hundred years in order to 
have hved a long and useful life. 



CHANGES FROM YESTERDAY 

Those who can remember forty years and more back have no 
trouble in recaUing the retail grower or florist of the smaller towns. 
In most cases it was just a matter of existing. There was good stock 
grown, but for so little money that there was httle chance of profit 
or hope of settling bills once a month. The average florist and 
the gardener were on a level with the coachman, and even the 
retailer in the larger cities had trouble when rent day came 
around. 

All this is changed. The business of the florist has become a 
regular business. It has evolved with other lines. In New York, 
Chicago or San Fraijcisco on the streets where rents are highest 
you are sure to find the flower shop. Similarly on the main street 
of the smaU town you notice the attractive window of the local 
florist. He is one of the leading business men of the town; he has 
a nice home; he takes an interest in politics and the affairs of the 
community; he belongs to the Booster's Club; he supports the good 
roads movement, and, in fact, anything that stands for progress. 
And if he happens to be a man just starting into business no matter 
on how smaU a scale, it won't be long before he becomes prominent, 
for he cannot very well read the trade papers, join a florists club, or 
the S. A. F., and mingle with progressive men without becoming one 
of them himself. 



20 



FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




CHANGES FROM YESTERDAY 21 

It Tised to be that the man with one, two or three greenhouses 
would grow everything he retailed — and the greenhouses as well as 
the stock looked the part. He would depend on what he grew him- 
self, and his customers had to make the best of it. When the first 
few short-stemmed Marechal Neil Roses, Camellias, or Rouvardias 
were cut, that was all there was to it until more opened. 

Today in many of the most successful and profitable retail 
grower establishments what is grown at home constitutes only the 
smallest part of that which is sold. The owner realizes that he cannot 
compete with the Rose or Carnation specialist; he cannot grow as 
fine Crotons or Cyclamens as they do in Philadelphia or elsewhere; 
he cannot produce on a small scale specimen Cincinnati Regonias, 
Ericas, palms, orchids and a lot of other items; so he purchases all 
these ready for the counter. He does as much business around 
Christmas as, a few years ago, he did all through the year. 

Rut, on the other hand, he figures out that each year it is 
more essential to have on the benches paying crops of the things 
he cannot purchase as easily as he can grow them. Rench space is 
worth more than ever, and there is no room now for Cacti, woody 
Heliotropes or out of date Regonias kept merely in order to have 
something on the benches. He is no longer content to be confined 
within greenhouse walls, but gets outdoors and finds a most 
profitable field in landscape work, in growing on hardy stock, etc. 
He has no more dull seasons, for there is something doing every day. 
And there results an ever higher standard of living for himself and 
those who work for him, as he keeps on looking for more business, 
accomplishes more each day, and pays living wages. He doesn't 
wait for things to come his way, but, with advertising, he goes after 
them. He is a "live wire" if there ever was one. 



THE OUTLOOK FOR THE FUTURE 

As we look back, it does seem wonderful — all that has been 
accomplished, and the prosperous times that the florists have known 
in spite of the World War. To some it even may appear as if 
we had reached the high water mark, but this is not so. As we go 
on — and we will go on — more flowers than ever will be needed. 
They are no longer considered a luxury, but are viewed as a neces- 
sity; it isn't only the rich who buy them. Everybody does. With 
each new home is created a new demand. As more homes, even if 
only of moderate size, are built in the country, a greater and greater 
demand is created for flowers, trees, shrubs and perennials with 
which to beautify their grounds. 

The florist didn't begin to prosper until the country at large 
prospered. He couldn't have done it by himself. You cannot sell 
flowers where there isn't money for bread, no matter how you 



FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. I.^Retail Gbowing As It Used To Be. This picture, taken in 1908, and 
lent by Charles Zeller & Son of Brooklyn, N. Y., shows an establishment thoroughly 
up to the average for its day and generation. How far we have progressed in less 
than a score of years is shown by the views of other modern places reproduced 

throughout this book 



advertise or organize. But the United States leads the world in 
prosperity, and will continue to lead. It has the people and the 
resources to do it with. You may point to cases of extravagance— 
and there is extravagance — -but that exists all over the world, even 
in many parts of starving Europe. It always has existed, and always 
will. Riding in an automobile would a few years ago have been 
considered extravagant; so would have been the modern lunchroom 
with marble floor, walls and counters, or the tiled bathroom. As 
we go on, people demand better things, and so it should be. The 
worker today buys flowers, he fixes up his little front yard, he 
plants shrubs and perennials, he has porch boxes. The fact that he 
is getting better wages than ever makes him spend more than ever. 
We are going on, going forward. Some, of course, will misuse 
what they are being blessed with, but more money than ever before 
will be spent on flowers for all occasions, and for the beautifying of 
the home grounds. 

I am convinced that the future of the florist business rests 
entirely in our own hands. In no other part of the world is there a 
better chance to develop this industry than here, or a better market. 
At present it is a matter of producing to supply the demand; and 
by means of cooperative work through the S. A. F. and the F. T. D., 
and by means of continuous advertising to educate the public, each , 
year will be made a better one than that which preceded it. 



THE OUTT.OOK FOR THE FUTURE 23 

The money is there. People are spending it and paying more for 
service than ever, but as yet only a small part of the population 
"Say it with Flowers." The more they hear and see of them, the 
more they will use them. Even should all of these predictions fail, 
most of us in business today know that good florists' stock never 
sold at a higher price than at present, and that this is no time to 
retrench, but a time to go on, to build, to expand, to produce still 
better stock, to advertise, to give better and still more courteous 
service. Come what may, flowers wiU always be used, and there 
is absolutely nothing to fear for those who attend to their business 
and "watch their step." 

STARTING INTO BUSINESS 

The great majority of those who are successful retail growers 
today, started with little or no capital. That, of course, doesn't say 
anything about the many who started and fafled. Most of them 
are forgotten. 

Under the existing conditions, the man who wants to start and 
has a capital of say $10,000 will be looking around for more capital 
by the time he has a suitable lot, a little store and a couple of green- 
houses. Yet, if he has a knowledge of the business, and is a business 
man he has, of course, a great advantage over the one who hasn't 
that amount of money to begin with. 

The first requirement, however, in either case is a knowledge of 
the business — not in aU its branches, but in the particular one he 
wants to enter, and for which he sees an opening. GeneraUy speak- 
ing, a man with $10,000 capital should put not over one-half of 
that amount into buildings, and reserve the other half for working 
capital. To put in every cent and borrow funds to work with is 
dangerous, particularly with those so located that they can buy from 
the wholesale market the cut flowers they need, or from the wholesale 
grower the plants they require. A lack of working capital has made 
many a man close up. When once established for a year or two, 
things are different. If you have kept a correct record you can find out 
at a glance the amount of business done, which will give the best pos- 
sible idea of what could be done. Misusing credit, however, is 
skating on thin ice. 

There is this advantage about starting in as a retajl grower: 
the growing end of the concern is the last to be considered. The 
first and main problem is a suitable place in which to do business. 
There is plenty of stock in the country that you can buy ready for 
the counter and seU at a good profit, but to grow, and especially to 
grow cut flowers, requires modern houses. You can successfully 
grow bedding stock in a sash house, but in such a building Roses or 
Carnations would prove a failure. Starting in on a small scale, a 
little store — no matter how simply constructed, a small show house 



24 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

—even if only 20x20 ft. or 25 ft. in size, and a 12-ft. wide plant 
house, can be made the foundation to build upon. There are today 
any nupiber of towns where there is an opening for the right man. 
As we increase in population, so will the opportunities for more such 
openings increase. 

You may come to a small city or town and admire the layout 
of the modern retail grower's establishment, but hardly ever will 
you find such a place where the owner didn't start with very Hmited 
means, adding and improving as he went along, until he got where 
he is today. That is the natural way. There are cases, of course, 
where two or more men put in $10,000, $20,000, or more, started 
out with an uptodate establishment and succeeded, but these are 
the exceptions. 

Were I to offer any suggestions to those with capital starting 
into business, here they are: Begin with a knowledge of the business; 
select a proper location, one where there will be room for expansion, 
yet near enough to the town and on a main road ; invest only about 
one-half of the capital on hand to begin with, and pay more attention 
to an attractive front, a store, and a show house than all else. As 
you go on, you will soon find out where there would be an advantage 
in erecting a house for a particular crop or in growing on certain 
stock that you use but cannot always buy satisfactorily from others. 
But from the very start, put on a good front, buy according to your 
requirements, pay your bills as you go along, live within your income, 
advertise, and keep it up. 

Starting Without Capital 

The man who really wants to start in business for himself is 
going to do it whether he has money to do it with or not. He doesn't 
need pointers from others on how to do it — for there are none they 
could give him. If you were to hear their stories from fifty men 
who started with little or nothing and succeeded, there wouldn't be 
two cases aUke. It isn't always the man who knows most or is the 
best florist who succeeds. In fact, I am convined that th6re are right 
now more of such men working for others than are in business for 
themselves. There are cases where the owner of a notion or drug 
store started to handle cut flowers in one corner of the store and 
later took on flowering plants; then he hired someone to make up floral 
designs, and finally went into growing on stock and devoted his 
whole time to it with great success. Then we know of those who 
never grew anything but Lettuce and Cucumbers under glass, but 
who changed to flowers and made it pay; also the man who never 
handled a Rose, but went into Rose growing and succeeded. 

Any man who wants to succeed as a retail grower has to be not 
only a florist, but also a business man. He not only has to love 
flowers and be able to grow them, but he also has to know how to buy 



STARTING INTO BUSINESS 



25 



and sell to advantage, how to handle his patrons and satisfy them; 
he must be a good mixer, liberal minded, always informed as to his 
assets and liabilities and ready to act accordingly. He must be con- 
servative, yet optimistic. Lacking some of these traits makes 
some fail, while others succeed in spite of the lack. But the man who 
is good at business, has the advantage. Those who have it in mind 
to start without capital may claim that to do so twenty or thirty 
years ago was an easy matter, but that it cannot be done today. But 
this is wrong. There are greater opportunities today by far, than 
there were in former times. Right now, there are men all over the 
country, perhaps struggling along, not knowing where the money 
for the next ton of coal is coming from; men who have to do their 
own delivering, who in a few years will be among the successful men 
of their day. There is a crop of just such men among the leaders 
of today ; and other crops, and much larger ones, will follow as the 
years pass by. 

A man without any capital to speak of should know his business, 
should be able bodied, willing to work eighteen hours every day, if 
necessary, and be determined to succeed. It is proper that I should 
present in this chapter my idea of at least one way in which a man 




Fig. 5. — ^A Flower Shop Interior. A good example of a neat, inviting flower 

shop in Peoria, III. The retail grower who is equipped in similar manner as well 

as with adequate, uptodate greenhouses is fortunate indeed 



26 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

might start and succeed. It is but one of a hundred other, perhaps 
better ways, yet the reading of these notes may lead someone to 
think of a better way, and thereby help him. 

To start today in the florist business a man wants to locate 
where things are humming, where they do things. I don't know of 
a better section than the great Middle West. That is not to say, 
however that similar opportunities are not to be found m the East, 
and South, or along the Western Coast. The smaller inland towns 
are good places to live in, but it is the big cities that are making 
the most headway. Around almost any of these cities, often for 
a distance of thirty miles or more, we find the suburban sections 
where are located the homes of those doing business in the cities. 
It is in these suburbs that there is, to my mind, the best field today 
for the retail grower to start into business. 

In localities where there are already one or two florists, there is 
room for another, and wherever as yet there is none, conditions are even 
better. To hunt up such a place is the first thing, and if it is done 
in early Spring and you mean business, you won't have any trouble 
in getting all the work you can attend to putting people's home 
grounds in order. If you have no money, don't say anything about 
it to the parties you work for, who are in need of shrubs and peren- 
nials, but do your work well and stick to it. Make arrangements 
to take care of a place for so much a month during Summer. Plan 
to work ten or twelve hours every day. 

WoBKiNG Up a Stock 

If you get a few dollars, buy seeds of biennials and perennials 
and sow them in a frame outdoors on a piece of land you have rented 
for a year. You won't need sashes till Fall and by that time you 
will have a nice lot of Pansies, Bellis, Myosotis, Larkspur, Canter- 
bury Bells, Foxgloves, Hollyhocks, Gaillardias, Columbines, Core- 
opsis, Shasta Daisies, Pyrethrums, Achillea, Gypsophila, Sweet 
Williams, Border Pinks, Heliopsis, Rudbeckia and others. Seed of 
most of these sown in early April will give you salable stock that 
Fall and the following Spring. Of course, the Pansies, Bellis and 
Myosotis you sow 'ater. Thirty-five dollars invested in seed will 
give you thousands of plants worth hundreds of dollars a year later 
on. In the Fall, invest in a few sashes — the Foxgloves and Canter- 
bury Bells will need them and some of the others are better off 
covered. Work hard that first Summer and please everybody, and 
no doubt you will have charge of most of the places during the fol- 
lowing Winter. If not, work at anything that comes along, it doesn't 
make any difference what. By the following Spring you have not 
only your labor for sale, but stock, too. Everybody wants hardy 
stock, and you will want someone to help you do the work in Spring. 



STARTING INTO BUSINESS 27 

There are the lawns to get in order, fertUizer and grass seed to sell, 
and maybe, a few shrubs. Plant out more seed and purchase a few 
good Phlox, Iris and Peonies, if you didn't do so the Fall before. 
Don't spend a cent on yourself unnecessarily, but put every nickel 
into more sashes and stock. Rent more land, too; maybe a better 
piece. 

How about approaching someone you work for in regard to mak- 
ing a loan to enable you to put up a little greenhouse ? Why not ? 
If you can't do it, keep on hammering harder than ever, and put in 
another Winter the same way as the first. By the second Spring 
you are in better shape than ever. Work eight hours a day for other 
people and ten for yourself. You will have annuals and perennials 
for sale and flowers to cut all Summer. If you have too many peren- 
nials foryour retail trade, advertise and sell wholesale. By the third 
Fall, I bet you will have a little greenhouse and a square show room 
with a display cooler, and will be equipped to furnish anything in 
floral designs. 

That not only sounds well, but, if you are of the right stuff, you 
can do it. If you are not foolish enough to try to undersell the 
fellow who is already established, you will succeed and grow with 
the town you live in. Any man with open eyes, who has for years 
worked in and about a greenhouse, will have no trouble in doing 
outdoor work on a private place. He also wiU have no difficulty 
in finding out what he doesn't know about hardy stock. There 
isn't a home ground today, no matter how well laid out or kept, where 
there isn't room for changes to be made. Besides all that, new homes 
are being built and the wideawake man will land the work on some of 
them, at least. 

Those who started twenty-five or thirty years ago didn't have 
anywhere near the opportunities that are offered today. The town 
without a florist or landscape gardener gets along nicely without 
either of them, but the more florists and landscape gardeners are 
seen in a section, the more flowers are used, and the more work there 
is for both — and the home grounds show it. Where there isn't a 
demand for flowers, create one; where people are in the habit of 
buying cheap flowers, educate them to want better ones. No one 
florist can please aU the people of a town, and no matter how many 
are there doing business, there is always room for the new fellow. 
It is up to him whether or not he is going to stay. 

If you stick in the Rose or Carnation section of a large concern, 
there is but little chance of ever starting into business for yourself. 
This is not to say that maybe, with a good salary you are not as 
well off there; but not all of us are contented with that. Even a 
man without capital can start in business for himself; his labor is 
his capital and he simply has to work, and keep working, and then 




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STARTING INTO BUSINESS 29 

work some more at anything to get some money, and so get on his 
feet. It can be done and is being done every day. Eight hours is 
enough if you get paid for eight hours, but the man who starts in 
business for himself, knows no hours — he cannot if he wants to succeed. 
He knows no discouragement and keeps on looking ahead. Ask 
any man who is successful today and who started with nothing, if 
this isn't so. 

THE WISDOM OF BRANCHING OUT 

With a proper organization there is no limit for the retail 
grower in branching out; that is, for him who wants to branch out. 
There are in the business today men who don't confine themselves 
to the greenhouse and the store, but who do landscape work, road 
building, have a nursery, do tree surgery and spray trees, carry a 
complete line of garden furniture, sell phonographs, birds and gold- 
fish, and always have a large display of fancy baskets and jar- 
dinieres. The farther a town is located from a large city the more 
all these side lines pay. There are cases where a local florist has 
worked up a trade in flower, garden and field seeds and fertilizers, 
and made it more profitable than anything else he does. Lawn 
grass seed is another profitable line. Who in a town can carry all 
these items better than the florist? They, and everything that is 
used in connection with flowers or the home grounds, aU go hand 
in hand with his business. 

However, I don't think it best for a man who isn't well estab- 
lished, to go into too many things. Let him stick to just one or two 
lines to start with, and those the best lines. What they are also 
difl'ers in almost every locality. The more lines you get into the 
better the organization must he, and the more system is required 
to make a success of it. One man can for awhile do it all ; you can 
get started and see to quite a lot, but as you grow and branch out, 
you need help, and there is always one man or woman more fit to 
do a certain thing than another. 

There are today in the country firms that are in the seed busi- 
ness and carry everything in that line, as weU as tools, bulbs, etc., 
and that include, besides, large greenhouse establishments, seUing 
at both wholesale and retail, and a well-stocked extensive nursery 
in addition. The florist in the smaller cities and towns can do the 
same thing, on a smaUer scale. There is no good reason why he 
cannot, but to start out with all of those lines, is very apt to result 
in failure, unless there is an unlimited amount of capital available. 
A far better way is to start slowly and grow into it. I know of no 
other line of business conducted in a town in which there is a greater 
or better chance to branch out than in that of the retaU grower, but 
very few men have as yet taken advantage of the fact. They are 
either too busy attending to the growing and sefling of plants and 



30 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

flowers out of the greenhouses and trying to do most of the work 
themselves, or else they don't care to branch out farther. 

A FEW POINTERS FOR THE BEGINNER 

First of all, find out what is in most demand in the locality in 
which you want to do business. Grow or have for sale that for which 
there is already a demand. Don't try to make people buy what you 
think is best for them. Making a show counts for more than any- 
thing else. The retail florist's business is a show business in every 
sense of the word, so if you start with suflicient capital, have the 
show house and the store in mind before anything else. No matter 
where you are located there will be a way to purchase palms, ferns 
and other decorative stock with which to make a proper display. 
With such surroundings you will have the confidence of your cus- 
tomers, or soon obtain it. They will feel satisfied that you are 
capable of attending to their orders, and it will be as easy again to 
take orders for outdoor stock and landscape work. 

No matter how hot the Summer, always keep the display cooler 
full of stock, and vases and baskets filled with garden flowers. What 
of it, if you do have to throw some of them away ? Keep up a show 
every day of the year, and if you are starting out with only limited 
means, again have the show room or store first in mind. If you are 
a florist you know what you can do with a square room with hardly 
anything in it, if you have ferns and a few palms to decorate with. 
Set aside a part of the greenhouse nearest to the entrance and use it 
as a little show house. 

This is the idea: Display to the very best advantage the stock 
for which there is a demand. Always have that in mind. Every- 
body realizes today the necessity of acting on the square, of giving 
people their money's worth, of being courteous, prompt in delivering 
orders, and as particular in filling little orders as large ones. 

From the very start do some advertising. No matter how little 
it is, keep on letting people know about you. Always figure out what 
it is best to buy ready grown, and what it is best for you to grow on. 
The man who has to buy every bit of bedding stock usually doesn't 
make much on it, so the more of it you can grow on yourself, the 
better for you. Usually there are certain things that will do better 
in one place than another, and it is those that one should make a 
specialty of, rather than waste time insisting on growing others 
which cannot be done. The sooner one gets away from the idea of 
growing everything, the better. The same is true with trying to 
make fifty-seven varieties aU do well in one house. If you need one 
hundred pots of Lilies for Easter, you are making a mistake in 
trying to grow them. The cheapest, best and surest way to have 
them for Easter week is to buy them in bud from the specialist. 



POINTERS FOR THE BEGINNER 31 

Always study conditions around you, what people want, what 
there is a demand for, or what you might create a demand for such 
as exists in other locahties. Be ever on the outlook for novelties or 
something out of the ordinary for the show house. There are a lot 
of plants and flowers so old and long forgotten, that they are new to 
most of your customers. 

Keep posted on what is going on in other parts of the country; 
read the trade papers; read the garden magazines; read good horti- 
cultural books; join the local florist club if there is one, or the nearest 
one to you. Join the S. A. F. and the F. T. D. A., and look to the 
large city retailer for the newest ideas in floral art. 

Visit, whenever you can, the large stores and the big greenhouse 
estabUshments of your neighborhood, and profit by their experience. 
If you notice in the ads of the large growers just what varieties 
of Carnations or Roses or Chrysanthemums they offer, you can 
quickly tell which are the best for your commercial purposes. 

Go slowly. "Stop, Look and Listen." Don't overreach. Watch 
your step. Borrowed money never sleeps. Work as many hours 
as necessary, but keep on thinking at the same time. A weak mind 
and a strong back make a good ditch digger, but never a florist. 
Too many men start and get dizzy from doing too well at the be- 
ginning. The man who never experienced any bumps as he went 
along, most hkely will have them coming to him later on. In other 
words, if you don't get them before you are thirty, you'll probably 
get them later. 

If there is any underselling to be done, let the other fellow do it. 
If your competitor won't work with you along cooperative lines, 
don't try to get even with him ; let him alone. Figure on a fair margin 
of profit and keep on making new friends, but keep the old ones, too. 
There is no better time to start to collect what is due you than right 
at the beginning. "Pay and collect as you go," has never yet been 
the cause of a business failure. 

THE VALUE OF ADVERTISING 

Nowadays, unless you advertise, even if you have a superior 
article to offer, people will not find it out, hunt you up, or make a 
path to your door. You would have to have a wonderful lot of 
patience if you were to wait for them to come, for they want to be 
invited; they want a well-paved roadway to drive their machines 
on; they want an attractive entrance to your place of business; they 
want to be greeted with a welcoming smile, treated with courtesy 
and to purchase on a "one-price-to-all, money-cheerfuUy-refunded-if- 
goods-are-not-as-represented" basis. To have the goods is not 
enough; you must have the rest. In order to succeed you have to 
advertise, whether you wholesale or retail, whether you are big or 
small. Make people think and talk about your goods and you will 



32 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

either sell them or keep them. But keep what you have to offer a 
secret, and no one ever will try to find out about it. 

Every successful man advertises one way or another. Why? 
Because the pubUc demands it. The modern magazine is three- 
fourths advertisements. Why? Because the reading public like 
it that way. Many of these ads furnish more interesting reading 
than some of the so-called "reading matter" in the magazines. 

Advertising that lets others know what you have to offer, if 
well written, is always interesting. It belongs to our age. If you 
have what others need, advertise it, fulfill your promises and you will 
grow and prosper. And keep on advertising more and more as 
you go along. 

Take the biggest business houses of the country — they are 
known all over, yet they keep on advertising. They keep their 
names before the public. They put their advertising campaigns in 
the hands of experts in order to make their ads more attractive, 
if possible, than those of their competitors. 

Wouldn't you think a Macy, a Wanamaker, or a Marshall 
Field wouldn't need to advertise ? Yet they do, and the bigger they 
grow, the more they do it. So must the small business man, no 
matter what he has to sell, if he wants to go on and grow. If you 
don't advertise you draw a circle around yourself, and shut yourself 
off from the rest of the world. Advertise and you branch out, you 
find new fields opening up, %id more business is bound to follow. 
"^ Failure in business is hardly ever caused by too much adver- 
tising. Only too often it results from not enough of it. Creating 
new outlets for your goods spells progress, and advertising will help 
do it. You buy a well-known brand of clothes, hats or shoes largely 
because they are well known, and the way they became well known 
was through advertising. According to one of the leading authorities 
on financial matters, eighty-four per cent of the failures in the United:, 
States in 1920 were of concerns that did. not advertise. 

There is no business so small that it is not able to advertise. 
The only time you cannot afford it, is when you have nothing to 
talk, about. The man who says he has all he can do without adver- 
tising, is succeeding in spite of himself and needs a competitor to 
causae him to change his mind and to wake him up. 

Anyone starting out in business should give a part of his time 
to the study of advertising. The larger concerns in his line will 
give him a good example of uptodate methods. Not that it is a 
matter of imitating, but from them he can get ideas and suggesti^s 
as to what will suit his own requirements best. By so doing he will 
at the same time work to keep up an attractive and inviting estab- 
Ushment. This, in turn, will make him take pride in showing what 
he has to offer to the best advantage and in giving real service. 
Advertising puts life into a man's business and into the man himself. 



THE VALUE OF ADVERTISING 



33 



You Needn't Be a Genius to Win Success 

You don't need to be a genius in order to be successful. George 
Washington was not a genius in any one line. Among the group of 
great men of the American Revolution and the fifty-six signers of 
the Declaration of Independence were men of remarkable abilities, 
yet none of them combined to such a degree the characteristics of 
good sense, sincerity of purpose, foresight, consideration for others, 
calmness, and determination that Washington possessed. Such good 
qualities may not be the rule with all human beings, yet it pays to 
cultivate, them. They hardly ever make for great wealth, but 
strongly tend toward moderation in all things, whether work or 
play. They make for a healthy body and mind, for a successful life. 
We need the radical in the world so as to help evolution along, and 
with the reactionary element holding back a little, we find our 
balance. But a nation's greatest asset is those who make moderation 
the keynote in th^r daily lives and practice the Golden Rule. 

If it is true that the world at present is going at an awful pace, 
it is just as certain that, at the same time, we are making for a saner 
tomorrow. Many a man, in order to achieve so-called success and 
leadership, sacrifices all that goes to make up the ideal home life. 
Even a night fireman may be a success in life, if he makes the best 
use of his opportunities, fulfills his duties conscientiously, appreciates 




Fig. 7. — Floral DECoaATioNS for Other Lines. To be progressive and uptodate 
means that you must follow the exsimple of other successfij hnns and let no oppor- 
tunity to boost the use of flowers slip by unheeded. The above display, arranged 
for Music Wefek in Seattle, Wash., is an example of such an opportunity 



34 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

his home and those in it, and is respected by those with whom he 
comes in contact. 

It is the easiest thing in the world for a florist to acquire the 
spending habit from some of his patrons or succumb to the tempta- 
tion to buy doubtful stocks when he could invest his profits to good 
advantage in his own business — from which they came. To be suc- 
cessful in business and make money is one thing; to live a useful 
life and spend your money to best advantage is quite another. 
There is many a nervous breakdown that isn't caused by overwork. 
Yet it is well to get into the habit of forgetting all about your busi- 
ness when you reach home, and into the "smiling face" habit. This 
acts like sunshine upon those with whom you come in contact. 

You rise not by pulling others down, but rather as the result 
of helping others up. You cannot gain anything by envying those 
with lots of money, but you profit much by imitating those blessed 
with Httle, but who make the best use of it. The real optimist is he 
who lives and works to make himself optimistic. As to troubles, 
"today" is the "tomorrow" you worried about yesterday — but you 
have lived through it. 

A FEW WORDS ABOUT SUCCESS 

If I depart here for a moment from the usual course one is sup- 
posed to pursue in writing a book of this kind, it is because I wouldn't 
consider my work complete without touching on this subject. 

To be successful in whatever we undertake is what we are after. 
But all too often a man will think of nothing else under that name 
but the making of money. So much in Ufe is valued in terms of 
dollars and cents, that to show a way to get hold of the dollars, and 
if possible, to get them easily, is frequently regarded as all important. 
While I sincerely hope that the contents of this book may help a 
good many to do that very thing, I feel as if I ought to present also 
my view on the deeper meaning of the word "Success," the practice 
of which on my part has helped me to a better understanding of Ufe 
and a keener appreciation of the good and enjoyment there is in it. 

It is the easiest thing in the world to dish out advice. Quite 
frequently those who are most liberal with it heed but little of it 
themselves, although oftentimes they are most in need of it. They 
are like the fellow who knows all about potting; who knows and 
can tell you just how to do it, but who, in the potting shed, accom- 
plishes less than any of the others who don't say much, but keep on 
potting. 

The offering of suggestions on how to be, or become, successful 
m hfe (which includes business) might be taken the same way. 
Yet as we go on through hfe, the ups and downs and changing en- 
vironments are bound to make impressions on us, shape our thoughts 
and give rise to opinions, which sometimes may be of use to others. 



A FEW WORDS ABOUT SUCCESS 35 

It is true that our own experiences, trials and hardships can be 
of but little use to the young man or woman starting out in life. In 
fact, I think there are but few cases wherein the son ever profited 
by what his father went through. On the other hand, many a so- 
called self-made man makes the mistake of trying to shield his boy 
from the very knocks and bumps that helped to make a man out 
of him. And the boy needs those knocks and bumps so badly! 
Only those who actually have had them can truly appreciate so- 
called success later on, while those who, in youth, always traveled 
on a smooth road, are hardly ever capable of getting the most out 
of Ufe, no matter how long they live. Besides, in the case of reverses 
or a cloudy sky, they have a hard time retrenching or facing the 
conditions. 

Every Man's Responsibilities 

I haven't the young man or woman in mind just now, but 
rather those who either are starting into business, or are in it and 
might be benefited by what, to my way of thinking, makes toward 
a successful life. None of us, if we travel long enough, can escape 
moments when we ask ourselves the same question that philosopher 
Kant asked about life and our struggles over one hundred and fifty 
years ago: "What is it really all about?" But we usually get over 
that, and those with healthy minds will find, as man in all ages has 
found, that there is a lot to be thankful for, and that there are 
great things to be done. While we really don't know the first thing 
about how it all came about, we become conscious of duties we have 
to perform, involving ourselves and others. We recognize our 
responsibilities — and each one, if at all a useful member of society, 
has them. Whether we are rich or poor, there is work to do and a 
lot of it; not only in connection with our own personal affairs, but 
for others. These things make life worth while, and each of us can 
help best by doing just a little to make it pleasant for those about 
us, and who come within the circle of our reach. 

As florists, we are very apt to judge a man's success by the 
amount of glass he possesses. In reality there is much more to it. 
To build up a large establishment, acquire wealth and reach the 
head of a large business are all accomplishments to be proud of, 
but the man with only a small establishment may, for all that, be 
every bit as successful, if not more so. It all depends on what use 
he makes of life itself and whatever he may be blessed with. 

The most foolish thing is to find fault with the times and the 
way things are going. You can do your share in trying to solve the 
great problems confronting humanity — and there are and always 
have been some mighty serious ones. Conditions exist today for 
which there is no good reason. They wouldn't exist if we but knew 
enough, had advanced far enough and would practice more consci- 
entiously the poHcy of STOP, LOOK AND LISTEN. 



36 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

We cannot change the times in which we live, but a great deal 
of good will come out of trying to adjust ourselves to them and to 
do the best we can. 

In order to be successful in life, you must make the best pos- 
sible use of opportunities as they present themselves. Work, play 
and have consideration for others. 

Brain Work Plus Hand Work 

John Ruskin said: "It is only by labor that thought can be 
made healthy, and only by thought that labor can be made happy; 
the two cannot be separated with impnuity." 

In no other line of business has a man a better chance to love 
his work than in the case of the florist. In growing and selling 
flowers the retail grower in particular can directly and indirectly 
cause a whole lot of happiness. The man with a neat establishment 
who depends on a local trade is indeed "King Bee." He may imagine 
he has worries, but they are nothing compared with those of men in 
other lines of business, who, due to the nature of their work, actually 
hate it. Many of them have no chance to get the least bit of pleasure 
out of their daily toil. They may even acquire a fortune and yet 
not get anywhere near out of life what the florist in moderate cir- 
cumstances is able to, day by day. That, after all counts for most— 
to make of each day the best you can, to enjoy your work, to take an 
interest in your business and all that is connected with it. Act on 
the square in your town and government, have things cheerful at 
home, be a companion to your boy or girl, read good books and 
help others. What more can any one do? And where is the florist 
who cannot practice these things? 

If you do practice them, you will be truly successful. 





-"^^^i^ 



CHAPTER II 



INDOORS AND OUTDOORS ALL THE 
YEAR 'ROUND 



Things, Both Old and New, to be Done and Thought of by the Busy Man 
During Each Month of the Year 

IN no other branch of the florist business are there more things to 
be thought of and more details to be attended to just at the 
right moment, than in that of those who retail the stock they 
grow, who supply a part or all of the demand for hardy stock in the 
city or town in which they are located, and do general gardening 
and landscape work. All of these so-called side lines go hand in 
hand, and each month certain things have to be attended to in 
preparing for the future. 

No matter how much experience we have had or how many 
years we have been in the harness, every, once in a while we find we 
have overlooked something which should have been attended to, 
but wasn't. To help the reader avoid this is the object of this 
chapter. 

These notes by no means cover anywhere near all that is to be 
done and thought of each month. In fact, they only hit some of 
the high spots. But they are guaranteed to keep the average man 
busy and should prove of value to many, especially those who feel 
in need of a little reminding and assistance in order to plan and 
work to the best advantage. 

37 



38 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

JANUARY 

General Cultural Notes 

JANUARY the first finds us in the midst of Winter, when careful 
watering and watching the thermometer play an important 
part in the Carnation, Rose and other houses where plants for cut 
flowers are grown. 

You can never go wrong with an even night temperature of 
50 deg. in the Carnation houses. You may not cut quite as many 
flowers as those who maintain 52 deg. or over, but you are on the 
safe side, for you subject the plants less to chances of weak growth 
and disease. Your Roses according to the varieties, will stand from 
8 to 10 deg. more than the Carnations, but these, too, always do 
best in an even temperature at night. There isn't much danger of 
the temperature running up too high during the day time, but when- 
ever the sun does warm up things, give a crack of air. 

Always examine the soil in the benches before you water. 
The appearance of the surface doesn't prove anything, for a wet 
surface may cover a dry bottom, and a dry surface hide a soil 
soaking wet below. Excess of moisture during dark weather 
breeds trouble, while soil reduced to a dry state by heating pipes 
near the benches is as bad. To my mind, there is nothing in the 
assertion that it is a good thing to let the soil in the benches dry 
out thoroughly every once in a while to keep it sweet. When you 
have perfect drainage and healthy plants growing in the benches, 
you can best encourage their future development by maintaining 
as nearly as possible an even degree of moisture at all times. But 
don't mistake for that a soaking wet condition often caused by a 
lack of drainage. With Roses in particular, the mistake is frequently 
made, according to no less an authority than E. G. Hill, of not 
watering them enough. 

With proper drainage there isn't much danger of oVerwatering 
a bench holding 5 in. of soil, that is, if you just use a little judg- 
ment. With poor drainage you will have trouble no matter how 
little you water. 

Do your watering in the forenoon, so as to avoid wet foliage 
overnight. The giganteum Lilies need a 60-deg. house from the 
time they are making growth, and should have a sunny bench. 
The formosums can get along nicely in a 50-deg. house, and those 
planted during October should have made from 6 to 10 in. of growth. 
Should you want them before Easter, let them have more heat. 

The Sweet Peas may drop some of their first buds. Dark, cloudy 
weather often has this effect on them. Fifty degrees is enough for 
them. The Violets have to be watched; keep them clean and the 



THINGS TO BE DONE IN JANUARY 39 

soil between them cultivated. A night temperature of 45 deg. will 
suit them best and is enough for Snapdragons during this month. 
The same with Calendulas, Mignonette, Pansies, Forget-me-nots, 
Polyanthus Primulas, Canterbury Bells and Wallflowers. The small 
flowering Bouvardias can stand 55 deg.. Marguerites, 50 deg., and 
Lupines, 48 deg. 

Roses for Easter 

While a great deal depends upon just what date Easter faUs on, 
you can never make a mistake by getting the Ramblers intended 
for that day under way early. By that I mean let the plants, whether 
grown on in pots or field plants potted up in late Fall, come along 
in a house of 45-deg. or a little over. This wUl result not so much in 
a marked growth of the young breaks, as in the roots getting active, 
which will mean later on that the plants wiU respond more freely 
when subjected to more heat and more moisture. Never aUow the 
soil in the pots to become dry, even while the plants are in a dormant 
state in a cold house. 

You can, if necessary, give the plants during the last few weeks 
before Easter, a 70-deg. or 80-deg. house, if they have a 45-deg. 
house during January and have been getting ready to start since 
the end of December. But you cannot have them in a high tem- 
perature in February and then let them have a 50-deg. house three 
weeks before Easter in order to hold them back. 

Various Easter Stocks 

Hydrangeas, Bougainvilleas, Genistas, Rhododendrons, Deut- 
zias, Azaleas, Ericas, Kalmias — aU of these want not more than 
45 deg. during January. Keep them cool, with the exception, 
perhaps, of the Hydrangeas, which during the latter part of the 
month might be given a few degrees more. With Hydrangeas it 
is always best to get them under way early ; you will have no trouble 
in holding them back a little later on, but it is a mean job to be 
obliged to force them hard a few days before Easter and have to 
offer spft, sickly colored stock, which usually means trouble before 
you get through with it. 

Bedding Stock 

The 2-in. or 23/^-in. Geraniums most likely will need a shift, 
and every available cutting, if of fair size, should be placed in the 
propagating bench. Don't delay ordering, if you are short on stock; 
there is nothing to be gained by it. If there are stock plants of 
Salvias, Hehotrope, Ageratum, double Lobeha, Fuchsias and others 
still under the benches where they were placed for the lack of space, 
get them up now. Let them have sun and light in order that they 
may produce healthy cuttings. 



40 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 8. — A Plant House in Winter. It isn't the good fortune of every retail 
grower to possess a beautiful house like this in which to grow on bedding stock during 
the Winter months. Notice the spacious walks; plenty of room here for a row of 
Vincas on either side. Note, too, the hot water return pipes under the benches, 
which space, especially with those whose room is limited, can be used for seed flats 
and for starting Gannas, tuberous-rooted Begonias, Caladiums and other stock 



Miscellaneous Materials 

PoiNSETTiAS and Bouvardia Stock Plants. — The cut-down 
Poinsettias and Bouvardia Humboldtii, require a dry place under- 
neath some bench. The Poinsettias can remain there until the 
following April. Carrying over the Bouvardia Humboldtii for the 
second year is an easy matter, and pays. 

Bulb Stock.— Always have a sufficient number of flats of 
Narcissi, TuHps and Miniature Hyacinths brought in from the 
outside, ready to be placed in heat whenever wanted for forcing. 
By the end of the month Golden Spur and double Von Sion Nar- 
cissi can be had in flower from flats subjected to heat below a bench 
from the first of the month. 

Seeds to Sow.— Vinca rosea and V. alba should be sown at 
once, and during the month you can sow LobeUa, Verbena, the 
bedding Begonias, Thunbergia, Shamrock, Petunias, Maurandias 
and Salvias. Place your order for whatever seeds you will need so 
as to have them on hand when wanted. 



THINGS TO BE DONE IN JANUARY 41 

Gladioli. — Don't overlook the planting of at least a few bulbs 
of Gladiolus. That you have no bench room is no excuse for not 
doing so; for the bulbs can be started in pots later on. Don't over- 
look the Primulinus hybrids, for they are especially good for forcing 
under glass. 

Annuals for Early Spring Flowering. — You can make a 
sowing now of almost any of the annuals we grow under glass and 
have them come into flower from April on up to the middle of May, 
according to the variety. Annual Larkspur, Sweet Peas, Calendulas, 
Gypsophila, Stocks, Lupines, Schizanthus, Poppies, Hunnemannia, 
double Cornflower, Snapdragons, Mignonette and others can either 
be sown where they are to flower, or, which is better, started in 
flats, pricked off into other flats, and finally grown on in a solid 
bed. 

Keep up a nice display in the show house and store. Leftover 
Cyclamens should have a 55-deg. house and Paperwhites and 
Roman Hyacinths in flats should be brought into a coldhouse, 
where they will keep in better shape. 

Have you made a record of the business you did during the 
Christmas and New Years just past? Don't forget to do it. It 
will help you greatly in preparing for another year, but unless you 
get at it soon while the data are handy and the facts fresh in your 
mind, you will find it a bothersome job. 

Have you brought in a few clumps of hardy Phlox "Miss 
Lingard" and planted them on a bench in a 50-deg. house to propa- 
gate from ? 

Is there enough protection on the bulb stock outdoors to keep 
the frost out ? Plant cold storage bulbs of Lilium speciosum rubrum. 
By the end of the month sow seed of Cleveland Cherries and some 
of the Peppers for next Christmas. Sow out Dracaena indivisa and 
Smilax. 

Fresh seed of Asparagus plumosus can now be had. Order a 
good supply and sow the first batch in a warm house. Plan to use 
these as pot plants rather than as a source of long strings which 
can be more economically bought from specialists or large growers. 

Root cuttings of hardy Phlox can now be placed in flats filled 
with sandy sofl. Every piece about one inch long will break. Cover 
them one-half inch deep and place the flats in a cool house. You 
may be able to purchase 2- or 23^-in. stock of Snapdragons or 
Calendulas, which is just the thing for benching. 

Sow Pansies this month and they will give you fine blooming 
stock for late Summer. If you wish to be good to Carnations 
which are making an active growth, work into the surface of the 
benches a good dose of bonemeal. 



w 



42 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

FEBRUARY 

General Cultural Notes 

THILE weather conditions may be the same as they were during 
the previous month, the days are getting longer, and in almost 
everything new life appears, a sure sign we are making toward 
Spring. The Carnations show it; they can stand a light feeding if 
you haven't attended to this already last month. Maybe a mulch, 
half soil and half well-decomposed manure will be best. Watch 
the temperature and water carefully as before. 

The Sweet Peas are making an active growth, and after the 
first crop is off, a hght mulch and maybe a dose of sheep manure 
will benefit the plants and make for a fair second crop. The Snap- 
dragons can stand 50 deg. ; keep the flowering stems free of lateral 
growth. 

Easter Stock 

You can judge best for yourself about the Lilium giganteums; 
being on time. Six weeks before Easter you should see the buds; 
this will get them in nicely, but there are many growers who do it in 
less time. It can be done if you can put on plenty of steam. In- 
crease the temperature a little for the Ramblers in the pots; they 
should start into growth now. And the same with the Hydrangeas. 
Pot up a few Bleeding Hearts and variegated Funkias and place in 
a 45-deg. house; increasing the temperature later on. Spiraea ja- 
ponica or S. astilbe potted up a few weeks ago can be kept under- 
neath a bench until growth appears; the plants will come along 
all right in a 55-deg. house if wanted in flower by early April. 

Hybrid Tea Roses for Summer Flowering 

If you haven't already potted up a good number of Hybrid 
Teas for Spring sales and outdoor flowering, get at this work and 
place the plants after potting in a frame or coldhouse. Maybe 
you have two- or three-year-old bench plants on hand to be replaced 
bx.young stock. Withhold water from them gradually, and when in 
a dormant state, lift, cut back a little and pot up into 5s or 6s. 
You might say that all the Roses we grow under glass today are 
fine for Summer flowering outdoors, but of course some are better 
than others, and few equal Columbia. 

Perennials and Bulb Stock 

Stock heeled in last Fall in frames should be potted up now. 
If you have plants of Aquilegia, Delphinium, Coreopsis, GaiUardia, 
Pyrethrum, Achillea, or others that are too large for 3}^-in. pots, 
they can be divided. After potting, place the new plants in a cold- 
frame and give a good watering. A Uttle frost won't hurt them. 



THINGS TO BE DONE IN FEBRUARY 43 

You can also pot hardy climbers and Ramblers now, and place 
them with the perennials in a frame. 

With each week it becomes easier to bring Dutch bulb stock 
into flower. It is easier and there is less loss, because you are getting 
nearer its natural time of flowering. Be sure to provide a dark, 
cool place for the plants in bloom; it wiU give you better finished 
flowers and they will last longer. 

From now on, you wiU have no trouble in forcing Lily of the 
Valley. 

By the middle or end of this month your stock plants of Chrys- 
anthemum should be brought from the coldhouse to a 50-deg. 
temperature. Plant them out if you have a sunny bench, where 
they will soon be full of cuttings. These, when rooted, can be 
planted out again as stock to take more cuttings from. 

Propagating Bench and Seed Bed 

With all kinds of bottom heat you can root almost anything 
from a Cincinnati Begonia to Parlor Ivy. Carnations root best in a 
house of 50 deg. with a Httle heat below the sand. Keep the sand 
full of cuttings of bedding stock. Salvias rooted in February and 
grown cool wiU make fine 4-in. stock by the end of May; the same 
holds good with Fuchsias. 

Root variegated Vincas and English Ivies, of not too soft a 
growth, now. Also root Ivy Geraniums, Rose Geraniums and 
Lantanas and don't overlook the trailing Fuchsia for basket work. 

Lobelia, early Aster, Begonia, Coleus, Petunia, Dusty Miller, 
Salvia, Ageratum, Thunbergia, Verbena, single Dahha, Pansy, For- 
get-me-not, Pyrethrum and Coleus are only some of the many seeds 
of bedding stock to be sown in early February. Also for early 
flowering plants of Primula chinensis and P. obconica seed should 
be sown. 

Miscellaneous 

Get ready early with advertising for St. Valentine's Day, 
which each year grows more important. Watch your cut flower 
crops a little and do not cut too close the week before, so as to have 
a good supply on hand. Sweet Peas, Violets, Pansies, Forget-me-nots, 
Freesias and Mignonette are aU desirable flowers for corsages. But 
push flowering plants as weU — and that means that you must have a 
stock of them on hand. 

Start tuberous-rooted Begonias, fancy-leaved Caladiums and 
Gloxinias this month. Keep the Pelargoniums shifted. Place a 
few Genistas in a Carnation house by the end of the month. It 
is time to sow Asparagus plumosus and A. Sprengeri. 

Sweet Peas sown by the middle of the month wiU give you a 
fine crop during May. 



44 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




THINGS TO BE DONE IN FEBRUARY 45 

Give Calceolarias the final shift. Marguerite cuttings rooted 
during February will make good 4-in. pot plants by May and June 
for use in veranda boxes. Feed the Callas in pots with weak doses 
of liquid cow manure. 

The heavier roots of the small flowering Bouvardias cut up into 
1-in. long pieces and placed in sand with bottom heat will soon 
break into new growth, while the best way to root B. Humboldtii 
is by means of softwood cuttings. 

The small shoots at the base of the larger plants of PandanuS 
Veitchii will easily root in warm sand now; Dracaena terminalis 
canes cut up into 2-in. lengths wiU also root and break, and the 
tops of this variety can be removed from old plants and rooted now, 
The same holds good with Ficus. Place the stock plants of Coleus 
in a 60-deg. house if you want material in the way of cuttings 
for propagating. Quite a number of perennials can be sown indoors 
now and grown on for planting out in May. Among these just a 
few are Oriental Poppies, Larkspur, Columbine, GaiUardia, Lychnis, 
Shasta Daisy, Polyanthus Primulas, Pyrethrum, hardy Pinks, 
Rudbeckia, Anchusa and Valeriana. 

MARCH 

Easter and Other Bulb Stock 

'TTHE Lilies, perhaps, head the list of the many Easter plants. 
* They may need extra pushing in order to get them in on time. 
Hardly ever, with Easter falling around the end of March, is there 
much holding back to do when giganteums are made use of. The 
same holds good with the Ramblers and Hydrangeas ; with the latter 
a week or so in a cool house before Easter will not only harden off 
the plants, but also bring out the coloring of the flowers better. 

Deutzia gracilis, Bougainvillea, Rhododendron, Azalea, Spiraea 
— in fact, almost any plant — can, by the middle or end of March, 
be subjected to a high temperature without bad results. If found a 
little late, there is no alternative but to resort to forcing. The 
hothouse is, however, of no greater importance than the cold one 
in which, if necessary, things can be kept back or at a standstill for 
a few days. 

Whatever is being placed in strong heat must be given extra 
attention in regard to spraying and watering. To apply ice-cold 
water to a Lily or anything else to be forced, and in an 80-deg. or 
90-deg. house is a foolish thing to do, and you are bound to hurt the 
plants by allowing the soil in the pots to dry out. The more you 
force, the more it becomes a necessity to harden the stock off a little 
before it is placed on sale. 

To have double Tulips in flower by the end of March wiU re- 
quire close on to twenty-five days in a 55-deg. house, allowing a 



46 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 10. — A House op Hydrangeas. With proper heating facilities and a whole 
house devoted to Hydrangeas, it is far easier to time the plants so they will come 
in just right for Easter than when only a few plants are carried in a house of mixed 

stock 

few days in cooler quarters toward the end. Darwins will require- 
a few days longer, Narcissi a few days less, and the same with 
Hyacinths. If you have proper quarters in which to place the open 
flowers, always give them enough time. 



In the Cut Flower Houses 

No matter how wintry the weather on March the first, we are, 
for sure, on the way to Spring. The sun again plays an important 
part in warming things up during the daytime and the plants 
show the beneficial effects of it. There is less care needed in the 
houses for Nature is helping along and young, healthy growth can 
be noticed everywhere. Stock which has stood still is beginning to 
make headway, especially in the case of the Sweet Peas; you should 
be cutting, toward the end of March, your best flowers from those 
sown just after the Chrysanthemums. The same holds good with 
the Calendulas and the Lupines. The Canterbury Bells can go into 
a 50-deg. house now and the Snapdragons can stand even more. 

For Memorial and Mother's Days 

For a crop to cut from by the middle or end of May, double 

Feverfew benched in March is fine. Stocks sown out by the end 

of February or early March wiU be just right and the same with 

Snapdragons and Larkspur. Another good crop is ' Candytuft, 



THINGS TO BE DONE IN MARCH 47 

which should be sown in early March. Schizanthus is an excellent 
cut flower; Gladioli planted in March will flower during May; and 
the double Cornflower can be had at its best under glass. Canter- 
bury Bells make showy cut flowers if moved from the coldframes 
to a Carnation house temperature in March. Another splendid 
plant to cut from is hardy Larkspur; grow it on in solid beds- in a 
45-deg. house during March, increasing the temperature later on. 
Gypsophila elegans should be sown indoors from jfanuary on up to 
the middle of March, a little seed every ten days or so. Shirley 
Poppies sown in March make fine cut flowers during May and 
should be grown cool; Ageratum grown from seed furnishes desirable 
blue flowers during May ; you can sow the seed out where the plants 
are to flower on solid beds, thinning 'them out to 3 or 4 in. apart 
in the row. The blue Lace Flower (Didiscus) is another good cut 
flower, and just the thing if you want something a Uttle.out of the 
ordinary. Calendulas will produce large flowers and long stems if 
sown about the first of March and planted on a solid bed in weU- 
drained, rich soil. 

Almost any of the above, if sown during the latter part of Feb- 
ruary or early March, will flower for Mother's Day. A great deal 
depends, of course, on weather conditions. Besides these plants 
you should set apart a good number of flats with bulbous stock to 
be brought inside about the middle of April. As important as any 
are the Darwin Tulips of the lighter shades, not overlooking "Rev. 
Ewbank" with its beautiful soft shade of heliotrope. 

Bedding Stock and Miscellaneous 

Make another sowing of practicaUy all the seeds sown in Feb- 
ruary. Be sure of enough Rosy Morn Petunias, and don't overlook 
the giant California ruflled and fringed singles and Balcony Queen. 
Sow out a package each of Musk Plant and Sensitive Plant as these 
always attract attention. 

Start the Cannas, the Caladiums (C. esculentum) and a few 
Tuberoses. Put in a good batch of Impatiens, it is always desirable 
for shady positions. Also more Salvia. Heliotrope from cuttings 
rooted in March wiU make the best plants. So with Cuphea and 
double Alyssum. 

Get the hotbed sashes in shape as weU as the frames. You will 
want them soon. Prepare enough transplanting flats, provide pot- 
ting soil, and order what bedding plants you are short of to be de- 
livered right after Easter. Have you enough pots on hand? 

Keep on planting Gladioli, sow Sweet Peas in pots to be planted 
in the field later on, and pot up the Carnation cuttings as soon as 
they are rooted. They suffer if left in the sand too long. Give the 
variegated Vincas their last shift; they need a rich soil. 



48 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Order fertilizer and let your patrons know you have on hand 
what they need for their lawns and gardens. The sanie with grass 
seed. Order the shrubs you will need for Spring planting. 

The little Cyclamen most likely will need a shift, but don't 
overpot them. They should have a 55-deg. house and a sunny 
bench. Start to root 'Mum cuttings of the early sorts. 

Sow out Tomatoes, Eggplants, BuUnose Peppers, Early Cab- 
bage, Cauliflower and Parsley. There are always some among your 
patrons who are willing to pay a fair price for large Tomatoes, Egg- 
plants and Sweet Peppers in pots during May and June. 

Propagate Stevia this month and include the dwarf double sort. 
Root Genista cuttings with a little bottom heat. 

APRIL 

Bedding Stock 

SPRING is here for sure iiow, and in the plant houses we have to 
step lively in order to keep up with things. With Easter out of 
the way, the Geraniums want their fioaal shift. Strong 2J^s can be 
shifted at once into 4s, and the same holds good with Salvias, Petunias 
and Heliotropes. For the Geraniums, make use of a heavy soil and 
pot firmly.. 

There is still time to root cuttings of many plants which, in 
from eight to ten weeks at this time of year, will grow into salable 
stock. Among these there are the Salvias, Petunias, Ageratum, 
Heliotrope, Lantanas, Abutilon, and others. Make your main batch 
of Coleus cuttings toward the end of this month; in a month from 
the time you place the cuttings in the sand you will have salable 
plants in a 2- or 23^-in. pot. 

Have you a good stock of Mme. Salleroi Geraniums? You will 
peed this old favorite as it is still used a great deal for bordering. 
Then you most likely will have call for some of the other variegated 
leaf sorts such as "Happy Thought," "Mountain of Snow," or 
"Bronze Redder." Look over your stock and make note of what 
you may be short of; your assortment should be complete. See if 
you have all of the following: Rose Geraniums, Lemon Verbenas, 
Lantanas, double and single Lobelias, double and single Sweet 
Alyssum, Cupheas, variegated Glechomas, German Ivies, Impatiens, 
Achyranthes, Abutilon for bordering (such as "EcUpse," or "Sa- 
vitzii"), small Bostons for veranda boxes and vases, Asparagus 
Sprengeri for the same purpose, Alternantheras, Fuchsias, Ivy 
Geraniums, Pelargoniums, DahUas, Cannas, Ageratums, Helio- 
tropes, EngUsh Ivy and bedding Begonias. If short you will have 
no trouble in obtaining either rooted cuttings or 23^-in. stock of 
most of these items. Don't carry just Geraniums, Cannas and 
Salvias. You need more of an assortment — in fact, the larger it is, 
the better. 



THINGS TO BE DONE IN APRIL 



49 



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Fig. 11.— An Azalea Basket for Easter. Pink Baby Rambler Roses and a white 

Azalea in a gilded wicker basket mEike a good combination for patrons who want 

something really showy irrespective of price 



Using the Hotbeds 

Why not make good use of the hotbeds during this month? 
A lot of bedding stock can be grown to perfection in frames with 
just a Uttle bottom heat. There is no better place for Alternantheras, 
Fuchsias, LobeUas, Begonias, Geraniums, Gannas, Heliotropes, etc. 

About the middle of the month sow annuals to be sold for 
planting out by the end of May. Your patrons will want them. 
The ones which have, perhaps, the most call are the Asters, Zinnias, 
Marigolds, Calendulas, Snapdragons, Scabiosas, Everlastings, Cos- 
mos, Verbenas, Balsam, Salpiglossis and annual Larkspur. 

There is always a demand for 2>^-in. annuals of the above men- 
tioned sorts and seed sown by the last of March or first of April 
will give you seedUngs ready to be potted up by the first of May in 
plenty of time to make fair stock by first of June. Snapdragons 
and Salpiglossis will take a httle longer. Don't neglect to have a 
nice lot of early flowering, outdoor Chrysanthemums to offer in May. 



50 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLROICULTURE 

Flowering Plants for Next Winter 
The largest of the Cyclamens should go into S^s now; they 
will do nicely in the house where your best Geraniums are; that is, 

for the next eight weeks. .„ , . ^, ^ j n 

The first sown Primula obconica will be in 23^s, and well es- 
tabUshed by this time, so make a second sowing. Primula chinensis, 
if wanted for December flowering, should be sown now. By the end 
of the month make the first sowing of Cinerarias if you want flower- 
ing plants next November. Get the dormant Poinsettias up and 
after potting them, place them into a 60-deg. house. They will 
furnish you cuttings byJune. 

Propagate a good batch of the old favorites m Begonias and 
include a good number of Chatelaine; they will come in handy next 
Fall and Winter. Cincinnati Begonias can, from the end of April 
on, be handled in the average establishment without much trouble; 
you wfll want weU-estabUshed 2-in. stock to start with. 

While not used as flowering plants, the Cleveland Cherries 
are of no less importance to the average florist; if you have no 
small stock you can purchase some now— and the same with the 
various Peppers. 

The small shoots from the base of the Hydrangea plants will 
furnish good cuttings now; these root easily, to be planted out later 
on or grown on in pots. 

The First Outdoor Work 

Work the ground as soon as possible to get things ready for 
planting out, but don't handle heavy soil while in a wet state. 
Sow Sweet Peas as early as possible. Lining out stock of shrubs 
should also be planted as soon as weather conditions permit. Small 
conifers are best transplanted when the ground has warmed up a 
httle. Push the sale of shrubs ; get into this profitable side Une. 
Gradually remove the covering from the perennials and the bulbous 
stock. 

The 2J^-in. Carnations can now be brought in to a coldframe 
to harden off a little. Protect them with sash during cold weather. 
The Sweet Peas in pots can also be brought out into a frame. Plant 
a nice batch of Gladioli in a frame. Sow double Cornflowers in a 
frame, also Gypsophila elegans. 

Dormant bench-grown Roses can stiU be potted up for Spring 
sales. Don't overlook Killarney and Butterfly. Pot up some more 
cold storage Lilium giganteums and L. speciosum rubrums. Pot 
up, in early April, the dormant Bouvardia Humboldtii plants and 
cut them back a little. Pot up dormant Ampelopsis Veitchii, Climb- 
ing Honeysuckles, Wistarias and other climbers to be sold during 
Spring and Summer out of 5-in. and 6-in. pots. Get ready to plant 
Roses out of 2-in. or 2J^-in. pots for indoor flowering. The early 
Chrysanthemums should be benched by the end of this month. 



THINGS TO BE DONE IN MAY 51 

MAY 
The Bedding Stock 

'THERE are still thousands of plants to be shifted and many 
» more to be transplanted; in fact, there's no end of work to do. 
The last lot of plants isn't nearly ready before the first is ready to go 
out. Try to manage to have stock coming along up to the middle 
of July, for while a lot of business is done before Memorial Day, 
with many bedding out doesn't really start until June is under 
way. * 

Keep on propagating, transplanting, sowing, and don't let up. 
Start the filling of veranda boxes and hanging baskets early. There 
is nothing like having a good sample on hand for visitors to look at. 
Space the large Geraniums a little to give them room for proper 
development. Keep the large Petunias tied up, and the same with 
the Gobaeas. It's cheaper to do that than to ruin the plants, 
which means a total loss and waste. Watch the hotbeds and the 
coldframes; proper watering and ventilating mean everything. 
Don't get caught napping during a cold night. The potted Hybrid 
Tea Roses, however, have had no sash over them for the past month 
and don't need any ; you don't want them to make much of a growth 
or get soft. 

More Work Outdoors 

Here, as well as inside, there is no end of work. The Carnations 
should be planted and a little frost won't hurt them if they have had 
a chance to harden off a little in a coldframe. 

Plant the Dahlias and Gladioli. Start to cultivate the her- 
baceous plants, which were overwintered outdoors. A little manure 
worked in between the Peonies won't hurt. Plant out the young 
Phlox you propagated during the Winter months and the perennials 
grown from seed sown during the latter part of January and in Feb- 
ruary. 

You can still divide Shasta Daisies, Iris and other hardy plants 
if short on stock, but the earlier in the season this is done, the bet- 
ter. Get a seed bed ready now and sow more biennials and peren- 
nials such as Canterbury Bells, Foxglove, Larkspur, Columbines 
and others which take rather a long time to develop. 

If you are short on Phloxes, purchase some now and get the 
benefit of a season's growth. This holds good with many other 
perennials you may wish to work up a stock from. Why not plant 
out a few long rows of small Spruces, Pines, Arborvitae and 
Cedars? They will grow into money while you sleep and are 
bound to come in handy some day. The same is true of Berberis 
Thunbergii, Lilacs, Bush Honeysuckle, Weigela, Red-Twigged 
Dogwood, Forsythia, Philadelphus, Hydrangeas— in fact, almost 



52 



FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




THINGS TO BE DONE IN MAY 53 

anything in the way of shrubs. You can purchase lining-out stock 
in the neighborhood of $25 to $30 per 1000 and, if you have space, 
what about planting out a few Red Leaf and Cutleaf Maples, Horse 
Chestnuts, Elms, Ashes, or other small trees? They will all grow 
into money. 

Sow Summer Flowering Annuals 

Sow this month outdoors where they are to flower, seeds of 
annuals. Among such we have the Gentaureas, Gypsophila, Candy- 
tuft, Everlastings, Zinnia, Larkspur, miniature Sunflowers, Schi- 
zanthus, Celosias, Scabiosa, Snapdragons, Salpiglossis, Calliopsis, 
Marigolds, Cosmos, Calendulas, Poppies, Nasturtiums, Clarkia 
and others. Asters are better when transplanted from the frames. 
For the late ones seed should be sown by the end of this month out- 
doors; later, transplant the seedhngs where they are to flower. 

The Chrysanthemums and Their Care 

With most florists the Chrysanthemums are one of the im- 
portant crops. May first should find us well under way with a nice 
lot of 2}4s on hand of the early and midseason varieties and such 
as are to be grown on as pot plants. Keep the sand full of rooting 
cuttings and keep more coming along on the stock plants. You will 
need shade on the cuttings now. By all means make a note of what 
young stock you have on hand, map out exactly what benches are 
to be planted, and, if short on certain varieties, order without delay. 

Are you going to grow a few of the very early Pompons outdoors 
to be protected with temporary frames and sashes next Fall? It 
wiU pay you. 

Miscellaneous 

In early May, sow out another lot of annuals in coldframes. 
They may come in handy when the earlier hotbed-sown ones are 
sold out. A few rows of Zinnias, Gosbqos or Scabiosas don't take up 
much space, but, even when sold at a low price, they will bring in 
more money for the space they take up and the work you have with 
them than almost anything else. If you are going to have an empty 
house with solid beds which are not going to be used until Fall, 
consider planting it with a good strain of Asters. Snapdragon wiU 
also make a paying crop. 

Carnations put of 3- or SJ^-in. pots can be benched in May 
or planted on solid beds. Some growers are very successful with 
this method of culture. 

Cold storage speciosum Lilies started in February or March, 
can also be planted out under glass. You can also plunge a few of 
them in pots out in a coldframe. Shift a few of your tuberous-rooted 



54 



FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



Begonias into larger pots. Don't wet the foliage of the Gloxinias 
too much; you want them for show during the Summer months, 
and the same is true of the fancy -leaved Caladiums. 

JUNE 

Bedding Stock Progress 

TO plant out a bench of your best Geraniums for stock is always 
a good investment when you use many thousands of them 
each Spring. No good grower will wait to select his stock plants 
until the end of the bedding season and take what is left. 

When things begin to thin out in the plant houses is the time 
to keep on moving the remainders together. Your stock will look 
better and is easier to take care of that way. Plant out enough 
Cannas for stock, but only the very best varieties, such as The Presi- 
dent, Mrs. F. Conard, Hungaria and King Humbert, which are 
among the most desirable of bedders today. 

Don't wait until the last variegated and green Vinca and 
Enghsh Ivy are gone before you order more. You are hot through 
with your bedding plant season when your own stock is gone; keep 
on preparing until there is no more demand. If you have grown on 
enough Petunias from seed sown at different times and kept the 
stock transplanted and shifted, you can always do business away 
into July. 




out you have to do fo.^v^.r^r''^" ^/°^ P""^^- ^° "^^"^^ ^°^ "'"ch bedding 
aioTdfnr,.^!; 7,° Patr°ns-for ornamental effect, of course-you cannrt 
anord to neglect setting out your own stock plants when it is time to do it 



THINGS TO BE DONE IN JUNE 55 

Outdoors and Indoors 

Resow where the seed of any annuals failed to grow; transplant 
Asters; plant a few more Gladioli or Dahlias out of pots; plant out 
a part of your Cleveland Cherries, and let the others grow on in pots. 
Plant out either rooted cuttings or 2-in. stock of variegated and 
green Vincas and English Ivies. Small Dracaena indivisa plants 
can also be planted out in the field; the same with Hydrangeas. 
Plant out Stevia, too. 

Finish planting Roses and Chrysanthemums and start repairing 
benches in the Carnation houses. Clean up on top of and below the 
benches, whitewash, paint, scrub, do everything to make things 
clean and sweet. 

Get the soil ready for filUng the Carnation benches. Shade 
the fern and palm house, but don't get things too dark for the 
Bostons; they don't need it. A little shade on the Carnation houses 
will help along, that is, for the old plants still giving you fair flowers. 
The young stock doesn't need shade, in fact, it must have all the 
sun possible, as well as plenty of ventilation. 

A good, heavy soil is necessary for the Rose benches and it 
won't hurt the Chrysanthemums. Don't forget that October and 
even November varieties can be flowered outdoors in normal seasons 
over much of the country. Handle and support like those indoors 
and protect with sash top and cloth sides in late Fall. Plant Smilax 
out of 2H-in. pots this month, and put up the wires and strings 
at the same time. For November and early December flowering, 
plant now, out of cold storage, Lilium speciosum vars. rubrum 
and album. You can also plant to advantage cold storage Lilium 
giganteum. Start to dry off the C alias if not already done; but 
keep on shifting small plants of Godfrey Calla into larger pots. 
Start to root Poinsettias now; the early ones are best for bench- 
ing, and will give you the largest stems and bracts. Go over the 
palm house, shift plants, clean leaves, apply a mulch to some, and 
throw out what are no good. 

Looking Ahead a Little 

Put away nicely the hotbed sashes not wanted any longer; the 
same with the flower pots, keeping each size by itself. Order the 
Bamboo stakes, the wire, and the twine that will be wanted later on 
for the Chrysanthemums and the Carnations. Stock up with in- 
secticides, which you will need right along. Buy paint and putty, 
as well as glass for repairing the roofs later on. Don't put off what- 
ever changes or alterations you intend making on the place; June, 
while only the beginning of Summer, is the time to start such work 
if you want to get through before Fall. Plant out a few Buddleias, 
they give fine cut flowers. 



56 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

JULY 

Outdoor and Indoor Activities 

KEEP the cultivator working overtime. There is nothing quite 
as beneficial as cultivation; it beats manure and rain. Keep 
the soil stirred up and let it breathe. The drier the season the more 
cultivation becomes a necessity. In early July, sow Hollyhocks, 
Gaillardia, Coreopsis, Pyrethrum, hardy Pinks, Shasta Daisies, 
Columbine, Helenium, Delphinium, Anchusa, Sweet William, Rud- 
beckia, hardy Primulas, Achillea, Heliopsis, Hibiscus and others. 

A planting of Gladiolus about the tenth will result in a late 
crop of flowers. Sow another lot of annuals such as Zinnia, Larkspur, 
Cosmos, Schizanthus, Calliopsis, Scabiosa, Candytuft, Salpiglossis 
and Calendulas. 

Sow Cinerarias and Calceolarias, more Primula chinensis and 
P. obconica, also P. malacoides. Attend to the shifting of the Cy- 
clamens and Begonias, but do not overpot. It is time now to obtain 
small table fern seedlings and pot them up into 23^s for next Fall. 
If you can spare the bench room, you cannot devote it to anything 
better than Boston Ferns. Small stock planted out now wiU result 
in salable 5-in. and 6-in. pot plants by October. Plant Asparagus 
Sprengeri in a deep bench or in large-sized hanging baskets ; you will 
need the green during the Winter months. Bench Bouvardia Hum- 
boldtii now. Sow seed of a good strain of pink Snapdragon for 
Winter flowering. 

Carnations and Chrysanthemums 

Get the benches filled with soil and start to plant by the middle 
of the month. Select cloudy days if you can, but do not wait a 
month for them. Stock left in the field should be kept cultivated 
and pinched back if you want to sell the plants for housing. If not, 
let them flower; they wiU keep it up untU frost, and wiU pay well 
for themselves if you are in a position to retail the flowers. 

Keep the newly housed plants pinched; don't overwater; and 
cultivate the surface of the soil lightly, the oftener the better. Any 
plant with the least sign of stem rot should be removed at once, and 
a httle of the soU surrounding it as weU. Don't have shade on top 
of the house any longer than is necessary, and spray the plants 
rather lightly several times during the day. 

Shift and pinch the pot plants and pinch the Pompons. If the 
plants in the benches are once well established there isn't much 
danger of overwatering, but be careful just the same. 

Keep the stock sprayed regularly. Do not miss this, it will help 
more than anything else to keep away trouble, not only in the way 
ot bugs, but of disease also. There is stiU time to bench very late 



a,i 



THINGS TO BE DONE IN JULY 



57 



varieties, for which purpose rooted cuttings often answer, especially 
if they consist of Pompons. Small Poinsettia stock can be benched 
now. 

Repairs and Pbepabations 
Keep the hammer and the paint brush busy. Look over the 
heating plant. Clean the boilers, inside and out, below and on top, 
and the smoke stack as well. Look out for coal. Get busy on the 
roofs. Keep the show house attractive. If you haven't ordered all 
your requirements in Freesias, Paperwhites, Lilies and Dutch bulbs, 
do so now. You will want bulb flats soon; do not have them less 
than 3 in. in depth nor too large in size. 




Fig. 14. — Soil Ready for Summer Benching. It is always a great advantage to 
have a good-sized pile of soil near the greenhoTlses and easy to get to. It will save 

worry and delay 



AUGUST 

Conventions and Cultural Notes 
TF there is not any new building or any extensive repair work 
'^ going on, August is usually the quietest of the twelve months 
in the year. It has always been so and was therefore selected as 
the best month in which to hold the annual S. A. F. and 0. H. 
Convention. Attend, by all means, if there is any way to do it. 

The Carnations should be all housed before the tenth, and the 
whole establishment be in first-class shape, ready for Fall, which will 
soon be with us again. 



58 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

The Roses, Carnations, and Chrysanthemums in the benches 
need their usual amount of attention in the way of watering, cul- 
tivating and spraying. With just ordinary care they will make 
good headway. Everything is now in favor of plant growth — light, 
heat, and fresh air; and with normal conditions, things usually 
move along nicely. 

Watch your Cyclamens. They and the Begonias all need a 
little shade, plenty of moisture in the houses they are in, and hberal 
sized pots. With the approach of cool nights they all seem to grow 
better and make more headway. 

There is not a great deal that's new to be done outdoors. Cul- 
tivating and cutting flowers so as to not let them go to seed are the 
main items of the daily work. By the end of the month Iris and 
Peonies can be lifted and divided, and one can do this with quite a 
number of other kinds of hardy stock. All of the biennials and 
perennials sown a month or two ago are now ready for transplanting, 
and more may be sown. A first sowing of Pansies can be made about 
the first of August, followed by a second toward the end of this 
month. The same with English Daisies and Forget-me-nots. 

Hydrangeas, Genistas, Bougainvilleas, Roses and other stock 
grown on during the Summer months in pots demand careful at- 
tention in regard to watering. If out in the open, always plunge the 
pots up to their rims in the soil, and help along with a light miJch. 

Start Cyclamens and Freesias 

For extra strong Cyclamens you should sow seed by the end of 
July or early in August. It takes in the neighborhood of sixteen 
months to grow Christmas-flowering stock. 

A first planting of Freesias may be made in early August. 
Make use of the larger-sized bulbs for the purpose. If done on a 
small scale, it is as well to start them in pots outdoors in a frame. 
Do not cover the pots over with soil, as you would with Dutch bulbs, 
but place a shade frame over them to prevent the sun from drying 
the soil out. Five good sized bulbs are sufficient for a 4-in. pot. 

Sowing and Rooting Future Stocks 

Pinch back the Stevias, the Cleveland Cherries and the Bou- 
vardias. Of the latter, the small flowering varieties are just as well 
planted outdoors during Summer, and the plants carefully Ufted 
during August and planted on a bench. You can treat Bouvardia 
Humboldtii in the same way, but it is just as well to plant the stock 
under glass in May or June. 

For next Spring's use for the filling of window boxes sow, by 
the end of July or early in August, Grevillea robusta. This is a most 
useful plant for the retail grower. Plant out a few leftover double 



THINGS TO BE DONE IN AUGUST 59 

Sweet Alyssums along the Carnation bench. Grow on a few Mrs. 
F. Sanders Marguerites in pots for Winter flowering, to be planted 
on a bench or solid bed next month. 

The buds of the early Chrysanthemums may be selected this 
month; do not neglect to pinch the outdoor ones back, but not 
later than the early part of August, so as to obtain fair-sized stems 
on the flowers to be cut later. Keep on sowing Gypsophila, you will 
need the flowers right along. Order now what you may be short of 
in pots ; you will most likely need quite a few of the larger sizes next 
month. 

For Midwinter flowering sow a good strain of Calendula now. 
This can just as well be done outdoors in a coldframe, and the 
seedlings potted up into 23^s later on. 

Sow your first batch of Lupines to be benched later on to foUow 
the 'Mums. If you have a good strain of Snapdragons in the field, 
why not root a good batch of cuttings and pot them up later ? You 
may have occasion to use them this Fall. Make another sowing of 
Cinerarias and Calceolarias, also of Primula malacoides for late 
Spring flowering. 

This is a good month to root Alternantheras. You can root 
them in shallow flats by the end of the month, making use of a sandy 
sofl mixture. Give them plenty of space so you can let them re- 
main in these flats over Winter when rooted. They will be prac- 
tically at a standstill during cold weather. Also root some Coleus; 
these, if grown on and kept shifted, will make fine stock plants to 
propagate from during next Winter and Spring. If you use the 
variegated Glechoma for boxes and baskets in Spring, cut some of 
the stems now into 4-in. long pieces, put three or four together and 
pot up into 3i^s. They will root in a few days and can remain in 
these pots in a coldframe until wanted next March, when they 
can be divided, repotted and grown on in a Carnation house. Sow 
Mignonette seed now in 23^-in. pots for December flowering. If 
you want to grow on candid um Lilies this is the time to plant them, 
either outdoors or in pots. Begin to take cuttings of Geraniums 
from plants in the field. They can be rooted in a coldframe and, if 
given plenty of room, can remain there up to November. 

SEPTEMBER 

In the 'Mum and Carnation Houses 

TYING up, cultivating, disbudding, watering and keeping the 
plants free from insects — all these tasks keep us busy this 
month among the Chrysanthemums. 

Whatever you do, see to it that the stock is kept clean. The 
plants, especiaUy the midseason and late varieties, are making their 
best growth now. If there is room, apply a mulch of three parts 



60 



FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




THINGS TO BE DONE IN SEPTEMBER 61 

well decomposed manure and one part soil. The single stem sorts 
should be kept clean of all lateral growth, and always see to it that 
there is sufficient moisture in the houses. The pot plants need feed- 
ing with liquid cow manure ; that is better than to keep on shifting 
them too often, for the object is to obtain a good-sized plant in a 
small pot. You cannot do much pinching back on any of them 
after August. 

While a wetting down of the wa;lks in the houses is a fine thing 
during the hot Summer evenings, let up a little on that as you go 
along in September. In other words, avoid an excess of moisture 
over night, but always keep the soil in the benches as well as in the 
pots in a moist state. Drying out will not help plants that are 
making a fine growth. 

You should have no trouble in the Carnation houses during this 
month. Growing conditions are just ideal, sunny days, plenty of 
ventilation and cool nights being just what Carnations want. They 
are well established by this time and the first planted ones are pro- 
ducing fair-sized stems with good flowers, which may come in very 
useful even with the appearance of the early Chrysanthemums. 
Watch the soil; if a bench does not dry out in certain spots as fast 
as in others, find out the reason for it. Keep on cultivating and of 
there should happen to be any yellow leaves at the base of some if 
the plants, remove them. 

Have all the supports in place long before the plants are in 
need of them. 

POINSETTIAS AND RoSES 

This is fine growing weather for the plants. They can stand 
almost any temperature with the sun shining, but they seem to enjoy 
cool nights as much as the Chrysanthemums and the Carnations. 
Stake the single stem ones, and with the later propagated 23^-in. 
stock, make up a good number of pans. Do not put this off until 
October; have a good number under way at least by the middle of 
this month. It is getting late for propa^ting, but early September- 
rooted cuttings often make useful Uttle plants for retailing in made- 
up basket arrangements for the holidays. 

With the young stock benched in May or June, there has not 
been much special care or watching needed up to the present; here, 
as with the Chrysanthemums, weather conditions have helped to do 
most of the work. The plants, in a good, stiff soil with pjoper water- 
ing, have made a fine growth, and while it will be some time yet 
before you cut fancy flowers and stems, with the approach of cooler 
weather as the plants get weU under way, the new wood becomes 
stronger and stronger. 

What is perhaps of the greatest importance from now on, is 
careful ventilation. Cold winds striking the young, soft growth 



62 



FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig 16 — ^A Prize Show of Dahlias. You needn't wait for Chrysanthemum 

time to arrange a show window or make a display. Dahlias will produce fine effects 

and almost equal the 'Mums in size and wealth of varieties 



of the plant is the very worst thing that could happen. It is the 
easiest thing in the world to invite a dose of mildew, right now, 
and while it is not always in your power to prevent this, it can often 
be traced directly to improper ventilation. With Roses, it is, more 
than anything, a matter of constant watching; open and shut your 
ventilators twenty times a day if necessary. That is the only way 
right now when we are gradua ly changing from Summer to Winter 
conditions. 

You will never be successful if you merely open the ventilators 
when things warm up in the early forenoon and leave them open 
until late in the afternoon The man who brings his plants from 
Summer into Winter without the least check will have the best 
results. A touch of fire during chilly nights, proper ventilation, and 
careful watering are what you want to provide from now on. 

Cyclamen and Begonias 

Plants that made but little headway during the early Summer, 
are now, and from the middle of August have been, making up for 
lost time, that is, if they were not in a stunted condition. They need 
a shift as soon as you find the roots are starting to form a mat, and 



THINGS TO BE DONE IN SEPTEMBER 63 

with ordinary care, they will spread out and expand their beautiful 
leaves which mean so much in making a specimen plant. If you 
have had your plants out in a frame during the Summer (as practiced 
by: many successful growers) ' get them now into an airy house on 
a sunny bench, with plenty of ventilation; They do not recjuire any 
further shading; if you find that during extremely hot weather the 
plants start to wilt, spray a little. * The young seedlings should be 
removed from the seed flats and transplanted into other flats as 
soon as t^ey are large enough to handle, making use of a hght sofl 
with a liberal admixture of sand. 

Even those who do riot want the' bother of growing on Cin- 
cinnati Begonias, those ideal Christmas specimens, frcSm cuttings, 
can now obtain well estabUshed plants out of 3J^s or 4s, and will 
have but little trouble in growing them on further in a 55-deg. house. 

Potted Plants, Bulbs and Other Stock 

Keep shifting the Cinerarias, the Primulas, the Cherries,' and 
Begonias; most aU of them do nicely in a cool, airy house. If short, 
stock up now with smal specimens. All of these plants are more 
easily handled than was possible earlier in the season. Pot up more 
seedling ferns for dishes and a good stock of Asparagus plumostis. 
You will want them next Christmas. It is a good mOnth to stock 
up with palms and other decorative stock. 

The first Paperwhites are arriving. Plant a few in flats and place 
in a frame outdoors. Plant more Freesias. Roman Hyacinths and 
Grand Soleil d'Or Narcissi are indispensable for the Midwinter 
holidays. There is nothing finer for dishes and baskets. Order a 
few French-grown Trumpet Major Narcissi for early forcing. In 
early September is a good time to start Callas into growth again. 

Start to root Geranium cuttings. Get the roofs in shape. 
Have you painted the gutters ? Is the boiler in good order ? 

With each day, from now on, you will become ipore busy. Do 
what you can each day to catch up, there is hardly ever any chance 
to get ahead of your work. If there is a chance, arrange for a good 
supply of potting soil for next Winter and Spring. Transplant all 
your perennial seedlings into their Winter quarters. There is no 
better time than right now to divide Peonies and Iris, and, in fact, 
almost anything in herbaceous stock that needs dividing. If this 
is done now and the stock replanted, it will have a chance to become 
re-established before Winter sets in. 

If you are going to plant more Peonies in such varieties as you 
are short of, do so now. Transplant all of your Pansies where they 
are to remain until in flower next Spring. Always select a few of 
the strongest, and plant them by themselves in a frame where you 
can get hold of them later on when wanted for benching. The same 
holds good with Forget-me-nots and Bellis. 



64 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

You may consider sowing out a few Pansies by the middle of 
September in a frame where they can remain all Winter and be 
transplanted the following Spring. 

Keep up the cultivating outdoors; do not let Winter find you 
with a lot of weeds among the hardy stock or the conifers. Are 
you pushing Fall planting and outdoor work ? Let folks know about 
it. Call their attention to the fact that you are in the ring. There 
is always more or less of such work to be done, and frequently 
people do not think about it until reminded of it. Every florist 
located in a country town can and should work up this branch. 
There is money in it, and so there is in Fall bulbs. 

Start to make an attractive display right now and keep on 
adding to it, as more bulbs come in. Advertise in your local paper 
and keep it up. You needn't lose a single one of the bulbs you have 
on display; what is left over you can use yourself later on. Who is 
there better fitted to handle bulbs for Winter and Spring flowermg 
than the local florist of a town? Who is there better able to talk 
to people about the different varieties and what they are best 
adapted for than he? We haven't started yet to take advantage 
of the great money making possibihties there are in retailing bulbs 
in Fall. Millions more of them could be disposed of if they were 
pushed. A lot more people could enjoy their beautiful flowers, and 
a lot more florists gain much by handling them. 



OCTOBER 

Fall Work Outdoors 

VOU may have lifted some of your Cleveland Cherries already, 
*^ and brought them into a frame or indoors; if there are any more 
to be lifted do it at once. September really is the best month to 
hft and pot these Cherries, Dracaenas and Stevias; they seem to 
become re-established so much quicker. 

From the end of September on, there is no telling how soon a 
heavy frost may come along to cut everything down or check things. 
Whatever there is to be brought indoors that will suffer in the least 
from frost, should, therefore, be brought in at once. 

Pot up the Hydrangeas. If lifted carefuUy they will not lose 
their leaves, and if placed in a coldframe they will keep on making 
roots and become nicely potbound before Winter sets in. Roses 
outdoors in pots intended for forcing should be gradually hardened 
and gotten into a dormant condition. You do not want soft growth; 
the better ripened the wood is, the easier and better they force, and 
the more flowers they bear. Gradu^y withhold water and keep 
them a little on the dry side. You can do this with the pot plants 
which, if necessary, can be laid on their side toward the end of the 



THINGS TO BE DONE IN OCTOBER 



65 



month; but over the stock planted out in the field you have no such 
control, and it is much better left alone as long as good weather 
prevails. 

If you have heavy plants of hardy Phlox (such varieties as Eliza- 
beth Campbell, Rynstrom, W. C. Egan or others, outside of Miss 
Lingard) and wish to increase your stock rapidly, lift the plants, 
remove all of the heavier roots and spread in a coldframe with a 
layer of sand below and one on top of them. These roots can be 
cut up into 1-in. long pieces and started into growth inside in 
sand next February; every piece will give you a new plant. The old 
plants can be divided and replanted and will come out fine next 
Spring; a fittle protection should be given to prevent the frost lifting 
the plants out of the ground. 

Pot up a good number of Canterbury Bells and English Wall- 
flowers and place in a frame. Lift Shasta Daisies, Coreopsis and, 
by all means, a good number of Delphiniums. There is nothing fitner 
than Delphiniums, and especially the beUadonna hybrids when slowly 
forced under glass for Spring flowering. Good one-year-old plants 
wiU do for forcing, but two- or three-year clumps are better. Aqui- 
legia or Columbine makes another good perennial for late forcing. 
AU these plants, when hfted, can go into a coldframe. You do not 
want any of them inside much before February and March, and 
should never expose any of them to a high temperature. 




Fig. 17. — Outdoor Chrysanthemums Here is a good -way to make use of the 

space between the greenhouses. With just a little protection many fine varieties 

will do weU here when they would prove a failure in the open field 



66 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Lift some Polyanthus Primulas; they should go into the Violet 
house. Lift your English Ivies and pot them up. The green and 
variegated Vincas should also come in; cut them well back and 
either pot them up after they have been divided, or place the clumps 
in a frame until you get room on the benches later on. 

It is at this time of the year that you appreciate your cold- 
frames. There is no better place for many kinds of plants, either to 
overwinter in or to be kept in for a few months. 

If you want to have stock of herbaceous plants in pots for next 
Spring and Summer (there is always a demand for such plants, and 
this demand is sure to become greater as we go along), you had better 
lift a good number of the different varieties you carry or have out 
in the field now. Heel them in a frame so you can get at them 
next February or March when ready to pot them. 

Have you labeled all of the Dahhas and Cannas? The first 
good frost will make this impossible, so get at it in good time. 

Lift your Gladioli and dry the bulbs off nicely outdoors before 
they are brought under cover. Whenever possible, keep the va- 
rieties separate. 

Whenever the tops of the Dahlias or Cannas have been cut 
down by frost, Uft them before a spell of bad weather sets in. This 
holds good with all outdoor operations : do what you can, and do it 
quickly. 

There is nothing like turning soil over deeply in Fall, and letting 
it lie rough over Winter so the frost will go through it and sweeten it. 
If there is transplanting to be done, get at it. Move your stock to- 
gether; have the beds and rows of perennials filled up properly, and 
turn over what empty space you have, so as to be able to get at the 
Spring planting early next year. There is always a rush during 
Spring; work piles up and, at best, you have only a few weeks in 
which to do the planting of hardy stock. Therefore, if for no other 
reason, do what you can in the Fall. Get whatever you can in the 
Hue of outdoor work out of the way. 

\ 

Watchful Waiting Indoors 

We are making toward Winter. We may experience ice one 
day and 60 deg. the next, and a rainy week may be followed by 
warm, sunny days. All this means that we must watch out with 
the firing and ventilating to maintain under glass the right temper- 
ature and growing atmosphere. 

Nothing hurts Roses, Carnations, or Chrysanthemums— the 
three main crops with so many florists— more than sudden changes 
of temperature, particularly when they are once used to indoor 
conditions. It is really harder to run a greenhouse now than when 
Winter has once set in. 



THINGS TO BE DONE IN OCTOBER 67 

A little feeding will do the Chrysanthemums good as soon as 
the buds are formed. Keep your houses well ventilated and let a 
rather dry atmosphere prevail over night. As soon as the first 
Chrysanthemums leave, have the benches cleared and follow up with 
something else. If you retail your stock do not cut too close. Keep 
up a show all through the Chrysanthemum season. 

As a crop to follow Chrysanthemums, which are through flow- 
ering by the middle of October, you might consider single Violets. 
Others are Sweet Peas, Snapdragon, Calendulas, Stocks, Pansies, 
Marguerites, Schizanthus, Paperwhites, Freesias out of pots, Callas, 
formosum Lilies or Carnations which were lifted in August, potted 
up and kept in a frame up to the present 

Usually in the smaller establishments where a great variety of 
stock is handled, there is no trouble in quickly filling up every avail- 
able inch of space. It is more a matter of finding or figuring out 
what to fiOOi up with in order to get the biggest returns. 

Bulbous and Other Stock 

With each day something else will be arriving in the way of 
bulbs. Whether Tulips, Narcissi, Hyacinths, Iris or something else, 
plant as soon as you can — that is, all those you want to force under 
glass the coming Winter. For outdoor planting you have plenty of 
time. 

Have you piled up enough soil for this Winter, and in a place 
where you can get hold of it no matter what the weather? Put a 
good number of Stevias in a cool house to be brought into warmer 
quarters as needed later on. Do not plant all of your Paperwhites 
at one time, for you do not want the flowers all to come inside of a 
week. Keep 60 deg. in the Poinsettia house; the plants grown on 
benches can get along with a httle less. Light doses of liquid cow 
manure are of benefit to the pot 'Mums up to the time the buds 
show color. 

The Carnations should be disbudded and stiU lightly cultivated. 
Keep the flowering stems clean of the small lateral growth which 
usually appears in Fall. The outdoor 'Mums need sashes over 
them. It is not frost alone that hurts them; rainy weather is fully 
as bad for the flowers whfle opening up. 

Keep the propagating bench busy this month. Your main crop 
of Geraniums, rooting now, will be ready for potting in November. 

NOVEMBER 

Thanksgiving Preparations 

YOU can cut Pompons ten days before Thanksgiving and have 
them in good shape for that day; the flowers wiU answer nicely. 
You will need a cool, dry and rather dark place in which to keep 



68 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

them and a lot of fresh, clean water. It is a mistake to cut 'Mums 
too close a couple of weeks before Thanksgiving, and the same holds 
good with the Carnations. Of course, on the other hand, you do 
not want to allow the flowers to go to sleep on the plants. Be pre- 
pared with a good supply of Cyclamen and other flowering stock 
and even a few plant baskets. 

Cultural Notes 

With each day there wiU be more flowers on the Cyclamens. 
Those intended for late November and December flowering need a 
house of 55 deg. ; the others can stand a little less. Do not try to 
force into flower plants that are not far enough advanced, for it 
cannot be done. Plants with buds weU advanced can be hustled 
along in a 60-deg. house, but it is bound to result in a soft growth 
so that you will need stakes to hold the flowers up. 

Select the most forward plants and place them in pots on a 
sunny bench allowing plenty of room between them. Early sown 
Primula obconica can stand a 55-deg. house; when the plants start 
to flower they can stand just a little protection against the noon 
sun; it wiU help the flowers. Chinese Primula do nicely in a 50-deg. 
house and, by the end of the month, should be a mass of flowers. 
Stake the Cincinnati Begonias; they want at least 55 deg. Do not 
keep the Cleveland Cherries too warm and never let them suffer 
for lack of water. 

It is a good time now to purchase a nice lot of Ericas. They can 
be carried along in a house of 45 deg. ; a few can be given a slightly 
warmer house if well advanced and wanted for December flowering. 
Carry the Chatelaine Begonias in a 55-deg. house. If you have any 
Buddleia asiatica in pots, plant them into the Carnation house on a 
bench. They are most useful when in flower during late December 
and January. 

Bouvardia Humboldtii is at its best now. Always place the 
cut flowers in water for from ten to twelve hours before offering them 
for sale. Watch out for new varieties of Chrysanthemums and place 
your order for such as look promising to you. Select your own 
stock plants and plant them in a frame, or in a deep flat where they 
can remain in a cool house till next February. Do not forget the 
labels on the flats. 

Sow Penstemon and grow it on in a cool house; this sowing will 
give you fine flowering plants for next Summer. Sow Schizanthus 
now for early March flowering, also Calendulas. If you can spare 
the room, by all means sow Sweet Peas to follow 'Mums. A solid 
bed is far better for them than a raised bench. 

Make up a correct Ust of aU the bulbs you planted in flats, 
pans and pots, and look it over. If you are short on certain varie- 
ties, there is stiU time to obtain more. 



THINGS TO BE DONE IN NOVEMBER 69 

Bring in what Paperwhite flats you have outdoors in frames; they 
cannot stand freezing. The same holds good with the Freesias. 
Give the flats of Roman Hyacinths a Httle bottom heat if they are 
slow. You should see the buds by the end of this month in order 
to have them in flower by Christmas in a 50-deg. house in which 
they will be short and stocky and just right for dishes. 

Stock up with palms and ferns before it gets too cold. Bulb 
pans and low dishes are always used a great deal during the late 
Fall and Winter months. See to it that you have enough of them 
on hand. Get ready to plant Lilium giganteum and other Lilies 
such as auratum and rubrum, which wfll be here soon. 

Looking Ahead in Good Season 

Have you hfted a few Bleeding Hearts and variegated Funkias 
for Easter ? These should be lifted now, potted up and placed in a 
deep frame. Spiraea Vanhouttei, Lilacs, Snowball, Forsythia and 
others can be forced easily for early April. 

Are you pushing conifers for window boxes and vases? You 
should do so, and for the piu-pose secure a good supply of plants 
from your nurseryman. They can be heeled into a frame and easily 
kept in good shape. Keep on rooting Geraniums, Marguerites 
and other bedding stock. Half -ripened canes of climbing Roses cut 
in pieces containing about three eyes wiU root in a few weeks in a 
Carnation house in sand with a little bottom heat and can be car- 
ried along over Winter for planting out the following Spring. 

Be sure to plant a good number of Darwin Tulips in pans for 
next Mother's Day. Right now is the time to do this and this lot 
should be marked and kept separate from your other stock outside. 
Also plant a few thousand bulbs outdoors in 5-ft. beds, so you can 
cut flowers when your others in flats and pans are gone. 

Do not let the Cinerarias suffer for want of a shift; they are 
making their main growth now, and need room to spread. The 
Calceolarias also are getting busy and, like the Cinerarias, need a 
cool, airy house. 

The Primula malacoides do not need a house over 48 deg. ; the 
larger ones want liberal sized pots. 



DECEMBER 

Cultural Notes for Midwinter 

E are entering into dark weather and steady firing has to be 
depended on in order to maintain a desired degree of tem- 
perature. What is foremost with us this month is Christmas. At 
the beginning of the month things may be slow in regard to business 
but the rush is bound to come. While you want to be able to cut 
every Carnation possible and, with the high prices prevailing around 



W 



70 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 18. — PoiNSBTTiAS IN DECEMBER. By planting them out on benches in a house 
by themselves we can obtain the best results with these favorite Christmas plants 



the holidays get all you can out of them, it is a great mistake to 
subject the plants to a hothouse in order to obtain more flowers. 
Increase the temperature 3 or 4 deg. overnight and do not open the 
ventilators quite so soon on sunny days a week or so before Christ- 
mas, but let it go at that. 

The safest way, if you have a healthy lot of plants on hand, is 
to maintain the same temperature as the plants have been used to, 
cut what flowers you can for Christmas and be satisfied. You will 
be money ahead in the end. There will not be such a great drop in 
prices right after the holidays, while, on the other hand, plants 
which have been abused may require weeks in order to get into 
shape again. 

Feed the Poinsettias in pans a little and do not let them have 
ice-cold water Time your Paperwhites, Roman Hyacinths and 
Grand Soleil d'Or Narcissi just right. Often this means carrying 
them back and forth from hot to cold quarters, so much depends on 
weather conditions. A few flats grown along with other stock in the 
same bench make as much trouble as a whole house full would. 

If you have to purchase Cyclamen, Begonias or Poinsettias in 
pots and pans, do not wait until the last minute to have them 
delivered. One can never depend on the weather, and a few days 
in your own houses — as long as you can keep a temperature of 
55 deg. for the Cyclamen and 60 deg. for the others— will do the 
plants good. 



THINGS TO BE DONE IN DECEMBER 71 

Plant more Freesias now for late Spring flowering and grow 
them on in a cool house. 

Empty the propagating bench of all rooted cuttings and fill it 
up again, for if your stock plants — of Geraniums for instance — have 
a lot of cuttings on them large enough for the sand, it is waste of 
time to let them remain on the plants any longer. 

The Christmas and New Year's business will take up most of 
our time now. With the benches occupied with stock for these 
great days almost up to the end of the month, and busy as we are 
with the wreaths, greens, and the making up of baskets and center- 
pieces, there is not usually time for any great accomplishments in 
the way of refilling benches. But right after Christmas, if you have 
the bench space, such stock as Calendulas, Snapdragons, Lupines, 
Stocks and others may be planted out; a house below 50 deg. is 
sufficient for them. * 

None of these plants will make a great deal of headway for the 
next few weeks, but they wDl get ready for active growth and more 
than grow when the sun coaxes them on a couple of months from now. 

Starting Stock into Growth 

Bring in the first flats of Trumpet Major and Golden Spur 
Narcissi in early December, also La Reine Tulips. If you planted, 
any prepared Hyacinths last October and if the bulbs are thoroughly 
rooted, they can also be brought in and started slowly into growth. 
Cold storage Lily of the Valley can be planted in pots or 7-in. half- 
pots and placed in a frame over a bench with 75 deg. bottom heat. 
It wiU take approximately from twenty-two to twenty-five days 
(allowing a few days to harden the flowers off a little) to have the 
plants in bloom. 

Apply a good top dressing of manure and soil on the Asparagus 
benches, and the same in the case of the baskets. 

If you have Gannas under the Carnation benches, examine them 
to see if they are too wet or too dry; either is bad. The first Freesias 
will come into flower around Christmas; see to it that the plants are 
properly supported. Start the first batch of America Gladiolus 
in pots to be planted out later on. Place them below a bench in 
the Carnation house until they start to grow. Plant giganteum 
Lilies if you have not already done so. Take advantage of every 
day you can. The eariier you plant them the more time you can 
allow them to become weU rooted before you place them in heat. 
If you have Carnation sorts of which you Ayish to work up a good- 
sized stock, you can start to propagate now. There are usuaUy 
fine cuttings on the plants at this time of year which will root even 
without bottom heat. Protect your bulbs outdoors weU; they can 
stand frost but do not actually need it. 



n FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Late Bulb Purchases 

Sometimes, during early December, one can pick up a bargain 
in Dutch bulb stock which can be made to pay by late forcing or 
outdoor planting. But it is a mistake to put off the ordering of 
bulbs such as you need for your forcing demands. Waiting for such 
bargains in planting bulbs as late as December makes their forcing 
impossible for February, March, or early April; but you have good 
use for Tuhps and Narcissi after Easter, and if you can buy sound 
bulbs at a low price after you have your regular requirements all 
planted, it is well to consider doing so. 

If you intend forcing Valley during the next few months, stock 
up with pips now. They can easily be kept in fine shape in a cold- 
frame, and when well heeled in sand, a little frost won't hurt them. 
While you want cold storage pips right now for forcing, a little later 
the freshly imported ones will be just as good. In hardy Lilies you 
can now pot up Lilium magnificum, auratum, speciosum rubrum 
and album. The best way to handle them is to place the pots 
after a good watering below a bench in the Violet house. If you 
have a coldhouse with room to spare in it, the Hydrangeas and pot 
Roses should go there. The plants are better off if they don't 
freeze, and, with the Hydrangeas in particular, you want to be 
careful not to have the end buds get hurt through severe freezing. 
It will ruin the flower buds. For those who like to grow on palms 
from seed, this is a good time to get started ; but bear in mind that 
while it is interesting to grow on a Kentia, a Latania, or a Phoenix 
from seed and watch it develop into a beautiful specimen, you 
cannot ever expect to make money by doing this on a small scale. 
Heat and a moist house are the first things to be considered in palm 
culture — and a lot of time comes next. In the case of the average 
florist retailing his stock, that time can usually be devoted to some- 
thing else that will result in better returns. 





CHAPTER III 



THE RETAIL GROWER AND HIS EQUIPMENT 



THE RETAIL GROWER'S ESTABLISHMENT 

IN most cases the establishment of a retail grower in the smaller 
city or town consists of a range of one or more greenhouses, and 
a store in connection with it. This, if the estabhshment is not 
too far away from the center of business section of the town, is a 
great advantage, for in every instance where the store is separate 
from the greenhouses it means more overhead expense and more Or 
less waste. The little extra business due to the store being on the 
main street doesn't always pay for the additional expense involved, 
and those located a few blocks farther out yet on a good street, by 
being able to do everything under one roof, are the gainers. 

Selecting a Building Site 

For those wanting to start into business, location is the first 
thing to consider. If you can obtain reasonably a lot, with say, 
100 ft. of frontage and 150 ft. deep (one on a corner or with an alley 
to be preferred), there is no Umit to the amount of business you can 
and should do later on when once estabhshed. If it is found neces- 
sary to acquire more space for houses, or more land, a few acres can 
be bought farther out — perhaps enough to grow hardy stock and 
start a small nursery. Never buy a lot without a future to it, no 
matter how cheap it is. A town may grow and spread out in an 
entirely different direction from that predicted by the leading real 
estate men, but if you are on a good street just a few blocks away 
from where things are alive, you cannot go very wrong. Quite a 



74 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



number of florists comfortably fixed today made their money, not 
in flowers, but in the land they bought with no idea that it would 
ever become so valuable. But we don't all live that long. 

For the retail grower a lot facing north is best. This will give 
him a chance to locate the store and the palm house, fern house, or 
show house (none of which requires afternoon sun) along the street 
and the growing houses where they will get the morning sun. Three 
hours of morning sun is worth six in the afternoon. Of course, 
no one wiU select land surrounded by large trees or buildings, and 
if in later years buildings become so large and high that they take 
the sun away from the Geraniums, the place has most hkely become 
too valuable to grow Geraniums on; it is then time to sell and move. 

The man who wants to start but has only a limited amount of 
money and cannot afford to buy a lot 100 ft. x 150 ft. or 200 ft. with- 
out moving out where he can only be reached by the R. F. D., had 
better purchase a 50 ft. x 100 ft. plot nearer the pulse of hfe of the 
community. You can build a very attractive store and show house 
on a 50-ft. front and have room for a driveway and a good plant 
house in the rear. It would simply mean that you would have to 
purchase more of the stock you sell — which a lot of the most success- 
ful men do today anyway, making more money by so doing than if 
they tried to grow it on themselves. You may be a good grower if 
given a chance to grow stock with proper facilities and with nothing 
else to do, but the retail grower of today is an awfully busy man. 
The time he can devote to the potting bench or in the Rose house is 
limited. Here it is truly a case where the man who uses the hammer 
isn't the one who makes the money. 




fRONT ELEVATION 



Fig. 19. — A Practical Establishment of Three Houses and Store. See 
opposite page for description and page 76 for a partial plan of this convenient 
layout designed by the Lord & Burnham Go. Note its compact arrangement 
and the splendid opportunity for a striking display in the shop windows and 
in front of the two greenhouses at the left. 



THE RETAIL GROWER'S ESTABLISHMENT 75: 

The time devoted to keeping up your own appearance and that 
of the store and the show house, counts for far more than that em- 
ployed in pulling weeds. There are times when one may buy one or 
two lots and by paying a small sum, obtain an option on another lot 
next to his own for a year or so. Never let a chance like that go by. 
Buy only a small piece, and take an option on more. In the mean- 
time, make the best use of what is your own, and by the time you 
near the end of the option you will know whether you want to take 
advantage of it or not. 

Manf have failed because they started out on too big a scale; 
they couldn't carry the load long enough. There is nothing in the 
statement that "almost any piece of property is good enough if the 
right man is on it." It takes the right man on the right piece of 
property in order to succeed, and of the two the poor man on a 
good piece stands a better chance than the good man on a poor piece. 
To sum up, get near to where others are doing business ; face north, 
if you have your choice; and don't buy too much. 

Two Establishments for Small Retail Growers 

The accompanying illustrations (Figs. 19 and 20), show the 
ground plan, front elevation and cross section of three houses and 
store designed by the Lord & Burnham Co., and give a splendid 
idea of what can be done on a 100 ft. x 150 ft. lot. This would 
make an attractive and useful layout which any retail grower 
could be proud to possess and do business in. It comprises a good- 
sized store with office, workroom, cool room and neat, pleasing 
front; a boiler room in the basement; connecting with the store, 
three modern, uptodate houses, fit for almost anything you might 
want to grow under glass; and, next to the store, an open space for 
a show house to be added some day, but at present well suited for 
a fittle formal display garden. 

To erect such an establishment one ought to have a capital of 
about $10,000 — or know where to get it. But what you really 
need far more than the land to build on, is a thorough knowledge 
of what you are about to undertake, and of the business itself. 
The three absolute essentials are : A conviction that there is a demand 
for a florist (or another one) in the town; a wiU that you are going to 
succeed and ignorance of the word failure ; and about $3000 in cash. 
I realize that the builder won't agree with me on that point, but I 
would put my money even on a man w:ith only half that amount if 
he had all the other qualifications. Everything depends on the man 
himself. I could name one hundred men who are weU known florists 
today, who have made names for themselves as good growers and 
been successful in business who didn't have $500 when they started 
nor a layout like this to start with. Perhaps you know of some 
with better lavouts and lots of money who have failed. 



