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Full text of "Handy book of fruit culture under glass"

3D? 502 






HANDY BOOK OF THE FLOWER-GARDEN; 

BEING PRACTICAL DIRECTIONS FOR THE CULTURE, PROPAGATION, AND ARRANGE- 
MENT OF PLANTS IN FLOWER-GARDENS ALL THE TEAR ROUND. 

Embracing all Classes of Gardens, from the largest to the smallest. 
BY DAVID THOMSON, 

Editor of ' The Gardener.' 

A New and Enlarged Edition, with Engraved and Coloured Plans, illustrative 

of the various systems of Grouping in Beds and Borders. 

Crown 8vo, 7s. 6d. 

"On Flower-Gardens a manual of modern dimensions has been much wanted; 
that is to say, a bona fide manual by a practical man, having sympathies with his 
vocation, and of sufficient standing therein to claim the attention both of amateurs 
and professionals. Such a want is supplied by Mr David Thomson, who seems to 
have had abundant experience in English floriculture, in which he has been engaged, 
it would appear, both near London and in various parts of England and Scotland. 
... To sum up, this 'Handy Book' deserves a welcome from all classes in- 
terested in floriculture." Saturday Review. 

"One of the very few books of its kind in which the amateur, instead of being 
overwhelmed by details, has the principles which are to guide him put plainly and 
clearly before him, so that he may be able to think and judge for himself. . . . 
Those who have only small and moderate means and appliances, even if they have 
merely a patch of ground, a few beds in front of a parlour-window even, will find 
this book of use. . . . The directions for the growth and management of hardy 
and half-hardy annuals, and of plants generally, not omitting ferns, aquatics, and 
flowering shrubs suitable for beds and shrubbery borders, have the merit of being 
perfectly plain ; every necessary detail of cultivation is given, and all the selections 
which he has made are so marked in the type that the person who has means for 
only a small collection can see at a glance which it is best for him to begin with." 
Pall Mall Gazette. 

" We are acquainted with the results produced by the able author, as well as with 
his book, and therefore can pronounce the book the best on the subject yet written, 
or likely to be written for a long time to come." The Field. 



A PRACTICAL TREATISE ON 

THE CULTIVATION OF THE GRAPE VINE. 
BY WILLIAM THOMSON, 

Tweed Vineyard. 
Ninth Edition, octavo, 5s. 

"We cannot too strongly recommend Mr Thomson's treatise as a thoroughly 
practical and sure guide to the cultivation of the vine." Journal of Horticulture. 

"We urge our readers to procure the work, and they will get so clear an insight 
into vine-growing that a vinery will become one of the necessaries of existence. 
Field. 



HANDY BOOK OF ORNAMENTAL CONIFERS 

AND OF RHODODENDRONS AND OTHER AMERICAN 
FLOWERING SHRUBS. 

Suitable for the Climate and Soils of Britain. With Descriptions of the best Kinds, 
and Useful Hints for their Successful Cultivation. 

BY HUGH FRASER, 

Fellow of the Botanical Society of Edinburgh. 

Crown 8vo, 6s. 



Shortly will be published, the Fifth Edition, Revised and Improved. 

THE FOEESTEE: 

A PRACTICAL TREATISE ON 
THE PLANTING, REARING, AND GENERAL MANAGEMENT OF FOREST-TREES. 

BY JAMES BROWN, 

Wood-Surveyor and Nurseryman. 
New Edition, royal 8vo, with numerous Engravings. 

"What we have stated in these columns we now repeat, that the book before us 
is the most useful guide to good arboriculture in the English language." Dr Lind- 
ley in the Gardeners' Chronicle. 

" Beyond all doubt this is the best work on the subject of forestry extant." 
Jour)ial of Horticulture. 



HANDBOOK 

OF 

HAEDY HEEBACEOUS AND ALPINE FLOWERS 

FOR GENERAL GARDEN DECORATION. 

Containing Descriptions, in Plain Language, of upwards of 1000 Species ; 

along with Concise and Plain Instructions for 

their Propagation and Culture. 

BY WILLIAM SUTHERLAND, 

Formerly Manager of the Herbaceous Department at Kew. 



" This is an unpretending but valuable work, well adapted to furnish information 
respecting a class of plants certainly rising in popular estimation. ... We cordi- 
ally recommend his book to the notice of our readers, as likely to be, from a garden- 
ing point of view, the standard work on Herbaceous Plants. Gardeners' Chronicle. 

"The best book of its class available for English readers." Gardeners' Magazine. 



CULTIVATED PLANTS: 

THEIR PROPAGATION AND IMPROVEMENT. 

Including Natural and Artificial Hybridisation, Raising from Seed, Cuttings, and 

Layers, Grafting and Budding, as applied to the Families and 

Genera in Cultivation. 

BY F. W. BURBIDGE, 

Author of ' Cool Orchids, and how to Grow Them.' 

With 191 Engravings. Crown Svo, pp. 630, 12s. 6d. 

"A book full of information." Field. 

"The knowledge of the whole horticultural world has been carefully gleaned to 
enrich the author's experience, and all is set forth in an admirable and scientific 
manner, which Avill commend itself to the reader, whose interest in flowers and 
fruit extends to the mysteries of their production, as well as to the scientific culti- 
vation of plants." Westminster Review. 

" The amateur and the practical gardener will here at once learn the best methods 
for actual work among their plants,. and receive hints for further original develop- 
ment." Glasgow Herald. 

"We cannot, therefore, too earnestly commend the book to the attention of all 
who really wish to make some advance in this, the most fascinating and engrossing 
department of horticulture." Morning Post. 



DOMESTIC FLOKICULTUKE, 

WINDOW-GARDENING, AND FLORAL DECORATIONS. 

BEING DIRECTIONS FOR THE PROPAGATION, CULTURE, AND ARRANGEMENT 
OF PLANTS AND FLOWERS AS DOMESTIC ORNAMENTS. 

BY F. W. BURBIDGE. 

New Edition, Revised and Enlarged. 
With upwards of 200 Illustrations on Wood. Crown Svo, 7s. 6d. 

" A charmingly illustrated vade-mecum on Window-Gardening, Floral Decoration, 
and the whole field of adaptation of floral science to domestic ornament. Those 
who have not seen the first edition as yet are unaware what wrinkles for window 
and balcony gardening, on a large or small scale, for bouquet or wreath making, for 
table arrangement of fruit and flowers, room arrangement of plants in the form of 
screen, bower, and arch, and last, not least, church decoration in all its phases, 
Mr Burbidge places intelligibly within their reach. ... An admirable com- 
panion for every boudoir." Academy. 

" This book will meet the case of thousands who love flowers, and know not how 
to begin or, having begun, know not how to go on in collecting and cultivating 
them. . . . It is a model of painstaking accuracy and good taste." Gardeners' 
Magazine. 



A MANUAL OE BOTANY, 

ANATOMICAL AND PHYSIOLOGICAL. FOR THE USE OF STUDENTS. 
BY ROBERT BROWN, M.A., PH.D., F.R.G.S. 

Crown Svo, with numerous Illustrations. 12s. 6d. 

" We have no hesitation in recommending this volume to our readers as being the 
best and most reliable of the many works on botany yet issued. . . . His manual 
will, if we mistake not, be eagerly consulted and attentively studied by all those 
who take an interest in the science of botany." Civil Service Gazette. 



THE BOOK OF THE GAEDEK 

BY CHARLES M'INTOSH, 

Formerly Curator of the Royal Gardens of his Majesty the King of the Belgians, 

and lately of those of his Grace the Duke of Buccleuch, K.G., 

at Dalkeith Palace. 

In Two large volumes, royal 8vo, embellished with 1350 Engravings. 

VOL. I. ON THE FORMATION OF GARDENS AND CONSTRUCTION OF 

GARDEN EDIFICES. 776 pages and 1073 Engravings. 2, 10s. 
VOL. II. PRACTICAL GARDENING. 868 pages and 279 Engravings. l,17s.6d. 

"We strongly recommend 'The Book of the Garden.' To gardeners, in every 
way, it will be indispensable; and not less so to country gentlemen, architects, 
and surveyors, who will find it the best authority on the subject they can refer to." 
The Florist, 



PRICE SIXPENCE, MONTHLY. 

THE GAKDE:N T EK: 

A MAGAZINE OF HORTICULTURE AND FLORICULTURE. 

EDITED BY DAVID THOMSON, 

Author of 'A Handy Book of the Flower-Garden,' &c. 

ASSISTED BY A STAFF OF THE BEST PRACTICAL WRITERS. 

Yearly Subscription, 7s., free by Post. 



Just published. Fourth Edition. 

THE HAKDY BOOK OF BEES, 

AND THEIR PROFITABLE MANAGEMENT. 

BY A. PETTIGREW. 

New Edition, Revised and Enlarged. Crown Svo, 3s. 6d. 

"The author of this volume is evidently a practical man, and knows a great deal 
more about bees and their habits than most of the bee-keepers in England : indeed 
he may be said to be a very master in the art of bee mysteries." Bell's Life in 
London. 

"This volume is throughout so obviously the result of observation and ripe 
experience as to leave no doubt of its value as a manual for the apiarist." Bristol 
Mercury. 

"How to manage bees properly, so as to make a profit, is so clearly and pleas- 
antly told in this capital work, that we need not trespass on its pages longer." 
Sherborne Journal. 

"We recommend his book to all who wish to spread a knowledge of this useful 
art among their neighbours and friends." Land and Water. 



WILLIAM BLACKWOOD & SONS, EDINBURGH AND LONDON. 



HANDY BOOK 



OF 



FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS 



HANDY BOOK 



OF 



FRUIT CULTUKE UNDER GLASS 



BY 



DAVID THOMSON 

a 

AUTHOR OF 'HANDY BOOK OF THE FLOWER-GARDEN,' 'A PRACTICAL 
TREATISE ON THE CULTURE OF THE PINE-APPLE,' ETC. 



? 



SECOND EDITION, 11EVISED AND ENLARGED 



WILLIAM BLACKWOOD AND SONS 

EDINBURGH AND LONDON 
MDCCgLXXXI 



' . 



PREFACE. 



THE culture under glass of the fruits treated on in 
this book, has, in some instances, been included in 
larger and more compendious works on horticulture 
in general ; and on the other hand, various smaller 
works have appeared, each occupied exclusively by 
one fruit. 

But there is not, so far as I am aware, any book of 
moderate size in which the forcing and general culture 
of these fruits collectively is discussed. The present 
Handy Book has been written with a view to supply- 
ing this want ; and the Author indulges the hope that, 
compact as it is, it will be found to contain every 
necessary detail with regard to such culture. 

In writing it, he has kept specially in view the 
requirements of inexperienced amateurs who wish to 
superintend their own fruit -houses, and of young 
gardeners entering on the study of their profession. 

348917 



vi PREFACE. 

All the fruits which are most generally cultivated 
under glass have been included among the subjects 
discussed ; and the systems on which they are 
recommended to be grown are those which it is 
considered yield the most speedy and certain return 
with a minimum of labour and cost. 

DAVID THOMSON. 

DRUMLAXRIG GARDENS. 



CONTENTS. 



PAGE 

THE PINE-APPLE, 1 

Pineries, - . . 2 

Varieties of pines, ......... 9 

Soil, 13 

Propagation, . . . . . . . . . .15 

Suckers, 16 

Succession plants spring treatment, ..... 20 

Succession plants summer and autumn treatment, . . 27 
Fruiting plants, . . . . . . . . .35 

Retarding and keeping pine-apples after they are ripe, . . 40 
How to keep up a constant succession of ripe fruit all the year, 42 
Plants that miss fruiting, ....... 45 

The planting-out system, ....... 46 

Insects to which the pine is subject, . . . . .47 

THE GRAPE VINE, 50 

Site for vineries, . . . . . . . . .52 

Vinery for early forcing, ....... 53 

Vinery for late grapes, 56 

Drainage, .......... 59 

Borders their composition, " . .61 

Varieties of grapes, 68 

Selecting vines for planting, 70 

Preparing young vines for planting, . . . . .71 
Time and manner of planting vines, . . . . .77 
Treatment the season they are planted, . . . . .81 
Management of vines the second season, . . . . 86 
Management of vines the third and fruiting year, . . .90 
Weight of crop, thinning, disbudding, &c., .... 96 



Vlll CONTENTS. 

Spur-pruning for next season's crop, ..... 98 

Training, . . . .100 

Keeping grapes through the winter, . . ... .101 

General management of borders, . . ,. . 102 

Renovating exhausted vines, 105 

The pot-culture of grapes, . . ^^ 107 

Inarching vines, . . . . . . . . .108 

Setting up grapes for exhibition, 110 

Packing grapes, ..-;-. . . . . . 112 

Insects to which vines are subject, . . ' . . . . 114 

Diseases to which vines are subject, . . . . .130 

THE PEACH AND NECTARINE, . . . . . . .136 

Peach-house for early forcing, 138 

Peach-house when ripe peaches are not required before July, . 139 

Drainage, depth, and width of border, 143. 

Soil, 144 

Varieties for early forcing, . . . . . . .146 

Propagation and selection of trees, 147 

Planting, 151 

Pruning and training, . . . . . . . .152 

Disbudding, or summer pruning, 159 

Thinning the fruit, 161 

Root-pruning, ......... 162 

Forcing and general management, 163 

Dressing the trees and borders, 164 

Temperature, . . . . . . . . .165 

Ventilation, . . . . . . . . . .167 

Moisture in the air and syringing, . . . . . .168 

Setting the fruit, 169 

Watering, 170 

Ripening and gathering the fruit, 171 

Packing peaches to be sent to a distance, .... 172 

Insects, . . . . . . . . . .173 

174 



THE FIG, 176 

Fig-house, .... 180 

Soil and formation of border, . ...... 181 

Varieties of figs, 183 

Propagation, 184 

Time and manner of planting, 189 

Training and general management the first year, . . .191 
Pruning and pinching, . . . . . . . .193 



CONTENTS. ix 

Figsinpots, . . ,: ; ,*' . :. .: ..">'.. . 197 

Forcing and general management, . . . . . -.. . 200 

Temperature, watering, &c., . . , . : . . 201 

Ripening the fruit, . . . 203 

Second crop, .......... 204 

Insects and diseases, . . . . . . . . 205 

Packing figs, .......... 206 

THE MELON, . . . . . . . . . . 207 

Growing melons in dung-beds or pits, . . . . . 210 

Sowing the seed, and management of young plants, . . 211 

Training and stopping, . 213 

Soil and planting, &c., . . . . . . . .214 

Moulding up temperature, . . . . . . .216 

Impregnation, watering, &c., 217 

Culture in melon-houses trained on wires near the glass form 

of house, depth of soil, &c., ...... 220 

Preparing the plants, planting, &c., ..... 223 

Watering, &c., 224 

Temperature and syringing, . . . . . . . 225 

Ventilation, .......... 226 

Impregnation, training, and stopping, . . . . . 226 

Very early forcing, ........ 227 

Varieties 229 

Insects and diseases, 229 

THE STRAWBERRY, 231 

The best runners, . . . . .... . . 232 

Preparing runners for their fruiting-pots, .... 233 

Soil and potting, &c., 234 

Strawberry-house 239 

Forcing, 240 

Setting and thinning the fruit, &c., ..... 242 

Insects to which they are subject, . . . . . . 245 

Strawberries in a greenhouse or pit, . . ... . 245 

Tying up the fruit-stalks, &c., 246 

Packing ripe strawberries for carrying, ..... 247 

Preparing fruit for exhibition, 248 

Varieties for forcing, ........ 249 

THE CUCUMBER, 251 

The seed-bed, 252 

Sowing the seeds, and treatment of the young plants, . . 253 

Fruiting-pits, planting-out, &c., 257 






PREFACE. 



THE culture under glass of the fruits treated on in 
this book, has, in some instances, been included in 
larger and more compendious works on horticulture 
in general; and on the other hand, various smaller 
works have appeared, each occupied exclusively by 
one fruit. 

But there is not, so far as I am aware, any book of 
moderate size in which the forcing and general culture 
of these fruits collectively is discussed. The present 
Handy Book has been written with a view to supply- 
ing this want ; and the Author indulges the hope that, 
compact as it is, it will be found to contain every 
necessary detail with regard to such culture. 

In writing it, he has kept specially in view the 
requirements of inexperienced amateurs who wish to 
superintend their own fruit -houses, and of young 
gardeners entering on the study of their profession. 

348917 



vi PREFACE. 

All the fruits which are most generally cultivated 
under glass have been included among the subjects 
discussed ; and the systems on which they are 
recommended to be grown are those which it is 
considered yield the most speedy and certain return 
with a minimum of labour and cost. 

DAVID THOMSON. 

DRUMLANRIG GARDENS. 



CONTENTS. 



PAGE 

THE PINE-APPLE, . . . : . ''. . '. '-. "'. 1 

Pineries, .......... 2 

Varieties of pines, ......... 9 

Soil, 13 

Propagation, .......... 15 

Suckers, 16 

Succession plants spring treatment, ..... 20 

Succession plants summer and autumn treatment, . . 27 
Fruiting plants, . . . . . . . . .35 

Retarding and keeping pine-apples after they are ripe, . . 40 

How to keep up a constant succession of ripe fruit all the year, 42 

Plants that miss fruiting, ....... 45 

The planting-out system, ....... 46 

Insects to which the pine is subject, . . . . .47 

THE GRAPE VINE, 50 

Site for vineries, . . . . . . . . .52 

Vinery for early forcing, 53 

Vinery for late grapes, 56 

Drainage, .......... 59 

Borders their composition, . . . . . .61 

Varieties of grapes, 68 

Selecting vines for planting, . . . . . . .70 

Preparing young vines for planting, . . . . .71 

Time and manner of planting vines, . . . . .77 

Treatment the season they are planted, ..... 81 

Management of vines the second season, . . . . 86 

Management of vines the third and fruiting year, . . .90 
"Weight of crop, thinning, disbudding, &c., .... 96 



viii CONTENTS. 

Spur-pruning for next season's crop, ... . . .98 

Training, . 100 

Keeping grapes through the winter, . . ... .101 

General management of borders, . . . . . 102 

Renovating exhausted vines, . . . . . . .105 

The pot-culture of grapes, . . . . . . .107 

Inarching vines, .... *;-- . . . .108 

Setting up grapes for exhibition, 110 

Packing grapes, 112 

Insects to which vines are subject, . . . . . .114 

Diseases to which vines are subject, . . . . .130 

THE PEACH AND NECTARINE, 136 

Peach-house for early forcing 138 

Peach-house when ripe peaches are not required before July, . 139 
Drainage, depth, and width of border, ..... 143. 

Soil, 144 

Varieties for early forcing 146 

Propagation and selection of trees, . . . . . .147 

Planting, 151 

Pruning and training, . . . . . . . .152 

Disbudding, or summer pruning, 159 

Thinning the fruit, 161 

Root-pruning, . . . . . . . . .162 

Forcing and general management, . . . . . .163 

Dressing the trees and borders, 164 

Temperature, 165 

Ventilation, 167 

Moisture in the air and syringing, . . . . . .168 

Setting the fruit, 169 

Watering, .......... 170 

Ripening and gathering the fruit, 171 

Packing peaches to be sent to a distance, . . . .172 

Insects, . . . . . . . . . .173 

Diseases, . . . . . . . . . .174 

THE FIG, 176 

Fig-house, .... 180 

Soil and formation of border, . . . . . . .181 

Varieties of figs, . . . . . . . . .183 

Propagation, .......... 184 

Time and manner of planting, ...... 189 

Training and general management the first year, . . .191 
Pruning and pinching, 193 



CONTENTS. IX 

Figs in pots, 197 

Forcing and general management, ...... 200 

Temperature, watering, &c., . . . ,.* '.. ' ' - ; . 201 

Ripening the fruit, ^ ...'.. . . ' , . . 203 

Second crop, . ' ' .. . . . . . . -. . . 204 

Insects and diseases, . . . . . ..'*..-. 205 

Packing figs, . . . . . . . .. ': ..' . 206 

THE MELON, . .. ..207 

Growing melons in dung-beds or pits, 210 

Sowing the seed, and management of young plants, . .211 

Training and stopping, . . . . . .-.'. 213 

Soil and planting, &c., . . . . . . . .214 

Moulding up temperature, . . . . . . . 216 

Impregnation, watering, &c., ...... 217 

Culture in melon-houses trained on wires near the glass form 

of house, depth of soil, &c., 220 

Preparing the plants, planting, &c., 223 

Watering, &c., 224 

Temperature and syringing, ....... 225 

Ventilation, 226 

Impregnation, training, and stopping, . . . . . 226 

Very early forcing, 227 

Varieties , . 229 

Insects and diseases, ........ 229 

THE STRAWBERRY, 231 

The best runners, 232 

Preparing runners for their fmiting-pots, .... 233 

Soil and potting, &c., 234 

Strawberry-house, 239 

Forcing, 240 

Setting and thinning the fruit, &c., . . . . .242 

Insects to which they are subject, 245 

Strawberries in a greenhouse or pit, ..... 245 
Tying up the fruit-stalks, &c., . . . *. . .246 

Packing ripe strawberries for carrying, 247 

Preparing fruit for exhibition, ...... 248 

Varieties for forcing, ........ 249 

THE CUCUMBER, 251 

The seed-bed, 252 

Sowing the seeds, and treatment of the young plants, . . 253 

Fruiting-pits, planting-out, &c., ...... 257 



X CONTENTS. 

Preparing the pit for the plants, soil, &e., . f . . 258 

Management after planting in the fruiting-pit, . . . 259 

"Watering and stopping, &c., . . . . . , . . 261 

Winter cucumbers .... . .263 

Cucumber-houses, . . . . . . . . .264 

Soil, &c., 265 

Planting, temperature, &c., ....... 266 

Insects, 268 

Diseases, 268 

Varieties, . 269 

THE CALENDAR, 270 

January, 270 

February, 274 

March, 277 

April, 281 

May, 285 

June, 289 

July, 292 

August, 296 

September, 299 

October, 303 

November, 306 

December, .......... 309 

A FEW OBSERVATIONS ON HEATING BY HOT WATER, . .313 

INDEX, 319 



HANDY BOOK 



OF 



FEUIT CULTUEE UNDEK GLASS. 



THE PINE-APPLE. 

THIS noble fruit lias derived the name of pine-apple 
from its striking resemblance in shape to the cones of 
some of the pine-trees. It is probably the most rich 
and luscious of fruits. "Three hundred years ago it 
was described by Jean de Levy, a Huguenot priest, as 
being of such excellence that the gods might luxuriate 
upon it, and that it should only be gathered by the 
hands of a Venus/' 

Some say that it is a native of Brazil, and found its 
way from that country to the East. It is, however, not 
very clearly determined to what part of the world we 
are indebted for the pine-apple ; and there is little doubt 
that it is also a native of the West Indies, for many of 
its varieties are found growing wild on the continent 
and islands of the West. It was first brought into 
Europe by a Dutch merchant, and introduced into this 
country from Holland in 1690; and first cultivated for 
the dessert by Mr Bentinck, ancestor to the present 
ducal family of Portland. 

A 



^^^M^UlrC^LTURE UNDER GLASS 



The superior cultivation of the pine-apple has always 
been regarded as one of the greatest triumphs of hor- 
ticulturists. Improved practice is perhaps as much 
apparent in pine-culture as in any branch of horticul- 
ture. Superior results are now attained in eighteen 
months to what it required twice that time to produce 
in the recollection of the writer. To Mr James Barnes, 
late gardener at Bicton Park, Devonshire, we are in- 
debted for exposing and discontinuing the erroneous 
practice of annually disrooting pine plants, and subject- 
ing them to too high a soil temperature. This was the 
first step in contracting the period considered necessary 
to bring the pine-apple to maturity. And of more re- 
cent date is the very general cultivation of the pine- 
apple in much smaller pots than were used some thirty- 
five years ago : and where the pot system is practised, 
the use of smaller pots makes them more easily man- 
aged, and at less expense. 

PINERIES. 

That which naturally claims attention first in treat- 
ing on the cultivation of the pine-apple is, the descrip- 
tion of houses or pineries which afford the greatest con- 
venience and facilities for first-rate cultivation, their 
situation, and the exposure which they should occupy. 

The situation should be one well sheltered from 
cutting winds, and having a full south aspect. There 
is nothing that necessitates hard firing to keep up a 
given temperature more than exposure to high winds ; 
and the atmosphere will be the more conducive to 
healthy growth the less firing is required to maintain 
the heat. Therefore, shelter from north, east, and west 
should be taken into consideration in the erection of 



THE PINE-APPLE. 3 

pineries, especially if the situation is naturally ex- 
posed to high winds. It must, however, be home in 
mind, that whatever the sheltering objects, they must 
not be allowed to interfere with full exposure to sun- 
shine at all seasons of the year. 

During by far the greater portion of the year, pines 
cannot possibly have more light and sun than are neces- 
sary to produce a stocky fruitful growth in the dull 
atmosphere which so much prevails in this country. 
Pineries should therefore be constructed so as to admit 
and diffuse as much light and sunshine as can be had. 
In the few months when at times the sun may be more 
scorching than is desirable, a slight shading can easily 
be applied. When the sash -and -rafter principle is 
adopted, I would advise that the sashes should not be 
less than 6 feet wide, and divided into five openings 
or panes of glass. 

For summer growth I would give the preference to 




FIG. 1. 

span -roofed houses, running north and south (fig. 1). 
In the morning and afternoon they receive the full 
sun ; and for a period in the middle of the day, when 
the sun is in meridian, the pines are, in such houses, 
partially shaded from the scorching rays of the sun, 
while at the same time they are exposed to a great 
diffusion of light. Such houses are decidedly the best 



4 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

for summer growth ; but, for six months of the year, 
they do not, from their position, embrace so much 
direct sunshine as a lean-to house facing due south. 
Moreover, from the greater amount of glass as a radi- 
ating surface in span-roofed houses, they require more 
fire-heat to keep up the temperature. In these respects 
the lean-to gives advantages over the span-roofed pinery, 
in whatever position the latter is placed. Tor starting- 
pines in December and the two following months, as 
well as for swelling off fruit during winter and early 
spring, I recommend lean-to houses, as represented by 
fig. 2. 




FIG. 2. 

The dimensions of the two pineries represented by 
the woodcuts, are 40 feet by 18 feet, which give a house 
of handsome proportions. But as the extent of the 
pineries must be guided entirely by the supply required, 
I will not enter further into this question. Suffice it to 
say, that it is more desirable to have several structures 
of moderate size than a less number of larger ones. A 
constant succession of ripe fruit is much more easily 
kept up by having a number of compartments. 




THE PINE-APPLE. 5 

For suckers, a common lean-to pit, as represented 
by fig. 3, is very well adapted, as the young plants can 
be kept near the glass, and 
well exposed to light. Where 
expense is not an object, 
and for the sake of con- 
venience, this pit may be 
wider, and have a path 
along the back, in which FlG - 3 * 

case another row of pipes will be necessary. But as 
the woodcuts given will explain more correctly than 
words the description of pineries recommended, I will 
not extend my remarks under this heading. It will 
be observed that the accommodation which I prefer and 
recommend is partly span-roofed and partly lean-to. 

In the formation of the pine ground, the lean-to or 
early houses should be on the north of the space 
selected, so that the back affords the shelter from the 
north which is so desirable; the span-roofed structures 
to stand north and south, or at right angles with the 
early lean-to houses, and at a sufficient distance from 
them not to obstruct sunshine. The early house is 
thus nearest the boiler in the back shed, and forms 
the very best shelter to the span-roofed or succession 
pits, which should not be very high. I am aware, 
indeed, from experience, that such houses and arrange- 
ments are not absolutely necessary for the production 
of first-rate pines ; but they aiford great advantages 
and convenience, and I recommend them as admirably 
adapted for the culture of this noble fruit. 

The pine-apple being a fruit which requires a high 
temperature, particularly in some of its stages of 
growth, there should be a good command of heat both 
for top and bottom. It is not only a false economy to 



6 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS, 

stint the amount of pipes employed, but a larger heat- 
ing surface moderately heated is much more conducive 
to the health of plants than a smaller surface kept at 
scorching heat. I therefore recommend, as shown in 
the sections given, a liberal amount of pipes and plenty 
of boiler-power. Besides this I feel fully persuaded, 
from my experience, that coverings applied to the 
glass, particularly in the case of fruit swelling off 
during the colder months of the year, are an immense 
advantage. A high and steady temperature can be 
much more easily and economically maintained, and 
without a parched atmosphere, which in the case of 
hard forcing in winter requires so much and such con- 
stant counteracting. 

I have a decided objection to flat-roofed pineries. 
They are dark, and very productive of drip in winter 
conditions the most undesirable in the culture of 
most plants, and especially so in that of the pine- 
apple. Ventilation should be amply provided for at 
the apex of the roof; and, particularly in fruiting- 
houses, there should also be ventilators at intervals 
along the front, so placed as to cause the air to pass 
inward in contact with the hot-water pipes. Front 
ventilation is not to be recommended as a rule ; but 
it is well to provide for it in the erection of pineries, 
so that in very hot calm days it can be applied, 
especially in the case of fruit that are colouring. 

All pineries and pits should be provided with a 
steadily-acting steaming apparatus, which can be used 
or not according as circumstances demand. 

A great many methods of supplying moisture to the 
atmosphere of hothouses have been adopted such as 
zinc troughs placed on the pipes, troughs cast on the 
pipes themselves, a flow of water running in an open 



THE PINE-APPLE. / 

gutter, rising out of the flow-pipe at one end of the 
house and dropping into the return at the other. I 
have tried all these ways, and more besides, and con- 
sider them all inferior to that represented by fig. 4. 
This is a flat-bottomed open gutter or trough, 6 inches 
wide, and 2J inches deep, running the whole length 
of the house. In the centre and along the whole 
length of the trough is fixed a rain-water or lead pipe, 
2J inches in diameter. This, as will be seen, is con- 
nected with the flow-pipe as it leaves the boiler, and 
with the return-pipe at the other end of the house. 
At the middle of the house a tap is fitted into the 
2 J -inch pipe; a flow of water from the tap can be 
so adjusted as to let water sufficient trickle into the 




FIG. 4. 

trough to keep it full and the small pipe nearly 
immersed in water. The supply to the boiler being 
by ball-cock, the small quantity of water that escapes 
from the tap is constantly supplied. This apparatus 
requires next to no attention, and heats regularly the 
whole length of the house. In open gutters without 
this small pipe, we have always found too much steam 
at one end of the house and next to none at the other, 
especially in long houses. The arrangement we recom- 
mend is quite equal in heating power to a row of 
4-inch pipe. When atmospheric moisture is not re- 



8 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

quired, the water can be dried up out of the trough 
by simply turning the tap. This system of supplying 
moisture is applicable in the case of forcing the other 
fruits treated of in this volume. The pipes should 
also be so arranged that, by means of stop-cocks, the 
bottom-heat can be shut off, and applied and regulated 
according to the amount recommended for the different 
stages of the growth of the pine. 

In all pine-stoves where there is not a supply of 
soft water from lake or stream, there should be a tank 
into which to conduct the rain-water from the roof, 
and passing through the tank a coil of hot-water pipe 
to warm it. This, in cases where pines are grown 
extensively, saves a vast amount of trouble in warm- 
ing water, or in drawing it from the heating apparatus, 
which latter, for several reasons, is not desirable. 

The arrangement of the plants in the various kinds 
of pineries is a matter worth referring to. In lean-to 
houses the tallest plants should always be in the back 
row, and in span-roofed houses they should be placed 
in the centre row, so that in each case the plants form 
a sloping bank of foliage all fully exposed to the sun. 
Where the plants are of very equal growth, the centre 
of the bed in span-roofed houses should be a little 
higher. 