REEN 



:ia'-8")(liX}'-0" 



HOUSE 



76 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

You may say that there is no use in showing illustrations of a 
place requiring $10,000 capital, but there is. The writer for one, 

would have been awfully glad 
had he, at the time he started, 
had such a plan, which repre- 
sents the last word in construc- 
tion and arrangement. If this 
layout happens to meet with 
your approval, but if you 
haven't got the money to erect 
it, why not erect what you can 
to start with and then keep on 
going? You could build the 
store and just a little plant 
house back of it at first. To 
my mind the store with a neat 
front is the most important 
part to consider first, even if it 
means that only a 10-ft. wide 
sash house can be hung onto 
the back of it. Abihty to show 
stock comes first and always 
with the retail grower. If, to 
your mind, it is of more impor- 
tance to grow stock for the local 
demand, let the store go and 
erect one of the houses first, 
just as they are planned, with 
the idea of a store to come later 
on. If you cannot erect one 
house its entire length, put up 
half of it, but have the whole 
plan in mind and work accord- 
ing to it. A good many ex- 
pensive mistakes could be a- 
I voided by the beginner had he 
a definite plan to work by in- 
stead of erecting a house or 
several houses any old way only 
to tear them down in a few 
years to make room for good 
*1 ones. 

The other illustration (Fig. 
21) from the Foley Greenhouse 
Mfg. Co., gives a good idea of 
how to lay out a 100-ft. long 



C 



omi 




C OAL ROOMl 



WORK ROOM 
—SINK 



STORE 



^ L 



Fig. 20. — ^Economical Use of Space on 
A 100 X 150 FT. Lot. This is the right- 
hand half of the layout shown in Fig. 19, 
all three houses being alike. Note the 
fine space (30 x 66 ft.) for a show ground 
in front of the houses and beside the store 



THE RETAIL GROWER'S ESTARLISHMENT 



77 







2 Q 



■ru6 



78 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

north frontage. If this should happen to face a street with a 20-ft.wide 
parkway (as is apt to be the case in the Middle Western and Western 
parts of the country) an attractive drive approach is possible. The 
100-ft. front is divided into five equal parts, each 20x24 ft., namely: 
The potting room with boiler room and coal cellar below; a palm or 
show house; a store; a fern or another show house, and a workroom 
and private office. Houses for growing stock can be built on, running 
either north and south or east and west; but were it desirable,' one 
could conduct a mighty fine retail business'in the first section alone. 
Or, if a man wanted to, he could build just a portion of that section 
to begin with. The store part might be shingled or have frosted glass 
in the top. The front elevation of the workroom and potting room 
might be brought up higher and a flat roof used. If the lot has just 
100 ft. frontage and the whole of this is used, it should be located 
on a corner or have a driveway or alley in the rear. That much is 
certain. 

With this layout one could create a very attractive front, and 
one not only attractive, but convenient too. The potting room is 
nicely located and away from view. The workroom at the other end 
is used mainly for making up floral designs, and for storing paper, 
boxes and other material. In these instances, as well as in the 
others, it isn't claimed that such an arrangement wiU suit all pur- 
poses. But a good part of it might be adapted ; or the study of the 
plans may lead to other useful ideas. There wouldn't be much 
diflference in cost if this section with a couple of more houses were 
erected. 

THE SHOW GROUND 

The show ground is as important to the florist in the country as the 
show window is to the flower shop in the city. The name doesn't 
apply only to a five-acre display, for a 50-ft. lot can often be transformed 
into an attractive show ground and made beautiful with no outlay 
worth mentioning for the stock required. 

PRACTICALLY every florist located out of town has a piece of 
-■- land in connection with his greenhouses. Usually such land is 
not only near the greenhouses, but actually part of them, facing 
on a street or highway, and affording a splendid opportunity as a 
place in which to set out stock plants of Geraniums, Cannas, etc., so 
as to create a reed display. 

The Formal Show Ground 

Why plant any old way just so as to get the stock outdoors 
when, with very little more work, you can lay out a piece of ground 
in beds and sod paths in a sort of formal garden and thereby trans- 
form that piece of your garden or field into a show ground ? 



THE SHOW GROUND 



79 




Fig. 22. — YouB Own Home Grounds. If you are located in the country where 

things are usually less crowded than in or siround the larger cities, you cannot do 

better than to set an example of how home grounds should be laid out and kept 

up. They Eire always a good advertisement for your business 



Don't be afraid of tackling the job; you can do it easily if you 
want to. Get your four corners and then put a stake in the middle or 
center of the square or oblong as the case may be. From it locate 
your beds using a good line, a tape measure, a few stakes and a 
hand axe to drive them with. If this is all new to you, start out by 
drawing a 6- or 8-ft. circle with the line for the center bed and placing 
stakes every 2 or 3 ft along that line. Another row of stakes 3 or 
4 ft. away from the first stakes and parallel with them marks the outer 
edge of a sod or gravel path. Another row, 3 or 4 ft. away, will be 
the inside limit of a flower border running parallel to the walk, which, 
again, is followed by a sod path and so on. 

Or a sod path may be laid out by stretching a line so as to divide 
the whole square into four equal parts, the line forming the center of 
a path running from the center bed to the outside of the plat. 
Each of the four smaUer squares can then be laid out in straight 
beds or other shapes— anyway to obtain a good layout, and give 
an attractive setting. If you haven't enough Cannas, Geraniums, 
Petunias or Salvias, with Coleus or Mme. Salleroi Geranium bor- 
ders, make use of annuals. After you have looked at the layout all 
Summer, you may want to change it for another year. Maybe that 
Fall you will even want to plant part of it to Spring-flowering bulbs, 
Pansies, Forget-me-nots, and English Daisies. You may still further 
improve your layout with a sundial, gazing globe, concrete benches, 
fountain, arches, pergolas. Rose trellises or other garden furniture. 



80 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

What better ad could you have than such a show ground, or 
what better setting for a "Say it with Flowers" sign? Such signs 
don't belong on the side of stables or barns, where we see them some- 
times displayed, or in an empty lot with weeds of every description 
growing all around them. How much more impressive and attractive 
with a background of conifers or evergreens and a foreground of 
flowers! 

Making Use of Hardy Stock 

Though it is important for the florist to have a show ground, 
it is stiU more so for those who handle hardy stock and do landscape 
work. Here a formal layout isn't as appropriate as an open sweep 
of lawn, with perhaps a small fountain or sundial in the center and 
the lawn running into an irregular perennial border with a back- 
ground of shrubs and conifers. This does not mean that a small 
formal garden may not be used to advantage when surrounded by 
irregular borders of hardy stock, with at least three sides giving 
an open view from the street. A perennial or hardy plant border, 
even one of shrubs, usually looks best when a sweep of open lawn 
leads to it. These irregular borders don't need to be filled with 
perennials alone. Annuals may be used to great advantage in con- 
nection with them as long as you obtain a show, for that is the object 
sought. 

Again, there are occasions when it isn't always possible to obtain 
an ideal piece of land to be used for a show ground. In such a case 
even a narrow strip of ground or sometimes a parkway wiU be all 
that is avaUable. But even here, with just a Uttle figuring and 
planning, an attractive showing can be made. You owe it to your 
business to help make this possible. You should have on hand a fair 
sample of what can be done with flowers and plants for the beautifi- 
cation of the home ground. You should be able to have a display 
of Geraniums, Cannas, Begonias and other bedding stock for the 
passerby to admire. Nothing will help you more to take orders, 
or do more to make people appreciate flowers, or to create a wish 
to possess the plants in their homes and on their grounds than the 
chance to admire them as displayed to best advantage by you. 



THE RETAIL GROWER'S BENCHES 



I 



WISH I were able to recommend to the retail grower something 
in the way of a bench to replace wood, of a more permanent 
nature, and not too expensive, but I cannot. 

A lot of concrete benches built during the past ten years have 
since been replaced with wood, with the exception, perhaps, of the 
legs, which, when made of concrete and heavy enough, will remain 
forever; but a thin layer of concrete, even reinforced, for the hot- 



THE RETAIL GROWER'S BENCHES 



81 




Fig. 24. — ^Well-made Benches and Beds. Concrete successfully used in one of 

the Begonia houses of J. A. Peterson, Westwood, Cincinnati, O. Whether you 

use wood, concrete or tile in making your benches, build primsuily for convenience, 

durability, cleanliness and economy of space 



torn and sides of benches has as yet not proven satisfactory in every 
case and to answer all purposes. At present heavy Cypress lumber 
is considered the best even by the largest growers. This is not to say 
that there are not some good concrete benches, and other good ones 
made of tile, but they certainly have not been found practical enough 
to appeal to the great majority. 

For convenience, a bench 4 ft. in width is the best if you grow 
Roses, Carnations or Chrysanthemums. When a bench gets over 
5 ft. it is no longer practical for the growing of cut flowers. You 
cannot attend to the plants properly, nor will they dp as well. In 
depth a 6-in. board nailed on the side of the benches will answer for 
most plants grown. Instead of using tins or triangular pieces, 
of wood to be nailed on the inside to hold the sides in position, we 
make use of angle irons screwed to the crosspiece holding up the 
bottom of the bench, and to the sides, holding the sides in perfect 
shape, no matter what the weight of the soil inside of the bench. 

Every bench should be provided with proper drainage and at 
least a J^-in. space should be allowed between the bottom boards for 
that pm-pose. Laying the bottom boards lengthwise wiU make the 
removal of the soil when emptying the bench much easier. 



82 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Benches or Solid Beds 

With large houses and for certain crops such as will do as well 
on a solid bed as on a raised bench, it would be folly to erect ex- 
pensive benches. In small establishments this is different, and 
there is always good use for both. It is well to have a house with 
benches where mostly pot plants are carried, while in one where a 
crop of Chrysanthemums is grown, followed by, say. Snapdragons 
and this crop later on succeeded by Sweet Peas or Asters, it would 
be a waste of labor and material to build benches. Many successful 
growers don't change the soil in beds, any more than the gardener 
would in the beds outdoors; he simply spreads a layer of lime in 
Summer, and then adds a good dose of manure. The beds are dug 
over deeply, and perhaps left rough for a few days, and then are ready 
for the new crop. Some men don't know what failure means who 
practice this method year in, year out. This much is certain 
it means a lot less work in building, keeping in repair and filling and 
emptying the benches. And except perhaps during the dark. Mid- 
winter days, almost all plants do better in such beds than in a shallow 
bench. Some of the best Carnations I have ever seen were grown in 
soUd beds; the same with Chrysanthemums and Callas. 

However, for the retail grower, besides the fact that pot plants 
are better off on a bench than when placed on top of a soUd bed, 
still other advantages in having benches are: It will do away with 
having heating pipes hanging aU over the houses, along the gutter 
or purlin supports; it will provide bottom heat for cuttings to be 
rooted, or seeds and bulbs to be started into growth; and the space, 
or at least some of it, often can be used for the storing of plants not 
needing bench space; again, while not exactly the right place for pots, 
they can go under a bench. So, as already stated, I think any estab- 
lishment with three or more houses can use both the solid beds and 
the raised benches to advantage. 



THE PROPAGATING BENCH 

For general use a bench with 33^-in. sides, filled up to within 
i/^-in. of the top with clean, sharp sand will answer nicely for the 
retail grower to propagate his bedding stock, his Carnations and 
his Chrysanthemums in. 

While, as a rule, heating pipes located directly under the bottom 
of a bench planted with Carnations, Roses, Violets, or, for that 
matter, almost anything else, are anything but beneficial to the 
plants, due to such heat drying the soil or warming it up too much, 
bottom heat, when properly used, is a blessing for a number of 
purposes. 

Therefore, if possible, always have a few extra pipes provided 
with a shutoff about 1 ft. or so below the bottom of the bench. Bottom 



THE PROPAGATING BENCH 



83 




Fig. 25. — Inside an Ideai. Propagating House designed by and built for P. M. 
Koster, Bridgeton, N. J. Note the flat benches and sashes, the hanging sash sup- 
ports, the cloth bench screens and the slat screens outside the glass. No jetail 
grower will need such an elaborate house, but it has some good features that many 
could adapt to their needs 



heat is the thing that coaxes most cuttings to root quickly, and with 
most softwooded stock it is essential. For example, you can root a 
Coleus cutting in less than a week in warm sand, say of 70 deg. or 
a^Uttle over; but with a cold bottom the same cutting might stay a 
month without a sign of root, and would finally damp off. The 
results are practically the same with Heliotropes, Salvias or Fuchsias 
during the Winter or early Spring months. 

Just a little bottom heat for Carnation cuttings in January 
will root ninety-nine per cent of them; they don't want 70 deg., but 
should have about 10 deg. more than the temperature of the house 
the plants are in. Usually the smaller grower will root his cuttings 
in the Carnation house. 

Chrysanthemums also root more freely with just a httle bottom 
heat. When it comes to rooting Dracaenas, Ficus or Begonia Cin- 
cinnati, not only should you have sufficient bottom heat, but the 
lower part of the bench should be properly enclosed to keep a steady 
heat above 70 deg. In many establishments the grower will have 
this enclosure built in sections so as to take a section out whenever 
he wants to place bulb flats underneath for forcing. 

In order to maintain a certain temperature not only in the sand 
but also in the air surrounding the cuttings above the sand, a frame 



THE PROPAGATING BENCH 85 

from 6- to 8- or 10 in. in height, according to what you want it for, 
is built over the bench and provided with a sash or large pane of 
glass. Such a weU-constructed propagating frame is the proper thing 
for Ficus cuttings in pots, or the forcing of Valley. You can also use 
it for pot plants. 

Just as almost everything in the way of cjittings needs a httle 
bottom heat during dark Winter weather the same is true of seeds; 
if you want the greatest percentage of the seeds .to germinate quickly, 
apply bottom heat. But with most plants the minute they become 
seedlings you want to move them according to their requirements 
to either a cool- or a coldhouse. The return pipes of your hot water 
system are a blessing for your Salvia seed flats, but leave these just 
twenty-four hours under the dark bench after the plants are up, 
and you ruin them for good. 

Next to bottom heat, cleanUness is the most important thing. 
If the frame is constructed of wood, the oftener you change the sand 
the better. Don't keep on propagating all Winter in the same sand. 
Every time you root a batch of cuttings and remove them, no matter 
how careful you are, particles of decayed foliage or pieces of root 
wiU be left in the sand. These are likely, sooner or later, to cause 
trouble in the way of fungus or disease. Remove the sand every so 
often, wash the bench clean and apply a good i^jM^oliot whitewash 
after the boards are dry. COLLrttr Iv^ ^TATtL 



KP^IiniHfrOFFLflJlicuLriWf 



HOTBEDS •IW4ll£l)T4L''S(rriCflLTtlte 

No greenhouse affords more ideal growing £(MMm4oiUpf|9|^^|f^my^ 
stock diuing Spring than a hotbed. With a wMV946itPi#'7§ ^"^^ 
atmosphere, and near to the glass, eversrthing seems td tntivft and 
flourish. No retail grower's establishment is complete without a good 
number of sash-covered hotbeds. 

OOTBEDS like coldframes are of great value to the florist and 
'^ while, each year, the problem of obtaining suitable material with 
which to prepare a hotbed becomes more difficult to solve, those 
who have a chance to secure manure or leaves should do so and make 
use of hotbeds for growing a part of their stock. This is especially 
to be recommended to those growing on large quantities of bedding 
stock. 

Usually, frames which have been used for the overwintering of 
stock can, in early Spring, be made over into hotbeds. A layer of hot 
manure about 12 in. in thickness tamped down well and covered with 
3 or 4 in. of soil, provides an ideal place for almost anything in the 
way of bedding stock, from the middle of April on. 



86 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Hotbeds vs. the Greenhouse 

No greenhouse, no matter how well built, will grow better plants 
in the way of Alternantheras, Heliotropes, Begonias, Coleus, Ge- 
raniums, Fuchsias, etc. For the man with a Umited amount of glass 
in the form of greenhouses, hotbeds are almost a necessity during 
the Spring season. With enough of them on hand, he can devote 
some of his benches to cut flowers such as Snapdragons, Gladioh, 
double Cornflowers, Candytuft, Larkspurs, Stocks, double Fever- 
few, Lupines, Schizanthus and others; or he can hold on to several 
benches of Carnations which are producing a good crop of flowers 
instead of having to use these benches for bedding plants. 

Greenhouses cost money not only to build, but also to run; 
not only wiU coldframes and hotbeds frequently take their place, 
but also their cost and maintainance are comparatively little. 

It may be news to some to learn that dry leaves gathered in late 
FaU and piled up somewhere over Winter, wetted and packed down 




Fig. 27. — Shade Coldframes. Made, as illustrated here, out of laths and l-by2-iii. 

strips, shades for coldframes are of no small use to the florist. Such a combination 

affords ideal protection, especially for small stock outdoors 



HOTBEDS 87 

in a deep frame in late March, and covered with a layer of soil will 
make an excellent hotbed. While they will not heat up to as high a 
temperature as fresh horse manure, the heat will stay in them longer. 
Another good way is to use part leaves and part manure. 

Aside from the usefulness of a hotbed, one should take into 
consideration the fact that even though you have to pay a high price 
for manure, every bit of it will come in handy after you are through 
with the hotbed. You can mix it with your potting soil, or that 
which, you are going to use for the filling of benches. However, 
this, of course, is only a second consideration, the most important 
being the fact that a hotbed will give you reUef in early Spring 
when every inch of bench space is taken up and when stock is in 
need of a shift and more room. There are a lot of different soft- 
wooded plants that cannot be placed in a coldframe, hilt which in a 
hotbed, or one with just a little bottom heat, will do as well as on 
benches in a greenhouse, or better. This is the case with Goleus, 
Alternantheras and tuberous-rooted Begonias. In a frame you 
have a chance to harden the plants off a bit before you plant them 
out. Always plunge the pots half way, or better still up to their 
rims, into the soil as it helps retain the moisture in them. When you 
remove the plants later on, give each pot a twist a quarter way 
around, and it will come out clean, while if it is lifted out straight, 
some of the wet soil is apt to cHng to it. 



COLDFRAMES 

Build all the best and most modem greenhouses you can afford; they 
will help you produce good stock and save you money. But don't, on 
that account, overlook the great importance of coldframes. Every foot 
outdoors covered with coldframes is fully as valuable— especially to 
the retail grower— as bench space inside; in fact there are times when 
you can use the coldframes to even better advantage. 

'T'HE more it costs to erect a greenhouse, the more valuable cold- 
frames are, for it would be wrong to make use of bench room 
in a coldhouse when the plants could be just as well off in a coldframe 
leaving the bench to be used for another crop which couldn't be 
handled in a frame. 

With an apparently constant increase in the overhead expense 
of running a greenhouse, and the ever-increasing price of erecting a 
modern structure, it becomes more and more necessary to plan on 
getting the utmost out of an establishment. You can no longer 
afford, for instance, to overwinter a lot of Chrysanthemums in flats 
on a bench in a cool house, when they are just as well off — in fact, 
better off— in a coldframe; you might better be devoting the bench 
space to something which would bring in money at the same^Wme. 



88 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

COLDFRAMES IN FaLL AND WiNTER 

The retail grower, during Fall, can keep a lot of so-called stock 
plants and even a small stock of bedding plants in a coldframe until 
the early 'Mums are gone. He can start his Freesias in pots and 
keep them nicely in a frame until, perhaps, the end of October or 
early November, when he wants them for benching. Harrisii, 
candidum and formosum Lihes, instead of using up bench space 
needed for Hydrangeas, Azaleas, Rambler Roses or potted shrubs for 
early flowering, all can be kept in a frame until some crop is 
through flowering indoors, or until they are wanted for forcing. 

Plants of Delphinium, Shasta Daisy, Coreopsis, Aquilegia, 
Polyanthus Primula, Canterbury BeUs, Pansy, Enghsh Daisy, and 
Forget-me-not are better off kept in frames until wanted for Spring 
forcing under glass, than if kept in a coldhouse where they take 
up valuable room. 

Paperwhite Narcissi, Roman Hyacinths, Dutch Hyacinths and 
other bulb stock to be used for extra early forcing, all should be 
kept in a coldframe rather than outdoors, so they can be gotten at 
any time. A lot of Paperwhites, planted in flats and allowed to 
come along slowly, can be kept in a good frame up to December, 
a few flats being brought indoors as wanted. 

Again, we can use a coldframe for storing our cut Boxwood 
and Winterberries for Christmas; perennials potted up in late Fall 
are best kept in a coldframe; Roses for outdoor flowering to be sold 
during Spring in pots can be potted up and kept in frames, and 
many of your more tender perennials, which often suffer outdoors even 
when protected, overwinter nicely when heeled in in a frame and 
covered with glass sash. 

CoLDFRAMES IN SpHING 

If you have a limited glass area and are crowded up to the rim, 
it is a "grand and glorious feeling" to be able to empty a bench of 
2}4-xa. Carnations and place them in a coldframe by the end of 
March or early April, to empty the shelves of the Pansy flats and 
take them outdoors, and to get out the Sweet Peas and Gladioli 
in pots, so as to make room for other things which need a shift and 
more space. Beds of planted out candidum Lilies, Darwin TuUps 
or Narcissi can be hustled along quite a bit by placing frames and 
sash over them. Others in the bulb stock group can be held back or 
protected in frames with shade on top. 

A lot of seeds can be sown in a coldframe in early Spring, where 
with the protection of the glass, you can gain weeks over those sown 
out in the opert. Quite a number of annuals sown indoors can be 
transplanted into coldframes and wiU get along there as well as, if 
not better than inside. The same holds good with small perennials. 



COLDFRAMES 89 

You can also, by the first week in May or in some years earlier, 
bring out into a frame bedding stock such as Geraniums, Gannas, 
Salvias and others which don't need a hotbed — and thus make 
more room inside. 

Around Easter a coldframe is often the best place in which to 
keep the bulb stock you want for that date. You can keep it cool 
and shaded better than in the greenhouse; and, if need be, you can 
maintain a high temperature during the day time. 

GOLDFRAMES IN SuMMER 

Every coldframe you have can be used to good advantage even 
during Summer. For early use, you can plant out some of the 
GladioU started in pots indoors and get them into flower long before 
those planted outdoors ; or, if you merely plant the bulbs right in a 
frame during the latter part of March, you will get earher flowers. 

The same holds good with double Gornflower. Sow the seed, 
say, in early March and plant the seedUngs later on in a frame; 
or sow in the frame and let them flower there. Calendulas, annual 
Gypsophila, annual Larkspur, Salpiglossis, Zinnias and a lot of other 
useful cut flowers can be treated that way during Summer. Any 
frame not used for such pot stock as Roses, Solanums, Bougain- 
villeas, Gytisus, Ericas and others can be planted to annuals. 

In Fall, in a deep coldframe, you can protect a lot of Galen- 
dulas (sown in July) and keep on cutting from the plants away into 
November. The same holds good with the early outdoor flowering 
Chrysanthemums, which, if wanted for cut flowers, or naturally 
late flowering, are always better off protected with frames and sashes. 
Even most of the early Pompons that we grow under glass and that 
come into flower around the end of October can be grown nicely 
outdoors if protected in this manner. 

The Construction of Coldframes 

There are a dozen different ways of constructing coldframes: You 
can make them out of 1-in. Ifimber for temporary protection, or of 
any other dimensions up to those of a miniature equal-span green- 
house with 4-in. concrete waUs. Where a permanent frame is 
wanted, 2-in. planks are more used, perhaps, than anything else. 
Really all there is to it, is to plan on getting as tight a job as possible 
and having the standard 3 by 6 ft. sashes fit properly. The use of a 
12-in. plank for one side and an 8-in. one for the other wiU give you 
a good pitch. The heaviest sash with weU-puttied, double thick A 
glass is none too good; aU this helps to make a warm frame. 

If you divide your frames, place a 2 x 4 where the sashes coine 
together; it will not cast much shade, but will keep out cold and drip 



90 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

in case of rain. For a permanent frame, use good Cedar posts and 
always be sure that you have plenty of drainage. 

Often it is found advisable to construct frames which can be 
moved about and for such, 12-ft. planks are best. This length will 
give you room for four sashes. 

Every man should figure out for himself just what will meet his 
own requirements best and work accordingly. Those located in 
southern sections won't need as heavy frames as are necessary in 
the North; yet in either case the more substantially they are con- 
structed, the better. There isn't a retail grower anywhere who 
cannot use frames to good advantage, almost, one might say, nine 
months out of every twelve. 



THE SOIL 

The smaller and more delicate the roots of a plant, the finer and more 
mellow should be the soil you use for potting. Heavy roots usually 
like a strong or heavy soil, but in all cases, perfect drainage is es- 
sential in order to promote a healthy growth. Good soil and perfect 
drainage must go together if you want results. As long as you have 
perfect drainage, you can feed plants in poor soil, and have success, 
but the best soil without good drainage will soon become sour and 

useless. 

XpOR general purposes a soil on which you can grow a good crop 
-*- of Timothy, Clover or Red Top will do nicely. If it is heavy 
enough it will also grow good Roses and answer for your palms. 




Fig. 28. — ^A Canna Bed Bordered with Celosia and Golden Bbdder Goleus. 

Even though to some it appears a little too formal, a proper border aromid a Ganna 

bed is almost essentied to a proper finish or suitable setting 



THE SOIL 91 

Heavy soil is used for Roses principally because such soil is 
best suited to remain in the benches for two or more years; there is 
more body to it, and by mulching and feeding from time to time, 
one is able to replace the nutrient elements taken out by the plants! 
You might apply this principle also to the palms which do best for 
the longest period in a so-caUed heavy or strong soil. This is not to 
say that Roses and palms cannot be grown in a light soil, but experi- 
ence has taught us that a heavier soil is preferable. If it consists 
of loam, rather than clay, so much the better. 

Short-lived plants usually are most easily handled in lighter 
soil, yet a good, mellow loam with a liberal amount of well-decom- 
posed manure and sand suits almost everything. You can grow 
to perfection in such soil Cinerarias, Primulas, Cyclamen, Begonias, 
ferns and bedding stock of every description. 

A light and rather heavily manured soil is always apt to produce 
a rank growth, while a heavy soil makes for a short, stocky growth. 
As in the case of Geraniums, it gives you not only short-jointed 
plants, but also better flowers. 

The heavier the soil you use, the more particular you should be 
in* providing proper drainage. Whenever possible mix a liberal 
amount of sand with it. Without proper drainage the best kind of 
soil soon becomes worthless; with it, even a soil lacking in humus will 
grow fair stock if this is helped along a little with food from time 
to time. 



Success Without Soil Renewal 

It has been demonstrated that Roses in the same soil in benches 
can do well for three years and more, and that Carnations grown in 
the same soil in beds for five years and over have paid. AH that 
was done to the Roses was to apply from time to time a fresh mulch 
of manure on top; with the Carnations, each Spring or early Summer 
the young stock was planted in the same soil the old plants had 
come out of after a good dose of lime and manure had been spaded in. 

Soil in a solid bed, with good drainage below, doesn't seem to 
give out or wear out nearly as quickly as that in benches. This 
is easily accounted for, as with almost daily watering, a good deal 
of the humus or organic plant food is soon washed out. Many 
growers make use of every bit of the old soil that comes out of their 
Chrysanthemum or Carnation benches for their bedding stock. 
There isn't any reason for wasting such soil. 

Personally, I much prefer new soil for benching Chrysanthe- 
mums or Carnations, for I don't believe there is any fertilizer known 
today that wiU replace the food that is taken out of the soil by 
growing Carnations in it for eight months. That is the case with 



92 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

bench soil, but, on the other hand, such soil spread broadcast 
outdoors, and plowed under with the field soil, after a good crop of 
Clover or grass has been grown on it, will, the second year, be as 
good as any soil you can secure. 

I call ideal soil for benching that which you obtain by plowing 
up good sod about 6 or 8 in. deep and piling it up for three months 
or so. Three months isn't enough if the ground was dry when you 
plowed it, but if the soil and sod were fairly moist or received a good 
soaking as you piled them, except in the case of a very heavy sod, it 
will break up nicely after three months. Use the small lumps or 
pieces of sod in the bottom of the bench for drainage, and before 
bringing the soil in, mix with it one-third as much well-decomposed 
manure. Or the manure can be incorporated at the time you 
pile the sod. 

If such soil consists of rather heavy loam, or especially, if it 
appears somewhat like a clay in nature, you can mix with every six 
yards at one yard of sharp sand. This will give you about as ideal 
a soil for Carnations, 'Mums, and the general run of florist's stock 
as you can wish for. I call such a soil "Uve, sweet, full of plant 
food and fiber," and would much prefer it to that which has bepn 
piled up for two or three years. 

It is easy to say to a man: "You should have such and such a 
soil for certain things," but to always be able to get it is quite an- 
other matter. There are Cyclamens being grown in soft leafmold 
with rotted cow manure and sand, the mixture being finely sifted 
before it is used for potting, that are giving beautiful plants; and 
there are just as good plants being grown in heavy loam. This 
holds good with other stock as well. 



What a Good Soil Must Be 

What is of greatest importance, especially in pot culture, is a 
swieet, porous soil; the heavier its nature, the less you want to think 
about using a sieve. Finely sifted heavy soil will always pack more 
than that which contains small lumps and grass rootlets. Of course 
this doesn't mean not to work the soil over so as to have it fine enough 
to work or pot with. Also I wouldn't want to use such soil for small 
Begonia, Petunia or Primula seedlings. A lighter soil is better to 
work with and for such plants to grow in. 

It doesn't take a man long to find out what suits his stock biest, 
but in most cases a florist can obtain what he needs for ordinary 
purposes near his neighborhood. 

Soil to be avoided is such as lacks fiber and is mucky and sticky; 
this kind of soil will remind you of putty when in a moist state and 
moulded into a ball. You can grow certain things in such material 



THE SOIL 93 

outdoors, but you can do nothing with it under glass, no matter 
how much manure or sand you mix with it. 

Soil which you obtain from the compost heap will usually grow 
anything in the way of bedding stock. The man who has the space 
should save everything in the way of so-called sweepings, thrown 
out bulb flats, old plants, etc., etc. When left long enough in the 
compost heap or pile they will all come in useful some day. 

COMPOSTS 

In the modem slaughter house not a single thing is wasted, but exactly 
the opposite is true with the average florist. If we today ran our 
business the way we will some day, the only things we would actually 
have to find a dumping place for would be broken glass and clinkers 
—and both of these make excellent material in a concrete mixture. 

A GOOD sized space covered with a compost pile is a paying 
-^*- investment for every retail grower. Such a pile consists of, 
or is composed of, so-called wastes of the greenhouses, correspond- 
ing to what the slaughter house sells as tankage, which is simply a . 
mixture of waste scraps of meat, blood and bone. As this makes an 
excellent fertilizer, so can the compost pile be used to great ad- 
vantage. 

There is hardly a day in the year when the florist hasn't some- 
thing to throw out, if it is only the sweepings of the potting shed. 
Everything outside of coal ashes, clinkers, broken pots and glass — 
anything that in time will decay and turn into soil or help to create 
a porous soil — should go toward making up a compost pile. 




Fig. 29. — A Well-made Compost Pile. Good potting soil is necessary no matter 
what kind of stock you grow, and a fair-sized pile should always be on hand to 

draw from 



94 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

While the Rose or Carnation grower wouldn't want to use such 
soil for filling his benches, even he can use it to advantage for mulch- 
ing or top dressing. It is the retail grower, however, who can best 
use such soil for potting, especially for potting bedding stock. If 
only utilized by being mixed in with some other soil, it will afford a 
great saving. 

The compost pile should not be confused with the soil pile, 
put up for the filUng of benches for Roses, Chrysanthemums or 
Carnations. When making up such a soil pile you should know 
exactly what goes into it, and that it is suitable for the purpose for 
which you want it; a compost pile may contain everything. It is, 
for instance, the proper place to dump the cut-down flats of Paper- 
whites and Dutch bulb stock, all the pot plants either cut down or 
such as are left over and cannot be carried over, the old soil out of 
seed flats, the sand from the propagating bench, manure which has 
been used around the greenhouses, or between the hotbeds over 
Winter, leaves, sweepings of the houses and walks — any and every- 
thing which, as stated above, wiU go toward making a good com- 
post later on. If you wish to add some sod and soU from the 
field and some manure, so much the better, but the principal object 
should be to use material which, if not used up in this manner, would 
go to waste. It might even mean additional expense to dispose of it, 
whereas, if given time to turn into soil, it can be utilized to advantage. 

In starting a compost pile, a good way to do is first to select a 
place, high and dry and with sufficient room to get around with a 
wagon or truck in loading and unloading. The retail grower can 
well start a pile 6 or 8 ft. in width and make it 4 to 5 ft. high. Keep 
on adding at one end and give the part put down first a chance to 
decay. Forking or spading and turning the pile over wiU help 
matters. 

Even in a small establishment where a variety of stock is grown, 
where benches are fiUed and emptied every year and a lot of pot 
plants raised, it is surprising how much material can be gathered 
that is fit for the compost pile and which will, in time, become valu- 
able potting soil. We all know that it costs more and more each 
year if you have to buy such soil by the load — as many have to do. 



MANURES AND FERTILIZERS 

There is no subject in connection with the florist business more de- 
serving of consideration and careful study than that of fertilizers and 
other forms of plant food. 

T UCKY indeed is the florist who keeps a couple of cows, more or 

less, to supply him with the manure needed for his crops. I say 

lucky, for the reason that, if necessary, one can get along nicely with 



MANURES AND FERTILIZERS 95 

cow manure alone, and doesn't have to pay much attention to so- 
called commercial fertilizers or chemical salts as plant foods. With 
cow manxu-e on hand — whether fresh and used in liquid form, or 
well decomposed and mixed in with the soil in the benches or for 
potting — we hardly need spoil a single crop. 

Conditions, however, have changed and are changing rapidly, 
and it seems almost as if the automobile has not only done away with 
the horse, but had also driven the cows away from the neighborhood 
wherever a florist is located. There are really more cows in the 
country than ever, only they are distributed differently, and for the 
florist the cost of manure, if bought, is almost prohibitive. 

Gradually some of us are beginning to realize that we have to 
find substitutes with which to supply the essential plant foods, 
such as nitrogen, phosphoric acid and potash, one or the other of 
which — or all three — are usually lacking in most soils. 

We are beginning to realize that we are creeping in the dark 
as far as knowing the first thing about what the soil in our particular 
section lacks in essential plant food requirements. Nor do we 
intelligently go about applying fertilizer. We look upon a bag of 
2-12-1 fertihzer with suspicion, just because it doesn't look Hke a 
yard of manure, and we don't realize that the food values in that 
bag are far greater than what is actuaUy available in that yard of 
manure. Or we wiU use bonemeal, which contains a high per- 
centage of phosphoric acid when the sofl really is in need of potash; 
or we apply nitrogen in the shape of nitrate of soda when the soil is 
really in need of available phosphoric acid, and so on. Even those 
who do use fertilizers and salts to promote growth or flower develop- 
ment, far too often take the stand that because the dose applied 
hasn't killed the plants in the bench or made them look sick it na- 
turally must have done them a lot of good; whereas, if the truth 
were known, it was just money thrown away. 

Organic or Animal Manures 

I don't blame any man who can get all the cow and horse 
manure he wants and obtains good success with his methods of 
applying it, for sticking to what he may term "the safest way and 
the easiest." However, the number of florists finding it more diffi- 
cult to obtain manure is increasing greatly each year, and as there 
is no set rule to go by in applying fertilizer, it is surely of enough 
importance for every florist to try and get better acquainted with his 
own particular requirements. You cannot obtain satisfactory 
results by experimenting for just one season; it takes more than that, 
and each class of plants we grow requires different treatment. Even 
those who at present have aU the stable manure they need, often 
can use commercial fertilizers and chemical salts in connection 



96 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

with it to the greatest advantage. After all, we don't differ a great 
deal from the farmer, only that our farming is done under glass. 
In regard to obtaining better results with a crop and securing the 
highest possible yield from a given space, both have to depend to a 
large extent on the available plant food the soil contains. 

Bonemeal is, of all fertiHzers, the most used by the florist. Being 
slow to act and the actually available phosphoric acid being pro- 
duced only as it slowly decays, we hear of very little damage being 
done by it. The Rose grower has used bone for many years and 
finds it better than anything else for restoring that which the plants 
in the bench for several years have used up and that which has been 
washed out of the soil by constant watering. We find that mixing 
into the potting soil for our bedding stock about an 8-in. pot full 
of bonemeal to a barrowful of soil, will provide food for the plants in 
the small pots and make them do better than those which have no 
bone. 

Sheep manure we also are well acquainted with, but under glass 
don't use it too heavily, or as extensively as bonemeal. It acts 
quicker, but of course hasn't the lasting qualities of bone, being 
only a manure. 

The Carnation grower uses bone and sheep manure as a top 
dressing during the Winter months; the Sweet Pea grower, after his 




W twT^t ? ™' D^"VERY Gar. Here is indeed a "'nifty" delivery outfit. 
Just what make of car you use is of less importance than to have a neat body at- 
tractively pamted and always kept in good order 



MANURES AND FERTILIZERS 97 

plants have yielded their first crop, works in a fairly heavy layer of 
sheep manure and gets good afterresults. 

Horn shavings is next in importance to bonemeal and, Uke bone, 
represents valuable plant food in a highly concentrated form. 
For the final shift of the Geraniums there is nothing quite Uke a 
liberal dose of horn shavings; a 10-in. potful to a barrowful of soil 
will do a lot of good. For Chrysanthemums in light soil a Uberal 
amount of bonemeal and horn shavings is always to be recom- 
mended mixed with the soil after it is in the benches, but before the 
plants are set. And there is nothing better for Cinerarias. 

Chicken manure contains a lot of plant food, but it is far safer 
to use it outdoors than under glass as long as bone or -sheep manure 
are to be had — and usually they can be obtained. 

Horse manure, when well rotted (which is the only state in which 
it should be used under glass), doesn't differ greatly from cow ma- 
nure, but hasn't quite the same food value. If not appUed too 
heavily it will always be of benefit as a top dressing or for giving a 
bench a mulching, as well as mixed into the soil. There is one thing 
in favor of using manure, namely, in the case of a heavy soil outdoors 
a good layer of either horse or cow manure worked in will help 
to make it porous and on that account alone be of great benefit. 
This holds good also in benches containing heavy soU,. 

Tankage is getting to be quite popular with many growers. 
It derives its name from the fact that in the slaughter houses, pieces 
of bone waste, blood and scraps of meat are all dumped into huge 
tanks. They are cooked, the fats and grease are skiimmed off and 
the contents afterward dried. This naturally makes a good, all- 
round fertilizer and in the lack of stable manure is used today by 
many successful large growers. 

Blood in a dried state is one of the most valuable fertilizers. 
Containing a high percentage of nitrogen it is to be recoinmended 
whenever a stimulant is required. If you want to change the color 
of a starved Boston into a dark green, apply blood; and the same 
with Carnations in January. 

Wood Ashes and Lime 

Wood ashes are of great value. It stands to reason that they 
are bound to contain a lot of valuable plant food in one form or 
other, coming as they do from wood, which took years to develop, 
requiring and absorbing food during all those years, of which a lot 
is contained in mineral form in the ashes. Spreading wood ashes 
over land and plowing them under cannot help but be of benefit. 
For lightening a heavy soil outdoors there is nothing finer than coal 
ashes, which, however, contain practically no available plant food. 
They are much made use of in Europe, but here we waste them. 



98 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 31. — ^A Convenient Display Cooler. This is quite diilerent from the usual 

square, corner cooler found in many florist shops, but it should prove especially 

well adapted for the center of a store of medium size 

There is no better way to tell all about the value of lime than 
to quote from Wisconsin Bulletin No. 225 as follows: "Lime has 
a definite market value as a fertilizer only when purchased in the 
form of compounds like carbonates (limestone and marl), sulphate 
(land plaster), or as quicklime or slaked Ume. It should not be 
considered as a fertilizer, but as a soil corrective, having as it does a 
very important and beneficial action on acid soil and the living pro- 
cesses going on therein. It may also improve the mechanical proper- 
ties of such soil. 

"Applications of lime in the form of carbonates, quick lime, or 
slaked lime are necessary to correct soil acidity and will prove es- 



MANURES AND FERTILIZERS 99 

pecially beneficial in growing legumes such as Alfalfa or Clover, or 
in the raising of Sugar Beets." 

Nitrate of Soda 

Nitrate of soda, which we obtain from Chili, is a great stimulant. 
If you want to convince yourself of its value, take a flat of stunted 
Tomato seedhngs, dissolve a level tablespoonful of nitrate of soda 
in a five-gallon can of water and apply to the plants. Place another 
flat al^ngisde, but do not treat it and in just ten days you will notice 
the greatest difference. However, nitrate of soda is good only to 
develop and encourage leaf growth. If used during the growing period 
of Chrysanthemums or other plants, and used carefuUy, it is always 
beneficial, but you cannot be too careful and must feel your way. 
There is no better method of telling what is best for your soil than 
to start in with weak doses. This much, however, is certain, that 
by using fertilizers, you can increase the production of the soil. 
The result of eighteen years of experimental work done by the 
Ohio Experiment Station showed an increase of fourteen bushels of 
Wheat per acre, and thirty-one years' of experiments carried on by 
the Pennsylvania station, showed thirteen and six-tenths bushels 
increase per acre as the result of the use of fertilizer. 

All so-caUed commercial fertilizers are now sold under different 
state Hcenses, according to the amount of available nitrogen, phos- 
phoric acid and actual potash they contain. For example, a 2-10-6 
fertilizer contains 2 percent nitrogen, 10 per cent phosphoric acid, 
and 6 per cent potash. 

What Kind op Plant Food to Use 

The next, and perhaps most important matter, we arrive at is 
how are we to find out or know what is best to use for the crops we 
are growing? When do we know we are using the right kind of 
mixture to do our soil good, and when do we do more harm than 
good? Well, as far as has been found out, a safe rule to go by is 
this: Heavy sofls are usually richest in potash, but usually lack 
nitrogen as a stimulant to promote growth, and also are apt to be 
short on available phosphoric acid. Sandy soils are always benefited 
by heavy doses of tankage which will improve the sofl and give it 
more body. Whenever possible, stable manure should be apphed 
to such soil; it benefits it more than any other food. Black soils 
usually are benefited by a fertilizer sold as a 3-8-6 or 2-10-4 mixture. 

Next comes the question, how is one to ascertain exactly what a 
certain soil lacks in the way of plant food? I can answer this no 
better than by quoting an Indiana Agricultural Experiment Station 
report: "Soil analysis is of little value in showing fertilizer require- 
ments, for there is no chemical method known that will show reliably 



100 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

the availability of the plant food elements present in the soil." 
This means that in order to find out just what is best for your soil, 
you must conduct experiments yourself. Whether now or later on, 
the day is bound to come to most of us when we wiU have to do this 
—and the sooner we get at it, the better it will be. 

Fertilizer Experiments at Home 

As an example of how one can determine in a simple way just 
what benefits a certain soil, take, for instance, a bench of Carnations 
which up to December first has received no feeding of any sort, and 
is in a healthy condition. Say the bench is 4 ft. by 100 ft. Divide 
the length into six equal parts, and on the first, starting from one end 
put on a layer of tankage about M-in- in thickness; on the second put 
a layer — not quite so heavy — of bonemeal and sheep manure mixed; 
on the third, blood and bone; then skip one section. On the fifth, 
apply a layer of a 12-2 fertilizer; and on the sixth, or last, a 2-10-4 
mixture. Work them all into the soil and follow with a good water- 
ing. Of course you can divide into smaller spaces and use still other 
mixtures, so long as you have division lines and keep each plat 
properly labeled. Keep a careful record of the results. It isn't 
Ukely that you will hurt anything, and if inside of six weeks you 
notice no apparent change, you might apply a second dose of the 
same sort. Then in six weeks more you should be able to tell exactly 
what has benefited the plants most, though it may take a little 
longer. 

Another way is to use different fertilizers in the potting of plants 
and keep a record of their growth; still another is to' apply some of 
the plant foods to the compost pile. 

There are still some who cannot make themselves beheve that 
fertihzer can possibly be as good as manure. But each year more 
people have to get along with less and less manure and while it 
may seem foohsh to predict it, the day when plants, fruits, cereals, 
vegetables and flowers all will be grown to greater perfection than 
ever before, without animal manure or anything of the animal in 
the way of blood or bone, but merely chemicals and minerals scienti- 
fically prepared and apphed— yet this day may come, and for no 
other reason than that man will have no more use for animals. 





CHAPTER IV 

PRACTICAL OPERATIONS IN THE GROWING 
END OF THE BUSINESS 

GREENHOUSE HEATING 

THE heating of greenhouses is surely a most important subject, 
and although great improvements have taken place since we 
substituted hot water pipes for the old-time brick and tile 
flues, it seems to take as much coal as ever. Even firing with oil 
doesn't bring the cost down. 

The florist grower erecting a new range of houses today usually 
leaves the system of heating to the builder. All the best firms have 
expert men in charge of the heating end, and there is httle use tak- 
ing up time here for the discussion of the subject, as it couldn't be 
treated so as to apply to all sections of the country, nor could one 
go into it deeply enough. Still, for the beginner and the smaller 
established florist it may be of interest to mention a few things 
which, to my mind, are worth considering as they are the result of 
my observations and experience during more than forty winters 
spent in greenhouses. 

No matter what kind of boiler you use, what coal you burn, 
nor how large or small your establishment, always separate the 
greenhouses from the boiler pit. Many failures — with flowering pot 
plants in particular — have been traced to gases escaping from the 
boiler pit. For smaU estabhshments, hot water is always better 
than steam, as it doesn't need quite so much attention, which means a 
lot to the man who does not employ a regular fireman. Always get 
acquainted with the grade of coal you use; the cheapest is not always 
the best or the most economical, especiaUy when used with a small 
smokestack. 

If you figure on fourteen 2-in. pipes heating a certain sized house, 
put in six extra ones. More pipes and less heat in them gives you 
better results than to force your boiler and be obliged to keep the 
pipes red hot in order to keep frost out or maintain a certain tem- 
perature. 

101 



102 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

The farther you keep pipes away from the bottom or sides of 
benches the better for the plants in them. 

You can never have too many shutofT valves in your pipes. 
They will be appreciated in case of a breakdown, or if the pipes are 
not all required during a warm spell they can be partly cut out, to 
be turned on again when it gets cold. 

A too large boiler may eat up more coal than necessary, but you 
are out more money by having to f6rce a boiler that is too small. 
With most plants it isn't nearly as important just how hot or cold 
you keep them, as it is how evenly you can maintain the temperature 
they require. 

There is always a way to find out just what heating system, what 
kind of boiler, and the amount of piping one requires in order to 
maintain a certain temperature. The man who starts into business 
today makes a big mistake in going ahead without knowing just 
what he is doing. 



WATERING PLANTS INDOORS 

WATERING plants growing in pots or in a bench requires care- 
ful attention, for the plants are entirely dependent upon you 
for the right amount necessary to encourage a healthy growth. When 
out in the open the roots have a chance to go down into the soil 
and look for moisture if necessary, and they usually do it. You 
can lift a tender annual and find that its hair-like roots have grown 
right into a hard, rock-like clay soil and wonder how it was possible. 
That same plant in a 4-in. pot on a bench has no chance to do so. 
It is absolutely dependent on some one to supply the moisture ' 
necessary, as the roots are confined within the sides of the little 
pot. And the same almost holds good with the plants in a bench 
with only four or five inches of soil. 

Now with most plants grown by the average retail grower it 
is just a matter of keeping the soil fairly moist at all times and 
when applying the water of disturbing the plants as little as possible. 
Just how to do this, one has to find out for himself. You can show 
a man how to hold the hose, how to place the forefinger over the 
opening, how to move himself and the arm that holds the hose so 
as to distribute the water evenly, instead of squirting it twenty 
feet from where he stands. But in order to do all this rightly the 
man has to learn through experience. 

You can tell when a bench of Carnations is in want of water 
by examining it. Get your fingers down into the soil and find out 
its exact condition; you cannot always tell by the appearance of 
the surface. Don't water soil that is wet nor ever let a lot of stock 
suffer in soil that is dry. To give soil in pots or in a bench a chance 



WATERING PLANTS INdOORS 



lo^ 



to dry out well every once in awhile is wrong. The plants suflFer 
every time you do it; you stunt their growth. Plants which have 
been grown under glass in pots or in a shallow bench with artificial 
watering are different from 
those in the open field and 
can't stand a dry soil with- 
out showing bad effects. 
On the other hand, if you 
have poor drainage and 
the water you apply re- 
mains in the soil too long, 
you will get the same bad 
effects. 

Take a Boston Fern. 
No plant loves water more 
and as long as you have 
plenty of drainage in the 
pot it can stand watering 
practically every day. But 
in a sour soil resulting 
from improper drainage, it 
will soon go. And this 
really holds good with all 
other plants. 

No man who does just 
a Uttle thinking for him- 
self wiU use the hose on a 
seed flat or pan or on smaU 
dehcate seedUngs. It is 
being done, of course, in 
some places, but the gar- 
dener who uses the water 
ing can is very apt to have 
better success. There are 
men who can hit a Gloxinia 
plant every time with the 
hose when ten feet away, 
but it won't be a Gloxinia 
long. With a little judg- 
ment and common sense, 
the man who wants to do 

the right thing for his ^ 32._VEr,TiLATioN Helps. What we expect 

plants won t be long m f jom a ventUating apparatus is that it will open 

finding out how best to all the ventilators evenly and with ease, and 

i rjM. u -11 when thev are closed, hold them tightly in 

water. The man who wiU ™ ^f4 ^^p^ g^owii does these thhigs and 

keep his elbow tight a- is considered one of the best on the market 




104 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

gainst his body when watering a bench never wiU make a gardener. 

Every plant when freshly transplanted or shifted should have 
a thorough watering. Only by so doing can you hope to settle the 
SOU eveiJy and firmly around the roots. The same thing should 
always be done when placing cuttings m a sand bed to be rooted. 
One good soaking is sufficient for many qmck-rootmg cuttmgs, 
and a fairly moist sand is usuaUy better than one that is too wet. 

The more firing that has to be done to keep the temperature 
UP in a house, the more attention you must pay to watering 
especiaUy when heating pipes are just below the bottom of a bench 
or close to its sides. Watering includes not only watering the 
plants themselves, but also the use of the hose as often as is necessary 
during the Winter months (or the Summer for that matter) m apply- 
ing water on the walks and below the benches in order to maintain 
a moist growing atmosphere. This is often necessary when a lot 
of heating pipes underneath the benches are drying things out. 
During a hot, dry Summer you are also Hable to have too dry an 
atmosphere prevailing. 

VENTILATING 

Unless a suitable atmosphere prevails in your houses, no matter how 
wet or dry you keep the soil, nor how high or low the temperature is, 
your stock will never do its best. To my mind the atmospheric condi- 
tions surrounding a plant under glass have far more to do with its 
success or failure than the soil it is planted in. 

ONE of the essentials in successfully handling plants under 
glass is to create and maintain a healthy growing atmos- 
phere; without such an atmosphere, there is bound to be trouble 
somewhere. 

We often hear of a man making use of the best kind of soil, 
providing perfect drainage, maintaining the proper temperature, 
and keeping his stock clean — and yet a certain crop simply will not 
do with him. In most t)f such cases one would have no trouble in 
tracing his failure to the lack of a proper atmosphere in his houses. 

One of the reasons the smaller grower, or the one who conducts 
a retail estabhshment, is not always successful with Roses, Carna- 
tions, Sweet Peas, Lilies or pot plants such as Begonias of the 
Cincinnati type, is that he has to handle the stock with fifty-seven 
other varieties all in one house, which means about the same tem- 
perature and atmosphere for all. On the other hand, the speciaUst 
in Roses, Cyclamens, LiUes or Carnations, devotes a solid house 
or several houses to each individual kind of plant and, through 
experience, has found out just how to run the houses and what 
kind of atmosphere best suits each class of stock. This is not to 



VENTILATING I05 

say that a number of different varieties of plants cannot be suc- 
cessfully grown in one house, but only that in order to grow them 
to the highest state of perfection — to grow "fancy stock" as the 
florist would call it — you want each by itself so you can study its 
requirements and provide as nearly ideal growing conditions for it as 
possible. 

Because a beginner happens to have so-called "good luck" — 
and, by the way, there is really no such thing — doesn't prove any- 
thing. You will always travel more safely with the experienced 
man, and it is the latter who wUl at once know what to do in case of 
trouble. 

The Importance of Moisture 

Perhaps no other plant better illustrates the part that the 
right kind of atmosphere plays in its development than the Cycla- 
men. We all know the type of grower from whom the Cyclamens 
receive no particular attention, but "jes' grow." He may have 
them in old houses where you must wear rubbers walking between 
the benches if you don't want to get your shoes covered with mud. 
That same grower is fuUy as successful with his Cinerarias and 
obconica Primulas. Again, you may notice the fellow with a brand 
new house where everything is uptodate and convenient with 
concrete walks and perfect ventilation and not a leak in the roof, 
whose Cylamens stand stiU, don't move at all. What is the trouble ? 
What is the cause of the dose of red spider and the sickly growth ? 
Simply this, the house is too dry; he hasn't the moisture in the 
atmosphere that the plants require in order to produce a healthy 
crop of fat leaves. It is not, necessarily, that he can't provide 
these conditions, but thus far he hasn't. His Cyclamens are in 
good soil and liberal sized pots and the soil is always kept moist; 
but the pots are sitting on a dry bench and it is dry below and 
on top. Such conditions may not do much harm during November 
when the plants are through growing and are ready to flower, but 
you can't grow them on that way. 

You can grOw good stock in an old house and better stock in 
a new one; but in either case you need a certain amount of moisture 
if you want to grow anything really well. 

Here is another illustration. Frequently we find cases where 
everything in an establishment does finely all through the Summer, 
but as soon as firing starts and the ventilators are shut down, there 
is trouble. Some of the causes for this are the following: A man 
may shut down his ventilators early in the afternoon in October 
in order to save coal and still maintain a certain degree of tempera- 
ture over night. When he enters the next morning there prevails 
in the house a cold, damp atmosphere — the worst thing in the world 
for Poinsettias, Roses, Chrysanthemums just opening up. Car- 



106 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

nations, or, in fact, almost anything. From the daily waterings 
given all Fall, there results an excess of moisture which, with 
ventilators shut down, will transform the greenhouse into a wet 
cellar over night, which a crack of air and a little fire would easily 
prevent. As bad, only the other way about, is to fire heavily and 
dry out the houses. The plants that have become used to moisture 
in the atmosphere— or at least many of them— will object to this. 
Wetting below the benches and the walks is usually necessary in 
maintaining a certain degree of moisture. Plants differ, of course, 
but watering the pots is not always enough. This, however, is 
not to say that you cannot overdo things in this connection. 



Ventilation and Disease Control 

With a well-ventilated house, you can, to a great extent, check 
stem rot in Carnations or hold in check mildew on Chrysanthemums. 
You are not bothered with mildew during Summer because the plants 
have more resistance and atmospheric conditions are not favorable 
to it. The man who wets the fohage of the Chrysanthemums late 
on an October day, invites trouble and the same in the case of 
Carnations. The closer we get to Winter, the more careful we have 
to be to avoid a stuffy atmosphere in the houses. While you 
must provide a certain amount of moisture, at the same time 
avoid wet foliage over night. The harder we fire the more im- 
portant a part the hose plays in preventing a dry house. Heat itself, 
whether from steam or hot water pipes, is heat pure and simple, 
but if this heat is allowed to dry everything out in a greenhouse, 
it will interfere with a healthy plant growth. 

Even in the houses kept at 50 or 40 deg. there should always 
be attention paid to the moisture of the atmosphere as well as that 
of the soil in which the plants are growing. 

In connection with the application of water, ventilation to a 
great degree controls the atmospheric conditions of a greenhouse. 
It also helps us to maintain under glass the desired temperature. 
Good ventilation is such as will permit a circulation of air in a 
house without letting cold draughts strike the plants. While some 
plants are not as particular as others nor as sensitive, any plant 
grown in a greenhouse and sheltered from the wind and weather to 
which outdoor stock is subjected, will feel sudden changes of tem- 
perature as well as of the air. It is of the greatest importance to 
prevent any such variations. 

The larger a house, the easier it is to ventilate it properly and 
the less chance there is of chilly air coming in contact with the 
plants. The smaller the house, the more attention should be given 
to opening and closing the ventilators. You cannot hope ever 



VENTILATION 



107 




Fig. 33. — Shading Cyclamen. Proper shading during the hot Summer months 
is an important feature of Cyclamen culture. Too much or too dense shade is 
worse than none at all. Just enough to prevent the plants from wilting is the 
thing and if, whatever method you use, you can remove it easily, so much the better 

to open or close up at any certain time of the day. It all depends 
on the weather conditions. 

Special Problems in the Fall 

At no other time of the year do the ventilators play as important 
a part as during Fall, when you gradually change from Summer to 
Winter conditions. That is when the eyes of the man in charge 
of the Rose or Poinsettia house should be open and his hand be 
on the wheel all day long. Many a dose of mildew on Roses could 
be avoided if the ventilators were watched more closely and the 
same with yeUow leaves on the Poinsettias or tender Begonias. 
Too many growers open their ventilators when the sun warms 
things up above a certain degree and leave them open until the 
sun goes down or even long after it has gone down, whereas they 
should have partly shut them or opened them up more and then 
shut them again several times during the day. Or, in the case 
of ventilators on both sides of the roof, the north ones should have 
been opened and the south ones closed, or vice versa, according to 
the shifting of the winds. There is no "best way" to have ventilators 
stationed, and it is impossible to say whether they should open at 
the top or at the bottom. A good way, however, is to have them 
on both sides of the ridge so you can open the ones best suited to 



108 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

the conditions on a windy day. Side ventilation is excellent, es- 
pecially during Summer or at times when you need all the ventila- 
tion you can get. The better ventilated your houses are, the better 
stock you can grow and it all sifts down to the question of "getting 
the maximum amount of circulation of air without exposing your 
plants to cold." 



T 



SHADING 

HERE is one thing we haven't as yet got to quite suit us and 
that is a method of shading that can be used for most purposes. 
Nor can we hope for much in this direction, as almost everything that 
needs shade while under glass needs a different kind. 

Each grower, almost, has a different way of supplying shade. 
With all of them, whitewashing the glass either lightly or heavily 
is found most suitable for certain crops. Cheesecloth on wires 
over the cutting bench, and shade frames made out of laths and 
1- by 2-in. strips for small houses or frames, still lead. Some growers 
use effectively whiting and oil for a more permanent mixture or 
frosted glass for palm houses. But you can't mention any one 
kind of shading that will do for all kinds of plants, or for any one 
class of plants at all times of the year. 

A Ught whitewash is easily applied to a roof with a sprayer and 
is almost as easily removed. That is what makes it a most desirable 
shade for the retail grower; if removed by a heavy rain, it is but 
Uttle trouble to put on another coat. 

Cuttings in the sand don't ever want to be kept dark, yet the 
sun must be kept away from them until they are rooted. Cheese- 
cloth or other lightweight cloth seems to do this to perfection, 
and if you can fasten small rings along the edge of the goods and 
stretch wires just over the bench or right under the glass, you will 
find this far better than laying papers over the cuttings, and 
having them fly all over. Few flowering plants need shade dur- 
ing Winter but bulb stock, of course, not only needs shade, but 
also should go into a cool place. Primula obconica is a plant that 
needs moderate shade to be at its best, but Cyclamen, Chinese Prim- 
ulas and Cinerarias don't need shade as long as proper ventilation 
is given. Any of these plants during Midsummer cannot stand fuU 
sunlight, but heavy shading would be just as wrong. Just enough 
shade to keep the foliage from wilting is the thing. 

Palms can stand a fair amount of shade practically aU the year 
around. Ferns Uke shade, but not so much as to produce a soft, 
weak growth. 

A little shade for small seedlings is nearly always of benefit, 
but with most flowering plants, it should be given only until the 
plants are hardened off a little. With the seedling small table 



SHADING 109 

ferns, sunlight need never strike them and they will be all the better 
for its absence. 

Roses, Carnations, Poinsettias and Chrysanthemums don't 
ever want shade while growing-in a bench, unless you want to shade 
the flowers a little to make them last longer or to get a better finish 
on them as you might with 'Mums for the exhibition table or Car- 
nations during a hot May. 

Just a little experience will soon teach a man when a plant is 
benefited by a little shade; when there is too httle shade; or when 
there is too much of it to do the stock good. 



SOIL DRAINAGE PRINCIPLES 

YJ^ITH the possible exception of aquatics, most everything the 
" florist grows needs drainage in order to do weU. We often 
overlook this fact in the case of plants requiring moisture, and have 
them go back on us. Even the greenhouse should be provided with 
proper drainage the same as the basement of a dweUing, and the 
heavier the subsoil, the more drainage is necessary in order to keep 
things sweet. A few 4-in. drain tiles, with a covering of cinders 
and provided with a proper outlet will in a short time pay many 
times over for the cost of installation. 

The solid beds in the greenhouse need drainage. You cannot 
water daily without having drainage to take the surplus moisture 
away. The more you water the more drainage becomes a necessity. 
I have seen many acres of orchard ruined by overirrigation which 
really wasn't due to irrigation at all, but rather to lack of drainage. 
The very same thing happens in the pot or in the garden on a smaller 
scale. Soil not properly drained causes sourness and the roots grow- 
ing in it will decay in time. 

Sour soil is Uke a sour stomach. Lime in one form or other 
may give relief, but it takes more than that to cure the trouble. 
In heavy soil in the field you can, during a hot spell, easily over- 
water and notice the stock going back in consequence, while other 
stock, not watered, but faithfuUy and persistently cultivated, 
will flourish. 

Water is a great blessing, but perfect drainage has to go with 
it. Always see to it that there is plenty of drainage in the bottom 
of the benches. Allow at least a J^-in. space between the boards 
and cover the bottom with a layer of long strawy manure or rotted 
sod before you put in the soil. 

When shifting plants from 2s or 23^s into larger pots, ii you 
make use of a heavy soil, it is always well to lay a small piece of 
broken pot, or several of them, archways over the hole in the bottom 
of the pot. This will insure better drainage, and the larger the 
pots you make use of, the more it is necessary. 



no FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 







SOIL DRAINAGE PRINCIPLES m 

In Chrysanthemum or Carnation benches, it is always a safe 
plan to examine the condition of the soil once in awhile. Instead 
of applying water all over the bench just because one spot is dry, 
find out first, in what condition the rest of it is, and water only 
such spots as dry out faster than the others. Find out the cause, 
it is most Ukely a lack of proper drainage. 

Yes, you can also have too much drainage. By not pressing the 
soil down firmly along the edges you may let a bench filled with 
rather heavy soil dry out to such an extent as to create cracks. 
Any water you apply will then run through these cracks or down 
the inside of the bench without doing much good. But there are 
many more times when we lack proper drainage for the promotion 
of healthy plant growth and good crops, both indoors and out. 

SEED SOWING 

yW^E will take this subject up quite fully in Part II under 
" Petunias, a class of plants in which not only is the seed ex- 
pensive (if you want the best) but in which the most dehcate of the 
seedhngs often have the largest and best flowers. 

When sowing any seed, it is always weU to take into considera- 
tion their size. This usually will indicate how deeply they should 
be covered, or, in the case of very small seed, whether covering is 
needed at all. Sometimes far better results can be obtained merely 
by gently pressing the seeds into a finely sifted surface and covering 
the pan or flat with shaded glass to keep the sofl moist until 
germination sets in. There is much seed wasted as the result of 
careless handUng, for which there reaUy is no good excuse ; and with 
seeds we sow under glass more trouble is due to too heavy covering 
than to anything else. 

THE ART OF POTTING 

'THE main thing about potting is to do it quickly. At least, 
'■ that holds good when many thousands of small plants are to be 
shifted into larger pots or potted up from the cutting bench. If there 
is ever any chEmce of becoming efiicient through actual practice, it is in 
potting. No matter how carefully you show the beginner what to 
do, how to hold the plant, how to put the soil around it and do the 
potting, only actual' experience can ever make him an efficient 
potter. If he is a young man and does enough of it, it may not be 
long before he wiU out-pot you and do it better. The writer has 
had that happen. 

I am sure there isn't nearly as much fuss made today about 
potting as there was years ago; yet just as good and even better 
Cyclamens are being produced at present and, after all, it is results 



112 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

that count. To begin with, the main things about potting are 
(1) to get the roots down; (2) to press the soil firmly around them; 
(3) to leave an even surface when the job is finished, with the plant 
in the center of the pot and the soil level a little below the edge 
of the pot. This would hold good with almost any rooted cutting 
taken from the sand bed or with seedlings, so long as you have the 
plants about as deep in the pots as they were in the sand or soil 
they came out of. Just which way suits you best in doing the actual 
work so as to do it in the shortest possible time and with the least 
exertion, so as to keep at it all day if necessary— that must be left 
entirely to yourself. 

I respect the man who takes pains in doing his work right; 
but if he is too slow it becomes painful to have him around. At 
least, that holds good when it comes to potting ordinary stock. 
With such, speed means almost everything — yet it isn't to be said 
that on that account poor potting has to be done. 

I have seen bedding stock turned out by men who had but 
little experience and some hardly any, men who had no one to show 
or tell them how to go about it, yet their plants were as good as any. 
Then again, we find men who have had many years of experience 
in the potting shed doing miserable work. 

I am sure that the beginner or the man who wants to find out 
just how to pot, will have no trouble in getting someone to show 
him. Or he can pay a visit to a large concern somewhere nearby, 
where potting and re-potting goes on every week day of the year. 

Drainage Essential in Potting 

For the benefit of those starting out, it may be well to state 
that you can never make a mistake by providing drainage when 
potting or shifting plants from one size pot to another. No matter 
what the stock consists of, proper drainage is, to my mind, the most 
important thing about growing any plant in a pot. It is provided 
usually by laying a piece of broken pot, with the hollow side down, 
over the hole in the bottom of the pot. In using small pots, a little 
charcoal or cinders may answer better. The heavier your soil, 
the more attention you should pay to proper drainage. 

It is an easy matter to apply water to a plant in need of it, 
but it is perdition when the surplus water can't get out of the pot. 
The effect will soon be noticed. 

The man who buys Begonias, Cyclamens, palms or, for that 
matter, anything else from the specialist, need have but Uttle 
trouble finding out the proper way to pot by looking at the 
surface of the soil in the pots he buys, and also below it. 

The firmer you pot, the better; yet more care is needed with 
the tender roots of a Begonia, Primula or Poinsettia, than when 



THE ART OF POTTING 113 

you shift Geraniums which thrive best in a heavy soil. A dormant 
Rose can stand all the pounding the pot will allow, as well as a 
heavy soil or loam, and the same pounding is in order in shifting a 
palm. But tender-rooted cuttings require a rather light sandy soil 
and more careful handling. 

Common sense is always a good thing to employ in potting. 

CROP ROTATION AND ITS RESULTS 

You cannot pay too much attention to crop rotation in greenhouse manage- 
ment. There, with the steady increase in cost of production, it becomes 
more necessary than ever to make every foot of space count. 

pOR the average retail grower, there are two principal crops that 
*■ can be produced in an establishment. The main one is Spring 
stock which, to a large extent, consists of bedding plants and all 
that goes with them. The other is the late Fall crop consisting of 
Chrysanthemums, Christmas plants and Carnations, all of which 
are out of the way again in time for the Spring stock. However, 
there are also catch or fill-in crops, which, if properly handled, will 
bring in returns without interfering much with the others. It is 
these that deserve careful planning. 

The object should be to avoid empty bench space and also to 
have the benches fUled with plants which either do not really require 
so much space or which don't bring in returns. For instance, you 
CEumot afford to have a cut-down bench of Chrysanthemums lie 
empty until wanted, two or three months afterward, for small 
Geraniums; nor should such a bench be filled with a crop that 
wUI be in the way of bedding plants later on. You cannot set down 
a rule suitable for all. In fact, there are hardly ever two esteibUsh- 
ments which could to best advantage be treated alike. It means 
that each grower must figure out a method best suited to the running 
of his own affairs; but we can, a;t least, suggest methods which will 
help to properly arrange matters. 

The Use of a Coldhouse 

Those who have sufficient bench space to avoid carrying a lot 
of stock below the benches are well off. The smaller retail grower, 
however, can often use the latter space to great advantage. Next 
of importance is a coldhouse where plants may be kept in a dormant 
state ready to follow a crop that is getting through in another house; 
or in which such stock as potted Roses, Hydrangeas and the like 
can be allowed to come along slowly and are better off than in 
warmer quarters. Frames outdoors with glass protection are of 
great value, especially in the Fall and early Spring, for the reason 
that you can keep there stock that does not require a bench, or 



114 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




CROP ROTATION 115 

hold plants there until the harvesting of another crop makes room 
inside. 

Both a coldhouse and frames are essential for the retail grower, 
no matter how small his establishment, if he wants to get the most 
out of it. With their help it is easier for him to figure out ways of 
keeping his house or houses which can be kept at 50 or 60 deg., 
busy all the time and thereby bringing in results. 

Getting Four Crops a Year 

As an example, let us take a bench of Geraniums, which by 
June is emptied. Chrysanthemums, consisting of early varieties, 
can be planted out of 23^s and will be out of the way by the first 
of November. These can be followed by Freesias, started in pots 
in August and kept up to that time, properly protected, in a cold- 
frame. These Freesias will flower starting toward the end of 
December and are ready to be thrown out by the end of January. 
It would hardly pay to keep them any longer for the sake of the 
few buds remaining. By that time another lot of Freesias,, giro wn 
on in a cool house from bulbs planted the first of November, can be 
planted out to flower in early March, after which you will want the 
bench for bedding plants. Or the bench, after the Chrysanthemums 
are through, may be planted with 4-in. pot plants of Snapdragon 
which have been kept in a frame. These Snapdragons won't be 
quite through by the time you give your Geraniums their final 
shift, but if you have good luck, they wiU have paid for themselves 
and you won't be justified in letting them take up any longer the 
space the Geraniums should have. 

Another way would be to empty the soil out of the bench when 
through with the Chrysanthemums and bring in flats of Paper- 
whites from the frames, Stevias in pots from the coldhouse. Cinerarias, 
Primulas, Freesias to be grown on and flowered in pots, formosum 
Lilies kept under the bench up to that time, or Geraniums which 
have been rooted during September and carried in a frame. 

Field-grown Carnations potted up in September into 5s and 
carried in a frame, can foUow early or even midseason Chrysanthe- 
mums and bring returns from the end of January up to the time you 
need the space. 

Pansies and Forget-me-nots are two useful flowers for the retail 
grower and might be planted on the bench after the Chrysanthemums 
where they will flower all Winter — not much before Christmas, but 
heavily during February and March. 

For those who plant Carnations. for Winter flowering and have 
to use the benches for bedding stock, the sooner the plants are 
benched after the first of July the better, for you want them to be 
well enough established by September to produce good sized flowers 



116 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

on large stems. These plants should have paid for themselves by 

March. 

Making the Most of Your Space 

For the man with limited space who needs every available 
foot for Spring stock, most of the so-called early Spring-flowering 
annuals come too late to make room. Calendulas, planted out from 
23/^s following Chrysanthemums, will be through by March and can 
be followed with GladioU started in pots. They can also follow the 
second crop of Freesias; or, if the Calendulas are grown in a solid 
bed, you can plant field-grown Delphiniums, Shasta Daisies, 
Coreopsis or Columbines to follow. Sweet Peas of the early Mid- 
winter flowering sorts can be grown on in pots from seed sown 
about the end of September, and planted in the emptied Chrysanthe- 
mum benches. Or Chrysanthemums of the late sorts, grown in 
soUd beds, can be followed by a sowing of Sweet Pea seed to flower 
in Spring; but only when you can spare the space. 

While you can grow only one thing at a time, and while most 
retail growers find it advantageous to grow on as many as possible 
of the bedding plants they require rather than to purchase them, 
it is easier, if you cannot grow both the cut flowers and the bedding 
stock you need, to buy the cut flowers. 

The smaUer an establishment, the greater the consideration that 
has to be given to crop rotation, how best to handle each one 
so as to take up bench space for the least possible time, so that one 
wiU not interfere with the other, etc. You have to plan weeks and 
months ahead, lay out your work, get ready the plants to follow up 
and keep the benches working full speed. We reahze that quite 
frequently things don't turn out the way we plan, conditions arise 
beyond our control which change everything, but we should figure 
even on that to some extent. We should be able without much 
trouble to make different arrangements so as to obtain the maxi- 
mum returns from the minimum space. 

FUMIGATING AND SPRAYING 

T F YOU are in need of a good article on plant diseases and how to 
* fight them, I cannot do better than refer you to Chapter 5 on 
Plant Enemies in "Plant Culture," by Geo. W. Oliver. What I want 
to caU attention to here, is mainly the necessity of keeping clean the 
houses, or the stoct in them,_by fumigating and spraying with nico- 
tine solutions. This is, to my mind, the most effective way to fight 
ordinary troubles and prevent the appearance of the green and white 
fly and the thrips among the general run of stock found in the 
retail grower's establishment. 

I don't wish to be understood to say that nicotine in one form 
or another will overcome all troubles, but let a plant once get in- 



FUMIGATING AND SPRAYING 



117 



fested with green fly or aphis and you will have it in the right condi- 
tion to get almost anything else going, for the insects stunt its 
growth and weaken it. I claim that stock in a greenhouse faithfully 
sprayed lightly once a week can be kept clean if it is clean when 
you start out. But this must be kept up. Let a Calceolaria, a 
Cineraria or a Carnation once get full of green fly and you will have 
real trouble in getting the plants clean again. It is not that this 
cannot be done, but why permit the condition in the first place? 

The good grower never allows green fly or aphis to appear. 
By so doing, he keeps other pests away. Consider just for a moment 
the loss of money due to crippled Carnation flowers where green fly 
has done its work. Isn't it a crime to permit it, when you have to 
depend on the doUars and cents you get out of the plants ? Yet each 
year a lot of growers will not pay proper attention to their stock in 
this respect. With each year spraying becomes more necessary, 
and the older the houses and the longer they have been in use the 
more so. If you fumigate rather than spray, the same is true. 
Light doses, but often, is the thing, rather than to start only when 
you see signs of trouble — and then maybe overdo it. 




Fig. 36. — Spraying. The good grower vrill everlastingly keep on fighting insects 

and plant diseases. He doesn't wait until there are signs of aphis, midge or green 

fly, but by spraying regularly once a week or so prevents their appearance 



118 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

What is as important as fumigating or spraying regularly is 
keeping the houses clean. Benches were never intended to carry rub- 
bish below them. They should be as clean underneath as they are 
on top. I realize that, with the retail grower, it is often necessary 
to use the space below for the storage of all sorts of things. Well, 
that cannot be helped, and the smaller the establishment, the more 
often it has to be practiced. But there is no good reason why 
there shouldn't be, every so often, a thorough house cleaning, 
especially of the corners. Keep things clean if you don't like bugs. 

Don't throw out cut-down Chrysanthemums and place potted 
plants right on top of the soil in the benches because you are so 
very busy. By so doing, you invite trouble. Clean out the soil 
first, scrub the bench, whitewash it and then use it again. Make 
up your mind that green fly and aphis are only the forerunners of 
other, more serious troubles. Where these two are permitted to 
eat off the family table, they invite others to come that soon eat 
you out of house and home. Keep them away and you will, at 
least to a large extent, keep the others away. For it shows you have 
your eyes open and are ready to nip anything in the bud before it 
has a chance to get the best of you. 

NOTES ON DISEASES OF PLANTS 

Keep on getting all the infonnation possible on diseases to which 

plants are subject but spend more time trying to avoid tiiem instead 

of waiting until you are obliged to fight them. At its best, a commercial 

greenhouse doesn't pay when turned into a hospital. 

T JSUALLY when softwooded plants, or such as you carry in the 
^-' greenhouses only for a few months, get sick to such an extent 
that they show bad effects of the illness in growth or flower, the best 
remedy is to fire them out and forget about them. 

Such treatment may perhaps appear too radical, yet I am con- 
vinced that in most cases it wiU be found far better than trying to 
nurse the plants back into health. 

I have yet to hear of a case in which a man had a sickly lot of 
Carnations in Midwinter— no matter what the cause of the trouble 
—nursed them along, got the plants back into good shape and made 
them pay by Spring. I don't say that it cannot be done, but I claim 
that m most instances one is better off throwing out his sick plants 
and fiUing his benches or beds with something else. 

Prevention More Important Than Cure 
In nine cases out of every ten, by the time a man finds out 
just what is wrong with his Cyclamen, Chrysanthemums, Ciner- 
arias, or Carnations, the plants really are worthless. Here, as with 
human troubles, you can often do more in preventing them from 



NOTES ON DISEASES OF PLANTS 119 

getting sick than in finding a cure afterward— or rather, finding a 
cure that will bring the plants back into a healthy growing condition 
quickly enough to make it worth while. 

Given clean houses, proper ventilation, the right kind of atmos- 
phere, temperature and watering, and regular spraying or fumigating 
to keep out aphis and green fly, you are well on the way toward 
healthy stock. 

The growers who let aphis and green fly get a foothold, always 
invite other troubles, and so does he who keeps the soil in the pots 
or benches too dry or too wet; whose steam or hot water pipes 
run too close to the benches; who maintains a temperature that 
is too high and sometimes, but not frequently, too low; who keeps 
a stuffy house or one in which, for some reason, the atmosphere 
is too dry. These, to my mind, are some of the principal causes of 
plants getting sick, and only through experience will one be enabled 
to know just what his crops require in order to do weU. 

Many of us know of instances where a beginner — often with 
little or no experience — has turned out a splendid lot of plants or cut 
flowers. One case in particular is fresh in my mind in which 
a man bought, in June, 300 Cyclamen out of 33^-in. pots. He 
offered them the following December in 6s in full bloom! They 
were wonderful plants, yet some of the pots were hardly three- 
quarters full of sofl, for the man had never potted much of anything 
before in his life. A few blocks away at a Cyclamen grower's estab- 
Ushment where the owner had been making this crop a specialty, 
there were, in December, almost 4000 plants as fine as you would 
want to see; but all of the buds dried up. None knew what the 
trouble was so we called it the Cyclamen mite. This you cannot 
see, but it was there somewhere — at least we thought it was. 

I don't want to be understood to say that scientifically prepared 
insecticides and fungicides are of no use, for I am firmly convinced 
they are a blessing. Each year we find out more about effective 
remedies with which to fight plant diseases. On the other hand, 
I claim that if by experience you find out what your plants need in 
the way of care and a proper environment in order to grow and 
thrive, and if you keep them clean with nicotine in one form or 
other, you wiU have gone a long way toward rendering it unnecessary 
to use other remedies in treating sick plants. 

THE WINTER PROTECTION OF HARDY PLANTS 

OARM is more often done by covering hardy stock too early 
■'or too heavily than by not covering it at all. 

If you are located in a section where severe Winter conditions 
make necessary the protection of perennials or biennials, it is always 
well to delay the covering until the ground is frozen. To pile manure. 



120 



FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 37. — ^The Flomst's Ideal Showground. Here is shown a rather elaborate 

outlay representing one comer of a formal garden. Its owner must feel well repaid, 

however, because every passerby stops to admire the charming setting 



WINTER PROTECTION OF HARDY PLANTS 121 

straw, or leaves on top of such plants as Foxgloves, Canterbury BeUs, 
Shasta Daisies, Coreopsis or others before the ground is frozen 
and while their tops are stiU in a growing condition, is to invite 
trouble. Not only are the tops of some plants likely to rot off before 
Spring, but there is much danger of field mice destroying those 
that don't suffer in that way. 

While it doesn't matter how heavily or how early you cover 
a Peony, a Phlox, or a hardy Aster, all plants that retain all or 
a part, of their fohage should be treated more carefully. Always 
avoid placing even well decomposed manure directly on top of such 
stock; it is too heavy. A light but thick covering to keep the sun, 
fight and raw winds away from the top of the plants is best. Always 
wait until regular Winter conditions have set in before you really 
cover. 

It isn't during November and December that much harm is 
usuaUy done. The plants not protected during the following three 
months suffer most. Under a few inches of snow from the end of 
November on up to the middle of March, almost anything in the 
perennial line wiU come out aU right. An open Winter without 
snow, even through the temperature does not go down as low as 
zero, with alternate freezing and thawing, is usually what makes 
the beds look sick in early Spring. Freezing itself doesn't do as 
much harm as the exposure of the plants to dry winds and changeable 
weather conditions. You don't keep Jack Frost out with a fight 
covering but rather render the plants less exposed to the weather 
and in the best possible dormant state until Spring. 

As soon as hard freezing sets in, apply the covering; be sure 
the surface of the ground is frozen first. If you use manure, shake 
the heavy part out with the fork as you go along; it is just the thing 
for between the plants. Then use the fighter part, that is, the 
straw in the manure to cover the plants themselves. The lighter 
and more airy this covering, the better; it doesn't hurt if it is six 
inches or more thick, if loose enough. Or you can apply a light dose 
first to be foUowed by another later on. Dry leaves make a good 
covering if held down by straw manure or brush. In the case of 
smaU transplanted seedfings such as Pansies or Myosotis, short 
pieces of brush laid over the plants first and filled in between with 
leaves make an ideal protection. 

In any case, when once the ground is frozen toward the end of 
November or early in Decemb'er, it is usually safe to start covering. 
In severe sections the more protection given during December and 
up to the end of February, the better; but by early March, if mild 
weatherprevails, you can begin to remove a part of the covering. Don't 
take it all off until actual growth begins. One can uncover plants 
too soon— but there is as much danger in leaving the covering on 



122 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

too long. You have no date to go by, but must examine things 
from time to time. Canterbury Bells and Foxgloves in particular 
are very sensitive, and at times a plant will come through the 
Winter in fine shape only to be ruined by a severe cold spell the 
latter part of March or early in April after all covering has been 
removed. 

It is always a good plan for those with a hmited amount of 
stock to heel in a certain number of their plants in a frame in late 
Fall, protecting them with dry leaves and later on with sashes in 
case stock in the open field is winterkilled. It is also well to sow 
each Winter seed of such species as Shasta Daisies, Gaillardias, 
Coreopsis and others, no matter how many old plants you have in 
the field. Keep on sowing more each year and get rid of the field 
clumps or plants. A GaiUardia, Daisy or Delphinium sown during 
January and carried in a cool house will bloom freely the first year. 




Fig. 38.— A Flobist's Show Ground of Thirty-five Years Ago. This is 
a view of the entrance to the establishment of the late Valentin Burgevin, 
Kmgston, N. Y., showing Mr. Burgevin and his two sons and successors, George 
(who lent the photograph) and David. This layout, he says was hardly 
typical of average conditions in those days, but it shows the result of skill, 
taste and progressiveness. 




CHAPTER V 

SIDE LINE POSSIBILITIES FOR THE RETAIL 

GROWER 

LANDSCAPE GARDENING— IS IT WORTH CONSIDERING? 

TO become an efficient landscape gardener takes years of 
study, hard work and experience; a coUege education should 
go with it, too. When I mention landscape gardening as a 
florist's side Une, I do not wish it to be understood that I claim 
to be myself an efficient landscape gardener, or hope ever to be one 
competent to compete with professional men in that line. But as 
a result of personal observation and experience in what a florist 
would term "outside work" extending over thirty-five years, I 
claim that there are a lot of opportunities awaiting every pro- 
gressive florist or retail grower in the smaller cities and towns, 
especially the suburban towns, to get acquainted with, and to do 
work pertaining to, the laying out of the small home grounds. Such 
work starts at the very beginning with the selection of the site for 
the residence and continues up to the time the grounds are com- 
pleted in every detafl. It will often include the excavation of the 
basement, draining, rough grading, the making of the lawn.i the 
planting of trees and shrubs, the building of a terrace, the laying 
out of a formal, a Rose, or a sunken garden, the building of pergolas, 
the construction of driveways and concrete walks, brick walks or 
walks made out of stones, the building of water gardens or Lily ponds, 
swimming pools, septic tanks, concrete curbing or gutters for a 
drive, the laying out of a perennial border, and everything pertaining 
to work on the home grounds. 

I realize fully that no one man is capable of doing all these 
things perfectly, who does them as a side line of his main business; 
or even of doing them as well as if done by the man who is 
devoting his entire time to it and always has. But there are only 
too often occasions when such a man can't be had; when there is 

123 



124 



FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




LANDSCAPE GARDENING OPPORTUNITIES 125 

none for mUes around. And all the time there are any number of neg- 
lected home grounds or such, as could with very little work be made 
much more attractive. Other grounds were laid out many years ago 
and are in need of being remodeled. Driveways of the old type, 
constructed of cinders with a Uttle top dressing of gravel, need to 
be made over. Or an owner may wish to have his grounds made to 
look like others he has seen elsewhere. 

Who but the local florist is the logical man to call upon to do 
such work in the absence of a professional landscape gardener? 
Particularly if that florist has his own grounds attractively laid out, 
as he should have. 

I claim that almost every florist, with just a httle experience 
and exercise of wiU power, is capable of becoming a practical and 
efficient man for such work, that is, on smaU grounds at least. 
And I am sure this subject is well worthy of consideration by every 
florist who conducts an establishment in a neighborhood where the 
average home is surrounded by from a few square yards of ground 
up to a one-acre lot or larger. 



A Gbeat Field and Future in Landscape Work 

There were great landscape gardeners before Napoleon's time, 
but even our country hasn't always been so wealthy that those other 
than the very rich could aiford to employ them. During the past 
thirty or forty years with people prosperous aU over the land, the 
desire came not only for a higher standard of living but also for 
better homes and home grounds. This created a demand for trees, 
shrubs and other hardy stock and for garden literature, all of which 
in turn helped to create a greater demand for more stock and 
men capable of laying out grounds, and others able to maintain 
them. With all that has been accomplished, it is still only the 
beginning and always wiU be. As long as the nation increases in 
population and new houses are being built, there is no end and can 
be none. No matter how many landscape gardeners may appear 
there will always be all kinds of opportunities for the local florist 
of a town to develop landscape gardening into a paying side line. 
There are today many examples of florists who. have been in the 
greenhouse business all their lives, but never made as much money 
as they have since they went into outside work. Most of them — 
the writer of these notes included— didn't know the first thing about 
it at first. They couldn't have named four different shrubs by their 
right names, or told what they were good for if you had paid 
them for it. 

I claim that you cannot learn landscape gardening out of the 
best book ever written by the best authority. You must start the 
same way that practically all great landscape gardeners started, 



126 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 40. — ^A View in a Rock Garden. The average florist, even though he does 
landscape work, isn't often called upon to lay out a rock garden. Yet this can he 
made a most attractive feature of even the small home grounds. We have a com- 
plete list of interesting as well as showy plants to select from in making one. (See 

Chapter VII, page 221.) 

that is, by practicing the profession, by doing the actual work with 
your eyes and mind open. It is only after you have started to do 
this that books are of value to you and then you cannot read too 
many good ones — not so much to find out how to do things, as to 
get the different ideas of efficient men, which will help you to formu- 
late your own. 

This much is certain: no grounds are ever finished. They are 
no more done or finished than when new work opens up, and this 
is especially true of the smaller ones. Large grounds or estates often 
require many years before they develop into the picture the land- 
scape artist had in mind when he laid out the place, while on the one- 
or two-hundred-foot lot the planting usually is done to create an 
immediate efi'ect. This, to an extent, is a bad feature, yet it is the 
spirit of the times. An owner wants his home built in a week and 
will often pay a premium to the contractor who can do it quickest. 
There are even cases in which the home hasn't a roof on it before 
the owner is ready to sell and build another one. The planting of 
the grounds in all such cases doesn't differ much. Big trees, large 
conifers, specimen shrubs. Lilacs to bloom the first season, anything 
to create an immediate effect. This usually means planting too 
close, or using overgrown stock or else in a short time a regular 
wilderness of what has been planted. Sometimes improper care of 



LANDSCAPE GARDENING OPPORTUNITIES 127 

what has been planted necessitates the replanting of the whole 
layout in a few years. Again the grounds may change hands and the 
new owner has everything ripped out and laid out differently, only 
to sell in turn, when all is done over again. All this means more 
work to be done — in fact, there is no end to it. 

Where the Greatest Opportunities Lie 

It has always been my experience that in localities where there 
is the greatest field for landscape gardeners and where no end of 
competent men have the laying out and planting of new grounds, 
there are the most and the greatest opportunities for work on those 
same grounds afterward, for the local florist ojr florists if they 
have established any reputation at all for being able to do work in 
that fine. The more planting there is done originaUy the more work 
there wiU be needed to take care of it, add new features, change 
things, replant, etc. 

The laying out of new grounds and their planting is, after aU, 
only the beginning. We will keep on building new homes and keep 
on seUing others and there isn't a city or town, no matter how well 
laid out nor how well the home grounds are planted, where there 
are not all kinds of opportunities for the local florist to get his full 
share and more of landscape work, if he goes after it. 

If you get plans from fifty different landscape gardeners for 
the layout of a small home ground, let us say 100 ft. by 150 ft. in 
size with a residence about 50 ft. from the sidewalk, you will most 
likely obtain fifty different ideas as to treating the property. Yet 
most of them will include the features treated in this chapter, all 
of which are necessary in order to obtain a harmonious setting and 
give character to the grounds. It is these things that you should 
have in mind whenever called upon to treat small grounds, and to 
quite an extent the treatment of larger grounds doesn't differ greatly. 
When a man once has practical experience in laying out small 
grounds, he wiU have no trouble in taking bigger jobs and growing 
with his work. It is right here that he can make good use of the 
ideas of others who have written books on the subject. 

Drainage Work and Grading 

Whenever I have to submit sketches, specifications and an 
estimate on the laying out of new work, which is usually about the 
time the residence nears completion, I take up the grading and 
drainage first, for these form the foundation of all the rest. Uusually 
the soil excavated from the basement is all needed to fill up to what 
is caUed the water table of the building, and from there help to form 
a gentle slope toward the lot lines. Wherever this can be done, it 
usually takes care of the surface drainage at the same time and does 



128 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

away with the necessity of installing a tile drain for which an outlet 
has to be provided. But if you do have to put in a drain, a 3-in. 
farm tile will carry a great amount of water. Don't lay it over 
2 ft. deep if you can help it and put a 6-in, cbvering of cinders over 
the tiles. If you have 75 or 100 ft. from the residence to the lot 
line, a slight dip or depression about half way will give a better 
effect than an uninterrupted, even fall all the way. Sometimes, 
with a surplus of soil on hand and the water table considerably 
higher than the surrounding level of the grounds, a 12- or 15-ft.- 
wide terrace may be suggested, if agreeable to the owner or the 
architect. By the way, always try to be on the right side of the 
architect; compliment him on the residence and obtain his ideas 
(and he usually has some of his own) on treating the planting of the 
grounds. 

Never spread excavated soil from a cellar or basement without 
first removing the top soil of the area to be covered. Then top dress 
with the good soil again later. If there happens to be a shortage of 
material with which to get a desired grade, it means that you must 
buy some, or in case a drive or walks are to be built, the excavated 
material from these might be figured on. 

As to estimating the cost of rough grading, if you have to hire a 
teamster to do it he can most likely figure the job for you. Or 
by keeping a correct record of the actual cost of everything when 
doing your first and second jobs you will be able to estimate fairly 
closely the cost of the third job you take up, and with very Httle 
figuring. In time you will find yourself able to walk over a place 
once and tell in three minutes what the grading job is worth. That, 
however, is not to say that it doesn't pay to be careful, nor that the 
grading on all jobs is alike. 



Laying Out Drives and Walks 

The driveway in small grounds is usually not a thing of beauty, 
for it takes practically 60 ft. to provide a turn-around or drive 
circle to accommodate a large machine. This is out of the question 
on a 100-ft. lot without cutting up the entire front, so we usually find 
a straight drive leading to the garage along which the car is backed 
out to the street. Or a square space for backing up and turning 
around may be provided directly in front of the garage. Still an- 
other way is to enter the grounds on one side of the lot, swing up to 
the front entrance of the residence with a graceful curve, and swing 
out again on the other side, with a stub end leading to the garage. 

In considering a driveway, always keep in mind, first, having 
it of practical use. Next avoid as much as possible the cutting up 
of the grounds. Then comes the construction. The most sensible 
solution is to use concrete; this is by far the most satisfactory way. 



WALKS AND DRIVES 



129 



For those demanding a cheap construction cinders with a top 
dressing of crushed stone and screenings can be suggested, but let's 
take up the concrete construction first. 

An 8-ft. wide driveway will answer in most cases, in fact, less 
width can be made to do, especially if it is a straight runway, as the 
base of the wheels take up only 5 ft. no matter how large the car 
may be. A 6-in. layer of cinders should form the foundation. These 
should be wetted, tamped and followed by a layer of concrete ranging 
from 6 in. deep in the center to about 4 or 5 in. at the sides. For a 
good mixture you should use three bags of cement to every yard of 
mixed stone or large gravel and coarse sand. The mixing can be 
done by hand, but a httle batch mixer is not expensive and does the 
mixing quicker, better and with less effort. 

Every 9 or 10 ft. have an expansion joint in the drive. If the 
owner objects to the cold, uninviting appearance of the concrete 
(to which objection I fully subscribe), leave the surface of the drive 
rough and when it is dried out, put on a coating of Tarvia X followed 
by a thin layer of roofing gravel or small granite chips. This will 
give you as fine a roadway as anybody can wish for, and what is 
best of all, a permanent one. In localities with a sandy, weU-drained 
subsoil, 3 in. of cinders well tamped can be made to do and 4 in. of 



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Fig. 41.^A Bmck Walk Bordered with Perennials. Stiff, cold concrete never 

made a reaUy inviting or attractive walk. How diflferent with one of brick, especially 

when there is a chance to border it with perennials, as in this case 



130 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

concrete will be sufficient. In a heavy soil you cannot provide too 
much drainage and, in addition to the cinders, it won't hurt to lay a 
3-in. tile drain 18 in. below the finished side grade of the drive filling 
the ditch up with cinders. 

You may want to hire a concrete man to do your first job, but 
there is no reason why in time your own men cannot do that work 
and also the resurfacing of old driveways with Tarvia and screenings. 
A tar heating outfit will soon pay for itself and as long as there are 
drives there will be work to do on them. You don't need all those 
things to start out with, but if you go on and find not only that there 
is good money in this kind of work, but that it is becoming interest- 
ing, as all constructive work is, you will soon get everything necessary 
in order to do efficient work, and do it with the least effort. 

Cinder and Crushed Stone Construction 

In order to hold up an automobile (and there is no use building 
a drive for anything less heavy today) you need at least a 4-in. layer 
of cinders and 6 or 7 in. of coarse stone with enough Umestone 
screenings to bind all of the interstices. After these are spread 
the whole should be flushed with water and rolled with a roller heavy 
enough to produce a firm and even surface. To be finished properly 
such a road should have a good coating of Tarvia and screenings. 
This wiU keep the water out, but, after all, the cost is not much less 
than that of a concrete one. 

The main walk leading from the street to the entrance of a 
residence is next in importance, and if laid out to run up straight 
from the street sidewalk, it usually means cutting the front lawn 
in half, which should never be done with a walk straight through the 
center of the lot. If a walk is wanted — and this is necessary in the 
case of the absence of a drive — suggest one with a long, graceful 
curve, but never with a reversed curve in the shape of a letter S. 
The walk should enter at one side, run for a little way almost at 
right angles to the street sidewalk and then curve gently toward the 
front entrance with a group of shrubs or conifers near the point 
where it starts to lead to the entrance. This planting should mask 
either end if viewed from the other. Never have such a walk so 
that you can see both ends of it at the same time. 

The Elements of a Lawn 

While the planting of trees and shrubs is, perhaps, next in order 
after the grading has been completed and the drive and walks have 
been located, we will take up the lawn for a few minutes for it comes 
next in importance and consideration. What would all the trees, 
shrubbery and flowers on a place amount to if there was no lawn as 
a background ? To my mind, a fine sweep of turf is of the very first 
importance. 



MAKING A LAWN 131 

An open sweep of lawn, no matter how large or how small the 
grounds, is needed to go with the home itself. Plant the shrubs as 
thickly as you want to along the outskirts of a lot, or at the front or 
rear, but have an open stretch of lawn somewhere. It helps give 
character to a place and supphes a proper setting for the planting 
you do. A lawn doesn't want to be dotted with trees and shrubs; 
it wants to be open. Get away from the big center bed of Geraniums 
or Cannas in the main lawn; you can find other places for them if 
you look around enough, but don't cut up a sweep of green turf. 
The smaller the grounds, the more the lawn means and the less one 
can afford to sacrifice it for other purposes. A shrubbery border, or 
one with flowers means nothing unless a lawn leads up to it. 

How TO Make a New Lawn 

The florist located in the country where almost everyone of his 
patrons has, at least a good-sized yard, wiU often be called upon 
to take charge of making a lawn and should know how best to go 
about and do it. Usually it is a paying proposition and leads to more 
business, such as the planting of shrubs, perennials or other stock. 

In order to obtain a good lawn, you should start out with well- 
drained and deeply worked over soil. These, to my mind, are the 
most essential requirements. You can ultimately establish a good 
turf on the stiffest clay, but it takes time, and this is true, to quite 
an extent of almost any lawn on heavy or fight soil. In most cases 
where a lawn has run out, it is usually the owner's fault, for it takes 
proper attention to keep a lawn in good order. 

I don't care how rough apiece of land may be or how stiff the 
clay from the basement or ceUar excavation of a new residence, with 
a fittle work and by handfing the soil at the right time, when it is 
not too wet nor too dry, you can not only obtain a fairly smooth 
surface, but also lay the foundations for a good lawn without going 
to a lot of expense as in top dressing the whole area with top soil, 
manure and sand. I do not mean to say that this would be wrong; 
if the owner wishes to go to this expense, well and good. However, 
you can get along nicely otherwise and stiU have success. 

The deeper you can work the surface over, the better for the 
roots of the grass and the better wiU the soil retain moisture during 
the hot Summer months. In heavy soil, after it has been plowed, 
foUow up with the disk or pulverizer and a polescraper or heavy 
planks to do the levefing. If you want to make an extra good job, go 
over it with the pulverizer again after levefing. FoUow with a good 
fertifizer consisting of blood and bone at the rate, say, of one and one- 
half tons per acre. Work this in with rakes and after the surface is 
all raked, sow the seed, either with a seeder or by hand. For ordinary 
purposes, as good a mixture as you can want will contain equal 



132 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 42. — ^The Indispensable Lawn. A good lawn is as essential as anything 
connected with the home grounds. No matter whether leirge or small, nor how 
fine the trees and shrubs, nor how well proportioned the foundation planting, 
nor how beautiful the flowers — if there isn't an open sweep of green sward the 
grounds will be lacking in attractiveness 

proportions of the best Kentucky Blue Grass and Red Top, with 
White Glover added at the rate of five or seven pounds per 100 pounds 
of grass seed. 

As to quantities required, I should never use less than 100 
pounds per acre. This is contrary to the average seed catalog or 
farmer's guide, but in the years I have used seed, I have never yet 
found a lawn that we made on which we put too much seed. Many 
times, on the other hand, after the grass was up, it required time, 
expensive labor, and a lot more seed to go over a lawn and reseed it— 
and perhaps repeat this a second time. The heavier the soil the more 
seed you need, and it costs less to use enough the first time and obtain 
a heavy stand of grass than to have to reseed, which cannot be done 
without loosening up the surface. 

The Cost of Lawn Making 

Now about the cost of making a lawn. This depends to a large 
extent on the amount of grading one has to do, as labor is what costs. 
One has also to take into consideration whether a place is open, so 
as to permit using a team to advantage, or whether because of a 
lot of trees, all hand work is required. It shouldn't take a man 
long to figure out approximately what it will cost for labor and ma- 



MAKING A LAWN 133 

terial and add fifteen per cent for extra expense. A man starting out 
to do such work should keep a correct record of every item; it is the 
only way to be able to estimate future jobs. 

For the benefit of the beginner the following is a sample of the 
specification we make use of here and which, we have found, appeals 
to the average customer wanting such work done. While not suit- 
able for all cases, it may come in handy. Such a specification, 
typed on 8x10 in. paper with a neat letter head will always make a 
good impression, even if your estimate is considerably higher than 
those submitted by others; it may land the order because it means 
more than a mere written estimate without detailed specifications. 

SPECIFICATION AND ESTIMATE FOR WORK TO BE DONE, AND 

MATERIAL TO BE FURNISHED FOR THE HOME GROUNDS OF . 

MR. D. BRUNDAGE 

AT 

HIGHLAND, ILLINOIS 

Lawn. 

(Work on lawn is to begin after building contractor has removed his materia), 
bricks, Imnber and rubbish). 

Area for lawn is to be graded so as toform a gentle slope from water table of 
residence toward lot lines, after which all is to be plowed, grubbed or spaded over 

deeply, is to be pulverized, and pounds of fertilizer consisting of blood 

and bone are to be worked into surface, which is to be raked and seeded with the 
best lawn grass seed at the rate of 100 pounds of seed per acre. All is then to be 
rolled lightly and covered with long, strawy manure (to keep surface moist while 
seed is sprouting and to prevent washing). As soon as the grass is up, the manure 
is to be removed, and all bare spots in lawn are to be reseeded free of charge by 
contractor. 

Cost Complete 

Eighty-five per cent of the amount is to be paid when first seeding is done and 
manure is spread; balance to be due when reseeding has been attended to, which is to 

complete this contract. The contractor further agrees to furnish pounds 

of seed in addition, to be left with the owner to be used by him should weak or bare 
spots make a second reseeding necessary. 

Whenever one has long strawy manure or any other material 
that can be used for covering, the raking in of grass seed is unneces- 
sary. In fact, it makes a better job not to rake after seeding whether 
you have Ught or heavy ground to deal with. Much quicker and 
better results are obtained by putting a light covering over the seed. 
On the other hand, and in cases where manure cannot be obtained 
reasonably, or where the area to be sown is too large to be mulched, 
a light raking and roUing are the next best thing. 

Border and Shrub Planting 

When planning the planting of home grounds, I should con- 
sider first the surroundings or adjoining grounds at either side of 
the lot lines. Where objectionable sights are to be overcome, heavy, 
dense planting is necessary. This may consist of tall conifers, hard- 
wood or tall-growing shrubs. The choice of what is best to use is 



134 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




BORDER AND SHRUB PLANTING 135 

governed by the amount of money the owner is wiUing to spend. 
Tall conifers are most effective and expensive; hardwood trees afford 
protection in Summer, but not much in Winter when one wants it 
most. This is to an extent true with most shrubs. But those who 
cannot afford evergreen trees have to use shrubs and at times are 
wiUing to have a small stock of these planted and wait for results. 
In border planting always consider the land across the lot hues. 
If this is planted with shrubs, you may need but little planting, 
or just a Uttle to form graceful Unes. Whether the shrubs are planted 
on one side of the lot line or the other doesn't matter as long as the 
outUnes of such a planting are attractive. In planting a border to 
outline grounds, always have in mind what it will look like in a 
few years to come. To plant shrubs such as Spiraea Vanhouttei, 
Honeysuckle, Lilac, or Highbush Cranberries 2 to 3 . ft. apart is a 
crime; the owner must expect to lift every other plant in two or 
three years to allow room for the others. Wherever you can, allow 
from 4 to 5 ft. of space. Never plant in straight rows, or mix things 
up too much. Plant according to the height and habit of each 
variety and always in groups of from five to nine plants of each. 