As I intend to refer to the management of the leaf- 
and-tan bed in the cultural directions to be given, I 
will not here enter on that question. I may just state 
that, apart from the increased labour and liability to 
violent heating, I have a warm side for the tan-and- 
leaf bed for pine-growing. I consider the heat derived 
from this old-fashioned source second to none other 
for the production of fine pines. Yet I would never 
prefer it to hot water, because it entails more labour 



THE PINE-APPLE. 9 

and much more watchfulness, which, in these high- 
pressure days, is a powerful argument in favour of 
deriving all the heat from hot water, by which means 
it can be easily applied and regulated to a degree. 
Nevertheless, I intend to speak of the management 
that I adopt in the case of pines grown on a bed of 
leaves and tan for the supply of bottom -heat. To 
derive top-heat from fermenting material is a thing 
which, I believe, is now rarely thought of, and is, to 
say the least of it, an expensive and cumbrous system. 

VARIETIES OF PINES. 

In making a selection of varieties, it is not necessary 
to have many in order to keep up a constant supply of 
first-rate pines. I believe I am correct in saying that 
nearly all pine-growers have discontinued the practice of 
growing so many varieties as were commonly grown 
many years ago, and will not, therefore, give an ex- 
tended list, but will enumerate and shortly describe 
those which are considered the best, and indispensable 
in pine-growing establishments of ordinary dimensions. 

THE QUEEN. This old and well-known variety still 
holds its position as one of the best for ripening from 
May till the end of October. It is a free grower, dwarf 
and compact in habit, a very certain fruiter, comes 
quickly to maturity, is very handsome in shape, and 
of a rich golden colour. Its flavour, as "a summer and 
autumn pine, is not excelled by any other, and it keeps 
in good condition for three weeks after being ripe. It 
propagates itself freely by suckers. From May till 
the end of October there is no pine to surpass it for 
general excellence; but it will not swell freely in win- 
ter, and, as a winter pine, is generally wanting in juici- 



10 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

ness and flavour. The Bipley and Moscow Queens are 
distinct varieties of this, and both good. 

SMOOTH-LEAVED CAYENNE. Taken as a whole, this 
is the finest pine I know for supplying ripe fruit from 
October till May, and is the most generally useful 
variety in cultivation. It swells more freely, and is 
more juicy in winter, than any other pine that I have 
grown, and its flavour is excellent. The habit of the 
plant is somewhat taller than the Queen, and more 
spreading, with very broad, brittle, dark-green leaves. 
It is a large and handsome fruit, and, when well swelled, 
weighs a pound for every pip in depth. Colour a rich 
yellow, shape slightly conical ; when swelled to its 
best it is rather barrel-shaped. This splendid pine has 
taken a high position in most collections. For some 
time spurious smooth-leaved varieties were thrown on 
the market for this one, and in consequence it fell into 
considerable disrepute; but it has now fairly established 
its deservedly high position among pines. It should 
be in all collections. 

BLACK JAMAICA. Tall and erect in growth, a certain 
fruiter, medium size, with large flat pips, rather dull in 
colour, very high flavoured, probably the highest flav- 
oured winter pine in cultivation ; but some object to 
its hardness of flesh, and prefer the Smooth Cayenne 
on account of the melting juiciness of the latter. Still 
there can be no doubt of the excellence of the flavour 
of this variety, and a few of it should be cultivated 
wherever winter pines are esteemed. 

WHITE PROVIDENCE. A strong and tall-growing 
variety. Leaves very broad, and covered with down. 
It yields the largest fruit of any variety in cultivation. 
Globular in form, with very large flat pips. Flavour 
quite second-rate. It is an easily-grown and free- 



THE PINE-APPLE. II 

fruiting pine ; but unless where there is plenty of room 
it is not to be recommended, and a few plants are suffi- 
cient in the largest collection. 

CHARLOTTE EOTHSCHILD. Eesembles the Smooth 
Cayenne in size and habit of plant, but its leaves are 
studded with strong . spines ; fruit large, flavour good ; 
is a splendid winter pine in this respect almost equal 
to the Cayenne ; is a certain fruiter, and grows to a 
large size. I have ripened it in 11-inch pots, weighing 
11 Ib. It should be in every collection. 

PRINCE ALBERT. A tall but very compact grower, 
can be grown in the same space as a Queen. Fruit 
large, conical, very showy ; crown small. Swells well 
in winter. Flesh soft, very juicy and well flavoured. 
Free fruiter. It has the fault of not keeping many 
days after it is ripe, and often large fruits of it begin 
to decay at their base before they are coloured to the 
top. A few only should be grown. 

LAMBTON CASTLE SEEDLING. This splendid variety 
was put into commerce in 1878, and it fully maintains 
its good character. Kemarkable for its free-fruiting 
habit and large fruit. We believe it is capable of being 
grown to 12 Ib. weight. Fig. 5 is an engraving from 
a photograph of a fruit ripened in midwinter at Lamb- 
ton Castle on a plant 1 9 months old. The fruit meas- 
ured 12 inches high and 20 inches in circumference, 
and weighed over 10 Ib. ; and including the crown, the 
height from the surface of the pot did not exceed 30 
inches. Colour of fruit high orange. Foliage robust, 
and thinly furnished with unusually strong spines. 
Keeps well after being ripe, and is exceedingly juicy 
and well flavoured. 

There are a great many more varieties which I might 
describe, such as different varieties of the Queen, Black 



12 



FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 



Prince, Enville, Prickly Cayenne, Globe, Antigua, and 
Blood-red, &c. ; but though they are all distinct, they 
have characteristics which depreciate them ; and unless 
in large establishments where they are grown for the 




FJG. 5. 



sake of mere variety, they have no claims upon the 
space at the disposal of pine-growers in general ; and 
as I prefer to occupy space with cultural directions, 



THE PINE-APPLE. 13 

as being the more useful, I will not describe any of 
these varieties that I cannot recommend. In my own 
practice, I have found the Queen, Smooth Cayenne, 
Charlotte Eothschild, and Prince Albert the best and 



freest-fruiting. 



SOIL. 



Dr Lindley, in his ' Theory of Horticulture,' says, 
" We are informed by Beyrick, that the pine-apple in 
its wild state is found near the sea-shore the sand 
accumulated there in downs serving for its growth as 
well as for that of most of the species of the same 
family. The place where the best pine -apples are 
cultivated is of a similar nature. In the sandy plains, 
Praya Velha and Praya Grande, formed by the re- 
ceding of the sea, and in which few other plants will 
thrive, are the spots where the pine-apple grows best." 
Although the soil in which the pine-apple is found 
growing in its native or wild state cannot be taken 
as an absolute guide, still the fact that sand is its 
native choice would of itself serve to teach the cul- 
tivator that a heavy clayey soil, having a strong 
attraction for water, is not likely to be the most 
suitable for the healthy growth of pine-apples. I 
believe that practice has set its- seal to this ; at 
least my experience leads me to recommend a fibry 
calcareous loam in preference to that which all gar- 
deners know as a heavy and tenacious loam. That 
in which I have grown the best pines was taken from 
the surface of a rocky crag, and was very full of fibre. 
It should be collected and stacked for twelve months 
before it is used ; and a few months before being 
required for potting, put into a dry airy shed, breaking 
it up or teasing it with the hands not separating a 



14 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

particle of the fibre, but rather sifting or shaking a 
portion of the mouldy particles from it. It thus 
forms a soil with much more fibre in it than is gen- 
erally used for pines, and one which the soft, rather 
fleshy roots of the pine seem wonderfully to enjoy. 

This soil is used without any addition of manure 
consisting of animal excrement. I consider it very 
undesirable to use anything that has a tendency to 
produce a pasty, retentive tendency in the loam, or 
that would rapidly hasten the decomposition of the 
fibrous part of it. Animal excrement has a tendency 
to do both, and on that account I never use it for the 
pine : all that is added to or mixed with the loam 
is an 8 -inch potful of half-inch bones, and the same 
quantity of soot, to each barrowful of the loam. 
These mixtures are highly manurial, have a beneficial 
mechanical effect on the soil, and offer no inducement 
to the inroads of worms, but the contrary. 

I have always observed that the most vigorous of 
the roots are found in the most fibry part of the ball. 
Besides, turfy loam, free from all slimy matter, is 
regarded as the best medium for supplying nourish- 
ment in a liquid state, as will be found recommended 
further on in this treatise. I would therefore re- 
commend a friable loam, with all the verdure that 
grows on it such as the top three, or at most four, 
inches of an old pasture, where such can be had ; 
and should such not be attainable, and the cultivator 
therefore be obliged to use a heavier soil, I would re- 
commend that a portion of sand, pounded oyster-shells, 
charcoal, old plaster, or mortar-rubbish be mixed with 
it, to prevent its ever becoming compressed or puttied 
- a condition which is most injurious. 



THE PINE-APPLE. 15 



PROPAGATION. 

Generally there is little trouble in propagating and 
keeping up a stock of young plants, as the majority 
of varieties propagate themselves freely by suckers 
and crowns. The latter I never use, except in the 
case of some varieties which are very shy in produc- 
ing suckers such, for instance, as the Smooth-leaved 
Cayenne, and C. Eothschild. Suckers are much more 
desirable, and grow into strong plants more rapidly 
than crowns. Those varieties that do not produce 
suckers in sufficient abundance I always find easily 
enough increased by preserving the old plants from 
which the fruit is cut, stripping all the leaves off 
them, and placing them entire in shallow boxes, 
covering them to the depth of an inch with light 
rich soil, in a bottom-heat of 90. In this way 
every latent bud on the stems bursts into growth ; 
and as soon as they begin to emit roots, they are 
twisted carefully from the old stem, and potted in 
6 -inch pots. The stems may also be split up through 
the middle, cut into pieces according to the number 
of buds, potted singly in small pots, and plunged 
in bottom-heat. This plan gives more labour and 
requires more room, and sometimes the pieces rot 
before the buds start. However, either way can be 
practised with success. 

By this mode of propagation a clean stock can be 
produced from plants infested with scale. In this 
case the stems should be well scrubbed with soap 
and water before being placed in boxes or pots. In 
this way a perfectly clean set of plants have fre- 
quently been produced from stock which had been 
overrun with insects. 



l6 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

. SUCKERS. 

Suppose a quantity of suckers to come under treat- 
ment from the beginning of August to the middle of 
September- the time when suckers are generally in a 
fit state to be taken from plants that have produced 
the summer supply of fruit : let them be carefully 
detached from the parent plants, cut their rugged 
base smoothly off with the knife, and remove with 
the hand the short scaly leaves which cluster round 
their base, and under which appear the young roots. 
The leaves should not be removed any higher up than 
where these young roots assume a brownish hue. As 
this operation is proceeded with, the suckers, for con- 
venience, should be classed into two lots, the smaller 
and the larger being placed by themselves. The 
larger set, presuming that they are strong and healthy, 
are to be potted in 8 -inch, and the smaller in 6 -inch 
pots. The pots, if not new, should be well washed 
both outside and inside. The crocking should be 
efficiently performed, using rather finely broken crocks 
with all dust sifted out of them. They should be 
arranged in the bottom of the pots to the depth of 
one and a half inch in the 6 -inch, and two inches in 
the 8 -inch pots. Over the crocks should be placed 
a thin layer of dry moss or the most fibry part of the 
loam, and over all a sprinkling of fresh soot, which 
acts as a barrier to worms and affords a stimulant to 
the plants. 

In potting the suckers, place them sufficiently deep 
in the pots to keep them steadily in their places ; 
press the soil firmly about them with a blunt-pointed 
piece of wood, and leave it about three-quarters of an 
inch from the rim of the pots, that there may be no 



THE PINE- APPLE. \J 

difficulty in watering them when necessary. It being 
presumed that a pit was previously made ready for 
their reception, they should be plunged at once to the 
rim of the pot ; and should the bottom-heat be derived 
from leaves or tan, or both, and not likely to exceed 
90, the plunging material may be placed firmly round 
the pots; but if the heat is likely to exceed 90, let 
the material be placed lightly and openly round them. 
Let the plants be arranged as previously directed 
according to the structure of the pinery, and in doing 
so avoid crowding them together, the consequence of 
which is to draw the young plants up weakly and 
to make good plants of them afterwards is almost 
impracticable. 

They must now be shaded from the sun during the 
brightest part of the day for ten or fourteen days, or, 
in fact, till it be found that they are making roots. In 
the afternoon, when the shading is removed, they should 
have a gentle dewing overhead through a very fine rose. 
The shading and dewing must not be abruptly discon- 
tinued, but by degrees ; and entirely given up whenever 
the young roots are two or three inches long. Then they 
should have a watering with water at 85 sufficient to 
moisten the whole ball. After this they soon begin to 
grow freely, and air should be given early in the day 
when fine. A good supply of air, as much light as pos- 
sible, and a moderately moist atmosphere, with a very 
sparing use of the syringe only in hot weather, will 
prevent them from making a weakly drawn growth. 

From the time the suckers are potted, the great 
object is to obtain a compact sturdy growth as one 
of the principal points of future success, which will 
enable the plants to go through the rigours of winter 
with impunity. This is dependent chiefly upon free 

B 



18 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

exposure to light, a good supply of air without draught, 
and a moderate amount of heat and moisture both at 
the roots and in the air. 

The night temperature for September should range 
from 65 to 70, with 10 to 15 more for a while when 
shut up in the afternoon with sun-heat. After the 
middle of October the heat should be 5 less, and it 
should gradually decrease till, by the middle of No- 
vember, it is 55 to 60 at night according to the 
weather, with 5 more by day. During October the 
bottom-heat should not range higher than 85; and 
for the three following months I consider 75 quite 
sufficient to keep the roots healthy through these dull 
months. In olden times, when every sucker potted in 
autumn was deprived of its black and lifeless roots in 
spring, it was considered that pines lost all their pre- 
vious year's roots in the common course of nature. 
But there is no doubt whatever that the real cause of 
the evil arose from the common rule of renewing the 
beds in which the pines were plunged at the fall of the 
leaf, the consequence of which was a degree of bottom - 
heat which pine-roots cannot bear and live. The good 
pine-grower of the present time is not satisfied if, when 
September-potted suckers are shifted in early spring, 
their roots are not white and full of life, instead of 
black and shrivelled. 

Under ordinary circumstances I would recommend 
that the suckers now being treated of should be kept 
quiet from the middle of November till the middle of 
February, and not encouraged to grow. To rest them 
thus, a temperature of 55 is preferable to 60, unless 
during very mild weather, but 60 should never be 
exceeded. The atmosphere should be dry rather than 
otherwise ; and I have very rarely found that, when 



THE PINE-APPLE. 19 

grown on a bed of leaves and tan, during these months 
they ever require any water at the root. The tan in 
which the pots are plunged is generally moist enough 
for the maintenance of pine-roots in a healthy condi- 
tion, and the soil in the pots is regulated as to moisture 
at this season hy the state of the plunging material. 
Where the bottom -heat is supplied with hot -water 
pipes in air chambers or tanks, the plants may require 
an occasional watering ; but with the bottom-heat that 
I have named, the waterings required will be very few 
indeed. Young stock is in very little danger of fruit- 
ing prematurely from being kept rather dry, if all else 
be right ; and in all other respects it is much the best 
practice. 

When the thermometer rises to 65 a little air 
should be put on, always at the highest point of the 
pit or house. But, unless during a continuance of 
dull damp weather, the temperature should not be 
purposely raised in order to admit of giving air. In 
most pineries there is a sufficient amount of circula- 
tion going on in the atmosphere through the laps of 
the glass and other chinks to render systematic air- 
giving, with the low temperature and dry atmosphere 
that I have recommended, unnecessary. It is there- 
fore only during sunny days, when the heat is raised, 
that air-giving must be carefully attended to during 
the season of rest. 

Under ordinary circumstances this is the winter 
treatment to be recommended as that which will give 
succession plants in the most robust and healthy con- 
dition in spring, and that can be grown into the very 
best fruiting stock by the following autumn. Scarcity 
of intermediate plants may, however, in certain cases, 
render it desirable to considerably increase the size of 



2O FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

the plants in order to gain time. When such is the 
case they should be kept gently on the move all winter, 
by keeping the temperature at from 60 to 65, with a 
little more moisture at the root than has been recom- 
mended. The highest temperature named should be 
given during the brightest and calmest weather, when 
it can be secured without anything like violent firing; 
and during weather the reverse of this, the lowest is 
much the safest. This winter growth can only be 
pursued with success when the pineries are light and 
fully exposed to every ray of sunshine that can possibly 
be had. Otherwise the plants will become drawn and 
weakly, a condition which will more surely than any 
other defeat the object in view. It is only when there 
is a scarcity of good succession plants that I would 
advise these autumn suckers to be pushed on, with the 
view of resting them in April and May, in order to 
start them for supplying fruit in autumn. 

SUCCESSION PLANTS SPRING TREATMENT. 

This is the distinguishing term which is applied in 
spring to the suckers of the previous autumn, and it 
is as succession plants that I will now treat of their 
spring and summer culture. 

Except in the case of plants which may have been 
kept in a growing condition all winter, it rarely occurs 
that September - potted suckers require a shift into 
larger pots before the middle of February; more espe- 
cially if at first they are potted into 6-inch and 8 -inch 
pots as recommended. In my own practice I am, 
however, never regulated by dates, but by the condi- 
tion of the plants. Succession pine plants in a proper 
condition for shifting I would describe as those which 



THE PINE-APPLE. 21 

have moderately filled their pots with roots in a white 
and healthy state of preservation. They should not 
be shifted till roots have formed themselves round the 
ball of soil sufficient to keep it together. On the 
other hand, they should not be allowed to stand un- 
shifted till they become anything like pot-bound. If 
the former condition is not arrived at before the middle 
or end of February, the operation of shifting should be 
deferred, and the plants gently excited into action by 
increasing the night temperature to 60 when cold, 
and 65 when mild, with 10 more with sun-heat by 
day. Keep the bottom-heat at 85, and increase the 
moisture both in the soil and air, till their roots are 
in the condition I have named. Should they have 
become pot-bound, which sometimes occurs in the case 
of strong suckers, especially when in the smaller-sized 
pots, the balls should be partially broken up with the 
hand, and the roots disentangled as much as possible. 
Plants with hard matted balls seldom start freely into 
growth, and are liable to start prematurely into fruit. 
The best way is to keep a watchful eye on young stock 
and shift them the first opportunity after they are suffi- 
ciently rooted. 

About a week before the shifting is performed, the 
plants should be carefully examined, and all those that 
are dry should be watered, so that at shifting time the 
soil may be moderately moist. If shifted with their 
balls dry it is difficult to properly moisten them after- 
wards, particularly as it is not desirable to water them 
immediately after being shifted. The other prelimin- 
aries of getting the necessary amount of soil prepared 
and placed in some place to warm it, and the pots 
cleansed, crocked, and arranged in convenient readi- 
ness, should be all seen to before the day on which 



22 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

the pines are to be repotted. Hurry and confusion 
will thus be prevented in taking advantage of the first 
mild day for shifting and rearranging the succession 
stock. In draining the pots it must be borne in mind 
that the plants are to remain in them till they have 
perfected their fruit and a crop of suckers for another 
season's stock, and the drainage should be efficiently 
performed, as directed when treating of suckers, only 
the depth of crocks should be a little greater in the 
case of the pots recommended for fruiting in. 

The house or pit intended for the reception of the 
plants after they are shifted should be thoroughly 
cleansed. The glass and wood -work should be all 
washed, and the walls whitewashed with hot-lime, so 
that there may be admitted and diffused as much light 
as possible, which for a stocky and fruitful growth 
early in the season is one of the most important con- 
ditions in the cultivation of the pine-apple. In the 
case of those who are dependent on fermenting ma- 
terial for bottom-heat, all that may be necessary in 
relation to that will be to add about six or eight 
inches of fresh tan, well mixing it with a foot of the 
surface of the old bed. But should the leaves have 
been several years in the pit, and the heat much 
declined, it will then be necessary either to take out 
the tan and mix in some fresh leaves with the old, or 
to add a greater proportion of fresh tan without inter- 
fering with the leaves at all. In the latter case the 
old tan should be sifted, preserving the roughest part 
of it. There is not an operation connected with the 
growth of the pine-apple that I dread more than en- 
tirely renewing the leaves and tan in pine-pits ; and 
rather than run the risk of sudden and violent fits of 
bottom-heat, I have allowed the leaves in the bottom 



THE PINE-APPLE. 23 

of pits to remain undisturbed for six or seven years 
at a time. I have always found, where tan is easily 
got, that the safest and best way is to sift the tan 
once a-year, and mix in with the old a few inches of 
fresh tan, which raises a steady and sufficient amount 
of bottom-heat. A bed so managed is far more under 
control than when the leaves and tan are annually or 
even biennially renewed entirely. All this labour in 
preparing beds is dispensed with where the bottom-heat 
is supplied by a well-regulated system of hot water 
and the labour connected with the shifting and arrang- 
ing of pines in spring or any other season is much 
lessened and simplified. 

Supposing that I am now treating of Queens that 
are required to fruit early in the following year, to 
supply ripe fruit in May and June little more than 
eighteen months from the time they were taken as 
suckers from their parent plants I prefer shifting 
them into their fruiting-pots at once, instead of giving 
them two small shifts. Indeed, the size of pots into 
which they have been potted as suckers, and those into 
which I shift them for fruiting, admit only of one shift 
without reducing the balls. The strongest plants in 
8 -inch are shifted into pots 12 inches wide and as 
many deep, and those in 6 -inch into 11 -inch pots. 
These sizes are sufficient for the production of the very 
finest pines. Fine fruit is not dependent on size of pot 
so much as on other points of culture/ I have had 
fine crops in 9 -inch pots, but they require more atten- 
tion in watering. And what is of no small conse- 
quence, especially to those who have a regular supply 
of fruit to keep up from limited accommodation, it is 
found that pine plants grown in comparatively small 
pots are much more manageable in the way of getting 



24 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

them to start than when grown in larger pots. From 
this it will be observed that all that I recommend in 
the way of repotting pines, in their progress from the 
sucker state to their yielding and ripening their fruit, 
is simply one shift. 

Before turning the plants out of their pots, a few of 
the short sucker leaves round their collars should be 
stripped off. When turned out of their pots, all inert 
soil on the surface of the ball should be removed with 
the hand, and the crocks taken from the bottom part, 
taking care not to injure the roots. The ball should 
then have a gentle tap or two with the palm of the 
hand, and the outside roots be disentangled a little 
without breaking up the ball. This is what is recom- 
mended in the case of plants that have the soil and 
roots in a thoroughly satisfactory condition having 
fine healthy white roots, with a moderately matted ball, 
and the soil in a healthy condition. When, as may 
occur in individual plants, the soil is either over dry 
or soured with wet from having stood in a drip, it is 
best to shake out the plants either more freely than 
I have directed, or entirely, according as the condition 
named may exist to a limited or extreme extent. The 
pots should be filled firmly up with soil, so that the 
plants when placed in them may be from two to three 
inches deeper in the pot than they were before. Be- 
ing an advocate for very firm potting, I recommend 
that the soil should be rammed firmly round the ball 
with a blunt-pointed piece of wood. Be it remembered 
that the soil I have recommended to be thus acted 
upon is not a damp mixture of heavy soil and animal 
excrement, but a light turfy loam through which water 
passes freely ; and the more firmly it is put into the 
pot the less water it holds in suspension, a point of no 



THE PINE-APPLE. 25 

small importance in the growth of so succulent a plant 
as the pine. I never remember seeing really healthy 
pines or fine fruit in a rich puttied soil, holding a 
superabundance of water about the roots. The soil 
should be made thus firm all round the ball and about 
the collar of the plants up to within an inch of the 
rim of the pot. 

When the whole are shifted they should be plunged 
in their growing quarters at once. And should there 
for the time be a scarcity of room for the desired 
number, with the prospect of more room in the course 
of a few weeks by getting rid of others that are fruit- 
ing off, they may be arranged rather thicker than is 
proper for them to make their summer growth. But 
if at once they can have the necessary amount of room 
namely, two feet from plant to plant in and between 
the rows all the better ; for there is nothing more to 
be deprecated in pine-growing than overcrowding. 

Particular attention must now be paid to the bot- 
tom-heat; 85 to 90 should be aimed at. And, 
where the heat is derived from tan and leaves, should 
it exceed 90, the pots should be moved from side to 
side, so as to leave an opening round their sides. Al- 
though there may not be absolute danger of burning 
the roots while they have not reached the sides of the 
pots, yet too much bottom-heat causes an over-rapid 
growth at too early a season, which, in the absence 
of longer days and brighter sunshine, is exceedingly 
undesirable. During the month of March the atmo- 
spheric heat should range during cold dull weather 
from 60 to 65 at night. I am not particular as to 
a few degrees, but much prefer being guided by the 
outside temperature. During bright sunshiny days, 
when the pinery can be shut up in the afternoons 



26 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

with sun-heat, the temperature at 8 P.M. may be 70, 
allowing it to sink to 65 by morning. 

For a few days after being shifted keep them 
rather close, and the atmosphere moist, till they be- 
gin to lay hold of the fresh soil. Then give a little 
air daily as soon as the temperature exceeds 70; and 
with steady sunshine the amount of air may be grad- 
ually increased till 2 P.M., when it should be gradually 
diminished according to the character of the day, and 
shut up so as to run the heat up to 80 for a short 
time before dark. There should not be any attempt 
at causing a rapid growth till the days get longer and 
the light more intense. The plants will root freely 
into the fresh soil, from the increased bottom-heat 
and the healthy irritable state of the roots, without 
much perceptible top-growth for a time. 

There will not be any necessity for water at the 
root for some time not, certainly, till the early part 
or middle of April, and even then water should not 
be over liberally supplied. The experienced can tell 
by the very appearance of the plants when they re- 
quire it ; but the inexperienced should examine the soil 
occasionally and apply water when it becomes dry a 
few inches from the surface of the ball. Eain-water 
is of course the best, and it should be heated to not 
less than 80, nor more than 85. At this season it 
is much safer to err on the side of giving a moderate 
amount of water than to keep the soil too wet while 
it is yet unoccupied with roots. The perspiratory or- 
gans of the pine are not very active at any season ; and 
as the plant partakes so much of a succulent nature, a 
little extra moisture in the air is a much safer way 
of preventing injury from drought than by applying 
much water at the roots so early in the season. 



THE PINE-APPLE. 2/ 

It is often found, in the case of those who have 
next to no experience in pine - culture, that young 
pines after they are shifted are kept far too wet. I 
have taken the soil out of the pots and squeezed the 
water out of it. No more fatal course can be pur- 
sued at any stage of their growth, but particularly in 
spring when newly shifted. 

SUCCESSION PLANTS SUMMER AND AUTUMN 

TREATMENT. 

Eaise the night temperature by the end of April 
to 70 when the weather is dull, but when the 
pineries can be shut up with sun-heat the thermo- 
meter may range to 75 at 10 P.M. with advantage, 
falling to 70 towards morning. With a proportion- 
ate amount of atmospheric moisture the plants will 
now begin to grow freely. The increase of light and 
sun-heat will render a less amount of fire-heat suffi- 
cient, and, as a general rule, the state of the weather 
admits of a more liberal supply of air being given. 
This enables the cultivator to push forward his early 
plants without the danger of drawing them, which 
exists at an earlier period of the year. 

In order to keep up the temperature with as little 
fire-heat as possible, air should be given early in the 
morning, almost as soon as the sun strikes the glass, 
and increased as formerly directed, so that the shut- 
ting up may take place at an earlier hour than is 
usual. This allows of the maximum temperature 
while there is yet a strong light, and husbands the 
heat of the sun for the evening. The steaming- 
troughs should be filled up every day when the pinery 
is shut up, and at the same time the paths and walls 



28 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

damped with the syringe. Without a moist atmo- 
sphere at this season the growth will be deficient in 
broadness, texture, and that dark-green hue which 
indicates that all is going on well. I disapprove of 
heavily syringing young growing pines, and much 
prefer the moisture to be applied by evaporation. On 
the afternoons of very bright days an occasional syr- 
inging overhead through a fine rose is beneficial, and 
keeps the plants clean ; but regular heavy syring- 
ings have a tendency to keep the soil in a puddled 
state, as the leaves conduct all the water that falls 
on them into the pot, and this has a tendency to pro- 
duce a soft unfruitful growth. 

With increased air, light, and heat, and the very 
moderate syringings recommended, the state of the 
soil as to moisture must be carefully watched. An 
equal and healthy amount of moisture must be main- 
tained. No amount of attention should be considered 
too much to prevent the soil from becoming dusty- 
dry on the one hand, or over- wet on the other, other- 
wise a check may be given and an amount of mis- 
chief produced that no after-treatment can retrieve. 
It is a great mistake to suppose that a check is not 
as likely to arise from plants being kept too dry as 
from the opposite extreme. 

When bottom-heat depends on leaves and tan, it 
not unfrequently occurs, although the heat may be 
just right in March and April, that the hotter sun of 
May causes an increase of heat just at a time when 
the young roots are reaching the sides of the pot and 
are most susceptible of injury. The safest way is to 
have a thermometer in the bed, and as soon as the 
heat exceeds 90, to shake the pots from side to side 
and leave an opening all round them for the heat to 



THE PINE-APPLE. 29 

escape. After the heat subsides, the tan can be 
pressed to the sides of the pots again. Of course, 
when bottom-heat is derived from hot water, it can 
be easily regulated without these precautionary meas- 
ures, which apply only to fermenting materials. 

The temperature should now be carefully regulated, 
and fire-heat applied in the evening just in time to 
prevent the heat from sinking below 70 at 10 P.M. 
And when the morning gives signs of a bright day, 
the fires should be damped down the first thing, and 
kept low all day. There is nothing more injurious 
than to have hot pipes, and a bright sun, with a 
maximum supply of air on. Such a state of things 
creates currents of scorching dry air, very trying to 
the plants, and robs the pineries too much of moisture. 
By the middle of May the plants will be growing freely, 
and moisture and air must be increased in proportion 
to the progress they make. The house should be 
damped the first thing in the morning as well as at 
shutting-up time. And after being shut up close for 
four or five hours, when the weather is calm and very 
warm, a little " chink " of air should be left on all 
night. A little more air should be put on at *7 A.M., 
and gradually increased with the rising of the sun, till 
at twelve o'clock there is sufficient to create a circula- 
tion among the plants. Air should be given at the 
back or highest part of the house or pit ; but, unless 
when the weather is close and sultry, none should be 
given at the front. With the increase of heat, light, 
and air, they will make rapid progress, and conse- 
quently more water at the root will be required, and 
it should always be about the same temperature as 
the bottom-heat. I have found Peruvian guano the 
best and most convenient stimulant for mixing with 



30 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

the water not in strong doses now and then, but 
simply to well colour the water with it every time 
the pines are watered : an ordinary handful to four 
gallons of water is sufficient. 

In some localities, and with fine summer weather, 
after midsummer the temperature can often be kept 
up sufficiently without the aid of fire -heat. In a 
close structure there will be no difficulty in doing 
so, especially when early air-giving and shutting up 
is practised. The heat can thus be husbanded so 
as to keep the thermometer at 75; and when this 
can be accomplished without the aid of fire-heat, so 
much the better in all respects. This is, I am aware, 
not applicable either to all localities or all seasons ; 
for many climates, even in favourable summers, will 
render the use of the fires necessary the whole season. 

Although very much opposed to shading pines in 
a general way, it is sometimes necessary, when they 
are growing rapidly and the weather becomes suddenly 
very bright after a continuance of dull weather. The 
shading should never be heavy nor long continued. 
Tiffany or hexagon netting I have always found suf- 
ficient, and that only during the brightest part of the 
day. If all is going on right at the roots, and a moist 
atmosphere is steadily kept up, I have never found a 
necessity for more shading than this. At the same 
time, it is most undesirable that pines should become 
browned and wiry; and slight shade and more fre- 
quent gentle dewing at shutting-up time should be 
resorted to as soon as signs of this appear. Of two 
evils, the browning of the leaves is not so injurious as 
a weak watery growth the result of too much shade 
and a close atmosphere. I find the Smooth-leaved 
Cayenne much more impatient of sudden bursts of 



THE PINE-APPLE. 31 

bright sun than Queens or other varieties ; and to 
grow it to perfection it should never be allowed to 
become much browned. In the case of this fine 
variety I have in bright warm seasons fixed a single 
ply of hexagon netting over the pits, and allowed it 
to remain for a couple of the hottest months. This 
simply breaks the power of the sun a little. In order 
to prevent this wiry, browned condition during sum- 
mer, care should be taken that the plants are never 
once allowed to go too long without being watered, 
and a uniformly moderate moist state of the soil must 
be maintained. 

Should any of the plants throw up young suckers 
from the axils of the lower leaves, they should be 
removed at once. The best way of doing this is to 
have a long-handled pair of broad-mouthed pincers, 
with which the suckers can be easily twisted out as 
soon as they are observed. Where much syringing 
overhead is practised, suckers frequently show them- 
selves in abundance, in the case of Queens particularly. 
This is one of the many evils which result from the 
too liberal use of the syringe. It often occurs during 
the season of rapid growth that some of the centre 
leaves adhere closely to each other for a longer time 
than is good for them : they should be separated 
either with the hand, or with a slight touch of a stick 
where the hand cannot reach them. 

As the stock of which I am now treating consists 
principally of plants that are selected to start into 
fruit for the early supply of next season, the plants 
should always have their pots well filled with roots, 
and be of a stocky well-matured growth, by the end 
of August, otherwise there is little certainty of their 
being got to start in time to be ripe in May and June. 



32 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

If grown on the shady, large-pot, and wet-at-the-root 
system, they will not be in a fit state for the purpose 
now named ; and even with the best of management 
to induce them to start without first making a growth 
in January and February, it is necessary that they 
should complete their growth early under the influence 
of plenty of light and air, or they will make a fresh 
growth when the temperature is raised with the object 
of starting them, instead of coming up at once into 
fruit. True, those which make a growth first, I have 
always found, throw the finest fruit; but where an 
early summer supply of fruit is required, it must be 
had from those which start without any growth. In 
properly preparing plants for this purpose, there are 
two things which must be guarded against. The one 
is that of having the plants pot-bound too early, and 
subjected to a high temperature too long in autumn. 
In this case the fruit comes up slowly late in autumn, 
or in winter, a hardened knot like a thimble, and is 
worthless, especially in the case of Queens. The other 
is a watery immature growth, from which it is im- 
possible to get early fruit. 

In September water must be judiciously and very 
sparingly applied. No more should be given than is 
just sufficient to prevent the plants from suffering 
either from aridity of atmosphere or dryness of soil. 
Give a liberal supply of air on fine days. Towards 
the end of September they should be as completely at 
rest as a comparatively low temperature, a dry atmo- 
sphere, and a proportionately dry state of the soil in 
which they grow, can place them. I have frequently 
allowed Queens in this stage to remain without a drop 
of water at the root from the first week in October till 
January, and found the plants so treated in the very 



THE PINE- APPLE. 33 

best condition. To start pines into fruit at any given 
time, and more especially very early in the year, it 
is necessary to their doing so satisfactorily, that they 
have a period of rest previous to their being subjected 
to the treatment required to start them. Such as 
have completed their growth as I have described early 
in the season, can have from ten to twelve weeks' rest, 
and be started in time to ripen their fruit in the end 
of May and June. From the beginning or middle of 
October, onwards to the end of December, it rarely 
occurs that pines intended to start thus early are the 
better for a drop of water, when grown on a bed of 
fermenting material. And when the bottom-heat is 
supplied with pipes, it is much the safer way to keep 
the plunging material moderately moist than to water 
the pines often. 

The night temperature should drop gradually to 60 
by the middle of October. In November, and until 
the time they are to be started, I prefer the tempera- 
ture at 55 at night during cold windy weather, and 
60 when mild. The bottom-heat should be propor- 
tionately low, just enough to maintain the roots in a 
white healthy condition, and 80 is quite enough for 
that. When with sun-heat during the day, which 
may occur during clear frosty weather, the tempera- 
ture exceeds 65, air should be given. With such 
weather as this it is sometimes necessary to fire sharply 
at night to keep up the required temperature ; in which 
case the fires should be checked the first thing in the 
morning, especially when a cold night is succeeded by 
a bright day. Where it can be so arranged that 
covering can be used over the glass during cold 
weather, it prevents radiation, and the atmosphere 

c 



34 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

can be kept in a condition much more congenial to 
pines than when more fire-heat is necessary. For 
although a damp atmosphere, which leads to an 
accumulation of moisture and to drip, is by all 
means to be avoided at this season, yet a parch- 
ingly dry atmosphere produced by highly - heated 
pipes is very prejudicial, and cannot well be counter- 
acted in winter without producing the opposite evil. 
Hence the benefit of covering the glass at night. 
When, however, it becomes necessary to apply mois- 
ture to counteract the too drying effects of hard firing, 
the best way is to sprinkle the paths instead of the 
pipes, because the moisture will be carried more 
gradually into the atmosphere, and is therefore not 
so likely to accumulate and drop into the centres of 
the plants, which, as all pine-growers have doubtless 
found out, is attended with spotted leaves, and not 
unfrequently deformed fruit. 

Winter treatment the reverse of what I have here 
recommended a high temperature and more water at 
the root and in the air causes the plants to grow all 
winter ; and from want of light and air they become 
drawn and weakly in fact, worthless, or probably 
some of them may start at the dead of winter, when, 
particularly in the case of Queens, there is very little 
chance of their blooming and setting properly, and will 
either way be worthless. An instance of such treat- 
ment once came under my notice, when, instead of a 
low temperature, V5 of heat was kept up during the 
whole resting season, with moisture in abundance. 
The consequence was, that when the time for starting 
them came round they were tall, tender, and only fit 
for the waste-heap. 

Pine plants arrived at the stage I have been now 



THE PINE- APPLE. 35 

treating of are termed fruiting plants, and under that 
heading I will speak of their further treatment. 

FRUITING PLANTS. 

Eipe pines being required in the early part of June, 
it will be necessary to set a quantity of Queens in 
motion by the first of January, to succeed those which 
are generally termed winter and spring fruiters, and 
which will be treated of by-and-by. Queens are by 
far the best variety to start at this season, with the 
view of getting ripe fruit from them quickly to keep 
up the succession after the winter fruiting varieties. 
Yet for the sake of variety, and also to keep up as 
long a succession as possible from the same lot of 
plants, it is desirable to start a few of the later 
varieties at the same time; but Queens should form 
the great majority. 

Where bottom-heat is derived from leaves and tan, 
the bed in the fruiting pinery should have fresh 
material added to it, as formerly directed, to increase 
the heat to from 85 to 90; but in doing this, very 
particular attention must be paid to the state of the 
bed, as over-much bottom-heat at this stage would 
prove fatal to anything like success. The principal 
part of the roots being at the bottom and round the 
sides of the pots, they are now more than ever par- 
ticularly liable to suffer from too much heat, and 
great caution is necessary. Should there be any fear 
about the over-heating of the bed after it is pre- 
pared, it will be much safer to only half plunge the 
pots at first, till it be certain that the heat will not 
exceed 90. 

Those who have the more desirable and superior 



36 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

appliance of hot-water pipes or tanks for bottom-heat, 
will be spared the trouble and anxiety which is at- 
tached to the otherwise by no means inefficient, when 
well managed, fermenting bed. They can regulate the 
bottom-heat with much more ease and safety. 

In selecting the plants for starting at this early 
season, those only should be taken which are most 
likely to start without making a growth. I will 
therefore suppose that the cultivator has a hundred 
plants of those treated of as " succession plants," and 
that from these it is desired to have a supply of ripe 
fruit from the first of June till October, and recom- 
mend that fifty of those most likely to start at once 
should be selected. In doing so the experienced eye 
will fix upon those with the thickest collars, and that 
have the greatest number of short sharp-pointed leaves, 
thickly set together in their centres. These are the 
most likely to send up their fruit without making a 
fresh growth, although some of them may disappoint 
even the most experienced ; still, in a general way, 
when prepared the previous autumn and winter as I 
have described, they will not disappoint. 

In arranging and plunging these plants, a few of 
the bottom leaves should be stripped off, all the loose 
soil on the surface removed, and a top-dressing of loam 
put on, pressing it firmly to the collars of the plant 
and the sides of the pot. In moving these plants it 
is a common practice to tie the leaves up for the sake 
of convenience ; but I would here say that it is a 
practice that is injurious at any stage of the pine's 
growth, and particularly when the plants are full 
grown, and should have stubby, short, thick leaves 
that will not bear being squeezed into a bundle 
without considerable injury. I seldom tie pines up 



THE PINE-APPLE. 37 

at any stage when working amongst them. Those 
who shift and plunge the strong prickly varieties can 
easily protect their hands from being torn by wearing 
a pair of gloves. In plunging them they should not 
be put thicker than two feet from centre to centre, and 
that side of the plant which has been to the sun all 
the growing season should be placed so still. Indeed, 
very strong plants require more room. 

As soon as they are all plunged, if they are dry, 
water them with guano -water at 80, giving them 
sufficient to moisten the whole ball, but be careful 
not to splash it about the leaves. The atmospheric 
temperature for January should be 65 at night, and 
70 by day without sun; with sun, 80 will be suffi- 
cient, and air should be given when it exceeds that. 
The moisture in the air must also be proportionately 
increased, and should be done by sprinkling the paths 
and walls with tepid water two or three times a-day, 
instead of steaming the pipes for the present. A 
watchful eye must be kept on the state of the soil, 
and no more water given than is sufficient to keep it 
moist, but not wet. With too much water, and the 
degree of top and bottom heat now necessary, the 
tendency of pines to make growth at this season and 
rniss starting for the time being is increased. With 
these conditions the plants having a mass of healthy 
roots in an irritable state will soon show signs of 
motion, and all the more surely in proportion as the 
heat and moisture are steadily administered. 

In February the heat must be advanced to 70 at 
night, and 75 by day, and air put on when it exceeds 
80 with sun, shutting up the house early in the 
afternoon so as to husband sun-heat. The moisture 
in the air must not be much more than in January, 



38 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

and the , same cautious application of water to the 
roots must be observed till the fruit makes its ap- 
pearance. Most of the plants will show fruit before 
the last week of February. The centres of the plants 
will be observed to open by degrees, and on examining 
them the young fruit will be found emerging from 
the centre. Whenever this is observed, the plants, 
if inclining to the dry side, should have a watering 
sufficient to thoroughly moisten the whole ball, and 
the bottom -heat already named should be steadily 
kept up. 

Supposing all the plants to have shown fruit, the 
night temperature for March should not range under 
70 nor over 75 with the mildest weather. There 
being generally great fluctuations of weather during 
this month, the temperatures I have named should be 
aimed at accordingly. The moisture in the air must 
be sparingly applied till the fruit is out of flower, 
and air admitted on all fine days, putting it on early 
in the morning, and shutting it off early in the after- 
noon. Water at the root will be more frequently 
required, especially when they are plunged over a 
hot-air chamber. But avoid, as one of the greatest 
possible evils, a wet sloppy state of the soil. As 
soon as they are out of flower, sprinkle them over- 
head every fine afternoon with clear water at a tem- 
perature of 80. As the season advances, with longer 
days and shorter nights, early shutting up with sun- 
heat must be practised ; but, except with sun - heat, 
I do not recommend in April any increase of night 
temperature over that recommended for March, even 
though it be required to ripen the fruit with as much 
speed as possible. The forcing should be accelerated 
by day with sun -heat. Shut up soon after three 



THE PINE-APPLE. 39 

o'clock, giving them a gentle dewing overhead, filling 
up the steaming-trays, sprinkling the surface of the 
plunging material and about the collars or bottom 
leaves of the plants. The temperature may then be 
run up to from 85 to 90 for an hour or two. The 
fires, which should now be low through the day, 
should be quickened in time to keep the heat from 
falling below the proper night temperature at 10 P.M. 

Under this treatment the fruit will swell rapidly, 
and careful attention must be paid to watering. The 
great thing to be aimed at being to keep the soil in a 
healthy growth-giving state moist, but not wet it 
is a common practice to give occasional strong water- 
ings with guano, sheep, or deers' dung. Instead of 
this, I prefer, as already directed for succession plants, 
to water every time with a weaker solution of these 
manures, and I prefer guano to any other ; and during 
the rapid growing season, I always put a little of it 
into the evaporating pans once or twice a- week, and 
find it gives that fine dark-green hue and thickness 
of texture so desirable to see in pines. They should 
be gone over as soon as the suckers appear, and where 
there are more than two to a plant remove them. 
When suckers or gills appear on the stems or under 
the base of the fruit, they should be removed im- 
mediately they are discovered. 

The month of May generally brings comparatively 
warm sunny weather, and vegetation gets into full 
play; and I am not sure but what May is the very, 
best month in the whole year for swelling off pines. 
It is not generally so hot and scorching as the suc- 
ceeding three months ; less air is therefore needed. 
The pineries can be shut up earlier, so that less eva- 
poration goes on, and the swelling fruit can have a 



40 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

longer period of sun-heat and moisture in the after- 
noon than when the sun is more powerful, and when 
it is not safe to damp and shut up before four o'clock. 
Advantage should therefore be taken of these circum- 
stances, and the fruit pushed on, when it is an object 
to get them ripe as soon as possible. Under these 
circumstances, the heat may be run up to from 90 
to 100 for an hour or two, and the air loaded with 
moisture. Syringing must not, however, be to excess, 
or the result will be large crowns and an undue 
growth of suckers, to the detriment of the size and 
appearance of the fruit. 

When the fruit begins to change colour, which, if 
the plants have been set agoing in January, will be 
in the end of May or early in June, it is necessary, 
in order to get highly-flavoured fruit, to increase the 
amount of air, and decrease the moisture both in the 
air and the soil. Indeed, as soon as the fruit is half 
coloured, no more water should be given than is 
necessary to keep the plants from suffering, and the 
moisture of the atmosphere should be gradually with- 
drawn. At the same time, avoid starving them into 
maturity. 

RETAEDING AND KEEPING PINE-APPLES AFTER 
THEY ARE RIPE. 

When a greater number of pines begin to ripen at 
any given time than is necessary to supply the de- 
mand, it then becomes desirable that a portion of 
them should be retarded to form a succession of fruit 
in good condition. In the absence of a compartment 
specially for the purpose, I have frequently placed 
them in a vinery where grapes were nearly ripe, and 



THE PINE-APPLE, 4! 

where the temperature was comparatively cool, with 
a circulation of dry air. In such a place, pines that 
have begun to colour ripen slowly, and they are ex- 
cellent in flavour. The cool dry air of the vinery, 
and the shade of the vines, are good retarding condi- 
tions ; and this is as good a way, apart from having 
a place for the purpose, as any that I have tried. I 
have also removed them to a cool dry room when 
about half coloured, and kept them there a month or 
six weeks, and found them in excellent condition. 
This treatment, of course, applies to summer fruit. 
Later in the season I have kept Smooth-leaved Cay- 
ennes in a room for six weeks after they were quite 
ripe. In this way a succession of fruit can be very 
much extended as compared to keeping them in a 
warm pinery. 

When the fruit is all cut from a pit or houseful of 
plants, the suckers should be carefully attended to. 
The comparatively dry condition of the air and soil 
which is necessary to good flavour is not favourable 
to the suckers at this hot season of the year ; conse- 
quently, when the suckers are strong, I frequently 
detach them from the plant as soon as the fruit 
begins to colour. If the suckers are small when the 
fruit is cut, they should be left on the parent plant ; 
then the soil should have a good watering to encour- 
age them to make further growth. It rarely occurs 
that they are not quite large enough to be potted 
about the time the fruit begins to ripen. I may here 
remark, that the practice of allowing the suckers to 
lie in a cool dry place, with the object of what is 
called drying them, is one for which I never could 
see any reason, or any good end that could be gained 
by it. On the contrary, in my opinion, the practice 



42 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

is injurious to the progress of the young plants. To 
say the least of it, it is attended with a loss of time. 
. When it is desirable to have the fruiting plants of 
which I am now treating to ripen earlier than the 
beginning of June, they must, of course, have heat 
applied to them in December instead of January ; 
and with properly constructed and heated pineries 
there is nothing to prevent this. But where the 
houses are not light, tight, and well heated, it is a 
matter of no small difficulty, and it is much safer to 
wait for the " turn of the day." The other half of 
the set of fruiting plants of which I have been treat- 
ing should be kept quiet till the end of February. 
Introduced into heat, and managed in the same way 
as the early half, they will come in as a succession 
lot. And, as is always likely, a good many of them 
which the experienced eye rejected while selecting the 
earliest, make a growth before starting, and in that 
way still further lengthen out the succession of ripe 
fruit from this portion of the stock. For this purpose 
Queens are most useful in all respects, and can be 
had in good order from May till November. 

I have considered it the best way to follow out the 
treatment of this one set of plants, without mixing up 
with their management that of different sets of plants 
necessary to supply ripe fruit in winter and spring. 
Of these latter I will now speak. 

HOW TO KEEP UP A CONSTANT SUCCESSION OF EIPE 
FRUIT ALL THE YEAR. 

Where a regular supply of fruit has to be kept up 
with the least possible intermission all the year round, 
it is more certainly accomplished by potting a quan- 



THE PINE-APPLE. 43 

tity of suckers at frequent intervals. Supposing that 
a number of suckers are potted August 1880, these 
will give the earliest fruit for 1881. And those that 
ripen in September and October, give the suckers that 
will succeed the earliest lot, so that these two sets 
supply fruit for six months of the twelve. The other 
six months of winter and spring particularly spring 
are those in which pines are most valued, as other 
fruits are then scarce. March and April are the 
most difficult months of the whole year in which to 
have ripe pines. 

In June and July I always endeavour to start a 
quantity of the Smooth-leaved Cayenne and Charlotte 
Eothschild. These are noble pines when well grown, 
being unsurpassed for appearance and long keeping 
after they are ripe, and swell better after October than 
any other pines I know. Smooth Cayenne I consider 
the better of the two. The Black Jamaica is also a most 
useful pine for winter swelling, and probably is unsur- 
passed for flavour at the dullest season of the year. The 
Queen is comparatively worthless as a winter pine com- 
pared to these two ; it does not swell kindly, and is 
always dry and juiceless compared to them. 

There should be two sets of these winter sorts, as 
recommended in the case of Queens and other early 
sorts for summer and autumn fruit. The Smooth- 
leaved Cayenne is s? very shy in making suckers that 
I always endeavour to save as many crowns as I can, 
and take all the suckers that can be got in October 
from the fruiting plants, whether the fruit be ripe or 
not. These suckers and crowns are potted generally 
into 6 -inch pots, and shifted in spring as soon as suf- 
ficiently rooted, as described in the former part of this 
treatise. They are shifted into 11 -inch pots, and grown 



44 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

on in the usual way, only that they are not kept so dry 
in autumn and winter as is desirable for early starting 
plants. The temperature, too, is kept five degrees higher 
than for Queens at rest ; the object being not to mature 
the growth of these so as to predispose them to start in 
spring. The heat is quickened, both top and bottom, in 
February, and they make a spring growth ; are rested 
in May and June by being kept drier and cooler ; and 
then, with increased heat and moisture, I rarely ever 
fail in starting them all in June and July. Care must 
be taken that they never get too dry at the root, par- 
ticularly in spring, as that would be likely to start them 
before they are required. This applies with the same 
force to Jamaicas and Charlotte Eothschilds. These 
will keep up the supply of fruit till the end of the year. 

It is necessary to have a later lot of these varieties 
to come in for spring, and this I find rather difficult in 
the case of the Smooth Cayenne. It makes suckers still 
more tardily from late plants. The method I generally 
adopt is to save the old stems of those that ripen their 
fruit through the winter, and place them in strong bot- 
tom-heat to spring the latent buds. These grow into 
nice plants, ready to shift into 8 -inch pots in Septem- 
ber, and I shift these into their fruiting-pots in March, 
and by pushing them on they start in September and 
October, and succeed those started in June and July. 
For this purpose I most decidedly give the preference 
to the Cayenne ; and from plants of it so managed, I 
have had very fine fruit in the spring months. They 
are kept on at a temperature of from 60 to 65 all win- 
ter, with a steady bottom-heat of 8 5. I have frequently 
had ripe fruit from 4 to 6 Ib. in 9 -inch pots from last 
year's suckers. 

There is nothing peculiar in the management of these 



THE PINE-APPLE. 45 

winter fruiting sorts, except it be that I never keep them 
so dry and so completely at rest in winter as those in- 
tended to start early. This is with the view of their 
not resting and maturing themselves so thoroughly in 
autumn and winter as would cause them to start when 
excited in spring. The Smooth Cayenne requires more 
moisture at the root when growing than is good for 
most other sorts. It is also more impatient of bright 
sun early in the season than any I know, more especi- 
ally if kept gently on the move all winter. And rather 
than allow the foliage to become bronzed, shade should 
be applied for a time, as already directed. When 
swelling off in winter, water at the root will of course 
not require to be so frequently given as in summer, 
and there should be no syringing. The evaporating 
trays will keep the air sufficiently moist. Air must 
be put on for a short time in the middle of every fine 
day. 

PLANTS THAT MISS FEU1TING, 

It not unfrequently occurs that a few plants miss 
starting into fruit along with the others, but continue 
to grow, in spite of every effort to make them fruit. 
The common practice is to throw these away. When 
I have room to conveniently operate on these, I cut the 
plants over at the surface of the soil, and strip a few 
of the leaves off them, and pot them deeply and very 
firmly in fruiting-pots. They are slightly shaded for 
ten days,- by which time, with a brisk bottom-heat, 
they begin to send out wonderfully strong roots, and 
then the shading is discontinued, and they are watered. 
In this way they are transformed into dwarf strong 
plants, and I always find that they start into fruit very 
soon after, and swell off fine fruit. When I have found 



46 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

a set of pines that have been drawn and are not likely 
to be got to fruit satisfactorily, I have treated them in 
this way instead of throwing them away, as is often done 
in such circumstances. 



THE PLANTING-OUT SYSTEM. 

Although I have given a good deal of attention to 
the planting-out system of pine-culture, and made my- 
self acquainted with the most successful instances of 
its adoption, I have very seldom adopted it. Not that 
I suppose fine fruit are not produced by it : facts prove 
the contrary. But with the space at my command I 
have decided that, to keep up the supply which I have 
produced nearly every week in the year, I could more 
certainly do so on the pot system than by having the 
plants planted out in beds. Plants in pots are entirely 
under control at all times, for being moved or removed 
to force forward or retard the ripening of fruit as cir- 
cumstances demand. This is of vast importance where 
the space in pine-beds is small in proportion to the de- 
mand for fruit, and in this respect pines in pots give 
an advantage over the open bed. Neither do I con- 
sider it necessary to have finer fruit than can be pro- 
duced from 9, 11, and 12 inch pots. In fact, it is not 
the size of pot, nor the greater range that the planting- 
out system gives to the roots, that are the principal 
points of good pine-culture. 

The planting -out system may be practised either 
over a bed of leaves or with hot water for bottom-heat. 
The best example of this system that I have ever seen 
was at the Eoyal Gardens, Frogmore ; and there, a 
bed of leaves for bottom-heat is preferred to hot-water 
pipes. The suckers are not potted, but planted at once 



THE PINE-APPLE. 4? 

into beds of soil over a bed of leaves about two or three 
feet deep. From the sucker pits they are transplanted 
into the succession pits, and from the latter into the 
fruiting pits, where they are planted two feet apart in 
the rows. In other respects the treatment is the same 
as for plants in pots. 

Others again, where the bottom-heat is derived from 
hot water, do not have recourse to regular transplant- 
ing, but either move the stools as the fruit are cut, and 
put in a little fresh soil and another plant ; or they 
adopt the " Hamiltonian system " of leaving a sucker, 
and sometimes two, merely cutting down the old plant 
to the sucker and putting some fresh soil round it. The 
system can of course be modified as circumstances will 
allow ; but from all that I have seen of it, it is my 
opinion that as fine fruit are produced in pots ; and 
for rapid and certain fruiting, and where the most is 
to be made of space in keeping up a supply, the pot 
system is the best. At all events, any one who makes 
himself master of pine-apple culture in pots can have 
no difficulty in growing them in open beds of soil. 
The same points mu.3t be aimed at in both systems. 
And for beginners, any errors or mistakes in manage- 
ment can be more easily retrieved, I should say, in 
the pot than in the planting-out system. 

INSECTS TO WHICH THE PINE IS SUBJECT. 

White Scale. This is the most destructive and 
formidable insect which the pine-grower has to dread ; 
and in forming a collection of pines, every possible 
precaution should be taken to avoid getting plants in- 
fested with white scale. A very few of it will soon 
overrun a whole collection, and cause a great deal of 



48 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

trouble and expense in getting rid of it. It is an oval- 
shaped insect, grey, speckled with brown, and adheres 
closely to the surface of the leaves, and preys upon the 
juices of the plants, rendering them very unsightly, and 
weakening them with great rapidity. It increases with 
amazing rapidity, and yields only to the most severe 
and laborious treatment. I have known collections 
which have soon been rendered all but useless through 
the introduction of a single plant with a breed of this 
scale in it. 

I am glad to say that I have been fortunate hitherto 
to escape having anything to do with it, and have so 
far the want of experience in destroying it. Many 
are the remedies which have been recommended for 
its destruction ; while some have looked upon it with 
despair, and have got rid of it only by getting a clean 
stock of plants, after having destroyed the infected 
ones, and thoroughly cleansed their pineries. 

Brown Scale. This insect sometimes affects pines, 
but it is not nearly so difficult to deal with as the 
white scale. I know from experience that syringing 
with clean water, heated to 140, completely kills it 
without injuring the plants. 

Mealy Bug. This is also a most formidable insect 
to get rid of when it is established on pine plants. 
The white dusty material with which it surrounds 
itself completely protects it from the influence of hot 
water applied through the syringe, and it is second in 
its destructive effects and difficulty of being eradicated 
only to the white scale itself. If allowed to go on, it 
affects every part of the plant the fruit, leaves, and 
roots. Consequently, the first appearance of it should 
be dealt with as a serious evil, to be checked and 
eradicated at once. 



THE PINE-APPLE. 49 

The most effectual remedy for all these insects is 
to mix four wine-glassfuls of paraffin -oil with four 
gallons of water, keep the whole well mixed, and 
apply it to the plants with a common garden syringe. 
Allow each plant to stand a few minutes, and then 
syringe freely with clean water. This destroys the 
insects without injuring the plants. 



D 



THE GEAPE VINE. 



WITH two exceptions the grape vine (Vitis vinifera) 
is the earliest fruit-bearing plant of which there is any 
record. From earliest ages it has occupied a prominent 
and very important position amongst the fruits of the 
earth. There is strong presumptive evidence that it 
was cultivated by the antediluvians ; and it is specially 
referred to as having occupied the attention of Noah as 
soon as the waters of the flood had subsided from the 
face of the earth. When Moses sent the heads of the 
children of Israel to spy the land of Canaan, and to 
bring back word whether it was " fat or lean," they 
brought back an example of the grape to prove that it 
was worthy of their promised possession. Through the 
long ages that have elapsed since then, with their ever- 
varying tastes and habits, the luscious grape has been 
an important product of cultivation ; and it has lost 
none of its early popularity. At the present time it 
is more extensively cultivated under glass than ever 
it was at any period of the world's history ; and in 
this country hothouse grapes are now an article of 
commerce to a much greater extent than ever they were, 
with every likelihood of their becoming increasingly 



THE GRAPE VINE. 1 

important. It is much to be regretted that a destruc- 
tive parasite (Phylloxera vastatrix) has become a formid- 
able destroyer of the vine, both in the vineyards of the 
Continent and in the vineries of Britain. The French 
Government has offered a premium of 12,000 to any 
one who will provide a remedy that will destroy the 
insect without injuring the vine. I wrote to the 
French Minister of Agriculture, expressing my con- 
viction that no such remedy was likely to be dis- 
covered, and recommending that the affected vines 
should be simultaneously destroyed and the ground 
cropped with cereals for a year or two. Up to this 
date no remedy has been discovered, and the ravages 
of the insect are increasing to an alarming extent. 

It must be regarded as somewhat strange that the 
native country of the grape vine has not been definitely 
settled by botanists. It can be safely assumed that it 
is indigenous to a great part of Asia, the climate of 
which is suited to its growth. From Asia it was no 
doubt introduced into Egypt and Greece, and from these 
parts found its way into France, Spain, and other Con- 
tinental countries, where it has so long held a position 
of much importance. It is supposed that its cultivation 
in France dates as far back as the second century. Its 
introduction into Britain has been attributed to the 
PhcBnicians, as early as the days of Solomon, when 
trading for tin to the southern coast of England ; others 
ascribe its entrance into this country to a short time 
after the Christian era, when the Eomans had full 
possession of the country. 

There is no doubt that it was at one time cultivated 
in the south of England for wine-making with very 
considerable success. It is authentically recorded that 
at Arundel Castle, in Norfolk, great quantities of wine 



52 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

were made from the produce of a vineyard there, and 
that in 1*763 there were 70 pipes of wine in the castle 
cellars, all produced from grapes grown in the Arundel 
vineyard. The first mention of artificial heat being 
applied to the vine is in 1718, when the Duke of Eut- 
land, at Belvoir Castle, forced it by means of heated 
walls. In Switzer's 'Practical Fruit-grower' there is 
to be found the first plan of a vinery, with directions 
for forcing grapes under glass. As a branch of horti- 
culture, grape-growing under glass has certainly more 
than kept pace with any other, both in its general 
diffusion and its improvement, until it may be looked 
upon as of national importance. 

SITE FOR VINERIES. 

There are two extremes of circumstances which are 
inimical to the most successful culture of the grape 
vine, and these are considerably dependent on the site 
where vineries are erected. A low damp position, 
into which the water in its immediate vicinity finds 
its way, and from which it cannot be drained to the 
depth of at least 3 feet, should be avoided ; for stag- 
nant water is ruinous to vines, and such a site may 
be regarded as the very worst. An elevated, exces- 
sively dry site, with a gravelly subsoil which suffers 
very soon and severely from drought, should also be 
avoided if possible, as excessive drought is also very 
unfavourable to the production of fine grapes. A site 
sloping gently to the south, from which water can 
be effectually drained, is the best, and should always 
be chosen when available. Shelter from north and 
east winds is also of importance. But the sheltering 
objects should never be so near the vinery as to prove 



THE GRAPE VINE. 53 

injurious by their shade. When vine -borders have 
from necessity to be made near large growing trees, 
an effectual barrier such as a brick and cement wall 
should be provided against the inroads of the tree- 
roots. 

VINERY FOR EARLY FORCING. 

What I intend to be understood by the term " early 
forcing," is that which produces ripe grapes in April 
end May, and which necessitates the commencement 
of forcing in November and December respectively. 
The forcing thus extends over a period during which 
the days are short, sunless, and cold conditions 
which, it need scarcely be said, are adverse to vege- 
tation of every kind. Even the most ignorant of the 
art of forcing through such a season will at once 
conclude that the production of good grapes in early 
spring, in this ever-changing climate, must be one of 
the most difficult tasks of the horticulturist. What- 
ever structure it is that insures the greatest possible 
amount of light, and is at the same time the most 
easily heated to and maintained at the necessary 
temperature, must of necessity be the best for early 
forcing. Very little consideration will serve to con- 
vince any one that the form of vinery which presents 
almost its entire surface of glass to the south, so as 
to catch every gleam of sunshine, must be the best. 