For instance, starting a border along the sidewalk on the lot 
Une, a group of dwarf Barberry may be placed first, then a group 
of Spiraea Vanhouttei, then a group of Weigela, followed by Snow- 
berry, Lilacs, Highbush Cranberry, Forsythia, ainother group of 
Spiraea, Honeysuckle and so on. Where a border is more than 
6 ft. in width, carry your tail varieties to the back and keep such 
as Berberis Thunbergii, Kerria, Hydrangeas, Spiraea Thuiibergii, 
Forsythia suspensa toward the front. Always bear in mind the 
desirability of obtaining a contrast in foliage and distributing your 
flowering sorts so as to obtain a touch of color aU through. The 
same with those bearing berries or fruit; and, last but not least, 
plant for Winter effect. Consider the gray bark of the Loniceras, 
the brown of the Philadelphus, the red of Salix or Cornus, and the 
yellow of the Golden-Barked Cornus. For that matter Spiraea 
Vanhouttei or the dense growth of Berberis Thunbergii with a 
sprinkling of berries is fine for Winter, When everything is in a 
dormant state, here is where the conifers come in. They can and 
should be planted in groups in a shrubbery border to outline the 
grounds. These conifers don't need to consist of expensive Blue 
Spruce; almost anything will do so long as it provides the green 
Winter effect. Evergreens or conifers don't often grow all by them- 
selves in their natural state; they Uke the company of trees and other 
shrubs, and look well with them. 

The Foundation Planting Is Important 

The foundation planting is another important matter. With 
very few exceptions, almost any home is greatly improved by a 



136 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

foundation planting of some sort. Usually soft or graceful shrubs of 
medium size, or such as can be kept at a medium height with the 
pruning shears are the best. Here again Barberry and Spiraea 
Thunbergii and S. Vanhouttei are among the best. So are the Snow- 
berries and Indian Currants. Rugosa Roses, dwarf Philadelphus, 
Kerria and conifers such as Mugho Pine and Savin and other Juni- 
pers, can be used to advantage. 

Care should always be exercised in treating the front of the 
grounds. Here and there is an owner who desires heavy planting in 
the way of a sohd continuous border in order to get privacy. But 
more often it means simply a hedge or a few groups of shrubs with 
openings between the groups— which really gives the best effect. 
The larger the grounds the more heavily you must plant, and the 
bolder the curves and sweeps of a shrubbery border. The smaller 
the grounds, the more careful you must be to have your planting in 
proportion to the surroundings. Here also all too frequently, for 
the sake of the immediate effect, shrubs are planted too close to- 
gether. In a group of dwarf Barberry which should contain say 
seven plants, we may find fourteen. Or the stock is planted so near 
the sidewalk that the branches will be in the way before the first 
season is over. All this can be and should be avoided. 

The way for the beginner to get ideas in arranging the planting 
of shrubs in groups for the entrance of grounds, is to look at other 
plantings. That holds good also with border or hedge planting, 
or, for that matter, any landscape work. 

In charging for the planting of shrubs a great deal depends on 
what preparations have to be made before one can start to plant. 
If the soil is so poor that it needs to be replaced, or enriched with 
manure, the work will run into money, but if such is not the case 
and it is just a matter of planting, govern yourself by the cost of the 
shrubs to you. Shrubs which cost you at the nursery, say, $25 per 
100, by the time you have them planted will have cost you twice 
that much. Even if only a few are to be planted, a dollar per plant 
is not too much to charge for them. 

Trees are of great value on the home ground. There are times, 
as in the case of a wooded piece of ground, when a good many have 
to be taken out before you can even start to grade. Always open 
up well on the east and north sides of a residence; you want the 
morning sun and the Hght which trees keep out on the north side. 
On the south and west sides go more slowly. The afternoon sun of 
a Summer's day often makes things very uncomfortable. If there 
are no trees on the grounds, plan to plant some— but not too near the 
residence; and always allow plenty of space between them for proper 
future development. What good is a beautiful Maple or a stately 
Elm when crowded in with other trees ? 



LANDSCAPE GARDENING FEATURE 
Special Features in the Garden 



137 



If you lay out small home grounds and plant them, avoid having 
them all look alike. Treat each place just a httle differently from 
the others. This result can be considerably helped along by what- 
ever additional work has to be done after the grading, lawn, drive, 
walks and lot line plantings have been completed. 

Perennial and so-called hardy flower borders add a great deal 
and we will take them up separately a little farther on. 

A Uttle formal garden that can be laid out in an almost endless 
variety of designs is always attractive; then there is the Rose garden 
and the water garden or pool which can be made quite a feature. 
The rear of a residence can often be made to look even better than 
the front and often is used by the owner more than any other part 
of the grounds. A few specimen conifers are almost always in place 
somewhere; so are pergolas, gazing globes, fountains or bird baths 
and sun-dials. 

Rustic or concrete benches may be used; the rockery can be 
made in endless shapes to harmonize with the surroundings ; a Summer 
house can often be used to great advantage; a little ravine gives 
occasion for the building of a little bridge from which one can turn 




Fig. 44. — The Formal Garden Feature. Wherever space permits the formal 

garden can be made an attractive feature. It should always be considered in the 

laying out of a showground 



138 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

on the water of a miniature waterfall nearby. A sunken garden 
with a fountain in the center surrounded by a few narrow formal beds 
and with Boxwoods in concrete vases at the corners will help to make 
another feature of certain grounds. The vegetable garden may be 
screened off by a small thicket of native shrubs with a path winding 
through it and an arbor at the entrance, and you may suggest a wad- 
ing pool for the "kiddies," or a swimming pool with an evergreen 
hedge for a screen. Bird houses and feeding places for birds, with a 
group of native trees to afford shade and plenty of ferns are in order, 
and so are a few of the many beautiful native, hardy plants, with a 
path made of stepping stones leading to an open space that is just 
the right spot for a camp fireplace and rustic seats. Not every 
ground requires or wants a terrace, but some do and it is here that 
the stone step and stone walk are in order. All of the above are only 
a few of many suggestions which might be offered in helping to make 
the home grounds attractive and the layout different from others 
in the same neighborhood or community. 



RAISING SHRUBS AS A SIDE LINE 

FOR the florist located near a nursery where he can quickly ob- 
tain whatever he needs in shrubs and trees, it may not pay to 
think about growing on some of this stock himself. But there are many 
florists who do more or less landscape work, and who must have the 
stock they need shipped great distances, and so find it convenient 
to devote a part of their grounds to the growing on of shrubs and small 
trees of the more popular varieties. Then there is still another 
class, and to my mind the largest, made up of those who have by 
years of experience found that, whether they are located one mile 
or 500 miles from the nearest nursery, it pays them best to buy what 
they want when it comes to well-grown, clean shrubs ranging from 
2 to 4 ft. in height — and these are needed by the hundreds. 

On the other hand, it is well to devote a little land to the growing 
on of specimens so as to have them on hand whenever a customer 
wants such material. There are times when from $10 to $25 is readily 
paid for a large specimen Lilac, Honeysuckle, Spiraea, High- 
bush Cranberry, Japan Quince, Philadelphus or Weigela. It is true 
that such specimens don't always do well, but there is a demand for 
them; there are people who simply cannot wait a couple of years 
for a Lilac 2 or 3 ft. in height to grow and develop into a flowering 
plant. They not only want an immediate effect and flowers the 
first year, no matter how poor they may be, but they are willing to 
pay for it. There are nurseries where such specimens are grown on 
to supply this kind of demand, but you cannot very well ship such 
stock with naked roots. That would require cutting it away back 
after planting, which is not necessary if a plant is lifted and delivered 



RAISING SHRUBS 139 

with a ball of soil. With enough soil around the roots you can lift 
and transplant a large Lilac or Spiraea Vanhouttei in full bloom and 
make it Uve. This is not to say that such a plant is as good as one 
which hasn't been disturbed, but the very fact that it can be done 
means a lot. 

Most nurseries don't bother with such large stock. When a 
shrub gets to be from 4 to 5 ft. in height, they get rid of it one way 
or another. For them there is more money and less bother in grow- 
ing on regular sized stock from rooted cuttings in the nursery row 
and every three years or so clearing the land for another lot to come 
on. But I am convinced that the local florist with room outdoors, 
who makes a side line of fixing up small grounds for his customers 
wiU find a good margin of profit in growing on specimens of the 
popular varieties, and in taking proper care of them. 

Growing on Specimen Shrubs 

The most important factor in growing shrubs into large 
specimens is to give the plants sufficient room for development. 
You cannot get results under crowded conditions. The next thing 
is to keep the soil well cultivated, keep the plants sprayed and give 
them each year a httle pruning. Usually a Lilac, a Spiraea or a 
Bush Honeysuckle, if given plenty of space, will develop into a 
fine-shaped specimen even if left alone. But in the case with a 
Spirsea or a Honeysuckle, if you keep the inside of the plant cleaned 
out a little and after it is through flowering prune back some of the 
heavy growth, you help matters along. 

Your nurseryman will supply you with 2- to 3-ft. or 3- to 4-ft. 
stock in early Spring. Order enough of it and fine it out in nursery 
rows, allowing about 2 ft. between the rows. Prune back well and 
the foUowing year you can lift every other plant in the rows and 
sell them. With 4 ft. of space each way the plants wiU be all right 
for at least two more seasons, or even three. After that, either sell 
more, to give the remainder more space, or transplant. In four 
years after planting you wiU have good specimens for sale and by 
planting a few plants each year, you can always have some coming 
along. If you wish, you don't need to have the plants in straight 
rows; the stock may be grown on in an irregular border along the 
lot lines of your property. Thus you can not only beautify your 
grounds, but also, by taking out a few of the large plants each year, 
and replacing them with others that wiU come along, make it a 
paying proposition. 

Growing on Small Nursery Stock 
You are not butting in on the nursery business, nor interfering 
with it in anyway by growing on a part of your own nursery stock. 
In fact, almost every nursery in the country today issues each Spring 



140 



FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




NURSERY STOCK POSSIBILITIES 141 

a list of so-called "lining-out stock," which it offers at from $25 to $50 
per 1000 plants, according to the variety. These plants usually 
consist of rooted hardwood cuttings and the nurseries don't care 
whether another nurseryman or a florist buys them. They also 
realize that the more florists handle nursery stock, the more will be 
sold. The few shrubs a florist grows on are usually the smallest part 
of his requirements in nursery stock, so there is no reason why those 
who have the land shouldn't go into the growing on of a few of the 
shrubs they need. 

Almost any rooted cutting planted out in fair soil and kept 
cultivated, wiU by the end of the second season, develop into bushy, 
salable 2- to 3-ft. stock. Some of the plants will be even larger. If 
you have use for such stock, why not grow it? It wiU pay better 
than a lot of other things that take up bench space and demand a lot 
of your time. To me anything that doesn't need coal during Winter 
looks good. Besides, there is an ever-increasing demand for shrubs 
and other hardy stock. 

To the beginner I might say that there are among the shrubs 
certain varieties which everybody knows. It is these that you 
should consider first, and of which you should plant most as you 
go along. Then keep on adding to your assortment. 

Twenty Populab Shrubs 

The following is a fist of what, to my mind, are twenty of the 
most widely used shrubs. Ttey are arranged not so much according 
to their popularity as to the amount you need of each. For instance, 
the Lilac is far more popular than the Japanese Barberry, yet you 
will need ten Barberries to one Lilac on the average home ground; 
so it is with Japanese Quinces^and Honeysuckles. In my experience 
with shrubs, they rank in importance and in the quantities most 
used about as follows: (1) Japanese Barberry; (2) Spiraea Van- 
houttei; (3) Bush Honeysuckl&; (4) PWladelphus; (5) Hydrangea; 
(6) Weigela; (7) Forsythia; (8> Red-twigged Dogwood; (9) Snow- 
berry; (10) Lilac; (11) Rosa rugosa; (12) Persian Lilac; (13) Golden 
Dogwood; (14) Althaea; (15) Highbush Cranberry; (16) Snowball; 
(17) Kerria; (18) Japanese Quince; (19) Golden Elder; (20) Cutleaf 
Elder. I don't claim that this li&t will suit everybody, yet I am sure 
it wiU be a good guide for those starting out to go by. - 1 am also 
sure that hardly ever will anyond have a surplus of any one of the 
first twelve named, no matter how many of each he grows on; and 
even less often of the first six." 

Besides the above twenty' varieties there are, of course, a great 
number of other good ones and still others that are used for hedges 
but are not mentioned here. But those who once get started, will 
soon find their way. 



142 



FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 
HOW ABOUT HEDGES? 



YOU can use almost any shrub, evergreen or conifer for hedge 
planting and obtain the desired effect if the plants are sheared or 
trimmed into shape. Yet certain varieties are more adapted for 
that purpose than others, and a great deal depends on what height 
hedge is wanted, what space is allowed for its spreadmg, and for 
what purpose it is intended. 

There is hardly a florist doing business in a city or town of any 
size, who, even if he doesn't handle nursery stock, isn't called on ever 
so often to plant a hedge, whether it is intended merely to line a small 
lot, to screen an unsightly view or alley, or to be planted back of a 
wire fence. 

It isn't a matter for discussion whether it is desirable to recom- 
mend hedges or whether they make a street more attractive, or in 
time become a nuisance. Rather is it for the florist to encourage his 
patrons whenever they happen to think about planting a hedge. 

No matter what style of gardening may come into fashion, 
there will always be some who want a hedge in front, along the 
sides, or aU around their home grounds, and the local florist should 
be able to talk hedge as well as bride's bouquet or Christmas basket. 
What is stiU better is to have a supply of the most popular plants used 
in the planting of hedges, or to be in position to show a well-kept 
hedge on his own grounds. 




Fig. 46. — Boxwood in the Nursery Row. We have only recently begun to grow 
Boxwood in this country, but already we are "on our way." Here we behold two- 
year-old plants weU mulched with cornstalks to conserve moisture and keep down 
weeds. They have been growing in their present location in New Jersey one season 
and certainly look promising 



HEDGES AND HEDGE PLANTING 143 

Any hedge confined within a limited area needs constant at- 
tention the same as a shrub border or anything else we plant. It 
is different with one used as a windbreak, but such are the only 
exceptions. As far as the florist is concerned, a hedge, in order to 
look attractive, has to be taken care of to the extent of keeping the 
plants in a healthy state and properly pruned to produce the best 
effect. 

Suitable Plants for Hedges 

I beUeve the Amoor River Privet {Ligustrum amurense) is one 
of the most desirable of hedge plants for ordinary purposes. In 
many locahties it has replaced almost entirely the Cahfornia Privet 
wherever the latter isn't quite hardy. Not only does this Privet 
make an ideal hedge plant, but it can be pruned or clipped into 
almost any desired shape or form, and planted at a moderate cost. 

For the best effect a double row should be planted, allowing 
about 15 in. between the plants; if used near a walk don't plant 
closer to it than 3 ft. to allow for spreading. 

Japanese Barberry {Berberis Thunbergii) is used for hedge plant- 
ing perhaps even more than the Privets. It can be clipped so as to 
obtain a formal effect, but shows up at its best when pruned just 
once in Spring, and after that allowed to develop its graceful branches 
usually covered with berries which hang on all Winter, and at least 
long after the brown and red colored foliage has disappeared. The 
only person I ever found objecting to a Barberry hedge was the man 
in charge of one who had to clean it, in Spring, of the leaves gathered 
there during the Winter months. Such a hedge will, in time, grow 
to a height of 6 ft. and make as wide a spread; yet for years it can, 
with proper pruning, be confined to dimensions of 2 ft. or so each 
way. 

Rugosa Roses make a showy hedge and so will Spiraea Van- 
houttei, Kerria, Bush Honeysuckle and the Red-twigged Dogwood, 
but none of these adapts itself where a formal affair is desired. 
In evergreens we have Boxwood where this plant is hardy; Rho- 
dodendrons also make grand hedges but are out of the question 
with most of us. In conifers the Arborvitae heads the fist, remain- 
ing in good shape longer than Spruce or Cedar. For bordering a 
formal garden or lining out the walks, the nearest to Boxwood 
and, by the way, a good Substitute for it, is the new Box Barberry 
or dwarf form of Berberis Thunbergii. 

Whenever space permits and there is no limit set as to height, 
the Bush Honeysuckle, the Lilac and the Mock Orange are aU 
desirable. If four feet of space can be given between the plants, 
so much better will be the final results. By planting too close 
you may obtain an immediate effect but not a lasting one; it will, 
before long, mean bare stems below. The same holds good with 



144 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Spiraea which not only becomes bare below but, if not pruned 
properly each year, right after it is through flowering, becomes 
top heavy and resembles anything but a hedge. 

How TO Charge for Hedge Planting 
There are times when a customer hasn't the means or is not 
wiUing to go to great expense in having a hedge planted. In such 
cases, and particularly when you have to purchase the stock from 
your nurseryman, you will do best to sell him the necessary number 
of plants at a fair profit and do the same if you have to plant them. 
There are other times when you are called upon to prepare the 
soil, plant and do a good complete job and most Ukely you are 
expected also to make good should any plants die the first season. 
This, by the way, is not unreasonable as long as your customer 
wants a good hedge and is willing to pay for it. In such cases it 
is best to charge by the linear foot and, outside of evergreens and 
conifers, a charge of from one to two dollars per linear foot is not 
too high, depending, of course, on the size of the shrubs you use, 
what they consist of, and the number of Unear feet to be planted. 
It takes pretty nearly as long to get ready, prepare and plant fifty 
feet as seventy-five or one hundred feet, and while under ordinary 




Fig 47. — The Value of a Display of Conifers. Even ■though you don't grow 
on your own stock of conifers, you doubtless have call jfor [them if you do land 
scape work as a side hue. You can greatly increase your sales by maintaining a 
well arranged display on your grounds where people can gee their grace and beauty 



HEDGES AND HEDGE PLANTING 145 

conditions and with just a little care, it isn't likely that you should 
have to replace many plants, it is a gamble nevertheless for which 
someone has to pay. Even if every plant lives and does well you 
should be paid for taking the risk, and if called upon to replace, 
do so cheerfully. You can't very well overcharge for planting a 
good hedge, and for those who want a satisfactory hedge the money 
is well spent. 

HANDLING CONIFERS AND OTHER TREES 

"VW^HILE you can easily handle a specimen shrub, even when of 
" large size, things are different when it comes to large trees. 
One has to be properly equipped to move trees when they have a 
trunk six or more inches in diameter. It takes a regular tree wagon 
to move them, but for all of that it doesn't hurt, if you have the 
space, to plant each year a few small Elms, Maples — Hard, Red- 
leaf and Gutleaf — Ashes or Lindens. They will all grow into 
money, and the same is true with conifers. You couldn't use an 
empty lot provided with half decent soil to better advantage than 
by filling it with small Spruce, Pine or Arborvitae. In a few years 
you can start selling plants, giving the remaining stock more space 
in which to develop into large specimens. 

There are many sections of our land where much good could 
be accomphshed by the local florist encouraging the planting of more 
trees, especially conifers; locahties where Spruce and Pine would 
do well and help to create a charming Winter efl'ect; where streets 
and highways are bare and could be made beautiful with rows 
of trees. There are many instances where a florist established in a 
small city or town could acqiiire land on the outskirts at very 
smaU cost. He would hardly feel the loss of the money it would 
require to plant, as a starter, an acre or so with smaU trees and 
conifers; yet in the course of a few years this would yield him a 
better income than any other crop he could possibly plant. I 
know this can't be done everywhere, as in many places nurseries 
are already established, but this country of ours covers an awfully 
big area and there are all kinds of opportunities for future develop- 
ment. 

A man cannot very weU start a smaU nursery and wait for a 
number of years for returns. He has to have an income in the 
meantime, and in localities where there is a florist but no nursery- 
man, that florist cannot do better than to get busy, no matter if he 
starts on only a small lot and keeps on adding a little each year. 
Besides aU that, I am sure that every florist who conducts a local 
trade and does landscape work wiU find a Uttle nursery where he 
can at any time go and dig a few shrubs, conifers, or trees a mighty 
convenient thing to have. If he hasn't such stock on hand he is 



I 



146 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

badly handicapped. I don't mean that he should make an attempt to 
grow on everything that is needed and so get away from buying, I 
know it would be folly to attempt this. For I am sure that the 
more you grow on, the more you will sell and the more you will 
buy from others. But if you do landscape work and have to depend 
year in and year out on stock that has to be shipped great distances 
in wooden boxes, you are working at a great disadvantage. 

For a descriptive list of twelve desirable conifers for the florist 
to grow on, see Chapter VII, page 203. 

RAISING FRUIT TREES AND WHAT IT OFFERS 

Retail growers located in the smaller towns and in sections where fruit 

trees can be grown for retailing, no matter how limited the varieties, 

can make the selling of such stock a profitable side line. 

F THERE is anyone who should encourage the planting of fruit 
trees, such as Apples, Pears, Cherries, Plums, and Peaches, 
it is the local florist or florists of a town. I realize that in order to 
make such trees really pay, expert care and attention must be given, 
the same as with anything else. But there are many hundreds of 
thousands of such trees all over the land on small home grounds, 
which are giving pleasure and delight to the owners — and there is 
room for miUions more to be planted. 

Let us take, for example, the so-caUed common Keifer Pear. 
This variety wiU grow where other better ones cannot be grown or 
rather won't amount to much. But see what a beautiful tree it 
wiU develop into in a short time with its upright habit, covered all 
Summer long with deep green glossy foliage, hardly ever infested 
with insect pests, loaded almost every Spring with thousands of 
flowers and bearing an abundance of fruit which cannot be beat for 
preserving even if not as palatable as other varieties for eating! 
Why cannot we recommend such material to a customer who is in 
want of trees? When once established, it will get along and thrive 
with almbst no care. 

"More Fruit Trees for the Home Grounds" should be the 
motto of every retail grower. Encourage it, push it; plant some 
trees on your own grounds. It takes many years to grow a good 
sized Apple tree, but so it does to grow a Maple or an Elm, so why 
not have all three ? What better shade tree could you wish than an 
Apple? And often where Apples won't do, Crabs will. Where is 
the family that doesn't use Crab apples in Fall for putting up? 
Let the nurseryman advertise and canvass your town from one 
end to the other; so much more will be planted for the good ot 
everybody, and there will still be plenty of chance for you to sell 
some. So far, we have only begun planting fruit trees in the home 
grounds, and in the great majority of cases you don't see them. 



RAISING FRUIT TREES 



147 










Fig. 48.— Why Not Haptole Fruit Trees? Don't let the slogan be merdy 
"Plan to Plant Another Tree;" add to it "Another Fruit Tree." Without consider- 
ing the value of the fruit, what»could be more desirable as a shade or flowering 
tree? The country florist in particular should encourage fruit-tree planting 

Plant Cherries and Plums or Peaches in with the stock for an ir- 
regular border of shrubs along the lot lines. Even if they bear 
fruit fit to eat notoftener than one year in every five or six, they 
look as weU as any other tall-growing foliage shrub and are beautiful 
when in bloom. 



148 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Get the principal of your public school interested in the planting 
of more fruit trees and let him get the "kids" interested. Furnish 
some small trees each Spring for the children at cost, and let them 
plant them. It helps you in business; it helps the children who 
plant them; and it helps the whole community you live in. 

Every little home with a 50-ft. front has room for three 
or four fruit trees, and there is hardly a spot East or West, South 
or North where, if given just a little attention, fruit of some kind 
cannot be grown. 

Your nurseryman will supply you in Spring with small trees, 
ranging from J^-in. in diameter or thereabouts, upward. The 
smaller the better, really, as long as they have good roots. The 
branches should be cut to one or two eyes from the little trunk at 
planting time and during the first year about six shoots should be 
allowed to grow. What you don't sell, plant out four feet apart 
in rows on your own grounds where you can lift them again the 
following year or later. Don't bother with doubtful varieties; 
you cannot grow everywhere a Delicious Apple or a Bartlett Pear or 
an Elberta Peach. The fancy fruits will always be grown only by 
experts, but there are usually varieties which are known to do well 
in a section which may be not the best for eating and yet be 
valuable for cooking, preserving or canning. And that, in most 
cases, is recommendation enough. 

SEED SELLING 

TTHIS could be made a profitable side line by the average florist 
* in many a town. 

There are ever so many communities all over the country 
where a florist is conducting a retail establishment in connection 
with his greenhouses where a side line could be worked up with 
seeds. It is just a matter of going after the business. 

Many of the larger seed houses place cases of seed packets in 
grocery and hardware stores, and while a little is sold in that way, 
no one has a better chance than the local florist to make a real 
business of it and handle and sell not only flower seeds but vegetable, 
grass, and perhaps farm seeds, too, according to his locality. 

Is there money in doing so? Of course there is. The very 
fact that you have people come in to get a five-cent packet of Lettuce 
seed means a prospective buyer of something else. Anything that 
tends to make people come into your establishment pays. But 
there is more to it than that ; wherever there are homes and home 
grounds seeds of every description are, wanted and a fair margin of 
profit can be -made by handling them. — 

It isn't hard for a florist who uses and sows seeds of all kinds 
himself to take up the retailing of seeds. From a small beginning 



SELLING SEED AND FERTILIZER 



149 



a good paying business can gradually be worked up in time, and it 
will help sell your greenhouse plants and other stock. Get away 
from the idea that handUng seeds isn't in your line. It wouldn't 
be if you were located in a city with good seed houses all around 
you and your hands full of other things; but if there isn't any 
regular seed store in your town, there is a mighty good opportunity 
waiting to be taken advantage of. 

SELLING FERTILIZERS 

TWHEN Spring comes and the man with the little home grounds 
" starts to rake leaves, begins to lay out his little garden plot and 
get the annual planting fever, he thinks of the dark, rich looking 
manure that he wants for either the lawn or garden ; he feels as if 
that was the proper thing to use. For that matter any manure or 
soil, if it is of a rich, black color, appeals to any one who has either 
a Ught sandy soil or a heavy clay to work with. 

While it was comparatively easy in years gone by to obtain 
all the manure one wanted in the smaller cities and towns, the auto 




Fig. 49. — Inside the Modern Storage Shed which makes it possible to. oyer- 
winter a great variety of stock until time to force it or put it outdoors again. Often 
patrons will want you to keep plants for them. This view shows excellent con- 
struction that could be carried out on a smaller scale if desired 



150 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

has put the manure box out of commission. It is empty, never to 
be refilled, and with it has disappeared to a great extent the house 

fly- 
While stable manure will keep on getting less and less, the 
demand for fertiUzer will keep on increasing from year to year and 
there is the best of chances for the florist of a town or city to work 
up a paying side Une in the handling of it. There may at this time 
be no one in particular handhng fertilizer in your town, but there 
is bound to be some one who will, sooner or later. You may at 
first object to the idea of a florist with a nice retail estabhshment 
handhng fertilizer, but there is nothing in that; all you need is a 
shed or storehouse, to keep the bags dry; and during early Spring, 
if orders are taken in time, you can haul direct from the freight 
car to your customers' grounds and save extra handhng. No 
store is too good to take orders for fertihzer in, as long as you haven't 
got to handle it there, and the very fact that you use it yourself 
in the growing of your plants is the best recommendation for others 
to do the same. It should be as easy again for you as for a feed or 
hardware store to land an order for fertilizer. Let me here give the 
contents of a good letter to send out about the middle of February 
to those who have a lawn or a garden. 

Mr. J. Jones, 
Lake View Place, 
Chicago, 111. 

Dear Sir: 

Every lawn, in order to maintain a healthy growth and good color, 
requires food of some kind. Stable manure is not only unsightly and always 
contains a lot of weed seeds, but also is almost prohibitive in price. Prac- 
tically every golf club uses so-called commercial fertilizer for best results, for 
it is clean and contains more actual, available plant food than most manure, 
besides being far less expensive. 

Our first car wiU be in about ten days from now and as the hauling 
direct from the car to your grounds will save handling, we would be glad 
to make you a special price. We will be pleased to give you an estimate 
on your requirements including the spreading of the fertilizer. We might 
further state that the sooner this fertilizer is put on the lawn after the snow 
has gone, the more efifective it will be. May we hear from you ? 

Yours truly. 

You can have fertilizer put up in almost any size bags and 
you should go after the small orders, calling for 25-lb. bags, as well 
as big ones requiring ton lots. There is good money in both. 

STORING PLANTS FOR YOUR CUSTOMERS 

VOU will always find it best to take thorough care of the plants 
intrusted to you and no plants should be accepted in the Fall so 
far gone as to be hopeless. If plants received at the greenhouses 
don't look good, make it your business to let the owner know about 
it at once. It is not unusual for a customer to send almost any old 



STORAGE OF PLANTS 151 

dried-up or dead plant to you and expect a good one in return the 
following Spring. 

The time to attend to such trouble is when the plants come 
to you in Fall, for you are money ahead by not taking in such 
stock; or at least let your customer know the condition of the 
plants, and what to expect from them. Even if he is disappointed 
and your competitor is foolish enough to take them in, you are 
still ahead. 

There is often a question as to the proper charge for storing 
Boxwoods, but it is reaUy easy to figure. No one can store any 
kind of plant, no matter how small, for less than fifty cents per 
month, and that for not less than a period of six months. It is 
well worth that for a Boxwood two or three feet in height, and there 
should be a charge of at least one dollar per pair for cartage each 
way, if you don't have to go too far. Larger stock should be charged 
for accordingly. It is always better to charge enough, so you can 
take the best possible care of the stock, than to be satisfied with 
almost anything and not take care of the plants. 

How TO Avoid Difficulties 

Storing any kind of plants can be made a most disagreeable 
feature of the retail grower's business.' At best it isn't always 
pleasant, but you can't very well get along without it. You have to 
do it in order to oblige your customers and they have no one else 
to go to, so it is for you to make the best of it and adopt a system 
whereby you can avoid unpleasant feelings. To begin with, no 
one should be allowed to bring a plant in until either yourself or 
the man in charge of the place has had a chance to examine it as 
to its condition. Many a dose of white fly has been introduced 
and given a new home by being brought in along with an old fern 
or some other pet; and so with scale and other troubles. Or a good 
lady will come in and want to know "What became of the beautiful 
palm I left here three months ago?" and no one wiU know any- 
thing about it. Or you may hunt for two hours all through the 
palm house for a Rubber Plant, bigger and better than any you 
have on hand, only to have the delivery boy recall a week later 
that he brought the plant in, that it was in an 8-in. pot, seven 
feet tall with three leaves at the very top— and that "Billy threw 
it out." 

No one need say that there is no way to prevent such poor 
management; it is a simple matter to avoid it. You cannot possibly 
invite trouble easier than to store old Boston Ferns and the easiest 
way to avoid doing so is not to accept them. There are, of course, 
exceptions. You may have a good customer and one you can reason 
with who wants you to store a good fern; but between it and one 



152 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

with fronds on it six feet long full of scale, which has been in a dark 
place undisturbed for the past four years, there is a big difference. 

When you know that an old Kentia with two crippled leaves 
would, with the very best of care, require five years to make a good 
plant, why not tell the owner about it ? 

It isn't much trouble to properly label every plant received for 
storing, but think what a lot of trouble it may avoid later on if 
each plant is labeled at once. 

Take a few pages in the back of the cash book or journal and 
mark down the date of arrival of each plant and the condition it 
was in ; and if you have to write a letter about the plant, file away 
a copy. 

THE IMPORTANCE OF CUT FLOWER ARRANGEMENTS 

pLORAL designs and arrangements play an important part in 
*■ the business of the retail grower. The wholesale grower in bring- 
ing his cut Roses, Carnations or other stock to the market, gets out 
of them just the actual value they represent, while the retailer or 
florist who displays them to best advantage or uses them in making 
up a floral design, basket or spray has a chance to make a fair margin 
of profit not only on the flowers themselves, but also on the labor 
and skill involved in arrangement. 

Real art in a flower arrangement is never based on the amount 
of stock used in it, but always on the way it is arranged. The day 
of the floral pillow or wreath with a solid mass of short-stemmed 
Carnations, HoUyhocks or Candytuft as a base passed long ago, 
and that of the light, artistically arranged eifect has taken its place. 

Every retail grower has to depend more or less on disposing of 
part of his flowers in the form of floral arrangements in order to 
make money. With the unavoidable loss there is in perishable 
flowers, one has to have more of an outlet than just the selKng of 
Roses or Carnations by the dozen. It is for this reason that every 
effort should be made to encourage your patrons to use cut flower 
basket effects, centerpieces for their dining tables, corsages, arm 
bouquets or other arrangements. Not only wiU you find this more 
profitable, but your patrons wfll get greater value for the money 
they spend. 

Take an expensive wedding shower bouquet. By themselves 
the flowers don't look like much, yet their cash value, when 
properly arranged may be only one-third of that of the bouquet. 
The same holds good, though maybe to not quite such an extent, 
with a spray, a basket or any floral design. In all such cases you 
really get paid for what you know and are able to do. 



CUT FLOWER ARRANGEMENT 



153 




Practice Is Essential in 
Floral Designing 

There are enough design 
books on the market today and 
enough illustrations appearing 
from time to time in the trade 
papers to give one an idea of 
floral arrangements. As in 
many another accomplishment, 
to some the artistic arrange- 
ment of flowers seems like a 
natural gift while others find it 
impossible to acquire it no mat- 
ter how long they stick at it. 
Of course, in any case, it re- 
quires experience and practice 
to become efficient. Arid not 
only that, as important as any- 
thing is to learn how to accom- 
plish the most with the mini- 
mum of material. This should 
not be confused with giving as 
httle as possible for the money, 
but means rather the avoidance 
of waste. 

It is not possible here to dwell at length on this subject. Not 
that it isn't as important, perhaps, as any connected with the 
florist business, but men and women will have to find their own way 
themselves. Those who start into business with just a Uttle knowl- 
edge of what pleases the eye, a will to learn, and open minds will soon 
get on their feet. The first design or spray arrangement turned out 
may not come up to what it should be, but is there anyone who 
ever had a different experience ? 

Feel your way. Watch what others do. Do not try only to 
imitate them, but try to improve on their work. Keep on thinking 
of something a little out of the ordinary and keep on perfecting 
yourself. There is room for that improvement in the methods of 
even the most uptodate florist living. You could explain things to 
a man for a year, but unless he actually had a hand in the work, 
it would be of but little good to him. The minute you begin to have 
the least to do with such work, it comes perfectly natural to take 
an interest in it; and it is equally natural to keep on improving as 
you go along. 

Strive to please those you serve. That, after all, is the main 
thing. If you can turn out work that will please your patrons 
who pay for it, you are on the right road even if you never acquire 



Fig. SO. — ^Thb Sort of Rose Basket 
THAT Pays. No one would have paid 
more than two dollars and a half for this 
Dorothy Perkins Rose in a 5-in. pot; 
but with the dollar basket and the mty- 
cent ribbon added, it sold for six dollars 



154 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 





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the artistic touch of the large 
city florist. At the same time, 
in order to keep up to date, meet 
competition and keep on going 
ahead. You can't do better 
than to take advantage of every 
possible opportunity to find out 
what is going on in the big 
cities, where, usually, the new 
ideas in flower use and floral 
arrangement originate. 

Materials Useful in Design 
Work 

The farther away from a 
big city you are located, the 
more prepared you should be to 
fin all kinds of orders, but es- 
pecially such as you are apt to 
receive for funerals. It is always 
well to have a stock of different 
sized wire designs in wreaths, 
piUows, crosses or lodge em- 
blems. There used to be a time 
when these designs, nicely Hned 
with tinfoil, served as suitable wall decorations for the flower 
store, but it didn't last long and today no first class shop displays 
anything to remind a visitor of funerals. Store your designs out of 
sight where they won't rust. Have at hand an uptodate design book 
of floral arrangements to show to those interested and always carry 
a good supply of green and brown Magnolia wreaths. 

Personally, I don't approve of set designs in which the flowers 
in order to show up have to be wired on toothpicks. No matter how 
well arranged they are, there can be nothing really artistic about 
such pieces and the sooner we get away from them the better. 
While funeral work means much to us today in the way of business, 
let us keep on educating the public to use flowers for themselves 
and their friends while alive. The day will come when we won't 
have to wait for them to die in order to get orders. We are getting 
away from set and stiff designs as the use of baskets filled with 
flowers is becoming more popular for funerals. A spray of loosely 
arranged flowers is also more becoming, but of all formal pieces 
the wreath is, to my mind, the most appropriate. 

To come back to Magnolia leaves and wreaths made from 
them, these are among the most popular designs used today. It 



Fig. 51. — ^A Floral Design Properly 
Outlined. A.s important as anything 
about a set floral design are correct and 
welL proportioned outlines so that one 
doesn't (as is often the case) have to 
guess at what it is supposed to represent 



CXJT FLOWER ARRANGEMENT 



155 



is for us to be prepared to furnish them, and on short notice, too. 
It is well not only to carry these leaves always in stock and moss 
and hairpins as well, but also to have a few wreaths made up, ready 
for the addition of a cluster of flowers and some soft green. Thus 
you are enabled to deliver one at a few minutes' notice, especially 
during Winter time when a shortage of flowers may prevail. Magnolia 
wreaths can easily be carried for a long time if properly put away 
from dust, dirt and dampness. 

Gycas and Galax leaves, Statice, wire, tinfoil. Wood Ferns, 
Boxwood, Leucothoe, ribbon, cut flower baskets, lettering, cut 
asparagus, toothpicks, chenflle and design boxes are just some of 
the items one should always be supphed with. 




Fig 52 —A Dignified Wreath Without Flowers. There are occasions when a 
wreath like this wiU not only prove a pleasant change from the average but, with a 
scarcity of flowers in Winter tune, will appeal to those located far away from the 
cities. I doubt whether one could add anything to this design by using flowers in 

connection with it 



156 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Since you are in business try to be ready to fill any and every 
order received, whether it calls for a floral clock, a broken wheel 
or a blazing star. The investment required for the wire designs 
doesn't amount to much, but their possession may mean much to 
you in cash returns as well as the good will of a patron when you 
have a hurry-up order to fill. 

What About Artificial Flowers? 

Why not ? There is a place for them, in the case of the out- 
of-town florist especially, and occasionally they can be used to 
advantage. It isn't natural for a florist with houses full of stock 
ready to cut and use in design work to prefer paper or waxed flowers 
instead, but there are times when flowers are at a premium and when 
artificial flowers will answer every bit as well. And there are cases 
in which wreaths are to be used for grave decorations, when a patron 
will actually prefer the artificial to the fresh cut flowers. 

Floral decorations for a store, hall or church can often consist 
partly of artificial flowers, and answer the purpose every bit as 
well as the best Roses or Carnations you could cut. It isn't that I 
want to advocate the use of artificial flowers whenever and wherever 
it is possible. But I am sure the florist who insists that it is un- 
professional to consider them and that they have noplace in a first- 
class establishment, is making a mistake. A few doUars invested 
in a few boxes of such flowers kept handy, might easily prove a 
mighty good thing. And I don't know that there is much difference 
between such material and a lifeless, preserved Magnolia leaf, to 
the use of which I am sure no florist would object. 




CHAPTER VI 



IMPORTANT FLOWER DAYS OF 
THE YEAR 



CHRISTMAS AND ITS INCREASING IMPORTANCE 

AT no other period of the whole year do people go more out 
/\ of their way to make others glad, forget more completely 
J. V that one day is practically Uke the other, and realize more 
fully that there is no happiness compared with that of making 
others happy — than at Christmas. Each year we all give and 
receive more tokens of kind thoughts and thereby come nearer 
living and celebrating Christmas in the true spirit the day stands 
for; and so the florist, today more than ever, plays an important 
part in it all, not only measured by the amount of business he does, 
but also because by doing it he helps to spread cheerfulness to 
many a home, fireside and sick room. 

With hardly any exception, the established florist has been 
doing a greatly increased business with each succeeding year; 
there is every reason to believe that this will keep on, especially 
if we do our part in preparing the stock, advertising it and delivering 
the goods. 

Christmas Business Is What We Make It 

If we sit down contented with the way things are, Christmas 
will pass the same as every other weekday. Push and keep on 
pushing a Uttle harder each year, and it can be made one of -^the 
most important flower days of the whole year. And why shouldn t 



158 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



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Fig. 53. — ^A Wreath op Hemlock and Pine Cones. There is always 
a demand for the unusual. That is why some of your patrons will ap- 
preciate an arrangement like this around Christmas time 



it be? One can hardly imagine a single instance where flowers 
in some shape or another would be out of place if tendered as a gift; 
in fact, if greater efforts were made on the part of the florist to 
advertise sufficiently, many more could be made to think of and 
choose flowers in preference to other things. 

In other words, the Christmas business is exactly what you 
make it. You can have your patrons satisfied with twelve fifteen- 
cent grocery store wreaths, or you can educate them to demand 
fewer wreaths but better ones. 

You can handle a lot of plants and sell them as they are with 
but little profit, considering what they cost you; or you can use 
these plants in inexpensive baskets with a httle ribbon and double 
your output. You may not be able to sell a lot of so-called everyday 
stock but if you use taste in basket arrangements and display 
it properly you will get well paid for it. 



CHRISTMAS AND ITS IMPORTANCE 159 

Christmas Advertising 

For the florist located out of town, or rather in a moderate- 
sized town or small city where he depends on a local trade, even if 
he is the only florist in that locaUty, advertising, and a whole lot 
of it, is absolutely necessary if he wants to ^et the most out of his 
Christmas business. 

During the holiday season even folks who don't do much for 
the rest of the year are usually busy, and often too busy to think 
of what they might need or could use in the way of flowers or plants 
and particularly HoUy wreaths and greens. If left to themselves 
they will usually order their requirements a day or two before 
Christmas — at a time when you don't know what to do first. 

For years we have made it a practice to mark down, if at all 
possible, the names of aU patrons who come in at the last minute 
and are unable to obtain wreaths or Holly; a list is also made of 
all who buy wreaths. Starting about the fifth or sixth of December 
the following year, everyone on the list is called up over the tele- 
phone, and in a nice way informed that we are anxious to fiU their 
orders this year and would appreciate early booking so as to be 
able to give them the best attention. In that way most of our 
orders for wreaths, loose HoUy, Mistletoe, Winterberries, Boxwood 
balls, wfld Smilax and wreathing are in by the tenth of the month, 
and aU wreaths, with a good number of extra ones, are made up 
before the twenty-first. 

We have yet to hear of a customer being put out by our calling 
up; in fact, most of them depend on us to do it, and some would 
feel slighted if we neglected to. They will come personaUy to select 
what they wish in plants or cut flowers, or will call up about it; 
but for the HoUy wreaths and decorative greens it is up to us to book 
the order early. 



Preliminary Publicity 

The first reminder of Christmas can be made in the form of 
a neat card inserted with the statements going out on the first of 
December. Liberal space in the local newspapers from that time on 
is always money well spent; an appropriate Christmas folder sent 
out about December tenth is timely, and another one, the last 
reminder, about a week later, calls attention to the complete Christ- 
mas display as a finishing touch. An attractive shde in the movies, 
the putting of a few of the main Christmas plants in the windows of 
the local Western Union telegraph oflfice, and a neatly printed sign, 
"Orders Taken for Flowers by Wire for Xmas," will often do a lot 
of good. If you belong to the F. T. D. the agent of the telegraph 
office will direct inquirers your way. For those located just outside 



160 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

of the business section of a town, a part of a store or a window 
may be rented for two weeks or so and used for a Christmas display 
where the heaviest traffic of the town will notice it. "Say it with 
Flowers This Christmas" and other attractive folders may be left 
at the drugstore, hotel or other prominent places of the town; 
do everything and in every way to let people know that flowers are 
the only thing for Christmas. 

Your preparations for Christmas are never completed if you 
neglect to let everybody know about it, and often the last-miniite 
call in the way of folders, sent December twenty-second or twenty- 
third does more good than anything maUed previously; yet you 
want to do the other things as well. 

Preparing for Christmas 

You may take orders for Christmas delivery right after Thanks- 
giving, yet the real ordering often does not start until after the 
middle of December. This is followed by the Christmas rush of the 
last four or five days, during which you should do more business 
than in the six weeks following. Tins means that you must get 
ready in good time, prepare, plan and work out a way to conduct 
that brief, unavoidable rush with the minimum of confusion, to ac- 
compUsh the most, and to take and fill orders in the shortest possible 
time without mistakes. 

The beginner should always bear in mind that while prac- 
tically aU of the stock he handles is more or less perishable, some of 
it is more so than the rest. To have left on hand after Christmas 
a lot of Poinsettias or tender Begonias may mean quite a loss, 
while left-over palms, ferns and other decorative stock such as 
Araucarias, Dracaenas, Pandanus and the like form a good asset 
all through the year; we will come to that later. 

To start with the preparations: Baskets, pot-covers, ribbon, 
crepe, tissue, wax and wrapping paper, boxes and other accessories 
all can be purchased weeks or even months ahead for future delivery. 
No one who has ever gone through a real rush, or found himself sold 
out before the twenty-fifth of December, or who has tried to pur- 
chase flowering stock the week before Christmas and failed to 
obtain it, will let the ordering of such stock go until the want of it 
is felt. 

Locate the stock you need weeks ahead and place your order 
to be shipped at a certain time. As soon as Thanksgiving is over 
the store or show house should begin to put on its holiday dress, 
even if this consists only of a few bright Cyclamens with pot-covers 
or in baskets with suitable ribbons on the handle, a few samples 
of moderate-priced made-up baskets and some more expensive ones, 
a vase of red Winterberries and Boxwood, and a weU-made wreath 



PREPARING FOR CHRISTMAS 



161 




Fig. 51. — ^A Satisfying Christmas Basket. This pleasing arrangement for the 

holiday season consists of a Birch bark basket filled with Poinsettias, Oranges, 

Pussywillow, Winterberries and Asparagus 



of Boxwood or HoUy with red berries and red ribbon properly 
displayed. Red and green are your decorations from now on; 
if you remind the passersby and the visitors to your establishment 
of the coming Christmas they will help— by giving you orders. 



Get Your Supplies Early 

If you use waterproof crepe paper for inexpensive pot-covers, 
have a number of these cut to fit 4-in., 5-in., 6-in. and larger pots. 
Red, white and green are made use of, but a deep green is the most 
desirable. If these papers are cut, it will save a lot of time later 
on; and so with the cut flower boxes; make up some and have 
them handy when wanted. 

Make out a list of whatever you want from your wholesale 
or supply house and have everything on hand long before you need 
it. Spare no effort to be prepared to do business. The farther 



162 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

you are located from the large city the more attention you must 
pay to details. See to it that there is a good supply of wrapping 
paper, twine, sheet and sphagnum moss, corsage pins, shields and 
boxes, plain cards, card envelopes, delivery tags, the different 
sizes of fern dishes and bulb pans, wire and wire rings for wreaths, 
various sizes of wired toothpicks, tinfoil, narrow fiber, chiffon, 
and a better grade of red ribbon; these are just a few of the things 
almost every florist, no matter where he is located, needs for Christ- 
mas. The list would be as long again should we mention all the 
items made use of by the larger city florist. 

t 

Displaying the Holiday Stock 

The chances of making a sale all depend on what you have 
in suitable Christmas stock and how it is presented to those who 
visit your establishment. For instance, a Winterberry centerpiece 
among a lot of baskets and pot plants doesn't make nearly as much 
impression as when set by itself on a small table with a white cover; 
in this way it wiU give one an idea how it would look on the dining- 
table. A Cleveland Cherry, no matter how fine the plant nor how 
fuU of berries, should not be placed alongside a Poinsettia pan; 
the color of the latter gives the Cherry anything but a Christmas 
effect, although alone or next to some white flowers it looks fine. 
There is never anything gained by crowding things in the store or 
show house and the florist with greenhouses in connection with his 
store should always put aside a bench in one of the houses where 
the main part of the Christmas stock can be kept to be drawn 
upon when needed. As this bench begins to empty, move up the 
remaining stock and use the space vacated for stock sold and to be 
deUvered later. 

If you should happen to have an oversupply of anything, 
whether it consists of Christmas Peppers, Cleveland Cherries, 
Primulas, Poinsettias or anything else, and you are anxious to dis- 
pose of the plants, you will never do it by crowding them into the 
show house, or having them predominate there. Rather display 
them to best advantage and in proportion to other stock. But 
push them, that is where you salesmanship comes in. If, for example, 
you have twelve Cleveland Cherries on a counter and just one 
each of Cyclamen and Poinsettia, it is a safe bet that no one will 
want the Cherries. 

Stock once sold has no longer any business in the store or show 
house; it should be removed immediately and put out of sight. 
Last, but by no means least, maintain your display in the best possible 
shape until you close up. When the flowering plants begin to give 
out, keep on bringing palms, ferns or other decorative stock to 
take their place. Anything looks better than an empty or half- 



DISPLAYING HOLIDAY STOCK 163 

filled counter or bench. Try to make things as attractive as you 
can even for the late comer. 

Delivering Christmas Orders 

Always bear in mind that what you send out should reach its 
destination in the best possible condition even though you may be 
located in a section of the country where from a sunny, Spring-like 
twenty-third of December the weather may change overnight to 
a blizzard with the temperature around zero. The man who wraps 
up a flowering plant or basket and he who delivers it to the customer 
in the same shape in which he received it, are as valuable assistants 
as any you can have around you. Whether your territory is big or 
small, the orders to go out on the twenty-fourth and twenty-fifth 
should all be properly packed and set in lots going the same direction. 
The orders going farthest, particulary during cold weather, should 
receive special wrapping and attention. If the delivery man can 
have a good boy with him to get the orders ready and out of the 
car quickly it saves a great deal of time and more than pays for 
his services. 

AU the good you may have accomplished in growing on a good 
stock, preparing in every possible way for the rush and doing a big, 
profitable business, counts for nothing if your stock is not delivered 
properly. No one can conduct a Christmas rush and not have any 
complaints; but why not avoid them as far as this is possible? 

You must adopt a proper system of conducting things. Every 
order, whether it is a cash sale or charged, should be booked with 
full instructions as to delivery. Wax paper envelopes will keep 
cards clean and dry and should be securely fastened. The larger 
your business grows the more necessary is a proper system of taking 
care of the filling of the orders, and each man has to work out for 
himself the way that is best for his own requirements. 

Keeping a Record Afterward 

There is nothing you can do which will help you more to prepare 
and arrange for the next Christmas than to devote a little time to 
putting down approximately the business you did and the stock 
and material used for the one just past. You can easily look up 
just how many cases of HoUy you used, how many wreaths were 
disposed of, how many pounds of Boxwood were bought, how many 
Cyclamens, Poinsettias, Begonias and other plants were used and 
how many Roses, Carnations, Violets, etc.; what you had too 
much of, and what you were short on. Make a complete record of 
every detail and place it where you can find it. Everything is fresh 
in your mind now, but it won't be long; you have to think of pre- 
paring for St. Valentine's Day, Easter and another Spring to come. 



164 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

So if you have a memorandum of all this year's details, it will be 
much easier to place your orders for next year, to prepare and grow 
on stock you were short of this season and perhaps to cut down on 
other items; you won't have to guess at how many cases of Holly, 
Winterberries or Wild Smilax to order or the number of wreaths 
to make up. 

Made-Up Christmas Baskets 

The illustrations in connection with these Christmas notes are 
not intended to show what elaborate and expensive arrangements 
can be created, but are rather to give an idea of what can be done 
with so-called inexpensive or ordinary stock with the help of baskets 
and pot-covers. 

A single Roman Hyacinth doesn't mean much, nor do three of 
them planted in a pot; but when you add a few small table ferns, or 
Asparagus plumosus, a little Boxwood and Winterberries, and place 
the pot in an inexpensive basket with a touch of red ribbon, you 
behold a most attractive Christmas arrangement. The same holds 
good with a Chinese, obconica or malacoides Primula, a small 
Cyclamen, Celestial Pepper, Cleveland Cherry or anything else; 
any of these plants needs a holiday dress in order to be attractive, 
and often twenty per cent additional cost per plant in the matter 
of dressing it up will increase its retail value seventy-five or one 
hundred per cent. 

Handle all the expensive and beautiful large specimen flowering 
and berried plants you can dispose of, and make up baskets to sell 
at a high price ; use Begonias, Oranges, Ericas and large Cyclamens. 
But also cater to those who cannot afford to spend fifteen, twenty 
or fifty dollars for a basket. Every florist located in the country 
has to prepare for this kind of trade, and even with not the best 
faciUties he can himself grow quite a variety of the plants which, 
while individually not perfect, are nevertheless nicely adapted for 
basket work. 

Around Christmas the demand for made-up baskets is especially 
strong. Your patrons want more than just a plant; a basket, even 
if small, filled with an assortment of things appeals more strongly 
to them. They enter your establishment with the intention of 
spending a couple of doUars for what they want, but will spend twice 
that much if the right kind of basket looks good to them. That 
means that you must carry a good assortment. You often fill a 
basket which may not suit you exactly in regard to color scheme- 
or arrangement, but, strange to say, it may be the first one a lady 
selects. You will find another patron choosing and finaUy deciding 
to take for five or six dollars a made-up basket consisting of a small 
Poinsettia, a white Primrose, a Bird's-eye Cherry and a few ferns, 



MADE-UP CHRISTMAS BASKETS 



165 




Fie 55 —Foot Christmas Offerings, simple and inexpensive, yet pleasing. 
Upper hft, a weU-grown 4-m. Cleveland Cherry in a fifty-cent dark-brown jardi- 
nifre; upper right, 4-in. Birdseye Pepper in 5-m half-pot, surrounded with sm^ 
ferns Bo^ood aiid Winterberry, and finished off with ^l"t« .^P? PfP/' "^fj^' 
and ^een paper band; lower left, two Grevilka robasta a GelesUal Pepper, a 4-m. 
CyclLien,ty^ee Asparagus plumosus, and some small f«"!f = ?°Xp?v«ripited 
red baskei with fiber bow containing a 4-in. Paruianus Veiichu, three vanegated 
Pteris, a Uttle Boxwood and some Wmterbernes 



166 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL HORTICULTURE 

instead of a beautiful 7-in. Cyclamen at its best. It is a good thing 
to have it that way, and a still better thing if you prepare for it. 

One has no trouble hunting up country florists who, around 
Christmas time, will invest a lot of money in expensive plants, but 
make no effort whatever to use their own stock in connection with 
them. They are satisfied with selling a 4-in. Chinese Primula for 
fifty cents instead of adding twenty-five cents for trimmings in the 
way of green and berries and a pot-cover and making it a $1.50 
plant. And as yet they don't take advantage of what there is on 
hand so as to get the most out of it. 

Holly and Holly Wreaths 

The only time of the year when Holly is used by the florist is 
at Christmas. The man with just a store and no dark, cool place 
in which to keep his cut Holly often loses more money than he makes 
in the handUng of it; but with the florist who has greenhouses, 
frames and proper facilities, HoUy can play an important part. 
Not only does the handling of it pay, but usually a customer who 
buys a few wreaths or loose Holly wiU also buy other things. 

You cannot afford to handle poor HoUy. Your stock must be 
the very best there is obtainable. Let the local grocer or fruit stand 
handle the other kind. Place your order for Holly with a responsible 
fu'm and don't wait until the last minute to have it deUvered. Try 
to have it on hand by the eighth or tenth of December; open and 
examine every case and give the contents a sprinkling of water, 
then close them and place them, if possible, in a cool, dark cellar. 
In that way Holly will keep perfectly for weeks if necessary; but 
expose it in a dry, hot or sunny place and it will go to pieces in a 
few hours. Those who have deep coldframes that can be kept free 
from frost couldn't find a better place for storing it, especiaUy if 
shutters are placed over the frames to darken the inside. 

If you ask your patrons to pay from seventy-five cents up to 
three, four, or five dollars for Holly wreaths, according to size, 
you must deliver goods of a superior quality as compared with those 
usually offered on the street. To do this you should procure the 
best Holly on the market and handle it in the right way. A good 
case of HoUy will make about thirty-five seventy-five-cent wreaths, 
besides five or six dollars' worth of selected long branches of loose 
Holly; but to get such results one must use up everything. 
You wiU get some cases full of short branches fit only for wreaths, 
and others with nothing but long branches, but usually they run 
half and half. If you have call for selected loose Holly, as soon as 
you open a case put what good branches there are aside and just 
use the short stuff for the wreaths; when the case is empty, make 
up bundles to sell at fifty cents, seventyjive cents and a doUar each. 



HOLLY AND HOLLY WREATHS 



167 



Lay the branches 
all one way, face up, 
tie them with heavy 
twine and put them 
back in the case to 
be returned to the 
storage place. All 
made-up wreaths 
should also go back 
if possible, but in 
the absence of a 
better place they 
can go underneath 
some bench in a cool 
house where they 
should be covered 
with paper. 

Twelve-inch 
wire rings are the 
right size for ordin- 
ary wreaths and No. 
3 wire is used for 
making them. If 
your patrons are not 
used to paying more 
than twenty-five or 
thirty cents for a 
wreath, educate 
them to ask for 
better ones by show- 
ing them the difference. It doesn't take much more material to 
make a dollar wreath than it does to make one for fifty cents, and 
it is your business to push the better sort. 




Fig. 56. — A Real Holly Wreath. Many people will 
prefer one good Holly wreath to a dozen poor ones and 
it is good policy for the florist to have on display a week 
or ten days before Christmas a few samples of "real" 
Holly wreaths to take orders from 



Boxwood's Increasing Importance 

Next in importance to Holly comes Boxwood, which from year 
to year is being used more extensively around Christmas and, in 
fact, all Winter long. If you have to buy it by the pound and pay 
a good price for it, you cannot afford to waste it. Let it he around 
in a dry place for a few days and it will be ruined, but if you take 
proper care of it, stock which you receive about the first of December 
can be kept in perfect condition until April. As you receive it, 
take it out of the burlap bags, gather as much as you can in one 
hand with the stems all even below, and heel it close together in 
a coldframe; get the stems five or six inches down into the soil if 
possible, give a good watering and cover the frame either with glass 



168 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

on which boards are placed to keep the light out, or use mats and 
boards. Bring it in as you want it and no faster. In that way you 
will always have good Boxwood on hand. 

Not only for wreaths do we use Boxwood, but often some of 
the short branches wiU come in handy as a sort of fiUer for plant 
baskets, where it will usually last as long as almost anything else 
in the arrangement. By its use you can often save expensive ferns 
or other plants. 

Boxwood Balls and Centerpieces 

A Boxwood centerpiece with Winterberries is not only a most 
appropriate thing for decorating the Christmas dinner table, but if 
you have several on display a week or so before Christmas some of 
your patrons will prefer them to cut flowers or flowering plants; 
while to you the profit wiU be at least double that on almost any- 
thing else you sell. 

Make a moss pad about six inches in diameter and three inches 
high on stiff cardboard, cut the Boxwood in six-inch-long pieces 
and stick them into the moss pad, with a few nice branches of 
Winterberries in the center. On the lower side fasten with wire 
hairpins (such as you use for Magnolia wreaths) a double thickness 
of wax paper or set the centerpiece on an ordinary plate so that it 
wiU not soil the table-cloth. If such a centerpiece is kept in a cool 
place overnight arid sprinkled once in awhile it will last until 
after New Year's. 

Boxwood balls also will often take the place of cut flowers or 
plants to be offered as gifts. Either purchase the wire frame of a 
ball about five inches in diameter and fill it with sphagnum moss or 
make up a ball without the frame and stick it full of Boxwood 
about four inches in length. An easier way is to stem the Boxwood 
on toothpicks; after this is completed trim the whole into a perfect 
baU. But, before you put the green into the moss, attach a 
12-in.-long wire so that you will be able to hang it up when finished. 
A few short Winterberries in the green and a red ribbon fastened 
onto the wire hanger will make it stiU more attractive. 

Wild Smilax and Other Greens 

It is always weU to stock up with Southern or Wild Smilax, 
for the reason that there is nothing quite so graceful for decorative 
purposes. This you cannot say of Holly. This green should also 
be kept in a cool place; but frost will ruin it. If it should freeze 
— if not frozen too hard — it will come out all right if kept in a dark, 
cold place afterward and well watered. 

Ther,e are times when one runs short of Holly — that is, good 
Holly for, decorating^and usuaUy there isn't much trouble in per- 



SMILAX AND OTHER GREENS 169 

suading a patron to take Wild Smilax instead, rather than be disap- 
pointed. 

Years ago Ground Pine was used in great quantites for wreaths 
and wreathing, and it is still employed for the latter purpose, but 
not so extensively. Unless you are called upon for extra heavy 
wreathing, it hardly pays to make it up. A better way is to purchase 
your requirements already made up. Long-needle Southern Pine 
tops are useful for decorative work; they often take the place of a 
valuable palm or fern in a church decoration and cost but a few 
cents. Almost anything that can be had in the way of decorative 
greens comes in useful at Christmas time. Every florist should be 
well stocked with Leucothoe leaves. Asparagus plumosus is of 
particular value; in small made-up baskets it can be used to fill 
in bare spots. This is not to say that one should make a practice 
of using either Boxwood or cut Asparagus in connection with a 
plant basket, but there are times when it is mighty handy to have 
both to fall back on. 

Handling Flowering and Berried Plants 

Whatever you have to offer in the way of flowering plants, 
each specimen should be at its very best on December twenty-fifth. 
It is fiine if the plant will still be good for New Year's, but it is the 
impression it creates on Christmas Day that counts for more than 
anything else. On that account it is not advisable to have in your 
own greenhouse many days before you need them plants such as 
Cincinnati Begonias, Poinsettias and others which were grown by 
specialists in a temperature of nearly 60 deg. Order in good time 
and have a sample on hand by the middle of December; but 
have the balance shipped so as to reach you four or five days before 
Christmas. Other stock, such as Ardisias, Peppers, Cyclamens, 
and Ericas, all of which get along in a temperature near the 50 deg. 
point, can be handled without loss and much more easily. 

There is hardly any use in naming the few varieties of flowering 
stock to be had during the Christmas season. Your trade paper 
will furnish that information, but don't neglect to locate in good 
time what you will want. 

Palms, Ferns and Decorative Foliage Plants 

For a good many years past, growers of select stock in flowering 
plants have usually sold out clean for Christmas; in fact, the supply 
has not been equal to the demand — that is, for good stock. Nor does 
it seem as if in our time these conditions would change, no matter 
what they may be the rest of the year. The florist who has to 
purchase his specimen plants should on that account not confine 
his display to flowering plants alone, but should carry a complete 



170 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

assortment of palms, ferns and other so-called decorative foliage 
plants, stock which will, if not sold for Christmas, be just as valuable 
afterward. 

Flowering and berried plants are not only expensive, but may 
be a loss if left over. You cannot say that of an Araucaria, a Kentia, 
a Pandanus Veitchii, or a pretty Dracaena; such plants well cared 
for, will grow more beautiful, if anything. On the other hand, you 
will always find among your customers many who may prefer such 
plants or a beautiful fern to almost anything else; your margin of 
profit in this case will be as great. Sometimes, when nearly every- 
thing in flowers is sold out and you have a nice lot of such plants 
on hand, there is no trouble in making a sale; but the thing to do 
from the beginning is to push them as much as your perishable 
stock. Here, again, a great deal can be done with the help of a few 
Winterberries, red ribbon and often a red crgpe paper pot-cover to 
make them still more attractive. 

Christmas Bulb Stock 

There are years when it is possible to have a few red and yeUow 
TuHps, Freesias and Trumpet Major Narcissi in flower for Christmas, 
but Roman Hyacinths, Paperwhites and Grand Soleil d'Or Neu-cissi 
are the standbys. All three are not only valuable, but can be had 
in flower in even the smedlest estabUshment. (See cultural notes in 
Part Two.) If you grow these plants cool, with plenty of space 
between them, they can be lifted with care and used in many plant 
arrangements. An 8-in. fern dish fiUed with Roman Hyacinths and 
a 2-in. Asparagus plumosus makes a fine centerpiece for the table 




Fig. 57.— A Flower Gift for a Winter Holiday. Lilies of the Valley are always 

attractive and evf n without greens or other flowers in a box with crSpe paper cover 

and harmonizing ribbon they make a suitable Christmas or Easter offering 



CHRISTMAS BULB STOCK 171 

and an endless assortment of small as weU as large baskets can be 
made up with them used in connection with a few other plants. 
What more pleasing combination could you imagine than a pan or 
low basket filled with Cincinnati or Chatelaine Begonias, small 
Adiantums and Roman Hyacinths? 

Not all of your patrons will want Paperwhite Narcissi in their 
baskets; many object to them because of their strong odor, but you 
can sell a lot of them in plant arrangements just the same. Fill 
even 6- and 8-in. bulb pans, and put a border of Adiantum or Aspar- 
agus around them. Do the same with the yellow Narcissi — Grand 
Soleil d'Or — or the double Romans. If you have them, you can 
sell them and make them pay; but obviously you cannot do so if 
you don't carry them in the first place. 

Cut Flowers at Christmas 

Cut flowers are the most perishable of all your Christmas 
stock and the out-of-town florist in particular has to be careful 
both in taking orders for them and in handling them. There is al- 
ways more or less trouble and disappointment in shipping flowers 
a long distance, especially Carnations, and if stock is on the road for 
several days, it doesn't have to be "pickled" to start with in order 
to "go to sleep" by the time you deliver it. 

I don't believe that you should discourage a demand for cut 
flowers, but it is better to disappoint a patron wishing to place an 
order, for say, red Carnations that you cannot supply than to take 
the order, and later on, disappoint him. It is easy to take an 
order for cut flowers for Christmas and quite another thing to fill 
that order properly. Never take an order for cut flowers unless you 
are reasonably sure that you can fill it; know beforehand where and 
how to get the flowers. 

The man located near the large city where he can in a couple 
of hours obtain almost anything he wants, or whatever there is on 
the market, has the advantage over the out-of-town man. On the 
other hand, Christmas is a time when flowering plants and made-up 
baskets are more used in preference to cut flowers for gifts than for 
any other special occasion. 

The high price of cut flowers around the hoUdays, their perish- 
able nature and the difficulty in obtaining what is wanted, should 
make every country florist careful in taking and fflling orders for 
them and in doing what he can to get his patrons to make use of 
plants if possible. You cannot fiU an order calling for a Violet, 
Sweet Pea or Vafley corsage with a Poinsettia plant, but there are 
times when a buyer is undecided whether to send as a gift red Roses, 
Carnations or a nice plant. That is the time for you to talk plants. 



172 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Immortelles, Everlastings, Mistletoe, Etc. 

The florist with a good stock of plants and flowers doesn't need 
to resort to artificial and dried materials, yet they are displayed 
around the hohdays even by some of the better city florists, who will 
make up baskets of Ruscus, Statice and Everlastings because there 
ate always some who will purchase them. If such an arrangement 
can be sold at a fair profit, why not do it? If your trade caUs for 
Red Ruscus, and wreaths made of Frieze, Ruscus and Statice, by all 
means have them on hand. Again, it may happen that some of 
your patrons wiU want a few wreaths for decorating graves. Be 
prepared for them. A Boxwood, Magnolia or Frieze wreath will 
usually iiU the biU, and if you have a limited number made up, a 
few bunches of ImmorteUes often come in very handy. You may 
run short on red berries for the decoration of a Boxwood wreath 
or something else, and in this case Immortelles will help out. 

Mistletoe we must always carry. The best plan is to go over the 
contents of a box and make it up into bunches ranging in value from 
50c. to $1. Tie each neatly with a narrow red fiber ribbon and 
bow so it is ready to hang up. This again will save you valuable time 
when filling your orders. 

EASTER AND ITS ACTIVITIES 

To the average retail grower Easter, to some extent, means more 

than Christmas. Not only is it one of the greatest flower days we have, 

but also a good deal of the stock used then can be grown on even in a 

moderate sized establishment, and that is what counts. 

COR Easter, well-grown Marguerites — whether specimen plants in 
* 6- or 8-in. pots or made-up pans of 23^^- or 33^-in. plants in bloom 
— are most attractive. You can get similar results with Sj/^-in. Gera- 
niums, in either the white or the pink shades. Put five or six into an 
8-in. pan and add a few Asparagus plumosus vines and a neat pot- 
cover. The same is true of Ageratum and Begonia Gloire de Chate- 
laine. There are times when your patrons will prefer such an 
arrangement to almost anything else. 

Large Pansy plants brought in from a coldframe a month or so 
before and planted on a bench in a 50-deg. house, will be in full 
bloom Easter week, and if you had a good strain of seed, and kept 
the colors separate, you can make up stunning pans which will sell 
readily. Forget-me-nots can be treated the same way and even 
English Daisies (Polyanthus Primroses) kept in a frame or a cold- 
house all Winter should also be a mass of flowers at Easter week, 
and can be potted up. Late-sown Primula obconica will usually 
be' loaded with flowers at that time and the same with Genistas, 
which should be kept in a coldhouse up to three weeks or so before 
Easter. 



EASTER AND ITS ACTIVITIES 



173 




Bleeding Hearts potted 
up during January, kept in 
a cool house and given 55 deg. 
about twenty-one days before 
Easter will be in full bloom, 
by then and the same with 
the variegated Funkia. 

All the above-mentioned 
stock can be gotten ready 
by practically every florist. 
Besides these things and, 
with many, of even greater 
importance, is the bulbous 
stock. Easter week is the 
time to dispose of pans of 
single and double Tulips, 
miniature Hyacinths, Daffo- 
dils and the many other fine 
varieties of Narcissi. If 
Easter doesn't come too 
early the Darwins are at 
their best, not only in pans, 
but also to cut from, and 
this holds good with the 
Narcissi and all the other 

Tulips. By planting Freesias in dishes during December and carry- 
ing them in a house just a little above freezing up to five weeks or 
so before Easter, you can have them all in flower. 

. Dutch bulb stock, however, when timed properly can be had 
at its best and in greater variety than at any other time of the year. 
As I mention under Dutch bulb stock, elsewhere, it pays any 
retail grower who looks forward to a big Easter business to keep the 
flats and pans filled with Dutch bulb stock intended for that day 
separate from those that are going to be forced during Winter. 
You cannot afford to depend upon what is left being good enough for 
Easter, and of all the stock you purchase for that day, none is more 
subject to prevailing weather conditions, or will suffer more when 
on the road several days, than Hyacinths, TuUps or Narcissi in pots. 

There are seasons when, with a forward Spring and Easter 
coming on, late date bulb stock is past its best, but as a rule it is 
among the most important of Easter plant materials. This is true 
not so much in the case of the large city florist, perhaps, who has just 
a store, is altogether dependent on the out-of-town grower to ship 
him the stock, and is without proper facilities for carrying it, as in 
the case of retail growers in the smaller cities and towns who 



Fig. 58. — Hyacinths for Easter. You 
can sell more Hyacinths during Easter 
week than during the three months previ- 
ous, but you should try to have them at 
their best just on Easter Sunday and not 
a week beforehand 



174 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

have ways" afid means of properly caring for their plants so as to 
have them just at their best for Easter Sunday. 



Prepabations for Easter 

. Perhaps as important as anything, besides having an Easter 
display, is to provide proper facilities for keeping the flowering pot 
plants such as Roses, Rhododendrons, Azaleas, Hydrangeas, Lilies, 
etc., in good shape. You must have a place where plants can be kept, 
ifi'lpund necessary, in a cool, shaded position. There the flowers 
&^lmbst anything wiU improve; they wiU get a finish not possible 
m ajbot, sunny house. I have yet to go through an Easter season 
li^Traioli, at didn't happen that, just a few days or maybe a week or 
^^ie-,i)efore Easter, a hot, windy speU set in^ That meant getting 
b^V tn<i moving things to cooler quarters. 



It helps a batch of late 
LilifS perhaps, but other stock, if left unprotected, would surely 
Mil.' Therefore, always provide either a well-ventilated and heavily 
shaded hDi|se, a frostproof shed or some other place, according to 
your needs, to properly take care of your plants. For bulb stock 
a deep coldframe is usually an ideal place to keep the flats and pans 
in good condition; such a frame can be shaded and ventilated to 
best suit the stock. 

What I have said about the Christmas rush is equally true in 
regard to preparing for Easter — you want to be well supplied with 

everything necessary for doing 
business. Baskets, hampers, 
pot-covers and ribbon play a 
more important part today 
than ever. It is the way some 
plants are dressed up that 
seUs them. Seeing what the 
big feUow in the large city 
does is a good way to get new 
ideas, for people want some- 
thing different, some new crea- 
tion and these usually come 
from the large cities. Not 
that the city florist is so much 
smarter than his brother from 
the country, but competition 
and the fact that he devotes 
his entire time to the selling 
end of the business make the 
city florist naturaUy a leader 
when it comes to a floral ar- 
rangement or dressing up a 
plant for the counter. It is 







i^"- 


■ %1 


m 


^^^^^K^u^'iii' 






^^ 


^^H 





Fig. 59.— Another Tasteful Easter Ab- 
RANGEMBNT. Narcissus Victoria and Cin- 
eranas can both be grown for Easter by 
even the smallest grower and then used most 
eflectively m such a basket arrangement 
as is illustrated here 



EASTER AND ITS ACTIVITIES 175 

from him that we, located far away from the larger cities, can 
get the best and the newest ideas and keep ourselves up to date. 

Simplest Stock Holds Large Possibilities 

What one might look upon as the simplest or most common 
flowers, properly displayed, will sell now. Geraniums, Pansies, 
Forget-me-nots or anything else you couldn't sell the Sunday after, 
will go Uke hot cakes on Easter, if properly displayed. Keep up the 
show until the last minute. Advertise. Let people know that 
Easter is 'coming and that flowers and plants are the proper things 
to help celebrate the occasion with. Push pot plants, but also be 
well suppUed with cut flowers, quite a few of which may be grown 
on at home. Here again Dutch bulb stock counts for a great deal. 

The Darwin Tulips should be at their best and when we once 
have Rev. Ewbank and Clara Rutt to offer, it is a hard task to move 
any of the early varieties of other Tulips, with the exception of the 
double sorts. Couronne d'Or and Murillo are among the finest 
of the eight or ten good ones available. Long-stemmed Daffodils 
and Emperor Narcissi are always good seUers, so are Poet's Narcissi 
or any of the other smaU-flowering varieties, some of which may be 
grown outdoors in frames, or in beds with temporary frames and 
sashes over them. 

In coldhouse crops there may be had the Snapdragons, Sweet 
Peas, Calendulas, Lupines and Stocks. I have hardly mentioned 
the LiUes for the reason that, in my opinion, the average smsdl 
florist is better off purchasing his requirements in bud and bloom 
from the specialist than trying to grow his own. The same holds 
good with the most popular of all Easter plants — the Rambler 
Roses, the Hydrangeas, the Rougainvflleas, the Ericas and other 
stock requiring special attention. 

No man in the business of selling at retail the stock he grows 
can grow aU he needs. There are enough other things to take up 
his time and with which he can succeed by giving them just ordinary 
treatment. 

With every florist Easter should prove a' greater flower day 
each year. It is weU worth while to prepare for it months ahead 
and to keep a correct record of all that is sold each year in order to 
know just how to prepare for the next one. 

MEMORIAL DAY 

MEMORIAL DAY has always been the most important of all hoU- 
days for the florist located near a cemetery and there is but 
little of value that can be said to him or that he doesn't already know. 
Rut this day, Uke all other flower days of the year, seems to become 



176 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 60. — A Window for Memorial Day. Especially around Memorial Day will 

an appropriate window decoration prove a good investment. For it is bound to 

attract attention and constantly reminds the passerby to use flowers in honoring 

the dead and in remembering the living 



of more importance each year even with those florists not located 
within miles of a cemetery. 

The World War brought about not only a more patriotic way 
of observing Memorial Day, but also, as part of it, more general 
decorating of the graves of departed ones with flowers than ever 
before. More and more do we set the day aside to the memory of 
loved ones, and there is absolutely nothing that can take the place 
of flowers to help do this. At present it is up to the florist not 
only to keep this spirit alive, but to encourage it. 

In every community there are naturally people who have graves 
to decorate, and cut flowers and plants are wanted to do it with. 
This means that you should let everybody know that you have them. 
It isn't enough that people know about you; you should let them 
know more about you. Call their attention to what Memorial 
Day really stands for and that you are ready to fill every order for 
plants, cut flowers, wreaths, sprays or anything else suitable for 
the occasion. Offer suggestions, and have a few neatly made-up 
Magnolia or Galax wreaths on hand. 



MEMORIAL DAY 177 

You don't want to take business away from the fellow across 
from the cemetery gate and you are not doing it by advertising. 
Rather are you helping him as well as yourself by making people 
buy flowers who hadn't thought of it until you called their attention 
to it. You don't need to live close to a cemetery in order to 
profit by Memorial Day. You can sell stock many miles away 
from one and have your customers take it with them. You can 
also take all kinds of orders for cut flowers or plants and. have 
them filled by telegraph, that is, if you advertise your abihty to 
do so. In' other words, you can have Memorial Day go by the same 
as any other week day of the season, or you can make it one of the 
great flower days of the year. It is up to you. 

There is hardly aiiy use in going over the long list of desirable 
stock one should carry for Memorial Day. Every florist who carries 
bedding stock carries, at the same time, the right kind of stock to 
decorate a grave with. Only, as with Geraniums, Heliotropes, 
Fuchsias and Petunias, it pays to have extra large stock, commanding 
higher prices than ordinary stock. You will want big plants in 
full bloom; aU foliage plants are suitable and in demand. The more 
people see of flowers and plants, the more they will buy and use 
them, and the greater May 30th wiU become as a flower diay. 



MOTHER'S DAY 

IT IS hardly necessary to call attention to the importance of 
* Mother's Day. Every one knows that this is the latest addi- 
tion to the list of great flower days, yet in some instances it has 
already outstripped Christmas or Easter. Nevertheless, only a 
small percentage of the many millions of human beings in this world 
in which flowers are sold, each one of whom has a mother to remem- 
Ser, knows about the day and its real significance. 

What we are doing today in the way of business for Mother's 
Day is only a starter. We have only just begun. Don't worry 
about stock being too high or people using artificial flowers. What 
is wanted at present and no doubt will be for a long time to come, is 
someone to produce the stock to supply the ever-increasing demand. 
Supply and demand will determine the price at which flowers for 
that day are sold. I am sure that every retailer is satisfied to sell for 
a fair price if he can obtain his flowers at a fair price. But if the 
supply isn't there and he has to pay a premium in order to obtain 
what he must have to fill his orders with, he has to charge accordingly. 

Mother's Day coming in early May gives even the small retail 
grower a chance to grow on a good part of his requirements pn his 
own place, and this means increased profits for him. 



178 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




MEMORIAL DAY 179 

Wide Range of Stock for the Second Sunday in May 

Almost anything in the line of such stock as sells for Mother's 
Day— Sweet Peas, Snapdragons, Calendulas, annual Larkspur, 
Lupines, Stocks, Schizanthus, Gladioli, double Cornflowers, Darwin 
Tulips, Forget-me-nots, Pansies, etc. — can be had without much 
trouble. Not only that, but quite a number of bedding plants can 
be disposed of. Anything in flower will find a ready market and 
you can obtain twice as much for a well-grown Geranium in bloom 
that day as you can three weeks after. Many people wiU not object 
to paying $1.50 for a pan with three Geraniums in it and a crgpe 
paper pot-cover, whereas they will refuse to pay that much for 
six Carnations, on which there is nothing like the same profit for the 
man who has to purchase his flowers in the wholesale market and 
pay fifteen or eighteen dollars per 100. You can make up attrac- 
tive pans of Gloire de Chatelaine Begonias with plants out of your 
bedding stock in 3j^s and the same holds good with dwarf Ager- 
atums. There is no reason why you can't have tuberous-rooted 
Begonias in fuU bloom at that time from bulbs started in early 
February or even later. The large fringed Petunias are good and 
Fuchsias sell well. Hydrangeas kept in a 50-deg. house will not 
come in for Easter, but will be at their best in early May and are 
fine for those wanting a more expensive plant. The same holds good 
with Baby Rambler Roses. Instead of trying to get them in for 
Easter, with not the best of heating facilities, why not let them 
come along for Mother's Day when there is demand for them and 
a shortage of such stock. Overcome the shortage of cut flowers by 
working up a stock of flowering plants. People with limited means 
and who have httle gardens will buy almost anything in the line 
of bedding stock for Mother's Day to be planted out later on. 
With houses that can be kept at 50 deg. during cold weather, 
formosum Lihes can be had in bloom by early May and will bring 
as good if not better prices than at Easter. 

Pansies sell well, particularly if you make up inexpensive 
baskets with them. In fact, they are among the very best things 
to have. Get baskets of the proper shades and fill each one solid with 
just one color — yeUow, blue, or white. Myosotis Victoria has a 
dwarf, compact habit of growth and large blue flowers and gives 
ideal pot plants. They wiU be in full bloom in the coldframes by the 
first of May and don't mind the lifting at all. The above doesn't 
nearly cover all the stock that sells readily at Mother's Day, but 
any retail grower can select and grow enough of it to keep him busy. 

OTHER FLOWER DAYS 

NEXT perhaps, in importance to Christmas, Easter, Motherjs 
Day and Memorial Day, we have Thanksgiving, St. Valentine's 
Day and Armistice Day. And there are stiU other special 



180 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



occasions when flowers and 
flowering plants can be made 
to play an important part. 

While we are in business 
there is only one thing to do 
and that is to keep right on 
going forward, to keep on doing 
more business. Each one of 
us individuaUy and all of us 
collectively must help push by 
bringing what we have to offer 
to the attention of the public. 
The more we get the public 
into the habit of making use 
of flowers, not only for every 
day in their homes but also 
for every special occasion that 
may arise, the less we wiU need 
to depend upon funerals and 
the sadder occasions to supply 
illustrations of the usefulness 
of flowers. 

To keep on adding more 
holidays to the calendar may 
or may not be the wisest thing 
in the world, but you and I 
will not be consulted about 
it. If occasions arise when 
there is a chance to help 
celebrate with flowers, it is our place to encourage that sort of 
observance. We should all do what we can to help celebrate any 
and every event that has to do with flowers; we should try to 
make people think of flowers. If possible we should each do some- 
thing individually that wfll compare favorably with the idea of 
"Whose birthday comes this month? Say it with Flowers;" or 
that of the person who first thought of celebrating one's; own birth- 
day best by sending one's mother a nice box of flowers. 

No retafl grower, no matter where he is located, should ever 
let a holiday of any kind pass by without making an effort to get 
a supply of suitable stock and to let everybody know that flowers 
and flowering plants are the things to most fittingly celebrate with. 




Fig. 62. — ^A Favor for February 14. 
St. Valentine's Day is a great flower day, 
but both country and city florists can make 
it stiU greater. Here is a simple, appro- 
priate arrangement of white Carnations, 
Lilacs and Asparagus — and, of course, a 
red heart. It is by Max ScUing of New 
York City 



ANNUALS AND WHAT THEY DO 



181 



CHAPTER VII 

ALL KINDS OF PLANT MATERIALS FOR THE 
RETAIL GROWER 

ANNUALS— WHAT THEY ARE AND DO 

UNDER annuals we class those plants which we grow from 
seed, whether started in Spring for Summer flowering or 
later to be grown on to flower under glass during the Winter 
and Spring months. To the retail grower in particular annuals are 
of importance and greatly improved varieties are being sent out; as 
we find out more and more about their cultural requirements under 
glass, we can make them bring better returns than ever before. 




Fig. 63.— A Typical Easter Combination of Popular Florists Stock. It 
includes one blue and one pink French Hydrangea with Enca cupressina, lerns 
and Pussy Willows in a green and white oval basket trimmed with pink nbbon bows 



182 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Annuals for Summer Flowering 

It cannot always be said that to the retail grower depending on 
a local trade annuals bring much of a profit in dollars and cents 
when grown outdoors during Summer; yet, as there is a demand 
for cut flowers every day and as we no longer consider dull Sum- 
mer months unavoidable for the man who keeps on pushing and 
carries a display , cooler full of fresh flowers during July, August 
and September, annuals ought to be grown. 

Your customers don't want Roses and Carnations during Sum- 
mer for every purpose. For table and house decorations so-called 
Summer flowers have the call. A basket or vase full of Summer 
Larkspur, Salpiglossis or Scabiosa is often preferred to the best 
Roses you carry, and either of these three can be made use of to 
good advantage in a spray or a floral wreath, if you add a few sprays 
of the annual Gypsophila. I fully realize that the country florist 
meets with cases where if he doesn't use Roses, Lihes or some other 
flowers grown under glass in a pillow or other design, some of his 
customers who have plenty of Summer flowers in their own gardens 
feel that they aren't getting their money's worth. But these cases, 
after all, are only exceptions. 

Every florist should have a good-sized space on his grounds 
devoted to annuals and have it a mass of colors all Summer. It's 
a great way of advertising. It makes people passing by think of 
flowers and that is what you want. Make your establishment a 
show place, it doesn't matter so much what your annuals consist 
of so long as they make a show and are planted or arranged for the 
best effect. 

At present we grow only a small portion of the many different 
varieties of desirable annuals and, at that, only the better known 
ones. The average florist again sifts them down to a very few, 
but of late years he has been adding more to the list which up to a 
few years ago usually consisted solely of Asters and Sweet Peas. 
There was a time when people didn't ask for anything else, but it is 
different now. 

We will here mention some of the more important varieties 
best adapted for cut flowers: Acroclinium, Ageratum, Antirrhinum, 
Aster, Calendula, Calliopsis, Candytuft, Carnation (Marguerite), 
Centaurea, Clarkia, Cosmos, Eschscholtzia, Globe Amaranth, 
Gaillardia, Gypsophila, Helianthus, Helichrysum, Hunnemannia, 
Larkspur, Lupine, Marigold, Nasturtium, Salvia, Salpiglossis, 
Scabiosa, Schizanthus, Sweet Peas, Stocks, Zinnia. 



ANNUALS AND WHAT THEY DO 



183 




Fig. 64. — AjwruALS in the Hotbeds in Apml. When Spring arrives these annuals 
make as good — ^yes, better — ^headway here than they would in the most uptodate 
greenhouse. Hotbeds and coldframes with plenty of sash for protection are always 

good investments 



Annuals for Flowering Under Glass 

In many instances a florist will struggle along, trying to grow 
and make profitable a bench of Roses or perhaps giganteum Lilies 
for Easter, when the same space devoted to Calendulas, Schizanthus 
or some other annual would require but half the work or expense 
and bring him in good returns. 

If you supply a retail trade you have found out that, as a rule, 
people during the Winter and Spring months not only don't object 
to, but often ask for, so-caUed old-fashioned flowers. They are apt 
to caU them "old-fashioned," comparing them with the American 
Beauty or Columbia Rose or the latest in Carnations. The most 
valuable customers you have are not the ones you see around 
Christmas or at Easter buying $25 baskets, but rather those to 
whom you send each month a statement which is paid promptly. 
Those who purchase flowers every week may not be a great many, 
but you can depend upon them. The man who has enough of 



184 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

such patronage really doesn't need worry about how good or bad 
his Christmas or Easter business turns out. A steady demand all 
through the year is what counts, and to supply this sort of demand 
you must grow on or carry as great a variety of stock as possible. 

Your customers may get tired of Calendulas by August, but 
let a couple of months go by and they will be just as eager to get 
them as ever, and that holds good with almost any of the so-called 
annuals. The retail grower with a bench full of Sweet Peas starting 
to flower in December has as valuable crop as any Rose he could 
grow, and so with other things. Even on a small scale you can 
have Schizanthus in full flower for Christmas and sell them all with 
a margin of profit as great as, or greater than you could hope to 
reaUze out of a bench of red Carnations which you have tried to 
force by holding the house at 55 deg. And so it goes until Spring. 
You wUl have a hard job making a customer take Roses when by 
the end of February you can cut your Lupines grown in a house at 
48 deg. ; and when the Stocks come into flower in March, everybody 
wants them. ' 

It isn't that any of these annuals ever can replace either Roses 
or Carnations, or that those growing Roses or Carnations suc- 
cessfuUy and making money at it should grow annuals instead; 
but it will pay those who cannot, for instance, very weU handle Roses 
or ship them so they wiU arrive in good shape, to go more heavily 
into annuals. Let them be one of your main crops. Almost all of 
them can get along in a cool house, and even if you don't cut a 
great many flowers during Midwinter you are bound to make up 
for it later on. 



Annuals for Growing Under Glass 

Perhaps the list of annuals grown extensively under glass 
comprises only about a half dozen varieties, yet there are a good 
many more which can be grown successfully. The following list 
doesn't embrace even half of those available — only those that are 
best known. It is up to the florist who is interested in annuals 
to constantly keep on looking for something new or out of the 
ordinary and when he finds it to try it out. You cannot get too 
much of an assortment and it always pays to bring forward some- 
thing the other fellow hasn't got. Never before was the public more 
anxious and ready to pay well for the unusual; it is just a matter for 
you to supply it. Let us start the fist with the Antirrhinums (Snap- 
dragons). Although they really belong to the perennials and are 
usually grown from cuttings, we treat them as annuals, and usually 
class them as such. Other annuals are: Ageratum, Calendula, 
Galliopsis, Candytuft, Centaurea (among these the double Corn- 
flower, both the blue and the pink, Sweet Sultans and C. suaveolens), 



ANNUALS FOR UNDER GLASS 185 

Glarkia, Didiscus, Dimorphotheca, Eschscholtzia, Gaillardia, Gypso- 
phila, Hunnemannia, Larkspur, Lupine, Marigold, Nasturtium, 
Myosotis, Nemesia, Mignonette, Pansy, Poppy, Salpiglossis, Schi- 
zanthus, and Sweet Peas. That makes over two dozen — ^enough to 
hold the average florist for awhile. 

Notes on the culture of all the above sorts, for both outdoor 
and indoor growing, will be found under their respective alphabetical 
headings in Part II of this book. 



AQUATICS 

pOR those who desire to go into the interesting subject of 
^ aquatics or water plants more deeply, I cannot do better than refer 
them to the chapter that treats of it in "Plant Culture," by Geo. 
W. OHver. The following notes pertaining to aquatics are written 
from my own experience and observation and are mainly intended 
to help the florist located in the smaUer town, where most of his 
customers have either large or small grounds surrounding their 
homes, see the opportunities in talking Lily-pond, pool or water 
gardens. Any one of these opens up a paying side line. 

The landscape gardener wiU hardly consider a planting plan 
fuUy developed without a water effect of some kind. It tends to 
make the picture complete and when you are called upon to make 
suggestions in regard to laying out even a 50-ft. lot, you should 
bear this in mind. Grounds are never too small to have a Uttle 
water garden, even if it only consists of a half-barrel sunk into the 
lawn with a Water Lily in it. To my mind, there is nothing more 
restful than a rustic seat under a spreading tree, overlooking an open 
sweep of lawn and a pool with its surface partly covered with the 
leaves and different colored flowers of Nymphaeas, with a background 
of rocks over which a small stream of water finds its way to the pool, 
and with stately conifers behind it and shrubs and perennials 
along its sides. This appeals to the tired business man and you 
should be able not only to describe such a picture to the owner of 
a home ground, but also to carry it out in reality. 

Such pools should in size always be in accordance with the 
surroundings, but they can be made in endless shapes. The fact 
that you can successfully grow and flower a Nymphaea in ten inches 
of good sofl in a half-barrel wiU really give a good idea of what is 
required in the construction of a pond, pool or water garden. While 
the so-caUed LUy pond in ."a formal garden needs to be formal in 
outUne to correspond with the garden itself, the average pool with 
water plants in it should have irregular outhnes and be bowl-shaped 
inside. If constructed of a 6-in. layer of reinforced concrete on six 
inches of cinders and provided with a drain outlet, even a pool 
ten feet in. diameter won't crack over Winter. Larger pools, of 



186 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 65. — How Lovely is a Lily Pool ! The only thing that could possibly add 
to this setting would be a light planting around the margin of the pond. Note the 
fine Hydrangeas in the rear and the Boston Ivy on the building 



course, should be of heavier concrete. Draining such a pool in late 
Fall would mean the loss of whatever Lilies or other aquatics are 
planted. The only way to avoid this is to cover the entire pool 
with boards and other material so as to keep the frost out, and the 
following May open up the drain, clean out the pool and refill 
it with fresh water. Usually a pool is made from eighteen to twenty- 
four inches deep in the center and contains a frame made of 2-in. 
plank twelve inches wide, ranging in diameter from eighteen inches 
up. This frame is filled with good soil and the Lilies or whatever 
else you wish are planted in iti 



Water Plants with but Little Water 

There are occasions — we have met them — when an owner will 
object to two feet of water on account of there being small children 
who might fall into it. If this difficulty confronts you, a good 
showing of Lilies can be had in eight or ten inches of water — if you 
provide a depression for the plants in the center of the pool. For 
instance, let us take a pool, oval-shaped, say ten feet long by five or 
six feet wide. When you have completed- the excavation and are 
ready for the cinders, make another hole in the center twelve inches 



WATER PLANTS WITH LITTLE WATER 187 

deep and large enough around to hold a 12- to 18-in. sewer pipe. 
Insert the pipe with the bell up ; this will give you twelve inches 
of pipe above the sub-grade (that is, if the pipe is of the usual 
length, twenty-four inches), six inches of cinders and six inches 
of concrete. This, when your pool is finished will bring the upper 
edge of the pipe even with the iottom of the pool. If you put a 
4-in. layer of concrete in the bottom of the pipe, it should be water- 
tight. Later on put in ten inches of good soil and decomposed 
manure in which plant pink and white Nymphseas, one of each, 
then fill it up with water. You still can, if desired, place 1- by 
2-in. wooden strips over the pipe, fitting them into the bell, to 
prevent any small child from falling into it. 

If you have provided the pool with a drain, you can, if you 
like, let all the water out except what is in the sewer pipe. This can 
be left alone and whatever hardy LiUes you have planted in it will 
overwinter nicely as long as you place enough protection over the 
pipe and at the same time keep the drain of the pool open so that 
any rain or snow water overflowing the pipe will find a quick outlet. 

It hardly pays the florist to try and overwinter tender Water 
Lilies. You can obtain started plants reasonably enough and when 
planted out by or around the first of June they wiU pay for them- 
selves weU the first season. There are two things Nymphaeas enjoy— 
a good sofl, as long as their roots are confined, and a warm spot. 
You cannot grow them in the shade. Always bear in mind that 
your water garden should be located in a sunny spot, and don't 
feed it with a constant stream of cold water. 

In constructing a LUy pond of any size, you won't be successful 
with a sandy formation if you don't use concrete; but where there 
is a clay subsoil, by puddling or plastering the bottom and walls 
of the pond with the stiff clay, it can be made almost watertight 
as long as water is kept in the pond so as not to allow the sun to 
bake and crack the clay lining. 



A Short List of Water Plants 

The common hardy Water Lily is Nymphsea odorata, of which 
type there are several improved sorts; A'^. odorata W. B. Shaw, 
which has large pink, sweet-scented flowers, and N. odorata gigantea 
are among them. Nymphsea gloriosa has deep pink flowers. N. 
marliacea chromatella is a good yeUow, and there are several others. 
If you can provide a Lily pond without too much expense it wiU 
pay to grow almost any of the above sorts for cut flowers. 

Among the tender Nymphaeas there are some beautiful blue 
and violet-blue kinds, such as TV. daubenyana, N. zanzibariensis and 
N. Pennsylvania. N. zanzibariensis rosea and N. Mrs. G. W. Ward 



188 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

are good pink ones. While these flower during the day there are 
ten or twelve night-blooming ones, among them, N. dentata superba, 
perhaps the largest white Nymphaea grown; N. rubra rosed, almost 
red; N. Geo. Hust'er, crimson, and N. kewensis, a light pink. For 
the permanent Lilypo'nd the Egyptian Lotus {Nelumbium speciosum), 
with its yeUow flowers, is beautiful. 

For pond or pool, if you want a little more variety, fill a few 
bulb pans with the variegated Iris, or rather Sweet Flag {Acorus 
japonica mriegata). This plant, with its green and white leaves, is 
always beautiful, hardy, and will do nicely in pots if you cannot 
plant it out; the same is true of the UmbreUa Plant (Cyperus 
alternifolius) where you cannot use to advantage the taUer and 
heavier growing sort, Cyperus Papyrus. For the shallow pool 
described above, by aU means plant a few Water Poppies {Limm- 
charis Humboldiii) and a few Water Hyacinths (Eichhornia crassipes 
major). There are many other desirable plants, not alone those 
grown in the water, but such as might be planted to great ad- 
vantage along the edge of a pool. There is no better place than 
that for the Japanese and German Irises, Pennisetum, Arundo, 
Myosotis, Ranunculus, Monarda and Eulalia. For those not 
acquainted with aquatics or the construction of a water garden, 
it won't be much of a job to find out all about it and then get busy. 
Get your customers started. A pool with water plants in it needs 
so little attention during the Summer months, and the day- and 
night-blooming Nymphseas make such a beautiful display and at 
the same time one so different from the Geranium or Salvia bed, 
that you will seldom find anybody disappointed. 

You may make some mistakes — that happens even to those 
who have been at it for many years. But as you go on you wiU 
find that there are so many different ways of creating good effects 
that no two pools you lay out need be alike. 



BASKET AND WINDOW BOX PLANTS 

If there has been a decline in the demand for so-called bedding plants, 
this has been made up many times over in the ever-increasing call for 
the filling of window and porch boxes, hanging baskets and vases. 
The average retail grower can do much to make this feature of his 
work still more popular as well as more profitable. 

'T'HE older the residence section of a city or town, the less use 
our customers living there have for bedding stock, and for this 
reason: When they started to build there was usually a lack of 
shade and they planted trees and shrubs for immediate effect. 
This meant that in a few years the trees became so dense that there 
was no longer any chance for the flower beds in the lawn to do 
well and finally they were done away with. This, to an extent. 



BASKET AND WINDOW BOX PLANTS 



189 




Fig. 66. — The Charm of the Window Box. Trailing plants usually form the 
most important part of a window or veranda box layout, but one can obtain a most 
pleasing effect by using Rosy Mom or some other vEiriety of Petunia, which in a 
short time will completely cover the sides. Note the attractive setting of conifers 



helped the demand for window and porch boxes, but far more 
entitled to credit is the modern architect, who hardly ever designs 
a country or suburban home without providing in his plan places 
for window boxes. Often these boxes are made part of the building, 
being stationary and fitted with Uners. Or large concrete vases 
or urns filled with flowers and trailing plants adorn the terrace or 
front entrance. This idea was copied by the owner of larger grounds 
too shady perhaps for flower beds, and with each succeeding year 
the demand for the filling of window boxes or boxes used for porches 
increased so that today we are supplying more than ever; indeed, 
with many florists this demand forms the most important item dur- 
ing the so-caUed bedding season. It doesn't even stop here, for 
the demand for window boxes in the business district, not only of 
large but also of smaU cities, keeps on increasing from year to year. 
This particular phase of the business, by the way, deserves to 
be pushed by the local florists. It provides a new outlet for stock, 
and not only that, but it helps more than anything else to beautify 
the town you Uve in. Have attractively filled boxes at yom- own 
home, at your store or in front of your establishment, bet an 
example of what can be done and others wiU foUow. Display some 



190 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

well-filled baskets and boxes during the Spring months at your 
greenhouses and you will sell them. 

A lot of people who wouldn't want their lawns cut up with 
beds are wiUing to have porch boxes filled; again, these can be 
used to advantage where there really isn't room for beds. 

Suitable Stock for Filling 

Whether it is a hanging basket or a porch or window box you 
have to fill, the main thing is to have large plants to do it with and 
these in as small pots as possible. 

A porch box has to be good looking at the time you deUver 
it. Your customers don't want to be told that the plants in it may 
be small but that they soon will grow into big specimens; they 
want immediate effects, and it is that result, which to many means 
more than anything else, that must be kept in mind in preparing 
boxes. -' A •; '; 

Of heavy stock and bushy Vincas or Ivies, a few plants will 
fill a box and make it look the way it should; this result cannot 
be obtained with small plants, no matter how many you use. With 
hanging baskets it is the same way. 

The man who has baskets and boxes to fill during Spring cannot 
do better than to grow on stock especially for that purpose; it pays 
him to do so. A large, bushy Geranium in a four-inch pot is wprth 
three or four small ones. If you separate a batch of plants from the 
general run of stock and give them special attention and plenty of 
room so as to get them as bushy as possible, you will appreciate 
them later on. 

There is hardly ever too much space in a basket or box and the 
plant out of the small pot is naturally the one best adapted to do the 
filUng with. Frequently, by feeding your plants, you can prevent 
extra shifting; a Vinca, if allowed to root through the bottom of a 
4-in. pot, doesn't need a shift. Whatever way you do it, avoid 
having plants in pots over four inches in diameter. 

How TO Fill a Basket 

In filling hanging baskets for a porch, the main thing is to select 
plants that can stand the maximum of abuse. Hardly ever do you 
sell such baskets to a customer where at one time or other during 
the Summer months they don't get neglected, and with the Uttle 
soil contained in a 12- or 14-in. wire basket it doesn't take much to 
ruin the plants. There is nothing quite as hardy for a basket in 
the way of a trailing plant as the English Ivy — that is, if you can . 
get enough for the basket, for this Ivy will make it more expensive 
than Vincas, Glechomas, Maurandias or almost anything else. 



HOW TO FILL A BASKET 191 

What you use in the center of a basket is, after all, not nearly as 
important as to have the sides of the basket well covered. 

A beautiful effect for a partly shaded porch can be created by 
filling a basket soUd with Fuchsia "Trailing Queen." These Fuchsias 
will flower all Summer and completely cover the basket by the end 
of the season. Another good subject is the trailing or weeping 
Lantana, which is ideal for baskets. Still another is Rosy Morn 
Petunia, or the new purple one. Balcony Queen. Of course, any of 
these will prove a success only when properly taken care of. 

Nemesia, Thunbergia, Maurandia, Lobelia, double Alyssum, 
Dusty Miller, Achyranthes, Coleus, Guphea, and Nierembergia— 
all are among the general run of plants used for baskets and boxes. 

No wire basket should ever be filled and deUvered the same 
day. Do your filling a week or so before and go over your baskets 
once or twice. The sheet moss along the edges usually settles 
down with the soil after watering and more should be put on, or, 
in other words, a regular ridge made along the edge so as to hold 
the water that the plants may get some good out of it. To send out 
a basket with the rim above the moss is wrong and before long will 
cause trouble. Use plenty of moss for lining and only the best of 
soil, and don't crowd the plants too much. When filling a basket 
don't start in the center. Get the traihng plants in first — they 
mean more than anything else ; no matter how well filled the center, 
if you are short on trailing plants, it won't be much of a basket. 
Be sure to get the sides well covered. You can, if necessary, make 
use of the bushy plants for the center and have a good looking 
basket. 

In window or porch boxes we use about the same variety of 
stock as for baskets or vases. Of late years, however, many orders 
have called for just Ivies and pink or red Geraniums, or Vincas, 
variegated or green, and perhaps Petunias. A good many people 
object to a mixture of stock — they want either a red, pink, blue, or 
white effect, and there are times when it isn't very easy to get them 
to decide which. However, a box filled with English Ivies, Poite- 
vine Geraniums and a few Boston Ferns or Grevilleas makes as 
attractive an arrangement as anything you can mention. Rosy 
Morn Petunias make a wonderfiil display if not exposed to the 
broiling sun all day. It used to be all red Geraniums, but the 
people got tired of that; at present it is pretty much all pink, but 
no one can tell when things may change again. 



Variety in Window Box Filling 

Those who use only two or three porch boxes usually call for a 
variety of stock. This means the variegated Vinca along the edge, 



192 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



with a touch of blue, such as Lobelia speciosa, perhaps, and a few 
double Alyssums. The main planting consists of either pink or 
red Geraniums, some Ageratums, maybe a couple of Marguerites 
and the same of Dusty Miller. Coleus is not used as much as in 
former times yet, if given room and if the right colors are selected, 
it is all right. I doubt whether any plant can stand more and 
still look presentable than Geraniums, and usually when a customer 
has had her way for two or three years in selecting just what she 
wants to suit her taste and color scheme, she is very apt to come 
back to Geraniums and use them ever afterward. 

When filling a box or vase always see to it that you get soil in 
between the rootbaUs of the plants. This is really necessary if 
you want the plants to do well; work it in with your fingers and 
get in all you can, but always leave the surface a Httle below the 
edges to allow for watering. Provide good drainage, use good soil 
and don't crowd, which is not necessary if you have bushy plants to 
fill with. 

For the center of a vase there is nothing to beat Dracxna in- 
divisa. Vl^a it comes to fiUing either a vase or a box in a shady 
position Impatiens is exceU^^BB&ext in order we have the tuberous 

fanc^^Sv 



Begonias, and even the 



fved Caladiums can be used. As- 




f\..^^-—^^^(^ON IN A Bedding Plant. Geranium Jean Viaud is of dwarf 
nafiit and produces extra heavy trusses of large flowers of a soft mauve color all 
bmnmer long. So long as we can offer such Geraniums as this there wiU always be 
a aemand lor them for beddmg, no matter how many other plants there are that 

might take their place 



VARIETY IN WINDOW BOXES 193 

paragus Sprengeri does well in the shade and can be used in boxes as 
well as in baskets. 

Evergreens for Window Boxes 

Here, as with all else, you have to get after your prospective 
customers early in order to land an order for the filling of the frozen 
window boxes with evergreens for Winter effect. 

During the past few years one thing that has put a sort of 
damper on the taking of such orders has been the sharp advance in 
the price of such stock. But even more important, to my mind, 
has been the fact that we don't push hard enough, for there are 
always plenty of people who wouldn't mind the cost if they were 
only reminded at the right time, that is, when the boxes should 
be filled. Another thing, we notice but comparatively few florists 
who make an attempt to show their customers what can be ac- 
complished, by having an attractive display of such boxes at the 
entrance of their places of business. 

People with means are usually willing to spend a f(^ dollars 
for evergreens or conifers rather than le^kat bare or empty window 
boxes until the following Spring; but raie has to go after them if 
he is anxious to land an order. Among the many desirable plants 
one can make use of for the filling of such boxes we might mention 
Arborvitae, Abies, Juniper, Pines, Retinispora, Yew, Cedar and 
Spruce. All of these are discussed in Part II as well as on pages 
204 to 206. 

BEDDING STOCK 

f TNDER bedding plants we class such stock as is used for the 
'-^ planting of flower beds and borders during the late Spring months. 
Years ago, planting used to be confined almost entirely to formal 
beds. It usually meant an open lawn and in the center a round 
bed fiUed with red Geraniums and a border of yellow Coleus; or a 
narrow border running paraUel to the walk or graveled drive with 
red Geraniums down the center and Dusty Miller or SaUeroi 
Geraniums along the edge. With the more extensive use of shrubs 
and perennials, however, the round bed'graduaUy made way for 
the irregular border. The border along the porch which formerly 
had Cannas and Salvias in it, is now filled with Spirxa Vanfwuttei 
or Thunberg's Barberry, the open sweep of lawn is no longer cut 
up with beds, but a planting of evergreens and flowering and 
ornamental shrubs marks the lines of the lot with maybe a border 
next to the lawn of Iris, Peonies, Phloxes and Larkspurs. The 
Uttle beds filled with Vincas or Verbenas disappeared, and for a 
while it almost seemed as if whenever the modern landscape gardener 
had the laying out of new grounds, there wasn't a spot left anywhere 



194 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

for anything in the bedding plant line. However, that wasn't for 
long and while we don't use Geraniums as much as we used to, 
there are many more people who plant something than there were 
thirty years or more ago. Where there was then one window box 
there are now ten in the same block. The perennial border was 
found to present anything but an attractive appearance at certain 
times during Summer without the help of so-called annuals or bed- 
ding plants set between the hardy stock. 

The formal carpet bedding disappeared, but the modern home 
ground has a place set aside for a sort of formal garden with narrow 
beds filled with flowers for cuttings. Here, in former years we used 
for bedding Verbenas, HeUotrope, Lantana, Ageratum, Alyssum, 
Candytuft, and Salvia. Even now once in awhile there is planted 
a border of Geraniums perhaps for no other reason than that they 
can be depended on to be in flower all through the Summer. 

Again we find places where the owner, having had his grounds 
all made over a few years ago, is tired of so much green and no 
flowers. He wants us to pick out a spot for a bright Canna bed or 
one for Geraniums. He thinks he is entitled to a change. Conse- 
quently bedding plants are being sold each year in greater numbers, 
besides the thousands and tens of thousands of perennials. 

The Best Bedding Plants 

For those wanting to start in growing bedding stock. Geraniums 
in pink and red, with a small proportion of whites, head the list of 
desirable plants to grow on. Welf grown Geraniums in full bloom 
always sell and whUe we consider them the best bedders, I beUeve 
as many as are planted in beds — if not more — are used today for 
the fdhng of window and porch boxes, vases and hanging baskets. 

Cannas, while not used as extensively as they should be, are 
becoming a close second to Geraniums and every retail grower 
should push them as bedders. Petunias, both double and single 
sorts, are more grown than ever and with their endless varieties 
and their usefulness not only as bedders, but also for the filling of 
boxes, and in the case of the smaller flowering sorts, along the edge of 
the perennial border, they always make good. Coleus with their 
highly colored leaves iare still used extensively as a border for beds 
and even as small plants are showy. Every florist usually carries 
a stock of them during Spring and finds purchasers for all he grows 
before the bedding season ends. 

As for Begonias for bedding, it is always well to have a stock of 
both the small ever-blooming sorts and the tuberous-rooted, large- 
flowering ones. Of Heliotrope, of which we have today some 
excellent sorts, you wiU want a limited number. Their , beautiful 



THE BEST BEDDING PLANTS 195 

colors and the fragrance of the flowers make them desirable. Im- 
patiens, especially in the light and deep salmon pink sorts, is always 
in demand where a plant is wanted for a shady position; and salable 
plants, when once you have a stock, are as quickly grown on as 
GoleuSi 

Lantanas are more grown for bedding than ever and even if 
the plants don't flower aU Summer in every locality, when they are 
in full bloom during May and June, you can always sell them. Their 
colors and shades are quite different from those of anything else 
we have at that time. 

Lobehas, the single as well as the double sorts, make fine 
border plants for small beds and are easily grown on. 

While we should class aU Geraniums as Pelargoniums, we don't, 
but use this name only for such sorts as are not used for bedding but 
which, while in flower, are by far the showiest. A few of these 
plants such as Easter Greeting and others always sell at good prices 
during the bedding season. 

Pennisetum longistylum makes a fine border plant for the Canna 
bed and gives you a change from the usual Salvia or Goleus edging. 
Salvias are the thing where a glowing mass of red is wanted and 
you are bound to have customers who prefer them to anything else. 

Centaurea gymnocarpa and Pyrethrum aureum are both old 
favorites as border plants and another is the Uttle silver-leaved 
Geranium Mme. SaUeroi. 

Achyranthes and Perilla nankinensis are also old timers in 
foliage plants for borders and it is well to have a stock of them. 

Fuchsias, if planted out in locations that are not too sunny, 
can be used to advantage for bedding, but you will be able to sell 
plants in bloom, just because they are so attractive during May 
and June. 

Verbenas are fine bedders when you want low, free-flowering 
plants and little Vinca rosea and V. alba are a mass of color all Sum- 
mer. Besides these you will want to carry a few Bose Geraniums, 
Lemon Verbenas, Cobxa scandens, Maurandias, Feverfews, and 
Torenias, a good stock of Alternantheras, a few Caladium esculentum, 
some started Tuberoses, Marguerites, both single and double, 
double Alyssum, Cuphea, Agetatums, Santolina and Mesembry- 
anthemum. Whfle these don't all belong to the bedding stock 
group you usuaUy have caU for thein during the bedding season 
and often the customer who wants to look through your houses 
wiU purchase one or more of all of those plants before he is through, 
just because you have them on hand. During the bedding season 
is the only time of the year you wiU have a chance to sell such 
material and to my mind it takes but little more work and planning 



196 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




THE BEST BEDDING PLANTS 197 

to include all of those plants in the stock you carry as they don't 
differ much as regards treatment during the Spring months. 

BULBS 

No matter how large or small your establishment, how good or poor 
your facilities for growing cut flowers, so-called Dutch bulb stock can 
always be made a profitable crop for those who retail what they grow. 
"THE florist who can manage to have a supply of French-grown 
* Narcissi and Roman Hyacinths in flower from early December 
on, followed by English and HoUand stock, home-grown Freesias, Japan 
Lihes and Gahfornia or Florida Gallas, can do business every day 
without much else. While actually not all of these grow from 
bulbs, the florist usuaUy caUs them such. The Dutch bulb stock 
to which some of the best belong is all grown from bulbs, such as 
Narcissi, Tulips and Hyacinths. 

We no sooner get through with the last Ghrysanthemums than 
our patrons begin to ask if we haven't some Spring flowers ; and they 
won't grow tired of them for the next six months to come. 



Upon What Bulb Success Depends 

With aU the many varieties on hand and their easy culture, 
there isn't any good reason why even the smaU florist shouldn't 
make it a point to always have a supply on hand during the Winter 
months. The foUowing are the main requirements if one would be 
successful: Plant as early as you can in order to have well-rooted 
plants before you bring them into heat for forcing. If you have no 
bulb ceUar, bring the flats, pots and pans in which you planted 
the bulbs, in where you can cover them with 10 or 12 in. of sofl. 
After they have been thoroughly watered put each variety by itself 
and provide a heavy wooden stake with the name of the variety and 
the number of bulbs (these stakes should be long enough so that 
they can be seen above the soil) and an additionad heavy layer of 
strawy manure which should be placed on top of the soil as soon as 
Winter sets in. Examine the soil every once in awhile, for it should 
be kept moist at all times and during a dry FaU has to be watered. 
It is always weU to place boards to set the flats or pans on, which 
will give you a clean bottom when bringing them in later on. 

To attempt to force either Hyacinths, Tulips or Narcissi without 
their being thoroughly pot- or root-bound wiU always result in 
failure. For early forcing a dark place and high temperature are 
needed in order to obtain flowers with reasonably long stems; this 
condition is usually provided by using space below some bench 
darkened with boards, heavy paper or bags — the darker the better— 
and a steady heat of from 70 to 80 deg. Overhead heat is to be pre- 



198 FRITZ BAHR'3 COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




SUCCESS WITH BULB STOCK 199 

ferred; setting^the flats on heating pipes often results in blind buds. 
Applying water heated to 80 or 90 deg. is also of benefit. While 
such treatment is necessary with stock for December and early 
January, for later use and as you approach the natural time of flow- 
ering, less shading and heat will give good results and the actual 
time required keeps on getting shorter. 

It is always well to go slow in forcing extra early stock when 
you lack facilities; for example, it doesn't pay to get two dozen 
good salable flowers out of eighty bulbs planted in a flat, which is 
a th"ng that may easily happen with Tuhps or Trumpet Major 
Narcissi; each succeeding week makes the forcing easier and gives 
you a greater percentage of perfect flowers, but after aU, it isn't a 
hard matter to construct a small forcing frame or box even in the 
smaU establishment, and if you start out with well-rooted plants 
of the right sorts and attend to them properly you have as good a 
chance to succeed as the man who forces on a large scale. 

Making Dutch Bulbs Pay 

From the time the first Trumpet Major Narcissi comes into 
bloom until the last Darwin Tulips are cut outdoors in June, the re- 
taU grower has use for such flowers every day; there is a demand for 
this stock and it is one of the crops he can and should grow on, 
himself, and make pay. 

What the bulbs cost isn't of as great importance as the ques- 
tion of arranging matters so as to have a regular supply of flowers 
right along; this is the whole secret of success with bulb stock from 
the retafl growers' standpoint. Try to avoid the oftmade mistake 
of having a dozen flats of La Reine Tulips pr Golden Spur Narcissi 
one week and none for the next three weeks. Every time you let 
that happen you lose money, for in such cases you most likely have 
more flowers at one time than you know what to do with, and then 
again, have to buy them when you should cut your own. To have 
to buy cut bulb stock is a good thing only when you haven't enough 
of your own, when occasions arise calling for more than you can 
cut yourself; but not when this is due to poor management on your 
part in not timing your own properly. From the end of January 
on it requires in the neighborhood of three weeks to get a flat of 
Tulips or Narcissi into bloom, from the day it is brought into heat. 
That is enough to go by in planning at the time of ordering your 
supply how many of each variety you should plant, so as not to go 
too heavily into it to start with. 

If you arrange it so that, for instance, you have a flat of La 
Reine TuUps in good shape to cut from each week, but find weeks 
when you need three times as many, well and good; buy them. The 
more you seU the better for you, and you are justified in planting 
more another year. On the other hand, if some week you don't sell 



200 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

all YOU have of this regular supply, if you cannot make use of them 
in some way, you are but little out. But to bring m eight, ten, or 
twelve flats of one variety at a time and trust to good luck to get 
rid of them, is folly and poor management, and makes the forcing 
of bulbs unprofitable. 

The Care of Bulb Stock in Flower 

The flowers of bulb stock coming out of the hot or dark forcing 
box or frame are not ready for the counter, but should be placed in 
a cool, shaded place for a few days to properly finish and harden 
off before they are put on display. 

In a hot, sunny place almost any of these flowers are gone in 
a couple of days, but give them a cool, shaded house, a shed where 
there is no danger of frost, or a cellar with just a little light, and they 
will be good for a week or ten days. A place to finish the flowers in is 
as necessary as anything else. Take Murillo Tulips: Freshly brought 
from below the bench, colorless and soft, they don't mean much, but 
give them three or four days in a cool place and you have fine- 
colored, beautiful flowers; and so with practically all the others. 



Bulb Stock for Easter 

Easter, whether it comes early or late, is a time which to the 
retail grower of bulb stock means a great deal; it is far too important 
to figure on using for that week whatever is left to bring in to he 
forced. If you have a nice lot of Narcissi and Tulips coming in 
for Easter to cut from, they sell. Pans of Hyacinths, Darwins, 
double and single Tuhps, single and double Narcissi, aU in pots and 
pans, find a ready sale and will make up for other items you may be 
short of. 

Make it a point to push bulb stock for Easter; have enough of 
it and provide a proper place to keep it in good shape. Instead 
of working in the dark, plan the previous Fall, mark down just how 
many miniature Hyacinths are to be grown in pans for Easter, how 
many large Hyacinths in pots, how many pans of double yeUow, 
pink, and white Tulips, how many pans of different sizes of some of 
the many beautiful large flowering Narcissi, how many flats of Tu- 
lips and Narcissi to cut from, and then plant accordingly. Don't 
stop there, but separate this stock from your bulbs to be forced during 
Winter and put them by themselues outdoors; reserve them just for 
Easter forcing. No matter what happens or how short you may be 
of stock before that time, for Easter— one of the great flower days 
of the yeai^you should certainly be prepared. 

You may not be able to grow your own Lilies, Rambler Roses or 
Ericas, but you can and should grow your own bulb stock for that 



BULB STOCK FOR- EASTER 



201 




Fig. 70. — An Easter Lily Basket. Such 
an arrangement will always find plenty of 
admirers around Easter, for Lilies and 
Primroses in a graceful basket make a 
thoroughly pleasing combination 



day— that is, if you want to 
make money. You can ship a 
Hydrangea, Rose, Lily or Bou- 
gainvillea, but you cannot near- 
ly so well ship bulb stock in 
flower any distance. And it 
requires so little trouble to bring 
such stock into bloom for Easter 
— it might be done even without 
the help of a greenhouse — that 
every florist should be found 
weU prepared with a full as- 
sortment for that date. With 
Easter coming around the first 
of April and no room to spare, if 
the weather isn't too cold, a 
good way is to let the plants, 
whether in pans or flats, come 
along in a deep coldframe, out- 
doors; here, with sashes and 
plenty of shade on top, they 
can be kept perfectly, much 
better, even, than in a cool 



greenhouse. Any frame is good enough so long as you can keep the 
frost out of it. During a hot speU such as we often experience 
during the Easter week, with cool nights and shade you can keep a 
deep coldframe down to 45 deg. without trouble. 



The Retailing of Bulbs by the Florist 

This is merely a side hne as yet and is almost entirely over- 
looked by the average retail grower. 

If you supply the plants in Spring for the filling of flower beds 
and borders, you have the best of chances to land the order for 
bulbs to be planted in Fall for Spring flowering. We know there are 
seed houses aU over the country specializing in that line and sending 
out attractive catalogs, but in spite of that, you can get your share 
of orders if you only go after them. The great majority of people 
will not think of a bed of Tulips except when they see them in full 
bloom, and, strange to say, we have folks come into the store in 
May, wanting to know if they can have a bed planted. If you want 
to have your customers buy bulbs from you, advertise, send out 
an attractive folder, caU them up, remind them of the fact that the 
Fall is the time for planting if they desire a show the foUow ng Spring. 

I always look at the selling of bulbs to one's customers in this 
light: There may not be a great deal of profit in handling them, 



202 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

but as long as you have to buy for your own use, whatever you retail 
will help pay for what you use yourself. I think that is a good way 
to look at it, and if you have to send a man to plant the bulbs, 
there again is a margin of profit, or should be, and you also are 
reasonably sure that your customer will be well pleased with the 
show of flowers for the money spent. 

Special Schemes for Boosting the Bulb Business 

In every town, no matter how many bulbs are shipped in from 
the large cities, there is always a chance for the local florist to sell 
more and make it a paying side line. It is just a matter of going 
out after orders, and not sitting down until they happen to come in. 
Every retail grower with a little store for the selling of cut flowers 
and plants should make it his business, when the first Freesias and 
Paperwhites arrives to start his display of bulbs and, as the Dutch 
bulbs arrive, to keep on adding to the assortment. Even if you can 
display them only in new, clean, 10- or 12-in. bulb pans, each nicely 
labeled, you can make them attractive. Get a few colored photos 
or pictures of some of the difl'erent sorts, have some low dishes filled 
with pebbles and Paperwhite Narcissi, a basket of Chinese Sacred 
Lilies, a few extra-size Dutch Hyacinths in glasses; get a few photo- 
graphs of beds of Tulips or Hyacinths in bloom; put a weekly ad 
in your home town newspaper ; enclose with your monthly statements 
a neat folder ; have the clerk in the store call attention to the display 
of bulbs on hand ; talk bulbs to those who buy flowers, and you can- 
not help but take orders and sell stock. 

The more bulbs are planted in your town, no matter where they 
come from, the more will be sold the following year, and if you are 
in the retail business you should sell them. What is the difference, 
whether you grow them on yourself and sell the flowers, or seU the 
bulbs, as long as you make a fair margin of profit, provided the one 
doesn't interfere with the other? Don't be under the impression 
that a customer who purchases three dozen Paperwhite bulbs for 
inside flowering will buy just that many less flowers from you during 
December; no, it is usually just the opposite — she wiU buy more. 
And if she wants Paperwhites and you don't seU them to her, some- 
body else will. Sell where there is a chance to sell; the man who 
hangs his head and finds fault because so many bulbs are shipped into 
his town from the outside, usually has himself to blame. 

Forget about the other fellow; make a display, advertise and 
back it up with good bulbs, and a reasonable price; push and then 
push some more. Do that and before long the result will be that 
more bulbs than ever wiU be sold in your town, more peopl&"will be 
wanting them, and you will, as I have, come to the conclusion that 
there is money in handling them. 



BULBS AND THEIR POSSIBILITIES 203 

Dutch Bulbs for Late Flowering 

With so many fine Tulips especially adapted for late flowering, 
those who consider Easter the closing season for bulb stock, as far 
as the florist is concerned, miss a good deal. UsuaUy a few flats 
of bulbs come in after that date, such as perhaps have been over- 
looked outdoors, or were planted very late, but no special effort is 
made to supply the demand for May and early June. Almost all 
such stock, whether TuUps or Narcissi, can be handled either out- 
doors in the open or in frames and can be made to pay weU if properly 
handled. With the help of a frame, glass, and shade sash, you can 
bring a planting of bulbs into flower several weeks ahead of those 
left to themselves, or you can hold them back a few days; this to 
the florist means a better chance to make them pay. It will prove a 
good investment for any florist to plant some Narcissi or late flower- 
ing Tulips in beds 5 ft. in dianieter outdoors; cover some in early 
Spring with frames and sashes and so have them come in ahead of 
those not covered; and have another lot which with temporary 
frames, shutters or other shading, are protected from the sun and 
thereby kept back. 

Another way to use late flowering bulbs to advantage is to 
recommend them for planting in groups along the shrub borders 
and in the perennial bed. We have seasons when some of the Darwin 
or Cottage Tulips will bloom as late as June, a time when there is 
but Uttle in the way of perennials and when what there is of Iris, 
Columbines, etc., will not be interfered with; the same is true in 
the shrub border. 

If perchance you have to submit to a customer during Fall 
a specification and estimate for the planting of such borders, always 
include the planting of a certain amount of such bulbs. It pays. 

TWELVE DESIRABLE CONIFERS FOR THE FLORIST TO 

GROW ON 

IT TAKES years to grow conifers from seed until you have stock 
* ofany size to sell, but, on the other hand, if you should happen 
to have suitable land and let your nurseryman supply you each 
year with a few transplanted seedlings for planting out in rows, 
before you know it you will have suitable stock for the filling of 
window boxes. A little later there will be 2-, 3-, and 4-ft. stock to 
offer, and I don't know to what the average florist located near a 
city or in a town could possibly devote his land to better advantage. 
This is especially so in the case of the young man who, in a growing 
neighborhood, has a chance to purchase a few buflding lots, maybe 
located a little outside of town; lots which can be bought cheap. 
If he were to plant these with nothing but Norway Spruce, it would 
be weU worth while and would bring good returns in a short time. 



204 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 71. — ^The Usbptjl Conifers. The Blue Spruce makes one of the finest of 

specimen conifers for lawn planting. It never shows at its best when crowded 

in with other stock, but wants to be alone with plenty of room for development. 

AH too often we find it planted too close to the drive or walk 



Wherever home grounds are being laid out, whether large or 
small, there is always a place for conifers, and plants not sold this 
year simply grow into more money if left in the nursery or trans- 
planted so that they can become specimens. You cannot afford to 
crowd them, no matter what the variety, if you want perfectly shaped 
plants, and that, of course, is what counts with conifers. 

Norway Spruce {Picea excelsa) 

I start the list with the Norway Spruce, not because it can be 
compared with many other beautiful varieties there are, but because 
it is one of the most useful of all. It is a fast grower, which means 
that from small, transplanted seedlings, eight to ten inches high, 
you can get suitable plants for the filling of window boxes the 
second year. Later on you can offer the larger stock at a more 
reasonable price than is possible with almost any of the other sorts. 
There are times when you have to fill an order calling for the largest 
evergreens for massing in a screen at the smallest possible price 
and that is when you want Norway Spruce. Also bear in mind that 
each year more and more specimens of this plant are wanted for 
Christmas, either in or out of tubs. 



TWELVE DESIRABLE CONIFERS 205 

Arborvit^ {Thuja occidentalis) 
While not suitable for quite so many purposes, the Arbor- 
vitae comes next in usefulness as an inexpensive evergreen. It is 
good in the form of small plants in window boxes for Winter effects; 
it is good for hedges a little later, and it is good as a specimen still 
later. 

Red Cedar {Juniperus virginiana) 

There are many sections where you cannot keep Boxwoods out- 
doors all Winter, which really is the time you want them most. A 
good substitute, hardy almost anywhere, is the Red Cedar. It 
makes a splendid specimen plant even in a small state and when 
from four to six feet high it is ideal for planting at either side of a 
front entrance of a residence, on a terrace, or on the open lawn. 

Colorado Blub Spruce {Picea pungens) 

The Blue Spruce is one of the most stately of conifers and as 
expensive as any. You wiU sell but one as against a hundred or 
more of Norway Spruce. Yet it always pays to have at least a few 
on hand and to my mind it is better to have your nurseryman supply 
you with plants about eighteen inches or so in height of the true 
blue color than to buy hundreds of small seedlings of which only a 
very small percentage wiU turn out blue. 

Balsam Fir {Abies balsamea) 

The Balsam, with its graceful branches, you can use to ad- 
vantage both when small and later on for mass planting. Like all 
others, when the plants get to be 3 ft. and over in height, they need 
room if you want them good all the way around. 

Hemlock {Tsuga canadensis) 

Since it is as useful as the Balsam, it is always well to have a 
stock of different sizes on hand. 

Sabine Juniper {Juniperus Sabina) 
The Sabine Juniper, with its graceful habit, is one of the showiest 
of all conifers. It is especially adapted for planting in the fore- 
ground of taller growing sorts, but it is equally as good treated as a 
single specimen. 

Dwarf Mountain Pine {Pinus Mugho) 
The Mugho Pine, while not as graceful as the Sabine Jumper, 
is every bit as useful. There are plenty of occasions where you can 
use it to advantage. 



206 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Scotch Pine {Pinus syhestris) 
The Scotch Pine should be far more extensively grown. It is 
a splendid evergreen and grows more beautiful the larger it gets. 

White Pine {Pinus Strobvs) 

In many sections of the East and Middle West there is room for 
thousands of White Pines to help beautify our Winter^ landscapes. 
Even those who grow on conifers on a small scale should, do their 
part to encourage the. planting of this Pine. Even in the smaller 
sizes you want it for variety's sake if for nothing else. 

American Yew {Taxus canadensis) 

Try to grow a few Taxus to round out the assortment for your 
patrons to choose from. They are hardy and showy and would 
become more popular if people could see more of them. - 

CoNCOLOR Fir {Abies concolor) 

' For windbreaks or places where the owner doesn't care how 
high his evergreens will ultimately grow, these Firs will fill the 
bill. But you can also use them to advantage when in a small state. 

FIFTEEN DESIRABLE HARDY FERNS 

'T'HE florist depending on a local trade and making bedding 
*■ stock a specialty is bound to have calls for hardy ferns and should 
get acquainted with a dozen or so varieties that he can recommend 
to his patrons. 

Hardly ever have we call for hardy ferns to be planted on the 
smaller new grounds, particularly building sites where there is a 
lack of trees. There the question of lawn, trees and suitable shrubs 
comes first ; but as the trees and shrubs keep on growing and develop- 
ing, and shady spots and nooks are created, the owner begins to 
think about hardy ferns to take the place of flower beds or borders 
where, for want of sunlight. Geraniums and other bedding plants 
don't do as well as they once did. Or the owner may feel like making 
changes. There are, of course, places where the natural conditions 
in the beginning are ideal for ferns and flowering hardy plants 
adapted for shady positions. 

Anyway, it usually doesn't take much to create a spot where 
hardy ferns can be used to good advantage. There is, of course, 
this disadvantage about a fern bed: that many varieties, including 
some beautiful ones, begin to look anything but attractive toward 
the end of Summer. But there are many others that are evergreen; 
and again there are plants such as Sedums, Hypericums, Lilies and 
others which, if necessary, can be used in connection with ferns to 



DESIRABLE HARDY FERNS 



207 




Fig. 72.— A Well-known Native Hardy Fern. The Christmas fern is really 
a Polystichum, but it is usually called Aspidiam acrostichoides by florists who sell 
tons of it for holiday decorations. It is truly hardy, remaining green under the 

snow all Winter 



make a showy bed possible all Summer. I don't mean on grounds 
where extensive plantings and mass effects are being carried out. 
But on the smaller home grounds with which the florist is apt to 
come in contact such combinations might well be considered. Where 
there isn't too much shade you can use, for instance, Aquilegias, 
ferns, and Iris. This is not to say that all three will do their best 
under the same conditions, but they can be made to present an 
attractive combination in partial shade. 

Conditions that Suit Ferns 

Whether you go East, South, North, or along the Northwest 
or West you will find magnificent ferns in their natural environ- 
ment. There are but few of the most desirable ones that do not 
appreciate the company of trees, and the leafmold which for centu- 
ries has been forming at their base. That alone is sufficient to tell 
anyone what ferns require in order to do well. Give them the 
best soil, and the mellowest, you can; a liberal amount of sand never 
hurts any of them, and some of the taller growing varieties don't 
object in the least to manure to feed on. 

In many sections, maybe right in your own neighborhood, at 
one time there were beautiful native ferns growing. Usually, as 
sewers, streets, concrete sidewalks and a residence district take the 



^08 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

place of the meadow and the woods, the hardy ferns, wTrilliums, 
Anemones, May Apples, and Hepaticas have to go. But there are 
quite a few of us who after awhile are no longer satisfied with so- 
called cultivated things, and even on a small place and with just a 
little work, hardy ferns and other so-called native favorites can 
be made not only to feel at home, but also to add a great deal to the 
beauty of the grounds themselves. 

Again, frequently a patron will ask your advice as to what to 
do in order to cover up a bare spot on the north side of a residence 
where it is impossible to grow anything in the way of flowers, or 
there may be shady places under trees where no grass will grow. 
It may be that it is desired to retain a part of the grounds in their 
natural state where a few Hazels, Thorns and native Crab Apples 
thrive; for such effects the native Cherry, Plum, Dogwood and 
Elder are as much thought of as all else on the grounds. 

In all such locations ferns may be used to advantage for ground 
covering and what will do well with them are some of the Spring- 
flowering bulbs — Narcissi, Scillas, Snowdrops, and Iris and Mer- 
tensias as well, which while not grown from bulbs, are appropriate 
because of their early Spring flowering character. 

The following list is of course not a complete one, but it will 
help the beginner get busy. With the fifteen varieties named a 
great showing can be made. Here again, of course, the size of the 
grounds, the location, the money to be expended, and the effect 
desired, all play an important part. Furthermore, I don't mean 
to say that a florist should bother about trying to grow on any 
of these ferns himself. It can be done of course, just as we grow 
on other ferns, but there are specialists in the country from whom 
you can obtain good heavy plants of just what you want and some 
even carry potted stock. Let them furnish you with what you 
need each Spring and Fall. 

Personally I prefer Spring planting, but good results can be 
had with most ferns by planting them in Fall. There are times 
when you must fill an order whenever your patron is ready or not 
fill it at all; that may mean to do it almost at any time, and if you 
have potted plants so much the better. However, others moved in 
early Spring, or just before they start to grow will do nicely also. 

Adiantum pedatum (Hardy Maidenhair Fern) 

The hardy Adiantum or Maidenhair Fern is one of the most 
desirable in the long Ust of good ones to select from. We find it 
in shady places and often in soil where even the much coarser 
varieties and those that form heavy crowns, such as Aspidium 
Goldieanum, are hardly ever seen. 



DESIRABLE HARDY FERNS 209 

It hardly ever grows more than fifteen inches in height but 
when once estabhshed it will remain and spread for years. Its 
graceful habit makes it as popular outdoors as Adiantum cuneatum 
is under glass. The best time to plant this fern is in the Spring 
and while, as stated above, we find it in stiff soil, you will have better 
results by using as much leafmold as you can in planting. And 
don't plant it too deep. 

AspiDiuM (Hardy Varieties) 

There are a number of most desirable forms or rather varieties 
of Aspidium, of which we are best acquainted with the so-called 
Wood Fern. All Aspidiums form crowns and when you plant one 
it is always well to set the top of the crown just about even with 
the surface of the loose soil so that it will project just a little after 
the first good watering. A. cristatum Clintonianum is the Crested 
Wood Fern, growing 30 inches or more in height and almost an 
evergreen, even in cold sections. A. Filix-mas, the Male Fern, is 
another strong grower and a most valuable fern, especially for moist 
situations. A. Goldieanum or Goldie's Wood Fern grows three 
feet and more in deep, moist soil and a shady position. A. marginale, 
the Evergreen Wood Fern, is the best for mass effects and ground 
covering and can stand quite a lot of shade. 

AsPLENiUM (Hardy Varieties) 

Among the Aspleniums there are not only fine varieities for 
greenhouse culture, but some for outdoor planting as weU. While 
we will here name but two, there are a half dozen or more all beauti- 
fid and useful wherever there is a fern bed or border to be planted or 
arranged. Asplenium angustifolium (Narrow-leaved Spleenwort) 
grows about two feet in height and has light green, narrow, grace- 
ful fronds. A. Filix-famina is the botanical naine for the well 
known Lady Fern with the finely cut leaflets of its graceful fronds 
which are sometimes fully three feet in length. Shade, moisture 
and good drainage are what it wants in order to do well. 

Asplenium Trichomanes, the Maidenhair Spleenwort, is a beautiful 
little fern hardly ever growing over five or six inches in height. . It 
is just the thing for small fern plantings or rockeries. As it is small 
and dehcate, you should plant it in a well-prepared bed of leafmold 
and sand. When once established it will take care of itself^ but 
you have to give it a fair chance to become established first. Watch , 
the fittle crowns so you don't get them covered with too much 
soil. Have them even with or just a little above the surface. ' 

DiCKSONiA PUNCTiLOBULA (Hay-sccuted Fern) 

There are cases in which the hardy fern bed or border is jjartially 
exposed to sunlight at one time or other during the day;"^ this is 



210 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

most likely to affect particularly the outer edge of the planting. 
There is no better fern to use in such locations than this Dicksonia 
which will thrive not only in the shade, but in sunny positions as 
well. It hardly ever grows over twelve inches in height and does 
not form crowns as do the Aspidiums. It increases by means of 
underground root stalks, and the more mellow the soil (made so 
by mixing in a liberal amount of sand), the more you encourage it 
to grow and spread. 

Onoclea Sthuthiopteris (Hardy Ostrich Fern) 

As the name indicates this is one of the tallest ferns we grow. 
We find it not only in the New England States, but also, in splendid 
form, away up in Minnesota as a partner to Goldie's Wood Fern. 
The sterile fronds may attain a height of four feet and become 
eight inches and more across. Plenty of humus in the soil where 
you plant it wiU be appreciated by this variety. We find it in the 
shade and again exposed to partial sunlight, doing almost equally 
well in both locations. If you have a large planting to make, use 
the Ostrich Fern in the center or as a background allowing not less 
than from eighteen inches to two feet between the individual plants. 
Its graceful, large fronds are most effective when given plenty of 
room for development. 

OsMUNDA ciNNAMOMEA (Hardy Cinnamon Fern) 

If you have a wet spot, perhaps without drainage enough to 
permit other ferns to do well, you can have good success with the 
Cinnamon Fern which likes plenty of moisture. In fact it must 
have it in order to do well. There are other more desirable ferns, 
especially among the Aspidiums and Aspleniums, yet there is a 
place for it if you have an order calhng for an assortment, especially 
in cases where you are not sure of perfect soil drainage which most 
other varieties require to produce a permanent or lasting effect. 

PoLYPODiuM vuLGAHE (Hardy Chff Fern) 

This evergreen fern is what you want if a low effect is desired. 
It will form a dense mat with green fronds averaging about eight 
inches long and if ferns are wanted for planting a rockery. Poly- 
podium vulgare should be included. It is especially fine for that 
purpose and quite hardy almost anywhere— but don't plant it in 
the Fall. If not estabhshed before Winter sets in, the plants usually 
die out before Spring even if protected and even though you may have 
no trouble with other varieties. 

Phegoptebis hexagonoptera 
This fern is a good one to use in shady places where it will 
grow fully twelve inches in height. For effectiveness it is well to 



DESIRABLE HARDY FERNS 



211 



plant it along with others of dwarfer habit such as Polypodium 
valgare, for the Phegopteri, of which there are several varieties, 
all develop more or less of a stem before the leaflets of the fronds 
start, and this makes them rather long-legged. 

WOODSIA ILVENSIES 

Woodsia ilvensis or Rusty Woodsia, is a splendid dwarf-growing 
fern which can be used in planting rockeries, whether around the 
bottom or away up on top where there is usually more or less of a 
lack of moisture at times. It grows about six inches in height and 
makes a good companion for Polypodium vulgare. While it will do 
well in the shade, it is equally at home in sunny positions. Plant 
it in the Spring. 

WooDWARDiA ANGUSTiFOLiA (Hardy Chain Fern) 

The Woodwardias grow about a foot in height and their fronds 
are about three inches wide. They love a deep, cultivated soil 
where they always have an abundance of moisture about their 
roots. In a shallow dry soil they don't amount to much, but give 
their roots a chance to draw up moisture and they certainly will 
thrive. If you have wet spots, plant Woodwardias in them in pref- 
erence to other ferns; however, they will do equally well in a rockery 
if you have plenty of good soil in it. 



r 




"^^m^ 

.4^ 




s 


■>';|^'^''^^^^^g 


^*. 








fS 


^^^S 






^^^ 




nS' 




^$W ^ .r: 


M%^ ^'^ -^^ 


^ms 



Fig. 73.— The Populab Habdy Maidenhair Fern. Modest, graceful and deli- 
cate, it is also hardy and easily grown. It can be coUected m its native woods in 
late Sununer, but the retail grower will do better to buy small stock from a specialist 



212 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



I 



PERENNIALS AND BIENNIALS AND HOW TO USE THEM 
DON'T know of anything that, from the standpoint of florists— 
especially the retail growers throughout the country— deserves 
more attention than the growing on and handling of so-called hardy 
flowering plants. Never before has there been a greater demand for 
this class of stock nor higher prices paid for it. And when you con- 
sider that most of the best known varieties and the showiest and 
finest of cut flower sorts are easily grown on or propagated either 
by division, cuttings or seed; that with the help of a greenhouse the 
work is made stfll easier; and that the great majority of the plants 
wiU thrive in ordinary soil and overwinter in the open even in severe 
sections, it seems that there cannot possibly be a crop which will 
bring greater returns for the space it occupies or for the outlay 
required in caring for it. 

It is a fact that today there are not hundreds, but thousands 
of localities whence lovers of the hardy border send hundreds of miles 
each year to obtain their requirements in biennials and perennials 
for no other reason than that the local florist doesn't carry them. 
He may, perchance, have a few Peonies (half of which never flower), 
clumps of long-discarded varieties of Iris, or small-flowering, pinkish- 
purple Phlox — and none of these taken care of — but there are only 
very few who go into this branch the way they should. Yet who 
can do it better and to more advantage, who has a better chance 
to dispose of plants each Spring and Fall, who can make better use 
of the cut flowers, than the local florist ? 

Don't Neglect the Perennials 

You will never be able to make money out of perennials by 
carrying just a few sorts and making people hunt you up in order 
to get them. You can never make them pay by having only a few 
rows, and those not taken care of, or of poor varieties. They should 
mean to you more than a side line. If you do business where people 
have gardens, the growing of hardy stock should be pushed to 
the limit. It should be developed into one of the main branches, 
for the demand is there and will keep on growing from year to year. 
What has been accomplished so far in creating this demand has been 
done by just a few large firms. The florist himself has done but 
very, very little. It may be that he has been kept too busy with 
other things, but that won't always be so. Your greenhouse stock 
will not suffer for want of buyers if you push perennials; nor will 
the large firms, which at present ship into your town, sell any less. 
But you will sell more, do more business, and make more money. 

You are not through with a customer when he or she has 
bought of you $10 or $20 worth of choice Peonies or some of the 



DON'T NEGLECT THE PERENNIALS 213 

latest varieties of hardy Phlox. It is more probable that the same 
customer will buy twice as much before six months are over, and 
keep up such purchases and want just as many porch boxes filled 
as before. 

Consider for a moment the cost to you of producing a good 
4-in. Geranium — the time, the labor and the bench space it takes 
to do it and remember that you can sell Geraniums only once a 
year. Then consider growing a Delphinium from seed sown out- 
doors, and transplanted once. What isn't sold keeps on growing 
into money; you cut the flowers and a year later the plant will be 
worth twice as much, whether you sell it or keep it, in which case 
you cut more flowers. The third year you can use it for flowering 
under glass, where one flower stalk will bring as much as an 8- 
months' old Geranium plant. No, the Delphiniums are not the 
exception. Many other perennials do the same thing in proportion. 

Grow on a good stock of biennials and perennials; advertise 
and keep on advertising; make a display on your own grounds; 
let your customers know when it is Iris, Peony or Phlox time. What 
you can't sell at home, dispose of wholesale. If you carry good 
varieties and let the trade know what surplus you have, there will 
be no trouble in disposing of it. What the trade is mostly interested 
in are those varieties which furnish good cut flowers or can be 
flowered under glass. 

How TO WoBK Up a Stock of Perennials 

If you realize the importance and the possibilities of handling 
biennials and perennials and are considering going into the work, 
let me offer a few suggestions that will be of help in getting started 
and under way; after that you wiU be able to help yourself. 

According to your requirements and pocketbook, begin by in- 
vesting in the three leaders: Peonies, Iris and Phlox. The most 
expensive of these are Peonies, and I wouldn't plant more than 
six varieties. You might consider the following: Festiva maxima 
for white; Jules EUe, light rose; Duke of Wellington, creamy white; 
Golden Harvest, peach-blossom pink; Louis Van Houtte, dark red; 
and Fehx Crousse, another red. Plant twenty-five, fifty, or one 
hundred of each in nursery rows, allowing about one foot between 
the plants and three feet between the rows. Don't go to the trouble 
of digging the soil over several feet deep and manuring heavily. 
Deep cultivation is fine, but too deep tillage is waste, and so is an 
overdose of manure. Cultivation after planting is what counts. 
If you plant one foot apart you can, if you like, take up every other 
plant and sell it. 

Iris are not expensive, even the good new varieties. Of these 
you also want not over six varieties to start with, that is, if your 



214 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

working capital is limited. Here are a few splendid uptodate sorts: 
Pallida dalmatica, Sherwin Wright, Mme. Chereau, Lorelei, Lohen- 
gren. Princess Victoria Louise and Lord Salisbury. Plant the Iris 
the same as the Peonies and always provide each variety with a 
substantial label properly marked. 

Among the Phloxes are many showy varieties and yet to start 
out with, six good ones of as many colors will do, for you can always 
add more. Miss Lingard is at the head of all white Phloxes, especially 
the early ones and Mrs. Jenkins is still one of the most popular 
late whites, even if not as large as Van Lassburg. W. C. Egan is 
the best soft lavender pink; Ehzabeth Caimpbell, the best deep 
salmon pink; Rynstrom, a fine improved Phanteon of a deep 
cerise pink; and Mauve Queen is very attractive. 

If you purchase field plants of Phlox in Fall, all with the excep- 
tion of Miss Lingard can have two-thirds of their larger roots 
removed before you plant them into the field; these roots can be 
used for propagating (see page 473). Miss Lingard is best propa- 
gated by means of cuttings, which method is also described else- 
where (page 472.) 

With a stock of any of these leaders on hand you can keep on 
increasing the number of plants from year to year. With the 
Phloxes you will have plants to sell the second season and the same 
with the Iris. The Peonies will take a little longer before you can 
start dividing the clumps, but when this time once arrives you can 
soon work up great numbers. 

If you wish you can add to this list other important subjects 
such as: Delphiniums, Columbines, Shasta Daisies, Gaillardias, 
Achillea and Anchusa. But all of these are easily grown on from 
seed, which if sown during February and March and if the Uttle 
plants are carried along inside until April and then planted out, will 
give the finest kind of salable stock that Fall. As with the Del- 
phiniums, Shasta Daisies and Gaillardias will give you flowers the 
first Summer. 

Laying Out a Perennial Border 

There are many ways in which perennials can be used to ad- 
vantage on the home grounds, but while Peonies or Iris, or for that 
matter, any other sort can be planted in groups, beds or long, narrow 
borders, whenever one variety occupies a bed by itself, you need 
annuals with it in order to obtain a showy effect all Summer. The 
Peony, while gorgeous when in flower, lasts but a few days; the 
same is true of Iris or Columbines. When you think of Holly- 
hocks or Golden Glow you have in mind the plants at the height 
of their beauty ; two or three weeks after that they look sad. And not 



THE PERENNIAL BORDER 



215 




Fig. 74. — ^Thb Habdy Plant Border. The irregular perennial border is best 
placed on the outskirts of the lawn, but an equally pleasing eflfect can be produced 
along a straight walk bordered with hardy flowering plants set against a background 

of shrubs 



all of these perennial plants have attractive foliage or are good to 
look at when out of flower. If a customer insists on having a long, 
narrow border filled with a row of Peonies, give it to her, but call 
attention to the fact that something else should go with the Peonies. 
For such a border a display of bulbous stock in Spring, followed by 
Gladioli, Snapdragons or other annuals might be suggested. The 
foUage of Peonies stays good almost aU Summer, but that is about 
all that can be said about it. 

On the smaller home grounds the most satisfactory way to 
get the most out of perennials or biennials is to plant them in an 
irregular border, maybe with a background of shrubs. If the border 
is six feet or so in width, you can plant them in groups and arrange 
things so as to have flowers coming along over the greater part of 
the season. But even here, you won't make a mistake by leaving 
spaces for annuals between the clumps or groups. 

You cannot afford to take an acre of your own and spend a lot 
of money preparing the soil for the planting of perennials; but if 
there is a chance and if the owner is willing to pay for it, always 
work the beds and borders over deeply and put enough manure in 
them. If the soil is very poor, put good loam in its place; you will 



216 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

get better results. If you are asked to lay out a perennial garden, 
don't get into fancy designs and try to make beds of fantastic 
shapes. Straight beds four feet wide and as long as you want 
them, with 4-ft. sod paths between look better and answer better 
in such a garden. If these beds are properly filled with groups of 
plants, taking into consideration their flowering periods and their 
colors, and if a few annuals are used in connection with them, you 
can have them look good all season. 

On small grounds where it is not possible to allow for a perennial 
or hardy flowering plant garden, it is often an easy matter to widen 
out a shrubbery border 2 feet or so and plant perennials along the 
edge. This may also be done with shrubbery beds of which the side 
facing the lawn or residence can be widened out and used. With a 
background of conifers or shrubs, you overcome, to some extent, 
the naked appearance of hardy stock which happens to be out of 
bloom. 

Potted Perennials for Spring and Summer Trade 

If you sell your perennials at retail in your immediate neighbor- 
hood, your patrons are bound to appreciate the fact that they 
obtain better stock than is possible when the plants have to travel 
long distances. A plant with naked roots is not to be compared 
with one delivered with a nice ball of earth around its roots and 
the latter is out of the question when you ship the stock. But even 
such plants can be lifted only during a comparatively short time in 
Spring. After they start into growth, it isn't long before you hurt 
them too much by lifting them. To overcome this difficulty and 
to make it possible to sell certain varieties practically all Summer, 
plants in pots are made use of. 

It cannot always be said that when, in Spring, the plants in 
the field are ready," the people who want them are. Many of your 
customers overlook the ordering of what they need until too late; 
or, as is often the case with new grounds, the beds or borders where 
they are to be planted are not ready. With a good batch of plants 
in pots, you can prolong the planting season for weeks and even if 
such stock as has been planted in Midsummer doesn't make much 
of a showing that season, one still gains by planting it, for the plants 
will get so well established before Winter sets in that they become 
far superior to those planted out from the field in the Fall. When 
you once get your customers to realize that you carry perennials, 
you wiU have plenty of calls for them long after the regular bedding 
season is over. 

In order to have plants in 33^-in. or 4-in. pots by May, you 
should lift field plants in FaU, heel them into a frame and leave 
them there until about the end of February, after which bring them 



PERENNIALS FOR SPRING AND SUMMER TRADE 217 

to the potting shed. In the case of Shasta Daisies, Achillea, Physos- 
tegia and many others of which good sized plants can be had, these 
can be divided into small pieces, just large enough to be potted up 
in 33^-in. pots. After this they can again be brought in to a cold- 
frame, given a thorough watering and protected with sashes to keep 
heavy frost out. By the middle of March or so, according to weather 
conditions, remove the sashes altogether, for you don't want to 
encoiu:age growth but rather to retard it. 

Don't draw on these plants, except for shipping, until it gets 
too late to Kft field plants When that time draws near is the time 
to push the potted stock. Let the people know about it, advertise 
it, make people think of it. Call attention to the advantage derived 
from planting such stock and you will surely find sale for it. 

Twenty-five Biennial and Perennial Flowering Plants 
Arranged According to Their Importance tj the Florist 

From the florist's point of view, all such plants as come under 
the head of biennials, perennials, and herbaceous or hardy flowering 
sorts, have to be judged first by their individual value as cut flowers, 
for this is of greatest importance to most of us. A variety which 
wiU produce desirable cut flowers over the longest period should 
come first, especially if it furnishes flowers which adapt them- 
selves to many purposes. Next in importance we have to consider 
its hardiness, then its ease of culture and next, for the retail grower, 
the ability to dispose of the plants themselves not only at retail to 
his patrons during Spring and Fall, but also, in the case of any 
surplus, at wholesale to the trade for growing on. 

Every retail grower with space outdoors in connection with 
his greenhouses should have a stock of the following sorts always 
on hand. Most of them are easily grown on, either from seed 
or divisions of the field plants or clumps, and with just a little 
attention they wiU bring as good, if not better, returns than almost 
anything handled in or outdoors. The botanical or common name, 
according to which the plant is best known by, is used in each case. 

Achillea Ptarmica Flore Pleno, "The Pearl." You cannot 
ask for anything more useful for sprays or in a basket arrangement 
of flowers than this AchiUea. Small divisions planted one foot 
apart each way in September, wiU flower for three months the 
following Summer. (See page 243.) 

Anemone japonica. If these Anemones were just a little 
more hardy, they would become as popular as any perennial grown, 
for their beautiful flowers are at their best when we need flowers 
outdoors the most. (See page 253.) 



218 



FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Canterbury Bells {Cam- 
pamula medium). We don't see 
many cut Canterbury Bells on 3- 
to 4-ft. stems in early Summer for 
the reason that there are none to 
be seen. With a greenhouse you 
can have the plants in bloom from 
early April on. They make grand 
pot plants as well as cut flowers 
and are every bit as grand when 
massed in the hardy border. (See 
page 296.) 

Chrysanthemums (Early 
outdoor flowering). With each 
year new varieties are coming to 
the front, that come into flower 
the forepart of October and 
make it possible, even in cold 
sections, to enjoy outdoor flowers 
after most annuals have gone to 
sleep. Forget about their hardi- 
ness and lift enough field plants 
to be overwintered in a frame or 
used for propagating. Sell the 
small plants in Spring and plant 
enough for your own display as well as to cut from. (See page 324.) 
Columbine (Aquilegia). The Columbines come in many 
different shapes and sizes and a still greater variety of most beautiful 
shades and colorings. They are hardy as an Oak, among the first 
to bloom outdoors, fine for cutting and easily forced for early Spring. 
Why not pay more attention to them ? (See page 257.) 

Coreopsis lance olata grandiflora. There is nothing quite 
so golden during June as a bunch of long-stemmed Coreopsis. The 
trouble with a bedful is keeping it picked. Give the plants room 
and they will flower aU Summer long. Few florists as yet use the 
Coreopsis for flowering under glass for early Spring, but this is 
easily done and can be made to pay. (See page 331.) 

Delphinium (Hardy Larkspur). The BeUadonna hybrids, 
easily grown from seed, furnish most desirable cut flowers aU Summer 
and are as good under glass for forcing. (See page 347.) 

Foxglove (Digitalis). This biennial, like the Hollyhock, is 
a great show plant when in flower and is used a great deal for mass- 
ing. As it is one of the best known and most popular border plants, 
it is always well to carry a stock in frames over Winter with which 
to supply your patrons in Spring after they have lost their own 
through lack of proper protection. (See page 355.) 



Fig. 75. — Perennials Effectively 
Used in Design Work. This lyre 
is of Feverfew, Dorothy Perkins Roses 
and pink Veronica with Cycas and 
fern trimming 



TWENTY-FIVE BIENNIALS AND PERENNIALS 219 



Gaillardia. a vase full of long-stemmed Gaillardias in your 
display cooler will help make all the other flowers look better. 
The plants are constant bloomers, fine keepers, attractive singly 
or when massed, equally good during the dryest Summer or a wet 
Fall, and enable you to cut flowers until the snow flies. (See page 376.) 

Hardy Asters (Michaelmas Daisy). With their masses of 
delicately tinted Daisy-shaped flowers of fight lavender, mauve, 
and heUotrope, borne on good stems, these hardy Asters are not 
only splendid for the hardy border, but equally good for cutting, 
whether you want to use them to go with other flowers or in vases 
by themselves. (See page 268.) 

Hardy Pinks. This list would hardly be complete without 
mentioning these charming little border plants. As far as the 
flowers are concerned, they wiU pay best in the admiration and 
enjoyment you yourself get. As for the plants, don't ever let a 
patron go away saying "He talks about hardy plants but doesn't 
carry even a border Pink." (See page 351.) 

Helianthus (Hardy Sunflower). Among the Helianthus are 
varieties which wfll flower during October and grow into 6- or 7-ft. 
plants. The fact that they are also good decorative cut flowers 
makes them desirable perennials. (See page 393.) 

Hollyhocks. The cut flowers of Hollyhocks have but fittle 
value to us, but the plants when in bloom make a grand display. 
They help advertise your business if planted in the right spot and, 
as with the Poppies, quite a number of your patrons wiU caU on you 
for plants for their gardens. (See 
page 249.) 

Iceland Poppy (Papaver 
nudicaule). The Icela id Poppies 
are well named and deserve more 
attention at the hands of the flor- 
ist. Grown from seed sown in- 
doors in February, they wiU flower 
aU through the first Summer; the 
foUowing Spring they wiU be the 
first to bloom of all of the per- 
ennials you cut flowers from. (See 
page 461.) 

Iris. Whfle near the top of 

the fist as a perennial for the hardy 

border and outdoor planting in 

general, the Iris isn't nearly as 

important as any of the forego- Fig. 76.— Another Perennial Prod- 

iniT- vpt nf rniir<5P if dp<!prvps a UCT. The center of the heart is of 
mg, yet ol course it aeserves a ^^^^^ ^^ g^^^^ Wmiam, and the 

prominent place in every assort- border of Feverfew. Ferns and Gypso- 

ment. (See page 410.) phila paniculata give lightness 




220 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Lily of the Valley. You may just strike it right with the 
Valley you have in bloom on your own plants outdoors for a coming- 
out party, a wedding or a funeral, as the case may be; but usually 
all such events happen either a few days before or a few days after, 
so that you don't get much out of the plants. But for aU that, have 
somewhere a batch of Valley from which to supply your patrons 
with plants or pips whenever they want them. (See page 426.) 

Oriental Poppies (Papaver orientale). You should carry the 
different colored Oriental Poppies not because they make good cut 
flowers, but because you are bound to have call for the plants. 
However, if you cut just as the bud begins to show color, you can 
keep the flowers in good shape for several days, in fact, longer than 
they would last on the plant. (See page 460.) 

Peonies. Like the single-stemmed, large Chrysanthemums, 
the Peonies are with us for only a short time each year, but while 
their gorgeous display is on everybody wants them. You not only 
have good use for the flowers, but the plants will grow into money 
from year to year. (See page 463.) 

Phlox. The different varieties of the hardy Phlox are not only 
showy perennial border plants, but (as in the case of Miss Lingard) 
are of great usefulness as cut flowers. However, you don't want to 
carry clumps for five or six seasons, but should keep working up 
young stock each year. This will give you the first and second 
season flower heads that are really worth while. (See page 471.) 

Physostegia viRGiNiANA. Phy SO stcgias, with their wMtc and 
pinkish flower spikes during late Summer, make showy plants and 
are fine for cutting. Like Helianthus, they don't much care how 
poor the soil they are in, or how severe the Winter weather. (See 
page 476.) 

Primula veris (elatior) Polyanthus. The Polyanthus Primula 
by many would be classed nearer the top of the list. The plants 
are not only old favorites and considered among the earUest of 
Spring bloomers outdoors, but for the florist they make paying 
plants to grow under glass during the Winter months. They are 
especially fine for pans around Easter time. (See page 485.) 

Pyrethrum roseum hybridum. The single Pyrethrums with 
their lively colored Daisy-like flowers on long stems are fine for 
cutting in early Summer. Like the Columbines, even when out of 
bloom they make good looking plants among other perennials in 
a border. (See page 488.) 

RuDBECKiA (Golden Glow). We have hardly anything else 
as tall and stately in the way of yellow flowers as the Rudbeckia 
when in bloom and it is on that account that we like it. It also can 
stand neglect without showing bad effects, but if you want real 
Golden Glow, divide the clumps each Spring. (See page 514.) 



TWENTY-FIVE BIENNIALS AND PERENNIALS 221 

Shasta Daisy (Leucanthemum and Chrysanthemum maximum). 
The florist can always sell Daisy-shaped flowers, particularly 
when they consist of a good strain of Shasta Daisy "Alaska." Plants 
of this sort flower freely all Summer and can be gently forced under 
glass. (See page 520.) 

Sweet William {Dianthus barbatus). Every so-caUed "old- 
fashioned flower border" should have a few plants of Sweet William. 
You will always have call for them during the Spring season as weU 
as in Fall and frequently can make good use of the flowers in a cut 
state. (See page 351.) 



Fifty Other Hardy Flowering Plants 

The following are aU of value to the florist who handles this class 
of stock. While each of them can be used to advantage in the 
planting of perennial or hardy borders, many are of but Httle use 
as cut flowers. Practically all of them are fully described in Part II 
(pages 235 to 554) in alphabetical order. 



Acanthus mouus lati- 

FOUUS 

AcoNTTUM (Sparks' var.) 

ACHn.T.KA MLIEFOLIUM 
ROSEUM 

Agrostemma 
Anthemis tinctohia 
Anohusa itauca (Drop- 
more variety) 
Ababis alpina 
Artemisia lactifoija 

ASTTLBE 

Baptisia australis 
bocconia cordata 
Boltonia latisquama 
Campanula pyramidalis 
Cassia marilandica 
Gerastium tomentosa 
Chelone 



DiCTAMNUS FRAXINELLA 
DiELYTRA SPECTABILIS 
EUPATORIUM AGBRATOI- 

DES 
FUNKIA 

Gypsophtla paniculata 
Hei^nium "Riverton 

Gem" 
Heliopsis Pitchbriana 

HeUCHERA SAN6UINBA 

Hbmerocaixis 

Hibiscus (Mallow) 

Hypericum 

Lavandula 

Lychnis 

Mertensia virginica 

Lobelia cardinalis 

Lupinus 

monarda didyma 



Myosotis 

Physalis Franchetii 

Pentstemon 

Platycodon 

Plumbago Larpbnt/E 

Potentilla 

Pyrethhum uliginosum 

Ranunculus 

Rudbeckia purpurea 

Salvia azurea 

scabiosa caucasica 

Sbdum 

SpIRjBA 

Staticb latifolia 
Stokesia cyanea 
Valeriana officinalis 
Veronica longefolia 

ViNCA minor 

YuCCA FILAMBNTOSA 



PLANTS FOR ROCKERIES AND ROCK GARDENS 

EXCEEDINGLY pleasing effects can be created with the rockery 
'-' or rock garden and this is particularly so on the small home 
grounds. One needn't have great sweeps of lawn space or acres of land 
in order to make such a planting or type of gardening permissible. 
In fact, if you carry out the idea in not too large proportions, you 
may, with the help of a rock garden, add greatly to the apparent 
extent of the grounds, making them appear much larger than they 
really are. Grounds with a flat surfaced lawn and the usual border 
planting of shrubs are not nearly as attractive as those in which 
along the outskirts of the lawn, we find elevations created by raised 
borders or rock garden plantings. A few elevations and gentle 
depressions always help to make a landscape more picturesque. 



FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



fcay^^jyi 


^%^^ «. SB 






^^^^^^^^ 


^^^^ 


^■"- 




1^^^"' J 






^^'^c^ 








'^IS^S- :>^l^ 



Fig. 77. — -k. Well-planned Rock Garden, and in a good setting, too. Many of 
the typical Alpine plants are hard to grow in America, but there are plenty of satis- 
factory substitutes among our more common sorts 



What Is a Rockery? 

A rockery is not merely a pile of rocks or boulders thrown 
in a heap with a few starved plants set among them; nor need a 
rockery be ten feet high in order to be effective. A rock garden 
may consist simply of a raised bed with a few good-sized boulders 
in it. It all depends on the effect wanted, the size of the grounds, 
and the extensiveness of the planting to be made. ' For small grounds, 
a bed say five feet in diameter, elevated some twelve to fifteen 
inches above the surface of the lawn, with five or seven fair-sized 
boulders in it and planted with a few Iris, Aquilegias or other 
suitable plants and perhaps a few hardy Lilies, Santolinas and 
specimens of Vinca minor will add greatly to the attractiveness of 
the surroundings. Such a planting one may consider the beginning 
of a rockery or a rock garden in miniature, and really nothing more 
is needed than to extend the arrangement and size so as to make 
it correspond with the surroundings no matter how extensive. 

Wonderful effects can be obtained, but each garden and plant- 
ing requires a different treatment so that it will harmonize with the 
surroundings. At times a low effect is most desirable; at others 
the elevation may be many feet in height. But always you must 
have the width in porportion. An unsightly view may be hidden 



WHAT IS A ROCKERY? 223 

with a rockery, or a miniature ravine can be created with rock 
gardens forming the slopes. In connection with a pool for aquatics 
a rock garden can be so constructed as to give the pool a harmonious 
background or setting. Indeed, there are all kinds of possibilities, 
nor need the rock garden be planted strictly with dwarf-growing 
stock or such as is of doubtful hardiness. 

The main thing to my mind is to create a pleasing effect. If 
the rockery or rock garden doesn't add to the beauty of a place, it 
is worse than useless. You don't have to confine yourself entirely 
to perennials in planting it. Nepeta or Glechoma variegata, Pen- 
nisetum longistylum, Thunbergia, Lobelia, Mesembryanthemum, 
Guphea, Santolina, Alternanthera, traiUng Lantana, Goleus, small 
single-flowering Petunias, Begonias, double Alyssum, dwarf Ager- 
atum — all these are just a few of the so-called greenhouse materials 
that are suitable for such a planting. 



A Practical Planting Suggestion 

I realize that, in the opinion of an expert, such stock would 
hardly suit and that there are many other so-called rockery plants 
that should be used instead. On the other hand, one could arrange 
a raised bed of irregular outline with boulders or small rocks and 
make a wonderful display with nothing but annuals and bedding 
stock. What is there wrong, for instance, about a rock with its 
weather beaten, pointed top sticking out of the ground fifteen inches 
or so, and some plants at its base or sides ? There could be a single 
plant of Rosy Morn Petunia, in the foreground a plant of Ageratum 
Fraserii, a double Alyssum, a httle Thunbergia, and variegated 
Glechoma, and a background consisting of Pennisetum or a Grevillea 
robusta behind the Petunia. 

Too artificial compared with real hardy rock plants? Maybe, 
but no Petunia, Alyssum, Ageratum, or even Pennisetum will show 
off as well as when displayed as a single specimen and planted just 
that way. To crowd things into a solid formal bed or border is all 
right if you want a mass effect, but to appreciate the full beauty of 
the plants themselves, you must give them a chance for individual 
development, and this can best be done when they are planted in a 
rock garden. It isn't likely that the average florist wiU be caUed 
upon to lay out rock gardens on a large scale, nor expected to draw 
plans and furnish lists of a hundred odd varieties of suitable plants. 
But he will be caUed upon at times to do such work on a small scale, 
and therefore should have some knowledge of what it means. No 
book or lengthy article ever written on rock gardening will make it 
possible for the beginner to carry out a job as well as one who has 
had actual experience, but any florist who can appreciate beauty in 



224 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

nature should have no trouble in planning a pleasing setting in this 
style of gardening and improving as he goes along. That holds good 
in all landscape work. 

Hardy Plants for the Rockery 

In the following short list of hardy stock suitable for rock 
gardening I have included varieties with which the average florist 
is most famihar, rather than a lot of stock which, perhaps, would 
be more important in carrying out a planting consisting solely of 
materials that are naturally found only in mountainous regions or in 
the crevices of rocks. While remarkable effects may be gained 
with such material, especially when carried out on a large scale, 
your patrons who either take care of their grounds themselves, or 
who put them in charge of inexperienced help, are not apt to be 
very successful with such plantings. Furthermore, we have to con- 
sider the hardiness of the plants themselves. So I have tried to 
make up a list of such as are best known and not only used for this 
purpose alone, but often found in the hardy border as well. 

Aquilegia Lathyrus latifolius Primula polyanthus 

Ahabis alpina Lupinus Ranunculus achis fl.'pl. 

Aster (dwarf sorts) Heuchera sanguinba Sbdum acre 

Bblus pbrennis Heuanthemum Sedum spectabile 

Campanula garpatica Lychnis Sedum atrosanguineum 

Cbhastium tomentosum Mertensia Shasta Daisy 

DiANTHUs (hardy Pinks) Myosotis Stokesia cyanba 

FuNKiA Papavbr nudicaule (Ice- Thauctrum dipterocar- 

Gbum atrosanguineum land Poppy) pum 

Lily of the Valley Platycodon Vinca minor 
Phlox subulata 

Most of the above are described elsewhere. With the exception 
of two or three, all of them will do for sunny positions, yet they can 
be successfully grown even in partial shade. In cases where a part 
of the garden is exposed to too much shade, one might consider 
gradually running it into hardy ferns and using Spring-flowering 
bulb stock such as Tulips, Narcissus, Scilla, Crocus, Snowdrops and 
Iris, and such plants as Aquilegias, Mertensias, Iceland Poppies, 
Funkia undulata, media picta and other early flowering perennials 
in connection with the ferns, and perhaps Vinca minor for a ground 
cover. 

DESIRABLE HYBRID TEA ROSES FOR OUTDOOR 
FLOWERING 

The average retail grower hasn't use for a great assortment of 
Roses in supplying his patrons with stock for planting out. A half 
dozen good sorts are often better to carry than twenty-five doubtful 
ones, yet there are times when more of an assortment is wanted. 

In such a case a hst made up by the florist or the Rose specialist 
isn't of as great value as one selected from varieties which have 



TEA ROSES FOR OUTDOOR FLOWERING 



225 



actually proved to be desirable, having been planted and grown 
outdoors for a number of years. The florist usually has facilities 
that enable him to take better care of his stock over Winter than the 
amateur, while those growing on plants for the market are generally 
located in sections where mild Winters are the rule. 

At "Egandale," the beautiful estate of Mr. W. G. Egan at High- 
land Park, Illinois, 290 varieties of Teas and Hybrid Teas were 
growing in the open ground in the Spring of 1922, and the following 
list of thirty varieties was chosen from this assortment. With the 
exception of the extreme northern section of the United States, I 
doubt whether there are any other localities with more severe climatic 
conditions than prevail in northern Illinois. It is safe to say that 
any Rose that does well there, and which, with a Uttle protection, 
will pull through Winters when the thermometer is hkely to go down 
to 20 deg. below zero, wiU do well elsewhere. 

I have watched the Roses at Egandale and feel satisfied that 
the following list, compiled by Mr. Egan at my request, consists of 
varieties aU of which belong to the Honor Class, such as every 
florist can recommend to his patrons. This is not to say that these 
are the only good sorts; there are plenty of others and some of the 
new excellent varieties, especially such as Golumbia, Butterfly and 
Hoosier Beauty, are among them. 



Thirty Roses That Have Made Good 

Mr. Egan says: "The following thirty Tea Roses were planted 
March 31, 1915 at Egandale and were still in good condition in the 
Spring of 1922 — ^ready to produce their eighth season's blooms. Three 
plants of each of forty-two varieties were originally planted, and the 
list shows the survivors. The remaining twelve were discarded on 
accoimt of weakness and a tendency to mildew or black spot, or just 
because they would not do well; some of them would not last over 
Winter although protected. 

"The figures opposite the variety names indicate the average 
number of blooms each plant gave in the Summer of 1916:" 



Caholinb Testout 24% 

Duchess op Wellington 30Vi 

Earl op Warwicsc 15% 

ecarlatb 118v4 

Farbinkonigin 17% 

Florence Pemberton 30 

General McArthur 22 

Grosherzog Frederick 44% 

GusTAV Grunnbwald 23 

Killahney 52% 

La Tosca 45 

Lady Alice Stanley 23% 

Lady Ashton 34VS 

Lady Pihbib 20V'3 

Lady Ursula SOV^ 



Lieutenant Carle 19% 

Lieutenant Chaure 21% 

Louise C. Breslau 9% 

Madame E. Rostand 11 

Madame Jules Bouche 16% 

Madame Leon Pain 23% 

Madame Melaine Soupert 14% 

Mrs. Aaron Ward 31% 

Mrs. a. R. Waddell 31% 

Mrs. W. C. Miller .14 

Ophelia 34% 

Phariseer 28 

Radiance 42 

Viscountess Folkstonb 26% 

WiLLOWMERE 21% 



226 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

DESIRABLE TREES FOR LAWN AND STREET PLANTING 

AT a first glance, it may seem somewhat out of place to treat 
trees here, and also to mention only sixteen of the many kinds 
there are to choose from. There are occasions, however, where it is 
well for the florist, especially if he is interested in outdoor work, to 
be acquainted with at least a few of the trees which, while not at 
home everywhere in the United States, are nevertheless among the 
most popular. There are beautiful trees in the South, both ever- 
green and deciduous, that we cannot do anything with in the North 
or Middle West, and the same holds good with many of the varieties 
grown along the Pacific and North Pacific Coasts. But for all 
that, the sixteen sorts described in the next few pages are grown on 
by nurserymen more than any others, and are used for lawn and 
street plantings in the same proportion. 

Growing vs. Buying Your Trees 

The smaller a tree, the more easily it wiU become re-established, 
and there is no good reason why the local florist shouldn't handle at 
least small trees, such as he can have easily shipped by freight from 
his nearest nurseryman. To handle large trees you must have proper 
equipment, and it isn't likely that you will ever compete in that line 




Fig. 78.— One op the Popular Maples. Acer polymorphum, the Japanese 

Maple, IS a favorite specimen for lawn planting on account of its rich coloring 

no less than its graceful fonn 



GROWING vs. BUYING TREES 227 

with the nurseryman. Nor will he, if he is at all liberal minded, feel 
bad about your selling small trees. As stated elsewhere, if you have 
the room to spare, plant a few of the varieties most popular in your 
section and let them grow into money. Up to 5- or 6-in. almost any 
tree can be handled without much machinery and yet will bring a 
good price. 

Of course, a great deal depends upon how far a good nursery is 
located from you. If it is at all near, you may find it just as profit- 
able to take the orders and have the nurseryman deliver the trees for 
you. You will have to decide that yourself, but in either case it won't 
hurt you to become acquainted with a few of the many good trees 
there are. 

In planting trees of any kind bear in mind that the heavier the 
soil, the more liberal you should be in digging the holes for them. 
You can never overdo this — never. While you do want to pack the 
soU around a newly planted tree as solid and firm as you can get it, 
the deeper you have cultivated the soil in which the roots can go, 
the better success you will have. Good soil and a liberal amount of 
well decomposed manure mixed with it are things that every tree 
will appreciate. 

Here are the sixteen trees I would suggest that every retail 

grower get familiar with and handle if the opportunity offers: 

Maple, Norway Mountain Ash 

Mapi^, Sugar Oak 

Maple, Purple-lbat Plane 

Maple, Gut-leaf Poplar 

Ash (Fraxinus americana) 

The White Ash is one of the finest of our native trees and at- 
tains an enormous size. We often find it in low, marshy places, or, 
again, on high ground where it seems to thrive equaUy weU, 
though growing more slowly. The thing that people often object 
to about both the White and the Black Ash is not that they have 
anything against the tree itself, but the fact that it may already grow 
in its native state in the neighborhood they live in. 

Ashes should always be planted where the trees will have plenty 
of chance to grow without being crowded. They will grow in time 
as tall as any tree we have, yet their shade is not so dense as that of 
Maples or other trees beneath which grass often cannot he made to 
grow. 

Beech (Fagus) 

The Beeches make great trees, and where they do at aU well, 
should be included in an assortment. One of the most showy is 
the Copper Beech {Fagus sylvatica purpurea) with its copper-colored 
leaves and spreading habit — an excellent lawn specimen. 



Ash 


Ghestnut, Horse 


Beech 


Elm 


Birch 


Linden 


Gatalpa 


Locust 



228 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Fagm pendula is the name of the Weeping Beech. While not to 
be considered in the same class with Norway Maples, Elms, or Ashes, 
this Beech makes a beautiful, graceful specimen for the lawn. With 
its wavy, large leaves and the branches of a weeping habit, it is 
especially adapted for the smaller home ground. 

You may experience a little trouble in getting the tree under 
way and a good way is to give it a severe pruning at the time of 
planting. But, really, that holds good with all trees. 

Birch (Betula) 

There are a number of fine Birches, but the most showy is the 
white-barked Birch, which we find native in many sections of the 
country. You don't want many of this sort on the home ground, 
but when properly placed a clump or group of them combined with 
other trees and with a group of evergreens or conifers in the fore- 
ground or background, always gives a picturesque setting for a Winter 
ejffect, which is what we in the Middle West need so badly. More 
attention should be given to the Winter landscape when we have 
so many beautiful evergreens and trees and shrubs with highly 
colored bark to choose from. The weeping white Birch makes one 
of the most beautiful and graceful of weeping lawn trees. It should 
be planted alone and given plenty of space for development. 

Catalpa (Catalpa speciosa) 

The Catalpas are among the last trees to leaf out in Spring, and 
the first to drop their foliage in Fall; in a dry season they are past 
their best even before Fall sets in, yet they make fine trees, and are 
often planted for the flowers that load them down in July. 
As with some other trees, not as desirable as they might be, we often 
use Catalpas just for variety's sake. Caialpa Bungei makes an 
attractive lawn tree, especially when you have specimens with 8-ft. 
stems or trunks and perfect tops. We see them used on terraces, 
in formal gardens, and for lining driveways where, with just a Uttle 
pruning, their heads can be trained into perfect globes, similar to 
those of Bay Trees. 

Elm (Ulmus) 

The Elm is, perhaps, the most stately of all our trees, and the 
older it grows, the more beautiful and majestic it becomes. This is 
not to say that even young trees 3- or 4-in. in diameter are any less 
desirable, for they are fast growers if planted in fair soil, doing equally 
well in low or high ground. But we notice that they suffer when 
passing through a hot, dry Summer. The Elm is one of the trees 
requiring careful pruning and thinning out when small, so as to lay 
the foundation for its future development. Of the eight or ten vari- 
eties none is more desirable than Ulmus americana, the American Elm. 



SIXTEEN TREES FOR LAWN AND STREET 229 

Honey Locust {Gleditschia triacanthos) 

We use the Honey and other Locusts for bank and bluff plant- 
ings, or where slopes are to be held. Like the Willows and Russian 
Mulberries, they grow great root mats and so hold the soil in place. 
The Honey Locust, however, will also make a fine tree, and its wood 
is as hard as anything you want to saw. The tree not only has 
beautiful foUage, quite distinct from that of other trees such as 
Maples, Elms or Horse Chestnuts, but its beautiful white flowers 
make it still more desirable. You can use it for either lawn or street, 
and while it grows straight up when crowded, it makes a fine shade 
tree if given plenty of room. 

HoBSE Chestnut {JEsculus Hippocastanum) 

Why not grow more Horse Chestnuts ? There are plenty of 
sections, especially throughout the great Middle West, where these 
fine trees will do well, both for lawn and street planting. Yet much 
less desirable ones are made use of. Like the Norway Maple, when 
once established, they will develop into magnificent specimens with 
but little care. They are ornamental, interesting, excellent shade 
trees, and a highway couldn't possibly be lined with anything more 
becoming. There are white flowering and red flowering sorts and 
even double varieties of both. The white flowering one is the best 
known and even as a smaU tree it is showy. The double white Horse 
Chestnut makes a most showy flowering tree, but, unlike the single 
form, produces no fruit. 

Linden, European {Tilia platyphyllos) 

The European Linden is a fast grower, much valued for its 
delightfully fragrant flowers, and a most desirable subject for lawn 
planting. The tree is of pyramidal form and fine habit. Tilia 
americana, or American Linden (also caUed Basswood), also makes 
a fine permanent tree with leaves of a lighter green and somewhat 
smaller. There are also several other varieties, all good and well 
worth having either as lawn or street trees. The Silver Linden is 
another desirable tree on account of the sflver grayish color of the 
underside of its leaves. Finally, the weeping or drooping Linden 
makes a handsome lawn tree. 

Mountain Ash (Sorbus) 

Both Sorbus americana, the American native Mountain Ash, 
and Sorbus Aucuparia, the European Mountain Ash, are handsome 
trees for the home grounds. They not only have fine foliage, de- 
sirable because it is different from that of the Oak, Basswood or 
Maple, but also are highly valued for the clusters of reddish berries 
with which the trees are loaded during the Summer and Fall months, 



230 



FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 79. — The Ever- attractive Mountain Ash oh Rowan Tree. A 

raijier small tree and of slow growth but excellent for lawn planting, with 

its handsome foliage, brilliant yeUow flower clusters and bright red berries 

lasting well into Winter 

and which make them most attractive. AU trees that have showy 
flowers, such as Horse Chestnuts, Catalpas, and Locusts, and the 
Mountain Ash with its berries have a place on the home grounds, 
and it is for the same reason that one should always consider fruit 
trees as well. Even if a Pear, Apple, or Plum never bears a fruit, 
the few days such trees are in bud and bloom well repay you for all 
they cost and the room they take up. By the same reasoning a 
Mountain Ash should be in every collection. 



SIXTEEN TREES FOR LAWN AND STREET 231 

Norway Maple (Acer platanoides) 
It may take a lifetime for a Norway Maple to develop into a 
good sized specimen, yet even at that it is well worth planting, 
for it is one of the most beautiful of all trees. It is at its best when 
given room to grow, and if you have to crowd it in with other trees, 
its beauty can never be appreciated. Give one plenty of room to 
spread out in and a pruning knife will hardly ever be needed to get 
it into shape. When planting a Norway Maple, always start out 
with a straight tree, even if you have to pay extra for it; make the 
hole about five times as large as seems necessary,' and fill it in with 
good soil. 

Oak (Quercus) 

When we speak of a "magnificent Oak" we have in mind a tree 
perhaps 100 years old, which has had a chance to develop and 
spread over a great area. Trees in the woods have no chance for 
that and too often we judge Oaks in general by such specimens. This 
is wrong, for the White, Red, Pin and Scarlet Oaks are weU worth 
careful consideration and frequent use in planting home grounds. 
It is a healthy sign that nurserymen all over the counti-y are growing 
on some of the desirable Oaks by the thousands. This makes it 
possible to obtain small and larger size trees with masses of fibrous 
roots which make their transplanting easy. This is not the case with 
native or field grown stock. 

Plane, Oriental (Platanus orientalis) 

The Plane, although a fine tree, does not interest those located 
in the country as much as those in the cities, for few other trees can 
stand more or thrive better in the narrow parkway of a city street 
and the environment that goes with it. It will do fairly well where a 
Maple or an Elm wouldn't amount to anything, and while there are 
other trees to be preferred for lawn planting the Plane is among the 
most desirable of all for streets and avenues. The creamy white 
color of the trunk and branches disclosed by the peeling off of the 
bark in late Fall makes this Plane a desirable tree for Winter effects, 
in which it forms a decided contrast to other trees in the landscape. 

Poplar (Populus) 

For quick results and immediate effects Poplars will always 
have a place among trees for the home grounds; moreover, we find 
Poplars of some variety grown over a wide area, even away up in 
Northern Alaska. The Carolina and Lombardy Poplars are often 
used where the space doesn't permit more spreading trees. The 
latter grow in the form of a column with branches all the way from 
the ground. It is also fine in a background planting, or to supply 



232 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

a skyline effect not possible with other trees. The Silver-leaf 
Poplar is desirable because its leaves are always in motion and 
are silvery underneath, while the GaroUna Poplar is the most de- 
sirable for a border planting, or where you want to hide an unsightly 
outlook quickly. 

Purple-leaf Maple {Acer platanoides Schwedleri) 

The red- or purple-leaf Maple is among the showiest of all the 
trees during early. Summer on account of the beautiful coloring of 
the leaves, which, however, don't retain this color all through the 
season. Although it is a hard Maple, so that the tree grows more 
beautiful the older it gets, even small trees 8 ft. in height and hardly 
over 1 in. in diameter are attractive because of the reddish-purple 
leaves. This is one of the trees which it will pay the florist with a 
small nursery to plant and grow on. Somebody in your neighbor- 
hood will some day want all you have. 

Sugar Maple {Acer saccharum) 

Those who don't want to wait for a Norway Maple to develop 
into a good-sized tree should plant the Sugar Maple. It grows faster, 
and if given a fair chance, wiU also grow into a fine specimen. There 



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Fig. 80. — Four Popular and Rbuabub Fruiting Plants for Winter Sales. 
At left, Ardisia cremdala; center rear, Skimmia japonica, sometimes grown out- 
doors; center front, one of the ornamental Peppers; at right, a well-grown Solanum 



SIXTEEN TREES FOR LAWN AND STREET 233 

are also times when Sugar Maples can be used to good advantage 
and help give variety, for the leaves are of a Ughter green than those 
of the Norway Maple and have a silvery tint on the under side. 
Sugar Maples are among the finest trees for coloring in Fall, and 
for that reason, if for no other, deserve a prominent place in the 
home grounds, where weU-colored Autumn foHage is as important 
and desirable as flowers are during the Summer time. 



Wier's Cut-leaf Maple 

{Acer dasycarpum (saccharinum) Wierii) 

I like Wier's Cut-leaf Maple as a lawn tree, because it grows 
fast. In five or six years from the time you plant a tree 1 J^ to 2 in. 
in diameter, you wiU have a beautiful specimen with graceful 
branches and cut leaves. It is quite different from any other tree 
we have. While considered a soft Maple and not having the lasting 
quahty of the hard sorts, it is nevertheless most desirable — though 
not as a street or avenue tree, because of its weeping habit, and 
because the branches hang down too low. 



MISCELLANEOUS FLOWER AND PLANT LISTS 
Desirable Gut Flowers for Midwinter 

'THE main object in making out a fist of eighteen desirable Mid- 
* winter flowering plants is to assist the beginner in selecting such 
varieties as he may desire that are best adapted for flowering from 
December first on up to, say, the end of February. After this time 
a greater variety of cut flowers can be had each day, but it is during 
the three previous months that we are rather hmited in our assort- 
ment. I have no doubt but what if twenty-five different growers 
were asked to arrange the list mentioned below according to the 
importance of each plant, we would obtain twenty-five different 
arrangements. But, after all, that is not as important as the fact 
that these plants represent the main varieties that all of us make 
use of. 



Roses 


Papbrwhite Narcissi 


Cat.i.a Lilies 


Carnations 


Tin.Y OF THE Valley 


Marguerites 


Violets 


Stevia 


Snapdragon 


Freesias 


BOUVABDIA 


BUDDT.EIA ASIATICA 


Sweet Peas 


Calendulas 


Primula malagoides 


Lilies 


SCHIZANTHUS 


Roman Hyacinths 




Mignonette 





234 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Ten Flowering and Fruiting Pot Plants 
FOR Midwinter 

We have no great variety of flowering pot plants to choose from 
around the Midwinter holidays, but I very much doubt whether, if 
we did have, anything could usurp the present popularity of a good 
red Cyclamen or a pan of well grown Poinsettias for Christmas. On 
the other hand, there is no doubt but that if a grower can produce 
any or all of these ten plants in good shape, he won't have to go much 
out of his way in order to dispose of them at good prices. The list 
is arranged according to the popularity of the plants. 

Cycolambn Emca Cinbhabia 

AzAi;EA PoiNSETTiA Primula (in Variety) 

Begonias (in variety) Ahdisia Otaheite Oranges 

SoLANUM (in variety) 



Desirable Decorative Plants to be 
Carried Under Glass 

For the florist retailing his crops and depending on a local trade, 
decorative plants such as palms, ferns, etc., are fully as valuable as 
flowering stock. Among such plants the following are some of the 
principal ones which will prove good investments. Most of them, 
with just ordinary care, will thrive and increase in value rather than 
become useless as is the case with leftover flowering plants. The 
most important ones head the list. 

Kbntia Forstbriana and K. Bel- Ahaucaria 

MOREANA Drac^nas in variety 
Phoenix canaribnsis and P. Robbelenii Pandanus Veitchii 

Nephrolepis in variety Crotons in variety 

Areca lutescens Euonymus 

Latania borbonica Aucuba 

Cocos Weddelliana Ficus blastica 

Aspidistra lurida Gycas revoluta 



Ten" Desirable Hardy Climbers 

From the florist's point of view, such climbers as will in the 
shortest possible time make a showing are the most desirable. Even 
those who don't do landscape work are frequently called upon to 
furnish hardy climbers in preference to annual sorts such as Cobxa 
scandens and others. 

Roses (Ramblers and other climbing Dutchm.\n's Pipe 

HONEYSUCKIB (Lonicera) wistaria 

Clematis in variety Matrimony Vine 

Ampblopsis in variety Akebia 

Bitter Sweet (Celastrus) Kudzu Vine (Pueraria) 



PART TWO 

A CULTURAL MANUAL FOR THE 
RETAIL GROWER 



236 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 





PART TWO 



A CULTURAL MANUAL FOR THE 
RETAIL GROWER 

IN the following pages will be found, alphabetically arranged, the 
different plants used by the florist. Except in a very few cases, 
I have written the descriptions and cultural notes from my own 
personal acquaintance with them, and have dwelt upon each accord- 
ing to its importance to the florist, pointing out just what its useful- 
ness consists of, and how to handle it so as to obtain the best 
results. 

Outside of a dictionary of gardening it is impossible to compile 
a list of plants in which every variety is represented, and after aU, 
such a list wouldn't be of nearly as much value to the retail grower as 
one that makes him acquainted with the actual "bread-and-butter" 
sorts. This I have tried to supply, even going so far as to omit the 
names of quite a number of plants which, whUe desirable, are of 
but little interest to the average florist; some I have omitted be- 
cause we have other more valuable plants which, to some extent, 
take their place and bring better returns. 

I have also dwelt but briefly on the different and most uptodate 
sorts of, for instance, Roses, Carnations, Sweet Peas, Geraniums, 
Cannas, Peonies, Iris, Phlox and other plants, for the reason that 
while these plants themselves are among the most popular, they 
have long been so, and no doubt always wiU be. With each year 
the number of their varieties changes and increases. The most 
complete, uptodate list today is out of date tomorrow— which, by 
the way, is the best possible indication that we are going forward. 

237 



238 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




A CULTURAL MANUAL 239 

More hybridizing is going on than ever, which makes it possible 
for the florist to keep step, like the worker in other lines. True, many 
so-called novelties prove worthless, but that cannot be helped. We 
need only look back a few years in order to realize the progress 
made in the development of plants and flowers. Yet, as with all 
other things, we have only begun, just started on our way; the 
highest type of anything in the way of a flower now holding the 
center of the stage, is likely to be pushed aside overnight to make 
way for a still higher type, and this is going to keep on and on. 

Here and there we come across a festiva maxima Peony, a S. A. 
Nutt Geranium, or an Enchantress Carnation; again, with all the 
many beautiful Roses coming along, we perhaps have none to equal 
the beauty of some of the oldtime favorites among the hybrid 
perpetual sorts. But as a general rule, only the latest and best 
and such varieties as are best adapted for present day methods of 
handling, will prove worth growing. 

What has become of our Ust of favorite Sweet Peas of a few 
years back? Of Snapdragons, Carnations, Cannas, Petunias, 
Begonias and others ? It is only in recent times that we have grown 
Chrysanthemums, Sweet Peas, Gladioli and Calendula under glass 
as we are doing today. What did yesterday's list of perennials or 
shrubs consist of compared with that of today ? Yet the very hsts 
that we are so proud of right now, will in turn soon be out of date! 

Look at a vase of fifty well-grown, long-stemmed Columbia, 
Russell, Premier, or Ophelia Roses, and it is hard to believe that new 
varieties are on the way to replace them aU. It seems only yester- 
day that Killarney was the most popular Rose grown under glass, 
and only a httle earUer that Bridesmaid had replaced all other 
pink Roses; it is no less interesting for the Carnation grower or the 
Cyclamen speciaHst to look backward — he who thought his flower 
had reached a state of perfection forty years ago. 

With so many beautiful and improved types of flowers on hand 
today, we can look forward to stiU gregiter developments in the 
introduction of new sorts. The ilorist should keep posted on all 
such developments as may directly interest him. In order to get 
the most out of his business, he must keep step with the times. , 

There are beautiful plants that we don't grow today. What, for 
instance, would there be in it for the retail grower in particular, if 
he were to carry a house full of Camelias — a plant of which, thirty- 
five years ago, every florist had a stock. Stephanotis and Asclepias 
used to be desirable plants for cut flowers under glass; both of them 
were beautiful as well as useful in their day. Even Passiflora, the 
Passion Flower, had a place. We thought the world of a Marechal 
Neil Rose under glass, running all over the house, and every retail 
grower handled Gloire de Dijon and Malmaison. But all these 
had to make way for others. 



240 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

We have to grow things that will bring the largest return per 
square foot of space taken up, and such as are most easily handled. 
We cannot afford to wait years before returns come in. The old- 
school gardener regrets not seeing more attention paid to the things 
that were popular in his day, but the modern florist simply cannot 
afford to give it. 

It isn't said that because you make every effort to get the most 
out of your estabUshment in dollars and cents you cannot enjoy the 
work, or find time to play. But if you [want to stay in the ring, 
you must keep abreast of the times you Uve in. There are only two 
ways: Be uptodate or be outofdate. The man who leads in his 
particular Kne is the one who will always be ready to give a fair 
trial to everything new that comes out in the way of plants and 
flowers; he is the one who takes an interest in any and every move- 
ment making for the advance of floriculture. He himself profits 
most by doing so. 



PLANTS FOR THE RETAIL GROWER AND 
HOW TO GROW THEM 

ABELIA CHINENSIS GRANDIFLORA 

The florist who handles shrubs and is located a httle farther 
to the South than we are should find a place for Abelia chinensis 
among the desirable evergreen flowering sorts. Of medium height, 
it forms rather dense-growing specimens, starts to flower by the end 
of June, and keeps it up until late in the Fall. Its Heather-like 
blossoms practicaUy cover the whole plant when in full bloom. 

Being evergreen, a good way to handle the plants, especially 
when transplanting 3- to 4-ft. stock, is to take them up with a ball 
of soil and burlap it. If this is done carefuUy the plants won't show 
any sign of a check. 

ABIES CONCOLOR (COLORADO WHITE FIR) 

There are a number of beautiful sorts of Abies which will grow 
into big specimens, and the florist who is called upon to make a 
planting of evergreens, or rather Conifers (to which group the 
Abies belong) should include some of them for the sake of variety. 
The White or Silver Fir {Abies concolor) is also known as Colorado 
Fir and grows into grand specimens. Balsam Fir is perhaps the 
best known of the Abies, and even as a small plant can be used to 
advantage when you have window boxes to fiU with evergreens for 
Winter effect. We have customers who will choose the Balsam Fir 
instead of the Norway Spruce for a Christmas tree; they like the 
odor of the needles and think them more graceful. If you have the 
space, let your nurseryman supply you with a few plants. It doesn't 



ABIES, ABUTILON, ACACIA 



241 



take many years for them to develop into nice specimens. Abies 
Nordmanniana is another fine sort and Abies peciinata, the European 
Silver Fir, is one of the fastest growers, with dark green, glossy needles, 
silvery underneath. 

ABUTILON 

With very little trouble one can grow an Abutilon in about six 
months from a rooted cutting, and have it in full bloom by Christmas. 
A plant with good foUage and full of pink, bell-shaped flowers such 
as Day Dawn wiU give you, is beautiful, but can hardly be compared 
with a Cyclamen or Cincinnati Begonia. Of interest to the florist of 
today are sorts such as Savitzii or Souvenir de Bonn, both of which, 
on account of their beautifuUy variegated leaves, make ideal border 
plants for a Canna bed; or they may be used to good advantage in 
bedding, as weU as in window boxes. Take cuttings that are not too 
soft, and in Septem- 
ber root them along 
with yom- other bed- 
ding plants, or lift a 
few plants, cut them 
back after they are 
potted up, carry 
along in a 52-deg. 
house, and, during 
February, use the 
young growth to 
propagate from. 
Whfle Fall-taken 
cuttings may remain 
in the sand for three 
months before root- 
ing, those taken in 
February and placed 
in sand with bottom 
heat wfll root in 
three weeks. 



ACACIA 

You cannot 
help but admire 
Acacia armata, A. 
Riceana, A. para- 
doxa and A. pubes- 
cens when in full 
bloom. They form 
a grand genus of 
broad-leaved ever- 



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Fig. 83.— Abies concoloh. The handsome, vigorous, 

popular White, SUver or Colorado Fir is one of the best 

conifers the retail grower can handle 



242 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 84. — ^Abutilon Thompsonii. One of the 
many fine Abutilons that make desirable Mid- 
winter flowering pot plants. It has orange- 
colored flowers and the leaves are mottled yellow 
and green 

half-ripened wood, in either Summer 
the florist to grow them on from small 
well-estabhshed plants in 6-in. pots or 
house, and allow them to 
come along slowly during 
February. Cut sprays of 
Acacias are now being 
shipped successfully by ex- 
press from the Coast in 
January and later, and 
arrive almost anywhere in 
good shape. It pays even 
the little florist in the 
small town to have his 
wholesaler in the large city 
send him some, and there- 
by let his patrons know 
he is thoroughly uptodate. 

Or, if you have a 
coldhouse with enough 
headroom, plant out a 
few good-sized plants of 
Acacia pubescens; you will 
find good use for the cut 
sprays. Left-over plants 



greens; but even the sorts 
we grow on in pots, no 
matter how well done, do 
not compare with the 
beauty of Acacia trees and 
shrubs in flower as seen 
outdoors in California. 
To the lover of flowers 
having a chance to behold 
them there during Winter, 
it is worth the price of a 
trip, no matter how ex- 
tensive. 

Acacias are strictly 

coldhouse plants. They 

can even stand a light 

frost and never during 

the Winter months should 

they be exposed to a high 

temperature. While the 

cuttings root easily from 

or Winter, it hardly pays 

plants. Let him buy a few 

over, keep them in a cold- 




Fig. 85. — ^Acacia HARPOPHYii-i. One of many 
beautiful Acacias adapted for pot culture and 
early Spring flowering 



ACACIA, ACALYPHA, ACER, ACHILLEA 243 

of A. armala or A. Riceana don't even need pruning back; give 
them a shift, plunge the pots outdoors or bury them all together 
until Fall, when they can get another shift and be brought in to 
the coldest house. 

ACALYPHA 

Some of the Acalyphas make showy pot plants, but they are 
best known to the florist as bedders on account of their beautiful 
foUage. We see them used in the pubUc parks and on large estates 
where they are treated almost like show Coleus. Cuttings taken 
from overwintered stock plants need, like those of Coleus, a bottom 
heat of 65 deg. or so in order to root quickly. A. Sanderi, with its 
long, red, drooping flower-spikes, makes the best sort for pots and 
can also be used for outdoors. Among the bedding sorts we have 
A. marginata, with green and rose-colored foliage; A. Miltoniana, 
hght green with a white edge, and A. bicolor compada, with yeUow 
blotches on the leaves. 



ACER JAPONICUM (JAPANESE MAPLE) 

With their beautifuUy colored leaves in different shades of 
yeUow, light red and deep red, these Maples make most showy pot 
plants during early Spring. They are, therefore, desirable decorative 
material for the retailer. 

You can obtain either potgrown stock or such as is in a dormant 
state with naked roots, from your nurseryman. After being heeled 
in in a deep frame up to the middle of January, they should be 
brought indoors, potted up in a good, stiff sofl and aUowed to come 
along slowly in a cool house. Increase the temperature a httle when 
they are once under way, but don't subject them to a hot, dry house 
at any time. Leftover plants can be planted out in the field and 
used again. 

ACHILLEA 

When you once get a row of AchiUea established, and get into 
the habit of cutting the flowers during the Summer months, you wiU 
never want to get along without it. I am speaking of Achillea 
Ptarmica "The Pearl," or, what is stiU better, Boule de Neige, a 
more double sort. 

The flowers of these AchiUeas come ten or more on a graceful 
stem and resemble those of Feverfew although only about one- 
fourth their size; they are fine for bouquets or design work, lasting 
for days. No other perennial can get along in poorer soil, or with 
less care, or is hardier. You can easily increase your stock by divi- 
sion, which is best done by the early part of September; or, if you 



244 FRITZ BAHR'S CQMMERGIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 86. — ^Achillea millefolium rosbum {left) and A. Ptabmica plore plbno 
"The Pearl." The former, with its soft, feathery foliage and large heads of pinl 
flowers is most showy in June and July and should be in every hardy border. The 
latter, easily grown, is hard to beat as a source of white cut blooms for Summer 
boucjuets, alone and with other flowers 

like, sow seed under glass in January. The plants will, if planted 
out in May, flower by July, and there are bound to be some which 
come single, or are not as double as others. Pull these up. 

Achillea millefolium is a desirable perennial, flowering by the 
end of June. The flowers are quite different from those of "The 
Pearl," resembling more those of Spiraea Anthony Waterer (with 
smaller heads, of course) against a setting of beautiful green, 
feathery foliage. You can grow it from seed or divisions of the old 
clumps. 

ACHYRANTHES 

No matter how many irregular borders of shrubs and perennials 
you may lay out and plant, there always wiU be more or less formal 
bedding done, not only in the public parks, but in the home grounds, 
too. It is for this that you want border plants with colored foUage, 
to which class the Achyranthes belong. They come in various 
shadings. A. Lindenii, perhaps the most popular dark red, with 
small leaves, can be sheared into almost any shape. A. Emersonii 
has a dark crimson-colored, round leaf, and A. Gibsonii has a pointed 
greenish leaf with yellow markings. All make fine borders, can be 
used in connection with Alternantheras, or come in handy for 
window boxes to go with other plants. You can propagate from 
cuttings the same as with Goleus, but it takes longer to grow a fair- 



ACONITUM, AGROGLINIUM, ADIANTUM 245 

sized plant. They do not require as warm a house over Winter as 
Coleus. 

ACONITUM (MONKSHOOD) 

When your customer wants a perennial that will do in the 
shade, where Anchusas and Larkspurs won't, it is time for you to 
recommend Aconitum. With a few weU-estabUshed clumps on your 
own grounds you will always have stock to draw and propagate 
from by division. The plants grow about 2 ft. and a little over in 
height and. flower during June. Sparks' variety, with rich blue 
flowers, is considered one of the best. 

AGROGLINIUM ROSEUM 

Acrocliniums are graceful everlasting flowers of a most pleasing 
deUcate pink color. Any florist wfll have plenty of occasions during 
Winter, especially around the hoUdays, to use them to good ad- 
vantage. Ry combining them with Statice and soft greens a beau- 
tiful, low centerpiece can be arranged or a basket can be filled which 
will appeal to many who perhaps cannot afford expensive fresh cut 
flowers. As with other everlastings, don't wait to cut the flowers 
until they are wide open; gather them just as they are opening, put 
them up in bunches of twenty-five, and hang them, heads down, in 
an airy shed where they can remain until late Fall. It is weU to 
sow the seed right outdoors in early May. 

ADAM'S NEEDLE 

See Yucca 

ADIANTUM (MAIDENHAIR FERN) 

Adianlum cuneatum has been grown by florists since long before 
our time, and not so many years ago it was practically alone in the 
field of greens for indoor use, whether for the bride's bouquet, the 
funeral design, or the corsage. Since then a long row of new Adian- 
tums, of which Adianlum Farleyense gloriosa (the Glory Fern) is one 
of the most beautiful, and all kinds of other greens have been in- 
troduced to take the place of the old form. 

We are using today a greater variety of greens than ever before ; 
some are shipped thousands of miles, others are grown under glass 
by specialists to supply the demand. Whereas, years ago, one could 
hardly find a florist who didn't have at least a few pots or a part of 
a bench devoted to the growing on of Adianlum cuneatum to meet 
his requirements, most men now find it cheaper to purchase the cut 
fronds (which, if properly handled, will keep in good condition for 
many days) and devote their time to other things. 

Those who want to grow Adiantum should have a house which 
can be kept at not less than 60 deg. The plants are grown from 
spores, the same as almost all of the so-called table ferns. This is 



246 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



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Fig. 87. — Maidenhair Fern (Adiantum 
cunbatum). Although there are several 
newer varieties, of Adiantum, the old Maid- 
enhair Fern is still popular and hard to 
beat as a light, airy green for the florist 
shop. If you have a warm house, a few 
plants always come in handy in Winter 



best done during the Winter 
months. Expose the little soil 
you need for a few pans or 
bulb-dishes underneath the 
grate or a clean bed of hot 
coals in your boiler for fifteen 
minutes or so to kill all weeds. 
Thoroughly soak the filled 
pans before sowing them, 
gently press the spores into the 
surface, and cover the pans 
with a pane of glass. After 
that, rather than water with 
the can, place the pan in a dish 
of water until the soil is well 
soaked again. The object is 
not to disturb the seeds. At 
all times keep the surface moist 
and maintain as near 65 deg. 
as possible in the house or 
frame you have the pans in. 
The young plants can later 
on be transplanted into a fine 
mixture of mellow loam and sand, and when large enough should be 
potted up. For later potting a sandy loam with one-fourth cow ma- 
nure will suit them nicely. If you want to grow plants on benches, 
don't allow hot water or steam pipes to be directly under or near the 
bottom of the benches. These ferns prefer a cool footing and a well- 
drained, moist soil, but plenty of heat on top, and shade for bench 
culture. Early Spring is the best time to get busy, and well-estab- 
lished plants in 3J^-in. pots should be used. 

For pot culture the treatment is the same, and whenever you 
get specimens in 5- or 6-in. pots they may be divided; this is best 
done with plants which have been cut down and after they have been 
kept in a cool house for awhile to rest. Toward early Spring, when 
they again show signs of life, you can cut them into four or five 
pieces, pot them up and bring them into warmer quarters. 

AGATH^A (BLUE DAISY) 
The Blue Daisy, as the name indicates, is not a show flower, 
nor one on which a fortune can be made, but belongs to the same 
class as double Sweet Alyssum, Forget-me-not and Pansy. Every 
retail grower always has among his customers a good number who 
want these flowers during the Winter and early Spring months 
whenever they can be had, and the Blue Daisy, for the space it 
occupies and the care it requires, brings in as much as, if not more 
than, anything else grown on the place. You don't want a house 



AGATILEA, AGERATUM, AKEBIA 247 

nor a bench full of it; but if you retail the flowers you grow at home 
you should at least have a few plants along the edge of the Carnation 
bench to cut from. It flowers from Fall until Spring, and since 
you can use it with almost any other flower, it is excellent for design 
work. 

You can grow Agathaeas from seed. Out of the plants you get 
that way select one or two of the very best and after that propagate 
from cuttings, which root easily during the early Spring months. 
Grow the young stock on in pots, and by August plant out either 
along the edge of a Carnation bench, or on a bench by itself. If you 
grow a few plants there is bound to come a time during the Winter 
months when the flowers will come in very handy. 

AGERATUM 

Owing to their beautiful shades of blue, their free flowering 
quahties, and their easy culture, the Ageratums are not only becom- 
ing more popular every year, but also, from the florist's standpoint, 
are becoming more important as bedders to be sold to his customers, 
and for cut flowers. 

We have named varieties ranging from dwarf to tall sorts. If 
you want a bed or border of just one color, by aU means plant named 
sorts grown from cuttings, but if you need Ageratums for cut flowers 
or plants in 3M- or 4-in. pots in bloom by the middle of May, sow 
seed of Blue Perfection, or some other tall sort, by the middle of 
February and grow on in a 50-deg. house. 

If you need blue in a window box, Ageratum is the thing to use. 
If you want to grow stock from cuttings, lift a few field plants in 
FaU, pot them into 6s, cut back a little and keep in a 50-deg. house. 
By the end of January, and from then on, you can take cuttings 
every week. But almost as cheap a way, and an even better one, 
is to purchase your rooted cuttings from the wholesale grower. 
Such cuttings in 2H-in. pots by the first of AprU will make bushy 
plants in fuU bloom by the end of May. 

Ageratum Fraseri is one of the latest introductions, and one of 
the best bedders of aU, growing about 8 in. in height and flowering 
continuously all Summer. 

AKEBIA QUINATA 

If you handle hardy chmb ng plants, which many of your cus- 
tomers prefer to the annual ones, you wiU have caUs for Akebias. 
Their clean, Cloverleaf-like foliage stays green away into Fall, and 
the small, sweet-scented blossoms appear in July. The vines will 
cfing to woodwork or brick, and are really adapted for porches only 
where you can support them on wire. 

When you order your other chmbers from the nurseryman, 
include just a few Akebias and pot them up so they can be planted 



248 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

any time during Summer and Fall, or kept over until the following 
Spring. 

ALOYSIA CITRIODORA (LEMON VERBENA) 

Your bedding stock, no matter how large the assortment, is 
never complete without Lemon Verbenas. Don't be obUged to say 
to your customer: "We can fill your entire hst of stock wanted 
with the exception of the Lemon Verbenas." It isn't what you make 
on the few plants sold during May and June that counts; you should 
carry them to oblige your customers. 