The " lean-to " as represented by fig. 6 is beyond 
all doubt the best for early forcing. Indeed it is a 
good form for producing grapes at any season of the 
year, but especially at the time now under considera- 
tion. The wood-work should not be any heavier than 
gives sufficient strength, and it should be glazed in 
large panes with 2 2 -ounce British sheet-glass. The 



54 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 




THE GRAPE VINE. 5$ 

amount of pipes for heating it should not be less than 
six rows of 4-inch pipes the whole length of the house 
and round both ends, besides a steaming-tray. The 
whole of the inside wood-work and back wall should 
be white, so as to reflect as much light as possible 
on the tender growths of the vine. Eeference to the 
engraving shows the arrangement of the drainage and 
depth of soil as referred to under the head of " Border- 
making." 

In forcing that has to commence in any of the 
winter months, there can be no doubt that artificial 
heat judiciously applied by hot- water pipes to the soil 
from beneath is a great advantage. In arranging for 
this the pipes should be immediately over the concrete, 
and covered over in a shallow chamber by pavement, 
and the drainage placed over the pavement ; or the 
pipes may be surrounded with an open or honey- 
combed brickwork drain, which drain can be con- 
nected with similar open drains running right and 
left among the open rubble, of which the drainage is 
composed. A border 24 feet wide should have four 
rows of hot- water pipes running underneath it. 

The ventilation, especially of vineries where early 
forcing is carried on, is of very great importance ; for 
it is, especially in these days of large panes of glass 
and close laps, highly desirable to keep the air 
fresh, and constantly renewed. The ingress of cold 
currents of air is most objectionable ; it is therefore 
necessary to heat it before it enters the body of the 
vinery and plays on the tender foliage and fruit. 
Many ways have been recommended to effect this end ; 
but the best way is that invented by William Thom- 
son, and illustrated by him in his ' Treatise on the 
Vine.' It is termed the " hot-air ventilator," and con- 



56 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

sists of a sheath of " copper placed over or incasing a 
row of the front pipes. The diameter of the sheath is 
one inch more than the hot pipe it encloses, conse- 
quently there is an open space of half an inch all 
round the pipe inside the sheath. This cavity is fed 
with fresh air from the exterior of the house, by a 
pipe 5 inches in diameter, which springs from the 
lower surface of -the sheath and passes through the 
front wall of the house to the external air. There is 
a valve in this feed-pipe to modify the supply of fresh 
air at pleasure. In the upper surface of the sheath 
is a double row of holes, so that the moment the cold 
air comes into the chamber round the pipe and gets 
hot, expanded, and lighter, it makes its exit through 
these holes into the general atmosphere of the house." 

VINERY FOR LATE GRAPES. 

Having shown that a lean-to vinery facing due south 
is the best form for early forcing, under this head I 
have no hesitation in saying that for the same reasons 
that I have recommended the lean-to for winter forc- 
ing, when the sun is only a short time above the hori- 
zon, the span-roofed vinery running north and south is 
best for the ripening of grapes, say after the middle of 
July, excepting Muscat of Alexandria, which, north of 
York at any rate, should be in lean-to vineries. A span- 
roofed house in this position gets the benefit of sunshine 
longer in summer than does the lean-to. The east side 
gets the morning sun, at noon the whole roof is exposed 
to it, and on till late in the evening the west side is 
exposed to the sun, when it would merely be shining 
on the end of a lean-to. Besides this, a span-roofed 
house, from 20 to 24 feet wide, encloses a larger vol- 



THE GRAPE VINE. 57 

ume of air than a lean-to of the same width, and this 
is of much importance in vine- culture. In large airy 
houses grapes are better flavoured, are more fleshy, and 
consequently hang better through the winter. After 
considerable experience in grape -growing in lean-to 
houses, ranging from 6 feet wide to what may be 
termed large airy vineries, I unhesitatingly recommend 
that they be built large and roomy. Besides the reasons 
already named, large vineries can be fired to a given 
temperature more steadily than small ones, because a 
large volume of air is not so easily influenced by exter- 
nal variations of temperature, just the same as a thin 
wedge of iron is sooner heated and sooner cooled than 
a thick one. Fig. 7 represents a span-roofed vinery 
of the dimensions I recommend for ripening grapes 
late in summer and autumn to hang through the winter. 
It will be observed that a drain runs in the draining 
material from the front to the back of the border in fig. 
6, terminating in an upright shaft just below the hot- 
water pipes at the back of the vinery and at the front 
of the outside border, thus communicating with the 
external atmosphere and that of the vinery. 

These drains should be constructed 6 feet apart the 
whole length of the border, and be open jointed, so that 
the air from them can find its way right and left among 
the open rubble, which should form the lower stratum 
of the drainage. This is for the purpose of what has 
been termed aeration, which means the exposure of the 
soil to the air from under-currents. No doubt, for 
summer forcing, it is beneficial, especially in wet cli- 
mates, to open the mouths of the upright shafts in hot 
sunny weather, thus admitting warm air underneath 
the border. 

It is a very common error to fix the wires to which 



FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 




THE GRAPE VINE. 59 

the vines are tied too near the glass ; they should be 
not less than 16 inches from the glass, to allow a free 
circulation of air between it and the foliage. It is 
scarcely necessary to point out the evil of having the 
foliage in close contact with the glass. The wires 
should be fixed at 1 foot apart. Moisture in the at- 
mosphere should be provided for in all vineries. See 
page 7, where there is described, in connection with 
pineries, the method I think best. 

DRAINAGE. 

The first thing that should be thought of and most 
effectively secured in the making of borders is drain- 
age ; for however great the skill otherwise brought to 
bear on the after-management of the vine, first-rate 
results need not be looked for if the roots are subject 
to stagnant water. One of the most important points 
in successful grape-growing, is the preservation in win- 
ter of the young roots made in summer, which is im- 
possible if the border is subject to stagnant water. Of 
course the extent and character of the drainage neces- 
sary have to be determined by the position of the vinery, 
the nature of the subsoil, and to some extent by the 
average amount of rain which is peculiar to the district. 
The amount of drainage necessary on the retentive clay 
of such as Middlesex, or in the lower ward of Lanark- 
shire, the Dumfries or Argyle coasts, where so much 
rain falls, would be superfluous on the rocks of some 
parts of Somerset, or on the generally dry soils of East 
Lothian. By these conditions should also be decided 
to what extent borders should be elevated above the 
natural ground-level. 

In preparing the site and drainage on damp reten- 



60 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

tive subsoils, let all the natural soil be excavated to 
the depth of 4 feet from the bottom of the arches 
or lintels at the front of the vinery, and, supposing 
that the outside border is to be 20 feet wide, give it 
a slope of 18 inches to the extremity of the border. 
The site for the inside border should be sloped to the 
same extent, upwards in the case of lean-to house, 
to the back wall. Lay down a layer of concrete, 3 
to 4 inches thick, over the whole site of the border. 
Eun a main drain parallel with the border at its 
extreme front, and 6 inches below the lowest level 
of the concrete. In order to make sure of the most 
perfect drainage, lay tile -drains at right angles with 
this main drain, up to the back of the vinery, at every 
8 feet. Over the whole surface of the concrete, and 
covering the tile - drains, spread a layer of broken 
bricks, road - metal, or round gravel with all sand 
sifted out - of it, to the depth of 8 inches. Finish 
off with a sprinkling of smaller gravel, and a turf, 
grassy side downwards, over, the whole surface. The 
site is thus ready for the border. The slope of the 
site, and soil, drains, &c., can be seen at a glance in 
fig. 7. 

On what may be termed healthy gravelly subsoils 
in dry localities, where water neither stands nor rises, 
such extra care in drainage is not absolutely necessary. 
But where there is the least chance of there not being 
a ready and immediate escape for water, no hesitation 
should ever be allowed as to the necessity of draining 
as has been directed. I have never seen vines do 
well in wet, and as a consequence cold borders, and 
know of instances where wet and unproductive bor- 
ders have been rendered fruitful by perfect drainage. 
Although the vine in a growing state requires much 



THE GRAPE VINE. 6 1 

moisture, it will not put up with stagnant water at 
any season. 

BORDERS THEIR COMPOSITION. 

In forming borders for the cultivation of grapes, 
greater regard should be directed towards the main- 
tenance of vines in such a condition as is likely to 
yield satisfactory crops for a lengthened period of 
time, than to the production of larger bunches with 
perhaps less certainty for a few years, to be followed 
by a general and rapid decline in the constitution of 
the vines, and, as a necessary consequence, in the 
amount and quality of the crops they bear. That 
such different results are to a very great extent indeed 
dependent on the mechanical and manurial state of the 
soil, is a fact that cannot fail to have become perfectly 
obvious to those who have studied the growth of the 
vine in borders of opposite characters and composition. 
That the vine will continue in a healthy bearing state 
for a greater length of time under favourable circum- 
stances than almost any other fruit -bearing plant or 
tree, is abundantly proved by the fact that of many of 
the same varieties that are cultivated in this country, 
there are in France and Italy whole vineyards, now 
in full bearing, which were in the same condition 
three centuries ago. And in this country there are 
instances of vines now bearing well in vineries 
that were planted some eighty, and others more than 
a hundred, years ago. I have inspected excellent 
crops of grapes on vines at Dumfries House, in Ayr- 
shire, which, I was told, can be traced back one hun- 
dred and forty-five years. At Speddoch, in Dumfries- 
shire, the seat of Gilchrist Clark, Esq., there is a 



62 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

splendid Black Hamburg vine, entirely filling a house 
70 feet by 22 feet, which annually bears heavy crops 
of magnificent grapes. Such vines are found growing 
in calcareous and not over-retentive soils, and many 
of the old vines on the Continent in an argillaceous 
gravelly soil, and some on the mere debris of rocks. 

While referring to these facts, it is not forgotten 
that there are other circumstances and important 
points in cultivation, connected more especially with 
the early forcing of grapes under glass in this country, 
which are of necessity adverse to the constitution and 
longevity of the vines. But these references show 
more forcibly what is invariably observed in practice 
viz., that deep, retentive, over-rich moist borders 
are not those from which vines with good sound con- 
stitutions and fine grapes are to be reared for a long 
series of years. And I would therefore urge on the 
inexperienced to avoid, on every consideration, the for- 
mation of borders of retentive soils with large infusions 
of manure. It is scarcely necessary now to warn them 
against carrion-borders. These have, we believe, long 
ago been abandoned as next to poison for vines. 

The result of rich retentive borders for the first few 
years, as long as the fibry or organic matter is decom- 
posing, is a strong, rank, long- jointed growth, having 
a decided tendency to be unfruitful if the season be 
dull and wet. The bunches most frequently produced 
from such a growth are long in the stocks a sort of 
production between a tendril and a bunch such as 
are most frequently attacked with shanking, and at 
last, when dished, show a disagreeable amount of 
long weak stalks. The roots formed in such pasty 
borders never ripen, and die back in winter to the 
thick inactive roots. 



THE GRAPE VINE. 

When such borders settle down, and the turfy part 
lias vanished, there is left a close adhesive, damp, rich 
mass of matter, most unfavourable to the thick fleshy 
roots of the vine. After a while the vines become less 
excitable. The grapes regularly shank, and do not 
colour ; and if the border is examined in winter, all 
the roots that can be found in it are entirely destitute 
of the fibry parts formed the previous season, the pre- 
servation of which is of great importance. 

The most successful grape -growers are now very 
unanimous in choosing a calcareous turfy loam, taken 
to the depth of 6 or 7 inches from the surface of an 
old pasture-field, as being the best for the fruitfulness 
and lengthened wellbeing of the vine. Such a soil, 
pure and simple, contains in itself all the elements of 
successful grape-growing for a good many years. It 
contains a large amount of fibre or organic matter, 
which in its slow decomposition supplies the elements 
of fertility. In choosing such a soil, that which is 
sandy and spongy should be avoided. This is what 
is generally termed " light sandy loam." It continues 
to grow vigorous vines, which bear fine grapes, while 
the fibry part of it lasts and is decomposing; but 
when the fibre has ceased to be in it, there is not 
stamina sufficient left for vines. A loam with what 
is generally termed more " body " in it should be 
selected avoiding, of course, that which has too 
much clay in it, and which, when its organic matter 
has decayed, becomes solid, impervious to air, and too 
retentive of water. The medium between these two 
soils is the best for grape-growing, that which may 
be described as having enough of sand or silicious 
matter in it to make it friable and prevent its ever 
becoming adhesive, in combination with as much clay 



64 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

or alumina as gives it body, constituting it a rather 
strong but friable loam. In all my observations and 
experience I have invariably found the most robust 
and fruitful vines growing in borders composed of soils 
of this description, especially when taken from the 
red sandstone formation. Although such a soil as 
this contains nearly all that is necessary for the pro- 
duction of first-rate grapes for some years, regard must 
be had to the time when the turfy organic matter 
in it has decomposed and changed into mould, leaving 
the border destitute of its primitive fertility, and less 
porous than is desirable ; and substances that will 
retain their manurial and organic character beyond this 
time must be added to it as shall now be directed. 

In taking the top spit of such old pasture-soil as I 
have described, the verdure and soil should be taken 
to the depth of half a spit, or about six or seven 
inches. It is very often found to be much infested 
with wire-worm, an insect which, when introduced into 
vine-borders, preys upon the young roots of vines. 
In time of severe frost these pests retreat downwards, 
and it is therefore best, if possible, to collect the soil 
when it is frozen. The turf should be stacked in the 
compost-yard for some months before it is used. I 
have, however, frequently carted it in when in a dry 
state, and prepared and mixed it immediately. When 
this has to be done, the grass should be cut closely 
off with a scythe before the ground is touched. In 
the process of chopping and mixing the turf, it should, 
if possible, be protected from wet ; and where there 
is not shed-room sufficient to hold it, it can be covered 
with wooden shutters or tarpauling. 

The loam should first be chopped up, but not too 
finely, mixing the fibry portion of it regularly with 



THE GRAPE VINE. 65 

the finer. Then to six parts of loam add one part of 
old lime-rubbish taken from old buildings, and one part 
charcoal. To every 6 cubic yards put 1 cwt. of rough 
bone-meal, and 2 cwt. of half- inch bones. When 
lime-rubbish can be more easily had than charcoal, 
and vice versd, the one can be substituted for the 
other. When a heavier soil than is desirable has to 
be taken, then add more lime-rubbish and charcoal ; 
and when the soil is lighter, use less of these sub- 
stances. In the absence of either lime-rubbish or 
charcoal, old brickbats pounded down to the size 
of road-metal can be substituted as the next best. 
I have used burned clay with good effect when 
other open material could not conveniently be se- 
cured. These porous materials, especially charcoal, 
have the power of absorbing carbonic acid gas and 
ammonia from the air, besides being conservative of 
moisture in time of drought, and absorb manurial 
applications, to be gradually given off to the roots of 
plants. We do not recommend that any animal 
manures, such as horse-droppings, be mixed with this 
compost. These should be applied as top-dressings 
when the state of the vines demands them. 

When the nature of the soil is essentially clayey, 
although the most turfy portion be taken, it never 
fails in after-years to revert to a clayey adhesive body ; 
a larger proportion, therefore, of the open materials 
named should be used, and the border need not be so 
deep. I would strongly urge that no more manure be 
used than the comparatively small proportion named. 
A border composed as has been directed, forms a body 
of soil of the best possible description for conveying 
to the roots in after-years nourishment from rich top- 
dressings and waterings without becoming soured and 

E 



66 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

unhealthy. When these materials have been all put 
together, turn the heap over at least twice before 
wheeling it into its place. As it should be dry, it 
may be firmly beaten with the back of a fork, or even 
gently trodden with the feet. But it should never 
be either mixed or wheeled when in a wet sodden 
state. To allow for its subsiding, it may be filled in 
6 inches higher than the ultimate level. 

Being well aware that there are many who may be 
desirous of growing grapes who cannot possibly get 
the top spit from an old pasture, and although 
this is recommended as the best soil, I am far from 
wishing to convey the impression that such is indis- 
pensable to the production of very fair crops of grapes. 
Wherever ordinarily good garden-soil is at command, 
there is no reason why grape-growing should not be 
attempted and attended with considerable success. 
Let it be supposed that the bulk of the border has 
to be composed of ordinary garden-soil, tolerably rich 
with humus, or vegetable matter in a state of decay, 
common to most garden-soils where vegetables have 
been grown. Take six parts of this as the base of 
the composition, add one part half-decayed stable- 
litter, mixing it well with the soil, and . forming the 
whole into a ridge to lie for a few months. Mean- 
time, if possible, collect as much of the tough turfy 
vegetation which generally abounds by the sides of old 
highways and roads on to which the road- drift or 
scrapings have been washed for years as will form 
about the fourth of the bulk required for the border. 
Such accumulations are generally one mass of vege- 
table fibre, an element so much wanting in old garden- 
soil. This should also be thrown into ridges to lie 
and partially decompose for a few months. Then it 



THE GRAPE VINE. 67 

can be chopped with the spade and thoroughly mixed 
with the heap of garden-soil and stable-manure. To 
this add the same proportions of lime-rubbish, charcoal, 
and bones recommended in the case of the top spit 
from old pasture. This will make a compost in which 
vines will grow vigorously and bear well, and one 
which will for many years be a good medium for 
feeding the vines with waterings of manure-water and 
top-dressings of manure. 

I have superintended the making of borders where 
the soil chiefly consisted of weeds or rack gathered off 
farm-fields and allowed to lie till it was half decom- 
posed or fully more, and then added the other con- 
stituents named to it, and a portion of soil burned, or 
rather charred, in the usual way, and the result for 
years has been most satisfactory. 

In forming these composts into vine-borders, the 
too common practice of making the whole of a wide 
border the first year is not a good one. The fact that 
a great proportion of the border must lie unoccupied 
with roots while the fibry and best part of it is un- 
dergoing decomposition without being of any service 
to the vines, is argument sufficiently strong against 
making the border the whole width the first, and in 
favour of extending the completion of it over several 
years. Eight feet outside the house is quite suf- 
ficient for the first year, and an addition of 5 feet 
for two successive years will complete a border 18 
feet wide. By this method an opportunity is afforded 
of seeing that the extremities of the roots are not 
running over-deep, and an upward direction can be 
given to them ; and the vines are afforded the stim- 
ulus of fresh soil to feed in for the first few years, 
which is of much importance. If the surrounding 



68 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

soil is of a character decidedly unfavourable, it is 
desirable to confine the roots within the limits of the 
artificial border. This can be done by a brick-and- 
cement wall. Where the natural soil is favourable, 
this is of less importance for late grapes ; but for 
grapes that have to be ripened not later than June, 
it is desirable to have all the roots in the made 
border, and thus under control. 

VARIETIES OF GRAPES. 

The varieties of grapes cultivated in this country 
have increased considerably of late, both by the in- 
troduction of Continental varieties and by the dis- 
tribution of seedlings raised in Britain ; consequently 
the inexperienced have greater difficulty than ever in 
making selections to meet their wants. The follow- 
ing are the varieties I recommend for early forcing in, 
say, a 40 -feet vinery admitting of 13 rods: 

6 Black Hamburg. 

3 Duke of Buccleuch. 

1 Buckland's Sweetwater. 

1 White Frontignac. ) Grafted on Muscat 

1 Grizzly Frontignac. J of Alexandria. 

1 Foster's White Seedling. 

Late grapes for using throughout the winter 
months : 

3 Lady Downes Seedling. 

4 Muscat of Alexandria. \ At hottest end of 
1 Alnwick Seedling. J house. 

1 Alicante. 

2 Gros Colemar. 
1 Golden Queen. 

1 Eaisin de Calabria. 



THE GRAPE VINE. 69 

When a long succession is required from one house, 
and early forcing is not practised : 

4 Black Hamburg. 

2 Duke of Buccleuch. 

1 Muscat Hamburg grafted on Muscat or 

Black Hamburg. 
1 Duchess of Buccleuch. 

1 Gros Colemar. 

2 Lady Downes Seedling. 
2 Muscat of Alexandria. 

For forcing early in pots : 
7 Black Hamburg. 

2 Duke of Buccleuch. 

1 Foster's White Seedling. 
1 White Frontignac. 
1 Duchess of Buccleuch. 

1 Madresfield Court. 

For growing in a cool vinery : 
4 Black Hamburg. 

3 Esperion. 

2 Eeeves's Muscadine. 

1 Foster's Seedling. 

2 Buckland's Sweetwater. 
1 Black Prince. 

In gardens where the vineries are numerous enough 
to admit of classing the Muscat, Frontignac, and 
others that require a high temperature together, it is 
always best to do so. And the late-keeping varieties, 
such as Alicante, Gros Colemar, Lady Downes, and 
Alnwick Seedling, should also be classed together. 

Those who have a fancy for very large bunches can 
grow the Syrian and Barbarossa. 



70 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

SELECTING VINES FOR PLANTING. 

The speedy and permanent well-doing of vines de- 
pends very much on the condition in which they are 
when planted. There are two descriptions of vines 
to which I have a decided objection. These are such 
as are raised by layers from old vines, and those that 
are more than one year old from the eye. The 
former method is not much practised now the latter 
is common enough. These, I have invariably ob- 
served, never start into growth so satisfactorily, nor 
do they ever make such vigorous and fruitful vines, 
in a given time, as those that are only one year old, 
provided that they have been properly grown and 
ripened. The one-year-old vine is what I consider 
the best and most desirable for general planting, 
especially in the case of inexperienced cultivators. 
At the same time, it is a matter somewhat difficult 
to decide whether a plant raised from an eye in 
spring, and planted when 2 or 3 feet high in May 
or June, will not equal, if it do not actually outrun 
in the race of success, the year-old plant. For my 
own part, in the case of vineries such as have been 
recommended admitting of the vines being planted 
inside, I would have some difficulty in making a 
choice between a well-ripened and well-rooted one- 
year-old plant and one raised from an eye the same 
spring. The results from both descriptions of plants 
are so nearly alike that it is of little moment upon 
which the choice should fall. But, as has been 
already said, the one-year-old plant is safer in the 
hands of the inexperienced ; and directions for rearing 
and planting both these descriptions of plants will be 
given. 



THE GRAPE VINE. 71 

PREPARING YOUNG VINES FOR PLANTING. 

To prepare one-year-old vines for planting, about 
the middle of January select the necessary number of 
strong prominent buds from vines that have thorough- 
ly well and early ripened their wood. Cut away the 
wood to within a quarter of an inch on the upper 
side of the bud, and that on the under side to within 
an inch making clean cuts with a sharp knife. The 
buds are thus ready for insertion. Take the required 
number of 4-inch pots, drain them well, and fill them 
up rather firmly with three parts light fibry loam, 
and one part of finely-sifted, well-decomposed leaf- 
mould. Make a hole in the centre of each to receive 
the buds, into which they are to be inserted, and sur- 
rounded with a little propagating sand. Cover them 
to the very tips of the buds. When they are put in, 
place them in a house slightly warmer than a common 
greenhouse ; and if the soil is moist, do not water 
them for a week. The first week of February re- 
move them to some house or pit where they can be 
plunged near the glass in a bottom-heat of 80 to 85, 
with a night temperature of 55 to 60. Keep them 
steadily and moderately moist, and they will soon 
burst their buds ; and as they begin to develop their 
leaves, raise the temperature 5, and let it run up 10 
more with sun-heat by day before giving air. The 
process of leaf-development and the formation of roots 
will be nearly simultaneous, although generally leaves 
slightly precede the roots. Consequently, after they 
have formed two or three small leaves, they halt in 
growth till the roots have fairly commenced their 
work. At this stage see that they do not become 
over dry. Just keep the soil moist, but not wet, and. 



72 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

always with water at a temperature of 80. As soon 
as the young roots reach the sides of the pots and 
down to the drainage, raise them by degrees out of 
the plunging material, and place them on its surface. 
Eange the night temperature at 65 at night, with 10 
or 15 more by day with sun. As soon as they have 
pretty well filled their pots with roots, and begun to 
grow away freely with stronger and more transparent- 
like growth, shift them into larger pots : 7 and 8 inch 
pots are large enough for growing vines into an ex- 
cellent condition for planting ; for far more depends 
on the character of the roots they make, and the ripe- 
ness and soundness of the canes, than on mere bulk 
of growth. 

There is nothing that so much influences the char- 
acter of the roots that young vines make after this 
stage as the nature of the soil, and the position in 
which they are grown. Take one of these young vines 
now ready for a shift out of a 4-inch pot ; let an 8 or 
10 inch pot be drained, as is so often the case, with a 
few large pieces of broken tiles or even bricks put into 
the bottom of the pot in a careless manner : pot it in 
a soil of rather tenacious character, and add a large 
proportion of rotten manure ; then plunge in bottom- 
heat, and grow it crowded together with others far from 
the glass, and what is the result ? The soil, instead of 
being thoroughly filled with well-ripened fibry roots at 
the end of the season, is only occupied by a compara- 
tively few long fleshy roots, which never ripen properly, 
and die in the winter. The cane itself is not of that 
compact, short-jointed, well-ripened stamp which alone 
is a sure indication that all is right. When such a 
vine is shaken out in spring to be planted, it is found 
comparatively rootless, and in every way inferior. 



THE GRAPE VINE. 73 

Take the same young vine and shift it into a well 
and carefully drained pot not larger than 8 inches, in 
a compost composed of a good, sound, rather light loam, 
having a fourth part of thoroughly decomposed manure, 
and a sprinkling of bone-meal and sand mixed with it. 
Pot firmly, and place it on the surface of the plunging 
material, or even on a shelf or the floor of a light 
house, and grow it the whole time without bottom- 
heat, and the result is a potful of beautiful well- 
ripened fibrous roots, that keep fresh through the 
winter in such quantity that when they are shaken 
out of the soil for planting in spring, the pot appears 
to have been full of roots and nothing else. There is 
no comparison between these two descriptions of vines 
for planting. All is in favour of the latter, of course. 
Avoid, therefore, in growing young vines, badly-drained 
pots, a close retentive soil, and bottom-heat after they 
are well rooted. 

All summer they should be grown on at an average 
temperature of 70 at night, with from 10 to 20 
more by sun-heat in the afternoon for a while when 
shut up. No check for lack of water should ever be 
risked while in a growing state ; for besides other evils, 
they will, if not well supplied with water both at the 
root and in the atmosphere, be very subject to the 
ravages of red-spider. Of light, the grand consoli- 
dating and ripening agent, they should -have as much 
as possible. All vines grown in the shade of other 
vines, or anything else, should be avoided. The lateral 
growth should be kept regularly stopped to one bud, 
and the vines stopped at 5 feet. They are often al- 
lowed to grow longer, but it is a mistake, inasmuch as 
the buds lower down the vine, where the permanent 
growths generally start, are never so strong and plump 



74 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

as when stopped shorter. The finest planting vines 
I ever grew were in 6 and 7 inch pots, and stopped 
at 3 feet. They were ready to burst their pots with 
finely -ripened fibry roots, and their tops stood stiff 
and erect like hazel-rods, studded with prominent 
buds. It would save nurserymen much space and 
labour if planters would accept smaller vines of a con- 
centrated and well-ripened growth. Much could also 
be saved in packing and carriage, and the article would 
be in most instances of a far better character. 

After the growths are thoroughly browned, and there 
is no danger of the main buds starting, the laterals 
should be entirely removed ; but do everything to pre- 
serve the foliage on the main growth intact to the last. 
Should the foliage suffer from any cause, in that case 
leave the lateral leaves. Give plenty of air in all 
stages of their growth, or they will be liable to get 
crippled from excrescences forming on the under sides 
of the leaves, an affection which is brought on by a 
too damp atmosphere with too little air. As the ripen- 
ing process goes on, expose them to a free circulation 
of dry warm air. After they have shed their leaves, 
place them for the winter where neither their stems 
nor roots are exposed to more than a very few degrees 
of frost. Care should be taken that the roots are 
never allowed to become mealy dry. Too much wet 
must also be avoided. A cool shed where the pots 
can be plunged in decayed tan or leaves free from 
worms will winter them very well. 

To grow such plants into strong fruitful vines for 
fruiting in pots the following year, it is only necessary 
to shift them on into 11 -inch pots, grow them to from 
6 to 7 feet in the full blaze of the sun, and in all 
other respects to treat them like those for planting. 



THE GRAPE VINE. 75 

When the pots are well filled with roots in both cases, . 
water them three times weekly with weak guano and 
dung water alternately. 

An excellent system of preparing young vines, both 
when they are intended to be struck from eyes and 
planted the same season, and when to be grown in 
pots for either planting or fruiting in pots the fol- 
lowing spring, was adopted for the first time by Mr 
Thomson of Tweed Vineyard when he planted the 
immense graperies there. It is described by him as 
follows : 

" I indicated that I considered the present system 
of preparing young vines for planting had a good deal 
to do with the early declension of the.fruitfulness of 
the vine, and I now proceed to give a sketch of the 
method I adopted in the spring of last year for pre- 
paring something like 1500 young vines, half of 
which were intended for my own planting. On the 
7th of last February I placed a layer of very fibry 
turf over the pavement of a pine-pit, under which 
were pipes for giving bottom-heat. On this turf I 
laid 4 inches of fine turfy loam ; made small holes in 
it at about 6 inches apart these were filled with 
white sand and a vine eye was placed in each, so 
as to be just covered. They started in the usual way, 
and grew rapidly, throwing out strong roots from the 
eye. When these roots had begun to interlace each 
other, and the vines were from 6 inches to 9 inches 
high, they were cut round by a strong knife, so that 
each vine was isolated on its own piece of turf. The 
points of their roots being cut, they flagged for a few 
days, but soon threw out scores of small active roots 
from every large one that was cut. When this had 
taken place, a small trowel was run under each square, 



76 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

and the plants lifted and placed on a similar bed of 
turf, but this time from 9 inches to 12 inches apart, 
and filled in round about with soil of the same char- 
acter as at first, avoiding manure of any sort. Here 
they soon began to grow rapidly again ; and when 
they had attained the height of 3 feet, and the borders 
were ready for them, they were cut round as in the 
first instance, and allowed to stand till a fresh set of 
young roots were just started, when they were raised 
on a spade, with ball quite entire, and placed in their 
new borders. This operation was easily performed, 
and they received not the smallest check, but grew 
rapidly at once ; and when cut back some to 1 
feet and others to 3 feet just eleven months from 
the day the eyes were placed in the sand, their 
average girth is from 2 to 3 inches ; and they are 
ripe, close -jointed, and solid as hazel-sticks to the 
apex of the houses some 22 feet. Those that were 
not required for planting were potted ; and for this 
purpose I can as strongly recommend the system as 
for planting. When vines prepared thus come to be 
turned out of their pots in the process of planting, 
there is no occasion for breaking up the ball, for there 
are no coiled roots in it to disentangle they are more 
like those of a box or privet bush than a vine, as 
usually seen ; and when planted, they begin by taking 
their work before them, instead of running away out 
of the border. 

" So much for the vines. And now as to what may 
be done with a view to retaining this tendency to a 
multiplication of small active roots across the border. 
Just make up 3 feet of it inside and 3 feet outside the 
house the first year. In April or May of the second 
year, fork down 1 or 2 inches of the face of this bank 



THE GRAPE VINE. 77 

of soil, both inside and outside the house ; and against 
the roots that will there be found, some of them taking 
the lead, place a section of sharp river or pit sand, or 
gravel, at least 4 inches thick. As soon as the roots 
enter this poor sharp material, they will branch into a 
thousand small active roots, and enter the layer of new 
soil that has been subsequently laid against this sand 
or gravel. This may be repeated at every addition to 
the border, and the result will be that, instead of a 
few long, straight, naked roots, the whole border will 
be full of a class of active woody roots, that survive 
the cold and wet of winter infinitely better than those 
great snake -like ones formed in rich soil. These 
perpendicular sections of sand or gravel have the 
additional advantage of acting as drains to draw off 
superfluous water/' 



TIME AND MANNER OF PLANTING VINES. 

To fix a given day or week, irrespective of circum- 
stances, for the performance of gardening operations, is 
now very much a thing of the past. In the planting 
of vines this is especially applicable ; they may be 
planted from February to August, according to circum- 
stances. In order, however, to get the best possible 
growth the first year, spring and early summer are the 
best seasons to plant. It is only where vineries and 
borders cannot be got ready in time, or where a crop 
has to be cut the same season from the house to be 
planted, that later planting should be practised. The 
exact time in the early part of the year should be 
decided by several considerations, such as the charac- 
ter of the season, the state of the vines themselves, 
and whether the vines are intended for being forced 



78 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

early or for late crops. Just as the vines, in the case 
of one-year-old plants, are bursting their buds in a 
cool place, is the condition, all other things being equal, 
in which they are ready to make a vigorous start. 
The exact time when this takes place depends con- 
siderably on the time they ripened and shed their 
foliage in autumn. When kept in a cool airy place, 
they are at this stage, in ordinary seasons, about the 
end of March or beginning of April, which is a good 
time to plant. When intended for early forcing, I 
recommend their being planted about the middle of 
February, when, in the case of early varieties, they can 
be easily excited into growth by fire-heat. It is an 
established fact, that being started early one season, 
they are the more susceptible of early excitement the 
next ; and consequently they can be brought sooner 
into an early forcing condition when planted and 
started somewhat early. Late varieties intended for 
late grapes should, on the other hand, be planted just 
as they begin to burst their buds in a cool place, which 
is generally in April. 

For a vigorous start and growth, April and May are 
the best months to start young and newly-planted vines. 
Except in the case of those required for early forcing, it 
is best to wait for long days, bright sun, and the natural 
impulse of the plant, before applying much fire-heat. 

In the case of vines struck from eyes the same 
spring, the end of May is a good time, just as the 
plants have attained to about 2 feet in height, and 
their roots have been prepared according to the Tweed 
Vineyard practice. I have, however, planted them at 
various times from May to July with very similar suc- 
cess. In one case where I had to ripen a crop of grapes, 
in the same house I planted vines about 4 feet high at 



THE GRAPE VINE. 79 

the middle of July, putting a supernumerary to every 
light, from which I cut ripe grapes the following July, 
thus not losing a year's crop. 

Manner of Planting. How to plant is of more im- 
portance than when to plant, for the success of after- 
years depends more upon it. Let it be supposed that 
the border is in readiness for the plants. Here there is 
a mass of soil, and one of the chief objects aimed at in 
planting should be how best to do it, so as to cause the 
roots to take the most equable and thorough possession 
of it in their progress of growth. If the vines be turned 
out of their pot without breaking their balls or "shak- 
ing them out," nine out of every ten will not form a 
fresh growth from the old roots, but will stand still 
until there are young roots pushed out from the stem 
above the old roots, immediately under the surface of 
the soil. These roots will of necessity be few in num- 
ber, but strong, and will push away into the border 
without branching much for a time. This, of course, 
is undesirable. If the roots are thoroughly divested 
of the soil and spread carefully out, and if at the same 
time 1 foot or 18 inches of the stem is laid in the 
soil, they will in this case also stand still, until the 
stem throws out a whorl of strong roots near the sur- 
face of the soil, and the vines will entirely forsake the 
old roots. This will more especially be the case if the 
old roots are, as sometimes happens, laid out into 
the cold outside border, and the stem emerges from 
the border inside, where it is subject to the influence 
of the hot-water pipes. These two ways of planting 
are consequently objectionable. 

The best way is to thoroughly divest the roots of 
all the soil, wash them clean in tepid water, and dis- 
entangle them carefully. Should any of them be much 



8O FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

stronger and longer than the others, cut these back, and 
dash a handful or two of dry sand about the roots, and 
give them a shake. Koot-pruning, however, is rarely 
necessary when vines are grown as has been directed. 
The vine is thus ready for planting. Eemove the soil 
to the depth of 9 inches, and to a width sufficient to 
take in the extended roots. In this space carefully 
place the vine, spreading out the roots and keeping 
the stem 6 inches off the front wall. Cover up the 
lower roots with some of the finest of the soil, making 
sure that every root stretches regularly out from the 
stem all round. Pack the soil firmly about them with 
the hand, and lay down each layer of roots with soil in 
between and about them, till those nearest the surface 
are covered 3 or 4 inches deep. Fix a stake in the soil 
at the back of the vine, tying the top of it to the first 
wire, and tie the vine neatly to it, so that as it grows 
and strengthens the stem may be straight and neat. 
Settle the soil about the roots with water through a 
fine rose at a temperature of about 100; then cover 
the surface of the soil with a layer of old mushroom-bed 
manure, to prevent evaporation and the necessity for 
frequent watering. This is especially necessary if the 
roots are near the pipes. Supposing that the lights are 
6 feet wide, let a permanent vine, to be brought away 
with two rods each, be planted to each rafter. This will 
give a rod to every 3 feet run of the vinery. Vines 
should never be thicker, and in many cases 6 inches 
or a foot more will be to the advantage of the vine, 
though many begrudge the room. In the centre of 
each light plant a vine to be trained with one stem, 
for the purpose of being fruited the following season, 
half-way up the roof; and where as many grapes as 
possible are, as is usually the case, an object, plant a 



THE GRAPE VINE. 8 1 

set of vines every 6 feet along the centre of the house to 
crop the top half of the vinery. This double set applies 
to wide vineries, one set being enough for vineries not 
more than 14 or 15 feet wide. These temporary sets 
of vines can be grown the first year and fruited the 
second without any detriment to the permanent vines, 
and when the temporary vines have fruited one or two 
years they can be removed. I refer to the quotation at 
p. 75 for the manner of planting spring-struck vines 
prepared on the Tweed Vineyard principle, and which, 
as will there be seen, is as simple as planting a straw- 
berry plant the aim of the whole of the excellent 
method of root-pruning and planting there described 
being to get the vines to start into growth from 
the very stem with a great quantity of h'bry, instead 
of a few strong fleshy, roots. When this method of 
root -pruning and growing the young vines without 
their ever being potted cannot be adopted, they should 
be grown in flat shallow trays, and the vines planted 
before the roots get cramped and begin to twist and 
coil. Vines may be planted quite well when 1 foot 
high. I once planted a quantity when about 8 inches 
high, and put a bell-glass over them for two or three 
days, because the roots had been disentangled and laid 
carefully out ; but there can be no doubt about the 
superiority of the root-pruning and non-potting sys- 
tem. When planted in outside borders-, place some 
dry litter over the roots, removing it on sunny days, 
but putting it on at nights to retain heat. 

TREATMENT THE SEASON THEY ARE PLANTED. 

Under this heading I begin by stating that I consider 
the point to be aimed at is the largest possible amount 

F 



82 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

of well-ripened wood and roots. On the attainment of 
this depends to a very great extent the production of 
vines the second season that will yield first-class grapes 
the third year of their growth. Presuming that the 
vines are planted and started into growth with fire- 
heat in April, as soon as the buds are burst half an 
inch or so, rub them all off, in the case of the tem- 
porary vines to be fruited next year, down to near the 
top of the front sash. After they advance a little more, 
and a good strong bud can be selected a few inches 
below the top of the front light, remove all except it 
and another in the meantime, in case any accident 
should occur to one of them. In the case of the per- 
manent vines at each rafter, rub them all off down to 
the bottom of the rafter. From thence let one bud 
come away as a leader, and ultimately leave just other 
two, one on each side of the stem, starting from half a 
foot or so below the leader. These three shoots, with 
their lateral growths, and the temporary vines, will be 
enough to cover the whole roof with foliage without 
crowding any of the leaders. 

Raise the night temperature to 60, and admit air 
in the morning as soon as the thermometer rises 
above 75 with sun, increasing the air as the heat 
increases. Apply fire - heat sparingly the greater 
part of the day with sunshine. Keep the atmos- 
phere moderately moist, and gently syringe the vines 
and sprinkle the floor with tepid water when the 
house is shut up in the afternoon. After the plants 
that have been raised from eyes the previous sea- 
son make some 8 or 9 inches of growth, they gener- 
ally stand still for eight or ten days ; and I have 
known the inexperienced have great impatience, and 
fear lest something serious was amiss as the cause of 



THE GRAPE VINE. 83 

an almost total cessation of top-growth. This pause 
is consequent on the growth having been so far sup- 
ported by the stored-up sap in the stem and roots of 
the vine, which when exhausted brings the growth 
to a standstill, till the roots get into action and 
send up a fresh supply of sap. During this cessa- 
tion, if the weather be bright and a good deal of air 
has to be admitted, they may droop a little in the 
middle of the day, in which case it is advisable 
to shade them slightly for a few hours, keeping 
the air moist, and to syringe the young growths at 
shutting-up time till the roots begin to grow. The 
first indications of this are easily noticed in the pro- 
duction of stronger tendrils than formerly, and in the 
fresh expansion of tender-looking leaves. These are 
sure signs that the last year's fibres have sent out 
young rootlets ; and if one of the vines were lifted 
at this stage, the young whitey-green roots would be 
found starting at innumerable points. When they 
begin to grow freely, range the night temperature 
from 65 to 70, with a rise of from 10 to 15 by 
day with sun-heat. Keep the steaming apparatus 
full of water, and the surface of the border sprinkled 
in the morning, and again at shutting-up time when 
the weather is bright. A corresponding decrease of 
moisture must take place in the absence, of sun, and 
only syringe the foliage occasionally on the afternoons 
of bright days after the vinery is shut up. Very soon 
after they make the fresh start alluded to, they will 
grow with gradually increasing rapidity and vigour. 
They should be carefully looked to every second day, 
and have the fresh growths fastened loosely to the 
wires with soft matting, the tendrils pinched off, and 
the lateral growths regulated not pinched back to a 



84 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

single leaf, as is sometimes practised. The whole of 
the roof should be furnished, but not crowded, with 
foliage, and the pinching and tying of the lateral 
growths regulated with this end in view. In propor- 
tion to the extent of foliage will be the extent of the 
roots formed in the border. This treatment of course 
applies to the permanent vines, from which no fruit is 
to be taken the following year ; and all the growth 
and expansion that the roof affords them without 
shading the temporary vines should be allowed them. 
When they reach the top of the house they may be 
trained down the back wall. In the case of those 
planted with the intention of their bearing a crop of 
fruit the following year, a more restricted growth is 
desirable. The laterals should be regularly stopped 
when they form two leaves, and the leading shoots 
stopped when they reach little more than half-way 
up the roof; and those planted for cropping the upper 
portion of the house should be stopped when they 
reach past the top wire. These being restricted, and 
their energies, so to speak, concentrated, they form 
better-developed buds on the main stems, from which 
the crop of next season is produced. Care, however, 
must be exercised in stopping with the same pertina- 
city after the leader is stopped, for there is a danger 
of the main buds bursting if the laterals are then too 
closely pinched ; so that it is better to allow them to 
grow more for a time near the top, where some few of 
the main buds generally push after the stopping ; and 
these, too, should be allowed to grow a little till the 
stem gets firmer, and there is no danger of the buds 
bursting lower down. 

Watering must be attended to after the vines have 
started into rapid growth, and sufficient applied at 



THE GRAPE VINE. 85 

intervals to keep the inside border moist. In the 
middle of summer, and before the roof gets so covered 
with foliage as to protect it from the sun, examine 
the soil at least every week, and water it when neces- 
sary. Should the season be very dry, the outside 
portion of the border will be the better for a slight 
mulching of half -decayed litter, which will prevent 
the necessity for watering so much. The inside border, 
after the roots have penetrated into it, will also be the 
better of a similar mulching, but only to a slight ex- 
tent. Avoid applying water that has not stood in the 
vinery cisterns for some time to get warmed a little. 

I am not favourable to syringing much, but it does 
more good and less harm to young fruitless vines than 
under other circumstances, and it is a preventive of 
red-spider. As the season advances, and the sun gets 
powerful, leave air on to a small extent all night after 
syringing the foliage, and it should be increased as 
early as 6 A.M., in order to get the foliage dry before 
the sun acts powerfully on the glass, otherwise the 
foliage may suffer under the clear glass now used. 

The night temperature during the summer months 
may range from 70 to 75, when the necessity for 
lire-heat is at its minimum. With the increase of 
light, air, and heat, atmospheric moisture should be 
increased, and vice versd ; but by all means avoid at 
any time a close, stagnant, damp atmosphere. As 
soon as the wood begins to ripen, admit more air, 
causing a circulation among the foliage by opening 
the front lights more freely, and gradually decrease 
the amount of moisture. Examine the foliage, and if 
there be any red-spider on it, give a few vigorous syr- 
ingings, and take every means of keeping the foliage 
in a healthy state, till the vines have matured it, and 



86 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

throw it off in a natural way. When the wood gets 
dark brown and well solidified, open all the ventilators 
to their full extent, except in times of high winds, 
which might injure the leaves, it being indispensable 
to the proper maturing of the roots and wood that the 
foliage should remain its natural period on the vines. 



MANAGEMENT OF VINES THE SECOND SEASON. 

Pruning. -When the vines have rested about three 
weeks after they have shed their leaves, pruning should 
not be delayed any longer. Cut down the permanent 
vines at each rafter to about 1 foot below the top of the 
front light or bottom of the rafter. The general practice 
is to cut them down exactly to the bottom of the rafter ; 
but as they are to be trained with two fruit-bearing 
and permanent rods, I prefer cutting them lower down, 
both because the two permanent rods can be more 
easily trained into their proper place, and because the 
first few buds formed at the base of long young rods 
are never so prominent, and do not break and show 
fruit, or come away into strong lateral growths, so 
well as those further up the rod. By cutting them 
below the angle, these weaker buds are formed where 
they are not so important for fruit-bearing the follow- 
ing season. Shorten back those that have been grown 
with a single rod, to bear fruit for a year or two, to 
about 8 feet. The day after they are cut, dress the 
wounds over with styptic, to prevent any possibility 
of their bleeding in spring when the sap begins to 
move. Young strong vines are more apt to bleed than 
older ones. Wash the wood-work and glass, and other- 
wise thoroughly clean the house. If there has been 



THE GRAPE VINE. 8/ 

any red-spider about the vines the previous year, wash 
them with a soft brush and soapy water. 

Then fix the vines in their proper places to the wires, 
remove the dry soil which is loose in the surface of 
the inside border, and fork the surface to the depth of 
two inches, or as far down as there is no danger of 
interfering with the young roots. Put as much fresh 
soil over the surface as has been removed, and the 
house is ready for starting when required in spring. 
During the course of winter or early spring an eke of 
fresh soil should be put to the borders, presuming that 
only a portion of them was made the first season. Any 
protection from rain during winter that has been put 
over the outside border should not be removed till the 
vines are starting in spring. 

Throughout the whole spring keep the house cool 
and well aired, applying no more fire-heat than is just 
sufficient to exclude frost. Vines intended for the 
supply of late grapes should be allowed to break into 
growth without the aid of fire-heat. This in ordinary 
seasons they will do from the middle to the end of 
April. In the case of vines intended for early forcing, 
.shut up the house on the 1st February, and apply fire- 
heat to keep the temperature from falling below 45, 
to be increased to 50 at night by the beginning of 
March, and 60 as soon as the vines have pushed their 
buds a quarter of an inch the temperature to be in- 
creased and regulated as directed for the first season's 
growth, and as shall again be referred to in treating 
of the fruiting year and forcing the vine. The vines 
will this season grow with rapidity, and, having their 
growth concentrated into two rods, with great strength. 
Throughout every stage of their growth up till the 
ripening period, the inside border must be regularly 



88 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

watered, so that there be no chance of a check from 
over-dryness at the root. It is impossible to say ex- 
actly when water should be applied; it must be applied 
before the soil gets very dry and begins to crack. It 
is a good plan, after the vines are in full growth, to 
mulch the border slightly with rotten manure, such as 
old mushroom-bed dung. The same attention to at- 
mospheric moisture and airing as directed for the first 
year's growth, of course applies to that of the second. 

Instead of permitting the lateral growths to ramble 
as directed for the first season's growth, do not allow 
them to make more than two leaves, and stop the main 
growths as soon as they reach half-way up the rafters. 
This stopping causes the buds on the lower part of the 
vines that are to bear next year to become fuller and 
stronger. Allow the leader to break and grow on to 
the top of the house, there to be stopped finally. After 
this stopping allow the lateral growths, especially those 
on the top part of the vine, to make another leaf, to 
encourage root-growth. Now is the time that the most 
rapid thickening of the rod and the full development 
of its buds take place. If all be right they will swell 
with astonishing quickness, bursting their bark and 
expanding their foliage to the full. At this stage see 
that none of the ties by which they are supported get 
too tight and cut them. 

Keep a constant look-out for red-spider if the weather 
be hot and dry ; and if it appears, give a few vigorous 
syringings with clean tepid water. The outside border 
should also be watered two or three times in summer 
in dry seasons, and a slight mulching applied as directed 
for the inside border. From the daily inside sprink- 
lings the outside border is more likely to get injuriously 
dry than the inside one in hot summers. When the 



THE GRAPE VINE. 89 

ripening process has turned the rods brown and the 
laterals up to the second joint, remove the third leaf 
from every lateral. This will encourage still further 
the plumping up of the main buds at the base of the 
laterals, and from which the crop is to come next year. 
In a few weeks after,, the second leaf should be removed, 
thus leaving one on each lateral, which, with all the 
foliage on the main rod, keep green and healthy as 
long as possible. Give more air as the ripening of the 
rods goes on ; at the same time gradually decrease 
moisture in the air ; and rest not satisfied until the 
wood is solid and well ripened. If any doubt exist 
on this point, in dull seasons especially, maintain the 
fire-heat and a circulation of dry warm air till they 
are brown and hard as a haze^-rod. A large, flabby, 
and ill-ripened growth will bring nothing but disap- 
pointment ; and if this point of culture is not gained, 
all else will avail little. When perfectly ripened, fire- 
heat of course should be discontinued, and the house 
be as well aired as full ventilation will admit. The 
temporary vines need not be discussed under this head; 
for the management of the third and fruiting year 
applies to them as well as to permanent vines. Suffice 
it to say, that they may be allowed to bear from eight 
to twelve bunches, according to their strength. I have 
planted and grown temporary vines over and over again, 
from which the second year I have taken twelve bunches 
of grapes. A set of vines planted in 1870 out of 6- 
inch pots, and treated in all respects as I am directing, 
made each twp hard solid rods the second year of their 
growth, many of which measured 2f inches in circum- 
ference. From the temporary vines I took in most 
cases twelve bunches averaging 2 Ib. each. The tem- 
porary vines which furnish the bottom part of the roof 



90 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

should be cut out immediately the crop is cut the second 
season. Those at the top can be left to bear another 
season without detriment to the permanent vines. 



MANAGEMENT OF VINES THE THIRD AND FRUITING YEAR. 

Pruning for the First Crop. For the first crop the 
vines should be fruited to little more than the extent 
of one-third the rafter, it being of much importance to 
get the buds at the bottom of the vine to start strongly 
and evenly the first year, to secure at once strong 
fruiting spurs and buds all over the rods. If the rods 
are left longer than this, especially if they have to be 
started early, the top buds are apt to break strongly, 
and those below are less likely to keep anything like 
pace with them. With this shortening back, and the 
cutting off of the laterals close to the bud on the rods, 
the pruning is complete for the first fruiting season. 

Time to commence Forcing, &c. After cleaning the 
vines as recommended for the previous season, the 
whitewashing of the walls and the thorough cleansing 
of everything connected with the house, the border 
should be pricked up with a fork, and a top-dressing 
of about two inches of rotten manure spread all over 
it. The time to start the vines of course depends on 
when ripe grapes are required, and whether the vines 
are ultimately intended for early forcing. If started 
last year at the 1st of February, they may this season 
be started three weeks earlier with fire-heat, having 
previously, in gardening phrase, shut up the house for 
fourteen days which means that the vinery be kept 
close without fire-heat unless the weather be frosty, 
when during that fortnight the temperature should be 
kept ranging from 40 to 45 at night. Vines started 






THE GRAFE VINE. 91 

at the 1st of January generally ripen their crop from 
the middle to the end of June. The following year 
forcing may commence three weeks earlier, and so on, 
till, if required, the forcing may begin in November, 
to ripen the crop in April. 

In starting young strong canes early, there is much 
more difficulty in getting them to break regularly 
than there is with weaker or older vines ; and to 
prevent their breaking and growing at the top before 
the bottom buds start, fix the vines to the lower 
wires only, and bring down their tops semicircle form 
to near the floor of the house, where the temperature 
is lowest. In this position allow them to remain till 
they have burst into growth over their whole length. 

The good old system of putting a bed of leaves on 
the inside border is a great assistance in getting the 
vines to break regularly and strong. By turning a 
portion of the warm leaves over at intervals, they 
give heat and moisture sufficient to the air for the 
first fortnight, and throw some warmth into the soil 
besides. There is much difference of opinion as to 
the utility of heating vine-borders from beneath by 
means of hot -water pipes, but for very early forcing 
there can be no doubt it is of great service when 
judiciously applied. That vines started in November 
or any of the winter months start earlier and more 
strongly in borders heated from beneath, has been 
abundantly proved ; and where such a means exists, 
it should be applied to raise the temperature of the 
soil at the commencement of forcing to say 60. 
When vines that have a portion of their roots in 
outside borders have to be started before March, they 
should be covered in October with fern-leaves or straw, 
so that the heat may be retained in the soil, and to 



92 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

throw off rain and snow ; and a fortnight before forc- 
ing is commenced, a bed of leaves, as recommended 
for the inside border, should be laid on it, to be also 
protected from rains, that would wash the heat out 
of it. 

Temperature. Apply fire-heat sparingly for the first 
fortnight ; give just sufficient in conjunction with the 
heat which escapes from the bed of leaves, to keep the 
night temperature at 45 in cold frosty weather, and 
at 50 when the weather is mild. After the first 
fortnight raise it by degrees to from 50 to 55. As 
soon as the buds have fairly started, give 5 more by 
degrees, making a point of rising to 60 when the 
young shoots are showing their bunches. By the 
time they are in bloom it should be raised to 65, 
which is sufficiently high as a night temperature in 
the earlier months of the year. Eange the day tem- 
perature with sun-heat from 1 higher than the night 
in the early part of the season, to 15 as the natural 
heat increases and less fire -heat is needed to keep 
it up. 

The temperatures which are here recommended 
are sufficiently high for the early months, when 
mostly dependent on fire-heat. But further on in 
summer, especially after the grapes are thinned and 
stoned, and a higher temperature can be kept up with 
a minimum of fire-heat, the night temperature may be 
kept at 75 till late at night. Muscats, from the time 
they show their bunches onwards, require 5 more 
than the general run of other varieties ; and to set 
Muscats well in the months of April and May, the 
night temperature should be 70. As soon as the 
grapes begin to colour, a slight and gradual decrease 
of temperature should take place ; and in the case 



THE GRAPE VINE. 93 

of summer-ripened grapes, entirely discontinued after 
they are quite ripe. I have always found that grapes 
that have plenty of time to colour put on the finest 
finish both in colour and bloom. 

Moisture. As soon as artificial heat is applied, 
syringe the tines three times a-day with clean water 
at the same temperature as the air, or rather warmer. 
Keep the steaming-tray full night and day. A moist 
atmosphere, as all early forcers of the vine are aware, 
is of great importance in exciting vines to start regu- 
larly and freely. It keeps the bark on the stem moist 
as well as the coating on the buds, and is much more 
favourable to a good " break " than dryness. Continue 
the syringing till the first young leaves are formed, 
then discontinue it, and do not resume it again till 
the grapes are cut, unless rendered necessary by the 
presence of red-spider. There is, perhaps, no urgent 
objection against constantly syringing the foliage, ex- 
cept when the vines are in bloom and the grapes 
colouring. But, unless to keep down red-spider, I 
could never see that it did any good ; and to syringe 
with some waters in which there are deposits such as 
lime, spoils the appearance of the fruit. Moreover, 
syringing has the objectionable tendency to drive the 
foliage out of its natural position. And on bright 
mornings, if all the moisture is not dried up through 
the night, there is a risk of getting the leaves injured 
by the rapid evaporation of the moisture off the leaf, 
or what is generally termed scalding. 

When syringing is discontinued, in the case of early 
forcing with a maximum of fire-heat, keep up a con- 
stant supply of moisture by means of the steaming 
apparatus and daily sprinklings. Even in the case 
of Black Hamburgs, and other free-setting sorts, it 



94 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

should not be withheld when the vines are in flower. 
Atmospheric moisture, however, must not be carried 
to excess, especially in the mornings. An over- 
moist atmosphere when the house cannot be regularly 
and freely ventilated, to a certainty produces those 
excrescences so often met with on the under sides 
of vine-leaves, in dull wet seasons especially. It is 
desirable to follow nature as far as possible, and the 
foliage of vines and all plants should be allowed 
to become perfectly dry, and surrounded with a com- 
paratively dry air for a time, once in the twenty- 
four hours. It gives a texture and strength to the 
foliage which cannot be attained under the influence 
of too much moisture. When colouring is first noticed, 
avoid withdrawing the moisture suddenly, but let it 
be done gradually till it ceases altogether, when the 
grapes are nearly fully coloured. A dry air is favour- 
able to the proper ripening of grapes which have to 
hang for months after being ripe, and fire-heat should 
be applied at intervals in fine days, when the ven- 
tilators can be opened to carry off the moisture. On 
damp days it is best to keep the house shut up. 

It is not very easy to give definite directions how 
often borders should be watered. If the borders are 
well drained, and the soil open, vines when in full 
growth and bearing require a great amount of water. 
Before forcing commences, the border should have a 
good soaking, and it should never afterwards be al- 
lowed to get very dry, Whenever it shows signs of 
dry ness or cracking in the least, give a good watering, 
always with water at 8 0. I do not approve of allow- 
ing inside borders to get mealy dry, even after the 
grapes -are ripe, or when they have all been cut. Even 
then the constitution of the vine requires that the soil 



THE GRAPE VINE. 95 

be moderately moist. After vines have borne a few 
full crops in borders, manure-water may be freely used 
in a moderately strong state, always avoiding rank 
doses of any preparation. Sheep, deer, and cow manure, 
and guano, make excellent manure-water for vines. 

Ventilation. Air should be admitted daily from the 
time the vinery is shut up for forcing. This is neces- 
sary for the double purpose of changing the atmo- 
sphere, and preventing its rising above the maximum 
temperature. When the air is cold and frosty, as it 
frequently is early in the season, it should be admitted 
in small quantities at a good many points. Large 
volumes of air admitted at a few places cause violent 
cold currents, which are undesirable, and hurtful to 
the tender foliage. As the vines advance into leaf, 
and the sun gets strong, give a little air early in the 
morning to allow the moisture that may be about the 
foliage to escape before the sun comes fully on the 
house. The amount of air should be increased by 
degrees till the sun is in meridian, and again reduced 
as the sun declines. Unless in exceptionally stormy 
or cold weather, a little air should be left on all night, 
This is especially necessary in these days of large 
close-lapped panes of glass. When the grapes are 
colouring, give more air than at any previous stage ; 
and when quite ripe, let a constant and more bountiful 
supply of air circulate about them. 

It frequently occurs that vineries have to be erected 
against existing garden - walls ; and in cases where 
these walls are too low to give the proper pitch to the 
roof, a good plan is to raise them with mullions and 
sashes, corresponding exactly with the front ventilat- 
ing lights, the only difference being that the back 
lights are hinged at the bottom, and open from the 



9 6 



FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 



top outwards. Fig. 8 represents this method of both 
elevating and ventilating. The roof can, in this case, 
be constructed of sashes in one length, and be fixed. 




FIG. 8. 

An overhanging coping to the back provides for wet- 
weather ventilation, by allowing the sash to open 
outward to a certain extent without letting wet in. 
Of course, this method of ventilation is not to be 
recommended for early forcing, as the opening is 
to the north ; but for summer vineries it answers 
admirably. 



WEIGHT OF CROP, THINNING, DISBUDDING, ETC. 

Cropping vines too heavily is a prevailing error in 
grape-growing. Presuming that the rafter is, say, 24 



THE GRAPE VINE. 97 

feet long ; that the young vines are to bear to a third 
of this length the first year, and that they show more 
than a bunch to each shoot: remove them all but 
one to a shoot as soon as they are far enough advanced 
to be got hold of; and after the berries are set pre- 
suming that the bunches are large, as they generally 
are on young vines remove all but four bunches on 
every rod. This will leave eight bunches on a vine. 
Of course the largest and most shapely are generally 
left ; and in most cases it may be presumed they will 
average at least 2 Ib. or more. This is a crop sufficient 
for the first year in the case of permanent vines. 
None of these bunches should be left on the leading 
shoots, which should not be stopped this year till 
they reach the top of the house. When the vines 
are in full bearing, 1J Ib. of grapes to every foot run 
of the main stem of the vine may be regarded as a 
fair crop. 

In disbudding the side growths of young vines, due 
regard must be had to a regular establishment of per- 
manent fruiting points or spurs. From 18 to 20 
inches apart will be close enough ; and this will 
generally call for the removal of two buds for every 
one left all along the main stem. These side fruit- 
bearing growths should be stopped two or three joints 
beyond the bunch that is left. This, generally speak- 
ing, will give foliage sufficient to clothe the whole roof, 
when the main stems are trained 3 feet apart. If 
there is room for a more lengthened growth, it should 
be allowed to those from which the bunches are all 
taken off. This gives foliage enough to sustain the 
vines in vigour. Closer stopping has a tendency to 
weaken the vines in time. Allow the lateral growths 
which spring from the axils of the leaves of these fruit- 

G 



98 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

bearing shoots to form one leaf, then stop them, and 
do not allow them to make more growth the whole 
season. A lesser number of large well -developed 
leaves is preferable to a greater number in a crowded 
condition. 

As soon as the shoots can be tied down without 
fear of their breaking, carefully bring them down 
till they can be tied to the under sides of the wires. 
This operation must not be attempted at once. They 
must be brought down by degrees, beginning with 
them when their points have nearly touched the 
glass. Even when they can be tied down safely at 
one time, they frequently force themselves off the 
main stem in the course of a few hours. Shorten 
the laterals, on the portion of the main stem which 
is not bearing, to one leaf, when the wood has become 
brown. 

In thinning off the bunches to the number directed, 
make a partial thinning when the shoots are tied down, 
and the final thinning when they are out of bloom, 
except in the case of Muscats, the thinning of which 
should be left till it can be seen which bunches have 
set their berries most regularly. The thinning of the 
berries should take place, in the case of Hamburgs 
and all free-setting sorts, as soon as the berries attain 
the size of radish-seeds. But with the shy-setting 
sorts it is best to delay their thinning till they are 
larger, and it can be seen which are properly fertil- 
ised and which are not. 

SPUR-PRUNING FOR NEXT SEASON'S CROP. 

It is now very generally admitted that the close- 
spur system of pruning is the best i.e., to cut back 



THE GRAPE VINE. 



99 



this season's fruit-bearing growth to within an eye 
or bud of the main stem. Fig. 9 will show the in- 
experienced at a glance what this means. In each 
succeeding year the pruning takes place back to the 
single bud at the base of last season's bearing growth. 
As the vines get older, a cluster 
of buds generally forms at the 
spur, notwithstanding this close 
pruning. Only the strongest of 
these that grow are left to bear 
fruit. This close pruning is 
much preferable to leaving two 
or three eyes. Not only can the 
vines be maintained for a long- 
er time in a more manageable 
and sightly condition, but they 
yield more compact serviceable 
bunches, that swell their berries 
better than those long and 
looser bunches generally pro- 
duced from buds further from 
the main stem. Prune, espe- 
cially vines to be forced early, 
immediately they have shed all 
their leaves. The wounds 
should always be dressed with 
styptic to prevent any chance 
of bleeding. When in the 
course of time spurs get long and unsightly, a portion 
of them can be cut right back to within an inch of 
the main stem, and the adventitious buds there will 
break again and form fruit-bearing wood. By cutting 
back a certain number annually, they can thus be 
kept within bounds, or young rods can be brought 




FIG. 