When you plant them out you can grow six-foot specimens 
which, with their deUghtful odor, belong in every flower garden; 
but for stock to propagate from, it is as well to grow them on in 
5- or 6-in. pots. Keep the plants in a cool house all Winter and 
start them into growth about February. The new wood will give 
you the cuttings, which root easily with a little bottom heat; pot up 
later on and keep shifted. 

The man in need of only one hundred or so plants, instead of 
bothering with raising his own stock, will find it cheaper, I think, 
to buy 2-in. stock about April first, shift it into 3j^-in, pots, and 
be done with it. 

ALTERNANTHERA 

There are many florists who go through life without ever han- 
dling or growing Alternantheras, for these plants are really only 
useful for carpet bedding or grave planting. 

You cannot help but admire a well laid out and properly kept 
carpet bed or border. You praise not only the plants in it, but also 
the man who was able to lay out the design, and the one who carried 
out the planting. Such beds in the public parks or large grounds 
always attract well-deserved attention. To the average florist, 
however, Alternantheras don't mean much; in fact, I often think the 
men located in the smaller towns could to their, own advantage 
push carpet bedding a Uttle more. There are occasions when such 
a formal bed will act as a splendid advertisement. The first thing 
people wUl do when looking at one is to wonder who did the laying 
out, and who furnished the plants. 

Alternantheras also make fine border plants where something 
low is wanted. In full sunlight, if not planted too close, their beauti- 
ful, ornamental leaves are always greatly admired. 

Give Alternantheras heat, sun and moisture and they will 
grow in almost any soil. They stand still during the Winter months 
even in a house where Roses do their best. Take cuttings during 
early August and place them closely in flats fiUed with half soil and 
half sand; they will root in a few days in a frame where they can 
remain until September. Bring indoors to a light bench, and a house 
of not less than 55 deg., and let them remain there until the end of 



ALTERNANTHERA, ALTIMIA 



249 




Fig. 88. — Double Hollyhocks. Few plants are more showy or more stately 
than the double Hollyhock and every retail grower should have a display of them 

on his home gromids 



March, when the first hotbed is ready. Pot up the cuttings sepa- 
rately in 2-in. pots, and plunge in the hotbed, where they can remain 
until wanted for bedding. Among the sorts usually carried are 
A. brilliantissima, the best red shade; A. Swybolde, a good yellow 
and a heavy grower; A. Carroll, a dark bedder, dwarf red; and 
A. aurea nana, dwarf yellow. 

ALTH^A (HOLLYHOCKS) 

One cannot very well imagine a so-called "old-fashioned" garden 
without Hollyhocks. While their stay is but a short one compared 
with that of other flowers, yet when they are in full bloom hardly 
anything else can get itself noticed. 
The day is past when we grew Hollyhocks, picked the individual 
flowers oflF the stems and sold them by the hundred (for as little as 
thirty or forty cents) to be used on toothpicks for design work; the 



250 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

floral pillow or the wreath in those days was covered solid with the 
flowers before anything else went on it. We no longer call this 
artistic, nor have we the time to give to such work; yet Hollyhocks 
are greater favorites among herbaceous plants than ever. 

The florist has call during both Spring and Fall for field grown 
plants, or such as have been grown on in pots; he should use them 
whenever planting a hardy border, or when asked to furnish an 
assortment of hardy stock. With their colors of white, yellow, red, 
and beautiful shades of pink they can be used in almost any color 
arrangement, and but very few people object to them in their gardens. 
Those who don't like them double can have handsome single sorts. 

To grow a strong, healthy Hollyhock, sow in the open about 
July fifteenth. Don't make use of a heavily manured, finely sifted 
soil and a shaded frame; maybe you have seen them grown by the 
roadside or near the fence on a farm, without the least sign of rust 
or other disease, while plants grown with the greatest care elsewhere 
have proved a failure. Transplant the seedhngs later on and 
keep them cultivated; that is more important than keeping them 
soaked with the hose. By the end of September you will have 
heavy stock ready to seU, or to plant where it is to flower the next 
Summer. If you cut most of the leaves off when transplanting, 
the plants soon become reestablished and make a few large leaves 
by the time they are cut down by frost. In the case of the man 
who- retails a few hundred plants each Spring it is as well to take 
up every other one, letting the rest remain to flower. 

Usually, it is best to cover the plants lightly over Winter, 
although plants need but little protection when well established. 
Always carry a few over in frames; they might be sold in the Spring 
if not needed to replace winterkilled specimens. Or they can.be 
planted out to flower. However, the best plants will be those that 
were transplanted about August, and given a foot or so of space 
at that time. You can also sow seed about September and pot the 
seedhngs up ; keep them in a cool house and shift so as to have heavy 
plants in 4s by April ready for planting out. But you won't get the 
same results as from those sown in July. 

Hollyhocks can hardly be considered good cut flowers, yet there 
are sometimes occasions that call for the cut stalks. In that case a 
good way is to cut them a day or so before they are wanted, and 
place them deep in water in a dark, cool place. Freshly cut and ex- 
posed in a hot room they won't last three hours. 

ALYSSUM 

The double Sweet Alyssum is a very useful little plant for the 
retail grower. A few plants along the edge of the Carnation bench 
wiU not interfere in the least with the Carnations, but wiU furnish 
you with flowers from Fall until Spring, just what you want when 



ALYSSUM, AMARYLLIS 



251 



having to make up a wreath or other floral design. Cuttings rooted 
during Winter will make 2H-in. or larger plants which you need to put 
with other stock when filling window boxes, hanging baskets or vases; 
or you can plant them as a border around a Geranium, Petunia or 
Ageratum bed, where they will flower up to November. 

The dwarf single flowering Alyssums are also much used for 
the edging of beds and borders, and the florist sowing seed about the 
parly part of March can have little plants in fuU bloom by early 
May. Little Gem is the sort mostly grown on for that purpose. 

AMARYLLIS (HIPPEASTRUM) 

We are apt to give the name Amaryllis to quite a number of 
plants with bulbs and large Lily-shaped flowers which really do not 
belong to that species. As a matter of fact, the so-caUed Amaryllis 
which interests the florist belongs to the Hippeastrums. These two 
may be alike in appearance, but the AmaryUis, like the BeUa Donna 
Lily, doesn't flower 
until August, while 
the Hippeastrums 
come in bloom in 
February and on 
through March. 
Some of the hy- 
brids have gor- 
geous large flowers, 
and while they are 
not of great value 
to the florist, and 
while flowering 
bulbs come rather 
high, a display of 
plants in flower in 
the show house is 
bound to be a good 
advertisement and 
a drawing card. 
If you never seU 
a single plant, you 
should carry a few 
just the same. If 
you start out with 
flowering-sized 
bulbs, pot them up 
according to size in 
5-, 6-, or 8-in. pots, 
and carry them in 
a 55-deg. house. 



ill i' 


•■ ■• *^r *>; "■^s^ «■..•■' 




'-~-:.^-X-.'^''w. ^F-- 




^~— ■' . i--' ., s>^, _„ , 


^•"-;>^** 


«"WU.^_. ^^^^ 








^^^f -^S^^Sj: ' 


'* is, 





Fig. 89. — Single Hollyhocks. These, when displayed 
in masses are fully as desirable as the double sorts and, 
indeed, are frequently preferred by some of your patrons 



252 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

After they are through nowering they make their growth, so keep 
them dormant during Summer and then start them up again. 
In late Fall the plants in the large pots don't need repotting; give 
them a top dressing of well-rotted manure and soil thoroughly 
mixed. 

AMMOBIUM 

Ammobiums, like most of the other everlastings, are grown in 
great quantities by the European florists, and made use of during the 
Winter months, usually in design work. Here we have enough other 
flowers for such purposes; however, they should be classed among 
the desirable varieties to grow on for those who have use for ever- 
lastings. Their white flowers are produced in great masses and 
the culture of the plants, which are annuals, doesn't differ from 
that of Acroclinium. (See page 245.) 



AMPELOPSIS 

The Boston Ivy {Ampelopsis Veitchii) is a plant which the 
florist should carry not only during the Spring months in a dormant 
state, but all through the year in pots, so that a customer wishing 
to plant some, around a newly-finished residence perhaps, can do 
so at any time. Wherever there are stone, concrete or brick founda- 
tions the Ampelopsis can be planted and is being used more and more 
each year. It doesn't pay the florist to grow the plants on from 
cuttings rooted during August from half-ripened wood or from seed 
which takes two years to grow into a salable plant. Let your nur- 
seryman supply you with nice dormant, 18- to 24-in. stock, about 
March; pot it into 5s after cutting it back just a little — removing the 
tips is enough. Then give each plant a neat green stake. 

Carry the plants in a cool house and by the end of April they 
are just as well off outdoors in a frame, where they can remain all 
Summer, or until sold. Whether you or your customer plant them 
out be sure they are cut back to within 6 in. of the ground, for it is 
the new shoots that wiU cling to the wall, and the closer they start 
from the ground the better. If you cut the plants when they are 
potted up, you won't get as good looking plants, and you will have 
to cut them back again at planting time. If you want a still smaller 
and more graceful leaf than the ordinary Boston Ivy, plant Am- 
pelopsis Lowii, or if you desire something heavier and of ranker 
growth than the Boston Ivy use Ampelopsis Engelmannii. Some- 
thing stiU heavier but not quite as good for wall covering is the 
Virginia Creeper {Ampelopsis quinquefolia) . Pot some up of all four; 
they won't take up much space and they sometimes come in very 
handy. 



ANCHUSA, ANEMONE, ANTHERICUM 253 

ANGHUSA 

Anchusa italica, var. Dropmore, with its brilliant, dazzling 
blue flowers on 5- to 6-ft.-tall stems during June, is one of the de- 
sirable plants for the hardy border. 

We find that it pays us best to treat this plant like a biennial, 
sowing seed during early Spring under glass and later on planting 
the small stock in the field. By the following year the plants will 
be at their best. 

ANEMONE JAPONIGA 

This is without doubt the most beautiful of all late flowering 
hardy plants. Not only is it in bloom when almost everything else 
has gone, but the flowers when cut with 2-ft. stems will last in water 
for days. Varieties rosea superba and Queen Charlotte are both 
semi-double pink sorts — most unusual colors among our late flower- 
ing perennials which mostly come in shades of white, fight blue, 
yellow and brown. In many localities these Anemones are hardy 
only when pfanted on weU-drained soil, and when they receive, 
after being cut down by frost, a 10-in. layer of dry leaves and a cov- 
ering of manure; but they are well worth aU the trouble one goes to. 
Whirlwind is a fine white sort, also semi-double. 

Spring is the best time to plant these Anemones; plants out 
of SJ/^-in. pots will flower nicely the first season. If you wish to 
increase your stock, and have some field plants on hand, lift them, 
cut the roots in 1-in. pieces and lay in flats between layers of sand; 
keep them in a cool house, and by March place over a little bottom 
heat. Every piece wiJ grow into a plant, which should be potted 
up and planted out later. 

Anemone apennina 

While the Japan Anemones flower in late Summer and FaU the 
tuberous-rooted ones, to which Anemone apennina belongs, bloom 
in early Spring. To the florist they are interesting only because, if 
tubers can be secured, by planting them in Fall in bulb pans and 
gently forcing weU-rooted stock, he can get them to flower around 
Easter the same as Ranunculus. 

ANTHERICUM 

The florist shouldn't get along without Anthericum — it is too 
useful a plant. To begin with, we haven't a great many variegated 
plants, and among those we have, few are inexpensive or very 
hardy. Anthericum possesses both of these quafities. You can use 
it in a small state as a center plant in a fern dish, and when larger 
it will go weU in a plant arrangement in an indoor window box, or a 
Christmas basket. You can plant it and have it do weU in the shade 



254 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

where nothing else wiU grow, or you can give it full sunlight. That's 
quite enough reason for us to consider it a useful plant. 

A Mandatonum is a great improvement over the old variety; 
while not quite as large, it has more of a white border to its leaf. 
When you once have a stock in large pots, you will have no trouble 
in obtaining all the small plants you want by division during early 
Spring, or in fact, at any time during the year. Place the pieces 
having no roots in the sand with a little bottom heat. 

ANTIRRHINUM (SNAPDRAGON) 
Snapdragons are important cut flowers and money-makers for many 
florists. They can be successfully handled even on a small scale; 
besides, they form one of the crops to follow Chrysanthemums. 
While it is possible to have Snapdragons in flower around Christ- 
fiias, it is during the early Spring months that we have them at 
their best. When we display them at Easter time it is hard to have 
a customer take anything else. Rust has in a way caused quite a 
few florists to slacken somewhat in the growing of Snapdragons. 
There was a time, about twenty-five years ago, when this was con- 
sidered a disease that made the growing of Carnations almost im- 
possible, yet it disappeared to a great extent. So let us hope it will 
let up on the Snapdragons. As far as is known, the best remedy, or 
rather preventive, is not to keep the plants too cool and not to 
wet the foliage any more than necessary, which sounds reasonable. 
Snapdragons are cool house plants and should never be exposed 
to a high temperature during Midwinter; as the days get longer 
and everything under glass takes a jump, it doesn't matter whether 
the temperature in the house stays up over night around 55 deg. 
and over, but this would never do during December or January. 
Keep at 50 deg. or a little under, but avoid excessive moisture in the 
house. 

For Midwinter Flowering 

For early flowering the plants should be grown from cuttings 
rooted during May and June, the plants grown on in pots, shifted 
and kept pinched so 4-in. pot stock can be benched by the middle 
or end of August. If you use dwarf or medium tall sorts, which are 
best for early use, allow 12 in. between the plants and don't let them 
make flower stems until October. They will produce a good crop 
during November and December, and send up more shoots after 
that, and such as have been benched later may not start into flower 
until December; a great deal depends on weather conditions. Keep 
the flowering wood clear of lateral shoots, which, by the way, usually 
furnish ideal material for cuttings. 

To Follow Chrysanthemums 
The average florist is not so much interested in Snapdragons for 
Midwinter flowering, (which means having his benches occupied dur- 



ANTIRRHINUM 



255 



ing the Fall months when he 
needs them) but rather as stock 
to plant after the Chrysanthe- 
mums leave the benches. For 
that you should root cuttings 
about the end of August, or sow 
seed about July fifteenth. This 
will give you plants in 3}^-in. 
pots by the end of October or 
early November, and in most 
cases the soil in the 'Mum 
benches is good enough, but if 
you want to, add a layer of fresh 
soil before you spade it over. 
Stock planted around the middle 
of November in benches and kept 
in a 48-deg. house will not flower 
much before March. Another 
way is to plant on soUd beds fol- 
lowing Chrysanthemums and if 
you should have a house you 
want to keep just from freezing, 
the Snapdragons can stand any- 
thing over 32 deg. They won't do 
anything in such, a house, but 
if you Uft a plant about Febru- 
ary you will find tbat there are 
all kinds of new roots ; and if you 
start about March to keep the 
house near 50 deg. you will find 
that in a short time the plants 
catch up with the others, and by 
the middle of April are a mass of 
buds, and you wiU have a great 
crop of flowers during May. 
However, I don't think there is 
a great deal gained by it, not, at 

least, for the man with limited space; by planting on benches fol- 
lowing early Chrysanthemums and keeping the house near 50 deg. 
you can have your main crop cut by early May or the first of that 
month, and have the bench ready for bedding stock, which appeals 
to the man who gives his Geraniums and other bedding stock the 
final shift around that time. 

If you want a crop of Snapdragons for Memorial Day, it is time 
enough to root cuttings during early February or to sow seed in 
January and bench or plant out 2J^-in. stock about March twen- 
tieth. It doesn't take nearly as long in Spring to get the plants 



^^^^^^ iiaPI^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^H 




E^'^9 







Fig. 90. — Snapdragon (Antirrhinum). 
This is a favorite with everybody. Of 
late years it has been largely grown by 
florists under glass, for which purpose 
some excellent varieties have been 
brought out 



256 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

to flower as during Midwinter. Snapdragons, like Sweet Peas, can 
be planted any time during the Winter months; it is just a matter 
for those who want every available foot of bench space for bedding 
stock to figure out how to squeeze in a crop of them, between the 
Chrysanthemums and the time in Spring when he needs the benches 
for his pot stock. 

Florist's Sorts 

Nelrose, Enchantress, Silver Pink and Ramsburg's Light Pink 
are all desirable sorts; in fact, if you have only space for a few hun- 
dred plants, you will do every bit as well to plant just pink shades 
alone. Nelrose not only makes a fine cut flower, but from rooted 
cuttings in February you can grow by the end of May 5-in. pot 
plants in full bloom which are bound to sell; for bedding, also, this 
sort is to be recommended. If you desire the long 4-ft. stem ones 
for early Spring flowering, the tall growing sorts should be used, 
for they are, after aU, the showiest and can also be grown for out- 
doors. With the exception of the very dwarf sorts, all Snapdragons 
should have support of some kind to keep the stems straight. 

There is offered today an excellent strain of seed of some of the 
popular varieties, and quite a number of growers prefer growing 

from seed entirely, claiming the 
plants are more vigorous and 
more rust-resisting; the sorts 
come almost true from seed. 

To grow from cuttings 
when you once have stock on 
hand and the plants are in good 
shape is easiest and quickest. 



Snapdragons for Outdoor 
Planting 

The average florist has not 
a great deal of use for Snap- 
dragons du,ring the Summer 
months, but \ for all of that he 
should plant out a nice lot of 
23^-in. stock for cutting; they 
will be especially fine during 
September, with its cooler 
nights. Such plants wiU also 
furnish the very best kind of 
cuttings for such stock as you 
want to grow on for Winter. 

Besides what you want for 
your own requirements, a good 




Fig. 91.— Aquilegias grown under glass. 
Field-grown clumps lifted in Fall, over- 
wintered in frames and planted in a solid 
bed m February in a Violet house temper- 
ature will start to flower in April. The 
cut flowers are fine keepers and with then 
Maidenhair Fern-like foliage are much in 
demand. They should be more used 



ANTIRRHINUM, AQUILEGIA, ARAUGARIA 257 

stock of plants in 23^-m. pots should be grown on for the Spring trade. 
Everybody planting annuals for cut flowers is sure to include Snap- 
dragons. You can sell a great many if you happen to have a few 
plants of a good strain in flower at the time of planting out, and it 
is as well to grow on a few S^/^-in. or even 4-in. pot plants, such as are 
ready to flower. Many people are wiUing to pay a little more to 
obtain plants which will flower shortly after being planted out. 

AQUILEGIA (COLUMBINE) 

Get better acquainted with the Golumbines, for they rank with 
the leaders in perennials. They are among the very first to send up 
in Spring their beautiful Adiantum-like fohage and weU above it 
stems covered with graceful, spurred flowers in a great variety of 
colors. Whether you use Aquilegia cserulea (the blue Rocky Moun- 
tain Columbine), Aquilegia vulgaris (the European Columbine), the 
common American form, A. canadensis, the white A. calif ornica, 
the golden A. chrysantha, or the endless varieties coming out of a 
package of seeds of the long-spurred hybrids, aU of them are good. 
The more you see of Golumbines, the better you wiU like them. 

In Spring and FaU you can always dispose of field stock to your 
customers for their hardy borders. You can have a few plants in 
pots for planting out during the Summer months; you can use the 
flowers to cut from, and nothing goes better with them than their 
own foliage. Always place them in water for a few hours in a cool 
place before you send them out; they wiU last better. You can also 
use the plants for forcing under glass and have them in flower by 
the middle of AprU. They won't stand strong heat. Pot up 
some field clumps, which have been overwintered in a frame, about 
February tenth, and place them in a 45-deg. house; in a week they 
will get busy and start into growth. 

Old clumps can be divided into small pieces and replanted 
any time after August, but an easier and better way is to sow seed 
about February under glass, using a little bottom heat, and grow the 
httle plants on in a 50-deg. house in pots, to be planted out in May. 
They will not flower the first year, but you wUl get nice, heavy 
plants ready for sale by FaU; the following Spring your stock will 
be a mass of bloom during May and June, and when planted in the 
hardy border the foliage will usuaUy stay green aU Summer. Aqui- 
legias usually survive the most severe Winter, while a lot of our so- 
caUed perfectly hardy plants disappear by Spring. No matter in 
what soil or how misused, they are right there to greet you as soon 
as the Lilac buds begin to swell. 

ARAUGARIA (NORFOLK ISLAND PINE) 

What a lot of fine Araucarias were sold before the World War, 
when we imported them from Europe by the carload! Since then 



258 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

the smaller florist has hardly had a chance to obtain any of the few 
plants that are at present grown from cuttings in America. 

I have seen an attempt made in Eureka, California, to grow 
them on in lathhouses, and while apparently not very successful, 
I am sure we will yet succeed. Every florist will welcome their re- 
appearance and a chance to sell them at a reasonable price, for there 
is nothing more appropriate for Christmas in the way of a foliage 
or decorative plant, and they are equaUy good house plants. 

ARBORVIT^ 

See Thuya 

ARDISIA CRENULATA 

In spite of aU the fine Solanums which have been introduced in 
recent years the Ardisia is still the most stately of all the berried 
plants we have for Christmas, and no other plant with berries is 
likely to replace it for awhile. 

It will not pay anyone but the man who specializes in Ardisias 
to grow them; not that it is such a hard job, but you might say that 
two years are required to do it. The plants must have proper at- 
tention and be kept not only clean but growing in order to get 
something out of them. 

You can buy Ardisias for 
Christmas some weeks ahead 
and keep them in fme condi- 
tion by giving them a cool 
house. You no doubt have 
customers who are willing to 
pay a little extra for a berried 
plant which won't drop its 
foliage as quickly as the Cher- 
ries or Peppers; that's the time 
to mention Ardisias. Even 
after Christmas there are occa- 
sions when you can sell these 
beautiful plants. Don't grow 
them on yourself, but sell all 
you can. 

ARECA LUTESGENS 

This is one of the many 
useful Palms the florist carries. 

Fig. 29.-AREOA LUTEscENs. These Ajecas ^°^ hardiness it is not tobe 

make usable plants much more quickly compared With the Kentias, 

than the Kentias. While not as lasting or but it has a softer green color, 

as hardy, nevertheless they are most useful. • r i • „,v,„ll 

especially when three plants are grown in ^^ ^^^^ graceful m a small 

a pot state and wiU grow quicker 




ARECA, ARTEMISIA, ASPARAGUS 259 

from seed into a salable plant. Being less expensive than a 
Kentia we often use it when filling indoor window boxes, or even as a 
single plant in a 4-, 5- or 6-in. pot. As a rule it doesn't last as well, 
as a house plant, as other palms do; then again we find customers 
who appear to have better luck with it than with almost anything 
else. It doesn't pay to grow your own plants from seed; you are 
better off purchasing the different sizes wanted from the palm 
grower. 

ARTEMISIA LAGTIFLORA 

By the first week in September the perennial border isn't usudly 
overcrowded with flowers, that is, if you depend on perennials 
entirely. At any rate, it would be well to have there a few plants 
of Artemisia ladiflora. Here you have a stately plant with from 4- 
to 5-ft. stalks of Spiraea (Astilbe)-like flowers of a creamy color and 
sweet odor. No matter what else you may have in the border, these 
Artemisias wiU help to make the whole setting more beautiful. 
Increase from divisions of the old clumps, which can stand a little 
Winter protection. 

ASPARAGUS 

The average retail grower doesn't pay nearly enough attention to 
Asparagus Sprengeri, which constitutes one of the most valuable and 
useful of florist's greens. He will insist on trying to grow Carnations 
or other cut flowers on a bench that is, perhaps, too shady or too warm, 
and instead of devoting it to this Asparagus will keep on buying the 
cut green at a high price, and at the same time get no returns from what 
he does grow on that bench. 

I don't want to imply that you should pick out a dark corner 
to grow Asparagus in, or a spot where nothing else will thrive, but, 
especially in older houses, there are usuaUy places where a few plants 
could be grown either in benches, boxes, pots or hanging baskets, 
the cut greens of which wiU bring greater returns than anything else. 

Green of some sort you need every day in the year, whether 
you think best to charge for it or not when putting it along with 
a dozen Carnations, Roses or Freesias. A box of flowers is hardly 
ever complete without Asparagus, and there are times during the 
Winter months when the green you purchase comes as high as the 
flowers themselves; or being cut in California or Florida it is anything 
but satisfactory by the time it reaches you. There are a good many 
florists who save themselves quite a shock by not keeping a record 
just for one year of what money is paid out in the purchase of cut 
Asparagus. True, you may not be able to grow as good stock as 
the man who devotes houses to its culture, and it may be cheaper 
to buy what cut strings of Asparagus plumosus you need. But with 
Asparagus Sprengeri, even in a small way and with not the best of 
success, you can make it pay and pay well. 



260 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 93. — ^AspAHAGUS Spbengebi. This is the most popular and most useful of 

florist's greens today. It is of easy culture and can be made to pay in houses 

that are not ideal for growing cut flowers 



Culture of Asparagus Sprengeri 

We will not consider how the big fellow does, but rather how 
the florist with limited space can bring this about. 

Start out by purchasing good 3j^- or 4-in. pot plants when 
your bedding plant season closes; if you can, plant them out on a 
bench or solid bed, allowing not less than 12 in. of space each way. 
You can grow them in 6 in. of soil, but 8 in. or 10 in. is better, for 
the roots will soon go through the soil, and in a shallow bench often 
suffer. When a bench cannot be had, boxes, 8 by 10 in. inside meas- 
ure, or not quite so large, can be made and planted. Fit them in 
at the sides or end of some house where there is perhaps a little 
space going to waste. Plant three plants in a 10-in. bulb pan; or 
as good a way as any is to plant three in a 14-in. wire hanging basket. 
These baskets need not be hung up right away; place them in a 
frame if no other place can be had, and leave there until September, 
after which fasten the hangers and hang on a purlin or below some 
gutter — anywhere you can find a place, without interfering, of course, 
with a crop below. 



ASPARAGUS 261 

It is for each man to find out the best method and the best 
place to use. I never beUeved in carrying the plants over the second 
year. It can be done and is done with good results, but a yearly 
clean-up means more. From strong stock costing in the neighbor- 
hood of ten dollars per hundred you can cut greens from September 
on, 

In early Spring clean out the benches and use the space for 
something else, and then replant with new stock. These Asparagus 
plants are great feeders and should have liquid manure and a mulch 
during Fall and Winter. Don't strip every plant in early Fall. 
There are times when it is cheaper to buy what green youjwant, for 
your own won't spoil. Go slow about it, as it means twice as much 
to you with zero weather outdoors, when, usually, it is at a premium. 
Go over the hanging baskets once in awhile and see to it that there 
is enough moss around the edges, so that when you apply water the 
plants will get the benefit of it. This Asparagus doesn't differ from 
the garden variety in regard to always wanting moisture around 
its roots; you cannot grow either in a dry soil nor where drainage 
is lacking. 

Asparagus Sprengeri is easily, grown from seed, but if you only 
use a few hundred plants it hardly pays, since it is possible to pur- 
chase small stock at a reasonable price. Frequently you have call for 
Asparagus baskets in May and June for porch decoration. You may 
be able to use some of those you cut from during Winter, if you 
didn't cut them too close, but a better way is to make up the baskets 
fresh about April. A heavy fining of good sheet moss looks best, and 
about five 4-in. pot plants wiU in six weeks cover the sides, and 
with proper care look fine all Summer. 

You can also by June use the plants out of 4-in. pots for filling 
vases or window boxes for shady positions; they will do there 
when some other so-called hanging plants or vines will not. You 
should have a supply of small plants on hand during the Fall and 
Winter; for indoor window boxes to go with Boston Ferns they are 
just the thing. 

Asparagus plumosus nanus 

Aside from the fact that this variety is excellent for cutting 
when planted out and that it often can be used where a Sprengeri 
won't do, it is of still greater value to the florist as a pot plant in 
the smaUer sizes. So much so that every retail grower should 
always have a stock consisting of 2-, S}4-, 4- and 5-in. plants on 
hand. Good plants in 5- ot 6-in. pots will do for cutting and the 
others come in handy when calls are made for plants to be used in 
fiUing baskets, pans and dishes. 



262 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 94. — ^Asparagus plumosus. While primarily a decorative green, this 

- should be carried by every florist, particularly the smaller sizes (io from 2- to 

5-in. pots) to be used in fern dishes, indoor window boxes and made-up plant 

baskets 

After September you start filling fern dishes and can use 2-in. 
A. plumosus. Some people even prefer their dishes filled entirely 
with it. . In the less expensive ones you often use a bushy plant for 
the center instead of the higher priced Cocos. During Christmas 
week you want the plants again for plant baskets. Small Cin- 
cinnati Begonias, say three plants to an 8-in. bulb pan, and about 
four Asparagus plumosus will do nicely. You need them with other 
flowering plants, and especially with "bare-legged" Poinsettias, 
and all through the Winter you want them, with an extra heavy 
supply again for Easter week. What is left after that keep shifted 
and grow on into larger pots for cutting. 

It will pay to grow the plants on from seed, or, in order to save 
time, to purchase the small seedlings from the fern specialist at 
prices in the neighborhood of ten dollars per thousand. A. plumosus 
needs a little more than a Carnation house temperature, yet if you 
have well-established plants by Fall they can get along there; they 
won't make much growth, but they will stand it. 

Don't try to grow the long strings on a small scale, it doesn't 
pay; they are only used for special occasions. If you grow enough 
of the pot plants to supply your wants you can afford to let the 
man who is properly equipped make a little money by supplying 
what you want in long strings. 



ASPIDISTRA 



ASPIDISTRA LURIDA 
The one decorative plant which neither neglect nor kindness is very 
likely to kill, and the one which can be used for fifty different decora- 
tions during the Winter months and come out on top the following 

Spring. 
A shapely 6-in. Aspidistra, particularly one of the variegated 
forms, with clean, shiny leaves, is not only the very best of house 
plants, but an attractive one, too. Whether it is in the bright sun 
of the bay window or at the foot of the front stairway with never 
a ray of light, but where icy air strikes its leaves every time the 
door opens during the Winter months, seems to make but little 
difference. Not only has every florist customers who want the har- 
diest palm or foUage plant he can recommend, but he himself has 
plenty of use for such. To gradually work up a good number of 
Aspidistras means putting money in the bank. 

I had occasion while a young man to work with a firm by which 
these Aspidistras were grown on by the thousands, and to those 
who are anxious not only to keep in good condition the plants they 
have, but to see them increase and grow, these notes may be of assis- 
tance. 




Fjg. 95. — ^Aspidistra luhida. This is the hardiest of all the decorative plants the 

flbrist carries and it will outlast anything else as a house plant. You run some risk 

of becoming Overstocked with good Aspidistras 



264 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

The old plants in 5-, 6-, and 8-m. pots were never disturbed 
during the Winter months, but kept in a rather cool house. By the 
first part of May, however, every plant of over 5-in. stock was taken 
out of the pots, divided into pieces and put in 2- and 3-in. pots, and 
these were plunged up to the rims in a hotbed with a high enough 
frame so the tips of the leaves wouldn't touch the glass. The glass 
was shaded to prevent sunburn, and very little air was given. The 
plants were watered but Uttle, but were sprayed with warm water 
three times and more each day. In about eight weeks, whQe there 
wasn't any apparent increase in the number of leaves per plant, the 
pots were full of heavy white roots and the rhizomes began to form 
eyes. The plants then received a shift into 4s and the pots were 
again plunged up to the rims in a fresh hotbed. By September 
the last shift was given into 5s and another hotbed, after which 
the plants were kept in a close atmosphere. By the end of October, 
when the stock was brought in, some plants would have up to fifteen 
leaves, and others, of course, less; the plants in 4- and 5-in. pots in 
May got to be 6- and some even 8-in. specimens under the same 
treatment. You may think this altogether too much trouble, but 
it is nevertheless one way to make Aspidistras grow into money. 
You cannot do it by keeping them under a bench in a coldhouse. 




Fig. 96. — ^A Field of Asters. Well-built double flowers of large size and good 
color borne on long stems are needed if Asters are to prove valuable property for 

the florist 



ASTERS 



265 



ASTERS 

To make money out of Asters you must grow the latest and best sorts. 
Grow them well, and if possible, avoid the annual Aster glut. 

Asters are among those flowers which are today better grown 
than ever. New sorts, most of them originated in this country, are 
producing flowers of a size emd length of stem never known in former 
times. But any and all of them, old and new, rank among the 
most important of Summer flowers. 

The retail grower doesn't have to worry about whether or not it 
pays in August and part of September to ship cut Asters to the whole- 
sale market, but he should try to have a supply of flowers from 
early to late Summer. The man in the retafl business never knows 
at what moment a call may come in for an order in which cut Asters 
can be used to good advantage, and even if you don't use all of the 
flowers you grow in the field not much harm is done. 

By using the different sorts and giving them good handling, 
you may have flowers from the latter part of June up to November. 
We have sections where it seems almost out of the question to grow 
good Asters, no matter what one does nor how good the seed; or 
we may have off years when the flowers are not as good. But wher- 
ever Asters can be grown, every florist should have a good showing 
of them, and ever strive to produce better stock than the ordinary, 
for it is that kind that seUs 
and brings a fedr price when 
ordinary stock cannot be 
given away. Take, for in- 
stance, a vase of extra well 
grown branching Asters and 
display it in your store along- 
side of a short-stemmed, small 
sort; it wiU be the big fellow 
that sells. Try to grow As- 
ters that your customers will 
buy because they are so much 
better than any they have in 
their own gardens. That's 
the kind that wfll pay you. 

Cultural Notes 

Almost anyone can sow 
a package of Aster seed in 
the garden. If the weather 
conditions are at all favor- 
able they will grow and later 
on make a fine show. But 
you, as a florist, should man- 




Fig. 97. — Dostalbk's Aster (grown hy. 
Ajdton Dostalek, Glericoe, III.) This beau- 
tiful Aster, white overlaid with pink and 
nearly six inches across, is the result of 
crossing the large single Japanese Aster 
with double sorts 



266 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 





: p;^ 


k ' . • , ■ 


•?"-J»'"- ■■ f^i'i ' 'iC . son- " ' 








^fe 




:;..,;^. 


lia^/^^^>#.*^- 



Fig. ^?: — Bali/s Improved Aster. A handsome plant is this remarkable Aster 
which resembles, more than anything else, a well-grown Ghrysanthemiun. Being 
of the late branching variety, it is especially valuable as a cut flower, its long stems 
supporting the large double flowers perfectly. It is indeed an American Astier of 

great merit 

age to have your flowers coining along either long before or long 
after, so it will pay you to make the first sowing early in 
March under glass. Queen of the Market is stiU considered one of 
the best of the early ones, the same as it was in 1889 when I got my 
first package of seed of the variety from the introducers, Vilmorin 
and Andreux of Paris, France. 

There is this to be said about these early ones: Stunt the plants 
once and you might as well throw. them out. If you want large flowers 
on fair-sized stems, keep the plants going at all times. You can sow 
Queen of the Market in a flat; if allowed to remain in a flat after 
being transplanted once the plants will flower right there. How- 
ever, keep them shifted and in a 48-deg. house, then plant in a frame, 
with glass protection until danger from frost is over, and you most 
Ukely wUl have plants in flower by the middle or end of June. Early 
Wonder is another good sort, and as a second early the Improved or 



ASTERS 



267 



Qrego Aster is excellent for cut 
flowers. Both or all three of 
these Asters may be grown un- 
der glass in benches; the only 
trouble is that the average re- 
tail grower has anything but 
space to spare for them around 
April and May. 

It is the late branching 
sorts, hovfever, which give you 
long stems and flowers almost as 
large as you find among the 
Chrysanthemums. Such, if 
wanted late, can just as well be 
sown outdoors and transplanted 
later on into the field. Now 
and again somebody will advise 
us to avoid much manure in our 
Aster bed; then, later on, some 
private gardener brings us a 
bunch of Asters twice the size 
of our own, and on examina- 
tion we find that he grew them 
right alongside some Melons in 





Fig. 100. — ^Thb Single Aster reminds one 
of a Shasta Daisy, but this bloom actually 
measured five inches across. I predict 
a great future for these Asters which, 
before long, we will have- coming true from 
seed in all colors 



Fig. 99. — ^The Late Branching Aster. 
This type, of American origin, closely re- 
sembles the Chrysanthemum, not only 
in size of flower but also in length of stem 



the garden where the soil is 
just fuU of manure. Asters, in 
order to bear the big flowers, 
need a rich soil and not too 
much water, but aU the cul- 
tivation you can give them. 
Among the florist's sorts, 
BaUs' White has proved a 
splendid late kind. 

Asters Under Glass 

The florist who has the 
space can plant such sorts as 
Grego, Astermum, Beauty 
Aster and Sensation under 
glass on a solid bed, and in a 
weU ventilated house can 
make them a paying crop. 
Plant about 10 in. apart, and 
as the plants begin to touch 
each other remove the small- 
er side branches and allow 



268 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 101. — ^The Improved Comet Astkr. 

This is one of the most desirable sorts 

for early and midseason use 



five or six of the strongest steins 
to remain. If the weather isn't 
too hot, Asters of the later sorts 
can be grown to perfection; on 
those of the branching type 
stems 30 in. and over, with 
large flowers can be had. 

Single Sohts 
Of late years a fine strain 
of single Asters has been worked 
up, of which the white, Ught 
pink, rose and Hght blue are the 
most desirable colors. Many 
people prefer them to the double, 
and they are particularly well 
adapted for use in cut flower 
baskets or centerpieces, 

AsTEBS FOR Spring Sales 
Every retail florist has call 
for Aster plants during the Spring bedding-plant season. It is always 
weU not to carry just one sort, but to have both the best there is and 
a less expensive strain. One way is to sow out, about the first of 
March, midseason and late sorts and pot the seedlings up in 2j^-in. 
pots. For ordinary stock, sow in rows in a frame; either transplant 
once, or sell right out of the rows they are sown in. The man who 
pushes the sale of Aster plants out of a frame in Spring, is Kkely to 
realize fifty or seventy-five cents per dozen for the stock and to sell 
enough plants, so that he really needn't care if he gets left with a 
few hundred flowers in the field in September; he will have made 
his money in May and June. 

Hardy Asters 

If you handle perennials at all, you should work up a good 
stock of hardy Asters. Whether used as single plants in the hardy 
border or for mass effect, few plants are more effective during 
September and October. Besides that, they are good cut flowers, 
lasting for days. Such sorts as Novi-Belgii Chmax, with its Hght 
blue flowers 1-in. in diameter and over, and the White Climax, 
are especially to be recommended. When you cut the flowers treat 
them as you would the Chrysanthemums, placing them deep in 
water for about twelve hours in a dark, cool place; after that they 
will last in gOod condition for a week or more. Among the hardy 
Asters, or Michaelmas Daisies, there are sorts such as Novi-Belgii 
Cleopatra (heliotrope) and Chapmanni (blue). They wiU grow 
4 to 5 ft. in height. 



ASTERS, ASTILBE 



269 



Among the dwarfer Alpine sorts we find excellent June-flowering 
forms for planting along the edge of a perennial bed, but they are 
not as suitable for cut flowers. Of the taller FaU-flowering 
varieties it w 11 pay well to have a long row planted out, if for no 
other purpose than to supply cut flowers. If your customers have 
a chance to see them, you are bound to sell plants as well. 



ASTILBE (SPIR^A JAPONICA) 

Spiraea jqpomca, ot which there are today some beautiful hybrids, is 
usually brought into flower by the florist for Easter. They make 
showy pot plants, and he is enabled to sell them at reasonable rates 
compared with other stock but they are most useful for decorative 
purposes, and such beautiful sorts as Gladstone, Queen Alexandra, 
and others can also be used as cut flowers. 

The clumps are potted up in November in pots just about large 
enough to hold them, after which they are placed underneath a 
bench in a cool house. Never permit the soil to become dry, and if 
for any reason the dormant clumps reach you in a dry state, instead 
of trying to water them after they are potted, throw them into a 
haK-barrel of water and let them soak for an hour before you pot 
them. Astilbes love moisture and soon show the effects of drought. 

By the end of January 
or thereabouts you wiU notice 
growth appearing, and that 
means that you must bring 
the plants up onto a sunny 
bench. If you grow only a 
hundred or two, it will pay 
you to provide saucers for 
the pots, and keep them 
filled with water. With 
Easter coming around the 
early part of April you can 
get the plants in flower by 
that time in a 55-deg. house. 
If, by the first week in March 
you don't notice signs of 
buds pushing their way above 
the foliage, let them have a 
few degrees more heat; or if 
they are too far advanced, 
move them to a 50-deg. house. 
They cannot stand heavy 
fumigating, but regular light 
doses to keep green fly down 
will not harm the foliage. 




Fig. 102. — Habdy Aster "Novi-Belgii" 
Climax. Hardy Asters are most valuable 
for late Summer and early Fall cut flowers, 
but as yet are not nesirly enough appreciated. 
The cut blooms keep in perfect condition 
for ten days 



270 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

ASTILBE DaVIDII 

While we have often tried to use forced clumps of Astilbe ja- 
ponica for planting out, and also clumps which had not been forced, 
we never had much success with either. They would do for a year 
or two, and then go back: On the other hand, Astilbe Davidii makes 
a fine plant, with spikes of pinkish flowers, for late June flowering, 
and there are several hybrids, among them A. Mwrheimii, which 
grow 6 ft. in height. 

These Astilbes can stand quite a little shade, but must have 
well-drained soil and plenty of water. Astilbe Arendsii has three or 
four beautiful pink varieties, all of which are splendid for the hardy 
border. You should recommend them to your customers. 

AUBRIETIA DELTOIDEA GR^CA (ROCK CRESS) 
To meet the demand for plants suitable for rockeries and for 
planting in the crevices of stone walls you should recommend the 
Rock Cress (Aubrietia deltoidea), the grxca variety of which has rather 
large blue flowers in early Spring. These Aubrietias form a dense, 
moss-Uke growth and cover things up in a short time, and for or- 
dinary purposes answer better than almost anything else. With an 
ever-increasing demand for rock gardens and the use of stones and 
boulders in the construction of dry laid walls or to form the sides 
of terraces or the background of a pool or water garden, the florist 
will be called upon to supply some of the plants used in connection 
with them to partly cover or soften things up. It won't hurt his 
prospects at aU to become acquainted with at least a few of the 
many sorts suitable for that purpose. 

When you once have a stock of Aubrietias, you can easily propa- 
gate them by division of the old plants. Pot them up into 3-in. * 
pots in a sandy sofl and place them in a coldframe around the early 
part of August. They can remain there all Winter or until you 
want to use them. 

AUCUBA JAPONICA AUREA 

These splendid plants are of such value for decorating, for the 
filling of window boxes, and as single specimens that they deserve 
more attention from the florist. 

Frequently an order calls for window boxes, especially for loca- 
tions on public buildings, banks or hotels, to be fiUed with foHage 
plants and English Ivies, and it is here that Aucubas can be used, 
no matter what the exposure. The same applies when they are used 
for decorative purposes; they go well in connection with palms and 
can stand abuse better than almost any other plant you carry in 
the greenhouse. Even freezing weather which would kiU an As- 
pidistra won't affect them. Therefore, they are subjects the retail 
grower needs and should carry a stock of, especially now, when there 
is anything but an oversupply of decorative stock from Europe. 



AUCUBA 



271 



Aucuba can be grown to perfection here. It would almost seem 
that some men located m parts of our great land where climatic 
conditions are less severe than in the East and Middle West should 
go into the growing on of Aucubas more extensively and advertise 
their many good points. We can get along without them, and the 
majority of florists do so today, but we would be better off if we all 
had a good stock on hand. 

Cuttings taken from the plants after the young growth made 
during June and July has hardened off a little will root freely during 
the Fall months in the propagating bench. Keep the httle plants 
in pots during Winter and plant out the following Spring in a cold- 
frame with good soil; either pot up in Fall or lift the plants with a 
good baU of soil and plant out on a soUd bed in a coldhouse. Plant 
out again the following Spring and by the middle of September 
root-prune the plants; this is done by taking a tiling spade and 
cutting the roots say 4 in. or so from the plants all around them. 
This will cause the remaining roots to make a lot] of small, 
fibrous rootlets, 
and when you lift 
them by the end of 
October you will 
have plants which 
will be large 
enough to go into 8- 
in. pots that won't 
notice the trans- 
planting at all. 
Keep them in a 

cool house over 

Winter and the 

following year 

plunge the pots 

outdoors and let 

them have a couple 

of good doses of 

liquid manure. 
Of course it is 

best for the aver- 
age retail grower, 

to purchase plants 

2 to 3 ft. in height 

in 6- or 7-in. pots; 

or even smaller 

stock suitable for ,,.,„„. . rr ^u- • ,■ ^ 

,. Fig. lOS.^AzALEA Anthony Koster. This is one of the 

immediate use. showy varieties belonging to the hardy class 




272 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

AZALEAS 
Azaleas such as we use for Winter flowering are among the most 
beautiful of all flowering pot plants. In spite of all that has been said 
to the contrary, I predict that the day will come when they will be 
successfully grown on in this coimtry, so that the retail grower will again 
be supplied with them, and bring them into flower for Christmas and 
all through the Wmter and up to Easter. 

I claim a great deal of credit is due the late C. W. Ward for 
having had sufficient faith in the climate and soil prevailing in 
Humboldt County, California, to induce him to go into Azalea cul- 
ture to the extent he did at Eureka. I made a special trip there, 
and beheld the plants by the tens of thousands, planted outdoors 
in all stages, and as many more of small grafted stock under glass. 
While the plants did not have the dark green leaves of those coming 
from Ghent, or grown in parts of Central Europe, they looked 
mighty promising, and whether or not they will ever be fully a 
success there, yet they will be grown somewhere in this country. 

The best we here at home could ever do with imported Azaleas 
was to keep the plants alive for a few years ; with all possible care and 
attention they would gradually go back, and finally be discarded. 
But we, and I know thousands of others, have missed them greatly 
since their importation has been prohibited. We may do just as 
much business at Christmas and Easter, but there is more to it 
than that. Having had Azaleas for so many years the display for 
the hoUdays doesn't seem complete without them, no matter hgw 
many fine Cyclamens, Poinsettias, Lilies or Rambler Roses we 
may have. On the other hand, if not being able to get them from 
Europe will ultimately result in growing them here, the result will 
be well worth waiting for. 

Azalea Hinodigiri 

This Azalea has become quite popular of late, especially as an 
Easter plant. Of rather dwarf habit, the specimens are literally 
covered with small, red flowers and so make very attractive pot 
plants. They are grown on in great quantities in this country, so 
that while it wouldn't pay the average florist to attempt this on a 
small scale, he can purchase his requirements in plants from four to 
six years old and treat them as coldhouse stock. They can either 
be planted outdoors and lifted in late Fall, potted up and carried 
in a frame (as they are not much affected hy ordinary freezing) or 
they can be handled in pots altogether. With just a little heat for 
four or five weeks, you can easily bring them into flower for Easter, 
and what are left unsold you can carry over for the next year. 

KuRUME Azaleas 
To many of the visitors to the National Flower Show, held in 
Inditoapolis in the Spring of 1922, the most interesting exhibit was 



AZALEAS 



273 





the collection of these Jap- 
anese Azaleas shown by the 
Henry A. Dreer Go. of Phil- 
adelphia. 

Whether we will be 
always short of Ghent 
Azaleas, or whether they 
will again become as plen- 
tiful as they were before the World War, 
there will still be a great future for the 
Kurume varieties in white, pink, and red, 
single and semi-double. What should 
make them still more popular is the fact 
that a fair-sized plant in a 5-in. pot can 
be produced from a cutting in about the 
same time it takes to grow a specimen 
Cyclamen. This means that the retail 
grower can sell the plants reasonably 
and still make a fair margin of profit. 

Easter may be Lily time and for 
those who don't so consider it we have 
plenty of variety in the way of suitable 
flowering pot plants. Yet outside of the 
French Hydrangeas nothing new has 
been introduced for many years and for 
the great majority of the smaller florists, 
Azaleas have been too expensive to handle. I look for these 
newcomers from Japan to prove a blessing. More than that, they 
are hkely to be grown on, by even small growers, when their culture 
is once understood. 

Native or Hardy Sorts 

In sections of the United States where Azaleas will overwinter 
outdoors and thrive, they should certainly be used freely in the 
planting of home grounds. They are all deciduous shrubs and with 
their bright colored flowers — which appear during May and eeirly 
June, mostly before the leaves — and especially when planted in 
groups, they brighten up the landscape as few other plants will. 

The nurseryman lists a number of varieties consisting of col- 
lected native stock, but while such plants, especially when in a 
small state, do nicely for planting out, there is more or less risk 
connected with them, especially if they are not watched carefully 
until they become well established. A better way by far is to obtain 
stock which has been grown on in the nursery for one or more years. 
It costs a Httle more, but with such plants there is hardly ever any 
loss. 



Fig. 104. — Azalea am(ena. 
One of the many fine hardy 
Azaleas. It is of rather low 
growth, evergreen emd a mass 
of bloom in early May. The 
flowers are pink with a tinge 
of purple 



274 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Most of these Azaleas are natives of the Southern Alleghanies 
and the Blue Ridge Mountains. Azalea calendulacea (Flame Azalea) 
brick red, yeUow and orange-colored, A. arborescens, a fine, June- 
flowering white, ^.roseum (canescens) a sweet-scented, May-flowepng 
pink, and A. Vaseyi, the Blue Ridge Mountain pink variety, are 
all desirable. 

BACHELOR BUTTON 
See Centaurea 

BAPTISIA (FALSE INDIGO) 

Bapti&ia australis, while not quite hardy with us and requiring 
a heavy covering over Winter, is nevertheless a fine perennial and, 
with its pea-shaped blue flowers, is very attractive. The plants grow 
about three feet in height.- You don't want many in the hardy 
border, but five or six specimens planted in a group wiU add to your 
assortment. 

Baptisias can be grown nicely from seed sown in- the green- 
house during January, or you can sow fresh-gathered seed outdoors 
in a frame where the seedlings will appear the following Spring. 

BEGONIAS 

The retail grower can greatly increase his assortment of flowering 

plants by paying more attention to the many beautiful sorts of flowering 

Begonias, among them some of the old favorites of long ago, which, of 

late years, we have partly discarded. 

When we mention Begonias we usually have in mind either 
Gloire de Lorraine or the beautiful introductions of J. A. Peterson 
of Westwood, Cincinnati 0., who has given us several that are today 
among our showiest Christmas plants. These sorts have almost 
put all other Winter-flowering sorts out of business, for when well- 
grown and in fuU bloom you can't compare any others with them. 
But it takes a specialist to grow a specimen Cincinnati Begonia, 
and you want a house fuU in order to do it right. The average 
retail grower can make more money by purchasing his requirements 
for the hoUdays, ready grown, than by attempting, with all his other 
work, to grow them on from cuttings. There is bound to be a time 
during the nine or ten months it requires to grow them when the 
plants wiU get a setback. There are other Begonias the smaller 
florist can grow, and do it nicely, though not altogether for Christ- 
mas, for he needs plants in flower all through the year. There are 
many beautiful ones to select from, not only for their flowers, but 
for their foliage as well. Among our customers there are stiU many 
who remember the sorts of yesterday and the fine house plants 
they made. 

Besides this, we have today splendid sorts for bedding purposes, 
which the retail grower should push. Some will require a little shade 



BEGONIAS 



275 




Fig. 105. — ^A Begonia Factory. A house of Glory of Cincinnati as grown by J. 
A. Peterson of Westwood, Cincinnati, O., who originated this grand variety which is 
now a specialty of large firms all over the country. The retail grower should pur- 
chase plants ready for the counter, rather than attempt to grow them on a small scale 

in order to do their best; others, again, will delight in full sun and 
often form a pleasant change from Geraniums, Salvias or Verbenas. 
Let us take up some of the principal florist's sorts, according to their 
present-day importance. 



Glory of Cincinnati 

This variety, which has almost completely replaced Gloire de 
Lorraine, is propagated through leaf cuttings. Well-matured 
leaves are taken the end of December and during January, and 
after the stems have been shortened a little, they are inserted 
with the leaves a little above the sand. You need clean sand, a 
rather moist atmosphere about the cuttings, and bottom heat of 
70 deg. However, if you like to grow some of your own stock, I 
wouldn't suggest beginning here ; I consider it far better to purchase 
2-in. stock and have it shipped to reach you as soon as you are 
through with the Spring rush and can begin to think about getting 
ready to stock up for the coming Fall. Shift these plants into 
3s, making use of a sandy, mellow loam, with just a little well 
decomposed cow manure and, of course, plenty of drainage in the bot- 
tom of each pot. From the end of June on the plants want an 
airy, cool house and a little protection against the hot rays of the 
sun. While they will grow, they won't make the same headway as 
during September and October. Examine them occasionally, and 



276 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



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Fig. 106. — Begonia Mrs. J. A. Peterson. 
This is of the Glory of CincLanati type with 
dark-colored bronze or reddish foliage. It 
is a desirable Christmas sort because of its 
habit, its bright, pink-colored flowers and 
the setting provided by its fine foliage. 
It appeared in 1915 



when you notice the fine roots 
starting to become potbound 
it's time for a shift. When 
you begin to fire don't let the 
house go down below 55 deg. ; 
in fact, keep it nearer the tJO- 
deg. point and give the plants 
full sunlight. Stake your 
plants and have the stakes of 
sufficient length to allow for 
further growth. 

The rest you will have to 
find out for yourself, no mat- 
ter how much you may have 
read of the experiences of suc- 
cessful growers. 

You may grow these Be- 
gonias at the first attempt 
without knowing even as much 
as is stated above, by hitting 
upon the correct method of 
treatment and by chance se- 
lecting the right house or 
bench, but it is more likely that you will improve through actual 
experiments and practice. Even if you don't succeed in producing 
6- and 8-in. specimens covered with so many flowers that you can't 
find a leaf' — ^just masses of pink blossoms — and even though all you 
can get are 4- or 5-in. pot plants, it will pay you to grow them, for they 
make good stock for the holidays. Later propagated stock and 
plants in 2j>^- and 3-in. pots, if well in flower, come in handy for 
made-up pans and basket work. Take three such plants, plant 
them in an 8-in. bulb pan with Adiantum or Asparagus plumosus 
around them and you have an arrangement hard to beat. Two 
sorts similar to Cincinnati which we grow today are Melior, which 
holds its flowers better than Lorraine, and Mrs. J. A. Peterson, a 
dark pink with bronze foliage. 

Gloire de Chatelaine 
As we caU the Schizanthus "The Poor Man's Orchid," so among 
Begonias we may well call Gloire de Chatelaine "The Poor Man's 
Cincinnati." To me it seems almost useless to handle any of the so- 
called semperflorens type of Begonias when you can have Gloire 
de Chatelaine, especially now that we have its deep pink sport, 
Mrs. M. A. Patten, and Pride of Newcastle, a fine red. 

"This Begonia you can have in bloom aU the year around and 
even in Carnation-house temperature you can flower it for Christ- 



BEGONIAS 277 

mas. While not to be compared with Cincinnati in appearance, 
and growing only about 10 in. in height, it makes- a pleasing pot 
plant and, of course, as a house plant, it outlasts the Cincinnati. 
It is in flower when you put the cuttings in the sand, and keeps it 
up until you throw some of the old plants out. As a bedder it has 
no equal, whether kept in the hot sun all day or in shade where a 
Geranium or Petunia would refuse to flower. 

You can root cuttings at any time of the year and please the 
customers with 4- or 5-in. pot plants during the Winter months, 
particularly those who can't afford to spend two, three or five dol- 
lars. Whoever gave it its nickname made a good job of it. I con- 
sider it a plant every retail grower should handle, and as a Begonia 
of importance for the smaUer grower I would want to place it at 
the head of aU others. 

For plants for Easter, at which time it usually is just full of 
flowers, propagate in December and if convenient carry in a 55-deg. 
house; shift the small stock and give full sunlight. If your plants 
are rather small by Easter, take three or more and make them up 
in 8-in. bulb pans. For bedding purposes root cuttings from Janu- 
ary on ; if you want extra good plants give them the final shift about 
April 15 and plunge the pots up to their rims in a hotbed, allowing 
just a little space between them. For bushy 5-in. pot plants for 
Christmas, grow on some of your late propagated bedding stock and 
keep it shifted during the Summer months; such as you have left 
over after Christmas can be divided if you wish. 

Tuberous-rooted Begonias 

These are the handsomest of all the many Summer-flowering 
Begonias, whether wanted for indoor or outdoor culture, but as 
yet they are entirely overlooked by many florists whose retaU trade 
would appreciate them. 

The man who doesn't grow at least a few plants of tuberous- 
rooted Begonias misses a whole lot. Not to grow them because they 
don't do weU outdoors as bedders is a mighty poor excuse, for they 
are first among the plants to keep your show house or store attrac- 
tive all Summer, and no other plant is of easier culture or gives 
you less trouble. Anyone can grow them when he has flowering 
bulbs to start with. 

For early flowering you plant the bulbs, or rather tubers, about 
January, in flats of sandy soil, barely covering the tops. Place 
on a propagating bench with a good bottom heat, or on the return 
pipes, and keep fairly moist — not soaking wet. As soon as growth 
appears, pot them up in 33^-in. pots and place in a 55-deg. house 
on a sunny bench. Such early started ones may flower for Easter, 
even if that day does come in April, and beautiful, attractive pans 
can be made up by using three or five plants to an 8-in. pan. For 



278 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 107. — Tuberous-rooted Begonias. Four-inch pot plants ready for bedding 
out the end pifMay. For this purpose you want short, stocky plants which, grown in 
a 50-deg. house, have room to develop and harden off. You can also use these beau- 
tiful Begonias in made-up pans for porch decorations or for the show house in Summer 

bedding purposes start about the early part of March and treat 
the sahie way, but during April and May carry the plants in an airy 
and rather cool house, to avoid a soft growth. Another batch can 
be started about April first, and the plants, after being potted up, 
brought to a hotbed where later on the sashes can be removed and 
the plants hardened off. 

The best place for the plants outdoors is a spot where they can 
get a little shade during the hot noon hours. They don't need any 
in the early morning or late afternoon, and often one can select a 
place where a certain tree will provide shade for three hours or so 
during the middle of the day. This shade or protection means more 
to them than the^soil they are planted in. They will never do their 
best in a very shady position, but if you have to fill a window box 
for a spot too shady for other flowering plants you can use them and 
get results. 

For Summer flowering indoors keep the plants inside and shift 
the fours about June first into 5- or 6-in. bulb pans. Garry in an 
airy, Ught house, with just a little shade, and they will be a mass of 
blossoms until Fall. 

Wl In colors we have white, light and deep yellow, daybreak, rose 
and deep pink, orange, red and crimson, and in types, single and 
double, crested and frilled— no end of beautiful variations. The 
tubers, of either the ones in pots or those grown outdoors, if dried 



BEGONIAS 



279 



off slowly and kept in a warm dry place over Winter in sand, can 
be used again. You can also grow them from seed (though, on a 
small scale, it is cheaper to buy flowering stock.) When large 
enough, pot the seedlings and later on plant in a bench in a cool 
house or in a frame outdoors with shade of some sort. Some of the 
plants will flower the first season, but they are better the second. 

Small-flowering Bedding Sorts 

There is still a place for the small ever-blooming bedding sorts 
of Begonias, all of which are usually grown on from seed sown in 
pans about the first part of January. The seed should never be 
covered, but gently pressed into the surface of finely sifted soil and 
sand. Cover the seed pans with a pane of whitewashed glass and 
apply water with a ScoUay sprinkler. A strong bottom heat will 
help germination. Gloire de 
Chatelaine grows from seed 
and is by far the best rose- 
pink; Luminosa is excellent 
for a fiery red; Prima Donna 
is a good soft pink; Erfordii, 
carmine pink, and Vernon, 
with its dark leaves and 
orange-carmine flowers are 
always effective when plant- 
ed in masses. • 

There are other Begonias 
which, while not as showy nor 
as valuable for Christmas 
plants, are, as a rule, good 
house plants and deserving 
of more appreciation. When 
weU grown in a 55-deg. house, 
with their showy flower clus- 
ters, they always find ad- 
mirers. 

B. incarnata Sanderii, 
with its soft pink flowers and 
fine foliage, is one of the most 
attractive of the whole faimly . 
MetaUica, with its beautiful 
metallic or lustrous bronze 
leaves, is a fine foliage plant 
and still more attractive when 
loaded with small clusters of 
creamy white flowers. Thur- 
stonii is a fine house Begonia 
with large, glossy green 







^ ]2K-?H3 





Fig. 108. — ^Begonia Gohaluna de Lu- 
cerne. Showing into what a fine specimen 
this beautiful Begonia can be developed 



280 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

leaves, reddish underneath, and large clusters of flowers of a pinkish 
coloring; on long stems it will live for years in a window. Otto 
Hacker is another fine house plant with great clusters of coral-red 
flowers and fine, shiny green foliage. CoralUna de Lucerne has spotted 
leaves and light red flowers; Saundersoni, deep green leaves and 
drooping clusters of reddish flowers. Haageana is a fine old sort with 
rosy pink flowers; President Carnot has brownish leaves and bright 
carmine flowers; rubra has red flowers and is a strong grower; 
nitata has Ught pink flowers and is very good; ricinsefoHa has 
beautifully cut fohage and pink flowers; and argentea guttata, 
bronze fohage and silver spotted and creamy white flowers. We 
could keep right on mentioning others of the many good sorts. 
They will root easily with a little bottom heat, are not particular 
as to soil, and, especially with the out-of-town florist, should prove 
a paying crop to grow. These Begonias don't need to be sold in 
a week or month; they stay good aU through the year. At one time 
they were among the most desirable of flowering pot plants and they 
will come back, not so much perhaps in the large cities where the 
average customer doesn't care much how long a plant lasts, or where 
people don't take the time to care for them, but in the country. 
Here things are different, and there are plenty who take the greatest 
pleasure in seeing a plant keep on doing well after they get it to their 
homes. It is here that these Begonias belong. 




Fig. 109.— Begonia Gloire de Lorraine. Although smaller flowering, less 
showy and more delicate than Cincinnati, this is, nevertheless, an excellent variety. 
INote the graceful habit of this particular plant which was grown without staking 



BEGONIAS, BELLIS, BERBERIS 281 

Rex Begonias 

We no longer see those fine Begonias in the florist's window 
as we used to, and I doubt whether they will ever be as popular as 
in years gone by. They are hardly suitable for present-day demands, 
but nevertheless they are really beautiful and will always find a 
place in the conservatory and the private greenhouse. They are 
propagated by laying one of the matured leaves flat on the propa- 
gating bench, making insertions an inch long at the junction of the 
ribs or veins, and holding the leaf in position down on the sand 
with small pieces of broken pot, or small pebbles. Even the small 
plants of Rex Begonia are beautiful and the larger they grow the 
more so they become. Yet to an extent and in spite of all their fine 
coloring there is something too formal about them. 

BELL FLOWER, JAPANESE 

See Platycodon 

BELLIS PERENNIS (ENGLISH DAISY) 

There are three plants — the Pansy, the Forget-me-not, and the English 
Daisy — that are favorites with almost every lover of flowers. When 
just coming into flower in Spring and properly displayed they always 

find a ready sale. 

You should always include a few Bellis when making up your 
fist of seeds to be ordered for August sowing. There isn't much to 
growing on a few hundred plants. Transplant the seedlings when 
large enough to handle, about 3 in. apart in a coldframe where they 
will start to flower the following March. The main thing is to obtain 
a good strain of seed. We used to have, many years ago, an excellent 
deep red sort which we grew on by dividing the old plants, but some- 
how it got away from us and we have never been able to obtain 
another like it. During Spring these Daisies sell best when dis- 
played twelve in a small basket; this method will save you a lot 
of time. 

BERBERIS THUNBERGII (JAPANESE BARBERRY) 

The Japanese Barberry is without doubt one of the most useful 
of all shrubs, especially when you have an order for the planting 
of grounds with limited space. Whether you consider smaU plants 
or specimens 5 ft. in height and covering as much space, they present 
their gracefuhiess, dense foliage, beautiful coloring in Fall' and loads 
of berries practically all Winter. 

There is no end of the uses to which you can put Berberis Thun- 
bergii. A group of five or more makes an ideal finish for a shrubbery 
border. At the entrance of the walk leading from the street to the 
residence a few plants are always in place. You can use them in a 
foundation planting, and as a hedge they are hard to equal, whether 



282 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

kept down to 2 ft. or where a heavy screen, 5 to 6 ft. in height, is 
wanted. The florist who does landscape work at all, and has a Uttle 
nursery or land to spare, cannot do better than have his nurseryman 
supply him each year with a few hundred plants, say 12 to 15 in. in 
height, and plant them in rows. In this way he will have each year 
a nice lot of stock to draw from and can let some of the plants grow 
into specimens, which should always be lifted with balls of earth. 
If you use them in a hedge and have the room, plant a double 
row. If along a public sidewalk keep at least 4 ft. from the lot line 
with the outside row. It is always poor policy to plant without 
figuring so as to allow the plants to spread and develop. If you do, 
you will find a few years later, just when the plants are at their best, 
that they are overhanging a walk or driveway to such an extent as 







Fig. 110. — Berbekis Thunbbrgii. Few shrubs are superior to the Japanese Bar- 
berry for hedge planting and a stiJl smaller number excel it in hardiness. \Wien you 
consider its beautiful, dense foliage, its graceful habit, the showy coloring of the 
leaves in the Fall, and the many bright berries that last all Winter, you cannot 

help but like it 



BERBERIS, BIGNONIA, BOGGONIA 283 

to be in the way, and will have to be removed. Having most likely 
been crowded in, they are usually worthless for further use. 

You can cut down a Barberry hedge almost to the ground and 
in one season obtain again a beautiful effect; or if desired, and in a 
section where Boxwood cannot be grown, you can trim a Barberry 
hedge into almost any shape you wish. However, the plants are at 
then- best only when allowed to grow their natural way. Unfor- 
tunately, we have no longer with us the tall-growing purple Barberry 
{Berberis vulgaris atropurpurea) , another grand sort whether in 
leaf or during Winter, when its graceful branches are full of berries. 
It is claimed that it is a spreader of the dreaded Wheat rust, but they 
have rust where there isn't a Barberry within a thousand miles. 
While I don't want to say that Barberry has nothing to do with 
spreading of rust, let us hope that someone will discover a different 
remedy for the disease than the extermination of the Barberries. 

For those desiring a substitute for Boxwood hedging, the new 
Box Barberry, a dwarf sport of Berberis Thunbergii, is the thing to 
use. It can be clipped to make a perfect border edging only a few 
inches high. 

BIGNONIA RADIGANS (TRUMPET FLOWER) 

Maybe you have seen a five- or six-year-old Trumpet Flower in 
full bloom, covering the trunk of a dead tree. It's quite a sight, 
but by the time such a climber gets to the top, the dead tree is usually 
ready to fall over. Yet we have call for this plant, and it is to be 
recommended where it can be given a place to grow to a-great height 
undisturbed. As a small plant, it doesn't make much of a display. 

BITTERSWEET 

See Celastrus 

BLAGK-EYED SUSAN 
See Thunbergia 

BLEEDING HEART 

See Dicentra 

BLUE BELLS 

See Mertensia 

BOGGONIA (PLUME POPPY) 

There are times when you want something growing from 
6 to 8 ft. in height for. mass effects to form the background for a 
perennial border, perhaps to take the place of a group of Hollyhocks 
that have stopped flowering. Bocconia cordata can be used to good 
advantage for this. It is showy, even when alone, but most effec- 
tive when planted in large groups. Its creamy-white flower spikes 
are often over 3 ft. in length and stand weU above the fohage. 

Like the Gaillardias, Bocconias will thrive in almost any soil 



284 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

and they can stand a dry Summer better 'than most plants in the 
border. They are also easily raised from seed sown in the green- 
house in January or outdoors during Summer. 

BOLTONIA (FALSE CHAMOMILE) 

As single plants the Boltonias are not much for show. You must 
see them growing in masses in order to appreciate them. In the 
background of a perennial bed or planted along a fence, with a fore- 
ground of smaller plants, they surely liven things up when covered 
with their Daisy-shaped flowers. You can also use them cut for 
decorative purposes, but 'before using them place the stems deep 
in water for at least twenty-four hours in a cool, dark place; other- 
wise, they soon wilt. They are propagated by division of the old 
plants after they are through flowering and either planted where 
they are to flower the foUowing year or given about 4 in. of space 
in a frame to be transferred to their permanent quarters the follow- 
ing Spring. There are two colors B. asteroides, white, and B. latis- 
quama, light lavender. 

BORONIA ELATIOR 
Boronias are among the finest of early Spring-flowering pot 
plants, but as yet they are grown on only in small quantities. The 




Fig. 111.— A BouGAiNviLLBA IN A SEVEN-INCH PoT. A Specimen like this doesn't 
require much trimming in order to become a showy Easter plant 



BORONIA, BOUGAINVILLEA 



285 



fragrant little flowers come in great masses along the stems and in 
quite a variety of shades, ranging from a pinkish to a deep reddish 
brown on the same plant. Their treatment is similar to that of the 
Ericas, and like these, they require many months of cultivation 
before even fair-sized plants result. Therefore the retail grower 
isn't much interested in their culture. You can obtain a few well- 
grown specimens during the Winter months from the specialist, and 
no trouble need be experienced in getting them into bloom in a cool 
house. They really belong to the shrubs and come to us from 
Australia, whence have come quite a number of other interesting 
florists' plants. 

BOSTON IVY 

See Ampelopsis 

BOTTLE BRUSH 

See Metrosideros 

BOUGAINVILLEA 

In order to fuUy appre- 
ciate what can be done with 
the BougainviUea, one should 
go to Central or Southern 
Florida, where the plants are 
given a chance to grow out- 
doors, their natural way, and 
are not kept pruned and 
pinched back. But even as 
pot plants, when covered 
with hundreds of light purple 
bracts such as those of 

BougainviUea glabra Sanderiana, they are most desirable around 
Easter for the florist of the Northern States. B. glabra Sanderiana 
is about the only one we see in the greenhouse, but among others, 
and even more attractive, are: Crimson Lake, of a rich glowing 
crimson color;-B. rosa catalina, a deep pink; andB. spectabilis lateritia, 
a brick red. There is a place for all of these during- the months of 
February and March, or for- a longer period. Even as small plants 
in 5- and 6-in. pots, they can be had full of bracts, but the growing 
on, whfle not a difiicult matter, should be left to the specialist. 

Purchase ready grown plants in Winter and hold them in a house 
of a Uttle over 50 deg. What you don't sell, shift after Easter and grow 
on in a cool house until Summer; then plunge the pots outdoors 
and bring them back into a 50-deg. house by Fall. 



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Fig. 112. ^BOUGAINVILLEA BASKET. BoU- 

gainvilleas are especially fine for basket 
work; some of the long shoots can often be 
trained around the handle. White Hya- 
cinths combine with them nicely 



286 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

BOUVARDIA 

Every retail grower should have at least a few plants of Bouvardia 
Humboldtii to flower during November and December. Their beautiful 
waxy-white, orange-blossom-scented flowers are quite different from 
anything else to be had at that time, and the plants require but little 
care in order to do well. 

But few men specialize today in Bouvardias; the time of the 
average grower is taken up with other, perhaps more profitable, 
things. Those who can produce fine Roses, 'Mums and Carnations 
during late Fall and early Winter find them better paying crops 
than a bench or house of Bouvardias, yet we see the flowers used as 
of old in corsages. A few are still grown in spite of the general run 
of the usual assortment found in the larger establishments. I don't 
look forward to seeing Bouvardias ever come back, any more than 
Gamelias, but the retail grower will make no mistake in planting 
some for his own use. 

Bouvardia Humboldtii, the most showy of all, will thrive and 
do well in a Carnation house temperature, and you can make the 
plants pay on a small scale. You can use the flowers for the wedding 
bouquet, the corsage, as cut material and in design work. There is 
nothing that can equal a spray of Ophelia or Columbia Roses and 
white Bouvardia, or a centerpiece of the same. A few plants in 
flower will always be a great attraction to visitors to the greenhouses, 
and even one plant in bloom will fill a 100-ft. house with its sweet 
fragrance. 

If you desire a little more of an assortment than what every- 
body has to offer, by all means plant a few Bouvardias. 

Cultural Notes 

Bouvardia Humboldtii is grown from cuttings of the old plants, 
which, after having been overwintered underneath a dry bench 
up to the end of January, are cut back a little and placed in a 52-deg. 
house. The softwood will easily root, but must have a good bottom 
heat. After the cuttings are rooted, pot up, keep shifted and 
plant them out on a bench or solid bed by the end of May; or you 
can grow them on in pots under glass. Still another way is to plant 
them outdoors, keep them pinched back up to the end of August, 
and bench them afterward. The more soil you can bring in clinging 
to the roots, the better. Shade the plants well for a few days after 
housing, and provide a stake for each; they wiU start to flower in 
September, but the best flowers on the longest stems are not cut 
until November. Nevertheless, pinch after August or the plants 
are apt to become too full of small shoots and develop no buds. 

You win find that, lifted with a ball of soil and placed 
under a bench, a cut-down plant will not suffer in the least if water 



BOUVARDIA, BUDDLEIA 



287 




Fig. 113. BOUVABDIA HUMBOLDTII. TMs, 

grandest of all Bouvardias, is easily grown 
in a Carnation house temperature where it 
flowers from early Fall up to the middle of 
December. There is nothing more suitable 
for a wedding bouquet, corsage spray or 
wreath. The flowers are beautiful and 
have a delightful Orange-blossom fragrance 



is withheld entirely. Shake 
the plants out by the end of 
January, cut them back and 
pot them up into 5s or 6s. 
These plants will easily be at 
their best the second year, 
and will beat any young 
stock for flowering. 

Cultural Notes on Other 
Sorts 

Among the hybrids and 
the sorts we found forty years 
ago in almost every green- 
house we have such favorites 
as Hogarth, brilliant scarlet ; 
Maiden's Blush, hght rose, 
and Alfred Neuner, double 
white or creamy pink. All 
these are smaller flowering 
than B. Humboldtii and not 
sweet scented, yet they are valuable cut flowers. The easiest 
way to propagate them is to cut the roots into l-in.-long pieces about 
February, when, usually, they are through flowering and scatter 
them over a layer of sandy soU, either in flats, bulb pans or on the 
propagating bench, with a good bottom heat; if you have no better 
place, put the flats on the return hot water pipes. The cut pieces 
of roots, of course, have to be covered with a thin layer of sand or 
sandy soil and kept moist. Pot up the young plants later and treat 
practically the same as those of B. Humboldtii and most other 
flowers; plant them out and bench them by the end of August. 
Whfle they can get along in a house of 50 deg.,you will get better 
results in one of 55 deg. 

For those interested, it might be said that any of these Bou- 
vardias can be grown into attractive flowering pot plants. If grown 
on in pots they should be carried outdoors during the Summer 
months, the pots plunged up to their rims and the plants kept 
pinched back. Don't shift after September, and if you keep them 
in a 55-deg. house, after the first crop is off, they will flower again 
during February. 

BUDDLEIA ASIATICA 

Buddleia asiatica is a plant every florist should grow. It can 
get along in a 48- or 50-deg. house; it grows in any soil; and, while not 
a show flower, in its delightfully sweet fragrance it reminds you of 
your favorite perfume. "A mixture of Freesia, LUy of the Valley and 



288 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 114.— BuDDLEiA VARIABILIS. This is 
also known as Summer Lilac and Butterfly 
Bush. Even though not hardy everywhere, 
it should be tried in every garden. A thrifty 
3-in. pot plant bedded out in May will 
bloom all Summer and furnish most useful 
cut flowers 



Mignonette," one of our lady 
patrons calls it. In habit the 
flower spikes remind one of the 
Buddleias that flower during 
the Summer months, but they 
are not so large. You use 
them as you would Gypsop- 
hila or Stevia, along with 
other flowers ; there is nothing 
finer for corsage bouquets. 

Buddleia blooms about the 
end of December and through 
the month of January. Any- 
body can grow it. . The old 
cut-down plants will break 
during March in a 50-deg. 
house and the cuttings will root 
as freely as Geraniums. Grow 
the plants on in pots during 
the Summer, shifting them 
from time to time so you have 
them in 6- or 7-in. pots by 
October, and keep them 
pinched up to that time in 
order to obtain bushy speci- 



mens. You can flower them in the pots or by September take the 
4-in. pot plants and bench them in a Carnation house. Even with 
plenty of Stevia on the place there is room for this little flower, 
particularly as it comes into bloom around New Year's Day. 

Buddleia variabilis 
The hardy Buddleias, while not hardy everywhere, should 
nevertheless be planted far more extensively and be handled not 
only by the nurseryman, but also by the florist. Best known by 
the name of Butterfly Bush on account of the sweet-scented, bright- 
colored flowers, they are also called Summer Lilacs partly owing, 
again, to the fragrance of the lilac-colored flowers borne on graceful 
spikes. 

If, in your locality they are not hardy, it is an easy matter to 
overwinter the plants in a frame, or root softwooded cuttings during 
early Fall and grow them on in pots over Winter. The plants out of 
23^- or 33^-in. pots bedded out in May wiU start to bloom in July 
and keep it up. They make fine cut flowers and are used by the best 
florists in design work and corsages. The plants are most attractive 
when three or more are planted in a clump. 

BUTTERCUP. See Ranunculus 



BUXUS 



BUXUS SEMPERVIRENS (BOXWOOD) 

The day is bound to come when Boxwood, such as we were in the habit 
of importing from Europe, will be grown in this country. By going far 
enough South or West this can be done, and the finished plants delivered 
to the florist in the East, North and Middle West at prices that will 
allow him a fair margin of profit. 

Maybe it was because of the cheapness of imported Boxwood 
that we didn't appreciate it in years gone by, or take proper care of 
the plants. While some fine 
specimens are being grown here 
in the East and West, the aver- 
age florist, especially the smaller 
retail grower in the central part 
of the United States, sees but 
little of them. Their high cost 
makes it difficult for him to 
handle them, nor is there any 
possibility of relief in the near 
future. At present it costs more 
than ever to produce a 3-ft. or 
4-ft. plant in a location where 
the plants cannot be grown and 
handled outdoors all the year 
'round. 

Boxwoods in pyramid or 
globe shape in tubs at either 
side of the entrance to a resi- 
dence, along the top of a ter- 
race, along a walk, in front of 
public buildings and hotels, and 
last, but more important than 
all else, in making your own 
entrance attractive, are almost 
indispensable and deserve a 
better fate than to be abused 
when stored away over Winter. 
While many beautiful plants 
suffer for want of a little water 
during Summer, there are just 
as many or more ruined through 
careless handling during the 
Winter months while in the 
hands of the florist. 

In order to overwinter Box- 
woods, you want some kind of 
shaded spot where you can 



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Fig 115.— Boxwood in Tub. The pyra- 
midal Boxwoods are the most popular, 
but because they are known to stand a lot 
of abuse, they are often neglected. A 
specimen that may have taken years to 
develop can be ruined in one short bummer 



290 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

keep the temperature just above freezing and see to it that the 
soil around the roots is always kept moist. Nothing will finish 
them quicker than a hot, dry place and dry soil about their roots. 
In March or early April the plants should either have a shift 
or get a good top dressing of rotted manure. If, for want of 
a better place, you have them in a cool greenhouse, they may 
start to grow about that time. If kept in a crowded condition 
they wiU suffer, whereas stock you received from your customer 
the previous Fall, perhaps not in the very best shape, if given 
sufficient space when the new growth starts, will be much improved 
in appearance by the time you return the plants. 

Cut Boxwood 

From November on to early Spring the florist uses cut branches 
of Boxwood as green and there is nothing better for wreaths and 
other design work. The dark green, glossy leaves and excellent 
keeping qualities make it so. Every florist with proper facihties 
should put in a good supply in early Winter and always have some on 
hand. There is no better place to store it than in a deep coldframe 
where you can heel the stems into the soil to a depth of from 4 to 6 in. 




Fig. 116.— Calceolama. The man who can grow a good Calceolaria has always 

been considered a good gardener, for while its culture is no secret, it requires 

patience, careful handling and constant attention— which three qualities, for 

that matter, go far toward attaining success with any plant 



CALADIUM, CALCEOLARIA 291 

CACTUS, CHRISTMAS 

See Epiphyllum 

CALADIUM ESCULENTUM (ELEPHANT'S EAR) 

Caladiums are mainly used for bedding where a sub-tropical 
efFect is wanted, or as border material for large Canna beds. The 
richer the soil and the warmer the Summer and the more water 
you can give them, the larger the leaves will be. Outside of that 
we have but little call for them. 

Start new tubers the same as you would Cannas, about early 
March. They are too cheap for you to try to keep them over. The 
fancy-leaved sorts are among the finest decorative foliage plants 
for the Summer months and should be carried by every florist 
who realizes the necessity of keeping up an attractive looking store 
or show house during the Summer. Start the tubers with good 
bottom heat; as soon as they show growth pot them up into 33^s 
in a mellow, sandy soil, and keep in a 60-deg. house. If you can still 
give them a little bottom heat, so much the better. 

When these plants are well established, you can plant four or 
five in a 7- or 8-in. bulb pan. These pans, during Summer, make a 
better showing than single plants would. Or you can use 33^- or 
4-in. stock for the filling of window boxes in sheltered locations, a 
Uttle protected from the sun. You can make a pleasing arrangement 
by planting them with tuberous-rooted Begonias and they can also 
be used for bedding, doing finely where neither heavy winds nor 
too much sun can get at them. But in order to see them at their 
best you want to grow them under glass with just a little shade, 
where you can obtain the beautifully colored and veined leaves, 
such as no other plant possesses. 

You can dry the plants off toward Fall and keep the tubers in 
the pots in a dry place to be started into growth again the following 
February. 

CALCEOLARIA 

We keep on talking about new things and keep our eyes open for 
anything offered as a novelty in order to grow a greater assortment; 
yet, at tiie same time, we don't take trouble to look up the old ones, 
some of which are so old and so little seen that if they were shown the 
public would consider them novelties. The Calceolarias,' when well 
grown, are among this class, and to get them that way isn't hard. They 
are as fine flowering pot plants as you can wish for and quite different 
from anything else; even if you never sell a plant, they will repay 
you by making your greenhouses look attractive. 

If I had to pick out just a few plants that the average retail 
grower should grow, I would certainly have the Calceolarias arnong 
them, and I would want to help make them as popular as possible, 
for they are among the plants which deserve it. A display of them 



292 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 117. — Calendulas in Variety. The 
variety most used by florists for indoor cul- 
ture is "Orange King" or "Orange Prince." 
It is an ideal coldhouse crop and a money 
maker for the retail florist who doesn't 
have to send his flowers to the wholesale 
market in competition with others 



in bloom with their endless 
different shadings and their 
odd flower markings will 
attract more attention than 
almost anything else you have 
in the show house. It is, 
therefore, bound to help sell 
other things. 

Calceolarias are easily 
grown from seed, which should 
be sown during July. The 
cooler and more airy the house 
the seedUngs are in, the better; 
let them have a Uttle shade, 
too. You can grow them 
nicely on the same bench with 
your Primulas and Cinerarias 
while small. During Summer 
they make but little headway, 
but with cool nights they 
soon make up. Let them have 
a light, porous soil, especially 
when small, and when you 
shift them into 4s (which is 
usually about the end of 
November) loam with one-fifth 
well-rotted cow manure makes 



a good mixture. Keep them in a cool house, say 45 deg. over 
Winter and keep them shifted, for it is after October that they 
make their main growth. 

What causes more failures, perhaps, than anything else, is letting 
green fly get a foothold among the leaves and at the center of the 
plants. This pest is so fond of Calceolarias that if there are any 
plants in the house, they surely will be full of green fly before any 
other plant shows even a sign of them. This means that you have 
to be continuously on the lookout; a good practice is to not 
only spray and fumigate regularly, but also place some tobacco 
stems between the little pots or around the flats or below them. 
If you keep them clean, cool and use a little care in watering, you 
should be able to grow them in almost any kind of house. 

CALENDULAS 

These plants well deserve to be called money makers for the florist. 

A good many dollars have found their way into the pockets of 

the florist since he started to grow Calendulas under glass and display 

them in Midwinter at a time when their bright, orange-colored flowers 



CALENDULA 293 

three and four times the size of outdoor stock, contrast happily 
with the usual white, pink, and few red flowers available. Here, 
again, we have an ideal coldhouse crop which always appeals to 
many. Calendulas, from Thanksgiving on — which usuaUy means 
the beginning of the end of the Chrysanthemum season — find a 
ready sale with the retailer and keep it up aU Winter and Spring. 
They can even be made to pay as early started plants in a frame 
which wiU come into flower during May and June, and up to the 
time they begin to flower in your customer's own garden. While 
consideral^e bench space is today devoted to ' their culture by 
specialists or wholesale growers, the man who grows them and retails 
the flowers makes the most out of them. 

For An Extra Early Crop 

Calendulas can be grown equaUy weU on a bench or solid 
bed, but delight especially in a 45-deg. house, with their roots in a 
deep, cool soil. When on benches you want to keep heating pipes 
away from the bottom. For November flowering, seed should be 
sown not later than the first of August. If you make use of soUd 
beds, sow the seed in rows about 1 ft. apart and later on thin the 
plants to about 6 in. in the rows. If they are to be benched sow out- 
doors or in flats and transplant the seedlings into 2j/^-in. pots to 
be benched not later than September fifth, about 1 ft. apart. They 
require a rich, weU-drained soil, and for best results should never 
be stunted. 

The first buds usually come on short stems and rather than 
use them (which, in order to obtain a 10-in. stem, would mean to 
sacrifice two or three more buds), pinch out the first and second 
buds before they open. Whether you always have use for the flowers 
or not, they shouldn't be allowed to go to seed. Keep the plants 
clean, the soil cultivated, and, when you once begin to cut large, 
long-stemmed flowers, a dose or two of liquid cow manure will do the 
plants good. Green and white fly often attack, especiaUy the Mid- 
winter flowering plants, but regular spraying will keep them down. 
There is hardly ever occasion to stake the plants, unless you have 
an extra fine lot, and grown at 45 deg. the plants hardly ever become 
too tall. But there are growers who claim they pay better, have 
longer stems and larger flowers when grown in extra rich, heavy soil, 
and with a night temperature of 50 deg. 

To Follow Chrysanthemums 
Calendulas to follow Chrysanthemums should be sown about 
September tenth, which will give you heavy 2j^-in. pot plants 
ready to be planted out by the middle of November. The sofl in 
the Chrysanthemum benches or beds is just what they want, even 
if heavily manured. Plants benched about November fifteenth 
should, if not kept too warm, keep in good shape all Winter. 



294 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



You can sow and plant Calendulas all Winter, and a nice batch 
of 23/^-in. stock on hand often comes in handy when some other 
crops have failed. After January, and as we approach Spring, a 
temperature of 50 deg. won't hurt in the least. For a good crop 
during May, sow out about the end of February and plant in sohd 
beds in deeply cultivated, heavily manured soil, and you will cut 
the largest flowers of the whole season. 

For Outdoor Flowering 

You will hardly find it profitable to have Calendulas in flower 
during the Midsummer months, but even in locahties where the 
ground of an old Calendula bed is full of small plants by May, it 
usually pays the florist to have a few rows in his hotbed devoted to 
plants to be sold along with his other annuals. If a crop of flowers is 
wanted by the end of September and during October, a time when 
the plants which have been flowering all Summer are played out, sow 
seed in rows in the open about July fifteenth, or even a little later. 

Varieties 

There are many sorts, but usually the florist selects Orange 
Prince as the most desirable. While culture has everything to do 
with the size of the flowers and stems one obtains, there are offered 
today several selected strains of Orange Prince, the seed of which 

is saved from the best flowers 
from selected stock grown 
under glass, which really 
should prove superior to ordi- 
nary stock, especially for in- 
door culture. 

CALLAS 

It is a mighty fine thing to be 
able to cut a few Calla blooms 
each week during the Winter 
and early Spring months. The 
retail grower may not always 
find it profitable to grow the so- 
called Easter LiUes, but if he 
has a house of 55 deg., CaUas 
can always be made to bring 
good returns. 
Wherever a retail grower 
is located there is call for cut 
Callas. For funeral sprays they 
always have been, and no 
doubt always wiU be used. 
Even if a man grows a hun- 




Fig. 118.— Callas. For floral designs and 
sprays the Calla holds first place with many. 
During the Winter months blooms cut and 
placed in a cooler will keep in perfect 
condition for two weeks or more 



CALLAS, GALLIOPSIS 295 

dred plants and can cut just a handful of flowers each week they 
form a profitable crop. Few other flowers will last longer than 
Callas if kept in a cool place, so hardly ever does one go to waste; 
all are made use of for something. 

You can plant the tubers in August in solid beds, in benches, 
or in pots and get good results. For the retail grower with just a 
few plants, I should recommend pot culture, for the reason that, as 
a rule, one can put the pot plants in any convenient place, and, when 
advisable, move them to some other place; this, of course, is not 
possible when they are planted out. In pots they bloom as freely, 
if not more freely than when handled any other way, but of course 
they are a httle more work. 

Plant the tubers in August in as smaU pots as you can conven- 
iently get them in; place them in a frame or on a bench in a cool 
house, and in October shift the started plants into 6-in., or, if extra 
large, 7-in. pots, then carry them along in a 55-deg. house. They 
want sunlight, but will get along even in a partly shaded spot. Have 
good drainage in the pots and water every day. In December, and 
from then on, apply a weak dose of liquid cow manure twice a 
month. The plants wiU flower up to late Spring, when they should 
be slowly dried off, and finaUy laid under a bench to rest. Later 
clean up the tubers and start them into growth again by August. 

Among the best for cut flowers, although not quite as large as 
some others, is the Godfrey sort. This is mostly grown right through 
the year, and in many establishments, it has replaced entirely the 
old variety, Calla j^thiopica. 

The Yellow Galla 

Calla EllioUiana, with its deep golden yeUow flowers, is a most 
showy variety and well worthy of a place in the retail grower's 
establishment. You wouldn't want to grow it in as large numbers 
as the white varieties, which is not to say that the flowers wouldn't 
seU, but rather that it is especially valuable as a pot plant during 
the Spring months. The yeUow flowers and the whitish-spotted 
fohage go weU together, making a good Easter plant. 

For March and April flowering,, you needn't start the plants 
until the end of October. Grow them on in a rather cool house, 
aUowing plenty of space between them so as to obtain short, stocky 
growth. To have a few wiU help add variety to your assortment, if 
nothing more, and even that is worth something. 

GALLIOPSIS 

This is a showy annual— you might caU it a miniature Goreopsis 

—with yeUow flowers and, usually, dark centers. Sown outdoors, it 

quickly grows into bushes 2 ft. to 3 ft. high, soon covered with 

hundreds of little single flowers on graceful stems, fine for cutting. 



296 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



If you want it for Fall, sow outdoors about the middle of July and 
it will be in full flower by the end of September, a time when you 
have use for yellow and brown flowers. It wouldn't pay the retail 
grower to grow this little plant for flowers for the wholesale market, 
but he should sow some for his own requirements. 

CAMBRIDGE SCARLET 

See Monarda 

CAMPANULA MEDIUM (CANTERBURY BELLS) 
You can grow and flower Canterbury Bells without a greenhouse, but 
they can be grown better in one, and made to bring good returns for 

every retail grower. 

Campanulas, whether the 
single Canterbury Bells or C. 
medium calycanthema (the 
Cup-and-Saucer variety) have 
been favorites for ever so many 
years. They are among the 
most showy of biennials for 
the hardy border during June, 
and when gently forced under 
glass make grand pot plants. 
Or they can be used as cut 
flowers. They are being grown 
by quite a few florists, but 
those who really could make 
them pay good returns — that 
is, retail growers everywhere 
— pay but httle attention 
to them. 

Pot Culture for Early 
Forcing 

Sow seed about March in 
the greenhouse. Fresh seed 
will germinate as freely as that 
of Asters. Transplant the seed- 
lings into flats and later on pot 
up into 2s. Keep under glass 
all Summer if you want to, or 
bring them into a frame in 
Fig. 119.— CAMPANra,A MEDIUM. Although May. Keep them shifted so 
It IS as old as the hiUs, the retail grower . i Ti. • „ „ • 

doesn't pay enough attention to this desir- as to have them in 6- or 7-in. 
able biennial. The plants are not only pots by October, and bring 
showy for the JDorder but also real money t^ese into a cool house until 
makers when slowly forced imder glass for ^ „ , . , , 

early Spring flowering January, after which they can 




CAMPANULA, GANNAS 297 

be brought into a 50-deg. house. Keep them in the same pots and 
they will start to flower early in April. 

Field Culture for Later Flowering 

Sow in March, carry in small pots and plant in the field in May. 
Lift in October and heel the plants into a coldframe until the middle 
of February, then pot up and let the plants come along slowly in a 
45- or 48-deg. house. Don't make any attempt to force them in a 
high temperature; they wiU not stand it. They can also be planted 
out on a bench or solid bed where they will flower by early May. 

For Outdoor Flowering 

Sow any time from March to May; give field culture during 
Summer; lift plants in FeJI, overwinter in a frame, and plant out 
where they are to flower during April. You will always find it ad- 
visable to overwinter at least a part of your stock in frames, as 
during a hard Winter they are liable to freeze if left out in the open, 
even when covered. 

I, 
Other Desirable Campanulas 

Among the many Campanulas, C. carpatica, in different shades of 
blue and white, makes a fine, hardy border plant of dwarf habit. 
It is covered with small, bell-shaped flowers and should be planted 
near the edge. C. persicifolia is taUer growing and makes a good 
cut flower; so does C. pyramidalis, and all of these are easily grown 
from seed. If this is sown outdoors and the seedfings are once trans- 
planted the plants will flower the foUowing year. 

CANNAS 

The florist who says "We don't do much in Cannas, our trade calls 
more for other plants for bedding," would be far more correct if he 
blamed this condition on the fact that although Cannas are becoming 
more important as bedders each year, he has but little call for them, 
because by not handling them and pushing their sale he manages to 
have his patrons and himself get along without them. 

In few other bedding plants have greater improvements been 
made in the past thirty-five years than in the Cannas. After Mme. 
Crozy came out Cannas ceased to be just plants to be used for sub- 
tropical planting or massing around a Castor Oil Bean plant with 
Dusty MiUer as a fitting border. Each sort is now planted in a 
bed or border by itself according to the particular color effect wanted, 
and we obtain a mass of blossoms from July until Fall. While Can- 
nas are most attractive and make the best showing when large beds 
can be used, even in the smaU home ground they can and should 
be used. Such grand varieties as King Humbert, San Diego, Mrs. 
F. Conard, or The President are showy even when planted singly or 



298 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 120. — Pot Cannas. If you want to 

sell Cannas for bedding get a few plants 

of each variety in flower by May 10, by 

starting eyes in January 



with three plants in a clump. 
Nor need they be planted in 
beds by themselves if lack of 
space prevents. They can be 
used to advantage in the 
perennial border, where if 
planted in clumps, they take 
the place of some perennials 
or biennials that finish bloom- 
ing by early July; or they can 
be made to brighten up the 
shrubbery border if no other 
place can be found. 

We have always found 
that starting a few plants 
early, say about the middle of 
January, so as to have speci- 
mens in flower in 5-in. pots by 
the middle of May, results in 
the purchase of Cannas by 
many of our customers who 
had no such intention when 
they entered the place. If you 
make an effort to have people 
buy Cannas, you will not only 



do more business, but also please your customers with the re- 
sults they obtain; for. while Cannas, in order to do their best, 
should be encouraged with a well-prepared bed and plenty of 
water during the Summer months, even where they don't get the 
best of care they still make a good showing. 

Every retail grower with a little space outdoors should arrange 
for a good display of Cannas in order to advertise them. This is 
always a good investment, not only as an advertisement, but because 
from each single 33^-in. plant grown in good soil and properly at- 
tended to, he will obtain from eight to twelve more for use the 
following year. 

Cultural Notes 

If you sell your customer Cannas during the bedding season it 
is always well to call attention to the fact that they will do best in a 
deeply dug-over bed where the soil contains a liberal amount of 
manure. If one can add to a bed say 6 or 7 ft. in diameter about 
twenty-five pounds of bonemeal, so much the better. Don't have 
the bed crowned up in the center. A flat bed, as long as there is 
plenty of drainage below, is better, for the plants wiU get more 
benefit from the rains or the water you apply during the Summer 
months; and water they must have. 



CANNA 



299 



Plants such as you have left over at the end of the bedding 
season can be planted out in the field. If wanted for the increase 
you can get out of them in the way of eyes for propagating for 
another year, keep them cut down; that is to say, as soon as a flower- 
spike forms, instead of letting it come into bud and bloom, cut it 
off, say 8 or 10 in. from the ground. This will make the plants 
keep on sending up new. shoots which in turn can be cut. It is well 
not to practice this after September first, as you don't want too 
many small shoots, only 5 or 6 in. above the ground, by the time you 
lift the plants. The first heavy frost will finish the plants, but if 
they are labeled and a spell of good weather sets in, as usually does 
afterward, let them remain in the soil for several weeks; they will 
make better roots, or rather rhizomes, as they are called, which 
contain the eyes. 

Storing Gannas 

The reason your customer usually loses his Gannas stored away 
over Winter is that the plants are lifted, every bit of soil is shaken 
from the rhizomes, and these are thrown in a box and most fikely 
placed somewhere near the furnace. The right way is to lift the 
plants (after they have been cut down to within 6 in. of the ground) 
with as much soil clinging to the roots as possible, and store them 
away in a dry, cool place, with just enough moisture in the soil to 
keep them plump. The florist can store his stock under a Carnation 
bench, setting them on boards close together. The boards are put 




Fig. 121.— Bed op Gaiwa, vabiety Surprise. Gannas never show to best advantage 

in a three-foot bed; indeed, the larger the bed or border, the more effective the 

display. Surprise is one of the many good varieties now available 



300 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

there to prevent the roots from getting busy in the moist soil below 
and starting a top growth. Look after your Gannas and once in 
awhile examine them. They don't want any drip from above nor 
heating pipes so near as to dry them up. 

Starting Cannas into Gbowth 

The man who propagates many thousands of Cannas makes use 
of the propagating bench with about 70 deg. of bottom heat. He 
uses every live eye and but Uttle of the rhizome or stem so as to get 
as many in the bench as possible. The retail grower, however, finds 
it best and most convenient to start his eyes in ordinary flats, cover- 
ing the bottom with about a l-in.-thick layer of coarse soil and fol- 
lowing this with a thin layer of sand on which the eyes are placed, 
pointing upward, each eye with a 2- or 3-in.-long piece of rhizome. 
More sand is placed over the eyes — ^just enough to cover them— 
or even soil will do; the flats then receive a good soaking and are 
placed on the return hot water pipes. The first batch of eyes, in- 
tended for bedding stock, is usuaUy started about the latter part of 
February, but in order to have every eye make good, you must 
have at least a little bottom heat. Without this, they are very 
likely to rot. With the second and later lots bottom heat isn't so 
important, yet it is best to use it. When the young growth develops 
and is about 3 in. in length, remove the flats to a fight bench and 
two or three weeks later pot the plants up singly in 33^-in. pots 
where they can remain until bedded out. Those started first can 
be grown on in larger pots, but you never want anything from more 
than a 4-in. pot for bedding stock. When you take the small plants 
out of the flats you will always find some just starting into growth, 
and others hardly large enough to be potted; place the latter back 
in the flats, or rather use them to make up new flats and put these 
back on the pipes for awhile. 

Varieties 

Here, as with other plants, the only way to get good results is 
to invest a few dollars each year in the new introductions. Some of 
the finest sorts we grow today are from American breeders, and new 
ones are coming right along. Mrs. Alfred F. Conard and Hungary 
are especially in demand on account of their beautiful pink color, 
and both are ideal bedders. Maybe you have never tried them as 
cut flowers, yet it can be done. There are times in the Fall, after 
the Gladiolus season is about over, when you are in want of long- 
stemmed pink flowers. Cut a Conard with two or three flowers, 
and you cannot beat it for decorating. King Humbert, which re- 
placed that old standby Egandale, is still the most showy of all for 
large bedding, but what we could use today would be a large yellow 
with King Humbert bronze foliage. The President is one of the 



GANNAS, CARNATIONS 301 

finest green-leaved sorts, with red flowers, and San Diego is an ex- 
cellent yellow; but you will have to keep on trying the newcomers 
in order to keep uptodate and in touch with the best. Good sorts 
come and go and others take their place. It is only once in awhile 
that a King Humbert happens. 

I well remember thirty years ago we bought twelve Ganna 
plants of a recent introduction. It was called Star of '91, a dwarf 
red, and never was anything more closely watched for the first buds 
to open. We couldn't imagine anything grander at the time, but 
its Ught soon grew dim as other brighter stars appeared, and finally 
went out. So it has been going ever since that time, and thirty 
years hence others will recall "has-beens" which today seem to us 
almost perfection itself. 

GANDYTUFT 

See Iberis 

GARNATIONS 

It is just about forty-five years ago that my grandfather at 
Frankfort-on-the-Main, Germany, showed me for the first time how 
to prepare a Garnation cutting to be put into cocoanut fiber mixed 
with washed sand, and impressed on me the fact that Garnations 
formed one of the florist's main flowers, even if he himself never 
could actuaUy make any money out of them. 

I have been in touch with Garnations ever since, have watched 
their development, tried my hand at bringing out new sorts, met 
with a lot of disappointments, and then forgot all about them when 
awarded a certificate of merit or able to bring home a few blue rib- 
bons from the shows. I have spent many happy hours in the pot- 
ting shed with old-timers, going over some of the sorts we could call 
to mind, that had made their entry to the accompaniment of a lot 
of noise from the introducer and all kinds of promises. We would 
recollect all the many remarkable qualities they were to possess, how 
the new star would in a short time outshine aU others and bring us 
wealth, how they occupied the "footlights" for awhile — and then 
disappeared into everlasting darkness without leaving even a trace. 

Here and there was an exception. It took Enchantress to re- 
place Daybreak, and Enchantress has outlasted any other sort; 
and those that are considered best of aU that are with us today are 
still on trial. To be sure, we are going forward, making headway. 
Look at a vase of weU grown Laddie, Maine Sunshine, White De- 
hght. Democracy, Denver, or Eureka, and then recaU to mind 
Portia, Garfield, Tidal Wave, Hinze's White, or Grace Wilder. 
But what Wm. Scott predicted to me in Buffalo, twenty years ago, 
that the day would come when every Garnation grower would raise 
and grow his own seedlings, has not come true. As with the Rose and 



302 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

the Chrysanthemum, so with the Carnation; the bringing out of new 
sorts is in the hands of a few speciahsts and the florist and Carnation 
grower look to them to do it. All other kinds of predictions came 
true, especially John Thorpe's as to the size of the flower; but no 
one, not even the most optimistic dreamer, dared to prophesy that 
the day would come when it would be possible to realize, around 
Christmas, $7.50 retail for one dozen red Carnations. Yet to the 
grower this is more important than anything else. 

Whether you are among those who actually make money from 
Carnations, or whether you grow them and yet cannot say that 
there is much money for you in the returns from your plants, never- 
theless, if you are a florist retailing your stock and depending on a 
local trade, you should by all means keep on growing them. You 
may use several hundred Carnations daily, but if you can cut some- 
even only twenty-five — of them from your own plants, the very 
fact that you have these few plants growing in your own estabUsh- 




Fig. 122.— A Vase of Cabnation Enchantress. Peter Fisher's Enchantress has 
proved one ot the most remarkable Carnations brought out in our time. For over 
twenty years — durmg which more new varieties have been introduced than ever 
fietore— It has remamed the"bread and butter" sort for thousands of retail growers 



CARNATIONS 303 

ment, so that your patrons can see them while in your houses, 
means a whole lot; it is a mighty good ad. Then there are bound to 
be times when the fact that you can cut a few dozen of your own 
flowers in an emergency will mean a lot to you. 

A Carnation is not like an Ophelia Rose which has to be cut 
just at the right moment; it can stay a day or two — some varieties 
even longer if need be — and still be in good condition. The smaller 
retail grower with just one bench can easily arrange to keep a good- 
looking show of flowers on it practically from Fall to Spring. Again, 
Carnations will thrive and do well in a house of 50 deg., which sounds 
good to those who have to buy coal when the thermometer keeps 
going down and down. Resides all this, one should take into Con- 
sideration that Carnations form a crop to follow bedding stock and 
can be handled so as to make room again when your Geraniums get 
their final shift in April. 

The man who is independent of the wholesale market, and 
retails his stock and arranges matters so as to cut Carnations 
from September until April, cannot help but make them pay, even 
if his flowers are not of the highest quality, or even if he doesn't 
get the number of blooms per plant that some experts claim they 
obtain. With funeral and other design work, and orders not calling 
for any particular flower, if you happen to have an extra heavy crop 
of flowers on your plants you can always use them to advantage. 
On the other hand, if you have good success and your flowers are 
good, you will have no trouble in disposing, at paying prices, of all 
the surplus bjooms you may have at any time. 

Carnations have not, in any way whatever, lost their popularity 
as some try to make us believe, nor have they ever brought higher 
prices. The thing is to grow good ones if you want to compete with 
others, and if you grow for your own retail trade make proper use 
of them and treat the plants half-way decently. Even if for some 
reason or other you cannot make the plants produce enough flowers 
to actuaUy pay for the space they take up, I should stiU suggest 
growing a few, if for no other purpose than that of having your 
patrons know that you are growing at least a part of your require- 
ments. 

About Varieties 

If you are at all interested in Carnations you should join the 
American Carnation Society. Attend its conventions whenever 
possible and thereby keep in touch with whatever advance is being 
made. Stick to the standard varieties, such as you know will do 
weU with you, but the minute you see or hear of a new sort, try it; 
the price of the young stock will never be so high that you cannot 
afford to invest in at least a few plants and give them a fair trial. 



304 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

The day is over when a firm of good repute will send out a 
Carnation knowing it is worthless. Frequently a new sort holds up 
for three or more years and then gives out, but if you wait until 
dead sure that it is a really good thing, it is too late to make money 
on it, for by that time everybody has it. 

There is no such thing as the three or six best sorts for the flo- 
rist to grow. Soil and chmatic conditions, the houses they are grown 
in, and the way they are handled make a certain sort a success in 
one locaHty and a failure in another. The man who wants to go 
into growing Carnations and doesn't know what sorts to plant can- 
not do better than find out what is being successfully grown by others 
in his neighborhood, or what growers make use of within a radius of 
a hundred miles or so if there are none in his immediate vicinity. 
But never omit to invest each year in at least a few new ones; don't 
feel sore because the sorts you tried last year turned out badly; 
forget about them and keep on trying out new ones. It is the only 
way. 

The Necessity of Early Housing 

I have yet to find a live retail grower who isn't crowded for 
room eight months out of the year. About the only time he sees 
the bottom of the benches is right after the bedding stock leaves 
the house, and if that runs into July, somebody has to get busy 
repairing the benches, cleaning them, and refilling them with soil, for 
the Carnations from the field are ready for housing by the tenth to 
the fifteenth of that month. If they are housed early it means that 
the plants become re-estabUshed in a few weeks and during the 
middle of September start to flower on fair-sized stems. 

Early housing is most important for the florist who has to throw 
his plants out in early April in order to make use of the bench space 
for Spring stock, for he has to get the most out of his plants up to 
that time. Such as have been benched during July or in early 
August will give you fine flowers and stems during N.ovemher and 
December, which cannot be said of such as were lifted and housed 
the end of September or during the month of October. 

Stock Ufted from the field in July usually consists of plants with 
six or eight short, stocky shoots which when benched will, in the 
shortest possible time, become established and go ahead. Plants by 
the middle of October usually are of enormous size, are hard-wooded 
and therefore are set back considerably when housed, hardly ever 
producing a crop of really good flowers and stems before the middle 
of January. Even smaU, late propagated stock, housed about 
October, wiU require considerably longer than stock planted in 
July when everything is in favor of plant growth. 



CARNATIONS 
Cultural Notes 



305 



Plants which have been growing in the benches from July on 
will usually produce side shoots at the base of or along the flower 
stems by November, which, when about 3 in. long make ideal 
cuttings. No knife or trimming is required. Hold the stem with 
the left hand and with a sideward twist of the right you can easily 
remove the shoot its entire length, ready for the propagating bench. 
Insert in the sand a good inch deep and press the sand firmly. Don't 
shade the cuttings during December; they won't wilt if the sand 
is kept fairly moist at all times, and if just a little bottom heat can 
be had. Inside of a month ninety-five per cent of the cuttings are 
rooted, ready for 2-in. pots. A house of 50 deg. is all right for propagat- 
ing as well as for the small stock. By February the plants are 
ready for a shift into 3s and the removal of their centers so as to 
avoid developing a flower stem, and to encourage the plants to grow 
bushy. By the middle or end of April, the plants can be transferred 
to a coldframe to be hardened off, the first and second week giving 
plenty of air on bright days and finally removing the sashes alto- 
gether. Get ready to plant in the field by early May, allowing about 
10 in. between the plants in the row, and sufficient room between 
the rows to permit cultivating. 




Fig. 123.— Gabnations m the Field. Some 66,000 plants grown as a substitute 

for farm crops near Washington, D. C, for a retailer in that city. Set out iu April, 

the plants were well along when this picture was taken in July. 



306 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Conserving the Essential Moisture 

One good watering after planting is usually sufficient except in 
an exceptionally dry season; but if you have a deeply worked soil 
to start with and run between the rows with a hoe or cultivator once 
a week, watering with the hose is likely to produce soft growth 
and do more harm than good. Keep the plants pinched, never al- 
lowing buds to form. By the middle of July the plants are ready to 
be hfted with a spading fork. If the soil is too dry let this be done 
so as to get a good mass of the roots and a Uttle soil cUnging to the 
plants, either wait for a good rain or water the plants thoroughly a 
day or two before they are to be hfted. 

In the meantime the benches should have been made ready; 
the soil in them should be neither too wet nor too dry. Plant, 
according to the sorts, approximately 10 to 12 in. apart and just 
a little deeper than they were in the field. During very hot weather 
put a good mud wash on the roof of the house. Water thoroughly 
after planting and spray the plants hghtly several times' during the 
day so as to prevent wilting. After the third day remove a little of 
the mud and keep this up so that in about a week after planting the 
glass is clean again. Examine the soil in the benches from day to 
day and try to keep it moist, but not soaking wet; also let up on the 
spraying except on hot days during the noon hour. Cultivating the 
surface of the soil will keep it moist and cool below. 

The first buds will be on short stems and should not be allowed 
to flower; pinch them out and let the strength go into the next lot 
of shoots. Apply wires lengthwise and twine crosswise over the 
benches to form supports long before the plants need them. Fumi- 
gate regularly to keep green fly down and cultivate and remove any 
yellow or decayed foliage. If you have made use, when filling the 
benches, of rather heavy soil with about one-fourth weU-decomposed 
manure, the plants won't need feeding until Christmas, when, after 
a Ught cultivating, a layer of bonemeal and sheep manure just thick 
enough to cover the surface will be in order. Follow this with a 1- 
or 2-in. layer of good soil. Or a mulch consisting of equal parts 
well-decomposed cow manure and soil can be used instead of the 
bonemeal and sheep manure. In the case of healthy plants and 
such as are producing flowers, more food may be applied by the end 
of January. Keeping the flowering stems free of side shoots and 
allowing just one bud per stem will make for large flowers, yet there 
are times during Midwinter, with flowers scarce and a retail grower 
having design work on hand, when it might be considered desirable 
to aUow two buds to remain on the white and light pink ones. K 
there should be no call for long-stemmed flowers by the time the 
first bud of the pair opens, the flower may be removed and the 
second bud allowed to bloom. 



CARNATIONS 307 

Summer Culture Afield and Indoors 

To the man with limited space during April and May, planting 
his Carnations in the field will always appeal; for with houses full 
of bedding stock there is but little room for the Carnations. Plant- 
ing them out in the field will permit of cleaning out the houses and 
repairing the benches. The plants themselves are out of the way for 
ten weeks or so while the busy season is on, which is better for them; 
the few weeks in the open help to keep them healthy. However, 
those who have sufficient space and can get a bench ready for plant- 
ing by early May and have well-established 3^/^- or 4-in. plants, 
might just as well bench them for it will result in still eariier, long- 
stemmed flowers. 

Benches and Solid Bed Culture 

Carnations can be grown to perfection in benches holding from 
5 to 6 in. of soil, and are mostly grown that way today. Yet there 
are successful growers who plant them on solid beds and even prefer 
this method. In this case the plants, when through flowering after 
Memorial Day, are removed and the beds get a dose of lime, a layer 
of manure, are spaded over and replanted with young stock. There 
are some growers who have successfully used the soil left in the 
benches the second year, but it stands to reason that after you have 
had the plants growing in the benches for about ten months, with 
almost a daily watering it cannot be as good as fresh soil, which has 
never been used in benches. For those who can make use of the 
old soil, but who don't find it too hard to obtain fresh soil, the 
latter course is advisable. 

Late Benching 

There are occasions when another crop occupies a bench that 
is, later on, to be filled with Carnations. Rather than leave the 
plants out in the field until October or November, a better way is to 
pot them up, say about the middle of Atigust, carry them along in a 
frame or house, and plant them out when the space is ready for them. 
A plant potted in a 5-in. pot, in good soil, with proper drainage and 
taken care of, will keep on forming new roots, and will, when planted 
out later on, go right ahead. Good Carnations during February 
and later pay as well as at any other time ; if specially wanted during 
this period the plants can be benched or planted on a solid bed to 
follow Chrysanthemums. 

For Outdoor Flowering 

There isn't a florist who sells bedding stock during the Spring 
months who cannot dispose of a good number of Carnations for 
Summer and Fall flowering. There are seasons when, after the hous- 
ing is completed, the surplus of Carnations left in the field and al- 



308 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 124. — A Good-looking Carnation house. It would 

look even better if it had not been cut over just before the 

picture was taken. But the plants are there and healthy 

enough, too 



lowed to flower will 
bring in good re- 
turns, for they will 
bloom until stop- 
ped by frost. Still 
better results can 
be had by growing 
on the November- 
rooted cuttings 
for that pinpose. 
Keep them pinch- 
ed and shifted dur- 
ing the Winter 
months so they 
will develop into 
bushy plants in 4- 
in. pots by May. 
If planted out 
during that month 
and not pinched 
any more, they 
will start to flower 
in early July and 
keep it up. Almost 
every one of the 
sorts we grow 
under glass today 
is suitable for this 
purpose. 



Stem-Rot and Other Diseases 

Stem-rot is one of the dreaded diseases to which Carnations 
are subject. It usually starts soon after the plants have been 
benched. It is caused by a fungus, and anything in the fungus Une 
thrives best when there is excessive moisture, stuffy air or lack of 
ventilation, either in the house or the soil. While I like to plant just 
a little deeper in the benches than the plants were in the field— the 
object being to allow for the settling of the soil around the plants 
after several waterings have been given — this doesn't mean to plant 
a bit deeper than necessary, or so that a part of the foliage is covered 
with soil. The best preventives of stem-rot are: The avoidance of 
too much moisture; the removal of every affected plant the mimie 
it shows signs of getting yellow or starting to wilt (lift the plant 



CARNATIONS, CELASTRUS 309 

with a little soil if possible and throw it out) ; the keeping of a good 
circulation of air; and the light cultivation of the surface of the soil 
so it can breathe. 

A hot, dry atmosphere and heating pipes too close to the benches 
will bring red spider; hght salt-water solutions are best for this 
enemy, or even clear water applied under high pressure. A too 
damp, cold atmosphere will produce rust. Crippled buds and 
foliage are caused more by insect pests than by anything else, and 
here, as with Chrysanthemums, regular spraying with nicotine solu- 
tions, or ftlmigating will be found most effective in keeping the plants 
healthy and clear of insects and diseases. Information about the 
different troubles and the best known remedies may be found in 
the several State Experiment Station bulletins, which are easily 
obtained. But plants which, due to neglect of some sort, really 
become so sick as to show marked effects, are hardly worth doctoring 
up and saving; too much valuable time and space are lost in getting 
them back into shape. Better, and to my mind more sensible, it 
is to throw all such plants out and give some other crop their place. 

A Carnation plant can stand more cold than heat. While 50 
deg. at night will suit most varieties best, you can keep them healthier 
in a 40-deg. house all Winter than in one of 55 deg. or over. They 
may not flower profitably enough in a 45-deg. house during Mid- 
winter, but they usually make up for it later on. But give them a too 
warm house and you soon will notice a weak growth, which is the 
time when they are subject to diseases of all sorts. The critical 
time for Carnations is from November until February. During 
that period avoid keeping the foliage wet over night or the soil too 
moist, which is as bad (though no worse), than to allow it to become 
dust-dry before water is given. To keep it evenly moist with a 
rather dry atmosphere prevailing in the house, with good ventilation, 
is the thing, and if you have healthy stock by the first of November 
there is really no good reason why it should not be kept so by using 
ordinary precautions; yet even the best of growers fall down some- 
times, and a lot of plants on one bench wiU go wrong while another 
variety in the same house, subjected to the very same treatment 
flourishes. Such cases are hard to account for. There is a lot we 
know about Carnations, but far more that we don't know. 

CASTOR BEAN 

See Ricinus 

CELASTRUS SCANDENS (BITTERSWEET) 

You always have use for branches of Bittersweet during Mid- 
winter when they are covered with their berries or fruit of orange- 



310 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



yellow color. Many people prefer them to flowers and they can 
be used by the florist in several ways. You can grow this cUmber 
in almost any location and soil as long as you provide supports for 
it to cling to. Your customer may want a vine to cover a fence in 
a somewhat shady place; Bittersweet will do it, and when you 
mention the fact that it bears berries during Fall and Winter, it is 
no trouble at all to secure the order. 

Always include a few small plants when you make up your 

order for nursery stock. 

CELOSIAS (COCKSCOMB) 

The florist hasn't much 
use for Celosia cristata, the 
crested Cockscomb, but it is 
nevertheless a fine bedder, 
easily grown from seed sown 
about March first. The little 
plants delight in a hotbed 
where, with the heat, mois- 
ture and a situation close to 
the glass they do far better 
than in a greenhouse. 

Among other Celosias we 
have the Chinese Woolflow- 
er (C. Childsii) a most attrac- 
tive annual growing to almost 
3 ft. in height and producing 
large, scarlet flower heads re- 
sembling balls of wool. Also 
the Plume Celosia (C. Thompr 
sonii magnifica) which pro- 
duces large plumes of yellow 
and red. Pride of Castle 
Gould, a strain of this type, 
is attractive with its compact, 
erect habit and large flower 
heads. 

There is perhaps nothing 
more showy in the way of a 
formal bed than a long bor- 
der filled with Empress 
Fig. 125.-CELOSIA "Pbide of Castle Gockscomb. That is where 
Gould." By sowing seed of this Celosia these plants do best. Lill- 
in Summer and keeping the plants shifted matic conditions also have a 
and under glass later on, you can provide . j i . j ui, th^iv 

in FaU showy plants that are well adapted ^^^^^ deal to do With their 
for decorative purposes success. On the other hand, 




CELOSIA, GENTAUREA 311 

the average florist, will hardly ever get a call for a bed or border of 
these dwarf, large comb-producing sorts which are really only good 
for bedding, although a well-grown 5-in. pot pl^nt is certainly 
attractive. 

If you wish to grow on plants of Celosia cristata for Spring sales,, 
sow seed about the middle of March in gentle heat; pot up the 
seedlings into 2s, and carry in a 55-deg. house; shift by the end 
of April and get them into a hotbed. No plant enjoys bottom heat,, 
a close atmosphere and being close up to the sashes more than these 
Gelosias. An uninterrupted growth is absolutely necessary if you 
want to obtain a large comb of flowers. 

Celosia plumosa, or Feathered Cockscomb 

The feathered Celosia should be considered one of the most 
attractive annuals for the garden, and there are occasions when you 
can use it to good advantage as a cut flower. When cut with 2-ft. 
stems the blooms are very decorative and will last nicely. While 
red and yellow, cannot, perhaps, always be used to advantage during 
Summer, there are times when they are just what you want. Treat 
these Gelosias the same as other annuals. As good a way as any 
is to sow them right out in the open and thin them a little later on. 

The Thompson's hybrids of Celosia plumosa are the showiest of 
all and are particularly fine for pot culture. Sow seed in 
early August and keep the plants shifted. In good soil they will grow 
over 3 ft. in height and bear enormous plumes of feathery flowers, 
excellent for the showhouse or store. 

GENTAUREA CYANUS (BACHELOR BUTTON) 

Since we now have the double forms of Centaurea cyanus, 
there is hardly any use considering the single one any longer. 

For cut flowers outdoors the earlier you sow seed the better, 
for the plants don't do much in the heat of July and August. A 
good way to do is to sow a little seed about March, grow the plants 
on in pots and plant them out in a coldframe in April. This will 
give you some excellent long-stemmed flowers by the end of May, 
and they wiU keep right on and stiU be good by July .4th — a day 
when you wiU most likely need blue flowers. 

For Forcing Under Glass 

If you want 15-in. stems and lacge flowers during Aprfl, sow 
seed in January, tremsplant the seedlings into 2s, and by the end of 
February plant on a bench about 12 in. apart in a house of 50 deg. 
Later on supply stakes for them. If you plant in a solid bed you 
will have still better results, but the plants won't flower quite as 
early as those on the benches. 



312 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 126. — Two Useful Centaubeas. — C. americana, on left, is only suitable for 
outdoors, C imperialis is a strain of hybrids from C moschata and C. Margariise. 
Best known as Royal Sweet Sultans, they range through white, lavender, mauve, 
pink and yellow shades. Glorious for cutting indoors or outdoors. Must have 
abundance of lime in the soil 

Every florist can make good use of these Gentaureas during 
the Spring months, and even a small space devoted to them will 
pay well for the little trouble they are to raise. 

Another good Gentaurea for growing under glass in gentle heat 
for early flowering is C. imperialis or Royal Sweet Sultan. It is 
best to either sow the seed or transplant the seedlings on a soHd bed. 
You can obtain pure white, light lavender, and hght pink— aU good 
for cut flowers. These will also be fine for outdoor flowering, but 
you must sow early. Centaurea suaveolens is the yeUow Sweet 
Sultan, which can also be grown under glass. However, we find 
that this variety does best when given a rather poor soil; in one that 
is heavily manured it is liable to damp off while in a small state. 

• 

Still another beautiful sort, but adapted only for outdoor 
flowering, is Centaurea americana, far too little seen and used by 
the florist. It is also called Basket Flower. The large, Thistle- 
like flowers often are 4 in. and more across and of a beautiful rosy 
lavender color. Sow the seed in rows outdoors in May and the 



CENTAUREA, GERASTIUM 



313 



plants will start to flower by the middle of July and keep it up until 
frost. They seem to delight in hot weather, being in this quite 
different from the others. For best results, cut the buds just as 
they begin to open; the flowers will then last in good shape for 
four to five days, and with their long stems they come in very 
handy. The plants will grow fully 3 ft. tall and in rich soil should 
be staked. 

CENTAUREA GYMNOGARPA (DUSTY MILLER) 

WhUe'Centaurea candidissima is also known as Dusty Miller, 
and is a better colored border plant than C. 'gymnocarpa, it is the 
latter which the average florist raises from seed and uses most ex- 
tensively for that purpose. It is much easier to handle and grows 
in a shorter time. 

For plants in 23^-in. pots of the right size for borders, sow seed 
by the end of February and grow on cool. If you want extra sized 
plants in 3j^-in. pots to help fill vases and window boxes, sow in 
early February and grow on in a house just under 50 deg. The 
plants when well grown and about 10 in. in height, with their fern- 
hke foliage and silver-gray young leaves, are just the thing to go 
with Geraniums. 



GERASTIUM 
TOMENTOSUM 

(Snow-in-Summer) 

This is another de- 
sirable, hardy little fo- 
liage plant, as well as 
a flowering plant, for 
the rockery. When in 
flower it presents a 
sheet of white blossoms, 
but with its sflvery 
leaves, it is every bit as 
good when out of bloom. 
If you set out just a 
few plants in the open, 
you wfll always have a 
stock to draw from 
when a customer wants 
a clump or a dozen 
planted on his or her 
grounds. 




Fig. 127. — Centaurea cyanus which, sown out- 
doors in April, wiU produce great numbers of 
splendid cut flowers in many attractive soft shades 
on 12-in. stems, all Summer long 



314 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

GERASUS (FLOWERING CHERRY) 

Both the double- and single-flowering forms of Gerasus make 
desirable shrubs to plant. You can get the weeping double-flowering 
sorts in the shape of small trees which will give you a little change 
from the usual Weeping Mulberry found on almost every place. 

GERCIS CANADENSIS (RED BUD OR JUDAS TREE) 

I don't believe in having one small home ground laid out and 
planted just like another. You should do all you can to avoid it; 
certainly there are enough ways and enough kind of shrubs and 
trees to make it unnecessary. But I don't think there would be 
the least harm in having one good specimen of Red Bud or Judas 
Tree in every yard. Maybe you have seen it in full bloom, the 
branches covered with the hlac-pinkish blossoms ahead of almost 
everything else among the flowering shrubs and trees. 

The plants are usuaUy small when you buy them, but it is 
weU to select an open spot for them, as they will grow in time into 
little trees. Of course they are usually not at their best when small. 

CHAMOMILE, FALSE 

See Boltonia 

GHEIRANTHUS CHEIRI (WALLFLOWER) 

Why not more Wallflowers ? There isn't a retail grower any- 
where who, during early Spring, couldn't sell WaUflowers in pots 
or as cut stock if he had them. We call them English WaUflowers, 
but they are as popular and fully as much used in other parts of 
Europe as in England. Many thousands are sold in each of the 
larger city markets. 

It seems that everybody loves Wallflowers and this, to a great 
extent, is due to their delightful fragrance. While they are fine 
for outdoor blooming, you can have them at their best under glass. 
Can you possibly imagine a more charming combination for a 
basket in March or April, than Wallflowers, Forget-me-nots, 
Mignonette, Jonquils and a few Pansies ? The best part of it is 
that even the florist with not the best of houses or heating facilities 
can have a supply of each of these flowers on his benches. It is 
these simple flowers that people want today. Their simplicity and 
sweetness is what makes them so desirable. Don't worry about not 
having Roses to cut or orchids ; grow some of the above-mentioned 
old favorites and grow them well, and you needn't worry. You 
will make profit enough to enable you to buy Roses and orchids. 

Cultural Notes 

There are quite a number of single and double sorts of Wall- 
flowers. The most desirable, however, has large, single flowers, 



CHEIRANTHUS, GHORIZEMA 



315 



of a brownish-red shade, the plants being of medium height and 
adaptable to both pot culture and to the production of cut blooms. 
Sow the first lot of seed about the middle of April and transplant 
the seedlings when large enough to the open field. Lift in October 
and pot into 5s or 6s according to their size. The plants, up to 
February, are just as well off in a coldframe. 

About the middle of February the first lot can be brought into 
a Carnation house temperature where they will start to flower in 
March. A heavy plant in a 6-in. pot will have from fifteen to 
twenty flower spikes and can either be sold as a pot plant or the 
flowers can be used for cutting. Other batches of plants may be 
brought in from time to time ; also a later sowing can be made, say, 
about the middle of May. If you have plenty of field plants they 
can be carried along in frames and planted on sohd beds in a cold- 
house or in benches and grown on for cut flowers. Or plants carried 
in a frame can be planted outdoors in early Spring where they will 
make a showy bed. Of course, it all depends on what variety you 
plant. You cannot make a cheap strain of mixed seed pay, but 
there are excellent named sorts 
such as GoUath, dark brown; 
Ruppert, brownish-red; and 
Gohath Triumph, purplish- 
crimson. 

CHERRY, FLOWERING 

See Cerasus 

CHERRY, JERUSALEM 

See Solanum 

CHINESE LANTERN 
PLANT. See Physalis 

GHORIZEMA 

ILLIGIFOLIUM 

(TANGO PLANT) 

You may never want to 
grow on a stock of Ghorize- 
mas yourself, for it takes sev- 
eral years to grow a fair-sized 
specimen from a cutting; and 
even then, although the plants, 
covered with their light green, 
HoUy-like, glossy leaves and 
pink flowers, are attractive, 
it isn't likely you will sell 
many. Leave the growing on 
of the plants, then, to the 
specialist. He who knows how 



•^ 


^ J^ 


-W- 


i^fe 


"'-•^ 




1^ 




i 1 


u ' 



Fig. 128. — Chorizema macrophyllum in 
Flower. When well grown a number of 
the Ghorizemas make beautiful flowering 
pot plants, but even though they are cold- 
house plants it hardly pays the smaller 
florist to grow them on from cuttings 



316 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




CHORIZEMA, CHRYSANTHEMUMS 317 

to handle Ericas most likely will also handle Acacias and Chorize- 
mas. If you have any leftover plants, cut them back a little, shift 
them into larger pots in May and plunge them outdoors in a frame 
over Summer. You will have no trouble in overwintering them nice- 
ly in a cool house, so as to have them in flower again during March. 

CHRISTMAS CACTUS 

See Epiphyllum 

CHRYSANTHEMUM FRUTESCENS 

See Marguerites 

CHRYSANTHEMUMS 

Roses and Carnations are with us all through the year, while the 
season of the Chrysanthemums is over in just about ten weeks; yet 
the latter make up for it by occupying the entire stage when they do 
appear. Everything else in flowers has to take a back seat during 
their stay; they crowd all competitors into the comers of the dis- 
play cooler. They decorate the show window and the store as nothing 
else is able to, and with their endless variety of sizes, forms and 
colorings make possible exhibitions all their own in the largest show 

halls of the country. 

JUST about when the Hickory sheds its weather-beaten brownish 
leaves, the Bur Oak and Maple put on tints of Fall, the Dahlia 
and the Cosmos hang their heads newly touched by frost and Nature 
outdoors makes ready to go to sleep, the Chrysanthemums in 
gorgeous color array usher in a new, busy Winter season for the 
florist. They hven and brighten up dark November days and help 
us to celebrate Thanksgiving ; and then, one by one, they make way 
again for the Rose, the Violet, the Carnation, the red Cyclamen, 
the Poinsettia, and the Christmas rush, having tarried with us but 
for a little while. We are pleased enough when we behold the first 
flower ready to be cut, and equally glad when the last one 
leaves us. 

Their Value to the Flohist 

Chrysanthemums will thrive in a greater variety of soils and 
cUmates than perhaps any other plant the florist handles. They 
respond freely to good care, and while the wholesale grower doesn't 
always find them profitable, mostly on account of market conditions, 
they are one of the most important crops the retail grower has. 
Not only can they be successfully grown in the most uptodate 
greenhouse structure, but good results may be had if one has only a 
sashhouse. They fill the benches when emptied of bedding stock 
and, in turn, make room for a Winter crop, for small stock to be grown 
on for another year, or for Easter plants. 

The florist out in the country couldn't have a better advertise- 
ment for the opening of the Fall and Winter seasons than a little 



318 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Chrysanthemum show all his own, which is bound to boost things 
and have a beneficial effect all Winter. There isn't a better business 
stimulant, not to say anything about the advantage of turning your 
crop into dollars. 

The retail grower who doesn't make Chrysanthemums pay 
often has only himself to blame. By not paying sufficient attention 
to the sorts he handles and how he treats them, he is apt to keep 
on growing outofdate sorts for which there is but little demand; or 
he fails to recognize the necessity of carrying early, midseason 
and late sorts in the right proportions, which, to my mind, is of as 
great importance as anything else. 

How TO Grow Chrysanthemums 

For the man who retails the Chrysanthemums he grows the 
main thing to bear in mind is to plan so as to have flowers to cut 
from the middle of October up to near Christmas. This may be 
easy enough for those who can devote several houses to them, but 
even when the plants are handled on a small scale it can be done. 
Avoid the mistake made by so many who grow in the neighborhood 
of 2500 plants consisting of say, 1000 Major Bonnaffon, 500 Eaton, 
500 Ivory, and 500 mixed Pompons. One may make money out of 
such an assortment, but one is more apt to have to dump a large 




Fig. 130. — The Pompon Chrysanthemum. But little disbudding is required by 

the Pompon, yet there are times when, with certain varieties, you can help things 

along by proper pinching back. This produces graceful sprays with the flowers 

evenly distributed — a feature that makes the plants much more attractive 



CHRYSANTHEMUMS 319 

surplus on the market at a time when the large grower ships in his 
main crop, and when the returns cannot possibly equal what it 
has cost to grow the plants. While single-stem sorts are classed as 
show flowers, and while every retail grower should have a bench or 
more devoted to them so that his patrons can admire them, he will 
find that it is the Pompons, singles and small flowering sorts, such 
as are suitable for table and house decoration that bring in the 
money from a retail trade, even though he may not sell them all. 
Let us take, for example, a florist who benches 2500 plants. For 
money-making purposes they should consist of not over 700 single- 
stem sorts as follows: About fifty each of early white, pink, bronze, 
and yeUow; fifty each of midseason pink, and white, and 100 mid- 
season yellow; 100 each of either pink or white, and yellow; and 
about 100 more varieties of other colors and exhibition or show 
flowers. The remaining 1800 should consist of small flowering sorts, 
extra early, early, midseason, late and very late. The retail grower 
who has to ship surplus flowers to the wholesale market usually loses 
money on them, but you can safely figure that he who grows only 
enough to supply his wants and often has to buy as many or twice 
as many more flowers besides, is making money. Gut your flowers 
as you want them, yet not so close as to prevent your house or 
houses from looking well until the end of the season. Don't plant 
a batch of Niza alongside of Diana, or Golden Glimax by the side of 
Godfrey. Plant the sorts in rotation and when one is through, 
clean up the space and do not let the sight of cut-down stalks or 
Bamboo canes detract from the eifect of plants coming into flower 
nearby. Chrysanthemum time is show time. Always have that 
in mind. 

What Varieties to Grow 

To my mind, there is no better way nor easier way to find out 
exactly what varieties to grow than to go by what the larger growers 
select for their own use. While there are still with us a dozen or so 
old-timers that we have had for the past twenty years whereas new 
ones come and go, stUl it pays any man growing, Chrysanthemums 
to invest a few dollars each year in novelties. It is the only way to 
keep to the front. Discard what you don't want and forget about 
it, and the following Spring, when the specialist sends out his latest 
list, select some more and send your check for them. If you are a 
lover of flowers you will keep on looking forward to seeing these 
plants grow and flower just as you have done in previous years. 

Cultural Hints 

For detailed cultural notes get Elmer Smith's "Chrysanthe- 
mum Manual," a little book fuU of valuable information. But 



320 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

to the beginner I would like to say that the Chrysanthemum is 
anything but a hothouse plant. In starting out, and even in the 
case of the man already established but with only a limited amount 
of space in which to carry his stock plants properly over Winter and 
not under a bench, the best way to grow commercial sorts is either 
to purchase, during March and April, rooted cuttings of the desired 
varieties and pot them up into 2i/^-in. pots, or to buy healthy 2}4-ia. 
stock ready for planting out by the end of April and during May. 
Just as soon as you can get the benches ready for planting 
after they have been emptied of bedding stock and thoroughly 
cleaned, provide proper drainage by spreading on the bottom a thin 
layer of partly rotted sod or strawy manure. While a mellow, 
sandy loam mixed with one-fourth well-decomposed manure makes, 
perhaps, the best material for filling of the benches, almost any good 
garden soil with a liberal amount of manure will grow good Ghrysan- 
anthemums. Allow 8 to 10 in. for the single stems and. 12 in. for 
the Pompons. For single stems remove all side shoots and growth 
from the base of the plants; for the early ones select your huds 
around the first part of August; the end of August and early Sep- 
tember is time enough to disbud the midseason and late sorts. 

. Bear in mind that in order to obtain good stems and large 
flowers the sooner after the middle of April you can bench the 
plants the better. Not that you cannot obtain good results from 
such as are planted out by the end of May, but in this case, you 
should have heavy stock to start out with. Midseason and late 
sorts can be planted all through the month of June, and also the 
Pompons, which should be kept pinched up to August so as to ob- 
tain from six to eight branches. AU the buds on these branches are 
usually left to flower unless you have sorts on which you prefer 
to have, say, three or four flowers to the stem instead of six or eight, 
which means that you must select the largest buds, properly spaced, 
and remove the balance. 



The Art of Disbudding 

In the single-stem sorts we have crown and terminal buds. 
The crown buds appear first and alone. In the case of early sorts 
consisting of plants which have been benched in early May so 
that by the time this bud appears the stems are 23^ ft. and over in 
height, heavy, and with good foliage, these buds are allowed to re- 
main and, flower. This of course necessitates the removal of the 
lateral growth surrounding them and any and all of the growths 
which may appear along the stems afterward, as you want to direct 
all the energy of the plant toward developing this bud. On the 
other hand, if this bud is removed and a lateral shoot is allowed to 
continue the growth of the plant, while some sorts make a second 



CHRYSANTHEMUMS 



321 




Fig. 131. — The Vase of "Chadwick" Chrysanthemum (grown by Fritz Bahr) 

that won the silver cup offered by the Chicago Greenhouse Manufacturers at the 

first National Flower Show at Chicago, 1908. 

crown bud, usually a cluster of buds will appear in the course of 
a few weeks, the center one of which is called the terminal bud, and 
is finally selected to produce the flower. Remove all of the sur- 
rounding buds unless the center or largest of these cluster buds 
'is deformed in some way, in which case it is well to take it off and 
select one of the others. 



322 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Some sorts will produce better flowers from crown, others from 
terminal buds. If you purchase new sorts from a specialist he will 
tell you which to select. Climatic conditions also make a great 
difference. Although when growing single flowers on a small scale 
you may not be much out of the way whichever one you select, 
experience wiU soon show the best method to apply with each of 
the sorts you handle. 

Feeding 

There is far more harm done by overfeeding than by starving 
the plants. To the beginner, I would say, if you have a good soil 
to start out with and if the plants are doing nicely, let them alone 
until the buds are well formed. Usually by that time a mulch con- 
sisting of two parts weU-decomposed cow manure and two parts 
good soil spread over the surface of the benches 1 or 2 in. in thick- 
iiess will be helpful; or this can be applied later — say, the latter 
jpait of July. By early September give hght doses of Uquid cow 
manure every two weeks. Never use chemicals unless you obtain 
them from rehable sources and then use them carefuUy according 
to directions. 

Insect Pests and Diseases 

There are about tWenty difl'erent insects and diseases ready 
to ruin your plants, IJPt "whether the pest is midge, aphis or thrips 
(which are among the most troublesome) nicotine in one form or 
another wiU control it best. But you must keep at it, and examine 
the plants dafly in order to keep them clean. Never propagate 
from diseased stock. 

Bench, Solid Bed, or Pot Culture 

For single-stem flowers I prefer raised benches with about 5 in. 
of soil in which you can control things better. For Pompons either 
benches or solid beds wiU do. Frequently growers have houses 
which are closed during the Winter months; these can be used for 
bedding stock during Spring, and then for Pompons up to the end 
of November, thus requiring but little heat and yet paying weU. 

Almost any sort of Chrysanthemum is adapted for pot cul- 
ture, but there are some, of a dwarf habit, such as the Gap family, 
which for commercial purposes are better. For the busy man and 
the one who only wants 5-, 6- and 7-in. pot plants, a good way is 
to start out with 2- to 23/^-in. stock during May or June and keep 
the plants pinched and shifted during the Summer months. Plung- 
ing the pots up to their rims in a frame outdoors and aUowing plenty 
of space between them saves work. Another way is to plant them 



CHRYSANTHEMUMS 



323 




out, keep them 
pinched back up 
to the middle of 
August or the 
first week in Sep- 
tember, pot them 
and carry them 
along in a cool, 
airy house. There 
is always a de- 
mand for pot 
Chrysanthemums 
during October 
and November — 
not so much for 
specimens, but 
rather for plants 
that can be retailed 
at from $1.50 up 
to $4 or $5 each. 
These almost every 
retail grower can 
handle himself, but 
if he wishes a few 
extra large speci- 
mens such as re- 
quire a lot of care 
and attention dur- 
ing the Summer 
months, he is bet- 
ter off if he has the specialist supply them when he is ready 
to finish them off in readiness for early sale. 



Fig. 132. — Eably Flowering Hardy Chrysanthe- 
mums. In this class of Chrysanthemum the fact that the 
plants flower early enough to escape frost injury is of far 
greater importance than their hardiness 



Eakly Sorts in Frames 

Almost any sort that comes into flower from the middle of 
October until the early part of November can be grown in a tem- 
porary framehouse or frame, and so doesn't need to take up valu- 
able greenhouse space which can be occupied by sorts coming into 
flower later. To those not having a great deal of bench space this 
means a great deal. 

For frame culture, prepare beds about 4j^ ft. in width, holding 
four rows of plants, allowing not over 10 in. of space between the 
plants in the rows. By the end of September they will have set 



324 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

buds and a temporary frame can be built over the beds to support 
3 by 6 ft. sash. Even if there be no danger of frost the sash should 
be placed over the plants for rain and damp nights don't do the 
opening flowers much good. Close planting will give you longer 
stems and softer growth, so sufficient headroom should be pro- 
videdf^when you build the frame. 

Outdoor Sorts 

There may be sorts which flower early and overwinter almost 
anywhere with little or no protection. But after many years of 
experience we find our climate in the Middle West too severe even 
for the most highly recommended ones. There is not, however, 
much to regret about it, for if your customer pays you twenty-five 
cents in May for an early outdoor flowering Chrysanthemum, and 
such a plant in the garden is loaded down with flowers by October 
when everything else has practically gone, that quarter was well 
spent. Every retail grower should not only be on the lookout for 
early sorts for outdoor flowering, but should grow on a good-sized stock 
and push its sale. For they are a requisite in every garden, and 
it isn't going to interfere in the least with the sale of flowers you 
have under glass to handle them. Flowers from plants grown in 
the open usually have such hard-wooded stems that they make poor 
keepers when cut, but you cannot beat them — with all their different 
shades and colorings — when planted in masses. While there are 
seasons when early severe frosts may affect them, ordinarily when a 
customer once plants them it means repeat orders every succeeding 
Spring. 

Carrying Stock Plants Over Winter 

If you want 200 plants of a certain sort for another year's 
planting, lift about twenty cut-down plants and plant them in a flat 
not less than 3 in. deep. Label and place in your coolest house 
until the end of February, when they should be brought into a 
Carnation-house temperature and planted on a sunny bench. Or 
you can carry the stock plants in a frame. Quite a few growers 
plant out in the field each Spring small 2i^-in. plants to be lifted 
in Fall and carried on as stock to propagate from. To my mind 
there is nothing better than this method for obtaining healthy 
cuttings full of hfe. 

Those anxious to make the greatest number of cuttings from 
a small number of plants, can, by setting out their stock plants during 
early February on a bench and later on taking the first batch of 
rooted cuttings and planting them out again, keep on taking cut- 
tings all through the Spring. With proper care the plants will 
continue to furnish breaks and a cutting with three or four joints 
will root as easily in sand as a Geranium. It needs no shade up to 



CHRYSANTHEMUM, CIBOTIUM, CINERARIA 325 

April, after which just enough shade should be applied to keep 
it from wilting. 

CIBOTIUM SCHIEDEI 

There are several beautiful, stately so-called Tree Ferns, but 
only a few of them are of interest to the florist, the most useful 
being Cibotium Schiedei, a native of Mexico. 

For store, conservatory or show house, this makes an excellent 
decorative plant. Furthermore, being able to stand a dry atmos- 
phere, to w4iich many of our other ferns object, we find it frequently 
giving satisfaction as a house plant. 

While the plants are easily grown from spores, because of the 
space they take up and the time required to obtain specimens 
with long fronds, the retail grower finds it best to purchase fully 
developed plants from the specialist. You will want only a few at 
a time. In fact, for the average show window, one plant with a 
spread of from 4 to 6 ft. is quite enough. 

CINERARIAS 

If you want to brighten up the show house during the Midwinter 
months, there are no better plants to do it with than Cinerarias. Your 
customers may object to them on account of their coarse foliage or 
because they don't make ideal house plants, but they caimot help but 
admire a properly staged benchful, witii its lively colors. It is just 
another way to advertise and make people think of flowers. 

Every retail grower can manage to have good Cinerarias 
during the Winter months — in fact the plants seem to much prefer 
the old sash house and a rather close atmosphere to anything else. 
They want to grow where it is moist, yet not too warm; they like 
good soil and plenty of water; and, as with the Calceolarias, they 
want to be kept free from green fly. Almost any plant house with 
a temperature ranging from 45 to 50 deg. but closer to the 45 deg. 
point dm-ing Winter, and plenty of sun wiU suit them. Put them in 
ia hot house and on a bench where they will dry out quickly — and 
you can do nothing with them. 

For Christmas Flowering 

Many thousands of Cinerarias could be disposed of by retail 
growers around Christmas and it is an easy matter to have a 
batch in flower during December. You can always seU plants in 
flower at holiday time for from a dollar and a half to two 
dollars each. At present we don't cater enough to those who can- 
not afford to spend more. We have no trouble in getting stock 
which we have to retail at five or ten dollars in order to make 
anything, but during and right after the World War, we didn't 
pay enough attention to those who couldn't pay that price. 



326 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

To have Cinerarias in flower by Christmas, sow seed in late 
June, keep the little plants alongside your Primulas in a cool, airy 
house, and shade them a little. Don't let them suffer for want of 
water or moisture in the house and keep shifting them so you will 
have them in 6-in. pots by October. Give them full sunlight after 
that and place them in the Carnation house on a bench, allowing 
plenty of space between the plants. Plants not shifted after the 
latter part of September will, as soon as they are potbound, set 
buds, while those you keep shifted into larger pots will most likely 
keep on growing until the end of January, after which date it is 
hard to stop any from flowering. 



Plants for Later Flowering 

Seeds of Cinerarias may be sown up to October and plants 
had in flower up to Easter, but the later you sow the more careful 
you have to be not to let the plants become stunted, as this usually 




Fig. 133. — A Specimen Cineraria showing what can be done with a good plant. 
A few like this about the middle of January will make things Uvely in the show 
house. Pot into rather heavy soil and give plenty of room and a cool but sunny 

house 



CINERARIA, GLARKIA, CLEMATIS 327 

results in their setting buds and flowers. If you can keep them 
going they can be grown up to 5- and 6-in. specimens, even for late 
flowering. Your largest plants, however, will be those sown in 
Midsummer and kept shifted during late Fall. With proper man- 
agement, specimens in 8-in. pots, thirty inches across and over 
can be had, but I don't know whether such pay any better than good 
stock in 6s. 

You can also grow the plants in frames outdoors during the 
Summer and Fall months as long as there is some one to take care 
of them. 

There are some excellent strains of Cinerarias to be had and 
seed of hght and salmon pinks can be bought separately by those 
who are not in favor of the deeper shades of red and purple. C. 
stellata is a fine variety, growing into enormous plants producing 
30-in. stems, loaded with hundreds of smaU star-shaped flowers, 
some of Ihem of exquisite coloring and fine for cutting. Even if 
you never sell a plant, it will pay you to always have a nice lot of 
Cinerarias on hand during the Winter and the first three months of 
the year. They wiU help you in keeping up the show, which is more 
cheaply done with Cinerarias than tdmost any other stock, especially 
if you don't have to buy them. 

CLARKIA 

The improved sorts of Clarkia, such as Salmon Queen and 
Queen Mary, are weU worth growing among your annuals for cut 
flowers. They grow fuUy three feet taU, bloom all Summer and 
their double flowers are borne on long stems. Treat them the same 
as other annuals. 

You can also use them for flowering under glass, sowing, the 
seed about December, growing the little seedlings on in pots and 
planting in a cool house in February. They don't stand a hot 
house, but if given plenty of time, like the Lupines, they make good 
cut flowers which, if cut when only partly open, will last for days. 

CLEMATIS 

Every florist should plant out at least two dozen Clematis paniculata 
somewhere on his own grounds, just to cut from when in flower 

Clematis paniculata doesn't stay in flower much more than 
about three weeks, but during that time you will have good use for 
the beautiful little, sweet-scented, white flowers on graceful branches 
covered with their small foliage. 

You cannot get a better effect for a floral wreath, about the 
end of August and early in September, than a combination of 
Lilium speciosum rubrum and this Clematis; and there is nothing finer 
for a spray than a few sprigs of Clematis with some larger flower. 



328 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Even if you haven't any use for the flowers themselves, if you have 
the plants in a place where they can be seen, you will have a good 
ad that wiU lead to your taking orders for plants for the following 
Spring's delivery. 

This Clematis is one of the best hardy climbers you can recom- 
mend. C. Jackmanii and C. Henryi often cause disappointment by 
dying after having made five or six feet of growth, but C. panieulata 
hardly ever causes trouble or fails to do well even when planted in 
soil not of the best. 

This Clematis is easily grown from seed but it won't pay the 
florist using only a few plants each year to raise it. Rather let your 
nurseryman furnish what plants you need. Among the shrubby 
forms of Clematis are severaj good ones; C. ereda is especially good, 
about three feet in height and covered with white flowers in June. 

COB^A SCANDENS 

Easily the best of all Summer climbers; a fast grower, almost free from 
disease or insect pests, and good for sun or shade. Starting out with 
heavy plants, the purchaser doesn't have to wait until October before 
the vines cover the front porch trellis. 

If you have among your customers some who are willing to pay 
the price, you can afford to sow seeds of Cobaea about the first of 
February, pot the seedhngs into 23^-in. pots, then pinch them 
several times, shift them into 4s and later on into 6s and put a 6-ft. 
Bamboo stake in each pot. Keep on tying up the six or eight shoots 
as they grow and by May the plants wiU be as high as the stakes. 
If planted out, they will, by the end of July, have made another 
six or eight feet of growth. 

For smaUer plants, sow a month later — ^and you may well have 
another batch coming on from seed sown the end of March. The 
seeds should always be put in edgewise; have the flat fiUed with 
soil and press each seed into the surface no matter what else you 
do. UsuaUy the two seed leaves will have a 2- or 3-in. stem; when 
you pot the seedlings up, try to get them well down into the pots, 
so the two leaves touch the surface of the soil. Then, when you 
shift the next time, set the plants as deep as you can and never 
neglect to tie the plants in good time. It is an awful job to tackle a 
batch of plants which have been allowed to grow into each other for 
several weeks or a month. 

COCKSCOMB 

See Celosia 

COCOS WEDDELLIANA 

Always carry a small stock of this dainty palm, whether you 
purchase plants in 2-in. pots for the center of fern dishes or specimens 



GOCOS, COLEUS 



329 




Fig. 134. — Gocos Weddelliana is the ideal center plant for a fern dish in a 2J^- 

or 2J^-Lq. size. When grown on into a 6-, 7-, or 8-in. specimen, no other palm can 

compare with it in gracefulness; besides, it makes an excellent house plant 



in 5- to 6-in. pots. One is as soft and graceful as the other, and all 
are among best house plants. Often a customer will call you up 
and have you send for her fern dish to refill it; everything in it has 
died, but the Kttle Gocos in the center is still there in good shape. 
Let the palm specialist grow the Gocos you need and you do 
the seUing. It will pay you best. 

COLEUS 

Goleus are part of your bedding stock in Spring. The day is 
over for mating use of them as decorative pot plants during Winter, 
which is not to say that they are not beautiful, but, as in the case of 
the Rex Begonias, something more graceful is wanted as a border 
for flower beds or for use by itself in beds and borders. Very showy 
effects may be had with Goleus and many are used for cemetery 
planting; they may also be used to advantage in filling window 
boxes and for that purpose you want bushy stock out of 3- or 3)^-in. 
pots. A good way is to root cuttings during January, use the httle 
plants for cuttings again and, from April on, let them grow the way 
they want to without any more pinching. 



330 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

"Of all the stock we grow under glass, nothing will grow quicker 
into a salable plant during Spring than Goleus." That remark was 
made about thirty years ago by the late Peter Henderson and is 
true today. Only, at that period Coleus ranked almost second to 
Geraniums in importance as bedders, and three to four weeks from 
the time the cutting was put into the sand the plant was ready in 
a 2-in. pot for bedding out. You can still practice this method 
today, if you have enough stock plants to take good sized cuttings 
from and use enough bottom heat and a 55- to 60-deg. house to grow 
them in. 

For propagating purposes, root cuttings in August, grow the 
plants on in pots and shift into 4s by October; overwinter them in 
a 55-deg. house, pinch them back several times and by February 
those stock plants will furnish you and keep on furnishing you with 
great quantities of cuttings from which, later on, you can again 
start propagating. 

Varieties of Coleus Used Today 

For hanging baskets and window boxes the pink and yeUow 
Traihng Queen are used quite extensively; if in a sunny position 
and not starved they are very effective. Golden Queen and Ver- 
schaffeltii are the best when you want yellow and red effects for 
bedding. Christmas Gem, Queen Victoria and American Beauty 
when well grown in 5- or 6-in. pots can be used to advantage for 
Christmas, for which purpose cuttings should be rooted in early 
August and the plants kept shifted and pinched up to the end of 
October. The good sorts for both bedding and pot culture 
are: Butterfly, Lord Palmerton, Beckwith's Gem, Salvator, Fire- 
brand, Pink Verschaffeltii, Defiance, and May Laver, but these are 
only a few of many others. 




Fig. J35. — An Effective Coleus Bed. As long as bedding plants are used, there 
will always be a place for Goleus. No other class of plant furnishes agreater variety 
of gorgeous foliage colors or is better adapted for beddin" 



COREOPSIS, CORNUS 331 

COLUMBINE 

See Aquilegia 

COREOPSIS LANCEOLATA 

A fine plant for the hardy border and as good a cut flower 
for the florist. The large, deep yellow. Cosmos-like flowers are borne 
on long stems and are fine keepers. Though at their best in early 
Summer, the plants will produce a few flowers even up until Fall. 
Sow seed outdoors in July and transplant seedUngs to six inches 
apart where they are to flower; or, if you expect to sell part of your 
plants during Fall or Spring, set them in beds in row s about four 
inches apart and leave every other row when thinning and selUng. 

Under glass Coreopsis can be brought into flower by the middle 
of April nicely. Sow in June outdoors and transplant the seedUngs 
into good soil allowing eight inches between them. With at all 
favorable growing conditions, they wiU form heavy plants by 
October. After the frost has cut down the foliage — not before — 
lift the plants and heel them in a coldframe where they can remain 
until the end of January; then bring in and plant them in a solid 
bed in a 45-deg. house. If, in March, the temperature goes to 50 
deg. and over, it won't hurt; but the plants will not stand for hard 
forcing. 

CORNFLOWER ASTER 

See Stokes ia 

CORNUS (DOGWOOD) 

Not everywhere does Cornus florida, the large white-flowering 
Dogwood do weU, and in colder sections we have to be satisfied with 
some of the others, which are used mainly for the sake of the wonder- 
ful coloring of their bark while they are dormant. 

Cornus sanguinea and C. sibirica are among the showiest of 
all dormant shrubs during Winter, with their red twigs sticking 
out of the snow. You want to plant them in masses in order to see 
them at their best, and each year cut out a little of the old wood 
in order to encourage new growth which will be the best colored. 
There is also a Golden Dogwood (C. lutea) which is weU worth plant- 
ing. While it is good in Winter and can be planted as a foreground 
for the red twigged sorts, it is most highly colored in early Spring, just 
as the sap gets into the branches and before the leaves appear. 

These Dogwoods grow in any sofl, but of course do best with 
plenty of moisture. If you ever figure on a planting for a good 
Winter effect, try to plant conifers as a background. In front of 
them, place Red Dogwood, not in regular rows but rather in 
irregular groups or large clumps; and stfll more in the foreground 
plant the Golden Dogwood. Then, if you wish, finish off with dwarf 
Barberry (Berberis Thunbergii.) 



332 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

COSMOS 

There isn't a great deal of money to be made out of Cosmos, 
but the florist should include it among his annuals for Summer 
and Fall flowering. In Spring you need the plants your customers 
will want for the old-fashioned border or the cut flower beds; and 
in Fall they are among the most graceful of cut flowers if frost 
doesn't come too soon. Some grow Cosmos in pots and place them 
under glass in the early Fall to cut from when the outdoor ones are 
past. 

We now have an early sort, also a semi-double, and we can not 
only grow the smaU plants in a frame, but tdso have some in 23^-in. 
pots for those who want to pay a little more, rather than plant out 
from the frame seedlings ten inches long, which usuaUy wilt badly 
for a few days after they are set out. 

CRAB APPLE 

See Pyrus 

CRANBERRY, HIGH BUSH 

See Viburnum 

CRAT^GUS (HAWTHORN) 

Hawthorns make beautiful large shrubs and small trees, but 
don't make the mistake of planting them in the smaU shrubbery 
border of a 50-ft. lot, for these plants want room to develop and 
can never be seen at their best until after they have been planted 
five or six years. 

There are double white-, pink-, and red-flowering Hawthorns 
and among the native sorts we have those which flower in Spring 
but are most admired for their bright red fruits, which cover the 
branches long after the frost has cleaned them of all their leaves. 

CROCUS 

There isn't much to an idividual Crocus flower, but when you 
see a mass of them in the lawn right after the sun has melted the 
snow away — often so early that there are still traces of it on the 
north side of the residence — they surely look attractive. 

Every retail florist can sell Crocus bulbs in the Fall and should 
recommend :them. He can also fill a few fern dishes with the bulbs, 
let them root in a coldhouse or frame and bring them into flower 
during Winter. 

The Fall Crocuses, which we can see covering the meadows of 
Europe in Autumn, are interesting. The bulbs wiU flower without 
being put into soil, sand or water and it doesn't hurt to have a 
few on display on your bulb counter. While some of these belong 
to the Crocus genus, others are really Colchicums. 



GROTONS 



333 



GROTONS 

With the varied forms and colorings of their leaves, there 
is absolutely nothing to equal the Grotons as decorative foliage 
plants. When you look at fifty different sorts side by side, not one 
resembUng the other and each more gorgeously colored than the 
next, you wonder how it is possible. One does not have to behold 
large specimens four or five feet tall in order to see them at their 
best; even the 23^-in. pot plants — particularly those of the small 
or narrow leeif varieties — are just masses of color and therefore most 
useful for the florist. 

Grotons are used today by the thousands, but more by the 
retail florist in the large city than by the retail grower out in the 
country. The latter isn't nearly as well acquainted with them as 
he should be. He wiU try to get along without them and, as a reason, 
claim that they are poor keepers. I grant that they are as house 
plants but that doesn't cut much figure. After all, the demand today 
around Christmas and, in fact, all through the Winter months and at 
Easter, is for basket arrangements rather than single specimen 
plants, and there is nothing to compare with Grotons for that pur- 
pose. They usuaUy last as long as the other contents of a basket 
and longer than a Cincinnati Begonia or a Poinsettia. 




Fig. 136.— A House of Drac^nas. The popular D. Massangeana with its broad 
white and green foliage occupies the center. D. terminalis or Cordyline ierminalis 
and other types are seen on the side benches. These plants are best left to the 
specialist; the small grower can better purchase strong stock as wanted. See text 

on page 355 



334 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




■"^sa 




'ft>ih^ 




Fig. 137.— Types op Crotons (By courtesy of the Robert Craig Co., Philadelphia). 
There is almost no end to the different varieties of Crotons, with their leaves of 
all shapes and a most varied array of colors. They are among the aost showy of 
all foUage plants and aromid the holidays frequently take the place of high-priced 
cut flowers in basket arrangements. We are just beginning to appreciate their 
value and usefulness. Those shown are, ahwe, Connecticut and Phyllis Craig; 
hehw, Janet Craig and -Irs. Robert Craig 



CROTONS 335 

Grotons for Christmas 

What you want is that the basket shall look well, shall look its 
best, on Christmas Day; that is what counts most. Pandanus 
Veitchii, Dracaenas and these Crotons are the plants to use in 
connection with others, especially during times when flowers and 
flowering plants are scarce or at their highest price level. Yet, 
even with flowers galore, these Crotons are just as desirable, for 
they are every bit as beautiful. While there is such a thing as try- 
ing to get^ along without them, you will, by using them, do more 
business, make more money and (as important as anything, perhaps) 
show your patrons who have seen them used one. way or another 
elsewhere, that you are uptodate. 

Diu-ing the Summer months Crotons should be used more 
freely for decorative purposes in the store and show house. They 
go well with your display of tuberous-rooted Begonias, fancy leaf 
Caladiums and Gloxinias. You can also use Crotons to advantage 
in filUng outdoor window boxes. In places a little too shady for 
flowers, what better material could you have to take their 
place than Grotons? Or you can bed them out. Plants can be 
safely set outdoors by the first of June, giving them a little protec- 
tion from the sun. If you wish, they can be left in the pots, but 
in this case bury the pots, getting the rims a couple of inches below 
the surface. If you can Uft the plants again during September, 
give them a shift and place them in a 55- or 60-deg. house, where they 
wiU come along all right. 

The leaves of Grotons are excellent for use in wreaths the same 
as Magnolia leaves. They provide a welcome change. 

Cultural Notes 

Heat and then some more heat is what Crotons require. Let 
them have a steady temperature of 65 or even 70 deg., plenty of 
sunlight, enough moisture and they wiU flourish. With the same 
temperature but a dry atmosphere, such as prevails in our homes, 
they soon drop their leaves. 

When you are once established and get a shipment of plants 
in November, if they haven't suffered in transit, they wiU show no 
bad effects if given a 60-deg. temperature or even less for a month 
or so, but they cannot stand it long. 

It would be folly for the retail grower to attempt to grow 
Crotons from cuttings and make them pay, when a bottom heat of 
80 deg. and a house of 70 deg. is required to do it. We have today 
specialists who grow them by the houseful. I suggest that those 
who like to handle them purchase in May or June what they want 
for Summer trade; then another lot in late Fall for their Christmas 
demands; and perhaps stiU another lot later on. 



336 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

CUP FLOWER 

See Nierembergia 

CUPHEA IGNEA (FIRECRACKER PLANT) 

As long as a porch box or vase isn't to be filled with just one 
variety of plant you can always use Cupheas to advantage along 
the edges. No matter what the color scheme, the Uttle reddish 
firecracker-hke flowers aren't showy enough to interfere with others 
in the arrangement. 

Cupheas are always in bloom. Each new leaf means another 
flower, and the graceful habit of the plants makes them just the 
thing to hang over the sides of a box, vase or hanging basket. Lift 
a few plants in the Fall, pot them up and carry them over Winter 
in a Carnation house; you can begin to propagate in February. 
They root as freely as German Ivy. Pot them up into 23^-in. pots _ 
and later into 3s, and if you can set them along the edge of a bench ' 
where they can hang over, so much the better. 

CURRANT, MOUNTAIN 

See Ribes 

GYCAS REVOLUTA (SAGO PALM) 

It used to be a common thing for the smaller florist, during 
early Summer, to start a few dozen Cycas stems in pots just about 
large enough to hold them, and therefrom produce a crop of fine 
leaves after awhile. We used to sell these plants, the same as 
palms or Rubber Plants, but we got away from it. If you go far 




Fig. 138. — Ten Good Cyclamen — Prize winners grown by the author. You can 
grow fine Cyclamen plants inside of twelve months, but if you want them in full 
bloom by early December, allow from sijcteen to eighteen months from sowing. 
One plant with perfect fohage and six to twelve flowers in December is worth four 

in January or February 



CYCAS, CYCLAMEN 337 

enough South or Southwest, you will find this Gycas planted out 
on the front lawn, all the way from small plants on up to specimens 
with stems six feet tall and over. Today the florist in parts of the 
country where they don't grow outdoors is most interested in them 
because of their leaves, which are used in a smaU state for wreaths 
or other floral designs and, when two feet long and over, in sprays. 
However these consist mainly of the prepared article. 

Once in awhfle we have a customer come in and demand the 
real freshly cut article. If you happen to have a large plant on hand 
in the psdm house it comes in handy at such a time. The fact 
is that these Cycas are most dignified plants for the palm house 
and it isn't a bad idea at all to have just a few on hand. 

When starting the stems you will get better results and obtain 
finer leaves if you can provide a little bottom heat for the pots they 
are in. Of course you wiU want a warm house and a little shade to 
protect the leaves which come out all at one time. 



CYCLAMEN 

Cyclamens are better grown today than ever before. They have always 
been great pot plants, but it is only during the past twenty years that 
American florists have made up their minds to grow tiiem better. 
Since the World War their popularity around Christmas has put them 
at the head of almost everything else, partly, perhaps, because of a 
lack of Azaleas and other stock from Europe, but to a far greater ex- 
tent because of the wonderful specimens grown, loaded down with 
greatly improved flowers. 

TT IS strange that twenty-five years ago although there were some 
*■ mighty fine greenhouse estabhshments and aU kinds of good 
growers in this country, and while Cyclamens were grown in enor- 
mous quantities all over Europe, with us their culture was in 
the hands of a very few men. Those who could do Cyclamens 
well were considered past masters in the art of gardening, but even 
then we had but few plants in flower for Christmas; a plant with 
six blossoms open in December was a good one. 

Today we find the plants being successfully grown from coast 
to coast. Everywhere we find successful growers and those who 
cannot grow the plants have no trouble in obtaining all they want of 
plants in fuU flower from November on. And, what is just as re- 
markable, we see good plants grown in all kinds of soil, from a finely 
sifted and carefuUy prepared mixture of leafmold, sand and a little 
manure, to a heavy loam. 

We are no longer so particular in regard to having the corm 
half way above the soU, as the writer was taught to plant it. For 
the past four years the biggest plants I have seen have had their 
corms buried fully one inch below the surface of the soil; this would 



338 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

have been considered absolutely wrong in former years. I learned 
the business where Cyclamens were made a specialty, have grown 
them by the thousands here and have shown blue ribbon stock, 
hut of late years we have found it advantageous to buy our require- 
ments. Such plants as we have seen in the past six or eight years— 
that is, specimens — were way ahead of anything I have ever seen 
here or abroad. 

Growing Plants from Seed 

It takes from sixteen to eighteen months to grow a Cyclamen. 
You want it at its best for Christmas, and you should have that 
date in mind if you grow them. No matter how you plan and figure 
and how fine your plants may be, you wiU always have some which 
won't be in flower by that time. Let them come in later, but 
remember that one plant in full bloom in December is worth two 
in January. 

If you grow only a few hundred plants sow the seeds in, rows 
in flats in any mellow, sandy soil. The seedlings come up rather 
irregularly, but in a month after sowing you may be able to carefully 
lift the first one; the sharp end of a wooden label is as good as 
anything to do this with. Have another flat ready, and transplant 
into it, in rows, allowing an inch or so between the plants. You 
will keep on removing seedlings from the seed flats for two months 
to come, but those first ready for transplanting wiU always be the 
strongest. The young plants in the flats can get along nicely in a 
house where your Primulas and Cinerarias do weU, for they want a 
bench shaded just a little, a lot of moisture and plenty of fresh air 
and ventilation. 

You cannot ever grow Cyclamens in a dry house, and if there 
is a secret about growing them at all, it is not to stunt the plants 
at any time when they are once under way; that is the whole thing 
in a nutsheU. You must find out for yourself what suits them best, 
so as to keep them growing uninterruptedly. Once stunted, the 
best grower will never be able to make anything out of them. On 
hot days wet the walk and below the benches. The plants will 
delight in that sort of atmosphere but it doesn't do to have it musty 
or sour under the benches. Keep things clean and sweet, but always 
moist during the first as well as the second Summer and Fall. 

Favorable Conditions for Cyclamen 

I claim that the atmospheric conditions surrounding a Cyclamen 
have far more to do with success or failure than the soil it happens 
to be in. Make use of the finest kind of leafmold and give proper 
drainage, an even temperature and careful watering. But if you don't 
provide the necessary moisture you will have trouble. A house 



CYCLAMEN 



339 




Fig. 139. — A Well-grown Cyclamen. This plant would easily, hide the top of 
a bushel basket. We thought we knew how to grow Cyclamen forty years ago — 

but we know better now 



where there is so much ventilation as to dry out everything on top 
and below the benches is no place for Cyclamens. 

Those who, in spite of using good soil and everything else, 
don't seem to make a success can usually trace their trouble to the 
lack of sufficient moisture during the plant's growing period. Don't 
take that to mean "Keep everything soaked," for that would be just 
as wrong as in giving a little protection against the hot sun during 
Summer to make the house pitch dark. All the shade Cyclamens 
want is just enough to prevent the leaves from wilting; spraying 
several times a day and a very httle shade will do that. 

The little plants should be potted up in late Fall or early Winter. 
As they won't do much during Winter they can remain in 23^-in. 
pots until late Spring. A good way is to stir up the surface of the 
soil in the pots several times during the Winter. When you notice 
the white roots getting busy around the inside of the pots it usually 
is time for a shift, even if there isn't much top growth to speak of. 
While Cyclamens grow steadily, it is during July, August and Sep- 
tember that they actually go ahead so that you can notice it; and 
that is the time they need the most encouragement. 



340 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Carrying Plants Over the Second Summer 

Plants which have been in 23^-in. pots up to March or so, and 
are shifted during April into Sj^-in. pots should have not less than 
a 50-deg, house; a couple of degrees over that won't hurt. On 
sunny days always spray them about noon. See to it that not only 
the soil in the pots but also that between the pots and the surface 
of the bench is always moist. From April on, and during Spring, 
the house where you grow good Geraniums, Fuchsias and Petunias 
makes a good Cyclamen house. With daily waterings in such a 
house, sunny days to warm things up to 70 deg., or even a little 
over, and just enough fire at night to prevent a damp, cold, stuffy 
atmosphere, you have the ideal growing conditions for Cyclamens. 
Then, with a porous soil in the pots and good drainage, it is just a 
matter of keeping up these same conditions right along. It will 
get warmer, of course, as you go on and no fire will be needed after 
awhile, but there is a difference between having a couple of hundred 
Cyclamens standing on a bench by themselves in a house with 
the other benches empty, and having them with other stock, all 
growing and being watered every day. 

I would just as soon have a 10-ft. sash house without concrete 
walks to carry the plants in during Summer, for that is the ideal 
place for growing things in hot weather, much as we appreciate, 
during the dark Winter months, the 50-ft. wide house and all 
that goes with it. A Cyclamen plant that, three weeks or so 




Fig- 1*0.— A Bbncm of Cyclamen. This is the way Cyclamen look when well 

treated, but it means constant care and watchfulness for from sixteen to eighteen 

months. Yet we find more florists than ever succeeding with them 



CYCLAMEN 341 

after having had a shift, doesn't need water every day during 
bright weather throughout July and August, is likely to be a sick 
plant or to lack proper drainage. 

Frame Culture 

You can also grow the plants successfully in frames outdoors 
during Summer. This means bringing them, after they have had 
a shift in June, into a frame. The pots may be set on ashes, cinders 
or torpedo sand; instead of placing sashes over the plants, you 
may place on top the usual 4- by 6-ft. lath shade frames. Some 
mighty fine plants are grown by this method. Here, again, it is proved 
that the plants standing on the moist ground, even if on a layer 
of cinders or sand, just delight in the moisture from below. It is 
that which makes for the good leaves that are so essential to a good 
Cyclamen. I think a well-grown Cyclamen with perfect leaves, 
one overlapping the other just a little, all beautifully marked, as 
is the case especially with the many white sorts, makes a most 
attractive plant even without flowers. The leaves are what make the 
plant and to get them is what you should strive for. 

To begin with, a little too much shade will cause a weak growth; 
and the same thing results when you crowd the plants during their 
period of growth. Spray the plants every day while in the frame 
and wet things down around the frames as well. A light spraying 
just at sundown to refresh the leaves after a hot July day is a 
good thing. 

Don't ever try frame culture unless you are sure the plants 
will get attention; with just a few on hand they are much more 
apt to be taken care of under glass. This is not to say that they are 
not every bit as well off outdoors, but you cannot put them there 
and let it go at that. 

Hotbeds for Cyclamen 

If you have the facilities and want to be "real good" to your 
young stock, prepare a mild hotbed in April and, after you have 
given the plants a shift, plunge them in it and don't give too much 
air for awhile. Such treatment gives a real boost to plants that are 
a little backward and you can repeat it after the next shift, say the 
end of May. At this time use not a real hotbed, but just a mild 
one. I have had excellent success with this treatment and others 
have had the same. After May, however, a hotbed would be 
out of place, so when giving the next shift place the plants in a frame 
without heat below. 



342 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Care of the Plants in Fall 

For the plants you want in flower for Christmas, the middle of 
September is as late as they should be shifted; a potbound plant 
will always flower earlier than one that isn't potbound. That is 
also a good time to have your plants get ready to set buds, and not 
be so much concerned about more growth. While the plants often 
do a lot of growing even up to November, you are more interested 
in seeing the buds push their way up toward and through the 
foliage. To encourage that, give full sunlight and provide no more 
moisture than is absolutely necessary to keep red spider away. 
Set the plants on pots, if you wish, in a 50- or 52-deg. house to let the 
air get around every plant and the sun get into it; this will in a way 
arrest' the growth and at the same time promote the development 
of the buds. On hot days a light spraying won't hurt. Toward 
December you can even give the plants a 55-deg. temperature to 
hustle things up a little, but don't make the mistake of forcing a 
lot of plants when there is no chance to ever get them into flower; 
keep those which are too late for Christmas in a 50-deg. house and 
let them take their time. 



Possible Troubles 

There is more crippled Cyclamen foUage due to green fly than 
to anything else. The pests settle near the base of the plants and 
you no sooner get rid of them and think all trouble is over, than 
you notice that the young leaves as they develop are aU crippled— 

the result of a former dose 
of green fly; and so it keeps 
on. Either spray or fumigate 
regularly, as long as you have 
the plants on hand, from the 
seedling stage to the time 
they are in flower. 

Red spider, as we all know, 
comes from a too-dry atmos- 
phere and will never occur if 
you pay attention up to the 
flowering stage and maintain 
enough moisture. Thrips is 
another nasty thing, but 
spraying with nicotine will 
keep it in check. We all 

„. ,„ ^ ^ have heard of "the mite" 

tig. 141. — Improved Cyclamen Blooms. „++„„i,;„„ ,.i„„+„ i„ot wlipn 

Some of the modern forms remind one of attacking plants JUSt When 

orchids more than anything else full of buds. Just what it 




CYCLAMEN, CYDONIA 343 

is I don't know; it has caused many a large grower to have a head- 
ache. The plants simply won't bloom; the buds get brown or dry 
up before they open. It was the same with Chrysanthemums 
years ago; we hardly knew what it was to have trouble aside from 
aphis or green fly, but the longer we are in the growing business, 
the longer becomes the list of insect pests and diseases we have to 
fight. 

Carrying Plants Over 

It isn't so very long ago that the dormant corms were imported 
from the other side, many florists starting them in the Fall and 
blooming them during the early Spring months. But we got away 
from that and the large grower no longer thinks of cEU'rying over 
either plants or corms for another year. However, the retail grower 
may do so, especially in the case of plants of a superior strain, 
which he would like to grow another year for seed ; or in the case of 
a lot of small plants left over at the end of the season. It is not at 
all necessary to even dry off the plants before starting them again. 

Let us suppose that by the end of February you have a nice 
batch of 3 3/^- or 4-in. pot plants, either through flowering or without 
buds; remove a few of the older, outside leaves, lift the plants out 
of the pots, carefully remove most of the soil, cut back some of the 
heavy roots and destroy the dead ones, and then repot. Plants 
that were in 5s can go iiito 4s, and those from 4s into 3s. Use a 
rather sandy soil to encourage root growth and keep^ the plants 
in a 52-deg. house. Some of the remaining leaves may get yellow 
and can be removed. 

In about four to five weeks, sometimes even before, you will 
notice new growth. During Spring and the following Summer 
treat the plants the same as the seedlings. Your large left-over 
plants can be handled the same way, only if they are full of leaves 
remove most of the old ones. You can also take 5-in. plants and 
shift them into 6s and let all the leaves stay on; some of them may 
come off during the Summer, but mighty fine specimens can be 
developed for another year from such stock. 

CYDONIA JAPONICA (JAPANESE QUINCE) 

Among the extra early flowering shrubs you should include 
the Japanese Quince. It is almost the very first to flower in Spring, 
and the larger a specimen becomes, the more showy it is, because of 
its bright scarlet (or, less commonly, pink) flowers. 

If you get from your nurseryman a few 2- to 3-ft. plants they 
will grow into money. You can either let them develop into large 
specimens which are easily transplanted no matter how large they 
may become, or you can divide the plants from time to time, as it 
is the nature of these flowering Quinces to send up suckers from 
below like Lilacs. 



344 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

CYPERUS ALTERNIFOLIUS (UMBRELLA PLANT) 

For a time we almost gave up growing Umbrella plants. Years 
ago they were found in every greenhouse and often were used for 
indoor window boxes, as single plants for house decoration and, in 
a small state, for the center feature of fern dishes; then other things 
took their place. Of late, however, we have been using them quite ~ 
a good deal during Summer. Our customers want them planted 
alongside of bird baths, or use them planted in bulb pans in the 
Lily pond, the natural pool, or the fountain. That is, after all, 
where these plants really belong. They are easily grown on in the 
greenhouse from cuttings; root these in December and January so 
as to have heavy 5- and 6-in. pot plants by June. Take an 8-in. 
fern dish, close the hole in the bottom with a cork, fill the dish with 
sand, then pour into it as much water as it will hold; remove the 
old leaves from the plants, leaving a 1-in. piece of stem to each 
leaf; trim the leaves themselves back to one inch in length and 
insert them into the sand so they are partly covered. They want 
a little bottom heat. You can also root such cuttings in the propa- 
gating bench, but you should keep them well soaked at all times; 
otherwise they dry up before making root. 




Fig. 142.— How TO Divide a Forced Gliimp op Dahua Tubers in early Spring 

i!^ il'l*™^ ™ °P®°' '® sliown here. If many plants are wanted, the tuhers 

should be started in the propagating bench and cuttings from the young growth 

rooted with a little bottom heat 



CYTISUS, DAHLIAS 345 

CYTISUS (GENISTA RACEMQSA) 

The Genistas when covered with golden-yellow pea-shaped flowers 
with a delicate odor, are hard to beat as show plants. But this is only 
in the cool greenhouse; in a hot, dry room their beauty is soon gone 
and the floor is covered with wilted blossoms inside of two or three days. 

Genistas are best when allowed to come along and flower in 
the coldhouse where the temperature is about 45 deg. During the 
Winter months they can stand this or even 40 deg. When in flower, 
they often are at Easter what the Cincinnati Begonias are arouiid 
Christmas — ^just a solid sheet of beautiful blossoms. But those 
who buy them really buy cut flowers, for there is no lasting to them. 

You can carry on the plants left over from Easter for another 
year. Repot them, shear them back a little, carry them along 
outdoors during Summer with their pots sunk into the ground up 
to the rim, bring them in again about October, keep them in a cold- 
house and you wiU have some fine large specimens loaded anew 
with flowers. ' 

Root cuttings in February with a little bottom heat, grow them 
on in pots, keep them shifted and, if desired, shear or pinch 
them up to December, when they should be left alone so as to 
develop graceful flowering wood; (For illustration see page 377.) 



DAHLIAS 

Where Dahlias do well one doesn't need much in the way of cultural 

directions; and where they don't do weU all the cultural notes in the 

country won't help you much. 

My experience with Dahlias has proved to me that while I 
have seen wonderful flowers and plants covered with them, both 
East and West, grown successfully by both trained gardeners and 
those who didn't know the first thing about growing them, plants 
grown from dormant tubers set out in the field and others grown 
from cuttings won't amount to anything five seasons out of six 
around Chicago. Whether we planted them in light sbfl or heavy, 
early or late, kept them wet or dry, aU we were able to teU about 
even the best novelties was what the labels alongside the plants said. 

This much is sure: that you must have a suitable cfimate if 
you want them to bloom. The finest Dahlias I have ever seen 
were in Oregon, Washington, Victoria, B. G. and San Mateo, 
Cafifornia. Out of those collections of hundreds of varieties it 
seemed as if every one was good. Throughout the East and 
even in parts of the Middle West as weU as the North, Dahhas 
are among the most showy of Summer and FaU flowers. Certain 
sorts do better in one place than another. Those who can grow them 



346 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 143. — Some op the Many Types of Dahlia. There is no end to the many 
fine varieties of Dahlias available. Wherever they do well there are few other, 
Summer-flowering plants that can equal them for showiness 

should always have a good show for their patrons to look at, should 
use them as cut flowers, and should push the sale of small plants or 
tubers during the Spring months. 

We have, today, many specialists growing old and new sorts 
for the trade; new and more gorgeous varieties are coming out 
each year. Keep on giving them a trial and grow the best sorts; 
those your customers haven't as yet secured. 



DAHLIA, DELPHINIUM 347 

Even those who are not very successful with DahUas should 
keep on investing a little each year in "new ones." In time we may 
come across the kinds which do well under conditions not favorable 
to older sorts. 

From Tubers and Seed 

Dahhas can be grown from the tubers or from seed. The 
tubers will overwinter nicely in the Potato cellar and if you want 
to get a lot of plants out of a few tubers place them in a 50-deg. 
house on a sunny bench with just a little bottom heat and you will 
soon have aU kinds of cuttings which will root easily. Pot them 
up afterward and, if you want to, you can again use the tops of 
the young plants for cuttings. 

Always try to keep your sorts properly labeled and don't carry 
along such as have proved worthless with you, no matter how well 
they may do elsewhere. It just means waste of time. Even if you 
only want the plants to sell during Spring, it would be wrong to 
sell customers in your locality sorts which don't do well with you. 

Sometimes we can grow the single sorts where the double ones 
won't thrive. In that case plant them, for to have plants fuU of 
blossoms is after aU far more important than to have a great big 
bush of some excellent variety with nothing on it but leaves and a 
few buds with inch long stems, opening the day before we usually 
get the first heavy frost. 

Seed sown in February or March will usually give you flower- 
ing plants the first season. With us, in a rather cool Summer with , 
a nice rainfall, we get a fair number of flowers, but during a hot, ' 
dry Summer they usually don't do much. For all of that we reaUze 
that Dahhas are an important class of plants, and where they do 
weU they should be grown. 

DAISY, AFRICAN ORANGE 

See Dimorphotheca 

DAISY, RLUE 

See Agathxa 

DAISY, ENGLISH 

See Bellis 

DATE PALM 

See Phcenix 

DELPHINIUM (HARDY LARKSPUR) 
It is only of late that the florist has begun to notice these grand peren- 
nials and appreciate their value as cut flowers. They are vnthout 
doubt, among the very best of all hardy plants and on account of their 
long flowering period, easy culture and splendid keeping quahties as 
cut flowers, they are not far from being considered ahead even of 

Peonies and Phlox. 



348 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




fig. 144. — Delphinium. This may well 
be considered the most valuable of aJl per- 
ennials — ^for the florist, at least. For cut 
flowers the Belladonna hybrids are the 
most useful 



The hybrid Delphiniums 
that we grow from seed, with 
their blue flowers of many 
shades, are among the most 
stately subjects for the peren- 
nial border. Growing up to 
five feet in height, they are 
not particular as to soil so long 
as it is not too heavily manured. 
As cut flowers they are hard to 
beat and, as with Belladonna, 
while the main crop will come 
in June or early July, if not 
allowed to go to seed the plants 
will flower until late in the 
Fall. The flower spikes of the 
young plants are usually only 
about eighteen inches long; 
used with Shasta Daisies they 
make a most pleasing arrange- 
ment. Those with greenhouses 
can also use the field-grown 
plants for forcing under glass. 
Besides all this, every retail 
grower should be able to dis- 
pose of great numbers of 
plants among his customers in 
Fall and Spring. 

Everybody likes Larkspur, 
especially the lighter shades 
and the turquoise blue, as found 
in the BeUadonnas. D. forrm- 
sum while a fine sort, is almost 
too deep a shade of blue; under 
artificial light it is rather dull. 



Growing On Stock 

For the florist, the best way to grow on a good stock of Del- 
phinium plants is from seed. Purchase either Belladonna or a 
good strain of mixed hybrids, or both. You will have good use for 
^11 the different shades and if there are any you especially like, there 
is nothing easier than to save your own seed. 

The best time to sow is in January, in flats. With fresh seed 
ninety per cent will germinate and make good plants. Grow in a 
50-deg. house and carry the plants along in the flats into which you 



DELPHINIUM 




Fig. 145. — Delphiniums in the Garden where their stateUness is steadily win- 
ning them increased popularity. In a few more years the florist will give them 
the attention they deserve for forcing under glass 



have transplanted the seedlings, or pot them up into S^^-in. pots; 
they are well worth the trouble. By the middle of May plant out 
into the field, allowing about ten inches between the plants and 
several feet between the rows. These early sown plants will nearly 
all flower the first Summer and you should have a good crop in 
Fall. They need but little protection over Winter and will be at 
their best the second Summer, coming into flower by the end of 
June or early July. It is always well to provide stakes for the plants 
as the flower spikes get too heavy and with a heavy rain or wind- 
storm are hkely to break off or fall over. Delphiniums are good 
for years, yet it is always best to sow a few each year and keep on 
pushing and selling the plants each Fall and Spring. 



Forcing Under Glass 

Lift some 2- or 3-year-old field plants in October, heel in in a 
coldframe and bring into a 45-deg. house about the early part of 
February. They are best off planted on a sohd bed» and you can 
do nothing with them in a hot house. The more slowly you allow 
them to come along, the better the results; and you can cut some 
grand spikes during May. For a large cut flower basket, take 
these Delphiniums, some long-stemmed America GladioU and 
some Clara Butt Tulips (all of which you can grow easily under 
glass and should have by that time), and the largest city florist 
cannot show anything finer. 



350 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Of course you can sow Delphiniums out in the open during 
Summer without a greenhouse, but you can obtain quicker results 
by starting them under glass as stated above. 

DEUTZIA 

Of most value to the florist among the fine flowering shrubs 
is Deutzia gracilis, for as a pot plant in bloom it is most desirable 
for Easter or early Spring flowering when its branches are loaded 
down with the small, white, bell-shaped flowers. 

For best results let your nurseryman supply you in Spring with 
small, field-grown stock which should be potted up into 5s or 6s and 




Fig. 146. — ^Deutzia gracilis. Deutzias grown on in pots during Summer force 

easily for Easter and when loaded with flowers and good foliage are most desirable. 

Failure is often the result of too severe forcing or of making use of field-grown 

stock potted up during Winter — which is useful only for May flowering 



DEUTZIA, DIANTHUS 



351 



grown in these pots during the Summer months. This will assure 
the best flowering wood. Let the plants get touched with frost in 
Fall, then bring them into a deep coldframe to stay there until the 
end of January. After that keep them in a 45-deg. house, moving 
them to warmer quarters by the end of February. They can, if 
necessary, stand a real hot house after that, but they are better 
off if not forced too hard. If wanted for Easter and found a little 
ahead of time, they can be placed in cooler quarters again. 

Wherever this Deutzia is hardy it should be included in the 
list of dearable flowering shrubs as should the other sorts such 
as Pride of Rochester, magnificata, venosa, Lemoinei, candidissima, 
crenata and Watered. These are among the most showy of early 
flowering shrubs, but unfortunately, they are not all hardy enough 
everywhere. They don't always winterkill, but may freeze down far 
enough to spoil the flowering wood. 



DIANTHUS (PINKS) 

Gf the hardy varieties of Dianthus, a number are of- value to 
the florist, and I might say that of these Sweet WiWiaim. {Dianthus 
barbatus) is the most valuable. For not only is it a showy plant in 
the hardy border, but also it can be used to good advantage as a 
cut flower. This is true especially of Newport Pink, since of this 
color there isn't an oversupply 
in May and June. The easiest 
way to propagate Dianthus is 
from seed sown in July or 
August; later on transplant 
the seedHngs six inches apart 
where they are to flower the 
following. Spring, or you can 
transplant stock in FaU or 
Spring. They don't all come 
true and if you should wish to 
improve your strain, select a 
few of the best plants when 
they are in flower and save 
them for seed. 

Of the border Pinks there 
are some fine double sorts 
which make showy, low border 
plants even when not in bloom. 
You wiU find that the best 
way to propagate them is by Fig. 147— Dianthus babbatus. Old- 
means of cuttings, rooted in fashioned Sweet William belongs m the 
,_,„..,"'. „ perennial border, but the retail grower 

early FaU inside, or m a frame ^^^ j^ig^ g^^^ jt for cut flowers and then 

and carried in a cool house. sell the plants 



1 


"f' 


m 






3H|^v^^pj/ jM^ 



352 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 148. — Hardy Pinks, Vamety Aulwoodii, which will give you all Summer 

large, double, fragrant flowers on 10- to 12-in. stems. A few good stock plants 

will furnish quantities of cuttings which root freely in Winter 



Among other so-called hardy Pinks we have the double and 
single clove-scented ones and the Pheasants' Eye type. They can 
be propagated by cuttings taken about September, or you can grow 
them from seed. 

You might try the new strain Alwoodii, which is a freer bloomer 
than any, flowering all Summer, more or less, like a Carnation. 

Among the annual sorts the so-called China and Indian Pinks 
are showy, but they are hardly of a great deal of importance to 
the florist. Still, a little seed may be sown with the rest of the 
annuals under glass in early Spring and the little plants grown 
on, in pots, for the bedding season. 



DIGENTRA SPEGTABILIS (BLEEDING HEART) 

With Maidenhair-like foliage similar to that of the Columbines 
and with graceful stems hanging fuU of little heart-shaped flowers, 
the Dicentras during early Summer are just as pretty in the herba- 
ceous border as can be. You should carry a stock of them along with 
all the other plants meant for the hardy border. You may have 
caU for only a very few each year, but it means just that much more 
business and when you once have a few plants and let them have 



DICENTRA, DICTAMNUS, DIDISCUS, DIERVILLA 353 

a spot where you can take care of them, you can every other year, 
divide the old stock and so steadily increase your supply. 

Plants for Forcing 

Two-year-old clumps of Bleeding Heart lifted in Fall can be 
gently forced and had in flower around Easter time without much 
trouble. When well done the retail grower will find good use for 
them. Heel them in in a frame and keep them there up to the end 
of January; Then bring them in, pot them up, and let them have a 
45-deg. house. With Easter coming around the first of April, they 
should be brought into a 55-deg. house by the latter part of February. 
They need a lot of water while in the pots. You can plant the left- 
overs outdoors again. 

DICTAMNUS FRAXINELLA (GAS PLANT) 

The Gas Plant — meaning the red form as well as the white — 
provides showy, hardy, flowering plants that can be used either 
in groups or borders. When planted in masses they are as showy 
as any flowering plant you have. When planted in a double row 
they make an ideal border for a walk, growing very uniform in 
height. But you will want to plant something else alongside of 
them as they do not flower all Summer. Sow seed in VI ay or early 
June in order to have good-sized plants to flower the foUowing year. 

DIDISCUS C.ERULEA (BLUE LACE FLOWER) 

If you wish to add to your assortment of flowers during the 
Spring months and please those patrons who are always wanting 
something different, you can do it by growing on a few plants of 
the so-caUed Blue Lace Flower (Didiscus cserulea). While not a 
showy flower nor of large size, it is nevertheless very attractive 
and when used in connection with Sweet Peas, Freesias or VaUey 
with Adiantum, it makes a beautiful centerpiece or corsage. If 
you want it to flower during April and May, sow seeds about the 
end of December or January in a house of 50 deg., transplant the 
seedlings later on into small pots, and in four or five weeks plant 
out on a bench, allowing about four inches between the plants in 
the rows and one foot between the rows. They will thrive in almost 
any soil and in a Carnation house temperature. 

DIERVILLA (WEIGELA) 

The Weigelas are among the dozen or so best flowering shrubs 
for the home grounds and you have to consider them. They are 
not only loaded with flowers during early Summer, but their foUage 
is always fresh and clean and some of the sorts (among them D. 



354 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

rosea, perhaps the best known one) have large leaves which turn 
to a iDeautiful bronze brown when touched by the first frost in Fall. 

Cat your plants back well each Spring and when they are 
through flowering you will admire their beautiful foliage. The 
deeply veined leaves in Fall take on a bronze shade and hang on 
as long as anything in the border. 

Some of the sorts sometimes winterkill a little with us, but 
we keep on recommending and planting them. Their many bell- 
shaped flowers range from white (D. Candida) to dark carmine (D. 
Eva Rathke) and appear from the end of May through June, in 
fact, there are scattered ones all Summer long. 

D. Abel Carriere is one of the newer hybrid sorts with large deep 
rose-colored flowers and Chameleon is another good early rose- 
pink sort. D. rosea nana compacta has pink flowers and beautifully 
variegated foliage and is of dwarf habit, but not as hardy as we would 
like to have it. 




Fig. 149. — Draclena amabius. We are blessed with many beautiful Dracaenas 

in a great variety of colorings. Practically all of them are useful as decorative 

plants during the Winter season, especially around Christmas time 



DIGITALIS, DIMORPHOTHEGA, DRAC.ENA 355 

DIGITALIS (FOXGLOVE) 

Foxgloves are biennials and as handsome as can be, especially 
when planted in large groups. If you sell perennials and plants for 
the hardy border you are bound to have call for Foxgloves and 
should grow on a good batch each year. 

Sow the seed about March. The seed is almost as small as 
that of Lobelia, and the seedlings remain almost at a standstill 
for the first month. Transplant later on into flats, allowing about 
Ij^ in. between them, and plant outdoors in May. 

They thrive in any soil, and make heavy plants by Fall. The 
best way to overwinter them, is to hft the plants and carry them 
into a coldframe, planting them out again as early as possible. 
They will come into flower by the end of June. You can also sow 
outdoors in April and get good results. 

DIMORPHOTHEGA (AFRICAN ORANGE DAISY) 
These little annuals are mostly grown for outdoor flowering 
and for that purpose are sown usually where they are to flower. 
D. aurantiaca hybrida produces flowers on fair-sized stems, ranging 
in colors from creamy white to deep orange, but the florist hardly 
ever grows them to any extent during Summer. However, they 
wfll give you something a little different and attract attention if 
sown during the latter part of February in rows on a solid bed in a 
45-deg. house, where they will begin to flower by early May. They 
last weU when cut and with stems 10 in. long can be used to 
good advantage for table decorations. Your customers are always 
ready to buy something out of the ordinary. 

DOGWOOD 

See Cornus 

DRAG^NA 

Perhaps the best known to the florist of all the many fine va- 
rieties of Dracaenas, is D. indivisa. While by no means to be com- 
pared with some of the others for beauty, it is used in great quan- 
tities each year, especially for the center of vases. Frequently 
we see smaUer ones also used in window boxes in connection with 
other foliage plants. 

There seems to be no other plant quite as graceful or which, 
as a foliage plant, can take the place of this Dracaena for the center 
of a vase during the Summer months; nor any which can be grown 
as cheaply. A lawn vase, whether a rustic affair or of iron or con- 
crete, no matter how well you fill it, is never complete without the 
Dracaena in the center of the arrangement. 

These Dracaenas are easily grown from seed, yet I doubt if it 
pays the retail grower who uses three to four dozen of 5- or 6-in. 



356 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

pot plants each Spring to take up his time with it. I believe he is 
ahead if he purchases some 3-in. or Sj/^-in. stock by the first of June, 
plants it in the field, lifts the plants by the middle of September 
and pots them up into 5s, places them in a house of 50 deg. over 
Winter, maybe gives them another shift in February, and has them 
ready for his Spring trade. Those who are in need of smaller plants 
for boxes or hanging baskets and who want to grow their own 
stock, can sow seed at almost any time during the year. 

Next, perhaps, to D. indivisa comes D. terminalis, the popular, 
oldtime, red leaf sort we use so extensively for Christmas, either as 
single plants or in plant arrangements for baskets. This sort, like 
many others, is usually propagated from canes. These are cut up 
into l3^-in. pieces and laid in sand in the propagating bench with 
about 70 deg. of bottom heat, where they make root and break. 
The retail grower with old plants on his place of varieties such as 
D. terminalis, D. fragrans and others, can cut the plants down, use 
the canes in this way and root the tops — and, most likely, new breaks 
will appear from the base of the cut down plant. 

Some Fine New Sorts 
Some very fine Dracaenas have been introduced of late years; 
these make ideal house plants, and to a great extent they have made 
up for the shortage of palms. Among many we might mention the 
following: D. Massangeana, with a large green leaf with creamy 
stripe along the center; D. Lord Wolseley, with a broader leaf than 
D. terminalis, but a fine shade of red; D. Lindenii, green with yellow 
border; and D. Warneckii, with a green and silver- white leaf. These 
are just a few of many, and the retail grower, around the hoHdays 
in particular, should always stock up well with a good number of 
them. If he is short on blooming plants, such stock will come in 
very handy and what isn't sold is a good asset later on; for Dra- 
caenas kept in a 55-deg. house will not spoil, but will keep on grow- 
ing in value. Most any of them in the smaller sizes are fine for made- 
up baskets. 

DUSTY MILLER 

See Centaurea 

EGHEVERIA SECUNDA GLAUCA (HEN AND CHICKENS) 
Echeverias really belong to the Cotyledons, of which there are 
a great many sorts, but most of them are of but little interest to 
the florist. We know C. secunda glauca best for we see it used most 
extensively in carpet beds in connection with Alternantheras, 
Santolinas and others; or in the cemetery in the same company. 
I don't know but what quite a few retail growers could use a few of 
all these plants to good advantage by making a little display of 
their own on their show grounds. In most cases a small border 



ECHEVERIA, EPIPHYLLUM, ERICA 357 

or bed would attract a great deal of attention and that always 
means effective advertising. Echeveria— by which name we know 
these plants best — forms perfect little rosettes, and if you don't 
want too many, they need but little heat over Winter and can be 
carried in almost any house, but must be kept on the dry side. 

ELEPHANT EAR 

See Caladium 

ENGLISH IVY 

See Hedera 

EPIPHYLLUM TRUNGATUM (GHRISTMAS GACTUS) 
In Europe and even in this country forty years ago, these Epi- 
phyllums were among the most highly thought of Christmas flower- 
ing plants. Poinsettias weren't as popular then as they are today; 
Begonias of the Cincinnati type were unknown; little effort was 
made to have Azaleas that early in the season and the same with 
Cyclamen, of which but very few were grown in this country par- 
ticularly. Chinese Primulas were among the Midwinter flowering 
stock, but no other plant could more safely be depended upon to be 
in fuU bloom Christmas week with a temperature around 50 deg. 
than the EpiphyUums. 

I don't suppose they will ever have another chance to become 
popular, yet I beUeve weU-grown plants in bud and bloom around 
Christmas would sell. The flat leaves, 1-in. long, wiU readily root 
in sand, and if you grow them in an airy house, in two years you will 
have heavy plants. Even the smallest of them will flower the first 
Winter. They make ideal house plants. 

EUPHORBIA JACQUINI^FLORA 

Of the favorites of long ago, this Euphorbia has come to the front 
again and forms a valuable cut flower during the Winter months. It can 
be grown entirely in pots, or cuttings rooted during Aprfl from young 
wood, may, after a turn in smaU pots, be benched during Summer. 
Like the Poinsettia, it needs a house of 60 deg. from Fall on, plenty 
of sun and good drainage. Long sprays of this Euphorbia with the 
stems covered with smaU, red flowers are especially useful in basket 
arrangements. 

ERICA (HEATHER) 
The time will come when every retail grower will have Ericas for sale 
from December on up to and after Easter and offer a good assortment 
of all the many remarkable varieties there are. The American public 
will then be as well acquainted with them and think as highly of them 
as they do and have done for ever so long in Europe. 

Whether or not the florist in the Middle West wiU ever be really 
successful with Ericas, matters little. There will be enough grown 
in the East and in the extreme West to go around; nor wiU we always 
have exorbitant express rates to make the shipping of the plants too 



358 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



expensive. The very fact 
that today a number of firms 
in the country are interested 
in the growing on of Ericas 
and that tens of thousands 
of them are sold (some of 
them in sections where years 
ago it was considered impos- 
sible to grow Ericas) is 
proof enough that we are 
making great headway. 

I don't expect the small- 
er retail grower to go into 
growing his own require- 
ments; we have passed that 
stage. But he wiU become 
interested in them the minute 
they are obtainable and can 
be handled at a profit. 

Flowering pot plants are 
the ones to be pushed for the 
Winter season. Long-stem- 
med Beauty Roses or extra 
fancy Laddie Carnations are 
the flowers to use for the 
elaborate dinner or the wed- 
ding, but for the lover of 
flowers, who wants to see 
them last awhile and cheer 
up the home, "flowers" will 
always mean pot plants, and 
here is where the Ericas 
come in. They are among 
the very best of keepers, and 
are liked by everybody, rich 
and poor. Almost every 
florist, no matter how small 
his greenhouses, can overwinter and flower Ericas. If he has a 
chance' to purchase his requirements during November, he can 
keep the plants in good shape in a coolhouse until they are m 
flower; that again should be an inducement for him to carry them. 

There is no use in the retail grower attempting to grow on 
plants from cuttings. With the length of time it takes to grow on 
a fair-sized plant, and the care it must have, he cannot afford to. As 
stated above, purchase your requirements in late Fall already 




Fig. 150. — ^Ebica Mblantheka. A sin- 
gle, well-flowered branch _ of this best- 
known Christmas-blooming Heather. 
Three-inch pot plants for baskets are 
as valuable as 8- or 10-in. specimens 



ERICA 



359 



grown. Erica melanthera is 
the ideal Christmas variety 
and you should always have 
a nice, well-balanced stock of 
it on hand, from small-sized 
ones for baskets to a few 
large specimens. All they 
need is a cool house and to 
be kept well watered. The 
plants may not show right 
away when suffering for 
want of sufficient moisture 
around the roots, but the 
first thing you know the little 
buds turn brown and dry 
up — and it is too late then 
to keep them wet. 

How TO Propagate Ericas 

The specialist propa- 
gates during Winter and 
early Spring, using the tops 
of the young growth. You 
want washed sand and a 
rather close atmosphere, but 
no bottom heat is necessary. 
It takes a couple of months 
to root the cuttings. Some 
growers practice pot cultiure 
during Summer, and others 
plant out in beds, making 
use of a mixture of leaf- 
mold, good mellow loam and 
sand. A little shade is nec- 
essary. If you grow from 
cuttings, it takes two and 
three years time to obtain 
good specimens. During Winter, give them a house of about 40 
deg., increasing the temperature, of course, for the plants that are 
wanted to flower. Old plants left over should be cut back well and 
if you can plant them outdoors during Summer, so much the 
better; then lift in October and pot up. 

What is of more interest to the lover of Ericas if he is a retail 
grower, however, is the fact that more plants than ever are being grown 
today in the United States and in many beautiful varieties besides 
E. melanthera. We actually note advertisements of firms quoting 




Fig. 151.— Erica WiLuaoKB ANA. One of 
the several beautiful species of which 
more are being grown each year. At 
this rate they will soon be as popular 
as they have long been in Europe 



360 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. -152,^— EiacA cuPBBSsiNA. You coiildn't ask 

for a more showy flowering pot plant than this 

Heather, yet it is only one of a long list of grand 

varieties that,you can select from 



such as President Garnot, 
King Edward, Codonodes 
Veitchii, WiUmoreana, 
Felix Faure, reger- 
minans ovata, persoluta 
and others; more men are 
getting interested in them 
right along and that looks 
mighty promising. 

ESCHSCHOLTZIA 
(CALIFORNIA POPPY) 
While for the florist 
the Eschscholtzias are 
anything but money- 
makers, they are never- 
theless most showy an- 
nuals, especially when 
planted in masses, just 
as we see them at their 
best in GaUfornia in 
Spring when the hills and 
roadsides present a glori- 
ous sight. I have seen 
them to good advantage 
sown among Oriental 



Poppies to take their place after the fohage had died down, and 
they can also be used for cut flowers, although for that purpose 
Hunnemannia, the Giant Tuhp Poppy, is really better; or even the 
Iceland Poppies which come almost in the same shades and colors 
and also hold their foUage all Summer. 



EUONYMUS 

Euonymus japonica is one of the sadly neglected plants. Every 
florist ought to have a good stock of both the green and the varigated 
forms. Like Aspidistra and Aucuba, Euonymus provides ideal plants 
for decorative purposes; it can stand all kinds of rough usage, and 
when a few years old and grown into pyramids in tubs, it gives 
desirable subjects that can be used like Boxwood or Bay Trees. 

The florists of the United States have never really endeavored 
to make money out of Euonymus, as those of Europe have. We 
found it easier to import the Boxwoods and Bay Trees than to 
bother about anything else. It was simpler up to a short time ago 
to let the other fellow do the growing; but as we go aloiig we gradu- 
ally take more notice and are beginning to look around for plants 



EUONYMUS 



361 



which can not only be used as substitutes for imported stock, but 
which can also be grown on here. v 



Growing on Specimen Stock ; 

The florist who wants to grow on a stock of Euonymus, cannot 
start out any better than by purchasing a batch of well estabhshed 
plants out of 4-in. or 5-in. pots. If he wishes to grow these on for 
specimens and gets the plants in Spring, I would suggest taking the 
tops off and rooting them indoors in a well-prepared, deeply culti- 
vated soil. Maybe you have an empty, cooled-off hotbed that will 
be just the thing, if there is enough soil on top of the manure. If 
not, put on a 6-in. or 8-in. layer and dig the whole bed over. Give 
the plants plenty of water during the Summer and they will make a 
nice growth; pinch off the long shoots to keep the tops in shape. 
You can lift the plants by the end of October and if you have a 

cold house, I wouldn't pot 

them, but would plant them 
close together on a solid bed. 
The following Spring give them 
a good root pruning (it won't 
hurt them a bit) and plant 
them out again. With three 
seasons of such handling, you 
will have the third Fall 5-ft. to 
6-ft. specimens that will require 
butter tubs. If you kept them 
pinched nicely, they will be 
bushy, shapely plants for which 
you will have aU kinds of good 
use. In the meantime the cut- 
tings you rooted during early 
Spring and some more of half- 
ripened wood taken in Fall, 
have grown into nice, bushy 
plants, some in 6-in. pots. 

The florist who has window 
boxes to fin (such as we often 
see displayed during the Sum- 
mer months on buildings in the 
business section of a town) and 
who therefore needs foliage 
plants, couldn't possibly have 
anything more appropriate than 
variegated Euonymus. They 
also make fine house plants if 
not kept too hot; or they can 




Fig 153.— Euonymus japonica lati- 
FOUA AUREA. TMs and other related 
forms deserve more attention. They can 
be used for decorating like Boxwoods and 
Laurels and can stand a great deal ot 
abuse 



362 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

be used for the filling of indoor boxes. For use in made-up baskets 
for Christmas, you can take the smaller sizes; or, if you have boxes 
to fill with conifers and evergreens, Euonymus will answer. Besides 
it will take the place of valuable palms or ferns for church or wed- 
ding decorations during the Winter months. E. japonica latifolia 
aurea, and E. j. aurea marginata, are fine variegated forms, but 
don't grow as rapidly as the other two. 

The Silver-leaved Euonymus {E. j. argentea), with fight green 
leaves, each with a white margin, makes a most desirable plant to 
be used in a Christmas arrangement. Small plants in 23^-in. pots 
are also most attractive and will come in handy for filling fern dishes. 
Half-ripened cuttings root easily with a little bottom heat dur- 
ing Winter, and nice little 2- or 2j^-in. plants can be grown on for 
the following Fall. 

Hardy Sorts for Outdoor Use 

Euonymus japonica, being evergreen in the South, is sometimes 
used there as a hedge plant. E. radicans, another evergreen, is 
fairly hardy even in northern sections; being a trailing or climbing 
shrub it is a good substitute for Ivy where the latter is not suc- 
cessful. 

The Strawberry Bush is a small tree or shrub much sought after 
for the smaUer home grounds. We find specimens in the border or 
planted singly on the lawn. What makes these shrubs so attrac- 
tive, is the scarlet pods that surround the pink fruits against the 
background of bright green fofiage. 