IOO FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

away from the bottoms of the vines, and the old ones 
cut out altogether. 

TRAINING. 

With regard to the extension system of training, by 
which a vine is made to fill a whole house, there can 
be no objection to it, provided a border extending 
away from the front of the vinery in proportion to the 
extension of the branches can be secured for that large 
range which an immense vine, filling it may be one 
large house, requires for its roots. This condition se- 
cured, there can be no objection urged against what is 
called the extension system. Another matter to be 
taken into consideration is, that a vine having its roots 
extending to an immense border area is less under con- 
trol, especially for early forcing. All things considered, 
I prefer in a general way a compromise between the 
one-rod and the extension system ; and think that a 
vine limited to two main rods is, in by far the majority 
of cases, more under the control of the cultivator, and 
best adapted for early forcing. 

For the supply of summer and autumn grapes, there 
can be no objection to filling a house with a vine or 
two, provided that a run of border congenial to them 
can conveniently be provided for such large vines. In 
some localities where the vinery is set down in a soil 
naturally congenial, there is little difficulty in this re- 
spect. But in the majority of cases the border has to 
be artificially prepared and limited ; under such cir- 
cumstances, it is better to restrict the vines to two or 
three rods. 



THE GRAPE VINE. -*,-, -, ;,IOI 

KEEPING GRAPES THROUGH THE WINTER. 

To preserve grapes successfully on the vines through 
the winter months, in the first place the crop should be 
rather on the light than the heavy side, the berries should 
be more severely thinned than in the case of summer 
grapes, and they should be thoroughly well ripened by 
the end of September. Large bunches should be even 
more severely thinned than smaller ones, which latter 
generally keep better than larger ones, because the 
air circulates more freely through the heart of them, 
and consequently damp is not so likely to settle about 
them. It is also of much importance that the foliage 
should be kept healthy as long after the grapes are ripe 
as possible. Grapes grown in heavy damp soils are not 
so likely to keep well as in drier borders; and in locali- 
ties where the autumn rainfall is heavy, it is advisable 
to protect the outside borders from rain before the grapes 
are quite ripe, for grapes ripened under the influence of 
too wet borders do not keep so well. The inside bor- 
der should not be damped in any way after the grapes 
have commenced to colour, but a slight top-dressing of 
dry finely-pulverised old mushroom-bed dung should be 
spread over it, and allowed to become perfectly dry, and 
remain so all winter. Not a pot-plant requiring water 
should be allowed in the house. An equable tempera- 
ture of from 45 to 50, according to the weather, should 
be kept up by means of fire-heat when necessary. Extra 
heat should be put into the pipes on fine days, and air 
put on at top and bottom to expel damp from the house. 
Avoid the practice of firing with the view of drying up 
damp on wet or foggy days. It has the effect of draw- 
ing a stream of moisture through the house, to be con- 
densed on the surface of the berries, and cause them 



Ida : ^;^g^UIX:C^JLnjRE UNDER GLASS. 

to damp. When such weather occurs, rather keep the 
ventilators shut, and keep a very slight warmth in the 
pipes. Grapes are now very successfully preserved by 
being cut before the dead of winter, after the vines have 
shed their leaves, with a portion of wood attached to 
the bunch, which is inserted in bottles of water having 
a few pieces of charcoal in them, and ranged in rows 
in racks made for the purpose, in a dry room where the 
temperature can be steadily kept at about 40. In 
this way they can be kept for many weeks ; and where 
it is necessary to have plants stored in late vineries, 
it is far preferable to leaving the grapes to take their 
chance along with them. Of course, the flavour of 
the grape is slightly deteriorated from imbibing part 
of the water. But it allows the vineries to be used 
for other purposes, and the vines to be pruned be- 
fore there is any chance of their bleeding. 

GENERAL MANAGEMENT OF BORDERS. 

In many cases borders do not receive that amount of 
attention after they are first made, necessary to keep 
them in good condition for a lengthened period. The 
management of the borders being only another term 
for the management of the roots, its importance is not 
easily overrated. I have recommended that in making 
borders, their completion should extend over a period 
of at least three years. It would, however, be greatly 
to the benefit of vines, if all interference with the 
border and roots did not end there. It is for many 
reasons not always convenient to keep adding to the 
front of the borders for an indefinite number of years. 
Space alone, in most instances, forbids this ; and this 
being the case, the roots have a tendency, more espe- 



THE GRAPE VINE. IO3 

cially when their outward extension is barred, to seek 
downwards, far from the influence of heat and air, and 
where the soil is constantly moist. Fortunately this 
tendency can be counteracted, for roots have the habit 
of going to points where they are fed. 

In order, then, to keep the roots as near the surface 
as is desirable, the most successful means is to remove, 
at intervals of two years at least, all the inert soil that 
is found on the surface of the border unoccupied with 
roots. This should be carefully done with a fork, and 
sufficiently deep to lay bare some of the roots without 
disturbing them much. Then cover them over with 
a mixture of fresh loam two parts, rotten dung or 
horse-droppings one part, and lime-rubbish or charcoal 
pounded rather finely one part, with the addition of 
half a barrowful of bone-meal to every six barrowfuls 
of the mixture. Lay this over the roots to the depth 
of 6 or 7 inches. If this top-dressing is kept moder- 
ately moist, the roots will work upwards into it and 
multiply rapidly. In the heat of summer a light 
mulching of half-decayed stable-litter should be spread 
over it, to prevent moisture from evaporating and the 
necessity for much watering. In thus treating a border 
of vines that have to be forced early, the top-dressing 
should be put on in the autumn, before the border is 
covered up from cold and wet, and the heat from the 
fermenting material will warm the new surface-soil, 
and all the more encourage the roots to work upwards. 

In all localities where the rainfall is great, vine- 
borders should be protected from excessive moisture ; 
for unless the borders are in superexcellent order, and 
the roots all thoroughly ripened, a great quantity of the 
small fibry roots which are made in summer die off 
through excessive moisture, and this tells very much 



104 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

against the vines when they start into growth. I have 
first laid on the surface of the borders a layer of fresh 
leaves, and then thatched it with wheaten straw. This 
incurs much labour and litter. Wooden shutters are 
much better, and corrugated iron ones better still, and 
in the long-run the cheapest, from their durability. 
The water which runs off these coverings at the front 
of the border should be conducted by open gutters into 
some drain, so that it does not keep the ground in front 
of the border, where there are generally a mass of roots, 
damp. 

Vine-borders should be copiously watered in the 
heat of dry summers ; and to prevent rapid evaporation, 
and nourish the vines as well, they should always 
have a covering or, as it is generally termed, a 
mulching of farmyard manure. All cropping of the 
borders with vegetables or flowers is an evil, and 
should never be practised. 

There is much difference of opinion as to whether, 
in the case of early-forced vines, applying a bed of 
fermenting material all over the surface of the outside 
border a short time before forcing commences, is any 
more effective in the absence of any means of heat- 
ing from below than simply to cover the border to 
a considerable depth early in autumn with some dry 
material, to conserve the heat which exists in the soil 
at that time. I once tested a border that had been 
covered up early in autumn with 1 foot of leaves and 
then thatched with straw ; and found, on plunging a 
thermometer in the soil to the depth of 1 5 inches, that 
in sixteen minutes it rose to 60. I regularly cut 
grapes in April from the vines in this border, with all 
the roots outside the vinery, and never applied any 
other means of heating. 



THE GRAPE VINE. IO5 



KENOVATING EXHAUSTED VINES. 

Vines are not unfrequently injured "by cropping 
them too heavily for a series of years. This is ap- 
parent in the weakly character of their growth and 
diminutive grapes. Where the border is considered 
in a sufficiently good condition not to require renew- 
ing, the best treatment for vines thus broken down 
is either to forego a year's crop altogether, or to crop 
them very lightly for a year or two. At the same 
time, the surface of the border can be dealt with as 
I have described at page 103, and the vines can be 
otherwise fed. While undergoing this process, they 
should be encouraged to make as much foliage as 
space will allow. 

Exhaustion of vines from crowded training and 
close stopping is sometimes met with in its worst 
forms. As has already been referred to, the rods of 
vines should never be trained closer than 3 feet, and 
the fruit -bearing spurs not closer than 18 to 20 
inches. I have seen, in conjunction with close train- 
ing, the fruit-bearing wood pinched at the bunch, or 
just one joint beyond it. This, with anything like 
heavy cropping, is certain in a very few years to 
cripple the vines. They are in fact smothered, and 
worked hard into the bargain. To put fresh vigour 
into such vines, cut the superfluous rods, out, to give 
those left more room, and let the laterals grow two or 
three joints beyond the bunch. 

The premature destruction of foliage is another 
fertile source of injury, whether it takes place from 
red-spider or scorching. The evil most commonly 
arises from the ravages of spider. As the pulmonary 
arteries of the body convey the blood to the lungs, 



106 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

there to be exposed to the air we breathe and undergo 
change, and be diffused through the system for its 
nourishment, so is the sap in the vine sent up to the 
leavesj there to undergo change, and be made fit for 
plant-nourishment. And injury to the lungs does not 
more certainly lead to debility in the animal, than 
does the premature destruction of the foliage to the 
vine or any other plant. 

Early forcing, especially when the roots are in a 
cold ill -drained border, is most injurious to vines ; 
and when the principal cause of exhaustion is from 
a cold ill-drained soil, and where they are otherwise 
in such a condition that good results might be ex- 
pected from them if in a more congenial border 
the best way is to clear away the whole soil, disen- 
tangling and saving every root that can be saved, to 
make the drainage effectual, and make a new border, 
carefully planting the vines again. The best time for 
this operation is in autumn after the grapes are cut, 
while the vines are still in leaf and able to make fresh 
roots. Supposing the vines have roots in both out- 
side and inside borders, the one -should be renewed 
one year and the other the next. When the oper- 
ation commences, shade the roof with canvas ; and 
after the roots are laid in the fresh soil, give a good 
watering at 120, and cover up the border with dry 
litter to retain the heat. In 1856 I lifted a house of 
vines, as thus recommended, the first week in October 
only the whole instead of half the roots were 
lifted and by the end of July 1857 cut a fair crop 
of grapes from them. And in December of 1858 I 
lifted a vine after it had been three years planted, and 
planted it in another vinery in which I had previously 
commenced the forcing of pot-vines, and it ripened 



THE GRAPE VINE. IO/ 

ten good bunches in May 1859. These instances are 
mentioned... to show how well vines bear being carefully 
transplanted or lifted. 

THE POT- CULTURE OF GRAPES. 

Now that we have such good keeping varieties of 
both black and white grapes, that hang even till May, 
there is perhaps less necessity for forcing pot-vines 
for the supply of grapes in March and April than 
existed some years ago ; still the production of grapes 
from pot-vines is perhaps more extensively practised 
now than ever it was. When certain varieties of 
grapes, such as Black Hamburg and other early sorts, 
are required in the end of March and April, I consider 
it better to produce the first month's supply from pot- 
vines than to start permanent vines in October and 
November to supply them. The vines in most in- 
stances ultimately succumb to the process ; whereas, 
if started a month or six weeks later to succeed pot- 
vines, they are much more easily kept in fair condi- 
tion, and, moreover, produce better crops. I have for 
many years regularly ripened a crop of grapes from 
pots in April, and kept up the supply by ripening a 
succession for May and June from permanent vines, 
and consider this the best method to adopt where 
early grapes are required. 

There are other cases where pot-vines supply grapes 
in a most acceptable way, such as when vines and 
vine-borders have to be renewed ; in which case a 
vine in pot can be fruited at intervals among the 
young vines, without the one injuring the other. In 
cases where I have had vines and borders to renew, I 
have ripened a crop from pots in April and May, and 



108 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

then planted the young vines in time to make good 
canes the same season, the supernumeraries of which 
were fruited heavily the following season thus not 
losing much by the renewal of borders. 

Vines in pots are also successfully dwarfed and 
fruited in small pots on the Chinese system for the 
purpose of dinner-table decoration, for which purpose 
they are very interesting. Mr W. Thomson, who il- 
lustrates this practice by an engraving in his ' Practical 
Treatise,' describes this process : " When the vines are 
placed in heat, a small pot is slipped over the rod, 
and in this pot a neatly-made stake painted green is 
placed, and the soil filled in round it. Through this 
stake a strong set of wires are run at right angles with 
each other, to which the branches of the vine are tied. 
The small pot gets filled with roots by the time the 
grapes are ripe, when it may be detached from the 
large pot and set in a small vase on the table, when 
the tree-like plant, with its fine pendulous bunches, 
looks all that can be desired." 

The cultivation of grapes in pots differs in no 
essential way from that of permanent vines, except 
that they require constant watering, and feeding at 
the root with mulchings and manure -water. They 
should always, if possible, be plunged in a gentle 
bottom-heat at least, till they are fairly started into 
growth. 

INARCHING VINES. 

It is now a well-established fact, that some of the 
more tender and much -esteemed varieties of grapes 
succeed better when inarched or grafted on to others 
of a more vigorous constitution, and the practice is 



THE GRAPE VINE. log 

now quite common. Inarching on to established 
vines enables the cultivator to introduce new or desir- 
able sorts, at a time when it may not be possible to 
plant them out in new borders ; and by the same pro- 
cess those who have only a very limited accommodation 
for vines can have any variety introduced into their 
collection with the greatest ease. 

There are many well-known ways of inarching and 
grafting the vine, but there is none which I have ever 
seen practised that is so simple, or that makes so com- 
plete and speedy a union, as that of uniting two young 
green growths in the ordinary way of inarching. I 
have often taken a young vine struck from an eye 
when not more than 18 inches high, and inarched it 
on to the growing side shoot of a vine. The rapidity 
with which the two unite is wonderful. All that is 
necessary is to place the young vine in a position 
suitable for joining it to the stock,. then with a sharp 
knife to cut a slice from its side about 2 inches long 
and about half through the young growth at its 
deepest part. Then a similar slice is cut from the 
stock, and the two wounds nicely adjusted to each 
other. First, in tying them, let the two be rather 
easily fixed to each other above and below the union, 
and then bind them sufficiently close with soft matting 
to cause them to fit nicely together. In fourteen days 
they will have so far united that the ligature may be 
slackened a little to give the wood room to swell. In 
another fortnight the union will be complete. During 
the process supply the young vine with water till the 
union is formed, and then, if the plant is not required, 
it may be allowed to dry off altogether ; or where this 
is undesirable, it should be cut through below the 
union by degrees, and the top cut off the stock in 



110 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

fourteen days after, that the sap may bs entirely 
directed to the young vine. 

Were a graft of a young vine in a ripened state 
put into my hands that I desired to work on to another 
vine, I would much rather strike an eye from it, and 
inarch it green wood to green. The process is more 
simple and certain, and the union becomes more per- 
fect in a shorter time. 

After experimenting with various stocks, I have 
come to the conclusion that the Muscat of Alexandria 
and Black Hamburg are the best stocks, especially the 
Muscat ; and such varieties as the grizzly and white 
Frontignacs and Muscat Hamburg, which are not so 
much and generally grown as their merits deserve, do 
best on Muscat of Alexandria. I have also found 
Black Hamburg the best stock for Golden Champion 
and Duke of Buccleuch ; and the finest bunches and 
berries, both as regards colour, size, and flavour, of 
Gros Guillaume that I have ever seen, I have had from 
grafts grown on the Muscat of Alexandria. 

SETTING UP GRAPES FOR EXHIBITION. 

Grapes are very often inefficiently set up for exhi- 
bition, and are consequently not seen to the best 
advantage. This is especially the case at some of 
what may be termed country shows. I have therefore 
thought that fig. 10, taken from a photograph, would 
serve to show exactly what is generally considered by 
exhibitors of grapes the best way of carrying and set- 
ting up grapes for competition. The bunch, it will 
be observed from the figure, is resting on a slanting 
board. The board is first covered with a thin sheet 
of cotton wadding, and then with a sheet of soft white 



THE GRAPE VINE. 



Ill 



paper. The bunch is cut with rather more than an 
inch of the -vine adhering to each side of its stem. A 
piece of narrow tape is fastened to the piece of vine, 
and passed through a hole near the top of the back 
perpendicular board, and securely fastened there. To 
keep the bunch firmly in its place, a piece of narrow 




FIG. 10. 



soft tape is worked with great care between the berries 
near the middle of the bunch with a long needle, and 
each end of the tape is passed through holes previously 
prepared on each side of the main stem of the bunch 
and tied underneath. The bunch is thus fixed so that 



112 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

it can neither slip down the slanting board nor roll 
about. 

When more than one bunch is set up, the grape- 
board must be of proportionate length. But it is 
not desirable to have them longer at any time than 
will hold three to four bunches, with sufficient space 
between each to let them be properly inspected. 

It is always best to fix the bunches just as they 
are cut from the vines, laying them on their flattest 
side. In doing this it is never desirable to lift a 
bunch after it is laid on the board, for it cannot 
be easily done without more or less disturbing the 
bloom of the grape. When all are fixed in their 
places, fit what I shall call the exhibition platform 
into a square box just wide enough to take it in, and 
deep enough to clear the fruit when the lid is screwed 
on. Then put a couple of screws through the box 
from the outside into the back board of the platform, 
and they cannot move. In conveying them, care 
must be taken to keep the box level, and not to jolt 
it severely. 

PACKING GRAPES. 

The packing of grapes to be sent long distances by 
rail and other conveyances requires to be carefully 
managed. There are many ways of packing them. 
I have seen each bunch laid on a thick stiff sheet of 
paper and folded up sufficiently tight to prevent the 
bunch from moving about in the paper. They are 
then packed closely in boxes deep enough to admit 
a layer of paper-shavings under and over them, so 
that when the lid of the box is fastened down each 
parcel was" held securely in its place. The stiffness 



THE GRAPE VINE. 113 

of the paper is supposed to come in contact with the 
bunch at fewer points than when wrapped up in 
more flexible pape*", and on that account to better 
preserve the bloom. There is, however, at the same 
time, room left for the oscillation of those berries not 
in immediate contact with the paper, and this is 
objectionable. In sending grapes to a distance I 
have never adopted this mode of packing, but have 
either wrapped each bunch in a sheet of fine tissue- 
paper, and packed them on a firm bed of paper- 
shavings as close as they would lie, with just suf- 
ficient wadding between each to fill up the irregu- 
larities of the outline of the bunches. When the 
box is thus filled, a sheet of wadding is spread 
regularly over the bunches, and over all a layer of 
paper-shavings ; so that when the lid is shut down 
they are subject to as much pressure as prevents 
their moving. At other times, when only sending 
a few bunches in one compartment of a box, I have 
spread a sheet of paper over the shavings in the 
bottom of the box, and laid all the bunches as nicely 
fitted into each other as possible on it, then put 
another sheet of tissue-paper over them, then some 
cotton-wadding, finishing off with a layer of paper- 
shavings. In this way I have always found them 
go quite safely. When a quantity has to be sent in 
one box it should be divided into compartments, so 
that when the box happens to be set down standing 
on end or side, the grapes at the lower part of it 
cannot possibly be subject to much pressure from the 
top end of the box. I do not know of any way of 
sending them to preserve their bloom, for unless some 
person is sent with the box there must be packing 
material on the upper side of the grapes. 

H 



114 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

INSECTS TO WHICH VINES ARE SUBJECT. 

Red- Spider (fig. 11). Until the advent of the 
Phylloxera, this was the most formidable insect to 
which vines are generally subject. It is far more 
troublesome on some soils and in some seasons than 
others, being worst on hot gravelly soils and in dry 
localities, and least prevalent on moist soils. It 
thrives best in a hot dry atmosphere, and is far more 
common where hard firing has to be practised early 
in the season. On vines that start naturally in April 
and May, and that do not require much fire-heat to 
ripen the crop, it is generally not much to be feared. 
Whenever it makes its appearance on the foliage, the 
best way is to attack it immediately before it spreads 
with a sponge. Put as much Fowler's Insecticide 
into warm soft water as will colour it, and with this 
sponge every leaf on which it first makes its appear- 
ance. It generally appears at some particular spot 
near the heating apparatus ; and though sponging it 
off may seem a slow process, yet an active hand can 
soon go over a great number of leaves ; and, in the 
long-run, I have always found this to be the least 
laborious method. After the sponging, if clean water 
is easily got, give the vines a vigorous syringing for 
a few days in succession. Keep a look-out for the 
insect constantly after the first attack, and deal with 
it in the same way. There is no doubt that con- 
stantly syringing the vines is the best preventive, and 
syringing is much to be preferred to the destruction 
of the foliage by spider. In some waters, however, 
there are deposits which discolour the grapes, and it 
is very undesirable to use water of that description 
unless the sediment can be filtered out of it. Sulphur, 



THE GRAPE VINE. 




FIG. 11. 



hot-lime, and soot in equal parts applied to the pipes, 
also help to keep it in check : the former does no 
harm to the vines, but it must not be applied till the 
grapes have approached the stoning period, or the 
result will be rusted berries. 

When vines get dry at the roots, they are very 
subject to spider ; and it is important for this cause, 
if for no other, to keep them regu- 
larly moist. The old loose bark 
should be cleanly removed from vines 
every year and be well scrubbed with 
soap and water, using a rather stiff 
brush. Every part of the wood- 
work and glass should be thoroughly 
scrubbed every year, and kept well 
painted, the walls washed with hot- 
lime, having a little sulphur mixed 
with it, the pipes painted yearly, and every crevice in 
which the foe can find a refuge filled up. 

Thrip (fig. 12). This is an insect which can hardly 
be said to be indigenous 
to the vine ; but when 
plants, such as azaleas and 
others, are kept in vineries, 
thrip is very apt to get on 
the vines. It is very 
troublesome and destruc- 
tive. Of course the best 
preventive is to keep plants 
which are subject to it out 
of vineries. Hand-spong- 
ing and fumigating with 
tobacco-smoke for two or three consecutive evenings 
are the most effectual ways of dealing with it. Like 




FIG. 12. 



Il6 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

the spider, a dry warm atmosphere favours the spread 
of the thrip. Such soft woolly-leaved vines as Gros 
Colemar are apt to be injured by strong doses of 
tobacco-smoke, so that this cure must be cautiously 
administered. 

Mealy Bug. This, like thrip, will not appear on vines 
unless brought into the vinery on other plants. But 
once it gets a footing, it is one of the most troublesome 
of insects, and if left to have its own way, will breed 
with wonderful rapidity, and overrun the whole wood, 
foliage, and fruit. The very first appearance of it 
should be the signal for dealing with it as promptly 
and thoroughly as possible. While the vines are in 
leaf, the most effectual way is to pick it off with a 
pointed piece of stick. The summer season is the 
time to deal most successfully with this insect while 
it is moving about. The vines should be very care- 
fully looked over each week, and every appearance of 
the bug destroyed. This must be followed up till the 
leaves drop off. After the vines are pruned, every morsel 
of loose bark under which it creeps must be removed, the 
vines thoroughly scrubbed with water, in which about 
the size of an egg of soft soap and a gill of tobacco- 
liquor to every gallon has been mixed ; then fill up 
every crevice by applying Gishurst's Compound, at the 
rate of 8 ounces to a gallon of water, with a brush. 
The spring following examine the vines after they start 
every few days, and destroy any bugs that appear. 

Phylloxera vastatrix. Horticulturists have within 
the last few years had a most formidable addition to 
the host of foes with which they have to grapple in 
the successful cultivation of the grape vine. And it is 
scarcely possible to conceive of a more Insidious and 
destructive enemy than the new invader Phylloxera 



THE GRAPE VINE. 1 1/ 

vastatrix is proving itself to be. Any who have had 
an opportunity of watching the destructive power of 
this tiny insect, will not be at all surprised to know 
especially when the enormous interest that France 
has at stake in her vineyards is taken into considera- 
tion that the French Government are so alarmed 
at its appearance that they have offered a reward of 
12,000 to any person who will devise a means 
of destroying the pest, without, at the same time, de- 
stroying the vines. But as yet no such remedy has 
been discovered. According to the report of E. L. 
Beckwith, Esq., on the wines of the Universal Exhibi- 
tion at Paris in 1868, the quantity of wine manufac- 
tured annually in France amounts to 831,000,000 
gallons, exclusive of 165,000,000 distilled into brandy. 
Taking this enormous sum at the very low average rate 
of 2s. 6d. per gallon, it can easily be understood why 
France is so much concerned and dismayed at the pro- 
gress of a foe which perils the very existence of her 
vineyards, and how this arrny of insects threatens to 
be a more formidable enemy, in a pecuniary sense, 
than the squadrons of a German Emperor. It is 
already committing alarming ravages in some of the 
wine departments of France, and has spread into Spain, 
Portugal, and Austria. 

About eight years ago the Phylloxera unfortunately 
made itself known in this country, and has proved 
fatal to the vines in some English vineries, crossed the 
Channel to Ireland and the Borders to Scotland. I 
have recently heard of its fatal effects in a good many 
of the English counties. I have no conclusive proof 
up to this time that it exists in any place in Scotland 
except Drumlanrig, although I have heard of the vines 
in several places in Scotland having in some cases died 



Il8 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

outright, and in others been curiously affected. Al- 
though such circumstances are suspicious, it can only 
be hoped that it is not the result of Phylloxera. 

After the most careful observation, I have come to 
the conclusion that there does not exist in British 
gardens another insect that can be compared to Phyl- 
loxera, in the rapidity and certainty with which its 
work of destruction, in the case of the vine, is carried 
on, nor one that is so difficult to combat successfully 
without the most prompt and ultra means. And in 
the interest of British grape-growing, all who have any 
knowledge or experience of this destroyer should pro- 
claim its whereabouts, and record their experience and 
observations ; and at the same time, and above all, 
give it no quarter by risking its existence by any half- 
measures, but remorselessly stamp it out as the most 
formidable pest that ever found its way into a vinery. 
Indeed I do not know that it is not a matter quite 
worthy of being dealt with as the rinderpest in cattle 
has been dealt with by the powers that be. 

It will be in the recollection of many of our readers 
that in the ' Gardener ' of 1869 (page 202), illustrations 
of this insect are given, and a paper which originally 
appeared from the pen of M. J. E. Planchon in the 
' Comptes-Kendus de 1'Institut' is translated. The 
history and habits, as far as then known, of the pest, 
are thus minutely described : 

" I will here give a brief resume of all I learnt about the habits 
of the Phylloxera vastatrix from a series of observations made on 
the spot, in three short visits to the south of France ; also all I 
noticed with reference to the specimens which I kept in glass 
bottles during forty consecutive days. 

" Its best-known form is that in which no trace of wings can 
be discovered. When the insect is about to lay its eggs (that is, 
in its adult female state), it forms a small ovoid mass, having its 



THE GRAPE VINE. 



119 



inferior surface flattened, its dorsal surface convex, being sur- 
rounded by a kind of fillet, which is very narrow when it touches 
the thoracic part of its body, which (formed by five rather indis- 
tinct rings) is hardly separated from its abdominal part of seven 
rings. 

" Six rows of small blunt tubercles form a slight protuberance 
on the thoracic segments, and are found very faintly marked on 
the abdominal segments. The head is always concealed by the 
anterior protuberance of the buckler; the antennae are almost 
always inactive. The abdomen, often short and contracted, be- 
comes elongated towards laying-time, and there can be easily 
seen one, two, or sometimes three eggs, in a more or less mature 
state. 

" The egg sometimes retains its yellow colour for one, two, or 




Fio. 13. 

Phylloxera vastatrix (J. E. Planchon). Female specimens and their egg. a a, 
Antennae ; b b, Horns or suckers ; c, Egg plainly visible in the body of the insect ; 
/, Winged form of the insect. All greatly magnified. 



three days after it has been laid ; more often, however, it changes 
to a dull-grey hue. From five to eight days generally elapse 
before it is hatched. The duration of this period depends a good 
deal on the temperature. The quantity of eggs, and the rapidity 
with which they are produced, are probably determined by a 
variety of circumstances the health of the insect, the quantity 
of nourishment it is able to obtain, the weather, and perhaps 



120 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

other causes. A female which had produced six eggs at eight 
o'clock A.M. on the 20th of August, had fifteen on the 21st at four 
P.M. that is, she laid nine in thirty-two hours. Other females 
lay one, two, or three eggs in twenty-four hours. The maximum 
quantity is thirty in five days. The eggs are generally piled up 
near the mother without any apparent order, but she sometimes 
changes her position so as to scatter them all around her. They 
have a smooth surface, and adhere lightly to each other by means 
of a slimy matter which attaches to them. 

" Hatching takes place through an irregular and often lateral 
rent in the egg, the empty and crumpled membrane being found 
among the other eggs in different stages of hatching. 

" During the first period of their active life two, three, four, 
or five days, as the case may be the insects are in an erratic 
state. They creep about as if they were seeking for a favourable 
situation. Their movements are more rapid than those of adults. 
They appear to inspect, as it were, with their antennae, the sur- 
face they travel over. The movements of the antennae are 
generally alternative, and, if the comparison may be pardoned, 
are not unlike the two sticks of a blind man, which he uses to 
explore the ground he is about to tread. 

" After a few days of this errant life, the young insects seem to 
fix upon a spot to settle in. Most frequently this is a fissure in 
the bark of a vine, where their suckers can be easily plunged into 
the cellular tissue, full of saccharine matter. If you make a 
fresh wound on the root by cutting off a little piece of the bark, 
you may see the pucerons range themselves in rows around the 
wound, and, once fixed, they apply to the root their antennae, 
which appear like two small divergent horns. At this period of 
their life, about the 13th or 14th day after their birth, they are 
more or less sedentary ; but they change their places if a new 
wound is made on the root, which promises a fresh supply of 
food. . 

" What sense is this which directs these subterraneous pucerons 
towards the place which is most suitable for them ? It cannot 
be sight, as their eyes are merely coloured spots, and they creep 
as if they were blind. It cannot be hearing, because they seek 
no prey but a vegetable tissue. It is probably the sense of 
smelling ; and one may well ask if the nuclei which appear 
enshrined in the last articulations of the antennae are not the 
organs of this function, the seat of which has been so much dis- 



THE GRAPE VINE. 121 

puted? Among these non- adult insects, attached by their 
suckers to the vine -root, are seen, here and there, some of 
middle size. Their colour is a deeper orange, the abdomen 
shorter and more squarely formed. These individuals are more 
sedentary than the others. I have sometimes imagined they 
might be wingless (apterous) males of the species ; but as nothing 
has happened to confirm this very problematical hypothesis, and 
as I have seen undoubted females much resembling these ex- 
amples in colour and form, I incline to the belief that there are 
no sexual differences among them. A kind of double moult pre- 
cedes the adult state. The first takes place shortly after birth, 
the second after laying-time. Some uncertainty, however, hangs 
over the number of these changes, as the cast-off skins are often 
found mixed up with groups of pucerons of different ages, and 
it is difficult to distinguish them. On the morbid tuberosities 
of the fibrous vine-roots, or on the offshoots of the roots, the 
pucerons (perhaps better nourished) seem to pass more quickly 
through the different phases I have described ; but excepting 
that their colour is paler, they present no marked difference. 

" The winged form of the Phylloxera might easily be taken for 
a separate species. The rare specimens which I have seen have 
all come from the pucerons nourished on the newly - attacked 
vine-radicles. In their infant (or it might be called their larva) 
state they resemble those which I have suggested may be males, 
but the buckler soon becomes more strongly marked than in these 
last ; and a kind of band seems distinctly to define the separation 
between this and the abdomen. The sheaths of the wings, trian- 
gular-shaped and of a greyish colour, appear on both sides of the 
buckler. It is easy to predict the advent of a winged insect from 
this chrysalis. When one of these nymphae is seen to quit its 
place and to crawl over the root, or up the side of the bottle where 
it may have been put, its transformation is near. Soon, instead 
of a sort of pupa, a beautiful little fly appears, whose two pairs of 
wings, crossed horizontally, are much larger than its body. 

" It is impossible to doubt the identity of this insect with the 
puceron which formed one of the swarm on the vine-root. The 
details of the structure of certain organs the antennae, claws, 
tarsi, and suckers establish their identity. 

" The horizontal position of the wings completely distinguishes 
the Phylloxera from the true aphis, whose wings are always more 
or less inclined upwards. The two larger wings, obliquely oboval 



122 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

and cuniform, have a lineal areole on the larger basilary half of 
their outer edge ; and this is enclosed in an interior ' nervure,' 
which answers, I suppose, to the radial muscle. One single ob- 
lique nervure (or corneous division) is detached from this last, and 
reaches to the inner edge. Two other lines start from the end of 
the wing, and, becoming narrower as they proceed, advance to- 
wards the oblique nervure, but end before reaching it. These are 
not, perhaps, nervures, but rather folds, for I have observed them 
absent. 

" The inferior wings, both narrower and much shorter, have a 
marginal nervure running from the base to the middle, but it 
loses itself in a gentle protuberance, which the wing shows in this 
place ; a radial nervure runs parallel to the first, and disappears 
before it reaches the same spot. 

"The eyes, black and (relatively) very large, are irregularly 
globular, with marked conical nipples ; their surface is gran- 
ular, but a pointed depression is observed in the centre of each 
glandule. A round eye-shaped spot occupies the centre of the 
forehead. 

" Among fifteen winged specimens of the Phylloxera which have 
come under my notice, not one has presented any sexual differ- 
ence. Almost all of them laid two or three eggs, and their death 
(which happened soon after) may have been caused by their 
imprisonment in the bottles. Their eggs resembled those of the 
wingless Phylloxera, and though they were only two or three in 
number, they completely filled the abdomen of the mother. 
They were easily seen by placing the insect under the microscope. 
I do not know how long the eggs remain before they are hatched, 
or if they always, produce the winged form of the insect. It is 
probable that these winged individuals serve for the transporta- 
tion of this insect plague to a distance ; not that their wings 
would serve them for a rapid flight they are too inactive, they 
move them very little, and in rising from the ground their hori- 
zontal position is preserved. My observations were, however, 
made under very unfavourable conditions, the insect being in a 
state of captivity ; but I suppose that even in a natural state the 
wind is the principal agent for the dispersion of the Phylloxera, as 
it is for many of the insect tribe. In any case, the discovery of 
this form of the Phylloxera provided with wings, and evidently 
fitted for an aerial life, is sufficient to explain the hitherto embar- 
rassing fact of the rapid spread of this vine-plague. As to the 



THE GRAPE VINE. 123 

spread of the disease from one vine to another, the wingless 
pucerons may suffice for this, as, grouped in great numbers about 
the lower part of unhealthy vine-stems, they might easily attack 
the vines nearest them, even if they be healthy. It may be asked, 
in what manner these insects manage to travel from one vine- 
stock to another, and how they contrive to reach the fibrous roots 
of the newly-attacked stocks ? Do they burrow under the soil, 
or do they not rather travel along the surface of the earth under 
cover of the darkness and coolness of night, and then, traversing 
the fissures in the bark, arrive in this manner at the extremities 
of the roots ? This conjecture is a probable one, and the follow- 
ing experiment supports it : 

" In a case 1 yard long I placed some garden-soil from Mont- 
pelier, a place entirely free from the Phylloxera. In this earth I 
carefully laid some pieces of vine-cane infested with wingless 
pucerons. I placed a hand-glass over each cane, and slightly 
raised the glass on one side in order to allow the insect to creep 
out. At three centimetres' distance from the pieces of cane I 
put some fragments of root from a healthy vine, on which I 
had made fresh wounds. In twelve hours the following results 
were obtained : Three pucerons had found their way from one 
of the vine-canes to the nearest piece of vine-root. Some days 
after, twenty young pucerons occupied the same fragment. A 
few insects were to be found on the other fragments. One piece 
of root had attracted none, but the vine-cane nearest to it had 
very few insects upon it which were capable of changing their 
places. 

" A similar experiment has been made by M. Frederic Leydier 
at the farm of Lancieux, near Sigondas (a part of the country 
already infested by the Phylloxera), and by another person near 
Sorgues. The results of these experiments have not been satis- 
factory ; but this does not prove that, under other conditions, 
or with a greater amount of perseverance, they might not have 
been successful. It is fortunate that this new enemy to the vine 
attacks it (in the first instance) at the base of the stem, and not 
underground at the fibres. As it is, a thorough dressing of the 
bottom of the stem with coal-tar will probably prove an insur- 
mountable obstacle to the progress of this destructive insect ; but 
were the case otherwise, it would be very difficult to get down 
deep enough to reach an enemy so well protected by the depth of 
the soil." 



124 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

Eegarding the appearance of the insect, and the 
rapidity with which it multiplies and devours its prey, 
this writer's observations are correct ; but I differ to 
some extent on what the writer propounds as to its 
mode of attack. I refer to the article in question for 
the entomology of this little devourer, and will now 
detail some of my observations as to its effects, its 
mode of attack, and circumstances which favour its 
spread, &c. I may here state that not one of the ob- 
servations to which I refer has been intrusted only to 
one pair of eyes, and that all which I shall relate has 
been corroborated by two and sometimes more observers. 
The insect is so minute less than a cheese-mite that 
all observations have to be microscopic. 

The first warning that some evil was present in a 
vinery erected in the autumn of 1869, and planted in 
1870, was, that two vines at the end of the house, 
which grew with great and satisfactory vigour all 
through 1870 and up to the midsummer of 1871, 
soon after the latter date began to flag. The leaves 
got prematurely yellow, and dropped off. Not for a 
moment suspecting the real cause, I was much puzzled 
at the occurrence, it being entirely new in my experi- 
ence. But as the effect was so limited in its extent, 
and the two vines being supernumeraries, and heavily 
cropped, the impression wore off, and no minute in- 
vestigation took place. In the spring of 1872, most 
of the supernumeraries that bore heavily in 1871 were 
removed, and the whole of the permanent vines from 
one end of the house to the other broke with equal 
vigour, each shoot being literally packed at the points 
with fruit. All seemed to go right till the young 
growths were about 3 inches long, and the stored-up 
sap was exhausted. Then all the vines at one end of 



THE GRAPE VINE. 125 

the vinery, extending to the middle of it, called a halt, 
and those at the opposite end bounded on their way, 
running out their bunches as might have been ex- 
pected. The affected half " spindled away " like 
straws, and the bunches never ran out properly. The 
roots were of course instantly examined, and all the 
most fibry and active parts of them were found in a 
peculiar half-dead-looking condition. Not even then 
suspecting Phylloxera as a cause, the occurrence was a 
puzzle, and some application was suspected, though I 
knew of nothing but pure river- water and a little soap 
that had been used in washing the wood-work and 
glass. Notches or incisions were then cut in the boles 
of the vines, above the surface of the soil, and a little 
fresh loam put round them. There they soon emitted 
strong bunches of roots ; and they made a tremendous 
struggle for life, and sent their leaders to the top of 
a long rafter, but woefully weak compared to those at 
the other end of the house, and the bunches were like 
black currants comparatively. 

As time went on, galls were discovered on the 
under sides of the leaves at the affected end of the 
vinery, and this soon revealed the foe that had been 
carrying on its work of destruction in ambush at the 
roots, and on which it was found in myriads. The 
invader spread towards the other end of the house as 
steadily and regularly as a fire would progress ; and 
each vine it attacked on its onward march drooped, 
and shed its leaves suddenly and prematurely. Before 
it got to the extreme end of the vinery, the vines 
there had brought to maturity a fine crop of large 
bunches, and were showing no signs of distress ; but 
and this will give some idea of the rapidity with 
which the work of destruction is effected in a month 



126 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

afterwards some of the vines were literally dead, not 
having a live root, and to save the grapes they had to 
be cut wholesale. 

In the same range, and adjoining this house, is a 
Muscat-house, the vines in which ripened a fine crop 
of grapes to a beautiful golden colour ; and on two 
grafts of Gros Guillaume there were ten bunches, 
weighing from 6 to 8 Ib. each. It was not till October 
that the presence of the Phylloxera was suspected 
here, and by the end of November the roots of the 
whole of these vines were literally covered with it 
so much so that, looked at with the naked eye, it 
imparted its own colour to the roots ; and viewed 
through a microscope, the insects were seen to be 
clustered on the top of each other like miniature 
swarms of bees, so rapidly had they spread and 
multiplied. 

So much for the destructive ability of Phylloxera. 
I will now briefly refer to the most important of my 
observations regarding its habits, &c. In each gall, 
formed on some of the vines on the under sides of the 
leaves, there was generally one full-grown insect, and 
clustered round it, just as described by M. Planchon 
eight or nine eggs. The mature insect is of a yellow- 
ish-brown colour; and, examined through a powerful 
microscope, is so transparent that the eggs can be seen 
in its inside. The eggs are equally transparent, and 
both are very easily destroyed. The full-grown insect 
appears to be made of a thin transparent skin, easily 
broken, with a thin transparent viscid matter internally. 
The way into the breeding-galls is from the upper 
side of the leaf. I have never been able to discover 
any above ground, except those in the galls ; and 
have seen only one of the insects with wings, which 



THE GRAPE VINE. 

is supposed to be the male, and that was on the under 
side of a leaf, and appeared in a semi-dormant state. 
Underground, they breed and spread with marvellous 
rapidity on the roots, and cover them so densely 
that they impart to them their own colour. They 
effect the destruction of the vine by eating all the 
bark off the roots, and burrowing into the second coat- 
ing of the young roots ; and after destroying that, they 
seem to move on to fresh roots, for I have not in one 
single instance found an insect on a root after it has 
been peeled and begun to decay. Contrary to the 
French theory that it attacks the roots at the neck of 
the vine, and works downwards towards the more 
young and fibry roots, it has been invariably found 
that they have begun at the points of the roots, and 
devoured upwards towards the bole of the vine. 

It is also quite evident that, like red-spider on the 
leaves, it thrives best in a dryish warm soil. Having 
decided to thoroughly stamp the pest out by removing 
the whole border, I did not as usual cover the outside 
border with wooden shutters early in October; and, 
owing to the enormous rainfall of the autumn, the 
soil was of course unusually moist and cold outside. 
The most careful examination of the roots outside in 
this cold damp medium did not lead to the discovery 
of an insect on the roots up to the arches of the front 
of the house. The pest, however, was found in swarms 
on the roots to the very point at which they left the 
protection of the stone- work, where the soil was much 
drier, and here there was an abrupt limit to their 
extension. On the same roots not one was found 
beyond the arch, in which case it is clear they had 
worked from the inside along the roots, but in any 
case did not advance into the damp soil, proving that 



128 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

the insect does not like cold and wet. Prompted by 
this observation, some pieces of roots literally covered 
with the insects were steeped in clean soft water, and 
they were all dead in from forty-eight to sixty hours. 
So that any one receiving vines who has any dread of 
this pest, would do well to steep them in a tank for 
four or five days. I also found that three hours' 
exposure to 4 or 6 frost effectually destroys it ; and 
pieces of fresh roots densely covered with it were left 
exposed to the air in the vinery, and in two days 
they were all dried up and dead. Roots were also 
done up in brown paper without any soil, and they 
died in the same space x>f time ; in fact, seemed to 
evaporate. A few drops of carbolic acid in a wine- 
glassful of water proved instant death to them, and a 
very weak solution of Condy's fluid had the same 
effect. In fact, everything that I have learned of this 
insect goes to prove that it is very easily killed when 
it can be got at. 

Numerous experiments have been tried to see if it 
would attack or live on other fruit-trees besides the 
vine. A currant-bush and a fig were planted among 
the roots of the vines on which the insect was in 
legions. These fruits were allowed to remain in the 
vinery for weeks, and they pushed out quantities of 
young rootlets into the very centre of the pests' 
strongest hold, but not one insect could be found 
adhering to either the currant or the fig. A young 
vine planted where the insect was not considered so 
numerous was attacked by it in legions. Pieces of 
vine - roots swarming with the pest were laid on a 
board, and around them and touching them were 
placed fresh pieces of the roots of the peach, the 
cherry, the pear, the gooseberry, black currant, and 



THE GRAPE VINE. 1 29 

the plum. The whole were covered with some soil, 
and a large bell-glass placed over them, and left for 
fourteen days : at the end of that time they were all 
examined minutely through the microscope, but not 
one insect had gone on to the roots of these fruits. 
On to a piece of vine-root that was put along with 
them in a clean state they did go. These experiments 
go to prove that Phylloxera does not care so much 
for any of these fruits as it does for the vine. On 
pieces of vine-roots laid upon the same board not 
covered with soil, but merely covered with a bell- 
glass the insect was found quite shrivelled up and 
dead. Tobacco-smoke, however strong, does not seem 
to affect it ; for I placed the insect in a glass vessel 
and filled it as full of tobacco-smoke as it could be, 
but it remained alive. 

There can be no doubt that there are scores of 
decoctions that will kill this insect such as salt, 
hellebore, &c. : but the difficulty to overcome lies in 
the depth of soil to be so acted on; for if a few insects 
are left, the enemy remains in possession of the field, 
and there can be no certainty of stamping it out in 
this way. I believe that to submerge the whole 
border and vines in clean water would destroy the 
insect ; but what of the eggs or larvae ? Mr Dunn, of 
Dalkeith Gardens, when at Powerscourt, in Ireland, 
got rid of it in some vineries there by" lifting and 
washing the roots of the vines, and merely picking 
all the roots out of the soil, and mixing dry soot and 
caustic lime with the old soil, and replanting the 
vines. But that process leaves some risks in the way 
of stamping it out ; and I know of a place in England 
where even more radical means failed. Therefore it 
must be admitted that the most certain way of 



130 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

stamping out this destroyer is to burn the vines, 
remove right away all the soil, well salt the site of 
the border, and wash and paint everything connected 
with the vinery before fresh soil is put into it. This 
is the process that I have adopted ; and I think, in 
the interests of grape -growing, all who have this pest 
in their vineries should, for their own sake and that 
of others, pursue the more certain course. 

DISEASES TO WHICH VINES ARE SUBJECT. 

Shanking. This disease has derived its name from 
its being an affection of the " shanks " or stalks of the 
berries. Just as the berries begin to colour and 
ripen, their stalks shrivel up, and become hard and 
wiry in fact, die. The ripening process is thus 
arrested, the berries ferment, become exceedingly sour, 
and eventually drop off the shrivelled stalks, unless 
they are cut off the bunch. Generally speaking, it is 
most inveterate in straggling bunches, the berries of 
which have long slender stalks, and which betoken a 
debilitated state of the vine. Grape-growers have dif- 
fered widely as to the cause of shanking. Some have 
attributed its presence to the vines being in cold, wet 
borders ; .others, to the borders being too dry ; others, 
again, have blamed heavy cropping, &c. &c. Doubtless 
all these, or any other conditions that have a tendency 
to impair the constitution of the vine, may have some- 
thing to do with the malady. But my own experience 
leads me to believe that a cold, adhesive, wet border- 
is the most general producer of it ; and I agree with 
that theory of the disease which my brother was the 
first to propound in his 'Practical Treatise on the 
Vine/ and from which I quote the following passage : 



THE GRAPE VINE. 13 f 

" I will describe the circumstances under which shank- 
ing is most generally met with. The most frequent 
of these is when the roots of the vine have descended 
into a cold wet subsoil ; but it is also met with where 
the roots are not down in the subsoil, but where they 
are growing vigorously, towards autumn especially, 
in a rich, and what many would term a well-made 
border, where they receive plenty of liquid manure, 
where the foliage in the house is fine, the wood strong, 
and the young roots, if sought for, will be found 
pushing along in the rich earth in September, like 
the points of a goose's quill. . ,- ..., I must now 
describe what I consider took place in the case on 
hand. The vines made great strong young roots in 
this rich soil late in autumn ; they were not short, 
branching, fibry roots, but soft, like the roots of some 
bulb ; and by the time the action of the leaves had 
ceased, these roots were anything but ripe, and they 
all perished during the winter rains, back to the old 
stem roots from which they sprang. The vines, never- 
theless, have a given amount of stored-up sap in them 
though they have lost their active roots, and they 
are pruned and started, say, the following February. 
While this stored-up sap lasts, they grow vigorously 
enough, but a period arrives when it is exhausted ; 
and the new sap comes but slowly, for the old roots 
that remain are just beginning, through- the action of 
the foliage, to start into life a fresh set of young roots, 
that are able as yet to supply but little. This takes 
place when the berry is passing through the stoning 
period always a crisis with fruit of any kind and 
the consequence is a thorough failure of the crop from 
shanking, either resulting directly from want of proper 
nourishment at this important period, or from some 



132 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

other cause which springs from this want. The crop 
of fruit is lost as thus described, but the vines seem 
in good health, and they make strong roots towards 
autumn, again to share the fate of their predecessors ; 
and so the round goes on." 

Twenty-one years ago I took the management of a 
number of vineries, the vines in which corresponded 
exactly to the above description, and I renewed the 
whole of the borders, and planted them with young 
vines. On removing the old borders, they were found 
to consist of damp solid soil, without any portion of 
opening material, and all the drainage under them 
was a few inches of ordinary coal-ashes. I did not 
find a single young fibry root from one end of the 
range to the other at the time midwinter when the 
soil was removed. There was nothing to be seen but 
old, thick, brown-like roots, and it was no wonder that 
the grapes shanked most severely. Having shown the 
principal cause of shanking, the remedy can be antici- 
pated. Vines under such circumstances must either 
be discarded altogether, or lifted out of the wet re- 
tentive border and planted in soil congenial to them. 
For this process I refer to what has been said on ren- 
ovating exhausted vines, p. 105. Ample drainage, a 
free open soil, protecting the roots from winter rains, 
and a thorough ripening of the wood and roots in 
autumn, with moderate cropping, are the best preven- 
tives of shanking. 

Mildew. It is generally admitted that mildew is 
a very minute fungus, concerning the origin of which 
there is yet great diversity of opinion. It is, how- 
ever, a very formidable enemy to the vine, and if 
allowed to go on unmolested, it proves very destruc- 
tive in some instances. It can be easily prevented 



THE GRAPE VINE. 133 

and eradicated when it does make its appearance. 
An over-moist, cold, and stagnant atmosphere is the 
condition under which it generally attacks the vines, 
and I am not aware that it ever appears when there 
is a circulation of moderately dry and sufficiently 
warm air. 

I never had experience of it but once, and that was 
during a season of dull, damp weather, in a vinery 
considerably below the surrounding ground-level. The 
water was coming into the floor of the house at the 
foundations, and the heating apparatus was not suffi- 
ciently powerful to keep up the heat properly. The 
disease first made its appearance over an open cistern 
of water. I at once had the cistern covered up, and the 
house kept as dry and warm as possible. On the first 
fine afternoon I mixed some flower of sulphur in a 
potful of water, and syringed the whole of the vines 
with it ; this left the flower of sulphur adhering to the 
leaves when they dried. At the same time I coated 
the pipes with sulphur, and aired freely. This resulted 
in completely arresting the mildew ; and it disappeared 
without any injury to the fruit, and not a speck of it 
has appeared on the vines since. There is no doubt 
about sulphur being a specific for mildew. A good 
syringing or two brings off all the sulphur when the 
malady is fairly subdued. A damp, cold, stagnant 
atmosphere should therefore be avoided, otherwise mil- 
dew is more likely, if it be a wet sunless season, to 
prove troublesome. 

Rust. I do not know whether this should come 
under the category of diseases, as it cannot be said 
that it attacks the vine as a disease is understood to 
attack. There are many causes assigned for this dis- 
figuration of the berries, such as handling them with 



134 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

greasy hands, touching them with the hair of the head 
while thinning them, cold currents of air when the 
vines are young, and overmuch moisture in the air. I 
have no recollection of being conscious that rust was 
produced by any of these causes, though I think too 
much moisture in the atmosphere as likely to do so 
as any of them, seeing that it has an effect on the 
leaves somewhat allied to rust on the berries. The 
only case of rust worth the name that ever took place 
in my own experience, was in a very narrow vinery, 
where, to keep up the heat, hard firing had to be 
resorted to. Eed- spider under these circumstances 
made its appearance, and I had the pipes covered with 
sulphur to check the spider. The grapes were then 
almost ready to thin : in two or three days after the 
sulphuring process, the bunches all over the house 
were more or less blackened. As the berries grew 
the rusting became more apparent. Whatever else 
will produce rust, sulphuring hot pipes while the 
grapes are young will produce it. There is no cure 
for it after it is produced that I know of. The best 
thing to do when it occurs before the grapes are 
thinned, is not to be in a hurry to thin, and to re- 
move the bunches and berries most affected. 

Excrescence on the under sides of the leaves. This 
consists of a mass of watery-like excrescences resem- 
bling small green boils or blisters, thickly set on the 
under sides of the leaves. They are produced by a 
warm atmosphere too highly charged with moisture in 
conjunction with too little ventilation. I have seen 
some very inveterate cases of it this very damp sunless 
season (1872), and, as editor of the 'Gardener,' have 
had numerous examples of it sent for inspection. It 
can be prevented by not allowing too much moisture 



THE GRAPE VINE. 135 

in the air, and arrested in its progress by the same 
means ; but once the excrescences are formed, I do 
not know of a cure. 

Scalding. This affection seems peculiar to certain 
varieties of grapes, and to Lady Downes's seedling in 
particular, just as it approaches the stoning stage. I 
have frequently had berries sent to me so affected. 
One side of the berry looks as if it had been suddenly 
scalded with hot water, and the part affected collapses 
and decays. It is caused by heat, and the only way 
to prevent it is to keep the vinery well ventilated and 
cool by opening both the top and bottom lights. When 
the grapes begin to swell after stoning, there is no 
further fear of its appearing. 



136 



THE PEACH AND NECTAEINE. 



THESE two fruits are classed together. They not only 
belong to the same genus (Amygdalus), but the same 
species (persica) includes them both. The nectarine 
differs from the peach in being somewhat less, and in 
having a smooth skin, the skin of the peach being 
downy. There have been instances of their being both 
found on the same branch, and single fruits have been 
found with the skin of the peach on one side and that 
of the nectarine on the other. They may each be 
arranged under two classes viz., the free-stone peaches 
and nectarines, the flesh of which separates readily 
from the stone and skin ; and the cling-stones, which 
have a firmer flesh adhering to both the stone and the 
skin. The cultivation required by the peach applies 
also to the nectarine. 

There is considerable difference of opinion among 
botanists as to the native country of the peach. Persia 
has been considered by some to have been the place of 
its origin. "Decandolle is, however, of opinion that 
China is the native country of the peach. His reasons 
are, that if it had originally existed in Persia or Ar- 
menia, the knowledge and culture of so delicious a 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. 137 

fruit would have spread sooner into Asia Minor and 
Greece. The expedition of Alexander is probably what 
made it known to Theophrastus, B.C. 322, who speaks 
of it as a Persian fruit. . . . Admitting this to be 
the country, how can it be explained that neither the 
early Greeks, nor the Hebrews, nor the people who 
speak Sanscrit, and who have all sprung from the upper 
region of the Euphrates, had grown the peach-tree ? 
On the contrary, it is very probable that the stones of 
a fruit-tree cultivated from all antiquity in China may 
have been carried across the mountains from the centre 
of Asia into Cashmere or Bokhara and Persia. . . . 
The cultivation of the peach-tree, once established at 
this point, would easily extend, on one side towards 
the west, and on the other by Cabul towards the north 
of India. In support of the supposition of a Chinese 
origin, it may be added that the peach was introduced 
from China into Cochin China, and that the Japanese 
call it by the Chinese name Too. The peach is men- 
tioned in the books of Confucius, fifth century before 
the Christian era ; and the antiquity of the knowledge 
of the fruit in China is further proved by the represen- 
tations of it on sculpture and on porcelain. The above 
are some of the arguments adduced by Decandolle 
against the commonly received opinion that the peach 
originated in Persia." l 

The peach is very extensively and well cultivated 
in China. In America it is grown in great abundance, 
and is extensively used for making peach-brandy; and 
in some of the States it is an important article of food 
in a dried state. It is cultivated as a common standard 
orchard- tree. The hot summers of the Western World 
ripen the wood sufficiently to enable it to bear with 

1 Treasury of Botany. 



138 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

impunity the intense frosts of winter. The Americans 
raise their trees from stones, and though they grow 
rapidly into a bearing condition, they are not long- 
lived. It is not uncommon to find orchards of from 
10,000 to 20,000 trees belonging to one individual. 
In the comparatively mild climate of Britain, the 
peach, even on south walls, often suffers severely from 
frost. This is easily accounted for by the imperfect 
ripening of the wood in our comparatively dull and 
wet summers. The peach was introduced into this 
country more than 200 years ago, when most likely 
it was brought from France, where it had been culti- 
vated a long time before that period. In the south of 
France it succeeds as a common standard ; but in the 
north it requires to be grown against walls. In Britain 
it succeeds outdoors only against walls with south 
aspects ; but even under such favourable conditions, 
outdoor crops are very uncertain over the greater part 
of the kingdom. It is only under glass that good 
annual crops can be produced. The peach season can, 
by early forcing and growing it in cool houses, be 
extended to seven months of the year. I have for 
years in succession gathered ripe peaches the last week 
of April, and continued to do so till the last week of 
October. 

PEACH-HOUSE FOR EARLY FORCING. 

It is needless to occupy time and space with argu- 
ments to show that for the early forcing of the peach 
a lean-to house, similar to that recommended for the 
early forcing of the vine, is the best. In all respects 
it may be the same except in the trellis-work for 
training the trees to ; and even in this respect the 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE, 139 

arrangement may be the same, except that the roof 
should be wired more closely for peaches than for 
vines. However, in those days of clear glass, making 
hothouses much lighter than they could be made in 
time past, I would recommend the arranging of the 
trees as shown in fig. 14. The curved trellis in the 
centre of the house, with room between it and the 
front of the house, gives great convenience and facility 
for attending in every way to the trees. At the same 
time, the greater part of the back wall can be covered 
also, thus giving a larger fruit-bearing surface than, 
when the trees are trained closely up all the way 
under the roof. The arrangement shown in fig. 14 
gives a greater variety of position and temperature, 
and consequently a longer succession of ripe fruit. 
The quantity of pipes for peach-forcing need scarcely 
be so much as for the vine. Four rows of 4-inch 
pipes along the front and both ends of a lean-to house 
16 feet wide, will be sufficient. A steaming -tray 
should also be attached to the pipes. 

I have ripened peaches in April in houses not more 
than 8 feet wide mere glass cases ; but such small 
houses are so very easily influenced by the fluctuations 
of the weather, that they should never be adopted. 
And a house of the dimensions of fig. 14, I consider 
not too large. But this is a matter that admits of 
modification, according to circumstances. 

PEACH-HOUSE WHEN RIPE PEACHES ARE NOT REQUIRED 
BEFORE JULY. 

When ripe peaches are not required before July, 
the span -roofed form of house, the same as has been 
recommended for late vineries, p. 58, is the best. It 



140 



FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 




THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. 141 

should, of course, run north and south. The span- 
roofed form affords a great amount of training surface, 
and gets the sun morning, noon, and evening. The 
wires should be fixed at 16 inches from the glass, and 
7 inches apart. In span -roofed houses the whole 
surface of glass from the bottom of the front lights 
upwards is available for being furnished with bearing 
wood, as it gets ample light. For heating such houses 
when, say, 60 feet long by 20 feet wide, there should 
be at least four rows of 4 -inch pipes round each side 
and both ends. There cannot be a greater mistake 
than that of under-heating with either pipes or boiler- 
power. It is much safer and more economical to err 
on the side of having too much than too little. It 
saves fire, and keeps up the required temperature 
without violently heating the pipes. 

For late crops to be ripened without fire-heat, and 
when the object is to have peaches on to the end of 
October, the span-roofed form of peach-house is also 
best. At the same time, when an existing garden wall 
can be covered with a lean-to glass roof, it answers 
perfectly well. A house of this description say 11 
feet wide, with trees covering the whole back wall, 
and so far up the roof from the front as not to shade 
the trees on the back wall gives great space for 
peaches. There should be ample ventilation at front 
and top, kept constantly on after all danger from frost 
is over. I have gathered peaches Walburton Admir- 
able and Sea Eagle as late as the 24th October ; 
while earlier varieties in the same house were ripe in 
the middle of August. In a house of this description 
there should always be a flow and return pipe, to 
keep frost from the trees when in blossom. I have 



142 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

known peach -blossom destroyed in narrow lean-to 
peach-houses by severe spring frosts. And with the 
means of keeping frost out, the floor of the house is 
available for flower-garden plants. 

In all peach -houses ventilation should be amply 
provided for. In the case of very early forcing, when 
the crop is all gathered before the 1st of June, the 
top and bottom ventilation should be very abundant ; 
indeed it is a good plan to have the roof constructed 
so that the lights can be partly, if not wholly, removed 
for two or three months in the heat of summer. At 
all events, the ventilation should be amply sufficient 
to keep the house as cool as possible. The whole of 
the side lights of span-roofed houses should open, and 
the top ventilation be made so as to open to a con- 
siderable extent. In recommending the covering of 
existing peach-walls with glass, I am fully convinced 
that this will always be found satisfactory, inasmuch 
as without doing anything else to the peach-trees, if 
in other respects they are in moderate condition, the 
mere covering of them with glass will not only insure 
crops of peaches every year, but all blistering of the 
foliage, and most of the other ills which beset the 
peach in the greater number of the gardens of this 
country, will be got rid of. At Archerfield I had a 
peach-wall covered on which the trees formerly did 
very little good, and after being covered with a lean- 
to house, they speedily became healthy and vigorous, 
annually bearing great quantities of fine fruit. The 
same applies to the peach-wall at Dalkeith, and other 
places that could be named. 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. 143 

DRAINAGE, DEPTH, AND WIDTH OF BORDER. 

When the peach-house occupies a site where the 
soil and subsoil are uncongenial, such as poor sand, 
an irony gravel, or a cold stiff clay, the whole should 
be removed to the depth of 3 feet, and the entire site 
surfaced with a 3 -inch layer of concrete, giving it an 
even slope from the back wall to the front of the out- 
side border in the case of lean-to houses ; the slope 
to be from the middle of span-roofed houses to the 
front on each side, as shown in span-roofed vinery, 
ng. 7. Over the concrete run tile-drains at right 
angles across the border, 8 feet apart, into a main 
drain in front, below the level of the cross drains. 
Over these drains and the whole concrete lay 8 or 
9 inches deep of broken bricks, or coarse gravel with 
the sand sifted out of it, and blind the whole with 
finer gravel; over this lay a thin turf, grassy side 
downwards, and the site is ready for the soil. This 
leaves about 2J feet up to 3 inches above the front 
lintels or arches of the house for soil, and allowing 
for the necessary slope of the border, at the extremity 
or front it will be a little less than 2 feet. I am 
not an advocate for very shallow borders, when the 
drainage is as efficient as has been described. This 
matter should, however, be decided to a certain ex- 
tent by the amount of rain that falls in the locality. 
When very wet, the borders will be deep enough at 
2 feet. Their width should be regulated by the 
width of the house. A lean-to house 16 feet wide 
will require an outside border 16 feet wide, thus giv- 
ing 16 feet for each of the two sets of trees, the one 
set on the back wall and the other on the front trellis. 

Where the subsoil consists of a clean open gravel, 



144 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

concreting is not necessary, and the natural drainage 
being good, less artificial drainage will suffice. 