Euonymus alata is also an interesting shrub due to its branches 
being "winged" or covered with corky ridges. Euonymus europssa 
makes a fine, tall-growing shrub for the border and in Fall bears 
many seeds contained in deep pink-colored capsules. E. atropurpurea, 
the Burning Bush, is another strong-growing, hardy shrub, with bril- 
liant scarlet fruit capsules. 

EUPATORIUM RIPARIUM 

The Eupatoriums, while making up a class of plants with nearly 
400 species, are not of great interest to the average florist. Still 
there are three or four of them worthy of culture. Eupatoriam 
riparium grown from cuttings rooted in early Spring can be planted 
out and potted up again in Fall; if grown on in a cool house it will 
furnish useful cut flowers similar to those of Stevia. While the 
flowers are not as graceful, they come in handy and the retail 
grower can handle them to advantage in combination with other 
flowers. E. Fraseri and E. ageratoides are both good perennials for 
the border or to cut from, the fittle whitish flowers coming in dense 
heads. E. ccelestinum, with blue flo\^ers, is also hardy and flowers 
in late Summer. 

Some seedsmen and nurserymen list^ certain Eupaton- 



EUPATORIUM, EVERLASTING 



363 



ums as Conocliniums, Hebe- 
cliniums, and even as Ageratums. 
Most of the hardy species are 
natives of North America, but 
the tender species hail from 
South America, Mexico and 
the West Indies. 

If you once get established 
on your grounds a good number 
of Eupatoriums, you can divide 
a few clumps in early Fall and 
replant what you need both for 
cutting and to be sold as plants 
during Spring and FaU. Stock 
can also be grown on from seed, 
which when sown under glass 
in February will give you flow- 
ering plants the first Summer. 
Plants from seed sown outdoors 
during June, while they will 
grow into salable stock by Fall, 
will not bloom until the second 
season. 




Fig. 154. EuPATORIUM RIPAMUM Will 

flower by the end of February in a Carna- 
tion house temparature, the plants hav- 
ing been grown outdoors the previous 
Summer. E. Fraseri and E. ageratoides 
are perennials flowering outdoors in 
August 



EVERLASTING FLOWERS 
Everlastings, so-called because the flowers when in a dried state 
remain in an attractive condition for a long time, have of late years 
become very popular, and many acres are devoted to their culture 
along the Pacific coast where climatic conditions are almost ideal 
for their development. Yet most of them can be grown elsewhere — 
East, South and North — perhaps not with as great success, but well 
enough to make them pay. 

Quite a number of florists still hesitate to have anything to do 
with their culture, or even to handle the flowers. They don't con- 
sider them of enough value or think them not quite the proper thing 
to carry in connection with fresh flowers. Nevertheless, great 
quantities are used each year and as the demand for many varieties 
is on a steady increase it seems that every florist with a retail trade 
should pay attention to their culture. 

The following fist of ten varieties of plants suitable for cutting 
is only a short one, and there are many others that produce flowers 
that may be used in a dry state during the Winter months. How- 
ever, these ten wiU give any one a good assortment, and aU are of 
easiest culture. They aU are annuals with the exception of Statice 
latifolia and Gypsophila paniculata, which are perennials, but, to 
my mind, just as important as any as stock for the florist to cut from. 



FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



AcROCLiNiuM HOSEUM (page 245). 

Ammobium alatum (page 252). 

GoMPHRBNA GLOBOSA (Globe Ama- 
ranth) (page 388). 

Gypsophila paniculata (Baby s 
Breath) (page 390), 



Hblichrysum bracteatum (page 394.). 
Rhodanthb atrosanguinea (page 492). 
Staticb latifolia (page 525). 
Statice sinuata (page 525). 
Staticb Suworowii (page 525). 
Xbranthemum annuum (page 553). 



FALSE DRAGON HEAD 

See Physostegia 

FAN PALM 
See Latania 

FERNS 

Next to flowering pot plants, fems in pots are of most importance to 
the florist. He has use for them every day in the year, and especially 
aromid the hoUdays, when, no matter how grand his display of flower- 
ing plants may be, some will want a Fern. With all the fine new sorts 
which have evolved from the old Sword Fern {Nephrolepis exaltata), 
it usually isn't hard to please all tastes, yet the "Bostons" are as popu- 
lar as ever, largely on account of their famous keeping qualities. 
If there is any one sort of more value than all the rest, it is that 
which we know as the Boston Fern. We use the plants in one 




Fig. 165.— Nephrolepis elegantissima. One of a long list of Nephrolepis 
sports that we grow today— and to which new names are being added every day 



FERNS 



365 



way or another from 2}/2- or 3-in. stock on up to specimens in 8- and 
10-in. containers, in basket arrangements for the hohdays, in out- 
door and indoor window boxes, and in hanging baskets. 

For those with limited space, it is every bit as well to obtain 
what they need from the wholesale grower or to make use of empty 
benches during the Summer 
months, purchasing small stock 
in Spring and planting it out. 
Three-inch stock benched after 
the bedding stock is gone will 
grow by Fall into nice, bushy, 
5- and 6-in. plants, which can 
be potted up separately; or the 
smaller plants can be used for 
made-up pans. 

You can grow such ferns in 
almost any soil so long as it is 
well drained. They want a lot 
of water and should have a 
httle shade. They can also be 
grown in a frame outdoors with 
good results; in fact, they will 
do better there than in a dry 
house. All ferns love more or 
less moisture and while they 
can stand almost any amount 
of heat on top, they object to 
warm feet. The Bostons are no 
exception; give them a httle 
shade, and they will make great 
headway. 

During the Winter months 
they should have a house not 
under 55 deg. (a little over that 
point won't hurt), well drained 
pots and a porous soil. They 
can stand watering almost every 
day, but in a sour soil they soon 
go to pieces. 

The man who has only one 
hundred or so of these ferns on 
hand at a time and has to have 
them in a house with a lot of 
other mixed plants, should not 
expect to get the same results 




Fig. 156. — ^Tabi^ oh Dish Ferns is the 
name given to »- or 2>^-in. stock of 
Pteris, Asplenium,. Aspidium, etc., mostly 
used for filling fern dishes 



366 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 157.— A Boston Fern. The "Boston" which replaced the Sword Fern 
(Nephrolepis exaliaia) over twenty years ago has held first place ever since. New 
sports come and go, but the Boston stays and hundreds of thousands are grown 
in all sections of the country. Yet there are times each year when certain sizes 

are hard to get 



as those who can devote whole houses to them. He will make more 
money purchasing what he needs and pushing the selling end. 

Bostons once infected with scale or white fly even though cured 
of their troubles, plants subjected to a house too dry, too shady or 
not warm enough, or those in pots with poor drainage, soon take 
on a sickly look. This holds good with aU varieties, not only the 
Bostons, but the many beautiful sports, such as Nephrolepis 
elegantissima, N. Smithii, N. Harrisii, N. Roosevelt, N. Teddy Jr., 
N. Whitmanii, N. Verona, N. Wanamaker, N. Macawii, N. Scottii 
(or the crested form of Teddy Jr.) and N. Victoria. 

Table Ferns 

Under table ferns the florist classes such varieties as are mostly 
used in the filUng of fern dishes. As with Asparagus plumosus and 
A. nanus, so with these table ferns — every retail grower should al- 
ways carry a gpod stock of them from early Fall until late Spring. 



FERNS 



367 



As soon as the first good frost has finished the flowers in the 
garden, the first empty dishes to be filled with small ferns stptrt to 
come in, and they will keep on coming all Winter long until away 
after Easter. For a fern dish always makes an attractive decora- 
tion for the center of the dining room table. While some of our 
good patrons will make such a dish last all Winter, these are the 
exception; usually from six to eight weeks finishes the best of 
them, and that means an order to refill with new plants. 

These ferns, to be most useful, should by October be in 2- or 
23^-in. pots. As such they are also most useful during the Christ- 
mas rush for the fiUing of small baskets in connection with Roman 
Hyacinths, Primroses and other flowering stock. If kept shifted, 
practically all the varieties we use will grow into fine large speci- 
mens in 5- and 6-in. pots by the following Fall. Cyrtomium Roch- 
fordianum, known as the Holly Fern, is a good example of this sort 
of stock. 




Fig. 158.— A Palm and Febn Arrangement. Around Christmas especially, 
made-up plant arrangements are much in demand. A 5-m. Kentia or Areca sur- 
rounded by Boston Ferns may be preferred by many to a tender Begoma or short- 
lived Poinsettia pan 



368 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



Cultural Notes on Table Ferns 

If you want to grow these ferns from seed or spores, treat them 
the same as Adiantum cuneatum. But why care for the seed flats 
or pans and the little seedlings for about six months when you can 
buy from the fern specialist heavy transplanted stock ready for 2- 
or %)4-\n. pots for something Uke $10 per 1000? If you order 
such stock to arrive about the first part of July and, after potting 
it, place the plants on a shaded bench, they all will grow into fine 
plants by the time you are ready to fill the first dish. During Sum- 
mere there isn't a florist who cannot provide facilities to grow these 
ferns. If your houses cannot be kept at 60 deg., instead of making 
later plantings of stock to follow the first batch, you may find it 
cheaper to buy ready grown plants such as you will want after 
Christmas. 

As to varieties suitable for fern dishes, if you leave the choice 
to the firm you buy from, you wiU usually get from six to ten sorts 
best suited for the purpose. Of course, the selection must take into 
account the nature of your trade. While it is desirable to have 

as varied an assortment as 
possible, you should avoid 
varieties that are too delicate 
to give satisfaction under 
average house conditions. 

Hardy Ferns 
(See also page 206) 

During Spring there is al- 
ways call for hardy ferns for 
outdoor planting in locations 
that may be a little too shady 
for flowers. Or they may 
be wanted for the rockery 
or some shady spot near the 
water pool. Almost any of 
these ferns will thrive in the 
shade; in fact, they require 
shade in order to do well. 
Among the better known 
ones are the Aspleniums or 
Spleenworts; Aspidium acros- 
tichoides, the Christmas Fern; 
Adiantum pedatum, the 
Maidenhair Fern; Onoclea 
Struthiopteris, the Ostrich 
Fern; and Aspidium Goldie- 
anum, Goldie's Wood Fern. 




Fig. 159.— Ficus ELASTicA. The Rubber 
Plant is and long has been a universal 
tavonte wherever decorative foliage plants 
are used. There are few florists' establish- 
ments where we don't find it— even though 
sometimes it may be much neglected 



FERNS, FICUS 



369 



You can purchase your requirements in early Spring from the 
specialist and what you have left over plant out on your own grounds. 
They will be good for another year. 

FEVERFEW 

See Matricaria 

FICUS ELASTICA (RUBBER PLANT) 

The Rubber Plant has always been considered one of the best 
of the decorative house plants, mainly on account of its excellent 
keeping quaUties. Some of your customers may keep them for years 
in the bay window until they finally outgrow their quarters and you 
are asked whether you would not like to buy them back. 

The retail grower doesn't sell as many as in former years, but 
during the past few years, with the shortage of palms, they have 
again come to the front. Plants 2 to 3 ft. in height in 5- and 6-in. 
pots, with stem or stems covered with large, shiny, dark green 
leaves, can often be sold when a palm is too expensive. We also 
have noticed them of late years in among the foUage plants in city 
window boxes where they stand sun, heat and dust about as well 
as EngUsh Ivy. 

The time to root cuttings 
of this variety is during the 
Winter months. Do it where 
you can have bottom heat of 
80 deg. with a temporary 
frame over the bench to create 
a close atmosphere. Make 
cuttings with one leaf, cut the 
stem below the joint and pot 
up into 23^-in. pots filled with 
very sandy soil. Place a stake 
10 in. long in each pot, loosely 
roll the leaf around the stake 
and tie it with raffia. After 
that it is a matter of keeping 
the pots moist at all times. A 
good way is to fill in around 
them up to the rim with sand 
and moss, keep a steady bot- 
tom heat, and spray the leaves 
each day with warm water, 
placing a sash or piece of glass pig. I6O.— Ficuspandubata. This species, 
over the frame and leaving whUe a grand decorative plant for the home 
iust a crack for air Another «"d dififering but slightly f rom F. elastica 
JUSl a craCK lor air. Anoiner j^ cultural requirements, finds it harder to 
way is to root the tops with win recognition by the smaller florist 




370 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

three or four leaves, tying these up also. But don't attempt to root 
leaf cuttings from hardwood. 

Still another way, often advisable on large plants with a num- 
ber of branches, is to root 2-ft.-long tips right on the plant. Make a 
cut just below a joint, half way through the stem and then upward 
for about 2 in. Where you stop with the knife, place a toothpick 
crosswise to keep the cut open, then fill in and around the cut with 
Sphagnum moss so as to form a ball the size of your fist when tied 
with thin wire. In a temperature of 70 deg., if you keep the moss 
wet at all times, you will soon notice roots pushing their way through. 
Wait a few more days, then remove the top, carefully unwind or cut 
off the wire, and pot the top up. Keep it shaded in a warm house 
and you will soon see the leaves straightening out and red tops 
appearing— always a sign of new growth. 

Ficus repens is a fine climber under glass on waUs, even those of 
wood, but it is not of much use to the florist. 

Ficus pandurata is a beautiful foliage plant with large leaves, 
used extensively by the florist. It is a good plant to carry in the 
show house, but its propagation and growing on are best left to the 
specialist. 

FIR, COLORADO WHITE 
See Abies 

FIRECRACKER PLANT 

See Cuphea 

FORGET-ME-NOT 

See Myosotis 

FORSYTHIA (GOLDEN BELL) 

With the lawns full of Dandelions in bloom, you may have 
some of your customers object to Forsythias which, in early Spring, 
have their stems loaded with golden-yellow, bell-shaped flowers be- 
fore their leaves appear. Usually, however, these fine shrubs are 
wanted in every collection. We haven't many yellow-flowering sorts, 
and siu'ely none as effective as the Forsythia. 

The one we usually plant and the leader as far as flowering is 
concerned is F. viridissima, of upright habit; but for gracefulness 
and places where you can give the plants all the room they want 
F. suspensa is the more beautiful. It is a small plant and not as 
free flowering, perhaps, as the other; but with its drooping habit 
and fine leaves it makes an ideal foliage shrub and is especiaUy de- 
sirable when the first light frost turns the long pointed leaves a 
beautiful brown. 

FOUNTAIN GRASS 

See Ornamental Grasses 



FREESIAS 371 

FOXGLOVE 

See Digitalis 

FREESIAS 

npHERE is hardly any other flower that the florist, particularly 
* the retafl grower, handles during the Winter and early Spring 
months as useful as the Freesia. Whether you have to fifl an 
order for a bride's shower bouquet, a corsage, a funeral design, a 
spray, a basket for the table or a box to go to the sick room, Freesias 
are most appropriate; nor can you mention any flower that they 
won't go with. They can be had in flower from Christmas to Easter, 
and among the crops it pays even the small grower to handle, they 
hold first place. 

Your patrons may object to Paperwhite Narcissi, but I have 
to find one yet who didn't like Freesias. Their beautiful, sweet- 
scented flowers will last for days in water, especially if cut when only 
partly open. 

Most retail growers who force Paperwhites and Roman Hya- 
cinths are usually pretty well through with them by Christmas and 
there is a shortage of bulb stock from that time until perhaps the 
end of January. It is during this period that Freesias pay best. 
Their culture is as simple as can be, nor do they want a house over 
50 deg. at any time. This fact alone should cause them to be far 
more appreciated than they are at present. While there are men 
who have made their culture a specialty for many years and grow 
them on a large scale, the average florist, who caters to a retail 
trade and who could use them to best advantage for practically five 
months in the year, usuaUy plants just a few bulbs, say about 
September or October, and lets it go at that. 

With Freesias, as with so many other of the florist's flowers, 
great improvements have been made. While we had practically 
only one sort in all the years we depended on the other side for our 
supply of bulbs, as soon as California took up Freesia growing we 
graduaUy broke away from the old yellow-throated sort. Fischer 
and others have since given us some wonderful hybrids, which no 
doubt, more than anything else, will help to make the florist recog- 
nize and appreciate the flowers to the extent they deserve. 

For December and Early January Flowering 

Experience has taught us that for the extra early flowering of 
Freesias nothing but the largest bulbs should be used. No mat- 
ter how early you plant small bulbs nor how you treat them, they 
are apt to run into leaves, and while a few may bloom, nine-tenths 
won't. However, these same bulbs used for late forcing wiU most 
likely all flower. 



372 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 161. — Fheesias._ American-grown Freesias and also improved itew hybrids 
of American origin are now proving a blessing to thousands of florists 



By the average retail grower Freesias are usually considered one 
of the many crops to follow Chrysanthemums, and he plants them— 
say five three-fourths size bulbs in a 4-in. pot — by the middle or 
end of August. The plants will be about 4 in. in height by the time 
the early Chrysanthemums are through, and if planted by the end 
of October they will start to flower by Christmas. 

Use good soil and plant deep enough to just cover the bulbs, 
allowing as much space between them as possible. Put the pots in 
a coldframe, over which place shade frames, not so much to keep them 
dark as to prevent the sun from heating up the soil in the pots and 
drying the bulbs out. Keep evenly moist but not wet. By the 
middle of September their grass-like foliage will appear and then 
they are better off without shade. If you don't want to bring them 
under glass by early October, watch out for frost, and if necessary, 
cover the frames with sashes. Plant in the benches in rows 1 ft. 
apart; by making a trench you can place the plants close together 
in the row and 1 in. or so lower than they were in the pots. Later 
on support the plants the same as you would Carnations, with wire 
lengthwise and twine crosswise. Freesias, when once in a growing 
state, need plenty of water. To allow them to dry out means yellow 



FREESIAS 373 

or brown tips and perhaps blind buds later on. Provide good 
drainage, as otherwise they are likely to suffer from over-watering. 
For those who only wish to grow a few early ones, bulb pans 
may be used instead of a bench. Six-inch pans are the handiest, 
allowing about 2 in. of space between the bulbs. The bulbs can 
also be planted at once in the bench, but for the early ones this 
really means a waste of bench, space, as they will do just as well in 
the pots and you may as well harvest your crops of early 'Mums first. 

The Midseason Freesia Crops 

Bulbs scheduled to flower from the end of January to early 
April may be planted from October on until the end of November, 
and can also be started into growth in pots and later planted out; 
or you can use bulb pans or plant in 3-in. flats in which they are to 
flower. For this purpose five-eighths to three-fourths size bulbs are 
perhaps the best. Select the larger-sized bulbs for January and 
FebruEU-y, and the smaller ones for March and April flowering. 

For Easter and Late Flowering 

With Easter coming early in April, bulbs of Freesias should be 
planted about the middle of December. In using J^-in. bulbs a good 
way is to plant them in 6-in. pans, allowing not more than 1 in. of 
space between them and placing the pans underneath a Violet or 
coldhouse bench. By the middle of February bring into a Carna- 
tion house, place on a sunny bench and they will start to flower 
by the end of March or early April. This will give you short, stocky 
plants, hardly in need of supports, that every florist around Easter 
can dispose of to good advantage. Another way, if you happen 
to have a lot of bulbs on hand by the middle of December, is to 
plant them in a solid bed in rows where even bulbs a little below 
the J^-in. size will flower if you let them come along slowly. 

Saving Bulbs 

There are always, especially from the smaller-sized bulbs, 
plants which fail to flower but which, if properly handled, wiU bloom 
the foUowing year, and there are growers who save their bulbs from 
year to year, or at least a part of them, and purchase the rest. 
In the case of plants which have been grown in pots or pans, after 
they are through flowering, it is just a matter of giving them less 
and less water and so gradually ripening them. Later on take the 
bulbs out of the soil, select the large ones and throw away the smaU 
ones. With plants which were grown in a bench, however, a Httle 
more care has to be taken. Lift the plants, soil and aU, and carefuUy 
place below the bench. The less you disturb the roots and the more 
soil you leave around the bulbs the better, for you want the tops 



374 FRITZ BAHR:S COMMERCIAL'FLORICULTURE 




to dry off slowly. This may 
necessitate a little watering 
once in awhile, just to keep the 
soil moist. After two months or 
so, remove the bulbs and store 
them away in a cool, dry place 
until they are again wanted 
for planting. Never dig up 
plants in Midwinter and shake 
them out the same as you 
would Gladioli or Onions, but 
dry the plants off gradually 
with the soil around them. 

FUCHSIA 

You can't ask for a more showy 
plant than a Fuchsia when load- 
ed down with its bell-shaped 
flowers and numberless buds. 
There are so many beautiful 
varieties to select from and yet, 
coming into flower mostly dur- 
ing early Spring and Summer, 
they are not such fine money 
makers for tiie florist, after all. 

I am sure Fuchsias are among the plants which are grown by 
quite a few florists not for what they bring in in the form of dollars, 
but just because it doesn't seem right not to have a few of them 
around coming into flower in Spring. Only once in awhile do we 
sell a plant separately, but rather we make use of them in filling 
window boxes for shady locations or use them to plant a bed or 
border not quite sunny enough for Geraniums. Those who can get 
plants in full bloom by Easter are bound to find a sale for them, 
especially when from three to five plants are used in a made-up pan. 

The trailing Fuchsias are excellent for hanging baskets; in fact, 
I don't know of anything showier; but it does require careful atten- 
tion to keep the plants in good shape. 

Cultural Notes 

You can propagate Fuchsias almost any time, but we usually 
take cuttings from stock plants carried in pots, about January. 
They root freely with a little bottom heat and for best results 
the young plants should be kept moving right along. Keep them 
shifted, use good soil and provide drainage; they enjoy a rather 
moist atmosphere and most varieties don't need pinching, unless 
you want to secure more cuttings. 



Fig. 162. — Fifty Well-grown Freesias 
on long, strong stems, the result of giving 
the plants plenty of sp^ace in a house a little 
below 50 deg. The bulbs were planted 
Aug. 1 and the flowers cut Feb. 13. Mignon- 
ette was grown between the rows for 
Christmas 



FUCHSIA, FUNKIA 375 

You may also propagate in April, grow the plants all Summer 
in pots, let them dry off by October, store them away under a bench 
in a dormant state until the end of December and then start them 
into growth again. Fuchsias can be grown into large plants! If 
you ever go to San Francisco, be sure to visit the little beauty 
spot back of the superintendent's office at Golden Gate Park where 
there are planted out some Fuchsias 10 to 12 ft. in height. Once 
in awhile on private places we see F. speciosa planted out in a soKd 
bed and grown into a standard well worth a long trip to see when in 
full bloom. 

Fbame Culture 

No plant more than the Fuchsia enjoys a hotbed. Here it can 
be grown to perfection. Provide one with plenty of headroom, 
and when you give the plants their final shift into 4s or 5s have the 
bed ready. Plunge the pots in it up to their rims and maintain a 
close atmosphere. Allow enough room between them for develop- 
ment, and, with the bottom heat and the moisture, you will obtain 
some wonderful plants better than anything you can ever hope to 
grow in a house. 

Varieties of Fuchsias 

Trailing Queen is what you want for your hanging baskets, 
and for this purpose grow the plants on in pots up to the middle 
of April and then plant from five to seven in a 12-in. wire basket. 
They don't need to be hung up until the branches begin to droop 
over the sides. 

Black Prince is a single variety, used by the florist more ex- 
tensively, perhaps, than any other on account of its fine, upright habit, 
good foliage, and early flowering. Its color is carmine. F. speciosa 
has white sepals and an orange corolla, making it one of the most 
attractive of the single varieties and a particularly fine specimen 
plant. Among the double ones, the best known are Storm King, 
with scarlet sepals and white corolla ; President Garnot, crimson and 
mauve; and Phenomenal, which, as the name indicates, is of enormous 
size. There are many other fine sorts, both single and double. Rose of 
Castile and Little Beauty are two of them. 

FUNKIA (PLANTAIN LILY) 

This is an old garden favorite and it is well to have a small 
stock on hand to take divisions from in case a customer wants a 
few plants; but it is the variegated form which interests the florist 
most. Field grown plants may be lifted, carried in a coldframe and 
potted up about February. They will in a few weeks make most 
attractive pot plants, and be just the thing for the show house. 
If you have enough of them, in say, 5-in, pots, you can create a 



376 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

fine effect by bordering your bench of Easter stock with them. 
While the foliage of the variegated Funkias is beautiful even out- 
doors when used as a border, it is more so on the plants you force 
in pots under glass where they are in an even temperature and not 
exposed to wind and weather. If you plant out a batch of plants 
you will be able in a couple of years to divide the plants the same 
as you would Iris or Peonies and have all the stock you want. 



GAILLARDIA GRANDIFLORA 

The perennial GaiUardias are among the best dozen for cut 
flowers. They grow about 2 ft. in height, have, when at their best, 
15-in. stems tipped with large, golden-yellow flowers with brown 
centers, and, when cut, are excellent keepers. While they do their 
best in a rich soil, they will, when well taken care of, give you 
good results even in poor soil and during a hot, dry Summer when 
almost everything else is showing its bad effects. Grow on the 
same as Coreopsis, but in the greenhouse seed may be sown in 
early February and plants can be had in flower from July on up 
to November. For a beautiful basket arrangement, combine 
Delphinium, Shasta Daisies and GaiUardias. 

Few perennials are more 
hardy or need less protection, 
but you will find it pays to sow 
a little seed each year; don't 
depend on the old plants after 
the second season. 

There is also a good strain 
of annual GaiUardias, fine for 
cutting. Treat the same as 
CaUiopsis, by sowing outdoors 
in rows, making several sow- 
ings for early and late flowers. 

GARDENIA 
JASMINOIDES 

This beautiful, sweet-scent- 
ed, waxy flower belongs to the 
Southland, whence we receive 
many — sometimes, in fact, too 
many at once. However, the 
specialist in the colder sec- 
tions of the country who grows 
them in benches and is able to 
bring his flowers in during the 




Fig. 163. — Gaillardia grajvdifloha, a 
perennial that will thrive in almost any 
soil, stand the hottest,' driest Summer and 
keep right on blooming. It provides splendid 
cut flowers and is a good plant for the 
hardy border 



GARDENIA, GERANIUMS 377 




Fig. 164. — GEaxiSTAS in 4J^-in. Pots. Close shearing does not always improve 
Genistas, as many patrons prefer plants with a graceful habit like that shown here, 

(See Gytisus, page 345.) 

Midwinter months, finds ready sale for them, for they are much in 
demand for use in corsage bouquets. 

For the retail grower, Gardenias are hardly to be considered 
of great importance. To grow them successfully, you must give 
them a house by themselves. Young stock propagated during 
Winter is planted in benches with strong bottom heat, and kept 
pushed along with a night temperature of 60 deg. Whenever you 
see yellow leaves, they are always due to poor root action, mostly 
caused by poor drainage or by keeping the plants too cool. 

If the smaller grower wants to have just a few flowers and is 
wiUing to wait for them to flower in February or a little later, he 
can carry a few plants in pots. 

GAS PLANT 
See Dictamnus 

GENISTA RACEMOSA 

See Cytisus and Fig. 164, above. 

GERANIUMS 

The reason Geraniums have always been considered the most popular 
of all bedding plants is because people are successful with them almost 
everywhere. North, South, East or West, they are in flower from Spnng 
until Fall, and keep on all Winter in sections where they don't get 
killed by frost. They can stand the driest Summer if they have just 
a little cultivation, and they will do well in light or heavy soU. Why 
shouldn't they be popular? 
Geraniums are the backbone of your bedding stock. You 
may have a customer change from Geraniums to something else— 
but usually he or she comes back to Geraniums again, especially if 



378 



FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



the best of attention is not 
given to the beds in Summer. 
At present the pink shades, 
particularly Mrs. E. G. Hill 
and Poitevine, have the call, 
but you want others — among 
them S. A. Nutt, considered 
by "Uncle John" Thorpe the 
best red more than forty years 
ago. This variety is still at 
the head. You will also want 
a good white. Suppose you 
grow 5000 plants; I would 
suggest 3000 pink of two or 
three sorts, 1000 red of two 
sorts, 500 white of one sort, 
and 500 mixed to please those 
who come in to purchase a 
dozen plants of as many differ- 
ent varieties. Of course the 
man near the cemetery 
wouldn't be satisfied with such 
an assortment; no doubt he 
would include many more 
white ones. 




Fig. 165. — The Gbraisiium Mrs. Geo. E, 
Buxton. A bushy 5-in. Geranium during 
the early Spring, especially around Easter, 
when carrying half a dozen large trusses 
of flowers, will always find admirers. The 
color is of nearly as great importance as 
compact habit, good foliage and plenty of 
buds and flowers 



To grow Geraniums successfully you want a house of 50 deg. 
over Winter, a rather stiff loam, good drainage and plenty of sun. 
You can take cuttings in September from plants grown outdoors, 
but there is then always more or less loss, especially if we have a 
wet season which causes soft growth. A better way is to grow on a 
few plants planted out on a bench and keep on taking cuttings from 
them all Winter. Such cuttings if removed with three or four eyes 
can be potted up at once into 2s or 23^s in a sandy soil and will 
soon root; or, if desired, they can be placed in the propagating bench. 
Here, especially during Winter, a Uttle bottom heat wiU help mat- 
ters. Hardly ever do such cuttings require shade. 

Growing Good Four-Inch Stock 

To grow good 4-in. Geraniums, you should root the cuttings 
from September on up to January and carry them in 2j^s. The 
earUer propagated ones should have a shift into Sj^s by the first of 
February and if in good growing condition, may have their tops 
removed to be used as new cuttings. But don't do this unless 
you have three or four eyes left on the plant for new breaks. Those 



GERANIUMS 



379 



propagated in Midwinter can go into 4s from their 23^-in. pots by 
the time you give all of your plants their final shift. 

April first, or thereabouts, is usually the time to do this final 
shifting, and it is always well to mix an 8-in. potful of horn shavings 
with every wheelbarrowful of soil. If you haven't got the shavings, 
use a 7- or 8-in. potful of bonemeal. A heavy soil and firm potting 
will give you stocky plants and large flower trusses. Place your 
plants, pot on pot, and as they grow space them to allow more room 
between them. 

If short on bench space, a mild hotbed can be used by the middle 
of April, or a coldframe by the first of May. You can grow Ge- 
raniums for Winter flowering, but it doesn't pay. Your customers 
who have had Geraniums all through the Summer, get tired of them 
and there are so many other flowering plants to select from. 

Plants which have been used for stock, can be planted out the 
foUowing Summer and wiU be fine for flowering or to take cuttings 
from in FaU. Another way is to root cuttings from outdoor plants 
in flats- filled with a sandy soil about September, and keep them in 
frames untU the first Chrysanthemums are out of the way, after 
which they can be potted up into 3s. The most satisfactory way 
of aU is to bench in Summer the plants you wish to propagate from. 




Fig. 166.— Geranium Mrs. Lawrence. Because of its freedom of bloom, ideal 

habit and charming soft sahnon-pjnk color, Mrs. Lawrence makes one of the finest 

of bedding sorts. You can sell other Geraniums besides Nutt, Poitevine and Hill 

if you give your patrons a chance to see them displayed as shown here 



380 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



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Fig. 167. — ^A House of Gbbaniums. One good Geranium blooming the week before 

Memorial Day is worth two in bloom the week after. Early propagation, a cool 

house, rather heavy soil, a shift at the right time, plenty of room and a sunny bench 

all help to secure large plants and early flowers 



Ivy-Leaved Geraniums 

Years ago a window or porch box was never complete without 
a few Ivy-leaved Geraniums. They were planted along the edge of 
the box and usually kept on flowering up to August. When they 
are in bloom with their graceful, hanging branches they are indeed 
showy, but of late years they have not been used much. I am sure, 
however, that the day for them will come again, as it has with other 
old favorites. 

They are as easily grown as the bedding Geraniums, but for 
extra heavy stock in 4s by the middle of May, you should root 
cuttings not later than February and grow them on in a cool 
house. 

Another way to grow them is to propagate in August and keep 
on shifting the plants until they are in 6s by February. Train the 
plants up on fan-shaped wire frames. Around Easter they most 
likely will be sohd masses of bloom, and you will have no trouble 
in selling them. During the Winter they require a cool house and 
the same treatment as the show Pelargoniums. There are a number 
of named varieties from snow white to dark pink, both single and 
double, but it matters little which one or ones you grow. They 
are all beautiful; 



GERANIUMS, GEUM 38i 

Sweet-scented Geraniums 
As with the Lemon Verbenas, we always have to have a good 
stock of these Geraniums, especially the rose-scented ones. Not 
only is this variety on account of its fragrant and fern-like" leaves, 
desirable for the flower border during Summer, but many retail 
growers are using it for greens during the Winter months. Planted 
out in a Carnation house on a sunny bench, with about 1 ft. of space 
allowed between the plants each way, the plants will furnish fine 
sprays of green up to June. Where is there a florist who cannot 
make good use of it? It often takes the place of more expensive 
Asparagus, and many people will much prefer it. 

The quickest results will be had if you have 4-in. pot plants 
(maybe left over from your Spring stock) and bench them at the 
same time the Carnations are housed. Keep the young growth 
pinched back a little up to the end of September; after that keep 
on cutting it, whenever it is about 12 in. or so long. Always leave 
a couple of eyes to break again. If you give this a trial you will 
soon have your customers ask for the green, and the part of the bench 
the plants are on will pay you as much as any other section of the 
house, if not more. 

Other varieties of sweet-scented Geraniums are the Oak-leaved, 
Lady Marie and capitatum (quercifoHum) , but the Rose is the most 
popular and the best for indoor planting. 



GERMAN IVY ^ 

See Senecio 

GEUM 

There is quite a number of Geums, some of which can be used 
in the rockery on account of their dwarf habit, but are of no great 
value to the florist. Among the others, which make showy border 
plants, is Geumflore pleno, the double scarlet; also an improved form 
of this, Mrs. Bradshaw, which not only has good color, but pro- 
duces flowers throughout almost the whole Summer and provides 
a most effective border plant. Generally speaking, while you have 
no trouble with the white, pink, blue or yellow shades in border 
plants, it is hard to sell anything red; that is why so many object 
to red Geraniums or Salvia splendens. Geums like a rather moist 
place and a light soil, and if you can give them partial shade, so 
much the better. Grow them on from seed or divisions of 
the roots. 



382 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



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Fig. 168. — Gladiolus "Schwabbn." One of 
the many good recent introductions. A yellow 
sort and one of the showiest for outdoors, it 
often rcarries from eight to ten perfect flowers 
open all at once 



GIANT FALL DAISY 

See Pyrethrum 

GIANT REED 

See Ornamental Grasses 

GLADIOLUS 

The Gladiolus is popular 
but often not profitable; in 
the following paragraphs is 
pointed out the reason why. 

Wonderful progress has 
been made in the develop- 
ment of the Gladiolus, and 
in the enormous spikes, 
giant flowers and endless 
sorts of exquisite shades 
of today we hardly recog- 
nize the varieties of 
twenty-five and thirty 
years ago. StiU better 
kinds are coming right 
along and a Gladiolus so- 
ciety composed of enthus- 
iasts is helping to make 
this very popular flower 
still more so. SpeciaUsts 



have appeared in almost every section of this country who devote 
their entire time to the growing of bulbs, of which many millions 
are produced annually. And so, while in nearly every State the 
Gladiolus has "become one of the most desirable Summer flowers 
in the public eye, the fact remains that every year, almost without 
exception, there is a Gladiolus glut on the market, during either 
the latter part of August or the beginning of September. It almost 
seems that the higher the price you pay for bulbs of the choicest sorts, 
the greater the loss if you happen to strike the market at this par- 
ticular time. 

From the present outlook there is absolutely no chance of a^ 
change in conditions; in fact, the more popular GladioH become 
the more of a glut we will have to look forward to during the period 
when the flowers are in bloom in every bed, border, and backyard. 
Yet florists in general will keep on planting their bulbs, as they 
have always done during Spring, in the open ground. They may 
make several plantings so as to obtain early, midseason and late 
crops, but as they cannot control weather conditions their main 



GLADIOLUS 



crop will usually come in at the very time when the whole country 
is full of Gladioli. One might say that carloads of. flowers are 
dumped on the market by men who grow the plants for the bulbs, 
and while such plants really shouldn't be used for cuttings they 
are, nevertheless. Such flowers may not be as good nor as long- 
stemmed as others, yet they are being made use of for occasions 
where cheapness in price counts for more than quality of stock. 
It is beyond the florist to change these conditions, but it isn't 
beyond him to not only arrange matters so as to avoid competing 
during the time of a glut, but actually to make the growing of 
Gladioli a paying proposition. 

How TO Make Gladioli Pay 



During the months of April, 
May, June and July the florist 
has the market in Gladioli 
practically to himself. If he 
takes advantage of this fact 
he needn't care whether hun- 
dreds of thousands of flowers 
go to waste on the market 
the next two months. Almost 
any greenhouse with three 
feet of headroom above the 
benches can be used for Gladi- 
oli. Their culture is very 
simple and, at the same time, 
the demand on the part of 
the public so brisk that one 
cannot help but wonder why 
the average retail grower does 
not pay more attention to it. 
There is no trouble in realiz- 
ing from $2 to $4 per dozen 
for weU-grown stock during 
April and May. No other 
flower we have to offer at that 
time compares with the Gladi- 
olus in stateliness, beauty 
and attractiveness; there is 
nothing jSner for decorative 
work, nothing more lasting. 
Besides, the blooms form a 
pleasant change from what 
your patrons have been getting 




Fig. 169. — Gladiolus "June." It is the 
number of open, perfect flowers that 
counts. A variety in which the first flower 
wilts before the fourth opens is of little 
use, no matter how large and well-colored. 
(Courtesy of the J. L. Childs Co.) 



384 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

in the way of flowers. A Gladiolus spike can be cut as the first 
flower opens and will, with just a little care, keep on opening for a 
week or more; or it can be left on the plant for a number of days 
after it is first ready to cut. By proper management the grower can 
even arrange so as to have a constant supply of flowers coming along 
from the beginning of April until the first flowers are being cut 
outdoors from bulbs planted in the open during April. While he 
has to have flowers aU Summer he should plant only lightly for such 
as will come in during late August and September and try to follow 
up with a crop ready for cutting during October or untU the snow 
flies. Gladioli are bound to turn out a money-making crop when 
handled in this manner, especially when only good varieties are 
made use of. 



Forcing Gladioli Under Glass 

For early forcing one should have early ripened bulbs, such as 
have been grown in rather sandy soil. Growers of bulbs intended 
for early forcing are beginning to pay special attention to such 
stock. These plants have their buds pinched out as soon as they 
appear and when the foliage dies down the bulbs are lifted and 
properly cared for; such treatment makes better bulbs for forcing. 
The first planting should be made in early December and while 
there isn't a great deal of difference in the time of flowering between 
these and such as are planted during early January, even five or six 
days often means a whole lot in getting your flowers ready for market. 
For the man who wishes to force only a few hundred bulbs at a time, 
it hardly pays to take up valuable bench space for the first or second 
planting. It is every bit as well to pot up into 4s and let them remain 
below a bench in the Carnation house until the plants are from four 
to six inches in height; but whether they have made that growth 
or not, examine the pots once in awhile and plant out before they 
become too potbound. 

Plant out on a sunny bench in double rows allowing about 
four inches between the plants and twelve inches between the rows. 
Almost any soU wiU do, and if you happen to have a run-down 
Carnation bench or another where a crop has either fafled or is 
through, the soil in the benches will not have to be changed. But 
don't make the mistake of planting Gladiolus bulbs in between your 
Carnations, where a plant has died out or an opening appears. 
Not only wiU the Carnations shade the Gladioli, but usually by the 
time the Carnations are ready to be thrown out, the Gladioli will be 
scattered all over the bench, not half filling it but making it im- 
possible for you to use the space for anything else. 



GLADIOLUS 



385 



Timing the Flowering Period 

The retaU grower who has use for a hundred flowers a week 
from the twentieth of April on up to August first should plant, in 
order to cut that quantity, approximately 300 bulbs for the first 
batch in late November. These will produce about seventy-five 
per cent of flowering plants and start to come into bloom the latter 
part of April and continue to the middle of May. The second 300 
should be planted about December fifteenth. These will come into 
flower from April thirtieth up to May thirtieth. Bulbs planted 
January tenth will come into bloom about the early part of June, 
and so on. The later you plant, the shorter the time required to 
get them into flower. While the first batch may require from 
seventeen to twenty weeks, those planted under glass in February 
can be brought through in about fourteen weeks. It is always safe 
to plant thirty per cent more 
bulbs than you figure getting 
flowers. You may obtain a much 
higher yield, and frequently out 
of a lot of one hundred bulbs 
planted at the same time there 
will be quite a number coming 
into flower fuUy four weeks 
later than the rest. If you 
grow your first plants on in pots, 
as soon as they are cut the rows 
may be replanted with stock 
coming into flower about the 
early part of June (from bulbs 
potted up about the end of 
February). You can also make 
a planting of potted plants in _ 
a mild hotbed by the middle of 
April and remove the sashes in 
early May when the plants begin 
to touch the glass. Another lot 
can be planted out of pots in a 
coldframe by the end of April, 
and still another lot out of pots 
into the open field. 

The proper way is to mark 
down the dates as you plant 
the bulbs, preserve a correct 
record, and keep on changing 
the dates of plantiiig and the 
number of bulbs made use of 




Fig. 170. — Gladiolus "Am)rica." We 
have today grander varieties than this 
good old standby, but the florist still 
thinks well of it as a paying proposition 
for both outdoors and indoors 



386 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

at each planting to suit your own requirements. This much, how- 
ever, is certain: Gladioli can be made to bring good returns if 
grown under glass and the florist who doesn't do this is not taking 
advantage of what has been accomplished in their development. 



Flowering Gladioli in Pots 

Gladioli cannot only be started and grown on in pots to he 
planted out on benches later, but they can also be successfully 
flowered in pots. A l^^-in. bulb is too large for a 4-in. pot. On 
the other hand, putting one into a 5-in. pot means taking up a 
lot of space. A better way is to plant three bulbs in a 6-in. pot. 
This is better than starting them in 4- or 33>^-in. pots and repotting 
later as it avoids disturbing the roots. To the smaller grower in 
particular, pot culture will appeal as he usually is crowded for 
space and can place the plants in pots whenever there happens to 

be room. Or, if by early 
Spring he finds that a bench or 
part of one can be had, he can 
still plant the stock out even 
from the large pots, for it re- 
quires less care and labor to 
attend to them when planted 
out. If you prefer pot culture, 
get the bulbs down at least an 
inch or so below the rims of 
the pots so as to afford space 
for watering. 

Varieties and Cultural 
Notes 

To try and name six or 
twelve of the best florist vari- 
eties of Gladioli is, to my mind, 
impossible. There are far too 
many "best" ones to recommend 
just a few or to mention all of 
them. Of the sorts of today 
perhaps none is more exten- 
sively used for forcing than 
America, yet for extra-early 
April flowering I would prefer 
the Primulinus hybrids; while 
Fig. 171.— Gladiolus "Mrs. Francis somewhat smaUer in size they 
King." Coming into flower a little later „_„ amnTur thp pasiest forcers, 
than America, this is one of the best ^^ among tne easiesi loioe 
of the standard garden varieties For an earlier pink tnan 




GLADIOLUS, GLOXINIA 387 

America, but somewhat darker in color, Halley can be used, and 
Wabrink is another extra-early, flesh-colored pink. Mrs. Francis 
King is still a great favorite for forcing, of light scarlet color. 
Chicago White is a good forcer, and so are Mrs. Frank Pendleton 
and Prince of Wales. For second early and later flowering, almost 
any of the newer sorts can be used; among them Schwaben is a 
fine yellow, variety. Myrtle is Kght rose, and I'lmmaculee is a 
grand white. 

In regard to cultural directions a house at 50 deg. is most 
suitable up to April. Benches are better for early stock and soUd 
beds for the later plants. Many failures with bench culture result 
from allowing the soil to become too dry; this is hkely to result 
in the plants coming blind in shallow benches. Feeding with 
manure in the shape of a mulch as soon as the first buds show is 
in order, and the plants should be staked long before they act- 
uaUy need it. 



GLOBE AMARANTH 

See Gomphrena 

. ' GLOXINIA 

The only drawback to Gloxinias is that they don't flower during 
the Winter months. But even in Summer they are of value, if for 
no other purpose than to decorate your show house. Theiy are fit 
companions for the tuberous-rooted Begonias and the fancy-leaved 
Caladiums, and while they are a little more particular as to how you 
treat them, when you can obtain tubers during early Spring it 
isn't hard to have them in good shape and full of their beautiful, 
richly colored flowers. 

Start the tubers in 4-in. pots in a mixture of leafihold, sand 
and a Uttle well-rotted cow manure with good bottom heat. Keep 
shaded and as the leaves appear be careful with the waterlog. You 
cannot do it with the hose so make use of the old-fashioned way^— 
the watering can — and go over each plant carefully. Eixamine 
every one and don't apply water unless it is needed. On the other 
hand, they sufi'er every bit as much if they don't get water when 
ready for it, for they want a moist soil. 

Keep the leaves dry; to get them moist on a hot day early in 
the morning doesn't hurt, but they soon go if you wet. them every 
time you water the plants. They want most of all a little shade, but 
if you overdo it you may obtain fine foliage, but no flowers. Gloxinias 
are easily grown from seed but the retail grower has other things 
to do and is better oflF buying a few tubers each year. 



388 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

GOLDEN BELL 

See Forsythia 

GOLDEN FEATHER 

See Pyrethrum 

GOLDEN GLOW 

See Rudbeckia 

GOMPHRENA (GLOBE AMARANTH) 

This is a pretty annual that can be used the same as the Heli- 
chrysums and other Everlastings. Its blossoms, similar in shape.to 
Clover heads, come from pure white to a dee'p red and the plants 
are covered all Summer with a mass of bloom. You should recom- 
mend them for the old-fashioned flower border and grow on a nice 
lot of plants for your Spring trade. Sow seed and treat the same 
as you would Asters, Zinnias, or Marigolds. 

GRAPE HYACINTH 

See Muscari 




Fig. 172.— Gbevillea hobusta, or Silk 
Oak. Sow seed in July or August, grow on 
in a 50-deg. house and you can 'by May 
have 12-in. plants in 3}|-in. pots. They 
can take the place of Bostons and will 
stand anything a Geranium or Vinca will 



GREVILLEA ROBUSTA 

Grevillea robusta, or Silk Oak, 
is a plant which, though as 
old as the hills, is not as yet 
nearly enough appreciated by 
the retail grower, despite its 
great usefulness and easy cul- 
ture. Besides that, it can be 
grown in a temperature of 45 
to 48 deg. over Winter; that 
is, it can get along under such 
conditions without showing 
bad effects. 

When you fill window boxes 
and vases during the months 
of May and June and have 
the Vincas or Ivies along the 
edge with perhaps Geraniums, 
Heliotropes and Goleus as the 
central feature, you are in 
need of something light, feath- 
ery and graceful to overcome 
the formal appearance. That 
is the time you will appreciate 



GREVILLEA, GYPSOPHILA 



389 



having on hand a nice lot of Grevilleas about twelve inches in height 
and in 4-in. pots. It means a saving in Boston Ferns of which, in 
the smaller sizes, there has been a shortage during May and June 
every year as far back as I can remember. 

The Grevilleas can stand full sunlight during Summer, but they 
do as well in window boxes filled with an assortment designed for 
shady positions. Again, you can use the plants during the Fall and 
Winter months, especially around Christmas, for made-up baskets; 
and small stock out of 2j^-in. pots will make fine center plants for 
the filling of fern dishes. Seed of Grevilleas can be sown any time 
between April and June in flats. In about six weeks the seedlings 
will be large enough for 2j^-in. pots. By October shift them into 
3j^-in. pots, in which they can remain aU Winter, going into 4s by 
March. Give them a cool house or a frame during Summer and make 
later sowings if you desire 23^-in. stock during Midwinter to be 
used in fern dishes. It doesn't pay the florist to carry the plants 
over into the second year. 



GROUND IVY— See Nepeta 

GYPSOPHILA ELEGANS 

This is only a little annual, but one of great usefulness to the 
florist. You have the annual and perennial Gypsophfla during the 
Summer months and 
Stevia from November 
to the end of February, 
but you are very apt to 
be short on a small 
white flower on graceful 
stems during March, 
April, and May (when 
really you have as much 
use for it as at any 
time of the year) unless 
you sow some seed of 
Gypsophila elegans the 
last week in December. 
Transplant the seed- 
lings later about two 
inches apart in 3-inch- 
deep flats, where they 
can remain until they 
flower. If you have no 
bench space, the flats 
are just as well off on a 
shelf. By making several 




Fig. 173. — Indoor Grown Gypsophila elegans. 
Buy seed by the poimd and sow it every few days 
from January on, first in benches, later in frames 
and outdoors. With it you can improve ahnost 
any floral arrangement and save on other flowers 
and expensive greens 



390 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

sowings you can have flowers to cut indoors almost up to the time the 
ones first sown in a hotbed (about April first) are in flower outdoors, 
which would be about the end of May. If you keep on sowing seed 
every two weeks outdoors during Summer you can cut flowers up to 
November. There is no one more in need of small white flowers all 
through the year than the retail grower, and, of course, for design 
work such material is of special value. This annual Gypsophila will 
furnish you with such flowers, and under glass as well as outdoors 
needs less attention than almost any plant I know. of. There is now 
a fight pink variety of this Gypsophila which gives flowers of a 
better color when grown under glass than when grown outdoors. 
For frame or outdoor culture sow in rows about ten inches apart 
and not too thickly, and cover the seeds very fightly. 

Gypsophila panigulata 

Like the annual sort, the perennial Gypsophila paniculata, or 
Baby's Breath, is of most value as a cut flower during the Summer 
months, though even in Winter in a dry state it is useful. 

If seed is sown in January and the small plants are kept mov- 
ing, they will flower a little the first year; but they won't be at their 
best until the second Summer. We now have also a double form, 
very attractive and more showy than the old one. The plants 
will not stand for a. heavy soil or poor drainage, and while, with 
many, they grow as easily as weeds, there are other people who find 
it hard to get them established. 

HARDY SWEET PEAS 

See Lathyrus 

HAWTHORN 

See Cratxgus 

HEATHER 

See Erica 

HEDERA HELIX (ENGLISH IVY) 

We won't discuss the hardiness of the English Ivy or how well 
it does in Europe or along the Western Coast. The florist is mostly 
interested in good 4- or 5 -in plants, bushy and from three to five 
feet in height or length. If one could produce such plants and do 
it reasonably, there would be practicaUy no limit to the number he 
could seU; but at present there is, and for some time there has been 
far greater demand than supply. No matter how hardy the English 
Ivy may be or what abuse it can stand, the hot, dry atmosphere of 
the average residence is too much for it. Yet this doesn't seem to 
bother the pubfic in the least and more Ivies than ever are sold. 
No florist can make a mistake in stocking up weU with Ivies of aU sizes 



HEDERA, HELENIUM 



391 



In a cool greenhouse 
it is no trouble to keep 
the plants growing and 
doing well- The heavier 
and bigger the plants 
the more money they 
will bring, and those 
who have room should 
keep on taking cuttings 
of half-ripened wood 
and increasing their 
stock. Small Ivies may 
be planted outdoors 
during Summer and 
lifted in Fall, and often, 
bymaking use of several 
plants in a 4-in. pot, 
salable stock may be had 
the following Spring. 
Some growers root the 
cuttings and at once 
plant them in 2 or 23^- 
in. pots, set out that 
way and pot up again 
in Fall. If you want to 
plant out again the 
second year, the plants 

should be staked while outdoors, as otherwise they will take root 
along the ground. The retail grower who is always in need of 
Ivies may find it best to purchase his requirements; and yet it 
won't hurt him to grow on a few hundred plants each year him- 
self. It takes from three to four years to grow bushy 5- and 
6-ft. specimens. However, as they do not require a hothouse and 
can stand neglect and still thrive, they are money makers even 
when handled on a small scale. 




Fig. 174. — -English Ivy. There are many sec- 
tions in the United States where this is not hardy, 
but grown in pots under glass it is a great favorite 
everywhere 



HELENIUM 

This is a fine perennial when planted in clumps for Fall effects. 
Of upright growth and about three feet tall, the plants are covered 
with hundreds of single, brown and yellow, Daisy-shaped flowers 
and are very effective. For those who want flowers in September 
and October you should recommend Heleniums. 

There are five or six fine sorts: H. grandicephalum stridum, 
with deep orange-crimsOn striped flowers; H. Riverton Gem, a 
deep glowing yellow and terra cotta; H Riverton Beauty, clear 



392 FRITZ BAHR*S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

yellow and brown; H. Hoopesii, which starts to produce its large 
yellow blossoms in July; and H. autumnale superbum rubrum, of a 
deep blood red color. 

Heleniums are best propagated by root division as soon as the 
flowers have gone and it is always well to plant a few in a frame 
where you can protect them in case something happens to those 
out in the open. 

HELIANTHEMUM (ROCK ROSE) 
The Helianthemums, of which there are a number of named 
varieties, are not of much value to the florist as cut flower plants, 
but they do come in handy as hardy border plants. They can be 
used to advantage in rock gardening as they thrive in the hottest, 
driest spots and hardly ever grow over ten to twelve inches. They 
come in a great assortment of shades from pure white to a red and 
their flowering period extends over several months. During July 
most of them are completely covered with blossoms. Also the plants 
are evergreen and grow easily from seed, or can be divided. Sud- 
berry Gem is a fine buff-colored sort; Rosy Gem is pink, and 
H. aureum, yellow; a good double red is Mrs. Earle. 

HELIANTHUS (SUNFLOWER) 

What interests us most among the different forms of Heli- 
anthus are the hardy varieties of which there are a half-dozen or 




Fig. 175. — Helianthus. _ In September and October when the hardy border begins 

to thin out, this hardy single Sunflower is at its best. One plant once established 

will soon grow into a huge, attractive mass 



HELIANTHUS, HELIOPSIS 



more, all desirable and well 
worth planting. Some of them, 
especially single ones such as 
H. orgyralis, H. mollis and 
H. WooUey Dod, when once 
planted are likely to overrun 
everything in time and even 
establish themselves in a ma- 
cadam driveway. But they 
are "easily kept in place and 
during the late Summer 
months will become masses of 
yellow blossoms. 

If you plant them along 
a fence and they once become 
established you will always 
have stock to sell from in 
Spring and Fall, and flowers 
to cut. Should any of your 
customers want something for 
mass planting or naturalizing, 
you couldn't recommend any- 
thing better. 

H. multiflorus flore plena 
is the hardy double Sunflower 
and while not as rank a 
grower nor, in a cut state, as graceful as the single sorts, it is well 
to carry a stock for those who handle perennials. 

Among the annual varieties there are some small, single-flower- 
ing sorts which, when sown outdoors in May, will provide masses 
of desirable cut flowers, fine for decorative work, during July. 




Fig. 176. — ^Hblianthus multiflorus. Five- 

and six-ft. stems of this hardy Sunflower, 

loaded with their golden-yellow flowers, 

are fine for decorative work 



HELIOPSIS 
(ORANGE SUNFLOWER) 

Heliopsis Pitcheriana always attracts attention when in bloom 
in the hardy border. Its large, Daisy- or Sunflower-shaped blossoms 
of deep orange color make it so, and the fact that it flowers in August 
is another good feature; besides it lasts for days when cut. If you 
handle hardy plants include it in your list. It is easily grown from 
seed which, if sown during the Summer, will give you flowering 
plants the following year. Moreover, the plants don't need pro- 
tection over Winter. H. scabra excelsa is a fine, pure yellow, semi- 
double border plant, especially when used in groups or masses. 
It grows fully three feet tall and blooms in August. 



394 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 177. — Heliohhysum. This, the most popular 

of the Everlastings, is easily growti from seed sown 

outdoors. , The flowers are useful in many ways 

during Winter 



HELICHRYSUM 

If you retail flowers 
you wiU have to carry 
the so-called Everlast- 
ings. No matter whether 
you personally care for 
them or not, there are 
always some among 
your patrons who will 
want them and it is an 
easy matter to sow a 
long row or two out- 
doors about the end of 
AprU. They will start 
to flower by July and 
keep it up until Novem- 
ber Always cut the 
flowers just before they 
are fully open, and what 
you don't seU, hang up 
in an airy shed, tied in 
bunches of twelve or 
twenty-five.. 

You wiU also find 
it weU to sow a few in- 
doors and have a good 



supply of seedlings on hand for your Spring trade. 

HELIOTROPE 

See Valeriana 

HELIOTROPIUM 

The Heliotropes, with their sweet vanilla-scented flowers and 
flower heads ranging from almost white to deep blue, are today 
mostly used for bedding. There was a time when we trained them 
into standards, sold large specimens in pots, or had specimens 
planted out to cut from; but at present it is only in the gardens 
that we find them popular, except for a few in the greenhouse of 
the private estate. They make splendid bedders and if you place 
the cut flowers up to their necks in water and let them remain in 
a cool dark place for about ten hours they won't wilt the minute 
they get into a warm room. 

■For stock, either grow on a few plants in pots or lift some in 
FaU to be potted and carried in a 55-deg. house. Cut back a little 
by January first and the plants will soon break and give you any 
number of cuttings which should have a bottom heat of 70 



HELIOTROPIUM, HEMEROGALLIS 



395 



dcg. in order to root quickly. Rooted cuttings potted up by April 
first will grow into 4-in. pot plants and be in full bloom by the end 
of May. If you have trouble with your plants making enormous 
growth but not flowering enough during the Summer, try this: 
Enlarge the hole in the bottom of the 4-in. pot the plant is in to 
about the size of a quarter, and instead of setting out the plants, 
leave them in the pots, or rather, plant pot and all. 



HEMEROGALLIS 
(YELLOW DAY LILY) 

It isn't everybody who cares for this plant, yet wherever hardy 
plants are made use of, we usually find a few specimens. Sometimes, 
when given a chance, they have spread over a great area. They are 
really very showy planted in a mass when in full bloom. 




Fig. 178.— HEMEROGALLIS FLAVA. While not much of a florist's flower,, this has 
always been a favorite hardy border plant. Masses are needed to create a real effect 



396 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




You will want a 

few clumps, which will 

take care of themselves 

and pay good interest 

on the investment in 

the form of the stock 

they supply you with 

each year. H. flava is 

the most commonly 

seen, while H. Kwanso 

flore pleno is more 

^ showy with its double 

orange flowers blooming 

in July. H. Thunbergii is a 

single yellow form coming into 

bloom still later. 

HEN AND CHICKENS 

See Echeveria 

HEUCHERA SANGUINEA 

If for no other reason than for 
variety's sake, a few of these grace- 
ful June-flowering perennials should 
be found in the hardy border. They 
grow about two feet in height, the 
pinkish, bell-shaped flowers being 
While you may have the Shasta 
Daisies, Gaillardias, Coreopsis, Delphiniums, Sweet Williams and 
many others at their best, your assortment is hardly complete 
without Heuchera. A few sprays cut with stems 18 in. long will 
go nicely with almost any basket arrangement of cut flowers and 
will surely be appreciated by your patrons. 

It was away back in 1893 that I sowed a little package of seed 
sent to me by the introducers, Haage and Schmidt of Erfurt, 
Germany, and I have managed to grow a few plants each year 
ever since, propagating them partly from seed and partly by di- 
vision of the field clumps in early September. 

Of late years quite a number of other beautiful Heucheras 
have been introduced, among them "Walker's variety," with larger 
and better colored flowers than H. sanguinea. H. splendens 
has bright scarlet flowers and Nebulance has creamy white 
flowers. 



Fig. 179. — Hibiscus may be 
used in the hardy border or 
given a place by itself. Its 
large, showy flowers always at- 
tract attention 



borne on slender stems. 



HIBISCUS 



397 



HIBISCUS (ROSE OF SHARON, OR SHRUBBY ALTH^A) 

This Hibiscus is best known as Rose of Sharon and in localities 
where the Winters are not too severe the plants will grow into 
large specimens. These are covered with large single and double, beau- 
tifully colored flowers during 
September when but few 
other shrubs are in bloom. 
Even in severe climates where 
there is danger of the tops 
of the plants being winter- 
killed, the florist who handles 
nursery stock should recom- 
mend it. Often plants of such 
showy double sorts as Jeanne 
d'Arc and Leopoldii or 
H. rubra pleno will flower 
freely the first season, but of 
course they wiU be much 
better if pruned back severely 
the following Spring and 
aUowed to make a graceful 
growth of slender stems 
covered with dark green, 
shiny leaves. 

WhUe Hibiscus Rosa- 
sinensis, with its large 
trumpet-shaped flowers and 
dark green leaves, makes a 
showy greenhouse or con- 
servatory plant, it is of but 
little value commerciaUy. But 
what we know under the name 
of Giant-Flowering Mallow 
Marvel, flowering all through the Summer season, makes a showy 
subject for the hardy border or shrub bed and needs but little 
attention when once estabUshed. To have a few plants on your 
own grounds, means that you will take orders from those of your 
patrons who want more of a variety in their hardy borders. 

HIPPEASTRUM 

See Amaryllis 

HOLLYHOCKS 

See Althsea 

HONEYSUCKLE 

See Lonicera 




Fig. 180. — Heliopsis Pitchebiana. _ This 
perennial flowers from July on and is fine 
for cutting. The color is rich golden yellow. 
H. scabra excelsa is a superb double form. 
Both seed freely, but are best propagated 
by division 



398 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

HUNNEMANNIA (GIANT YELLOW TULIP POPPY) 

The average florist isn't well enough acquainted with this 
beautiful Poppy with its golden yellow flowers which, when cut 
just as the buds open, will remain in good condition for three or 
four days. With its graceful foliage there is nothing finer for the 
centerpiece of a dining table. 

Hunnemannias can be sown outdoors in April and will flower 
from June on; another sowing can be made about July and these 
plants will give you the finest flowers in late Fall; even light frosts 
won't affect them. 

Another way is to sow in March indoors and as soon as the 
seedlings are large enough to be handled, pot them up separately 
into 2s to be planted out later on in a coldframe, aUowing about 
ten inches of space between them. 

Hunnemannias are also fine for indoor flowering. Sow the seed 
about Christmas, transplant later into smaU pots and bench in a 
cool house in February. 

HYACINTHS 

The Hyacinths the florist uses belong to the Dutch bulb stock 
with the exception of the Romans which we import from France. 
They are aU most showy plants when in flower and have been 
favorites longer than any of us today can remember. 

Even the small florist can easily, with the help of the Romans, 
manage to have attractive pots, pans, dis'hes or made-up baskets 
in flower from the middle of December on, closing the season with 
the heaviest supply during Easter week. 

Roman Hyacinths for Forcing 

You cannot imagine anything more simple to handle or more 
useful around Christmas than Roman Hyacinths. On many oc- 
casions during my time can I recall a patron selecting a low basket 
filled with Roman Hyacinths, a few table ferns and an Adiantum, 
Winterberries and a bow of red ribbon at from $5 to $6 in preference 
to a Cyclamen, Begonia or Poinsettia. While in actual value the 
Hyacinth basket wasn't to be compared with the other plants, 
the way they were arranged and presented sold them, and so it is 
with a good supply of Romans in flower at Christmas time— you 
are enabled to make up little pots for those with limited means 
as weU as more expensive arrangements. Or, if the flats the plants 
are in are placed in a coldhouse, the flowers will last for many days 
and you can use them cut; there is nothing finer for design work 
and they are as good in a corsage. 

The bulbs usually arrive in September and 'for those who 
want to use the plants both for pans and dishes as well as to cut 



HYACINTHS 



399 



from, the best way is to plant in flats 3-in. deep, barely covering 
the top of the bulbs with soil. Place the flats in a coldframe, but 
instead of covering them with soil as you would for the Dutch stock, 
place shade frames over them and keep them rather dark, never 
allowing them to suffer for water. By the middle of October (or 
before there is any danger of frost) bring the flats inside and place 
them below a Violet bench; they may even go into a Carnation 
house by early November. Active growth wiU soon appear and 
most likely, if placed for a few days in a Rose house temperature 
around the first of December, the plants wiU all be in fifll bloom by 
December twenty-fifth. If, by early in December, the plants 
haven't made several inches of growth a good way to hustle 
things along is to place the flats on the hot water returns. Then 
as soon as the buds are visible, remove them to the light. 

Romans, if lifted out of the flats, and even if deprived of all 
their roots, will not show bad effects as long as you keep the soil 
moist in the dishes or pans in which you use them. Let those 
you want to have for January come along in a 50-deg. house; in 
fact, the cooler it is the better. 




Fig. 181.-HyAciNTHS AND TuLiPS. Hyacinths, thoughless satisfactory thanTu^ps 

for mass planting, .their heavy flower sp^es needmg ^J^^P""-*; «/« ^° £^^*S 

they deserve a place wherever a Spring display is wanted. Back ot those in tne 

picture are some Reizerkroon 1 mips 



400 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



Dutch Hyacinths 
While these Hyacinths are used for bedding, to have them 
at their best they should be grown or forced under glass and every 
retail grower should have a few coming along into flower from the 
middle of January on. There are grand named sorts which, if 
exhibition or first-size bulbs are made use of, should always be 
planted separately in pots — either 4s, or in the case of some of 
the largest ones, 5s. The smaller size bulbs frequently offered 
as miniature Hyacinths are best for pans and there are two ways 
of handling them. One is to plant the bulbs in flats three inches 
deep, allowing a little space between them; and the other is to plant 
them directly into the pans. The latter saves work, yet there are 
times when the plants in these pans don't all come even or flower 
at the same time which doesn't make a very attractive pan for the 
counter. A good idea, therefore, is to make use of both ways and 
if you get some uneven pans you can take the plants out carefully 
and replant to suit you. There are some varieties — and among them 
Gertrude, a fine pink — which are apt to show the effects of being 
lift:d when in bloom; other sorts don't mind it at aU. 

Forcing Dutch Hyacinths 

As with most other Dutch bulbs that we import, the sooner 
you plant them in late Fall the better; the sooner they will make 

root growth and become 
potbound — and there is 
absolutely no use in 
bringing into heat a 
Hyacinth which isn't 
potbound. Plants poorly 
rooted wiU never amount 
to anything. They may 
make a fine growth of 
foliage but usually they 
wfll bloom without a 
flower spike or stem and 
prove worthless. 

Plant early, and if 
you have no bulb cellar 
put the pots outdoors in 
a coldframe, water 
throughly and cover 
them with about twelve 
inches of soil and later 
on with a layer of strawy 
manure. During Fall 
examine the pots every 




Fig. 182. — Miniature Hyacinths. You don't 
need stakes for pans of miniature Hyacinths grown 
cool and given plenty of time. Easily handled, 
they are for the retail grower most important 
Winter- and early Spring-flowering stock 



HYACINTHS 40i 

so" often and never allow them to dry out; the soU in the pots 
must be kept moist at all times. The first batch can be brought 
indoors ^around Christmas and placed under a bench; a warm, 
dark place will in a few days cause the tops to get busy, and 
when: these are about six inches long they should be removed 
to mof e light. Always avoid a strong bottom heat and go over the 
plants twice a day to prevent their drying out. The less 
forcing you do after the plants have made six or eight inches of 
growth, the better. Whenever you notice that the buds are ap- 
parently ^tuck at the bottom and that the leaves make a good 
growth but hot the flower stem, there is absolutely no use in bring- 
ing in any more of the same batch of plants for the present. Let 
them remain outdoors for another month, when the plants wall 
have had a chance to become more potbound and when less forcing 
will be required. 

Here it is in a nutshell: Plant early; keep the soil moist; prevent 
severe freezing while outdoors; don't bring in until pot, pan or 
flat is filled with roots. After that it is a matter of keeping the 
plant in a dark, warm place with plenty of moisture in order to 
obtain foliage and a fair-sized flower stem; and, finally, light is needed 
to develop the flowers. 

As soon as the buds show color, a well-shaded, cool place should 
be given to finish and harden the flowers. In such a place during 
February you can keep them in good shape for days, whereas a 
sunny bench in a warm house two or three days finish them. During 
January, February and March it takes a full month of forcing to 
bring Hyacinths into flower, whereas less than three weeks is re- 
quired in April. The larger and heavier the spikes, the more 
they are in need of being properly staked. There is nothing better 
than the regular green Hyacinth stakes for that purpose; you can 
stick them right into the bulbs, close up to the stems, and use green 
twine for tying. 

Many retail growers make use of miniature Hyacinths during 
the Winter, both for the making up of pans and for cut >flowers. For 
these purposes we need only a few of each color at a time. A good 
way to do is to plant in flats divided into equal parte, setting 
the three most caUed for colors — white, fight pink and light blue — 
separately. In this way you won't need to force a whole flatful of 
a single color, while you can bring in as many flats as you hke. 

There is hardly any use describing the different sorts, there are 
so many beautiful ones. However, the foflowing are just a few of 
the best known: In white, I'lnnocence, Grandeur a Merveflle 
and La Grandesse; in yeUow, Princess Perfection; in fight blue, 
Queen of the Blues, Perle Brillante and Enchantress; in dark 
blue, Grand Maitre, King of the Blues and Marie; in rose-pink, 



402 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 183. — Hydrangea "Otaksa." The many beautiful French types have failed 
to crowd out the old Otaksa. Here the plant to the right is particularly fine. You 
don't need a greenhouse to overwinter plants that will flower in Summer; any place 
just a little above 32 deg. will do. Country florists should make more use of 
Hydrangeas around their places 



Gertrude and Queen of the Pinks; in deep pink, La Victoire and 
General De Wet. Gigantea is a beautiful pale pink and so is Lady 
Derby. 

Prepared Hyacinths 

The Roman Hyacinths will always be the main ones to use for 
Christmas forcing, but of late years the Hollanders have put on 
the market what are known as "prepared Hyacinths." (These 
consist of certain varieties which have been dug early and cured 
so as to make them suitable for extra early forcing. ^ 

Every florist has caU right after Christmas for bulb stock, when 
a few Hyaciiiths of the Dutch sorts are desirable. With just a 
little care you can get these prepared bulbs to bloom, but of course 
the earUer you can get them under way in Fall the better. Get them 
well rooted before placing them in heat. 

HYDRANGEAS 

All Hydrangeas are beautiful and all are valuable to the florist whether 
you consider the old standby, H. Otaksa, the many fine French sorts 
which have been introduced of late years and helped us out so much 
in overcoming the shortage of imported stock for Easter, the so-called 
hardy sorts, H. paniculata grandiflora or H. arborescens grandiflora. 

There are nurserymen today and large growers, too, all over 
the country, who make the growing on of Hydrangeas, such as 



HYDRANGEAS 



403 



Otaksa and the French sorts a specialty, and I doubt whether it 
pays the florist who uses a couple of hundred plants during the 
year to attempt to propagate and grow on his own requirements. 
I know we all feel hke taking cuttings and rooting them when we 
have a plant with a lot of fine shoots, and it isn't a great deal of 
trouble to carry the young plants along with the other stock, but 
isn't it cheaper to buy in Fall either field- or pot-grown plants ? 



For Easter Flowbring 

Whether Easter comes early or late, the best plants to flower 
for that date are those which have been grown on in pots during 
the Summer months. If kept shifted during the Summer, say up 
to August and the pots plunged up to their rims out in the open, 
with perhaps just a little shade above, the wood of the plants is 
ripened or hardened off by gradually withholding water from the 
end of September on. A light frost will usuaUy help to get the 
plants into a dormant condition. They are then placed either in 
a frame with proper protection or in a cool house. 

As you want them 
to rest for awhile they 
need only enough water 
to keep the buds on 
the end of the stems in 
good shape. Care must 
also be taken not to 
have them freeze, for 
those end buds will later 
on produce the flowers. 
Destroy them and you 
destroy the bloom. The 
plants are brought to a 
45-deg. house around 
Christmas and wiU soon 
get busy. Often the 
mistake is made of 
waiting too long in get- 
ting the plants under 
way, which means either 
getting the plants in 
bloom too late for 
Easter or subjecting 
them to a too high 
temperature. If they 
are aUowed to come 
along slowly, much bet- 




Fig. 184.— A Standard Hydrangea. For variety s 

sake and as something a little out of the ordinary 

around Eastertime, a few standards like this wiU 

be useful 



404 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

ter results can be obtained. Keep on increasing the temperature 
so as to have the buds show six weeks or so before Easter. Potbound 
plants properly treated in Fall and started slowly can, toward the 
end, stand almost any temperature as long as you water and spray 
them. If they show color weeks before Easter, gradually lower 
the temperature so as to harden them off before they are sold. 

Forcing Field-Grown Plants 

Some growers are quite successful in handling field-grown 
plants and getting them into flower by Easter, but weather conditions 
have a lot to do with it. To begin with, you want a good soil, well- 
manured and deeply cultivated to plant in, with plenty of drainage 
so you can water during a dry season without causing yellow foUage 
as a result of sour soil. All Hydrangeas like moisture, but good 
drainage, too. During a season of favorable conditions, the plants 
will make good growth and if lifted and potted up by the middle of 
September, brought into a frame, shaded a little and carefully 
watered, with a fight spraying during the noon hours on hot days, 
they will keep on growing and become re-established in the pots 
hj the middle of October. That's just what you want. Start in 
to keep them on the dry side and during November and most of 




Fig. 185.-^Hydhangea arborescens is not only a desirable outdoor flowering 
shrub but a valuable florists' cut flower as well. Plants cut back in early Spring 
will bloom fully a month ahead of H. paniculatagrandiflora. Plaee stems in water in 
a cool place for twelve hours after picking. For best results divide field plants 
every second or third year 



HYDRANGEAS 



405 



December rest them; after that 
treat the same as the pot-grown 
ones. If you want to make 
money, instead of insisting on 
getting the plants in for Easter, 
when you know it is very 
doubtful, don't rush them, but 
let them come along in a 55- 
deg. house and buy what you 
want for Easter. You will want 
your plants for later on, up to 
Memorial Day and even later. 

You might put down page 
after page of cultural direc- 
tions, yet you haven't conditions 
under control with field plants 
as with those grown indoors. 
Here we have at times gone 
through wet Summers when 
the plants made a soft, rank 
growth only to be cut down 
by an extra heavy early frost 
that killed every top bud and 
part of each stem. Again, we have passed through hot, dry Summers 
when, despite all the watering they received, the plants stood 
practically still. This was followed by an unusually wet Fall and 
the plants kept on growing away into December; there was no way 
of ripening the wood and we didn't get hardly any flower buds. 
This is not to say, however, that such conditions don't affect even 
the plants in pots; in fact, you run chances either way. 




Fig. 186. — ^Hydrangea "Mme. Moul- 
Uere," one of the many beautiful French 
sorts — a splendid white Easter plant. 
You can grow it much branched or to a 
single stem from Spring cuttings kept in 
pots over Summer 



Plants for Summer Flowering 

I believe that the retail grower is better off buyiiig either stock 
ready for forcing in Fall, or the plants in flower for Easter. I also 
claim that he should pay more attention to making use of Hydrangeas 
in pots and tubs for Summer flowering. We see beautiful speciinens 
displayed on lawns, terraces and in front of the main entrance of 
a residence, but we don't see enough of them, particularly at present 
when there is a shortage of Boxwood. Specimen plants of Hy- 
drangea should be pushed, and plants which come into flower during 
July and August are the most valuable. To grow such specimen 
plants on, or to get them ready, is an easy matter. Field grown 
stock can be carried in a coldframe or house all Winter and three 
plants which ordinarily would be large enough for 6-in. pots can 
be planted in a butter tub about April, but still kept in a frame or 



406 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 187. — ^A. Specimen French Hydrangea. A well-grown Hydrangea not only 
has large heads of perfect flowers, but also bears good foliage right down to the 

rim of the pot 

cool house. The idea is not to force them in any way. Of course, 
if you want plants in flower by June, bring them into a 50-deg. 
house in April. Leftover plants from Easter needn't be thrown 
away, but can be cut back and planted out, and will make fine 
stock for Summer blooming the second year. 

Hydrangeas are easily grown from cuttings rooted during early 
Spring when there are usually all kinds of new shoots appearing 
from the base of the plants you are forcing. Place them in sharp 
sand with bottom heat. 



Desirable Varieties 

H. Otaksa is still grown very extensively, especially for Summer 
flowering. Among the many beautiful French sorts let me mention 
just six which for variety of color are among the best: Avalanche 
is a large white and a close second to the popular Mme. E. Mouillke; 



HYDRANGEAS 407 

E. G. Hill and Souvenir de Mme. de Chautard are good pink sorts; 
General de Vibraye and Eclaireur are deep rose; and Trophee, one 
of the latest, is almost red in color. There is no doubt but what 
still finer sorts will be introduced and among them some which will 
be especially adapted for outdoors. Before long I look for some real 
double ones, of which we have already a forerunner in "Domotoi." 

Hydrangea paniculata gbandiflora 

When these hardy Hydrangeas are in bloom, there isn't much 
chance for anything else. In fact all the other favorites, such aa 
the Lilac, the Spiraea and the Philadelphus have gone long ago. 
Nature is far too lavish with her display of flowers among the shrubs 
in early Summer when everything seems to be in bloom at the 
same time. These Hydrangeas form one of the few exceptions. 
We have them with us from July on, and they remain and are still 
showy with their dry, brownish flower heads, even in November. 

Every reteiil grower should devote a fair-sjzed patch of ground 
to them, not only because they are so showy, but also because they 
are decorative as cut flowers and because you can use them in design 
work. The smaller blooms on long stems are fine for sprays. 

When you plant them in the' field let them have good soil 
and drainage and a liberal amount of manure. Next in importance 
is to cut the plants back severely each Spring. That is, if you want 
large flower heads prune back last year's growth to one or two eyes. 
In that way you wiU obtain 3- to 4-ft. straight stems with from 
8- to 10-in. flower heads, six inches across at the base. By merely 
trimming the plants a little you will develop only a lot of small wood 
bearing small flowers on short stems. 

If you sell plemts to your customers, don't prune them before 
they are delivered. A better way is to deUver and plant them and 
prune afterward, for there isn't much left after a 2- or 3-year old 
plant is cut back. Your nurseymEin wiU supply you with what 
you want and it won't hurt to order a few plants trained into stand- 
ard form; the little trees are very effective. 

Hydrangea ahborescens grandiflora 

This is better known as the SnowbaU Hydrangea and is also 
of value to the florist. It flowers in June and the last blossoms are 
usually cut as the first ones begin to appear on H. paniculata. The 
snow-white flowers come on long stems, are good keepers and can 
also be used in design work. The plants hke a rather moist soil 
and will do well even if partly shaded. They should be weU pruned 
each year since the new shoots which break from the bottom produce 
the showiest and largest flowers. Old plants can be taken up and 



408 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



divided, in fact they are better off for such treatment. You can 
also recommend them for planting as a background in the hardy 
border or with perennials. 

IBERIS UMBELLATA (CANDYTUFT) 

Candytuft is of most value to the florist when grown under 
glass, so as to be in flower during May. When well done and grown 
cool in a rather rich soil on a solid bed, such sorts as Improved 
Empress make splendid cut flowers. Sow seed from January on 
in flats; the seedlings are best potted up and later on transplanted 
where the plants are to flower, allowing four inches between the 
plants and fully a foot between the rows. Another way is to sow 
right in the bed or bench they are to flower in and thin out when 
the seedlings are about two or three inches in height. If you care 
more for quantity than quality, this is the cheapest way. 

For outdoor flowering, sow in rows where the plants are to 
bloom. This can be done in early May, or you can make several 
sowings during the Summer months. However, the ones which 

had a chance to make growth 
during cool weather will be the 
best. Indoors, never subject 
the plants to a temperature 
above 50 deg.; a little less is 
even better up to April. 

Hardy Candytuft 
{Iberis sempervirens) 

Along stepping stones, the 
margin of the pool or the edge 
of the rock garden is the 
proper place to plant this 
showy hardy Candytuft which, 
like the annual sort, is just 
one mass of white when in 
bloom. While this happens 
but once a year and lasts for 
only a few days, the foliage is 
evergreen and the plants hard- 
ly ever suffer even in severe 
Fig. 188.— Ilex aquipolium. The HoUy Winters. It is easily increased 
genus contains a number of fine sorts with u, j • • • ■ * x j xi, 

glossy leaves and ornamental Berries. /. "> division in August, and the 
aquifolium makes a showy plant for Christ- young plants are best carried 
mas, but, like all the species, it is of slow over thp first Win+Pr in a 
growth &nd not profitable to grow on ^ ^"® ™®^ Winter in a 

a small scale frame. 




ILEX, IMPATIENS 409 

ILEX 

A great majority of florists become acquainted with Ilex only 
around the Midwinter holidays when the cut Holly sprays are used 
as Christmas decorations. Ilex opaca is one of the hardy American 
HoUies. Its beautiful glossy green leaves and red berries are 
known to us all, and we find it in its native state all the way from 
the Louisiana coast along through to the Eastern States. We 
find Hollies of difl'erent species in Florida and along the western 
coast, and some, more on account of their showy berries than the 
quality of their foliage, find their way to the middle western and 
northern markets where they find a ready sale, because local climatic 
conditions are not favorable for the growing on of any of the Hollies. 

Ikx aquijolia, or the European Holly, is a beautiful evergreen 
shrub and so is Ilex crenata. When we behold either of them as 
specimens on lawns or growing in tubs, we feel badly because we 
cannot get the same results at home. But as in the case of palms, 
Dracaenas and other plants, I have seen in the West Indies enormous 
specimens growing in soil we would have considered worthless in 
the potting shed. Climatic conditions have to suit the plants if 
they are to thrive, and so it is with the Ilexes. I look forward to 
the time when more of these beautiful plants will be handled by 
the florist at a reasonable price. It is as plants full of berries in pots 
and tubs (which every florist can use to advantage during Winter) 
that these HoUies mean the most to us. 



IMPATIENS 

If you sell bedding stock you will have to carry Impatiens, for 
there are always some of your patrons who have shady places 
around their homes where Geraniums, Salvias or Petunias fail on 
account of the shade. In such cases you can't recommend anything 
better than Impatiens, and if there are objections to the red colored 
ones, you have sorts with beautiful shades of fight and dark pink 
as weU as white ones. AU do equally weU and, except in the pitch 
dark, will be masses of bloom until frost stops them. 

It takes just about three good sized 5-in. pot plants in the 
FaU to work up a stock of one thousand or more of 2j^- and 4-m. 
pot plants in full bloom by the following May. Once in awhile 
you have call for plants in bloom during the Winter months but 
there are other plants than Impatiens to choose from. This is not 
to say that Impatiens doesn't make a good house plant, but I am 
sure that every florist can dispose of a good number during the 
Spring months. It might even pay you to grow on a few extra 
heavy 4- and 5-in. pot plants to be used for the filling of wmdow 
boxes in shady places. 



410 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Seed of Impatiens is now offered and in three months after 
sowing you can have bushy plants in full bloom. But of course 
they come in all colors and shades, and a better way, if you have a 
good sort on hand, is to propagate through cuttings. 

IPOM(EA GRANDIFLORA (MOONVINE) 

The only trouble with these grand climbers in our northern 
climates is that while they grow finely and cover a lot of space, 
they never flower, or do so so late that it hardly pays. This is due 
to planting out too small plants or such as have been grown from 
late-sown seed. Moonvines, with their large flowers often measur- 
ing over six inches in diameter, are among the showiest of aU climbers, 
but should be heavy 4- or 5-in. pot plants by the time you plant 
them out in May. Such stock will start to flower in July and keep 
it up, the plants becoming each evening a mass of color. The 
flowers, like those of most Ipomcsas, remain open a good part of 
the forenoon. In order to get large plants by Spring, root cuttings 
of the outdoor plants in early Fall and keep them going aU Winter 
inside. In early Spring they will start to move rapidly and should 
have several shifts. 

If your . patrons ask for Moonvines you will only disappoint 
them by selUng small stock, that is, in any section of the country 
where the real Summer season is a short one. 

INDIGO, FALSE 

See Baptisia 

IRIS 

Among the desirable perennials, those best known and able to 
get along with the least attention, the German and Japanese Iris 
almost head the list. Not that they can take the place of Peonies, 
Delphiniums or Phloxes, but they can stand more abuse. Among 
the German Iris, in particular, some grand new sorts have been 
brought out of late years. They are money makers for every florist 
who handles hardy stock because, once established, they can be 
increased in great numbers and they will thrive in almost any soil — 
not only in a deep, rich mixture and where the roots are moist at 
all times, but on high ground too poor for other plants. 

Iris Germanica, or German Iris 

As stated above, some grand sorts have been of late years 
brought out in this group. Of these Iris pallida dalmatica is one of 
the very finest, growing fully four feet in height with a mass of 
large lavender flowers. These flowers have only to be seen by any 
of your patrons who are fond of the hardy border to bring you an 
order. Other good sorts are Sherwin Wright, a pure golden yellow 



IRIS 



411 



of good size, the plants 
growing about thirty 
inches in height; Lohen- 
grin, with extra large 
flowers of a deep mauve ; 
and atropurpurea, a 
beautiful rich purple of 
large size. Of course 
these are only a very 
few of many good ones, 
but you cannot make a 
mistake in working up a 
stock of all the above 
named sorts and push- 
ing them. 

The best time to 
divide the field clumps 
is in early August; by 
doing it then you will 
have well established 
plants to sell the follow- 
ing Spring. Always see 
to it that the sorts are 
kept separate; there is 
no caU now for mixed 
lots and no reason for 
them with so many 
beautiful ones to select 
call for Iris should not 
different distinct shades 
the old ones. 




Fig. 189. — ^Japanese Iris. There is an almost end- 
less variety of Japanese Irises, many of them, with 
their beautifiJ, soft shadings, resembling orchids. 
Even more than the German Irises they are fond 
of moisture 

from. The man who only has a limited 

carry over six or eight sorts, including the 

Keep on trying out new sorts and discard 



Japanese Iris (Iris Kaempferi) 

These require about the same treatment as the German type 
and come in an endless variety of shades. They require a moist 
position in order to do well. It is almost impossible to carry just 
a few hundred plants and keep them separate so if you have a good 
mixture on hand it usually answers. In case a patron insists on 
having only certain shades or colors, you can have your nursery- 
man supply you with them. 

Other Irises for Outdoor Planting 

Iris sibirica orientalis comes in a rich blue and a white sort 

(Snow Queen). It grows fully three feet in height and produces 

masses of fine flower stalks. Iris interregna is one of the earhest 

of aU Irises to flower, coming in bloom usually about the middle of 



412 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 190. — German Ims. We cannot consider these 
Irises — ^not even the many showy new varieties — 
of any great value to the florist as cut flowers. 
As hardy border plants, however, they are be- 
coming more and more popular 



May, with stems from 
fifteen to twenty inches 
in length. The flowers, 
Uke those of most Irises, 
are fine to cut, but you 
mustn't wait until they 
are fully open; rather 
gather them just as the 
buds begin to open. 
They will never do for 
shipping, but you have 
good use for them at 
home. 

Iris pumila hybrida 
is another early flower- 
ing sort and splendid 
for borders as it only 
grows about ten inches 
in height. It comes in 
white, yellow and deep 
purple. 

Bulbous Irises 

Among the Bulb- 
ous Irises we have the 
English and the Spanish 
forms, and of the latter, 
an improvement on the 
eral weeks earlier. Iris 



those called Dutch Iris are said to be 
original Spanish, coming in bloom sev 
tingitana is a still earlier type. 

Both English and Spanish Irises can be planted outdoors, 
but what makes them of particular value to the florist is that they 
adapt themselves so well to growing and flowering under glass 
during the early Spring months. 

Up to a few years ago the supply of bulbs came almost entirely 
from Europe, but they are now grown by the acre in California, the 
same as the Freesias, and are offered cheap enough for every retail 
grower to plant a few thousand and force them. So used they 
usually find a ready market, for they make ideal cut flowers. The 
bulbs can be planted in bulb pans allowing a little space between 
them, or flats can be used the same as for other bulb stock. Garry 
in a coldframe up to the middle of February when the first batch 
can be brought in and placed in a cool house. Later on increase 
the temperature, but never subject them to too much heat. 



JUNIPERUS 



413 



IVY, GERMAN 

See Senecio 

IVY, GROUND 

See Nepeta 

JAPANESE 
, BELL FLOWER 

■v'-jK See Platycodon 

''w- JAPANESE 
EUDZU VINE 
See Pueraria 

JERSUSALEM 
CHERRY 

See Solarium 

JONQUILS 

See Narcissus jonquilla 

JUDAS TREE 

See Cercis 




Fig. 191. — GiiBVBLAND Cherry. This is a great 

improvement over the Jerusalem Cherry (Solanum 

Capsicasirum), and a most desirable inexpensive 

Christmas plant. (See page 522.) 



JUNIPERUS (JUNIPER) 

The Junipers are among the most desirable of conifers. Every 
Qorist who does landscape gardening ought to know some of the 
varieties such as J. virginiana (Red Cedar), J. Sabina and the Irish 
Juniper, and, if at all possible he should carry a few plants of 
each on his home grounds. 

The Irish Juniper (J. communis var. hibernica), while not hardy 
everywhere, makes ideal stock to be used in connection with a 
formal garden or to be planted on terraces, in sunken gardens or 
anywhere a dense, evergreen column is wanted. While it grows 
to a height of twenty feet and over, specimens three to five feet 
are the ones mostly wanted. 

Juniperus Sabina (which we call here the Savin Juniper) is one 
of the most graceful of all conifers and many are its uses, for there 
is always demand for a low-growing, spreading evergreen: This 
variety is absolutely hardy and the florist who can obtain from his 
nurseryman a few small plants each Spring and plant them out to 
grow and develop on his own grounds, is bound to reap good returns 
for the money expended. The same holds good with the Red Cedar 
{J. virginiana, called Savin Juniper by some). It happens every 
Spring that some one wants a couple of upright evergreens to be 
planted near the gate or the steps at the entrance of the residence. 
Spruce or Arborvitae are not to be considered, but Red Cedars will 
fill the biU every time. 



414 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 192.— Kalmia LATiFOLiA IN Flowbr. Here is a fine Easter plant just a 
little different from the usual run of stock, 

KALMIAS 

Kalmias are native hardy flowering evergreens valuable for 
garden use like Rhododendrons, and for Easter forcing in pots and 
*u A^"^*^^ °^^^^ beautiful white and pinkish flower of K.latifolia, 
the Mountain Laurel or Calico Bush (and the most widely culti- 
vated species) IS the choice of many for a national flower. To prop- 
agate, sow seeds in early Spring in sand in a frame or cool house; 
prick oil as soon as possible and when seedhngs are estabhshed, 
grow on outdoors. Retailers had best buy stock already grown. 
Kalmias can be transplanted fairly easily but should be well mulched 
the hrst season. They dislike clay and Umestone soils. 



KENTIA 



415 



KENTIA 

The Kentias are the most useful of all the palms for the florist 
In the case of the retail grower, a good stock of them will always 
yield a handsome diyidend and no matt«r what you have to pay for 
well grown specimens, they are bound to, prove a good investment 
Give them a warm house with sufficient shade on the roof to prevent 
burning the leaves, and keep the soil in the pots as well as the 
atmosphere in the house moist at all times, and the plants will keep 
on growing into money. 

There is one good thing about the shortage of these plants and 
their higher price: it leads us to take better care of them. When 
it was possible to import them at comparatively low cost, they were 
slaughtered here just for the reason that they were able to stand a 
lot of abuse. 

Every florist can make use of Kentias (whether Belmoreana or 
Forsteriana) all the 
way from those in 2-in. 
pots for the center of 
fern dishes, on up to 
extra-large specimens 
for decorative purposes. 
Plants in 5-in. and 6-in. 
pots are the best for 
counter trade. 

You should always 
have some nice plants 
to offer around the 
holidays, for many 
people win prefer them 
to flowering stock, look- 
ing upon them as more 
lasting. I have always 
claimed that as long as 
you have a stock of 
good palms and ferns 
on hand, you are never 
sold out around the 
holidays. And what is 
left over of such plants 
forms a mighty fine 
asset later on. 

When you purchase 
Kentias, you are not 
purchasing perishable 




Fig. 193. — Kentia Belmoreana. The larger 
Kentias become, the more stately and graceful 
their leaves and general appearance. However, 
if you want a palm for an indoor or outdoor window 
box, a 3-in. or 4-in. K. Belmoreana will help the 
effect and prove as hardy as the ferns, Ficus or 
Pandanus used with it — if not hardier 



416 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



stock. A well filled palm house, no matter how small, always creates 
a good impression on the visitor and is a thing for the owner to be 
proud of. The little florist and the beginner don't always realize 
nor appreciate this fact, yet, after all, it isn't the grand structure 
you possess in the way of a greenhouse, but what you have in it 
that counts. You can make a plain looking interior of a palm or 
show house look good with a stock of Kentias, but without them, 
no matter what else you have in the house, things are not complete. 
I suggest to every florist who retails stock that he invest lib- 
erally in a nice lot of small and large Kentias and that when he 
gets them, he take care of the plants. Not only that, but let him 
make the best use of them in the decorating of his establishment. 
It pays. 

KERRIA JAPONICA 

You should carry a few Kerrias in your assortment of shrubs. 
The double form is the best, flowering practically all Summer and 

it is good not only for 
single specimen plants 
but also in hedges. 

For Winter effects 
also the Kerrias are de- 
sirable on account of 
the bright green color 
of their branches. You 
should consider them 
whenever a customer 
wants anything of that 
kind — and there are 
plenty "who do. Take 
the red and yellow 
twigged Dogwood, the 
brown barked Philadel- 
phus, the gray colored 
branches of the upright 
Honeysuckle, and the 
Kerrias to furnish the 
green, and you have 
quite a combination in 
these few alone. 

For a hedge, you 
can clip or prune the 

Fig. 194.— Some Palms in the East. To wto kerrias as formaUy as 

size Kentias will grow outside of Florida and Gali- Boxwood or Privet and 

tornia is weU shown here. Compare the size of the ,„ tiinp nhtain a dense 

tubs with our friend G. Thommen of Boston, stand- ™ " ^' '^'^^^^ ^ ^^^^^ 

ing by them growth. 




LATANA, LARKSPUR 



417 



KUDZU VINE 

See Pueraria 



LACE FLOWER, BLUE 

See Didiscus 



LANTANA 



There isn't any longer the demand for Lantana that there was 
in former years when it was largely used for bedding. But for all 
that, the retail grower should always have a few well-grown SJ/^- and 
4-in. pot plants on hand during the Spring months. They not only 
make good bedders, but do finely in porch boxes. The trailing sort 
is best adapted for the latter purpose and makes a showy hanging 
basket for the porch and a good companion for the trailing Fuchsia. 

Garry along in pots a few plants left over from Spring; they 
are best kept in a frame with the pots plunged in soil. Bring to a 
Carnation house in October and keep a little on the dry side. By 
the middle of December cut back a little and shift into larger pots; 
the new breaks will be ready for the cutting bench in a few weeks 
and win want a little bottom heat. 

LARKSPUR, ANNUAL 

(For the perennial sorts, see 
Delphinium) 

The annual Larkspurs 
are among the desirable 
Summer flowers and are 
equally well adapted for in- 
door flowering during the 
early Spring months. They 
come in many shades of 
white, pink, and blue, and 
nothing is more graceful in a 
basket of garden flowers — 
or more lasting. 

For outdoors sow seed in 
flats about March first; carry 
the httle plants in 2s or 2j^s 
and plant in a mild hotbed 
or coldframe in Aprfl. They 
wiU flower by early May. 
Another lot can be sown in 
rows in a frame in early April, 
and by the end of that month 
you can transplant indoor 
started plants to the field. 
Still another batch of seed 
can be sown in the open about June fifteenth, which wiU give you 
fine spikes toward Fall when the others are pretty well played out. 




Fig. 195. — Summer Labkspuh. Its grace- 
ful habit, long stems, finely cut foliage and 
soft-toned flowers of blue, pink and white, 
make it desirable for cutting and equally 
as good for growing under glass for early 
Spring blooming 



418 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 196. — Latania bokbonica. This is, perhaps, not as popular as in years gone 
by, but it is still a desirable palm, growing into a salable plant more quickly than 

most varieties 



For indoors sow seed in December, and later plant the seedlings 
in a bench or a solid bed, allowing about four inches between 
them in rows eighteen inches apart. A later sowing can be made by 
the end of January. These will be at their best around Easter and 
I doubt whether you could have a more desirable crop in bloom 
at that time. In fact, every florist retailing his stock will find these 
Larkspurs desirable whenever he has any to cut, no matter what 
the time of the year. 

LATANIA BORBONIGA (FAN PALM) 

As house plants the Latanias are not to be compared with 
Kentias, Arecas or Phasnix Roebelenii, for they lack the gracefulness 
that the others possess even as small plants. Yet as decorative 
plants able to stand rough usage, they are of value. The florist 
who uses palms for decorating can easily purchase 4- or 5-in. pot 
plants of Latania and let them develop into larger specimens. Of 
late years the smaller sized Latanias have been used freely in the 
filling of window and porch boxes in connection with ferns, Ficus 
and English Ivies; here they can stand as much as the other plants, 
whereas the use of other palms would prove too expensive. 



LATHYRUS LATIFOLIUS (HARDY SWEET PEAS) 

. While not of great value to the florist, these Sweet Peas seem 
to be gaining in favor every year. We have call for them to be 



LATHYRUS, LAVENDULA, LILIES 419 

planted at the gate entrance of a garden, along low wire fences 
and to cover stumps or rockeries. 

The plant is perfectly hardy and there are both white and pink 
colored sorts. The best way is to get your plants from the nursery- 
man or sow seeds mdoors, carry the plants in a cool house over 
Wmter, and have them ready for planting out the following Spring. 

LAVENDER, SEA 
See Statice 

LAVENDULA VERA (LAVENDER) 
Since hardy plants have come to the front, a call for a couple 
of Lavender plants is a common one. When filling an order for 
perennials including one or two each of Rose Geraniums and Lemon 
Verbenas to complete a hst of bedding stock your customer wants, 
you will find Lavender desirable on accounts of its dehghtful fragrance, 
its little blue flowers during July, and its hardiness. You will want 
just a few clumps in your collection. 

LEMON VERBENA 

See Aloys ia 

LIGUSTRUM 

See Privet 

LILAC 

See Syringa 

LILIES— GREENHOUSE SORTS 

What we know as Easter Lilies have become important florist flowers 
for not only Easter but the rest of the year as well. They are used 
for all purposes from weddings to fimerals, are adapted for all occasions 
where flowers are used in pots or in a cut state, and with the help of 
cold storage bulbs, they are with us almost every day of the year. 
The display in the florist's cooler can hardly be called complete witiiout 
a vase of cut blooms and buds in the center, whether the time be Win- 
ter, Summer, Spring or Fall 

'THERE are several varieties of Lilium longiflorum, that used 
*■ almost entirely by the Lily specialist for Easter being giganteum. 
This is the easiest to handle on a big scale, that is, if proper heating 
facilities can be had so as to maintain a 60-deg. temperature at all 
times. Without this, you cannot force the Lily successfully, and you 
are far better off purchasing your requirements ready for the 
counter from the large grower. 

Forcing Lilium giganteum 
The bulbs from Japan usually reach us in November, but 
whether late or early, you should have pots and soil ready so you 



420 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 197. — Easter Lilies. If a few hundred bulbs of Lilium longiflorum develop 
into flowering plants just in time for Easter week they will pay well. But most 
smaller florists find it more profitable to let the speciaUsts grow their Lilies for them 



can get at the bulbs as soon as they reach you. There are growers 
who prefer planting the bulbs in the smallest size pot possible and 
shifting them in about six weeks or so; then there are some who use 
5- and 6-in. pots and let them remain in these pots; others who 
plant the bulbs one inch or so below the surface ; some who have the 
tops just even with the surface; and still others who have them stick 
above the soil an inch or so. Some place the pots under a bench 
on top of each other, some put them in a frame and some place 
them at once on top of the bench. 

Well, all these ways are all right, but to my mind, they have 
absolutely nothing to do with success or failure. Use common 
sense, make use of a fair, porous soil and drainage in each pot; 
start the bulb slowly in a 50-deg. house, and when once rooted and 
growth has begun gradually increase your temperature to 60 deg. and 
keep it there. If you have sound, well-matured bulbs to start with, 
such as haven't suffered in transit (which is often beyond the power 
of the importer or cannot be noticed in looking at the bulbs) you 
are reasonably sure of success if you keep up the temperature, 
keep the plants clean of insects and water them properly. " 

Read the experience of the most successful Lily growers, and 
this will be the sum and substance of their story. The fewer LiUes 
you force in the same house with a lot of other stock, the more certain 
you are of success. When a whole house is devoted to their culture 
with proper heating facilities and one man in charge to attend 



LILIES FOR FORGING 421 

to their wants, condition are most favorable. But in either case, 
one has to start out with the right kind of bulbs. 

A giganteum Lily can stand a temperature of 90 deg. toward 
the last .two months if well rooted and in good health, but not 
quite far enough advanced in regard to showing buds. It is always 
safe to have this happen about six weeks before Easter; this is not 
to say that they can't be brought in in a shorter time, but it is better 
to increase the temperature above 65 or 70 deg. after the buds 
show, rather than before. Always bear in mind that the harder you 
force, the more particular you must be with watering, and the chill 
should always be taken off the water. Spraying freely is also neces- 
sary. What makes for success is an even temperature, having the 
plants grow on during January and February, increasing the heat to 
70 deg. if necessary, and slowly lowering it again later on to harden 
the plants off. A sudden drop with the buds partly advanced is 
likely to result in splits. On the other hand, to maintain a night 
temperature of 60 deg. and then, during a severe cold spell, to let 
it go down to 50 deg. for a week or more, will start trouble for 
certain. A Lily once stuck or stunted is usually beyond the reach 
of the best skill. It might flower, but it would be minus the stem 
which a Lily should have to be worth anything. 

LiLIUM FORMOSUM 

This, to my mind, is the ideal retail grower's Lily, for the reason 
that you can successfully grow it if necessary in a 50-deg. house. 
This does not mean that you will have the plants in for Easter 
should this great Lily day fall on an early date. To insure this, 
the house should be kept a Uttle above 50 deg. From bulbs planted 
in October, you will start to cut flowers from early March on and 
some of the plants will come in about May. But what of that? 
With sound bulbs and just a little attention, almost ninety per cent 
will develop into good flowering plants that you can use as they 
come along. If you are willing to subject some of the late ones to 
enough heat and hold those a Uttle too far advanced back in a cool 
house, you can manage to get a good percentage in for Easter Week. 
Those who experience trouble with the giganteums should try the 
formosums. 

LiLiuM Harrisii 

Years ago we used Lilium Harrisii altogether for Easter and 
for years didn't know what it was to have a failure. But graduaUy 
this changed and since the introduction of L. giganteum, Harrisu 
is only made use of for extra-early forcing. With quite a tew it 
is still a favorite, and the same is true of L. multifhrum, but giganteum 
and formosum are not likely to be replaced by them.. 



422 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 198. — LiLiuM TiGMNUM, One of our 

many beautiful native Lilies, hardy over a 

great part of the United States 



Cold Storage Lilies 
Cold storage giganteums 
are being made a paying 
crop, not only by the special- 
ist, but also by the florist, 
who has use for only a single 
case of bulbs at one time. 
To bring them into flowering 
condition is a comparatively 
easy matter and should be 
practiced more during the 
Summer and Fall months when 
there is no trouble about tem- 
perature ; when, in fact, if any- 
thing, there is too much heat. 
Start the bulbs in a cool, 
dark place and later on let 
the plants have a sunny 
bench. As they start to 
open, use a shaded house 
and with a little care you 
can prolong the flowering 
period quite materially. You 
certainly will experience no 



such trouble as is often encountered in the case of plants intended 
for Easter blooming. 



LILIES— HARDY SORTS 

Under hardy Lihes the florist classes those varieties which, 
during the Summer and Fall months, flower outdoors. Of these, 
Lilium candidum, L. speciosum rubrum and L. s. album, and L. 
auratum are the most valuable to him; and of these iom L. speciosum 
rubrum really should head the list as the most important, particularly 
from the retail grower's standpoint. Plants of this variety in flower 
can be had from late June on up to after New Year's — that is, with 
the help of cold storage bulbs. There is use for the flowers every 
day whether they are to be used with long stems for decorative 
purposes or as single flowers to take the place of an orchid in a 
corsage bouquet or in a floral design arrangement. If you want a 
beautiful wreath make it out of rubrum Lilies, Gypsophila elegans 
and Asparagus plumosus. You cannot beat this combination during 
the Summer and Fall months and the best of it is that even the smaU- 
est of florists can and should have all three items growing in his own 
establishment. 



LILIES— HARDY SORTS 



423 



LlLIUM SPECIOSUM RUBRUM 

These bulbs usually reach 
us from Japan in November. 
If wanted for permanent plant- 
ing in the hardy border and 
if the ground has been pre- 
pared and covered with 
manure to keep the frost out, 
the bulbs can be planted at 
once. For the best effect 
from seven to twelve bulbs 
should be planted in a 
clump allowing about ten 
inches of space between them 
and planting them about six 
inches deep. As long as the 
Winter isn't too severe they 
will come out nicely in the 
Spring; however, it is always 
best to apply a heavy cov- 
ering for newly planted bulbs. 




Fig. 199.— Lilium: speciosum rubhum. 
This is a money making LUy. _ With the aid 
of cold storage bulbs Qie florist is able to 
cut flowers over a long period 



The florist will most like- 
ly want his plants to flower 
in pots This makes their handling easier, if he doesn't want 
them to flower all at the same time. Even so some plants are in 
bloom for almost a month from the time the first flower is ready 
to cut until the last one opens. 

Pot up the bulbs in the pots they are to flower in, getting the 
top of the bulb just below the surface, water throughly and either 
place in a cold house or, what is as good, in a deep coldframe with a 
layer of soil or straw on top of the pots, for while freezing doesn't 
hurt them, if you can prevent it, so much the better. By the first 
of March a batch of plants might be brought into a 45-deg. house 
where active growth will start in a couple of weeks. The plants 
brought into a Carnation house later on wiU start to flower toward 
the middle of June; another lot can be brought in by the end of 
March and treated the same way. By early April aU covermg 
over the pots should be removed as otherwise the plants wiU grow 
through it. You can then either bring all of the plants m or only a 
part, leaving the balance in the frame where they wiU come mto 
flower by August. 

Cold storage bulbs can be planted from February up to July 
and these wiU flower from August on until January. We have had 



424 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 200. — LiLiuM CANDiDUM. This is a splendid hardy Lily which can also be flow- 
ered under glass — although it will not stand hard forcing 

these Lilies in 6-in. pots and after flowering have aUowed the plants 
to dry off slowly. Then the bulbs, soil and aU, were carefuUy planted 
in late Fall in a frame and almost every one of them produced a 
fine plant the foUowing Summer and flowered. Lilium speciosum' 
album, the white form, while beautiful is not as hardy nor do we 
use anywhere near as many plants of it as we do of rubrums. 



Lilium candidum 

With Lilium giganteum and others which can be had' in 
flower almost the entire year available, L. candidum isn't much used 
by the florist. Yet it is of value, especially when grown outdoors 
in 5-ft. beds with temporary frames placed over them. Here one 
can get the flowers several weeks ahead of time. The retailer can 
always make use of the graceful flowers on long stems. Bulbs may 
also be potted in August or September, carried along in frames 
and later in a cool house. Placed in a temperature of 50 deg. by 
March, they wfll flower for Memorial Day or thereabouts. But they 
will not stand hard forcing like L. giganteum or L. Harrisii. 
To behold L. candidum at its best it should be planted in large 
clumps in the hardy border. 

The bulbs are usually offered in August and the less they lie 
about the better, for they are quite different from other Lilies. 



LILIES— HARDY SORTS 



425 



They apparently don't have a period of dormancy and therefore 
suffer when out of the soil. 

LiLIUM AURATUM 

This is, perhaps, the most showy of all hardy Lilies. Its large, 
dark-spotted flowers borne on heavy, tall stalks always attract 
attention. The bulbs reach us from Japan the same time those 
of L. speciosum do, and can be treated the same way. They will 
flower well in pots, yet the flowers are not as useful to the florist 
as those of L. speciosum. 

Other Hardy Lilies 

For permanent planting both Lilium iigrinum splendens and its 
double form { flora pleno) are exceUent and good even for cutting. 
Both are of an orange color. 

Lilium superbum, of reddish orange color, is also fine. Lilium 
Henryi has a dark yellow flower with brown spots ; it is also called 
the yellow speciosum. L. Hansonii is a fine orange-colored sort 
with dark spots, exceUent for outdoor planting. While some of 
our showiest hardy LiUes hail from Japan, L. regale (myriophyllum) 
came to us from China. With its large flowers, white overlaid 
with pink and with a yellow throat, it is one of the most stately 




Fig. 201.— Growing Habdy Lilies in Amemca. A block of hardy Lilies grown 

Ijy P. M. Koster in New Jersey and called by experts superior to many raised from 

imported Japanese bulbs. The plant in Mr. Koster's hand is a seedhng L. auratum, 

it flowered in eighteen months from seed 



426 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




of ail. Treated like L. 
speciosum rubrum or L. 
auratum, it appears to be as 
hardy as either and a most 
welcome addition to what 
we already have. It can 
also be grown and flowered 
in pots. 

LILY OF THE VALLEY 

The flowers of the Lily 
of the Valley are used the 
whole year around by the 
florist. With the help of 
cold storage facilities, the 
pips are available for forc- 
ing at any time and the 
great demand for the flowers 
has produced specialists 
ncEir the large flower markets 
in every section of the United 
States who force many thou- 
sands of pips and put a 
steady, daily supply of flow- 
ers on the market. Here, 
as in so many other lines, it no longer pays the retail grower 
to think about doing the forcing himself and making it pay, with 
the exception, perhaps, of doing it for special occasions Uke Christmas, 
St. Valentine's Day and Easter. Whether or not he uses cold storage 
pips, as is necessfiry for Christmas forcing, it is always well to allow 
about twenty-four days from the time the pips are put into sand 
until the flowers, or the majority of them, are ready to be cut. 

The speciahsts and large seed houses can supply you with any 
amount of cold storage pips just when they are wanted, which makes 
itr unnecessary for anyone to try and do the storing. 

For Christmas, pips should be planted in sand in the forcing 
frame or they may be potted up into 5- or 6-in. pots, using as many 
pips as a pot will hold and cutting the roots back if too long for the 
pots. Place the pots in theiorcing frame. This can be of any size, 
made oiit of l^-in.-wide Irfmber and fitted over a bench with sufficient 
bottom heat so as to create an 85-deg. temperature around the 
pips. The frame can be covered with a shutter or sash and should 
be covered so as to keep all light out for the first twelve days. It 
is a matter of heat, darkness and moisture. In order to produce 
three or four inches of growth supply these requirements and don't 



Fig. 202. — LiLiuM AURATUM. While not 
as valuable for the florist as some others, 
this .is one of the showiest of all hardy 
varieties and a fine companion for Lilium 
speciosum 



LILY OF THE VALLEY, LOBELIA 



427 



chill the young growth with cold water, but rather have it of the 
same temperature as the air in the frame. After ten or twelve 
days, let up a little on the heat and allow just a little Ught. By the 
twentieth day the first buds will be open; then more air and less 
heat should be given to properly finish them. 

Just what you use to plant the pips in matters Uttle; proper 
heat, moisture and shading have to do the work and that holds 
good with any you force. The later you force the easier it is and the 
less heat is required. For Easter almost any place will do for forcing. 
Six- and 7-in. pots or half pots filled full of pips and placed on the hot 
water returns twenty-four days before Easter will without much 
trouble develop into well-foliaged and well-flowered plants which 
will find ready sale. 

Here, as with everything else, we have failures as well as suc- 
cesses, and actual experience is necessary in order to become efficient, 
but you have only to force a few thousand in order to find out that 
except for the above-named special flower days, on which there is 
always an increased demand for VaUey, it is cheaper to purchase 
the cut flowers and that, no matter what they cost you, they are 
cheaper than you can yourself produce them on a smaU scale. 



LOBELIA 

Lobelias — the dwarf as 
weU as the trailing sorts 
— belong in your bedding 
stock assortment. The 
dwarf sorts are used for 
borders around beds, and 
the trailing ones are just 
the thing to hang over 
the edges of a porch box 
or lawn vase. Seed should 
be sown in January in 
order to obtain stock. 
The seedlings are so 
smaU and slow growing 
for the first weeks that it 
is hard to imagine them 
ever amounting to any- 
thing and many make the 
mistake of taking four or 
five of them in a bunch 
when transplanting them 
into flats or later in pot- 
ting them up. This will 
result in obtaining larger 



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Fie 203.— Lily of the Valley. It takes a 
splcialist to force Valley profitably during Mid- 
^ter. Toward Spring, however, even those 
with not the best of f aciUties can have nice pans 
kT bloom and seU them either mtact or as cut 
flowers 



428 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

plants in a shorter time, but there is no lasting quality to such 
stock. A far better way is to transplant or pot them up singly; 
they will then have a chance to branch out and develop into bushy 
specimens by the time you want them in May. 

Lobelias can also be propagated from cuttings. Lift a few 
plants from the field in the Fall; pot them up and carry them over 
in a cool house. A few plants will give you many hundreds of cut- 
gings. Kathryne Mallard, the double sort, does not grow from 
seed, but is a fine variety well worth having. 

Lobelia cardinalis is a handsome herbaceous plant for the hardy 
border, most effective when massed. It sends up slender stalks 
two to three feet tall covered with cardinal red blossoms. It is 
native to many sections of the United States and when you consider 
that more or less difficulty is often experienced in growing the plants 
on from seed with all possible care, one wonders how they become 
estabUshed in low places often under water during Winter and 
Spring. Yet there they are by the thousand, a mass of fire, more 
glowing than Salvias at their best. 

For flowering plants, sow in late Summer and, if possible, 
transplant early so as to obtain well established plarts by Fall. 
They will bloom the following year. There is no use planting Lobelias 
in dry locations; they want a lot of moisture and a light soil. 

LONICERA (HONEYSUCKLE) 

If you handle nursery stock and have a piece of land where you grow 
on a part of it, by all means cany enough Honeysuckles. For they 
always sell and there is hardly another flowering shrub that will 
get along with less care. It doesn't mind in what soil it is grown, 
where it is planted, or how you treat it; it seems to be ever ready to 
show its appreciation in a wealth of blossoms, most of them delightfully 
fragrant; or by covering itself with red berries all Summer, as is the case 
with L. bella albida or L. Morrowii. 

The best known of the Bush Honeysuckles is Lonicera iatarica, 
of which we have both a pink and a white sort. There are but few 
people who don't know a Tartarian Honeysuckle. You may see it as 
a specimen plant fifteen feet high, loaded down with flowers in June, 
but even when only two feet tall it is equally as well adapted for use 
as a hedge plant. Where you want to obtain a quick growth to 
screen a building or a backyard, there is nothing much better than 
the Tartarian Honeysuckle. 

L. bella albida can best be appreciated when given all the room 
it needs to grow into a large specimen. To my mind it should 
never be planted in massesor groups, but should be given from ten to 
twelve feet to grow in. You never see it at its best except when alone. 



LONICERA, LUPINUS 429 

Lonicera Halliana or Hall's Climbing Honeysuckle is one of the 
best of hardy climbers, a clean, rank grower covered with fragrant 
white flowers changing to yellow, and holding its foUage long after 
the frost has stripped most other climbers. 

L. sempervirens we know best as Scarlet Trumpet Honeysuckle. 
It is an excellent hardy sort, flowering aU Summer and, when once 
well established, a free grower. The Golden sort is also most at- 
tractive, but a slower grower. 

LOVE-IN-A-MIST 

See Nigella 

LUPINUS 
Both the annual as weU as the perennial Lupines are of value 
to the florist. Both, when well grown and with good spikes covered 
with their Pea-shaped flowers in white, rose, light and deep bluCj 
make excellent cut flowers. Some growers speciahze on Lupines 
under glass and produce enormous spikes which retail at a high price. 

Perennial Sorts 

These are not always a 
success with every one and 
the plants often are injured 
during a severe Winter. They 
must be sown early, say in 
June, and planted in well 
drained yet moist soil. They 
bloom in late June and when 
massed, if they have not suf- 
fered, they make a grand 
showing. Whenever possible, 
if you have plants of your 
own, it is better to fiU your 
orders for them in early 
Spring, than to take chances 
with transplanting them in 
late FaU. 

Lupines Under Glass 
The annual sorts are fine 
for forcing or flowering under 
glass. For an early crop, sow 
seed in September or Octo- 
ber; pot up later on and per- 
haps shift, so as to have well 
established 3)^- or 4-in. 
plants by January. They 
can be planted in a solid bed. 




Fig. 204. — Lupines in a Border. How 
can people help but fall in love with her- 
baceous plants when it is possible to create 
such a pleasing setting as this ? Of course, 
the Lupines will not last all Sununer, but 
what could take their place for the tune 
they are with us ? 



430 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 205. — Lupines Grown Under Glass. 

Sown in late Fall and grown in a solid bed 

in a cool house they give desirable cut 

flowers from early March on 



in fact, this is better than 
making use of a bench. 
Allow from twelve to four- 
teen inches of space between 
them. A house of 45 to 48 
deg. is sufficient. The first 
spikes ready to cut in March 
will, perhaps, be the largest, 
but the side shoots coming 
up from the base of the 
plants will form the second 
crop and will be fully as 
valuable if not more valuable 
to you. If you desire a good 
lot of spikes during May, sow 
seed in January and plant 
out about March. 

For Summer Flowering 

Plants from seed sown 
in March carried along in 
2j^-in. pots and planted in 
a frame by the end of April 
will produce flowers in June. 
Every florist selling bedding 



stock can dispose of Lupines during the Spring months and should 
prepare a good number of plants for that purpose. 

You can get Lupines to flower from seed sown early outdoors, 
but when they don't start to flower until the middle of July it is 
too |iot to obtain good sized spikes. 

LYCHNIS 

There are a number of showy forms of Lychnis adapted for 
the hardy border, but one of the easiest to grow is Lychnis Haageana 
hyhrida. If sown in February, under glass, and planted out by the 
end of April, the plants with their orange, red, and deep scarlet 
flowers will be in full bloom by June. They can be cut, but are of 
no great value to the florist except as material to sell, as field plants, 
along with other hardy stock in Spring and Fall. 

LYCIUM BARBARUM (MATRIMONY VINE) 

If you have a call for a vine or climber that will grow anywhere 
and in any soil and faster than others, that is the time to recom- 
mend the Matrimony Vine, good for trellis, arbor, tree stumps and 
edges of ravines or hard clay banks. 



LYCIUM, MARGUERITES 



431 



Your nurseryman will supply plants and when you set them, 
cut them back severely; the young growth produces little purplish 
flowers followed by berries that turn red in Fall and remain a long 
time on the plants. 

MAIDENHAIR FERN 
See Adianlum 

MAPLE, JAPANESE 

See Acer 

MARIGOLD 

See Tagetes 

MARGUERITES (CHRYSANTHEMUM FRUTESCENS) 

The old favorite called Paris Daisy has been almost entirely 
replaced by larger and better sorts, of which Mrs. Sanders is perhaps 
the best known. Still we continue to make use of the old sort which, 
grown into a large specimen with a mass of bloom, makes a desirable 




Fig. 206.-A Specimen Mabguerite. There is bttle chance for the f "^^^^ Pans 

Daisy when the newer Marguerites can easily be gvomi into plwits o^^^^ °^ 

Nicholson's White; Boston YeUow is also popular for indoor flowering 



432 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

Easter plant. Boston Yellow, which is a good strain of that 
color, makes a profitable indoor crop to grow for Winter and 
Spring and there are growers who do it successfully either planted 
out on benches, in solid beds, or in large pots. With pots, however, 
there is apt to be a lack of stem. On the other hand, you can cut 
earlier flowers from such plants than from those planted out where 
they haven't a chance to become potbound. Another way to make 
them flower is to grow them in pots, enlarging the hole in the bottom 
a little, and plunging the pots up to the rim in soil. 

For Winter flowering, a Carnation house temperature is about 
right and it is well to start in Fall with established pot plants. For 
Spring, use plants such as you want for window or porch boxes. 
Cuttings should be rooted during late Fall and Winter and the 
plants kept shifted up to April. For Easter flowering in pots, 
you can take 23^-in. stock in flower and make up showy pans; or 
cuttings rooted in late Summer may be grown on in a cool house, 
keeping the plants shifted until they get into 5-, 6-, and 7-in. pots. 




Fig. 207.— A House of Feverfew. This is the way Nelson of Framingham, Mass., 
grows Feverfew for early Spring. To get a crop like this in time for Mother's Day 

is well worth trying 



MARGUERITE, MATRICARIA, MAURANDIA 433 

After that, instead of giving another shift, feed them every three 
weeks or so with liquid cow manure. 

The variety Mrs. F. Sanders also makes a fine Summer bloomer 
when planted outdoors. You can recommend it as such and even 
plant a few yourself. 

MATRICARIA CAPENSIS ALBA PLENE (DOUBLE 
FEVERFEW) 

The double Feverfew in years past could be found in every 
retail grower's establishment; every window contained a few plants 
and they were considered indispensable as sources of cut flowers 
during Summer. It is still grown, but not so extensively. 

It pays best as a catch crop for April and May flowering, for 
which purpose carry a few stock plants in a cool house, and take 
cuttings during January. Plant out on a bench twelve inches apart 
and pinch back the center shoots. A few can also be grown on in 
pots, and sold during the bedding season or planted outdoors. The 
trouble with them in window boxes is that they don't remain in 
condition long enough; but as a cut flower they are useful at any 
time. They also can be grown from seed, but usually there are too 
many singles among such plants 



MATRIMONY VINE 

See Lycium 

MAURANDIA BARCLAIANA 

The Maurandias are grace- 
ful little chmbers of special 
value for wire hanging baskets. 
Seed sown in late February will 
give heavy 2j/^-in. pot plants 
by the end of April when they 
should be planted in the 
baskets and the latter hung up. 
By fastening the vines with 
hairpins on the sides of the 
baskets, you can have perfect 
balls of green by Memorial Day 
and also have the handles cov- 
ered. Later on the httle blue 
flowers will appear and help to 
make the baskets still more at- 
tractive. A half shady position 
will suit them best when grown 
in baskets during Summer. 




Fig. 208. — ^Feverfew. A "close-up" of 

indoor-grown Matricaria which can be 

made a paying crop during the Spnng 

months 



434 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 209. — Feverfew Outdoors. Showing how 

bright and attractive a cliunp can be, either 

alone or with flowers of contrasting colors 



April. 



MEADOW RUE 

See Thalidrum 

MERTENSIA 

VIRGINICA 

(BLUE BELLS) 

The Virginia Blue 
Bells are fine for planting 
along the margin of a 
ravine, for edging a shady 
shrubbery border, or for 
naturalizing. Their foKage 
dies down diu-ing Summer, 
and in cultivated beds or 
borders this should be 
provided for. 

They have flower 
spikes about a foot in 
height, which usually are 
full of clusters of blue 
flowers toward the end of 
That is the reason your patrons will want them. Get a 
good sized batch started and it will furnish you with plenty of stock, 
as the plants are increased by division of the roots in Fall. 

MESEMBRYANTHEMUM CORDIFOLIUM ROSEUM 

That seems an awfully long name for such a little plant even 
though it is most useful during the bedding season. It has dark 
green, fleshy leaves with star-shaped, glistening pink flowers, re- 
minding one of a miniature Cactus blossom. Almost everyone who 
comes to your establishment will admire it and weU-fiUed hanging 
baskets with the plants drooping over the sides will always find 
purchasers. The plants can also be used in the rockery to good 
effect. Carry a few stock plants in pots over Winter in a cool house; 
these will furnish you with quantities of cuttings which root easily. 

METROSIDEROS ROBUSTA (BOTTLE BRUSH) 

The Metrosideros are among the showiest of Easter plants. 
With their fine foliage and spikes of small, reddish flowers they 
always attract attention among other stock in the show house. 
We used to import them from Europe, but I doubt whether there 
was ever any real dollars and cents profit for the smaller florist in 
handUng them. However, with them as with a number of other 
plants, they pay us well in the show they make, thereby helping to 
sell other stock. It would take too long to raise plants from cuttings, 
but if you can get hold of some bushy 6- or 7-in. pot specimens 



METROSIDEROS, MIMOSA, MIMULUS 



435 



consider carrying a few in a cool house and bringing them into a 
52-deg. house five weeks or so before Easter if you want them in 
bloom at that time. As to leftover plants, cut them back and handle 
them almost like Azaleas. 

MICHAELMAS DAISY 

See Aster 

MIGNONETTE 

See Reseda 

MIMOSA PUDIGA (SENSITIVE PLANT) 
Of the plants which always attract attention, the Sensitive 
Plant is one. Almost every patron visiting your establishment is 
usually interested when requested to touch the . leaves and see 
them close up and droop. A good way to advertise is to give a few 
of these plants away to children who happen to come in. No matter 
where these plants land, they are bound to make people talk about 
you and that is what you want. 

Sow seed in a warm house about March and you will have nice 
plants in 2}4s during the bedding season. A few can be shifted 
and carried all Summer in the show house. 

MIMULUS MOSGHATUS (MUSK PLANT) 

This makes a fine companion for Mimosa pudica (see above), 
and a few plants should be carried during the Spring and Summer 
months by the retail grower, if for no other reason than the delight- 
ful odor or fragrance of their leaves. Aside from that, a plant in a 5-in. 
pot will, if given a chance, cover the sides of the pot completely, 
producing at the same time a lot of little single yellow blossoms. 
If you are looking for something to attract attention, sow a package 
of seed about February and grow the plants on in a 55-deg. house. 

MIMULUS TIGRINUS (MONKEY FLOWER) 
This is a funny name for this flower and I don't see where 
the resemblance comes in. The beautifully colored and spotted 
flowers resemble far more closely miniature Gloxinias or Gesnerias 
than monkeys. However, they are easily grown from seed sown in 
February, the plants being carried in a 50-deg. house. I am sure if 
you have a batch of them in fuU bloom in 4s by the end of May, 
you wiU sell them all. They can also be planted out in shaded posi- 
tions to flower all Summer, but they cannot be caUed ideal bedders. 

MOGK ORANGE 

See Philadelphus 

MONARDA DIDYMA (MINT) 
Monarda didyma, or Cambridge Scarlet, has very showy, 
brilliant, deep scarlet flower heads during Midsummer, agamst a 



436 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




setting of dark green foliage 
with the real Mint fragrance. 
As with the common Horse 
Mint, if you have a few clumps 
established and have call for 
the plants, you can take up 
small divisions to fill your orders 
with. The thing is to have some 
on hand if you handle hardy 
stock at all. For mass effect 
in a perennial border they are 
especially to be recommended. 

MONKEY FLOWER 

See Mimulus 

MONKSHOOD 

See Aconitum 

MONTBRETIA 

Montbretias, while not of 
much value to the florist, are 
showy plants when grouped in 
masses among the perennials. 
The bulbs can be planted in 
Fall, or, what is safer, in Spring. 
There are some very showy 
sorts, mostly coming in yellow and orange shades and a few in 
orange-scarlet. The most satisfactory way is to start the bulbs 
in the greenhouse in gentle heat and have plants well ad- 
vanced,. ready for bedding, in May the same as one would do with 
Gannas or Caladiums. America is a fine deep orange red, California 
is a pure yellow, and Ernest Davison a light orange, and all will 
flower during Midsummer and grow about three feet high. While 
the spikes can be used for decorating, they are not much used as 
cut flowers. If bulbs are left in the open they will overwinter but 
they need a good covering. 

MOONVINE 

See Ipomoea grandiflora 

MOUNTAIN CURRANT 

See Ribes 

MUSCARI BOTRYOIDES (GRAPE HYACINTHS) 

The little blue and white Grape Hyacinths are fine for natural- 
izing and form good companions for the Virginia Blue Bells in that 
respect. They come in blue, rose, yellow, and white and grow from 



Fig. 210. — Myosotis, to which the 
florist who retails his crops should always 
devote part of a bench in a cool house. 
There is hardly a flower combination 
sent out in a box that could not include 
a few sprays 



MUSCARI, MYOSOTIS, NARCISSUS 437 

bulbs which we used to get from Holland in Fall along with our 
other stock. Hyacinthus monstrosus is the blue-feathered Hyacinth 
growing less than six inches in height and fine for the edge of shrlib 
beds. Another desirable variety belonging to the hardy border is 
H. moschatus major, the musk-scented Hyacinth. 

' MUSK PLANT 

See Mimulus 

MYOSOTIS (FORGET-ME-NOT) 

There are a number of kinds of Myosotis— blue-, white-, and 
pink-flowering, all of which are among the early Spring-flowering 
plants that the florist carries for bedding. M. alpe'stris Royal 
Blue is the best real blue. Sow seed of it at the same time the 
Pansies and English Daisies go out, that is, during late July or early 
August. Transplant the seedlings about four inches apart in frames 
where they will flower the following Spring. 

M. dissitiflora grows only about six inches in height and if 
overwintered in frames where you can get at them, the plants can 
be lifted about four weeks or so before Easter and potted up to 
provide a mass of beautiful large blue flowers. 

For Indoor Flowering 

Good strains of indoor-flowering Myosotis have been worked 
up and these are propagated through cuttings which root at any 
time of the year as quickly and as easfly as German Ivy. A good 
way is to root a batch during Summer and carry the young stock 
in aj/^s until ready for benching. The average retail grower doesn't 
want a whole bench full; a few feet wiU give him all the flowers he 
wants during the Winter months. Another way is to plant a few 
along the edge of a Carnation bench. 

MYRTLE 

See Vinca 

NARCISSUS 

A MONG the most important bulb stock the florist makes use 
^ of the Narcissi come next to the Tulips. Almost every variety 
listed — and there are many — can be used either in a cut state or 
for pot plants and in most cases for both. No retail grower can 
do business without Narcissi. Indeed, in spite of the fact that 
they are so well known aU over this country and Europe and have 
been grown for so many years, they deserve more attention as 
money makers when grown under glass. At present there are 
far too many who still cling to the old way of making use of two or 
three varieties, planting 1000 of each, having them come m practi- 



438 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 





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Fig. 211. — A Mass Planting of Forget-Me-Nots hard to beat for effectiveness. 
Several fine Spring-flowering varieties sown in early August and treated like Pansies 
are fine for bedding; later they can be replaced with Geraniums or other bedding 

plants 

cally all at the same time and letting it go at that. That is a hit 
or miss way, makes but a poor effect on the pubUc, and often does 
not return the original price of the bulbs. 

I am sure that a good profit is assured almost every florist 
forcing Narcissi who arranges things so as to have a small but steady 
supply of flowers coming in from November on, up to, and after 
Easter indoors, and from that time on again in frames and outdoors 
until the last poeticus flowers are cut — usually some time in May. 



NARCISSI 439 

After all, it is a simple matter, yet with many it would mean growing 
ten times as many bulbs and making ten times as much money 
from them. You may not be able to make Roses and Carnations 
pay, but I have yet to see the establishment so small or old that it 
isn't possible to do Narcissi there on a small scale better than the 
biggest bulb forcer can do them in the most uptodate range and 
with all kinds of facilities. 

Forcing Narcissi for Profit 

To make the most out of the Narcissi you grow under glass, 
make out a list of the Polyanthus sorts, such as Paperwhites, Grand 
Soleil d'Or, Double Romans and others you may want, then figure 
about how many you can use each week from the end of November 
or thereabouts up to February first. Add twenty-five per cent 
more to that amount and place your order. When the bulbs are 
planted and brought into a house, make it a rule not to subject 
them to any greater degree of heat than you started out to do, 
so as to be sure to follow your original schedule. There is no harm 
in having to purchase flowers should occasions demand this; in 
fact, it is a far better thing than to be caught with flats full of 
stock ready to be cut but for which you have no use. 

While we haven't always control over weather conditions 
and temperature, a whole lot can be done to avoid having too many 
flowers come in at one time and then having no flowers at all for the 
several weeks following. 

What holds good with the Polyanthus varieties holds good 
with the others in regard to figuring out the amount of stock you 
can use. AU other sorts, outside of the Polyanthus, can freeze 
when once well rooted and kept outdoors; yet freezing is not neces- 
sary in order to have them force weU. In fact, too much freezing 
will, or at least may, hurt them, so see to it that the flats or pans the 
bulbs are in are not only moist, but are well protected with a layer 
of earth over them as weU as manure or straw on top of the earth. 
If you are located in a section where several feet of snow in January 
is nothing uncommon, I should place boards over the straw to make 
shoveling easier. 

Narcissi in Frames 
It doesn't pay the retail grower to plant 1000 or more of one 
variety of Narcissus (with the exception perhaps of ^V. poeticus) 
outdoors and place frames and glass over them for early Spring 
flowering. The flowers don't last long enough to permit you to 
grow on so many of one variety and dispose of them. What is, 
however, a good way is to plant just a few — say eight or ten sorts— 
both single and double; they will not aU bloom at the same time and 
no doubt will come in handy. 



440 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




If you plant N. poeticus in a 
5-ft.-wide bed, a part of the 
bed may be covered with a 
frame and the flowers be had 
ten days or so earlier, which 
also pays. 

Paperwhites for Early 
Forcing 

The Narcissi are divided 
according to their flowers into 
three classes: short, medium, 
and long trumpet varieties. 
Among the shorts, Paperwhite 
is the best known and most 
used, and it is especially 
adapted for early forcing. 

Paperwhites, Grand Soleil 
d'Or, Double Romans, Grand 

„ Monarque, Her Majesty and 
Fig. 212. — ^Narcissus Henry Irving. .1/ 1 .i, i. i 

TMs is one of our many fine Narcissi for more than a dozen others belong 
either forcing under glass or planting out- to this same class which we 
^°°''^ know as the Polyanthus Nar- 

cissi. None of them is hardy 
but all are good for early forcing. Paperwhites are best planted 
in 3-in.-deep flats. When forcing on a small scale, allow a little 
space between the bulbs; the first batch is just as well off in a frame 
with a little shade as indoors. If planted in September, bring in the 
first lot by the middle of October. 

If allowed to come along in a Carnation house, they wiU start 
to flower by the middle of November, and it will be well in December 
before they are all cut. For Christmas, plant about the same time, 
but keep the plants cool until the end of November; the cooler 
they are kept and the less forcing you do, the better the flowers. 
It is up to about the end of January that Paperwhites pay best; 
after that Freesias, white Tulips and other flowers are preferred 
by your customers who are then ready for the change. This is not 
to say that for funeral design work you cannot use the Paperwhites 
to best advantage, but their strong odor is often offensive. Yet 
most people overlook that during December, for the flowers are new 
to them and a change from Chrysanthemums, Roses, or Carnations 
is welcome. If you grow them in bulb pans and have them weU 
done, you will find a sale for them around Christmas. 

With a scarcity of other flowers you can lift plants just coming 
into flower out of the flats and use them in made-up arrangements 



NARCISSUS 



441 




in baskets. Not everyone 
would want such a combina- 
tion, but some individuals 
think it just right. 

Make three or four plant- 
ings of bulbs, having the main 
crop come on during December; 
if for any reason you have to 
make use of strong heat in 
flowering them, by all means 
bring them in to a cool place as 
soon as possible. The same 
holds good with flats partly cut 
over for Christmas; you can 
keep them in fine shape for 
many days in a cool, shaded 
place, while in a hot house they 
will soon give out. 

Narcissus Grand Soleil d'Oh 

This is the earliest of the 
yellow Polyanthus Narcissi, and 
therefore is highly desirable 
around Christmas. While red 
is the color, many of your 

customers will look upon these yellow Narcissi with favor and 
consider them in a way Spring-like; they require about the 
same treatment as the Paperwhites, only some years we have 
to give them a little more heat in order to get them in; other 
years we have no trouble at all. It is a matter of keeping your 
eyes open. T^he plants should show color by the tenth of December 
if you want them in by Christmas; and if by the first of December 
they appear slow and axe in a 50-deg. house, let them have a higher 
temperature. 

This sort also will come in handy for baskets around Christmas, 
its odor being sweet and quite the opposite of that of the Paper- 
whites. Its easy culture, desirable color, and the fact that it is 
among the first to flower, make it an important variety, especially 
for the smaller florist who doesn't wish to tackle some of the larger- 
flowering sorts. 

Double Roman Narcissi 

I mention this variety because it is a white with double orange 
center and can be had in flower by Christmas. It is as sweet-scented 
as Grand Soleil d'Or and fine for cutting. Those who grow Paper- 



Fig. 213. — Narcissus "Yellow Phoe- 
nix," a fine sort for late forcing, and also 
good for cutting or to grow -in pans for 
Easter 



442 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 214. — A Narcissus Border. Encourage the Fall planting of bulb stock out- 
doors; the blooms appear long before the trees and shrubs show much sign of life. 
To be most effective, bulbs should be planted in masses, as here 



whites should always force at least a few double Romans as cut 
flowers around Christmas when, ordinarily, they are not too plentiful. 

Trumpet Major and Golden Spur for Second Early Forcing 

The French-grown Trumpet Major Narcissus is the most 
widely used for forcing for Christmas and the weeks following. 
While by no means one of the largest, it belongs to the large trumpet 
sorts and is of yellow color throughout. If you plan to subject it to 
heat, to obtain flowers on fair stems you must have well-rooted 
stock to start with. Otherwise the forcing will prove a failure. 
Even with heavily rooted stock, a dark, hot place for forcing and 
the very best of care, the results are not always satisfactory. Of 
the first or earUest batches frequently only a very small percentage 
of good flowers is cut. 

To my mind it doesn't pay the retail grower to force these 
Narcissi too early. Let the specialist do it. And when you pay 
him a high price for the flowers, you are not paying one bit too 
much. For even if he is successful with one batch, he runs big 
chances and is bound to have bad luck with another batch. It is 
due to this uncertainty that I suggest that the man who just uses 



NARCISSUS 443 

a few extra early yellow Narcissi and these mostly for their color, 
use Grand Soleil d'Or instead. 

Whether for extra early or later forcing, plant the bulbs as soon 
as you can in flats and carry them along outdoors, covered over 
with a few inches of soil and always kept moist. The ones intended 
for extra early should go inside by the end of November and if well 
rooted can be brought into heat and a dark place at once. For 
gentle forcing, a temporary enclosure may be built below a bench of 
boards and burlap so as to keep the light out and the heat in. The 
speciahst makes use of a regular forcing frame, with sufficient heat- 
ing pipes to maintain almost any desired temperature. The inside 
of the frame is pitch dark when it is shut up. 

In Golden Spur we have what is the most popular of all single 
large-flowering Narcissi. Its fine, deep yellow color, good stem and 
easy forcing qualities make it so. Not only is the variety good 
for January flowering, but many growers also use it up to Easter. 

To those who are not overanxious to obtain extra early flowers 
but are satisfied to get in the first batch about January fifteenth 
and cut the greatest number of perfect flowers from a flat, I would 
suggest planting early and putting the first lot of flats indoors, 
below a Carnation house bench, about the middle of December. 
If you can arrange it so as to place the flats on the ground, having 
the heating pipes a foot or so above them, so much the better. 
Darken the place and always see to it that the soil in the flats is 
kept moist. I might say "wet," for in this case it is better to have 
it wet than not moist enough. You can maintain a temperature 
of 80 deg. or more as long as neither the roots nor the tops come 
in contact with the heating pipes. Starting out with sound bulbs, 
planting them early, using nothing but thoroughly rooted stock 
and never aUowing the soil to dry out, wiU usually mean ninety- 
five per cent or more of perfect flowers. 

Plant a few bulbs in bulb pans. You can always seU them when 
in flower. While you can lift the plants out of the flats, the flowers 
win last twice as long if the bulbs haven't been disturbed. 

Other Large Trumpet Narcissi 

Some of the grandest of all Narcissi are among the large single 
trumpet varieties, but mainly on account of the price of the bulbs 
the florist cannot always make them pay. However, there are a 
few which should be forced and can be handled profitably. Among 
them are Bicolor Victoria, Emperor, Empress, Glory ot Leiden 
(which is a giant yellow throughout). Glory of Nordwyk, WiUie 
Barr, Giant Princeps (a fine forcer), Mme. De Graff and Mme. 
Plemp. 



444 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Double Narcissus 
Von Sign 

Next in importance to 
the florist, and also adap- 
ted for January flowering 
is the double Von Sion, 
better known as the 
double Daffodil. This 
variety, like the Golden 
Spur, responds freely to 
heat and we can have it 
coming in toward the end 
of January; but a well- 
grown pan of Daffodils is 
never more appreciated 
than around Easter and 
it is for that time that a 
good batch of stock should 
be put aside. 

No florist with a re- 
tail trade can make a 
mistake by having one 
or more flats of Daffodils to cut from each week from the end 
of January on. When the buds begin to turn yellow, move the 
flats to cool, shaded spots and let them develop slowly. There is a 
great difference between those so treated and those kept in a hot 
house. 

I don't know but what, for the smaller grower, it isn't just as 
well to make use of bulb pans entirely for what Daffodils he plants. 
There is always a chance of his disposing of such pans when in 
flower and if he does not sell them that way, he can cut the blooms. 

Sulphur Phcenix and other Double Sorts 

Sulphur Phoenix is a splendid variety and both it and Orange 
Phoenix are fine for cutting; they also stand moderate forcing. N. 
alba plena odorata, the double Poeticus, can only be grown in the 
open ground where it requires a moist situation. 



Fig. 215. — Emperor Narcissus.. Emperor and 
Empress Narcissi make stumung pans for Easter, 
but they must be planted early and grown in a 
cool house or they wiU grow too taU and demand 
support 



Short and Medium Trumpet Narcissi 

Among these are several which make fine pans and are equally 
desirable for cutting. Leedsii White Lady, with pure white petals 
and a yeUow cup, makes a fine cut flower; Leedsii Mrs. Langtry is 
just as good; so are Barrii Lady Godiva (white petals and yellow 
cup edged with orange), incomparabilis Autocrat (yellow perianth 



NARCISSUS, NEMESIA 



445 



and deeper yellow cup) and in- 
comparabilis Sir Watkin, the 
largest of the medium class, 
with yellow petals and a deeper 
yellow colored cup. 

Poet's and Poetaz Narcissi 

For outdoor planting in 
particular do we use the Poet's 
Narcissi "and it will pay every 
florist to get a long row or bed 
of them estabhshed. They will 
flower each Spring, providing a 
mass of bloom and furnishing 
excellent material, especially 
for design work. Poeticus 
ornatus is good for forcing and 
the bulbs are cheap enough so 
that you can make money out 
of them. Poeticus King Ed- 
ward is an improvement on 
ornatus, has a larger flower, 
and is also a good forcer. 
Poetaz Elvira is a cross be- 
tween ornatus and polyanthus, 
but perfectly hardy and as effective for mass planting 
the poeticus group. 




Fig. 216. — ^Nahcissus Posticus. It will 
pay almost any retail florist to plant a 
few rows of the Poet's Narcissus. Once 
established these bulbs will flower each 
Spring for years 



as any of 



Narcissus Jonquilla (Jonquils) 

The Jonquils make a more slender growth than the other Narcissi 
and their sweet-scented double and single flowers come in clusters. 
Practically all of them are hardy and can also be flowered nicely 
under glass. TV. rugulosus, especiaUy, is good, while A^. rugulosiis pleno 
is a good double. 

NEMESIA 

As a Summer-blooming annual this isn't of great value to the 
florist, but when grown under glass, flowering in early Spring, he 
has good use for it. Sow the seed about the middle of January, 
either on a bench or in a flat and transplant later on. It will 
produce its little blue, orange, and pink orchid-shaped flowers 
during April. For outside effects sow early in rows and thin out 
later on. 



FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

NEPETA GLECHOMA VARIEGATA (VARIEGATED 
GROUND IVY) 

This is one of the handsomest of the small-leaved climbers. 

With its beautifully variegated 
Ivy-hke leaves it is especially well 
adapted for the rockery, for filling 
hanging baskets or to go along the 
edge of vases and porch boxes. 
While rank growers during Spring 
and Summer, the plants are ab- 
solutely at a standstill during 
Winter. If you grow a few on 
for stock in pots, they will by 
Fall have formed a regular mat, 
covering any sized pot. Place 
them in a coldframe or Violet 
house; by early March divide 
them into small pieces and pot 
them up into 23^s. Every one, 
if shifted later on, will make a 
bushy plant for which yoii wiU 
find good use. 




NIEREMBERGIA 
FLOWER) 



(GUP 



Fig. 217. — Nepeta glbchoma. The 
variegated Glechoma or Grotind Ivy 
makes an excellent trailing plant for 
Hanging baskets, vases, etc. This is a 
plant in a 4-in. pot three months after 
the cuttings were rooted, four of them 
to a 2j^-in. pot 



Nierembergias make fine trail- 
ing, flowering plants for vases, 
baskets and porch boxes. They 
come with blue and with white 
flowers on wiry stems. There 
was a time when almost every 
vase or rustic tub fifled with plants 
had a few of them in the assort- 
ment, but today we have most 
caU for either red or pink effects, 
and vases and boxes are usually 
fiUed with j ust one thing which may 
be Geraniums or Petunias. Here 
and there, however, we find a 
customer who prefers a good assort- 
ment and that is the time you 
can use Nierembergias. Sow 
seed about November and carry 
the plants along in a cool 
house, shifting them several 
times. N. frutescens is the blue. 



NIEREMBERGIA, NIGELLA 



447 



and N. gracilis the white form. TV. rivularis, with white flowers, 
is a good creeping perennial for the rockery. 

NIGELLA (LOVE-IN-A-MIST) 

The Nigellas belong to the Summer-flowering annuals and 
when planted in masses, with their finely cut, dense foliage and 
light blue flowers such as the variety Miss JekyU has, they are 
very attractive. They can also be used as cut flowers and a well- 
filled bowl in your cooler will surely be commented on by your 
customers. Nigellas can also be grown under glass for Spring flow- 
ering, requiring the same treatment as Nemesias. 

NORFOLK ISLAND PINE 

See Araucaria 




Fig. 218.— Nymph,«lvs. These are the most popular of all aquatics; and the hardy 
vEirieties are of the easiest culture 



448 



FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



NYMPH^AS AND NELUMBIUMS 

To grow on Nymphaeas and Nelumbiums is a business by itself. 
We have good firms in the country that specialize in these as well 
as aU other so-called aquatics, supplying anything from Wild Rice 
aiid Lizzard's Tail up to Victorias. More than that, they not only 
publish lists of all the desirable varieties, but also give full, descrip- 
tions of each of them. The florist who does landscape work is bound 
to have calls for such stock and to be asked for information about 
it. Getting acquainted with the principal varieties of the hardy, 
tender, and night-blooming Nymphaeas, the Lotus and its require- 
ments,' the Water Hyacinths, the Water Poppies and the showy, 
variegated Flag is, therefore, absolutely necessary. The knowledge 
comes in mighty handy, but to write about it here would mean merely 
copying what others have told before. However, as stated in 
Chapter YII on Aquatics* any one interested in this Uhe will find 
good, helpful reading in "Plant Culture," by Geo. W. Oliver. 

ORANGE, OTAHEITE 

See Otaheite Orange 

ORCHARD GRASS 

See Ornamental Grasses 

ORCHIDS 

There are good books on 
the culture of orchids and 
neither could I write anything 
about them which hasn't been 
told before, nor do I consider 
this subject of value to the 
average retail grower. With 
him orchid culture doesn't 
mean anything, for he would 
not find it profitable to take 
it up. His time is occupied 
with other things and he can 
always, even when located far 
away from the flower markets 
of the country, have the out 
blooms shipped to him. Even 

if on the road a long time, they will usually last in good conditioli 

for many days. 

But what, I do believe wiU pay any florist is to carry a few 
orchids, whether they consist of Cypripedium insigne, which is 
easily handled in a 50-deg. house and is perhaps the best known, 
or Cattleya Trianse, which also can be carried in a 50- to 55-deg. 




Fig. 219. — The Eter-usbful Orchid in 

A Wreath, Of all floral designs this style 

wreath is in greatest demand. The orchids 

add. a desirable sumptuous touch 



ORCHIDS 



449 




Fig. 220. — Gattleya Trian^. This is one of the most popular of all the Cattleyas 
the florist uses. A plant in bloom in your show house, even if not perfect, wiU always 
attract attention. But this is the only way you can make orchids pay on a small 

scale 





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Fig. 221.— Dendrobium nobile. The Dendrobiums are among the showiest of 
orchids and should make up a good proportion of and have a promment place m 

_^ every _ collection 



450 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




house, or Dendro-' 
bium hobile, which, 
while requiring a 
little warmer 
house, can also 
stand a lot of 
abuse and still live 
and flower, 

I have seen 
all of the aBove 
carried for years, 
remaining alive 
and even flowering 
with absolutely no 
care other thaii 
regular watering, 
the Cattleyas and 
Dendrobiums get- 
ting a little fresh 
Sphagnum moss 
now and then, and 
the Cypripediums 
an occasional shift. 
What I want to get at is this: The average patron, visiting the 
establishment of the local florist, expects to find everything there 
that grows. The mere fact that you can say you have orchids and 
point your finger to a pan of Cattleyas suspended from a purUne, 
or have a specimen, with or without foliage, in bloom during the 
Winter or Spring months, is bound to have great weight with a 
visitor. 

You should be able to show what an orchid plant looks Uke; 
it is expected of you if you retail flowers. I don't care how poor or 
how good the plants are that you carry, so long as you have some 
even if only a half-dozen. If they die, get more and charge it up to 
the advertising expense account. 

To make money with orchids you must not only be equipped 
for it and have the proper facilities to handle the plants, but you 
must also have a full stock and it will take all of your time to attend 
to them. In other words, you can't make a side line out of them. 



Fig. 222. — Gyhbidium Pau welsh. The keeping quali- 
ties of this species are indicated by these flowers which, 
grown in Belgium, were shown at the 1921 New York 
Show in March and again at Boston in April, stfll in prime 
condition 



ORNAMENTAL GRASSES 

The florist should be acquainted with at least a few varieties 
of hardy grasses for they belong in the home grounds whether 
planted in groups or singly as specimens ; whether along the edge of 
the pool or water garden, in the rockery, or as a clump in the shrub- 
bery border. While perhaps not used extensively on small grounds, 



ORNAMENTAL GRASSES 



451 




Fig. 223. — Ohnambntal Grasses, The Eulalias and other hardy grasses are fine 

in large groups on extensive lawns, but they are really more at home planted near 

the Lily pond or in the water garden 



yet we have calls for such stock and if you have the space for a few 
plants, when once they are estabhshed you will always have a 
supply to draw from, as most of these plants are easily increased 
through division which is best done in early Spring. 

Arundo Donax (Giant Reed) 

This grass is only used for mass planting. It will grow fifteen 
feet and over if given good soil and plenty of moisture; it flowers 
in early Fall. 

Dactylis glomerata variegata (Variegated Orchard Grass) 

This is, perhaps, the most common of all ornamental hardy 
grasses, yet because of its beautiful variegated blades or leaves, 
and its ability to grow and thrive where nothing else will, it is highly 
desirable. You have seen it in the farmyard, in the old rock pile, 
along the fence and in the old-fashioned hardy border. After 
everything else has passed away through neglect, this grass will keep 
on coming up each Spring and as much variegated as ever. A good- 
sized clump somewhere will give you a chance to sell plants each 
year and there is always someone who will want a few. 



452 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



Ebianthus Ravenna 
(Pampas Grass) 

There is nothing finer 
in hardy grasses than this, 
especially if one wants 
plants for single specimens. 
It will, in a short time, 
grow into fine clumps with 
graceful narrow leaves, 
producing great flower 
heads or plumes. It can 
stand a little protection 
over Winter. 

Eulalia 

The Eulalias are a- 
mong the most popular of 
hardy grasses and make 
fine beds all by themselves. 
E. gracillima with its 5-ft. 
narrow green leaves, each 
with a white rib along the 
center, is very effective. 
E. japonica is of somewhat 
stronger habit than the 
others and with leaves 

striped crosswise; this will go well with either of the others if 

planted in the center of the bed. 




Fig. 224. — ^Pennisetum longistylum. It is 
diSicult to find the foliage on these plants. They 
make a decidedly different hedge, and for a 
border around the Canna bed you could hardly 
find anything more fitting 



Pennisetum (Fountain Grass) 

Pennisetum japonicum is a fine hardy grass and just the thing 
for the edges of the pool or for planting in groups along the edge 
of a shrubbery border. P. longistylum is the best known of the 
annual sorts and is used extensively for bordering Canna beds. 
Allow at least eighteen inches of space between the plants when 
used for this purpose, so as to avoid a soft, weak growth that will 
not be able to resist heavy rains. P. ruppelianum is even better 
than P. longistylum, as it has purplish colored plumes while the other 
two have white ones. 

All three are easily grown from seed, but don't be tempted, 
when transplanting the seedlings in March from seed sown in 
February, to take four or five at a time and later on pot them up 
in that way in order to obtain quicker results. They look like 
ordinary grass plants but use them separately. They will all make 
bushy plants by May. 



OTAHEITE ORANGE 



453 



OTAHEITE ORANGE 

Around Christmas one 
finds these showy minia- 
ture Orange trees dis- 
played in fancy baskets 
and hampers, or used in 
made-up baskets in con- 
nection with Ericas, Dra- 
caenas and Grotons, in 
almost every flower shop 
in the larger cities. Yet 
but few country florists 
make any effort to have 
even a few fruited plants 
in their display. What is 
there that could possibly 
be more noticed or more 
admired, or what will stay 
in good condition longer ? 
The fruit of these Oranges 
begins to color toward the 
end of October and re- 
mains in perfect shape on 
the plants practicaUy aU Winter. Then, if you cut the plants 
back just a little in March, remove a little of the top soil in 
the pots and replace it with fresh soil, the new growth wiU soon 
start and the plants wiU flower in May or June and later bear more 
fruit. Carry them out in the open then, plunging the pots up to 
the rim into the ground; if you can give the least bit of shade so 
much the better, it wiU help develop a darker colored foliage. 

You can purchase the plants set with green fruit from the 
specialists in the Fall; all they require thereafter is a night tempera- 
ture of 50 deg. 

PAINTED TONGUE 

See Salpiglossis 





S^ 


. -:^^ ^ 


^^^^^^^m' ^l^'- 



Fig. 225.-^-The Double Flowering OaANGE is 
something quite out of the ordinary. With its de- 
Kghtf ul fragrance it does not have to produce fruit 
in order to be a useful asset in the flower shop 



PALMS 

The principal Palms the florist uses rank in importance as 
follows: Kentias, both Belmoreana and Forsteriana; Phcenix 
canariensis and P. Roebelenii, Areca lutescens and Latania borbonica. 
All these are treated under their respective headings, as are also 
Areca, Cocos and Gycas. There are a lot more fine varieties, but 
the above are, and, with the exception of Phcenix Roebelenii, always 
have been the main ones found in the average palm house. 



454 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 226.— An Otaheite Orange in Fruit. Even the red-berried Ajdisia finds it hard 

to compete nvith an Otaheite Orange loaded with well-colored fruit. Your Christmas 

display should always contain a few of these miniature trees 

No other plants the florist carries are of greater value than 
good thrifty palms and this is more so today than ever before. 
A houseful of good palms is one of the best assets any retail grower 
can possess. For decorating the show house and the store, they 
beat the most expensive fixtures you could buy. There is nothing 
you could do to create a better impression on those entering your 
establishment than to use palms generously. The plants, when 
at all taken care of, will stay in good condition and, in fact, grow into 
money. Such as are accidentally injured in any way are just as 
valuable for decorating and when used a few times for such pur- 
poses will pay for themselves. There are seasons for Peonies, Lilacs, 
Cyclamen, Lihes and Poinsettias, but the season for selling palms 
lasts throughout the twelve months of every year. 



PALMS, PANDANUS 455 

The Palm House 

In building a new place the first things I would consider are the 
palm house and its location. It should be as near to the main 
entrance of the place as possible. Every one of the other houses 
has periods when it is not looking at its best, but the palm house 
always looks good. If you lack an imposing front entrance or an 
elaborate store, there is, I am sure, a way to manage with a house, 
a half-house or even a quarter of a house -filled with palms displayed 
to best advantage. If four or even three plain white walls constitute 
the inside of the room you do business in, a half-hour's work with 
palms and ferns can transform it into an attractive florist shop. 

That is my opinion as to the value of palms. No matter how 
much or how Httle a retail grower actually grows on his place, 
there is no reason for him not to have a good supply on hand. Ours 
is a show business if ever there was one, and all depends on the show 
we make. If you retail flowers and want to do it successfully, 
palms are a vitaJ necessity. 

A palm house should have a minimum temperature of 60 deg. 
in Winter and no harm is done if it gets to 100 deg. or over during 
Summer as long as you supply sufficient water and shade to prevent 
the burning of the foliage. The palm house, with the smaller 
florist in particular, isn't meant for palms alone, but for other deco- 
rative foUage plants and ferns. Always see that it is kept in shape 
and clean, with everything arranged for the best effect. A palm 
house is always a show house, and should be a house to be proud of. 

PAMPAS GRASS 

See Ornamental Grasses 

PANDANUS VEITGHII 

This is considered one of the most beautiful variegated plants 
of aU the florist carries and every store, show house or palm house 
needs a few specimens to make things attractive. 

As a house plant this Pandanus has no equtd. It will grow in 
time into great specimens, yet even small stock out of 2-in. pots 
makes most suitable center plants for fern dishes. Or around 
Christmas and Easter, plants out of 3^2- and up to 5-in. pots can 
be used to great advantage with other plants in a basket arrangement. 

It doesn't pay the average florist to grow on the plants he needs 
during the year. He can do better to purchase from time to time 
the different sizes he runs short of. It is cheaper than to carry a 
lot of large plants for stock. However, if you have good-sized plants 
on hand the lateral shoots which appear at the base of the plants 
are easfly removed; and if given a sand bench with strong bottom 
heat they wfll soon send out their thick, white roots. The sooner 
after that you pot them up in a sandy soil mixture, the better. 



456 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 227. — Specimens op Pandanus. Pandanus atilis {center), while a most attrac- 
tive decorative plant, stands but little show alongside the variegated-leaved P. 
Veitchii, which easily heads the Ust of all the florist's variegated foUage plants 



PANSIES 

FNO you make money out of your Pansies or are you not sure 
^-' whether you do or not ? They, like everything else, need to be 
handled right in order to pay. You cannot buy a package of seed, 
accepting anything so long as it is Pansy seed, sow it, later on trans- 
plant the seedlings, and let it go at that. 

Wonderful improvements have been made in Pansies as to size 
of flowers and stems and habit, and we no longer have to depend 
on Europe to obtain the seed. That is not to say that in England, 
France and Germany good Pansies are not to be found. On the 
contrary, they have always been known for their fine Pansies, 
but of late years, both in eastern and western United States, good 
men have gone into the specializing of Pansies and with the help of 
the best foreign varieties have worked up strains that are hard to 
equal. Such seed can be purchased but it costs money, and on that 
account alone has to be used right. When the proper attention 
is given to the growing of the plants they can be and are made a 
paying crop by many. 

I am sure that if the florist has good Pansies in Spring they 
will sell for a high price. People will buy them when they wouldn't 
consider ordinary stock no matter how cheaply it is offered. That 
much for outdoor ones. 



PANSIES 457 

What will, however, mean far more to the average retail grower, 
is having Pansies to cut from under glass during the Winter and 
Spring months. Properly handled they will flower as freely as 
the single Violets (to which they belong), and where is anyone to be 
found who doesn't like Pansies, especially if they are good Pansies ? 

Of as great importance are Pansies during Easter Week. There 
is no other small flowering plant that wiU give more attractive 
made-up pans than Pansies. A customer can't resist a well-filled 
pan of solid giant Pansies, either yellow, blue or white; it makes a 
stunning Easter favor and needs but little trimming. 

Consider for a moment what it takes to grow on a Lily, a 
Genista, a Rambler Rose, an Hydrangea or an Azalea and then 
figure out the cost to you of a $3 pan of Pansies. 

For Early Outdoor Bedding 

To begin with, Pansies like a rather heavy loam in order to 
do best, and a liberal dose of well decomposed manure and sand 
will help to obtain good results. Good Pansies will make fair flowers 
even in poor soil but cheap Pansies, no matter how weU you treat 
them, will produce cheap flowers. 

AU Violas like a deeply cultivated soil, moisture and a cool 
temperature in order to produce a healthy growth and the largest 
flowers. If you want plants to start to flower by the middle of 
April sow seed in early August outdoors. The seed wiU come up 
almost anywhere. If you buy expensive seed you want every 
possible one to germinate and produce a plant. For that reason, 
prepare a nice bed for them, making use of a coldframe. Have the 
surface of the bed level and mellow; sow thinly in rows about four 
inches apart, barely covering the seeds after they have been pressed 
down gently into the soil; give a good watering and place shade 
frames over the bed. Except in very dry, hot weather, no watering 
is needed until the seedlings are up ; if you have but a smaU amount 
of space sown it wiU pay to remove the shade frames (except for 
three hours or so during the middle of the day) and in about ten 
days remove them for good. By that time, every good seed is up 
and the plants when once estabUshed don't want any shade. The 
only reaison you place it over the seeds is that you want to do what 
you can to give every seed a chance. 

By the end of September or thereabouts transplant to Winter 
quarter^, or where they are to remain until sold, allowing about 
three and one-half to four inches between them. The latter is not 
too much for good-sized plants, and if you intend using some for 
Winter, Spring or Easter flowering indoors, select the strongest 
plants and place them apart from the rest where you can get at 
them any time during the Winter months. 



458 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 228. — Pawsies — THAT IS, GOOD ONES — GAjMBEMADEA PAYING CHOP by the retail 
grower ijf raised under glass. Like Violets, they delight in a cool house, but they 

require a sunny bench 

Pansies can stand a lot bf cold weather, even zero, when planted 
outdoors. But a good way to do is to protect them a little which 
is easily done with sashes if you have them in a coldframe. But 
this doesn't mean to place sashes on in October, and produce a soft 
growth. Wait until Winter conditions have set in for good and things 
are frozen. Again, in early Spring, don't let the frames heat up, 
but remove the sashes early. It will produce stronger, better plants 
and better flowers. 

For Late Outdoor Flowering 

While the August-sown Pansies will make the best flowering 
stock for early Spring and Summer, they usually are not so desirable 
for later flowering. For this purpose, seed can be sown indoors 
during January and the plants transplanted into flats and placed 
on a sheK to be set out in a frame in March. 

Some florists make use of this method entirely and have plants 
in flower almost as soon as from stock overwintered outdoors, but 
both the plants and the flowers of this late-sown crop lack sub- 
stance compared with the others. A good way is to use both 
methods, sowing outdoors and again inside. If the plants are good, 
ways will be found to use them. 



For Indoor Flowering 

For indoor flowering seed can be sown during July; that is, 
if you want Midwinter flowers. Plant, sow and handle the same 



PANSIES 459 

as the ones wanted for Spring. The object is to obtain a heavy, 
well-branched plant by the middle of October. It usually takes 
twelve weeks to obtain such a plant but much depends on weather 
conditions. I have known hot, dry Summers when it was very diffi- 
cult to grow on half decent plants; the heat was too much for them 
and early ones just made a spindly stem and a few leaves and 
flowers. Those years, seed sown in September produced by Decem- 
ber far better plants than the first batch. As stated above, have the 
plants wanted for indoor flowering in frames and protected so you 
can get aj them. 

As A Catch Crop 

I know of a small grower who had planted a bench of Gar- 
nations, variety white Enchantress which someone had recom- 
mended to him as a great money-maker. The Carnations started out 
all right but around Christmas something got into them, and they 
kept getting worse until the man made up his mind to throw them 
out. He happened to have a frame of Pansies — plants which, due 
partly to a favorable growing season, were in exceUent condition. 
He had to use a grub-hoe to lift them, but he did it and, after being 
thawed out, they were planted twelve inches apart in the former 
Carnation bench after another dose of manure had been added to 
the soil. In three weeks those plants began to flower. The first 
blooms were short-stemmed of no great account, but as the plants 
became estabUshed, they started to prove a paying crop. Toward 
Spring and around Easter he had the best flowers and would cut a 
little foUage with them which made them still more desirable for 
the retailer. When, the day after Easter, his Geraniums were ready 
for the final shift, the bench of Pansies had all been cut so he used 
the soil in the bench for the Geraniums. After bonemeal had been 
added at the rate of a 7-in. potful to a barrowful of soil, the bench 
was refilled with Geraniums. 

That teUs the story and this man has had a bench of Pansies 
ever since, only he plants or benches the stock right after the 'Mums 
are through. You can plant such Pansies any time during the 
Winter months, just so you always have a supply on hand to draw 
from. If, for any reason, you should have no use for them, they 
can he left outdoors and used in Spring. A mild Winter tempera- 
ture of from 45 to 48 deg. suits Pansies best. 

In Pans for Easter 
If you have nice bushy plants in a frame with the colors separate 
and want them to be in fuU bloom by Easter, lift them as carefuUy 
as you can, that is, with plenty of soU around the roots, and plant 
them on a sunny bench about five weeks before they are wanted. 
If Easter falls on a late date four weeks is enough. When the 



460 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



plants are in flower a few days before Easter Sunday, make up youi 
pans; they want to be good and full in order to look at their best. 
After they have been potted, place them in a cool, shaded house. 

As TO Varieties 

Always make sure you have enough yellows and blues. In 
fact, for Spring it is well to sow out one-half of your requirements 
in the three separate colors: yellow, blue, and white and the other 
half in a mixture. The same almost holds good for indoor growing; 
if anything, don't grow quite as many white ones and go perhaps 
a little heavier on the yellows. 

PAPAVER (POPPY) 

Oriental Poppies 

The Oriental Poppy {Papaver orientate) attracts much attention 
in the hardy border in June. It makes a large plant with fern-like 

foliage, covered for a week or 
more with long-stemmed, large, 
single, scarlet flowers. Besides 
the red there is a splendid pink, 
Mrs. Perry, and to complete 
the assortment, you should also 
plant the white (Perry's White.) 

All three grow easily from 
seed which, with the florist, is 
best sown out in early Spring. 
The seedlings, when large 
enough, should be potted up 
into 2s to be planted later on 
in the field. None of the Pop- 
pies, whether annual or hardy, 
is fond of having its roots dis- 
turbed; that is the reason for 
potting the seedlings. 

The Oriental Poppies die 
down after they are through 
flowering and new leaves appear 
in September; this makes it 
necessary to plant something 
between them. When you have 
them in a hardy border. Glad- 
ioli are as good as anything. 

Iceland Poppies 

With us the Iceland Pop- 
pies are among the first plants 




Fig 229.— Omental Poppies. These 
hardy Poppies bloom with the Irises and 
L-olumbines and certainly liven up the 
border. We have them now in white, 
pmk.and scarlet, all the varieties being 
easily grown from seed 



PAPAVER 



461 



in the hardy border to flower in Spring and that is enough to make 
us think well of them. The dainty flowers come in quite an assort- 
ment of shades and colors and when cut partly open wiU remain 
in good condition for three or four days. 

If seed is sown indoors in February and the seedlings are potted 
up and planted out in April they wiU all flower freely by the end 
of May. The plants stay green all Summer and are perfectly hardy. 
You cannot afford to be without them. 



Shirley Poppies 

The Shirley Poppies are among the best of the many single 
flowering annual Poppies. While perhaps not to be considered as 
ideal cut flowers, if cut at the right time or just as the buds open, 
they wfll.last for several days and make a showy vase. 

If you have the space, sow out a bed or long row of the plants. 
The flowers will last only a day, 
but there are so many coining 
right along that you don't miss 
them as they pass. 

Flowering Poppies under 
Glass 

The single annual Poppies 
are fine for flowering under 
glass in early Spring. Seed 
should be sown either thinly 
across the bench in rows about 
one foot apart or in a flat, in 
February. Pot the seedlings 
into 2s and plant out later on. 

If you are anxious to have 
flowers to cut around Memorial 
Day this can be accomplished 
easfly by transplanting the seed- 
lings two inches apart into flats 
as soon as you can handle them 
and letting the plants flower in 
these flats. The idea is to stunt 
the plants and cause them to 
flower earlier than they would 
if given aU the root room they 
would like to occupy. 




Fie 230.— Shirley Poppies. These an- 
nuals, sown under glass in February and 
grown in flats or shallow benches, will 
prove a paying crop when in bloom in May 



462 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

PELARGONIUM 

Pelargonium is a beautiful name and the name of a beautiful flower. 
While the bedding Geraniums belong to the Pelargoniums, we hardly 
know them by that name and it is well that some sort of distinction 
should be made between them and the beautiful new sorts of show 
flowers we have today, such as Easter Greeting, Gardener's Joy, 
Swabian Maid, Wurtembergia, Lucy Becker and Wolfgang Goethe. 
All these and many others surely deserve to be classed as show 
Pelargoniums and all make beautiful flowering pot plants for Spring 
and early Summer flowering. A well-flowered plant is so beautiful 
that a customer cannot help but buy it. 

Usually when you mention Pelargoniums, the first thing you 
think of is the white fly that comes along with it, either when you 
first get the plants or after you have them awhile. However, there 
are plenty of specialists today who will supply you with clean stock. 

You should know that a healthy, growing Pelargonium isn't 
nearly as apt to get infested with white fly or form a desirable 
breeding place as a stunted one; but if you never had a white fly 
in your place and happen to have a batch of Pelargoniums at a 




Fig 231.— Pelargoniums. Whoever named this variety "Easter Greeting" cer- 
tEumycnoseweU, tor it and its companions are among the showiest of Easter plants, 
iney can be grown on, too, at a moderate price which means a good deal to the 

smaller florist 



PELARGONIUM, PEONIES 463 

standstill somewhere, you are likely to have a visit of the white fly 
sooner or later. 

To kiU white fly there is nothing surer than fumigating with 
cyanide of potassium. However, this is always more or less danger- 
ous for the retail grower with a lot of different kinds of stock in one 
house, and I am convinced that if you obtain a lot of rooted cuttings, 
or, what is stiU better, 2- or 23^-in. stock, clean in every way, and 
if you will make it a practice to spray these every week with a nicotine 
solution and also make it a rule to reach every part of the underside 
of the leaves as well as the center when you spray — then you won't 
have white fly, unless your house is full of the pest when you bring 
the Pelargoniums in. 

How TO Grow Good Pelargoniums 

No matter whether you have old plants which had a period of 
rest during Summer, or rooted cuttings taken in late FaU from such 
plants after they had been started into growth again, or young 
stock rooted during Winter or Spring, it is during Winter, in a cool 
but rather moist house that they will riiake their best growth. 
You cannot grow them successfully in a dry house or one where the 
temperature goes much over 50 deg. ; a little below that point is 
even better. 

I would prefer a Fall-rooted cutting for growing into a large 
specimen for April flowering. Such plants like a sandy loam with a 
liberal dose of weU decomposed manure and, of course, plenty of 
drainage. For small stock in 33^s or 4s by May, you can root cuttings 
during the Winter months. 

PEONIES 

One might say that from time immemorial the Peony has . been a 
univers^ favorite with all lovers of flowers. Today it is better known 
and more highly thought of by the public than any other flower we have 
in the hardy border. What is as remarkable as anjrthing, however, is 
the fact that in the face of all the new and beautiful varieties coming 
onto the stage from time to time, some of the old-timers, like festiva 
maxima, that were novelties more than half a century ago, have re- 
tained all their good qualties and are still among the most desirable 

sorts offered. 

T CAN not place Pseonia sinensis ahead of all other desirable 
* hardy flowering florist's plants principally because of its short 
flowering period. There is also the objection that when it is Peony 
week or month the plants make no distinction; they are in bloom 
with us and with every one of our patrons in the neighborhood 
at the same time. It is true that with the help of cold storage 
flowers may be had many weeks after your own have passed, 



464 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 







^^ 




■ 






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^1 










^^^H 






■^ fl^Hl 




^H 






^'fPl 




^H 




?y^ 


B- i 




^H 












^K^> ^^ 






■1 

1 





Fig. 232.— PiEONIA FESTIVA MAXIMA is One of 

the oldest yet one of the best of Peonies. Every 
retail grower should have a good-sized row to 
cut from and to sell as stock in Fall and Spring 



but while such flowers are 
most useful, they often 
have absolutely no keep- 
ing qualities. But, for all 
that, if you have space 
outdoors by aU means de- 
vote some of it to a nice 
lot of Peonies and be good 
to them. 

Peonies are exactly 
like Boston Ferns or Hy- 
drangea paniculata grandi- 
flora. With the tens and 
hundreds of thousands of 
plants sold to the public 
each year one would think 
that by this time every- 
body must have all they 
want. In the case of 
Peonies in particular, few 
other plants can get along 
with less care or stand 
more abuse; yet each 
year there sepms to be a 
greater demand for them. 
This is bound to keep on; 



in fact, as we go along more will be wanted than ever before. 

Among the so-called hardy plants that your patron who is 
building a new house will first think of planting, are Peonies. Next, 
most likely will come Iris, then Larkspur or Hollyhocks, and so 
on. With a good stock of Peonies on your own grounds you can 
supply that sort of demand. But leave the filling of an order calling 
for one or two of each of twenty-five varieties to the specialist; or 
call on him to fill the order. For very few of us who make Peony 
growing a side line will find it profitable to either carry great numbers 
of plants or a great number of varieties. The fewer the sorts you 
have, the more easily they are kept separate. I don't beheve in 
growing your own stock in order to compete with or undersell the 
nurseryman or specialist, but mainly so that, first, you may have a 
good supply of flowers yourself during Peony season and second, 
you may be able to supply field clumps during Spring and FaU 
whenever there is a call for them. 

To my way of thinking, your paj^rons have a right to expect 
you, as a local florist, to carry Peonies and other hardy stock to supply 



PEONIES 



465 




the ordinary de- 
mand in your town 
or neighborhood. 
It is far more 
sensible to do so 
than to imagine 
you can grow 
orchids or Roses as 
well or as cheaply 
as the specialist. 

The more 
Peonies you sell 
in the form of 
plants, the more 
Peonies your nur- 
seryman will sell in 
sunnlvine vou and ^'^- 233.— Single Peonies. Not all the beautiful Peonies 
^ a • u ^^^ double Varieties. Singles like these should appeal espe- 

Other tlonsts who dally to the florist who grows and retails his stock. If cut 
are doing the same. partly open, the blooms will last for days 

If you have a fair soil don't dig trenches as they do in Holland 
and pile a lot of manure into them in planting Peonies. All they 
want is a deeply cultivated, well-drained soil. Plant them in rows 
so you can cultivate between, for the more you cultivate and keep 
the weeds out the better for the plants. Have the tips of the eyes 
about four inches or so below the surface and if you plant stock 
consisting of from three to five eyes, from the third year on you 
can start taking part of them up each Fall and dividing them, 
either to be replanted or to be sold. While the best time to do this 
is in September, you shouldn't miss any chance of selling plants 
merely because the order comes in Spring. 

Your nurseryman will furnish you with a list of the best sorts, 
some of them even better than any I could suggest, but if you want 
to start out with six varieties of different colors and shades, I would 
suggest: Festiva maxima, white; Albert Crousse, delicate pink; 
Mme. Calot, early pink; Felix Crousse, red; Louis Van Houtte, 
crimson; and Modeste Guerin, rose pink. 

Paeonia officinalis is the first to flower and for that reason 
is highly desirable. P. rubra, the red sort, is the best known of all of 
them, but equally as desirable are P. rosea superba and P. mutabilis, 
both fine pinks. P. tenuifolia flore plena has finely cut fern-like 
foliage and is a very attractive sort with its deep red flowers. 

The single Japanese Peonies should be better known. They 
may not be as showy as the double ones, but from the florist's 
point of view they are every bit as desirable. Of course, they are 
not flowers you can ship great distances like the double soi:ts, but 
when grown on your own grounds where you can cut them just as 



466 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 

they open and place them in a cooler, they will last for days and you 
wiU find many uses for them. I am sure that if you work up a stock 
of them and if your patrons have a chance to see the flowers, you will 
have plenty of calls for them. There is a long list of named varieties 
of these single sorts with Japanese names as easy to spell and pro- 
nounce as those of the Japanese Irises. What you are most interested 
in, however, is a good white, a few good pinks and a red or two. 

PENTSTEMON (BEARD'S TONGUE) 

Penststemon, while not hardy everywhere, is nevertheless 
useful and a most showy border plant. You can obtain a good strain 
of seed which, if sown about October and if the little plants are 
carried, along with your bedding stock in a 50-deg. house and planted 
out in early May, wiU give you a great display of flowers during 
Midsummer. The spikes are loaded with miniature Gloxinia-shaped 
blooms ranging in color from soft rose and lilac to deep crimson. 
The variety I have reference to is Pentstemon gloxinioides Sensa- 
tion, but there are other good ones. The plants may be lifted in 
late Fall and carried over in a frame, or shoots from cut down plants 
may be rooted in Fall arid the young plants carried along in a cool 
house over Winter. But if you don't want too many and are not 
particular as to the exact colors, you are, as stated above, just as 
well off sowing seed. 

PERILLA NANKINENSIS 

Those who have use for Coleus, Achyranthes, or other border 
plants can always use Perillas to good effect. Their bright-colored 
leaves always form a good contrast with those of other plants and 
they can stand more rough handling and are less affected by a dry 
or a wet spell than almost any other foliage plant we have for bed- 
ding. A few plants hfted in Fall and carried in a 55-deg. house will 
give you many cuttings from the end of February on; they can also 
be grown from seed sown in January. 

PERIWINKLE 

See Vinca 

PETUNIAS 

/^NLY of late years have Petunias come to the front, but they 
^^ occupy today a place beside our most desirable bedding 
plants all over the country, in beds, borders, vases, etc. The pro- 
gressive retail grower will find that his patrons wiU prefer, even 
to Geraniums, plants of the ruffled monsters of American origin in 
4-in. pots grown on from seed. Also it is far more profitable for 
him to handle them. 



PETUNIAS 



467 




Seed and Seeding 

One package of seed 
will give you at least 300 
plants, and by sowing out 
in January you can have 
your plants in full bloom 
in 4s by the middle or end 
of May and retail them at 
a higher price than Ge- 
raniums. Compare that 
with growing the latter. I 
am talking from the retail 
grower's point of view. 
There is absolutely no 
more showy bedding plant 
than one of those giant 
single Petunias in a 4- or 
5-in. pot in June; many 
thousands more could be 
sold if people were given a 
chance to see them. 

For large vases or rus- 
tic tubs you couldn't have 
a better combination than 
Balcony Queen and Snow- 
ball Petunias; nor is there 
anything better than a 
porch or veranda box filled solid with Rosy Morns. 

Petunia seed is very small and should never be covered with 
soil. Take a 12-in. pan, put over the bottom a 1-in. layer of coarse 
soil followed by nicely sifted soil well mixed with sand, and fill up 
to within an inch or so of the top. Press firmly, not only in the 
center, but also around the edges of the pan. Now put on another 
thin layer of still finer sifted soil, level it, and give the pan two or 
three doses of water. When dried off a little, sow the seed thinly 
and gently press it into the surface; follow this with a light spray- 
ing (making use of a Scollay sprayer) and place the pan on the hot 
water returns — but place a couple of short pieces of lath on the 
pipes first. Place a whitewashed pane of glass over the pan and 
each day apply warm water, always making use of the Scollay 
sprayer. The surface of the soil should never be allowed to dry 
out if you want to obtain the highest possible percentage of germin- 
ation and thrifty plants. 

As soon as the little plants appear, which only takes a few days, 
bring the pan to the light, but leave the pane of glass on, placing a 
piece of stick imder one side to allow a free circulation of air. In 



Fig. 234.— Diener's Ruffled Monster Pe- 
tunias. A "close-up" of seedlings in 4-in. 
pots. Some of the flowers are beautifully ruf- 
fled, coming in all shades and colors, and some 
measure easily six inches and more in diameter 



468 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




PETUNIAS 469 

a week or so remove the glass and place the pan on a shelf near the 
glass, in a 50-deg. house; 53 deg. is even better. In about six weeks 
from the time of sowing those sown in January are ready for trans- 
planting into flats, allowing about one inch of space between the 
plants. When they touch each other they should go into pots and 
be kept shifted until in the pots in which they will flower. 

Mistakes often made are that the top layer of soil isn't fine 
enough, or, with careless watering, a lot of seed goes to waste; the seed 
may be sown too thickly; the seedhngs may be left too long in 
the seed- pans or flats; transplanted seedlings are allowed to become 
spindly and hardwooded before they are potted up; the 2-in. stock 
is left to become potbound and stunted before it is shifted, or the 
plants are kept in too warm a temperature. Any of these troubles 
can be avoided. A stuated plant will flower in the seed pan or 
in a 2-in. pot if left there long enough; while a healthy plant will 
make a short, stocky growth and hardly ever need pinching back. 
It will make side shoots if given room, and not kept too warm. 

Petunias are not very particular as to light or heavy soil as 
long as you have perfect drainage; no plant will show the effects 
of a too wet soil quicker than a Petunia. 

Preparing for Spring Trade 

The retail grower should always bear in mind that the bedding 
season is liable to start any time in May and apt to extend into 
July. For that reason, when growing Petunias from seed, it is well 
always to make at least three sowings about four weeks apart, 
beginning the first week in January. The first batch will be ready 
in early May, the second toward the end of the month and the 
last in June. Of course, there are always plants that do not grow 
as large or as fast as the others, and as with the double sorts 
grown from seed, we may find some of the choicest among them. 

What should be kept in mind, is to try and have different lots 
of plants come along. For instance, you can dispose of your first 
batch of plants in flower by May twentieth out of 4s and have a 
nice lot of 23^s ready to be shifted into the 4s, to take the place of 
those sold, and be ready for the market by the fifteenth of June. 

Late shifted Petunias can be had in fine shape and sold when 
almost everything else in the bedding plant line is sold out. 

A nice lot of 4-in. Rosy Morns, if planted a httle close, will 
make a fine looking porch box the day after it is filled, with one- 
third of the plants hanging over the sides. Often you don't need 
Vincas or English Ivies at all since the Petunias wiU take their 
place. But if you fill boxes or vases early in the season, always" 
allow plenty of room between the plants, for a crowded condition 
at that preliminary stage of their development will soon ruin them. 



470 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 236. — Double Petunias. A good double, 
white and pink Petunia always sells diu-ing the 
bedding season. Plants are best propagated 
through cuttings. Root these early and grow 
l£em on cool to produce sturdy plants 



Double Petunias 

There is a place for the 
double sorts and they 
make attractive pot plants 
for Spring, but there is 
not the demand for them 
that there is for the single 
ones. Most florists who 
use the double ones exten- 
sively carry a few plants in 
pots during Winter and 
propagate from cuttings. 
If you have a good plant 
of white, rose, deep pink 
or some other color best 
suited to meet your re- 
quirements, that method 
is the only way to increase 
your stock so as to have it 
come true. 

Double sorts are even 
more particular as to per- 
fect drainage than the 
single ones and whenever 
you notice a sickly yellow 
or stunted growth, you 
usually can trace the trou- 



ble to conditions involving improper or insufficient drainage. 

Today, September 21st, we filled six window boxes for a new 
residence with Rosy Morn Petunias. Last July the plants were 
in 3j^s, too straggly to use. So we cut them back to 4 in., shifted 
them into 4s, and plunged them in a frame ten inches apart. They 
came out in fine shape and have more than paid for themselves. 



PHILADELPHUS 

The forms of Philadelphus (also called Syringa or Mock Orange) 
are among the best known and most widely used hardy shrubs; 
we find them in every assortment on the average home ground. 

Philadelphus coronarius is the old favorite and becomes loaded 
down with its garland-Uke masses of white, Jasmine-scented flowers 
in June. P. Gordonianus flowers fully a month later and P. aureus 
is the golden leaf variety, very effective for planting in groups. 

The florist who does landscape work or sells hardy stock should 
have a few specimen plants for his customers to look at on his 
own grounds, and should carry the usual 2- to 3-ft. stock plants in 
Spring and Fall. 



PHLOX 



471 



PHLOX 
Hardy Species 

One of the most useful 
perennials, and the best Phlox 
for the florist, is Miss Lingard. 
No other hardy plant I know 
of is to be compared with it 
for the florist who has design 
work to make up, and this 
applies to about every retail 
grower. You can have the 
plants in bloom from the 
middle of June on and you 
will cut long-stemmed, pyra- 
mid-shaped flower heads, use- 
ful for all kinds of purposes, 
up to time for frost. Then, dur- 
ing Spring and Fall, you can 
sell the field-grown plants to 
your customers. 

You want white in every 
perennial border; in fact, I 
don't think we use enough of 
it to set off the other colored 
flowers. It is all well and good 
to have your lady patron talk 
about a yellow or blue or pink 
effect and that she wants 
nothing else in her border. 




Fig. 237.— Phlox Miss Lingard. If I had 
to name the one best Phlox for the florist, here 
it is. Every retail grower should have a 
few hundred plants to cut from. By root- 
ing several lots of cuttings during the Win- 
ter, from plants grown on a Carnation 
bench, you can cut flowers from the middle 
of June until snow flies. (See Fig. 81, page 
236.) 



That usually lasts one season, or maybe two; then we go back to a 
cheery mixture. For after all, the first thing about any border, 
whether planted with annuals or hardy stock, is that it creates a 
mass of bloom all Summer, and it takes groups of white flowering 
plants to bring out the others. Colors never clash if you 
have enough white among them; white goes well with almost 
anything. 

Not only should every florist have a good batch of Miss Lin- 
gard, but he should have some of the other beautiful Phloxes avail- 
able; among those we have today varieties W. G. Egan and EUza- 
beth Campbell are two of the finest, being light and rose-pink, 
respectively, with large flowers. You can always sell a pink Phlox 
when a red or lavender or cerise one cannot be sold. 

When you once have a stock of Phlox, you can with the help of 
a greenhouse increase it rapidly and easily and there is no trouble 
in disposing of a good number of plants each year at a good profit. 



472 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



Growing Phlox suffhutigosa Miss Lingard 

In order to work up a stock of this Phlox, purchase field- 
grown stock clumps, or lift some of your own stock in October, 
heel it in in a frame and bring it into a Carnation house temperature 
about January first. Plant on a bench, and when the young growth 
is about four inches in height take cuttings with three or four eyes, 
leaving a couple of eyes on the lower part. These will, in a short time, 
furnish more cuttings; in fact you can keep on taking cuttings up 
to the end of April. They will root even without bottom heat and 
should be planted later on in flats two inches apart. From those 
first planted the tops can in turn be used for cuttings. 

Plant the young stock out into the field in April and the early 
propagated plants will give you heavy spikes of flowers in two 
months and some a little later. The late ones may not flower the 
first season, but all of them will produce from five to eight heavy 
spikes the second Summer. Then, although the plants are good for 
years, it pays to discard them; by propagating a few each Winter 
you can always have some strong, vigorous stock to cut from. 
The foUage and habit of this Phlox differ from those of all others. 

The leaves are long, pointed, 
thick, leathery and glossy 
green and the time to cut the 
spikes is when the flowers are 
only partly open. 

I know there is complaint 
once in awhile of the flowers 
dropping, but what of that? 
AU flowers droop, wilt or drop 
sooner or later. However, I 
don't know of a better flower 
for rush order design work. 
You don't have to wire the 
stems for they are stiff enough 
to go into the moss without 
toothpicks. Nor is there a 
more showy plant for the 
perennial border, nor a hardier 
one. It will thrive in any 
sofl and doesn't need a lot 
of manure. In fact, it is better 
off without it. But what you 
do want to look out for is to 
have enough plants coming 
along each year , for it is the one- 
and two-year-old stock that 
gives you the heavy spikes. 




Fig. 238.— Phlox decussata W. G. Egan. 
If you wish to retain healthy foliage on 
hardy Phlox don't overfeed the plants with 
a lot of manure. They prefer a heavy 
loam and are at their best the second year 



PHLOX 473 

Phlox decussata 

The best way to propagate this Phlox, to which belong such 
fine colored sorts as Miss Jenkins (white), W. G. Egan (soft 
lilac pink), Elizabeth Campbell (salmon rose), Rynstrom (carmine 
pink), and Mauve Queen, is through rooted cuttings. Lift two- or 
three-year-old clumps in Fall; even one-year-old ones will do, and, 
in fact, usually have the best roots. Remove part of the soil 
carefully and then with a knife cut off some of the heaviest roots. 
You can cut to within two inches of the plant, but let all the small 
roots remain. The plants can then be divided (if they are large 
enough) and replanted in the field. 

The roots you have cut off should be cut into 1-in. pieces. 
Have flats ready with a layer of soil in the bottom on which is spread 
a layer — about a half-inch in thickness — of sand; spread the root 
cuttings thinly over the sand and cover with another layer of sand 
of the same thickness. Put a strong label with the name of the 
variety in one end of the flat and place the flats in a coldframe. 
All the water they need is enough to keep them from drying out. 
By February bring them in and. place them on a shelf or bench in 
a 50-deg. house. In a few weeks the young plants will appear and 
soon are ready to be either potted up or transplanted into other 
flats to go into the field by the end of April to flower the first season. 

These directions are of course meant for the retail grower and 
not the nurseryman who has no greenhouses. You can by this 
method quickly grow on a fine stock of plants, and when once under 
way, you soon will have a lot of fine plants for sale, besides having 
a grand display of flowering stock on your own grounds. 

Plant Phloxes — a lot of them. Use them for cut flowers and 
push the sale of the plants. It pays every florist to do so. 

Phlox subulata and other Hardy Forms 

You will surely have call for this creeping Phlox which is fine 
for borders or in the rockery with its evergreen, moss-1 ke foliage. 
It comes in a clear lilac pink and a pure white. While it is no good 
as a cut flower, it surely is most effective when a mass of color in 
Spring. The pink does not, however, go weU with all other colors. 

Other hardy Phloxes are: P. amcena, which like P. subulata, is 
of dwarf growth forming a dense mass of mossy green and very 
showy when in full bloom If you want something with mauve or 
lilac colored flowers for massing in the hardy border, Phlox Arendsii 
—either Amanda or Louise — will give it to you. These are early 
flowering hybrids coming into bloom even before Miss Lingard, 
and while they are not to be compared with that variety as sources 
of cut flowers, they are fine, nevertheless, and stay in bloom for 
five weeks or more. 



474 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 239. — Phlox subuiata. How to make use of the right plant in the right place 

is a problem weU worth studying. Here we see it solved. Even when out of bloom 

the moss-like foliage of this creeping Phlox makes ideal border material 

Phlox Drummondii (Annual Phlox) 

This annual Phlox, while not of great value to the florist, can 
be sown across a bench in rows and had in flower with from 10- 
to 12-in. stems by early May. The flowers wiU come in handy, 
especially if you sow a good pink or white strain. 

For outdoor flowering sow right in the open. You may also 
consider sowing seed about March first and transplanting the 
seedlings, five to a 4-in. pot. They will make nice bushy plants in 
that way and bloom by Memorial Day. 



PHCENIX (DATE PALM) 

Phcenix Roebelenii makes one of the most graceful of palms 
and the larger it gets, the more graceful it becomes; besides it is 
one of the very best of house plants. You cannot use it for mass 



PH(ENIX PALM 



475 




Kg. 240. — ^The Ph(enix Paum makes a good, decorative plant that will stand much 

rough handling. With this in view P. reclinata or P. eanariensis is mostly used, 

but P. Roebelenii is far more graceful than either 



decorative purposes like a Kentia, but there is nothing finer in 
specimen decorative plants where just one is wanted. 

Always include a few in your assortment; you can use the small 
plants for the center of fern dishes or in indoor window boxes. 

Long before we knew of this grand variety we considered 
PfuBnix eanariensis one of the leading pedms for the florist. It 
belonged to the three leaders, Kentias and Latanias being the 
other two. This Phoenix grows faster than P. Roebelenii, is coarser 
and can stand more rough usage and is fine to send out for decorative 
purposes. Purchase what stock you need of both sorts and do not 
try, on a small scale, to grow plants on from seed. It doesn't pay. 



476 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



PHYSALIS FRANCHETII 
(CHINESE LANTERN PLANT) 

If you have call for everlasting flowers, plant a few Physalis. 
This gets its name, Lantern Plant, from the fact that it produces 
large balloon- or lantern-shaped, red-colored calices in Fall, which 
remain that way all Winter, even when dry, and are very decorative 
on that account. 

Sow seed in Midsummer as you would that of other perennials, 
and for a permanent planting select a rather moist situation. 

PHYSOSTEGIA VIRGINIANA 
(FALSE DRAGON HEAD) 

While not two of the showiest of perennials, the Physostegias — 
both the lilac pink and the white — are valuable both for the hardy 

border and as cut flowers. 

They start to flower in late 
July and have stems 2- to 3-ft. 
long covered with tubular 
flowers which when cut will 
last in good condition for days. 
The plants grow easUy from 
seed or can be increased by 
division in September. When 
once established, you wiU have 
them always with you and 
you can recommend them as 
good perennials needing but 
little care. 

PICEA (SPRUCE) 

As far as the florist is con- 
cerned, there isn't a more 
useful conifer than Picea, or 
Spruce, particularly the Nor- 
way Spruce. Not that it is 
as attractive as some of the 
others, but because of its quick 
growth (and therefore inex- 
pensiveness) and the fact that 
even small 8- or 10-in. plants 
are perfect little specimens 
and are valuable in window 
boxes or to be used around 
Christmas. The plants are 
money makers for the florist. 




l<ig. 241.— Physostbgia vihginiana is one 
of the hardiest of perennials and a showy 
one when planted in masses. Coming into 
bloom in late Summer it also makes a 
good cut flower and a welcome change from 
the stock usually on hand at that time 



PICEA (SPRUCE) 477 

You can purchase from your nurseryman seedlings or trans- 
planted seedlings of Norway Spruce for a few dollars per hundred. 
These lined out will grow in four or five years into nice stock 
ranging from two to four feet or thereabouts in height. During 
these years if you set out enough plants, you will have stock to 
draw from for the filling of porch and window boxes for Winter 
effects. You will have calls occasionally for small plants that 
someone wants for planting out; or in December the most perfect 
plants can be potted up to answer as miniature Christmas trees, the 
caU for which seems to be on the increase from year to year. Many 
people prefer a neat, well-developed little tree about eighteen 
inches high for the center of the dining table, either in a pot or set 
on a block of wood. (See Fig. 269, page 524.) 

I hate to think of sacrificing any kind of conifer and consider 
it a crime to do so, yet as long as people demand and will pay 
for them, it would be foolish not to supply them. While some 
prefer a small size tree to a larger one, there are others again who 
use both and still others who will select a half-dozen or so of these 
small Spruces to be sent as gifts to their friends. Sometimes they 
require a little trimming up; others order them with only a crepe 
paper around the pot. 

If a florist with room will keep on for about six or eight years 
planting out each Spring a certain number of such Spruces and will 
keep on transplanting and giving more space to the larger ones, 
he will, at the end of the eighth year have a valuable lot of stock 
on his land which will bring him better returns than almost anything 
he could plant. To make doubly sure of large returns, along with 
those Christmas trees he should plant each year a few Colorado 
Blue Spruce, a few P. Engelmannii and some P. Douglasii. They are 
all awfully slow while small, but you don't notice this after you 
have a stock under way and small ones coming on each year. 

If you happen to live in a country town you should encourage 
the use of live Christmas trees. A 6- or 8-ft. Norway Spruce may 
be Ufted with a frozen ball of soil, burlapped and used for three 
or four days in a cool room or sun porch for Christmas and planted 
out later. It isn't claimed that every tree so treated will Hve or 
do well, but a majority of them wiU, and the smaller the tree the 
more apt it is to grow into a good specimen in years to come. Advise 
customers who buy these little living trees to prepare places for 
them in the Fall and mulch them well to keep the ground from 
freezmg. The plants can then be set out when the holidays are 
over with the least trouble and maximum chances of their living. 

PINCUSHION FLOWER PINKS 

See Scabiosa See Dianthus 



478 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 



PINUS (PINE) 

The White Pine is one of the finest of native conifers and 
should be planted far more than it is; so should the Scotch and 
Austrian Pines, whether for timber or windbreaks or as single speci- 
mens. The florist of the smaller town should set an example and 
make others follow. We need more conifers; almost every city 
and town does. And when once established as small plants, these 
Pines will usually take care of themselves. 

PiNUS MUGHO 

This is a dwarf Pine and an excellent one for home ground 
planting, whether you want it as a single specimen or planted in 
groups.. There are times when three or five of them can be placed 
to advantage at the end of a shrubbery border or along its edge; 
or a customer may want an evergreen effect, but object to conifers 
growing high; or you can use plants for vases or window boxes. 
They grow slow and at present come rather high in price but, for 
all that, if you have a show ground, you should plant a few Mughos. 
They will grow into money for you. 

PLANTAIN LILY 

See Funkia 

PLATYCODON 

'(Japanese Bell Flower) 
In itself the individual 
blossom of Platycodon is 
about as simple as any 
flower I can think of; yet 
when you see a mass of the 
plants in the hardy border, 
they are very show^j Be- 
sides, they can be used to 
advantage by the florist 
as cut flowers. He can 
also make them into sprays 
for they will last weU and 
go finely with other flow- 
ers. They grow about two 
feet in height on slender 
stems and come in white 
and blue. Sown indoors in 
February and planted out- 
doors in April, they wiU 
flower in July. 

PLUME POPPY 

See Bocconia 




Fig. 242.— A Good Root System on a Pine. 
Transplant or at least root prune shrubs and 
trees in youi nursery rows so as to produce 
compact, much-branched balls of fine feeding 
roots. They are much the easiest to move 



POINSETTIAS 



479 



PLUMS 

See Prunus 

POLIANTHES TUBEROSA 

See Tuberose 

POINSETTIAS 

The Poinsettia is today, 
as it has been for the past 
fifty years, the ideal Christ- 
mas flower on account of its 
bright colored red bracts. 
Perhaps no other plant or 
flower we handle during 
Christmas week is shorter 
lived, wilts quicker or is more 
disappointing to those who 
receive it; yet, when the next 
Christmas comes around, 
there comes again the same 
demand for Poinsettias and 





f -» ■ 




~% 'A 


^^ 


iJi ^^ 


#^ 


^r r^ ^y 


^J^ 


^^^HflUr ^^^■^'^^^^r 


^Wi 


Nf 


r^ 


^M 



Fig. 



+!,« j;««^-r^«;r,+^««+„ ^f « ■.rr,^^ T jg. 273.— Platycodon grandiflorum. Both 
the disappointments of a year ^^^^ ^^ ^lue sorts with their simple, beU- 

ago are all forgotten. Your shaped flowers belong in every collection of 

hardy border plants; the retail florist wiU get 
from them graceful cut flowers with good keep- 
ing qualities 



Christmas display is not com- 
plete without Poinsettias in 
pots and pans as well as cut. 

To grow Poinsettias successfully, you must have heat; not 
only that, but it must be a steady heat. Without that you may 
grow good bracts, but you will have yellow leaves or none at all. 

Poinsettias hardly ever have an abundance of real dark green 
foliage, but you can better obtain such foliage in a greenhouse than 
find K in the tropics or out West. 

Starting out with 2- or 2j^-in. stock in July, keep the plants, 
if wanted for pots or pans, on a sunny bench and keep them watered. 
Those for single stems keep shifted or plant them out on a bench 
allowing about one foot of space between them; the ones in the 
bench will give you the largest bracts and are best for cutting. 
Hardly ever do we sell single plants in pots, but there is always a 
brisk demand for plants in Azalea pots or pans, rahging from three 
to five or more to the pan. These usually are wanted short to serve 
as centerpieces on Christmas Day and for this purpose, later 
propagated stock is best, such as has been rooted in July: and planted 
from 2-in. pots into the pans in which they are to flower. In eeirly 
September, or even later, bring in these pans; ten weeks or more of 
pushing and a good soil should be given. 

While it is no trouble to get the plants to do well during the 
Summer months as long as they are watered properly, there is a 



480 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 244. — ^A Good Pot op Poinsbttias. Good foliage on a pot-grown Poinsettia 

is as necessary as large, weU-colored bracts. When done well, Poinsettias always 

find a ready sale at Christmas time 

critical time in Fall, when the temperature goes down overnight — 
maybe not low enough to make you start firing, yet frequently 
too low to suit the leaves of the Poinsettias. A night temperature 
with a 60-deg. minimum should be maintained for the plants in 
pots; those well established in benches can stand a few degrees 
less. By ear y November, sometimes even before, it is always 
wel not to apply water as it comes out of the hose, but to take the 
chill off; apply light doses of iquid cow manure every ten days. 

Yellow foliage is usually caused either by a low temperature, 
by keeping the plants too dry, or by lack of nourishment. When- 
ever the plants are subjected to all three of these troubles, they may 
not only get yellow leaves, but the latter may all drop off while 
the bracts remain in good shape. 



POINSETTIAS 481 

It takes a good grower to produce a pan of Poinsettias with 
green leaves to the top of the pan, but even with such stock it won't 
hurt, a couple days or so before Christmas, to set a few good-sized 
Asparagus plumosus plants along the edge of the pans. For in a 
hot, dry room the Poinsettia leaves will usually come oflF inside 
of a couple of days. I- suggest to the smaller retail grower that if 
he can manage' to purchase his requirements a few days before 
Christmas and do it at all reasonably, he let the large grower, who 
makes a specialty of Poinsettias, do the growing for him. With 
those located long distances out in the country, however, even the 
shippmg doesn't do the plants any good; and it is best for them 
to create facilities that will in some way enable them to maintain 
an even temperature in the house where the plants are. 

The Care of Gut Poinsettias 

To prevent the bracts from wilting is easy. Dip the lower 
end of the cut stem in hot water for a minute or so and wrap each 
bract nicely in tissue paper. It won't hurt if you fold the leaves 
close up to the stem and wrap at least the one nearest to the bract 
along with it. After that, place the flower deep in water and keep 
it in a cool place until wanted for deUvery. If you want to prevent 
disappointment, let your customer know that if the stems of the 
Poinsettias are to be cut, in case they are too long, they should, 
after cutting, be dipped in hot water again. 

Delivering Poinsettia Plants 

Those who are anxious to fill orders for Poinsettia plants to be 
delivered as gifts in good shape on Christmas Day should never let 
one go out without wrapping it carefully to prevent its becoming 
chilled on the way. These plants are even more particular in that 
respect than the most tender Begonia, and you cannot be too 
careful. 

Propagating Poinsettias 

The cut-down plants, whether from the bench or such as are 
left over in pots or pans, should be stored away under a bench and 
kept dust dry up to the middle of April. After this the soil should 
be removed from the roots and the plants potted up, placed on a 
sunny bench and the soil in the pots kept moist. They soon will 
begin to break and the cuttings— removed with a heel — will easily 
root in sand. Cuttings can be taken up to the middle of August, 
but of course the early rooted ones are best for cut flowers and 
will give you, 5- to 6-ft. stems if planted out early. Those rooted 
the latter part of August may only grow five or six inches in height, 
yet when five or six are used in a small pan, they make very at- 



482 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 246. — Pbimula obconica gigantba. 
(Grown by J. L. SchiUer, Toledo, O.) 
Primula obconica with its greatly improved 
strains has become of great value to the 
retail grower, not only as a flowering pot 
plant, but also because there are times 
when the flowers can be used to advantage 
in design work in place of expensive Carna- 
tions and Roses 



tractive Christmas plants. 
The less you disturb the roots 
when planting the 2-in. stock 
in the pans, the better. 

POOR MAN'S ORCHID 
See Schizanthus 

POPPY 

See Papaver 

POPPY, CALIFORNIA 

See Eschscholtzia 

POPPY, GIANT YELLOW 
TULIP 

See Hunnemannia 

PRIMULA (PRIMROSE) 

The varieties of Primulas 
grown for pot plants under 
glass are of greater importance 
to the average florist, and es- 
pecially the retail grower in 
the smaller cities and towns, 
than any other stock he carries. 
Of the main ones for usefulness. 
Primula obconia heads the hst 
and P. sinensis and P. mal- 
acoides foUow. Any of these 



can be had in flower all Winter long and obconica and malacoides 
not only make" beautiful, showy pot plants, but are of great value 
as cut flowers. There are times when Roses and Carnations bring 
such fancy prices as to make their use almost prohibitive in a funeral 
design; at such times the flowers of an obconica Primrose will answer 
every bit as weU and last fully as long. Moreover, they can be 
successfully grown in almost every estabUshment. 

Primula obconica 
Remarkable iinprovements have been made and are still being 
made with this Primula and a fine strain of seed is grown right here 
in the United States. Not only that, but good growers are special- 
izing in it and are growing young stock for the florists at a 
reasonable price. Those with their houses full of bedding plants 
can place their orders and have well-established 2-in. stock shipped 
during July and August which, with ordinary care, will develop 
into 5-in. plants in full bloom during the Midwinter months. This 
is simpler than sowing seed and bothering with the seedhngs at a 
time when you have your hands full of other things. " 



PRIMULA 



483 



All greenhouse Primulas require a rather moist atmosphere and 
so do the obconicas, but they will thrive in almost any good soil 
with plenty of drainage in the pots. During Summer let them have 
a shaded house with all the ventilation possible' and keep them 
shifted. Constant sprayiug with light doses of nicotine will keep 
them free from green fly and they a:re hardly ever attacked by 
anything else. By Fall gradually remove the shade and let them 
have a house of 50 deg. or a little over. They will do nicely in 
full sunlight, but when coming into flower, they should have some 
protection; it will result in better flower heads and a richer coloring 
in the flowers. 

For Christmas flowering, seed should be sown about January. 
Plant another lot about March for a later crop and still another 
about May first for Easter blooming. 

Those wanting the plants mainly for cut flowers should bench 
a few heavy 4s about September first, allowing one foot of space 
between them. This will result in extra large plants and long 
flower stems. Such plants can also be lifted and potted up when in 
full flower. They won't show any bad effects if this is done carefully 
and if they are kept in the shade for a little while; but they will hot 
have the lasting qualities of those grown in pots. 

Pbimula sinensis 

I consider a well-grown red Chinese Primula in full bloom in 
a 5-in. pot a most desirable Christmas plant and one which will 
always find a ready sale as 
there are always some among 
your customers not able or 
willing to purchase other more 
expensive stock. The large 
city retailer may not use them 
nor wish to cater to trade de- 
manding a doUar or a dollar 
and a half plant, but the coun- 
try florist wants all such plants 
he can get. However, the great 
majority as yet make but little 
effort to grow on this sort of 
stock, which, in the case of 
these Primulas, is a compara- 
tively easy matter. 

Well-established 2-in. 
plants shifted into 3s about 

July fifteenth can be easily ^-ii. o.~v-. — -~. i * k t tc 

grown into Jieavy 5s by the SrasttSet°o^ffla?ettotS 




Fig. 246. — Pbimula sinensis in a Four- 
inch Pot. With good culture, the Chinese 
Primulas can be had in 5- and even 6-in. 
pots for Christmas and every florist can 
use them to good advantage. However, 
4-in. stock in fuU bloom comes m very 



middle of December and 



plants is wanted 



484 FRITZ BAHR'S COMMERCIAL FLORICULTURE 




Fig. 247. — Primula malacoides in " 
a 7-in. pot. . Note the abundant foli- 
age. The Forget-me-not-Uke flowers 
on long, graceful stems are excellent 
for cutting and the plant ceul be grown 
nicely in a 45-deg. house 

sells a plant he can make them 
pay and pay well, considering 
all the graceful, long, stemmed 
cut flowers a plant will furnish 
during the Winter and Spring 
months. The Myosotis-shaped 
little blossoms of dainty light 
rose, lavender, and white can 
be used to advantage in almost 
any flower arrangement, 
whether a corsage, a wedding 
bouquet, a dinner decoration 
or a funeral design. 

Cultural requirements for 
this species are practically the 
same as for the Chinese Prim- 
ulas, only a 2-in. plant by 
August is plenty large enough 



had in full bloom by Christ- 
mas. They require a cool, 
airy house during the Summer 
months and a little shade; they 
will need shifting several times 
and should be given all the room 
necessary to grow into short, 
bushy stock. You cannot 
crowd them and get results; a 
50-deg. house, from October 
on and full sunlight is what 
they want. 

Primula malacoides 

This is called the Baby 
Primrose and has replaced P. 
Forbes ii entirely. New, im- 
proved strains are being in- 
tro