SOIL. 

It is an established fact that all stone-fruits can 
be grown to the greatest perfection in strong-holding 
soils. This fully applies to the peach, for it is on a 
strong calcareous loam, resting on a dry bottom, that 
it thrives best. The healthiest peach-trees on open 
walls we have ever seen were grown in a deep strong 
loam, resting on an immense depth of chalk ; and, 
generally speaking, the limestone districts of England 
produce the finest outdoor peaches and other stone- 
fruits. These facts apply with equal force to the cul- 
ture of the peach under glass. To produce the most 
healthy, fruitful, and long-lived trees, the best soil 
with which to form a peach-border consists of the top 
spit of some old pasture-land of a calcareous nature. 
It should be taken to the depth of 6 inches, inclusive 
of the short verdure and its roots peculiar to such 
land. When carted in, stack it into something like 
large potato-pits ; and if it can be allowed to lie for 
eight or nine months before being used, all the better. 
When it cannot be so arranged, it can be used as it 
comes from the field. Before it is wheeled into the 
border it should be roughly chopped up with a spade. 
Then add to every twelve cart-loads one of old lime- 
rubbish, one of charred wood, and 2 cwt. of half -inch 
boiled bones, and 1 cwt. of bone-meal to every 6 
cubic yards of the whole. Where neither lime-rub- 
bish nor charcoal are procurable, an equal proportion 
of charred soil can be substituted. These should all 
be well mixed together and wheeled into the border 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. 145 

when in a dry state, making it rather firm by beating 
it with the back of a fork, and allowing 2 or 3 inches 
for subsiding. As in the case of vine -borders, I 
recommend that only part of the border be made at 
first, the rest to be added in 3 or 4 feet widths, as 
the roots of the trees extend. In thus making a 
peach-border with fresh, turfy, strong loam, I do not 
advise the use of any manure except the few bones, 
which stimulate slightly over a long series of years. 
Common manure, either from the stable or cow-house, 
is undesirable at first, on account of the natural ten- 
dency of young peach-trees to make rank, unfruitful 
growths. The borders can be enriched in after-years, 
when the trees require it, by top-dressing and water- 
ing with manure- water. 

I would be sorry to convey, by these directions, 
the idea that very considerable success in peach- 
culture is not attainable except when fine fibry cal- 
careous loam can be had from an old pasture. No 
doubt the character of the soil in some gardens 
demands that all, or nearly all, the soil for the peach- 
border should be exchanged for some of a very differ- 
ent character. Where the natural soil is very sandy, 
or gravelly, and shallow, satisfactory results need not 
be expected unless fresh soil to some considerable 
extent be added to it, or wholly substituted. In this 
case, and when strong loam cannot be had, some 
strong soil, of a sound clayey nature, should be mixed 
with the light soil; and the parings of roadsides, with 
the herbage and roots, will also assist in making the 
soil more suitable. Where, on the other hand, the 
natural soil is a very strong, adhesive clay, its unsuit- 
ableness in that respect can be greatly remedied by 
burning a third of it and mixing it with the original, 

K 



146 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

and by also adding to it a portion of road-scrapings. 
Where the natural soil of a garden, however old, is 
of a loamy nature, tolerably deep, and resting on a 
dry healthy subsoil, and where the fine loam I have 
described cannot be had without great expense, I do 
not hesitate to say that very fair success in peach- 
culture is- attainable by merely trenching it, and 
mixing in bones and lime-rubbish according to the 
directions given. These remarks are intended to 
encourage those who cannot get the turfy soil that 
may be considered first-rate, but without which com- 
paratively good crops of peaches can be produced. 

VARIETIES FOR EARLY FORCING. 
PEACHES. 

Early Beatrice ) very early, but 
Early Louisa j rather small. 
Hale's Early taken as a whole, 



the best very early variety. 
Dr Hogg. 



Abec. 

Grosse Mignonne. 
Royal George. 
Violette Hative. 



Were I restricted to three varieties of well-known 
sorts for early forcing, I would select Eoyal George, 
Violette Hative, and Hale's Early : Early Louisa and 
Early Beatrice are too small to be popular ; all of 
which are frequently ripened in April, and bear and 

set freely. 

LATE PEACHES. 



Noblesse. 

Barrington. 

Osprey. 

Prince of Wales. 



Walburton Admirable. 
Sea Eagle. 
Lord Palmerston. 
Desse Tardive. 



These varieties are arranged in their order of ripen- 
ing. Besides these there are Thames Bank, Baldwin's 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. 147 

Late, Pride of Autumn, and Heath Cling-stone, said 
to be excellent late sorts that will hang till November. 
But were I restricted to three October peaches under 
glass, I would select Walburton Admirable, Sea Eagle, 
and Desse Tardive. In Scotland I have gathered the 
Admirables till 24th October in cool houses. 

NECTARINES FOR EARLY FORCING. 



Lord Napier. 
Hunt's Early Tawny. 
Elruge. 



Violette Hative. 

JBalgowan. 

Roman. 



I prefer the three first-named for early forcing, though 
all are good, and are also fine summer nectarines, in 
cooler houses. 



LATE NECTARINES. 



Albert Victor. 
Pitmaston Orange. 
Humboldt. 



Pine-Apple. 
Prince of Wales. 
Victoria very late. 



Of the early varieties, we should prefer, if only 
three sorts were required, Lord Napier, Hunt's Early 
Tawny, and Elruge ; and of the late varieties, Victoria, 
Humboldt, Pitmaston Orange, and Pine- Apple. 

PROPAGATION AND SELECTION OF TREES. 

The propagation of peaches and nectarines being 
a process almost entirely confined to nursery-gardens, 
it is not my intention to enter very elaborately into 
the details connected with it, for very few growers or 
forcers of the peach are ever called upon to propagate 
their own trees. For the following leading particu- 
lars connected with the subject I am indebted to Mr 
Pitman, who for half a century has been connected 
with the firm of Messrs Osborne & Sons, and who for 



148 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

the greater portion of that period has had the manage- 
ment of the fruit-tree department ; and all who are 
acquainted with the quality of his productions will 
accept him as an authority of the highest order in the 
propagation of peaches and nectarines. 

The stocks used for budding the peach and necta- 
rine on are the Mussel plum, and the Brompton or 
Mignonne plum. The stocks are raised by layering in 
the ordinary way. In preparing them for budding, 
they are dressed and cut to the height of about 2 feet, 
and planted out in autumn or early winter in lines. 
The following autumn they are taken up, assorted, 
and again planted in lines, but wider apart than the 
previous or first year. The succeeding summer, gen- 
erally from the middle of July to the middle of Au- 
gust, they are budded with the desired varieties of 
peaches and nectarines. The following summer the 
buds make their first growth, and the trees are termed 
" dwarf maidens." In the autumn of the same year 
they are taken up, root-pruned, and planted in lines 
4 feet apart, and 2 feet from plant to plant. Their 
growth, which generally consists of one strong shoot, 
is allowed to remain intact till the following spring. 

They are then cut back more or less closely, with 
the view of securing the production of one central 
and two lateral shoots right and left ; consequently 
not less than three buds must be left in the process 
of pruning. The tree is thus with its three growths 
termed a one-year-trained tree. In the spring of the 
following year each of these three shoots is cut back 
to from three to four buds from the base, so as to 
secure a tree with from 9 to 10 shoots. The tree 
having perfected the growth of these shoots, it is, as 
far as its nursery career is concerned, a full-trained 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. 149 

tree (fig. 15), and is ready for being transferred from 
the nursery-rows to the peach-house trellis. 

In the case of new varieties, the process of produc- 




ing trained trees is hastened by pinching the top of 
the first year's growth from the bud after it attains a 
length of two or three inches. This forces the pro- 
duction of young laterals, which are thinned out to a 
central growth, and two laterals, one on each side. 

In producing standard trees, the treatment of the 
stocks is precisely the same as that pursued in the 
case of dwarfs up to the time for budding, when, 
instead of using the peach or nectarine bud, a well- 
developed bud of some variety of plum is inserted at 
the base of the stock as close to the ground as prac- 
ticable for the sake of neatness in the future stem. 
The following year the stock is cut back to the bud, 
and all growths are rubbed off, excepting the produce 
of the inserted bud, which under favourable circum- 
stances rapidly attains the desired height. The fol- 
lowing year the stems are budded with the peaches 
and nectarines, and in due course transplanted on 
walls and fences. This double budding produces a 
much finer and earlier growth for forming standards 
with stems from 4 to 5 feet high. Long observation 
and experience have taught Mr Pitman that certain 



ISO FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

varieties thrive and grow much better on one stock 
than on another. The following varieties succeed 
best on the Mussel plum : 



PEACHES. 

Noblesse. 
Barrington. 
Royal George. 
Violette Hative. 
Late Admirable. 



NECTARINES. 

Elruge. 

Violette Hative. 
Red Roman. 
Pitmaston Orange. 
Hunt's Tawny. 



The Brompton or Mignonne is found the best stock 
for 



PEACHES. 

Gros Mignonne. 
Bellegarde. 
Stirling Castle. 
Royal Kensington. 
Royal Charlotte. 



NECTARINES. 

Balgowan. 
Imperatrice. 
Tanfield's Early. 
Due du Dutillys. 
Malta. 



The almond bears a greater affinity to the peach 
and nectarine than the plum; and doubtless, if our 
climate were more genial, it would, as in France, be 
the most suitable stock. As a proof of this, Mr Pit- 
man informs me that some peach-trees raised on the 
almond stock, that he had to do with, succeeded ad- 
mirably for a while, till an unfavourable season caused 
them to succumb; while the same varieties on the 
plum stock endured the ordeal unscathed. The 
French growers are also partial to the St Julien pear 
as a stock for peaches and nectarines. 

In selecting young trees, it is always most satis- 
factory, both to the nurseryman and the buyer, that 
the latter go to the nursery and choose for himself. 
Avoid trees that have stood long in the nursery- 
rows, and that have been frequently cut hard back, 
and choose those having from eight to ten strong, 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. 151 

well-ripened shoots. See that the union with the 
stock is perfect and free from gumming, and the stem 
healthy and growing -like, having no sign of being 
bark-bound. 

PLANTING. 

The border and trees being in readiness, the opera- 
tion of planting is a very simple one. The first thing 
to decide is the distance at which the trees are to be 
planted. I am averse to thick planting for permanent 
trees. To restrict a peach-tree planted in a good 
peach-border is very unadvisable. They should have 
plenty of room to develop themselves. For a peach- 
house wall 36 feet long, two standard trees on the 
back are quite sufficient, thus planting them 9 feet 
from each end of the house. On the front trellis 
other two dwarfs are enough. Should it be an object 
to get as much fruit as possible in a short time, a tem- 
porary tree may be planted, one between the two per- 
manent ones and one at each end, to be removed as 
the two permanent trees require the space. In the 
case of the front trellis, the temporary trees should be 
standards so as to clothe the upper part of the trellis 
for the time being. Before planting them, carefully 
examine the roots, and shorten back a little any that 
are gross and strong, and cut away all bruised or 
broken parts. Turn back the soil sufficiently to allow 
the roots to be stretched fully and regularly out on the 
surface. Place the boles of the trees so that they will 
be three to four inches clear of the back wall and the 
front trellis-work, so that they may have plenty of 
room to swell without pressing on the wall or trellis. 
Cover the roots carefully with the finer portion of the 
soil to the depth of 6 inches, making it rather firm. 



152 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

Fix the tree loosely to the wall, and water the roots 
through a rose. 

The season I prefer for planting is autumn, say the 
beginning of November or end of October, when the 
leaves are dropping off the trees. Planting can, how- 
ever, be performed, and often is successful, from Octo- 
ber to April. In planting peach-houses, where healthy 
trees exist on the open walls, it is a good plan to lift 
some that are of considerable size, say planted five or 
six years, and transfer them to the peach-house. I 
have done this and got a good crop the same season. 
Every fibre should be carefully saved in the process, 
By this means a peach-house can be furnished with 
fruit without the loss of a season or a crop. 



PRUNING AND TRAINING. 

Many ways of training and pruning the peach and 
nectarine have been practised and recommended. 
French horticulturists especially have been very suc- 
cessful in training them in several ways characterised 
by regularity and neatness. The single - cordon as 
well as the multiciple-cordon systems are favourite 
modes of training in France. Modifications partaking 
more or less of the French systems have been prac- 
tised and recommended, especially by Seymour, in 
England. But the ordinary fan system of training 
is by far the most generally practised and liked. It 
is, especially under glass, the mode of training which 
the most successful forcers of the peach have adopted, 
and it is that which I recommend. Many grand old 
examples of peach-trees under glass are to be found 
in this country, which have all along been trained on 
the fan principle, and that are yet in fine bearing con- 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. 153 

dition, being well furnished from top to bottom with 
young bearing wood. Taking a young tree, fig. 15, 
which I have recommended for planting as the 
foundation of a fan-trained tree, different cultivators 
who are most in favour of this system of training 
would deal differently with the ten young growths 
with which it is furnished. Some would cut them 
all back again to within five or six buds of their base; 
others would not shorten them at all, but would let 
them start into growth with as many young shoots as 
could be tied to the trellis without crowding them. 
What I have practised and would recommend is a mean 
between these two. The two centre shoots I would 
shorten back to half their length, the other eight 
shoots to be merely topped back to solid, well-ripened 
wood. The cutting somewhat closely back of the two 
centre ones makes it certain that two or three good 
strong growths will start from near their base to pro- 
perly fill up the centre of the tree with leaders. Each 
of the other eight shoots should have all their buds 
removed by degrees, except one near the base, and 
one or two at equal distances between it and the lead- 
ing bud, according to the length of the shoots. Two 
buds to the left on the under side if the shoots are 
long enough to have room for three on the upper side, 
the buds on the one side to alternate in position with 
those on the other. These lateral growths, with the 
leader, are enough to lay a foundation to serve for the 
future full-grown tree. The lateral growths should be 
allowed to grow without being stopped. Should the 
leaders show signs of growing very vigorously at the 
expense of the side growths, stop them whenever they 
show such a tendency. This will cause them to make 
lateral growths freely, and equally balance the growth 



.\ 



154 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

of all the young shoots. This encouragement of lateral 
growths, especially on the young wood in the centre 
of the tree, gives sufficient to furnish the tree without 
having recourse to the undesirable practice of first 
allowing a few very strong leaders to monopolise the 
sap, and then to cut them down at the winter pruning. 
In this way much time is gained in covering a wall 
or trellis with bearing wood. 

A young tree thus managed on what may be termed 
a mean between the extension and the cutting-hard- 
back systems, produces a comparatively large well- 
furmshed tree the autumn after it is planted, and one 
which requires very little or no winter pruning before 
starting it into another year's growth. If the sum- 
mer disbudding and pinching of the first season's 
growth have been properly attended to, the tree 
will be so thoroughly furnished with young wood 
that all the pruning that should be done is simply 
to remove any shoots that would crowd the tree. 
The distance between the shoots should not be less 
than 3 or 4 inches. In February 1878, I planted 
a number of young peaches and nectarines in an 
orchard-house. In the autumn not a single shoot 
was shortened back, and at the close of their second 
year's growth the trees thoroughly furnished in many 
instances spaces of 18 feet by 13 feet, and a great 
many of them 16 feet by 12 feet, besides bearing 
a good crop the season after being planted. There 
are some magnificent trees at Brayton Hall, which Mr 
Hammond, the able gardener there, managed on the 
extension system, and consequently filled their allot- 
ted spaces and bore grand crops in half the time in 
which this could have been done by the old cutting- 
back system. 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. 



155 



After the trees have grown and covered the space 
allotted to each, the system of pruning must be 
directed so as to continually keep the whole tree 
regularly supplied with young fruit - bearing wood. 
With a view to this, of course the yearly removal of 
old wood in winter, and the laying in of a correspond- 
ing amount of young wood in summer, must be care- 
fully attended to. Fig. 16 gives an idea of what I 




FIG. 16. 



mean by this, and will serve to illustrate the pruning 
out of old wood and laying in the new. The shoots 
represented by the solid lines are those which bore 



156 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

fruit last summer, and those shown by the dotted lines, 
growing from the bases of the fruit-bearing wood, are 
those laid in in summer to bear the following season. 
In pruning such a tree, the last year's wood, shown by 
the solid lines, is cut off close to the young wood 
which is to supply the next year's crop. 

Some make a practice of cutting back the young 
bearing wood to two - thirds its length. I do not 
advocate this indiscriminately. Where the shoots are 
long and not well ripened, and the buds consequently 
weak, they should be shortened back to where the 
wood is firm, and always to a strong wood - bud. 
Peach-trees in a healthy condition have their buds 
in clusters of three a wood-bud in the centre, and a 
fruit-bud on each side of it ; and to such a cluster of 
buds they should always be cut when cut at all. 

Well-established trees that have borne heavy crops 
regularly, and especially those that have been forced 
early, generally make shorter and stronger growths, 
well studded with strong clusters of buds. In this 
case it is unadvisable to shorten them back at all. A 
watchful eye must always be kept on the lower por- 
tion of the tree, so that it is not allowed to get bare 
of young fruit-bearing growths. It need scarcely be 
said that, from the fact that it is the young wood that 
bears, the tendency is for it to be in greatest abun- 
dance at the top. 

The best guarantee against trees becoming bare of 
young bearing wood at their lowest parts, is to annu- 
ally cut back a few healthy young growths to 2 or 3 
eyes, and allow as many of these to bud and grow as 
may be required to keep up the supply of young wood. 
This is an indispensable necessity, from the fact that 
portions of old wood have annually to be removed 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. 157 

at the top of the tree. In practice, all other things 
being equal, there is little difficulty experienced in 
thus furnishing the lower portions of the tree with 
bearing wood. All cutting should be effected with 
a sharp thin knife ; and whenever it becomes neces- 
sary to remove an old limb, the wound should be 
painted solidly over with white paint. 

I have already referred to what is termed Seymour's 
system of training, from its having been first adopted 
at Carlton Hall, in Yorkshire, by a gardener of that 
name. By this system a tree of great regularity and 
neatness is formed. It differs from the fan system of 
training in there being no lateral growths' allowed on 
the lower sides of the leading branches. Fig. 1 7 will 
illustrate this mode of training. "The first step in 
starting a newly-planted maiden tree upon Seymour's 
system is to head the plant down to three eyes, each 
of which eyes will produce a shoot in summer : at 




FIG. 17. 

pruning-time head down the centre shoot of these to 
three eyes, to produce in the following summer three 
more shoots as before, leaving the side shoots always 
at full length. In spring all the buds on the lower 
sides of these side branches, and these from 9 to 12 



158 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

inches asunder, are rubbed off, leaving those only 
which proceed from the upper side of the branch. 
When the young wood has extended to the length of 
5 or 6 inches it is stopped, but the leading branches 
are not interfered with. Every year will produce a 
side shoot on each side of the tree, and the laterals 
that proceed from them at the distance we have 
stated, are at first laid in between them, but the 
following spring these are removed from the wall and 
trained up in the main side branches. By the 
autumn of the third year the number of laterals will 
be doubled on the two side branches first laid in, as 
a new lateral is sure to spring from the base of the 
one laid in the previous season, as well as one from 
its point. As to winter pruning in the fourth year, 
all the laterals of two years' growth, and which have 
already produced a crop of fruit, are to be removed 
entirely, and those of the previous summer's forma- 
tion are to be unfastened from the wall and laid upon 
the main leading side branches in the place of those 
cut out." l 

My objection to this otherwise neat and very sys- 
tematic mode of training is, in the first place, that 
it takes a much longer time to cover a given space of 
trellis or wall than it requires to do so on the fan 
system, when the needless and objectionable close- 
cutting-back system is not adhered to. Then, again, 
when any of the leading branches give way no 
uncommon thing in peach-trees a great gap in the 
tree is created, which it takes longer to make up than 
when a gap takes place in fan training. 

The time for pruning the peach under glass must 
be regulated by the time that forcing is commenced. 

1 Book of the Garden. 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. 159 

Generally speaking, it is best to defer pruning till the 
first signs of the swelling of the buds, especially in 
the case of the inexperienced, as then wood-buds and 
fruit -buds are easily distinguished. This of course 
refers to the shortening back of all young wood that 
requires it. 



DISBUDDING, OR SUMMER PRUNING. 

What is known by the term "disbudding" the peach, 
consists of the removal of all the buds while in a small 
state that are not required to grow into shoots, to 
furnish fruit-bearing wood for the following year. This 
operation should be begun early, as soon as the buds 
have started. They should not all be removed at once, 
but at three different intervals of time. At the first 
disbudding remove those which are termed by gar- 
deners fore-right buds that is, those that are on the 
front side of the shoots and that would grow at a right 
angle from the trellis and those which are situated 
on the opposite side of the shoot, thus leaving those 
that are right and left. In about twelve or fourteen 
days after this, about the half of those left should be 
removed at intervals along the shoot, always leaving 
the best-looking two buds near the base. The trees 
should be examined and finally disbudded in about a 
week after, removing all except the most promising 
bud near the base, which is to form the chief growth 
for next year's fruiting. On short stubby growths 
this bottom bud and the terminal one will be enough 
to leave. On longer shoots one or two intermediate 
ones may be left if there is room enough to tie them 
in without crowding the tree. But always give the 
preference to the lowest-placed buds. 



160 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

In removing the last of the superfluous buds, when 
they have got stronger than those taken off at the first 
and second disbuddings, a thin sharp knife should be 
used, as it makes a less and cleaner wound than when 
they are detached by the hand. The leading shoot, 
if not required to furnish the tree as in the case of 
young trees, should be stopped when it has grown one 
foot ; but allow the lateral growths for next year's 
fruiting to grow their full length, and keep them 
regularly tied to the trellis as they grow using for 
this purpose soft matting taking care not to tie too 
tightly, but leaving room sufficient for the wood to 
swell. 

The common error of tying in too many young 
growths should be avoided, as one of the greatest evils 
in peach-culture. It crowds the tree with wood that 
is not required, and prevents the sun and air from 
acting properly on the foliage, and the result is weak, 
unripened, and unfruitful wood. Whenever any given 
growth shows that it is going to grow much stronger 
than the rest, it should either be cut out altogether, 
or stopped, and restopped if necessary, to prevent its 
monopolising the sap that should go to the other parts 
of the tree. 

After the fruit are all gathered look carefully over 
the trees, and untie and cut out at once those shoots 
from which the fruit have been gathered, and which 
are not necessary for another year. This gives more 
room to the young wood required for the ensuing crop, 
and concentrates the energies of the tree on their 
maturation. It is not easy nor necessary thus to cut 
out all the wood that requires to be removed ; but the 
lessening of it leaves but little to do at the winter or 
early spring pruning, as the case may be, and it lets 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. l6l 

more air and light at the foliage and buds of the 
shoots that are left to furnish the next crop. 



THINNING THE FEUIT. 

All peach-trees that are vigorous and the wood of 
which has been well ripened, generally set a great 
many more fruit than are required, and therefore 
have to be thinned off. This operation should not be 
completed all at once, but gradually, and not finally 
till the fruit are stoned. As soon as the fruit have 
swollen sufficiently to burst and throw off their flowers, 
the first thinning should take place. Where the fruit 
have set in clusters of twos and threes, remove them 
all but the best -formed and largest fruit, those that 
are placed on the under sides of the shoots, and those 
that are very near to the wires, and that would not 
get room to swell if left. When the fruit have at- 
tained the size of marbles, a second thinning should 
take place, removing all the smallest ones, and those 
that are nearest the top and the bottom parts of the 
bearing shoot leaving the largest about the middle of 
them. Although I have never experienced very much 
dropping of the fruit in the process of stoning, it is 
always best to leave considerably more at the second 
thinning to be removed after they have completed the 
formation of the stones. Then the . final thinning 
should take place. The weight of crop must be 
regulated by several considerations : if the trees are 
young and show a tendency to make too strong a 
growth, then it is best to crop rather heavily, say a 
fruit to every 6 or 7 square inches of surface. The 
ratio of cropping should be graduated according to 
the vigour of the trees. Those which have covered a 

L 



M62 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

considerable allotted space, and that are in what may 
be termed good bearing condition, should not be taxed 
so heavily. If fine fruit are required, one to every 
,10 or 12 square inches is sufficient. Of course their 
^distribution may be unequal, and it is desirable that 
on the lower branches stretching more at a right 
angle with the stem the fruit should not be so thick 
as on the central parts of the trees, which have a 
tendency to become over vigorous at the expense of 
the lower ones. 

ROOT-PKUttlNG. 

I am averse to root-pruning the peach and nectarine, 
or any stone fruits, according to the fashion recom- 
mended by some, and have never found it necessary 
to cut away many of their roots after they were first 
planted. I have never found much difficulty in sub- 
duing any tendency that young trees have had to 
grow too grossly by pinching the shoots when grow- 
ing, and directing the energies of the tree to its other 
parts. I think the practice of continually cutting 
hard back and preventing the trees from making a 
more natural headway has much to do with gross 
shoots. Letting the young trees bear heavily, in con- 
junction with the training indicated above, is generally 
sufficient when the trees are planted in a loamy soil 
into which rank manures have not been introduced. 
However, cases do occur when the roots of some of 
the stronger-growing varieties have to be dealt with. 
Then I would recommend a trench to be taken out 
at a radius beyond where the roots have extended. 
Encroach carefully on the roots, removing all the soil 
but saving every possible rootlet close up to the 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. 163 

bole of the tree, or as far up as the check that is 
desirable would demand. Unless it be some roots 
very much out of proportion to the others, they should 
not be cut back, but be all carefully laid in the border 
again with some sound fresh loam under and over 
them, making the soil all firm about them again. 
This operation I prefer doing just as the leaves are 
nearly all dropping off. If done earlier, the wood is 
apt to shrivel instead of ripen. 



FORCING AND GENERAL MANAGEMENT. 

Time to commence forcing. The time when ripe 
peaches are required must, of course, regulate the 
time when forcing has to be commenced. As the 
peach and nectarine will not submit to hard forcing, 
especially in their earliest stages of progress, it takes 
about five and a half months to ripen a crop when 
forcing is commenced late in November. This may 
be termed very early forcing. On referring to my 
note-books, I find that trees started by being shut 
up without fire-heat for the first fourteen days on 
the 15th November, ripened their first dishes of fruit 
from the 24th to the 30th April. Those started in 
January and February take fourteen days less time, 
but the character of the season has much to do with 
the exact time required to produce ripe fruit. Un- 
less where there are several peach-houses such early 
forcing is not desirable, and if the trees are not in 
good condition it should never be attempted. From 
the beginning to the end of January is a good time 
to start the earliest house, where there are, say, 
three peach -houses, allowing the interval of a month 
between the starting of each house. These early 



1 64 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

houses, with a late one in which no fire-heat is used 
beyond what is necessary to protect the trees from 
frosts or to ripen the wood in autumn, keep up a 
long succession of peaches when the selection of va- 
rieties is made to this end. In the case of young 
or newly-planted trees that have not been accustomed 
to early forcing, February is sufficiently early to be- 
gin to force them the first year. The second they 
may be started a month earlier. By beginning a 
few weeks earlier every year, they can be worked 
round to start at any time within the limits of what 
is practicable, much more safely than by beginning 
them very early the first and second years. It may 
be said of plants and trees in this respect that " use 
is second nature ; " for unless violently pushed they 
will have their period of repose, and the peach most 
particularly should never be subject to hard forcing. 

DRESSING THE TREES AND BORDERS. 

Let it be supposed that the earliest trees have 
been pruned, and the woodwork and glass of the house 
thoroughly cleansed. If there has been any red- 
spider about the trees the previous season, let the 
whole of them be first washed by means of a hair- 
brush and soft water, in which about an ounce of 
soft-soap to every gallon has been mixed. After the 
trees are dry, coat them over with a mixture of 
sulphur, cow -dung, and soot, in equal proportions, 
and reduced to the consistency of thick paint with 
hot water. To a gallon of this add 2 oz. of soft- 
soap. In painting the trees over with this, care 
should be taken always to draw the brush upwards 
towards the points of the shoots, to prevent the pro- 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. 165 

minent buds from being rubbed off. I have often 
started peaches without this dressing, and only con- 
sider it necessary when the trees have been attacked 
by red-spider the previous season. In tying the trees, 
care must be taken to rub off as little of the dress- 
ing as possible. 

The surface-soil should be removed from the border 
to the depth of 2 inches, and replaced with pure 
fresh loam in the case of young vigorous trees in new 
borders. In the case of old trees that have borne 
heavily for a succession of years, remove the soil 
down to the first roots, and replace it with an equal 
amount of loam, with a third of horse-droppings or 
manure mixed with it. If the inside border is dry, 
give it a good soaking with tepid weak manure-water. 
Presuming that these operations have been attended 
to a fortnight before the house is to be shut up for 
forcing, still keep the house cool and well aired, but 
keep the trees dry, so that the dressing does not get 
washed off them. The outside border should always 
be protected from cold and wet at the same time by 
a covering of litter and leaves and a tarpauling, or 
other means, such as wooden shutters for throwing 
off drenching rains. This is supposing that forcing 
is begun before the end of February. 

TEMPERATURE. 

Unless the weather be frosty when the house is 
shut up, no more fire-heat should be applied than is 
necessary to keep the temperature from falling at 
any time below 45 at night. In mild weather it 
will necessarily range higher without fire-heat. After 
the house has been shut up a fortnight, firing in a 



1 66 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

regular way should commence, and the night tempera- 
ture be kept at 50, allowing it to sink a few degrees 
lower on very cold nights ; with a day temperature 
10 higher with sun. If a higher temperature be 
maintained at first, the trees are subject to start their 
wood-buds before the blossom-buds, and the blossom 
under such circumstances is sure to be weak, and 
likely to drop off before it expands. By the time the 
blossoms are open the night temperature should be 
gradually raised to 55, with a corresponding rise by 
day with sun. After the fruit are set, raise the 
temperature by degrees to 60 at night, and with sun 
it may safely run to 70 or 75 by day, according to 
the intensity of the sunshine. Until the fruit are 
stoned the night temperature should not exceed this. 
After they are stoned it may be raised to 65, and to 
80 with sun-heat by day. In the case of early forc- 
ing, of which I am now treating, I do not recommend 
a higher temperature for peaches than the last named 
not that there is any fear of the fruit dropping off 
with a higher temperature after the stoning process is 
past, but I have always found that the moderate rate 
of forcing produced finer peaches and wood than are 
attainable with more rapid forcing. Of course very 
much depends on the state of the external atmosphere, 
as every experienced forcer knows. With mild 
weather the temperature I have named may be ex- 
ceeded by a few degrees with impunity, even with 
advantage. On the other hand, in time of very 
severe frost, when hard firing is necessary to keep up 
the proper temperature, it is wisest to let the heat 
decline a few degrees. After a day of bright sun- 
shine, which more or less heats up all surfaces, the 
house can be shut up with a higher temperature, and 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. 1 67 

the heat husbanded, so that very moderate firing 
keeps the heat up in the fore part of the night higher 
than I have named, and under such circumstances 
there is no objection to this. 

Of course when forcing is commenced later in the 
season, and the trees are more easily excited, and pro- 
duce their blossom and young wood more strongly 
under the influence of increased light, the temperature 
may range with safety a few degrees higher. For in- 
stance, a house started in December, for which 50 
with fire - heat would be sufficient, might, if not 
started till far on in February, with more genial 
warmth, and more sun by day, be started at 55 with 
fire-heat, after the trees are moving naturally. In 
bright weather, early shutting up with sun - heat 
should always be preferred to hard firing without sun. 

VENTILATION. 

The peach dislikes a close, stagnant atmosphere, 
and should be as freely ventilated as circumstances 
will admit of all through the process of forcing. If 
the house is kept too close and moist before the 
blossom expands, such conditions are sure to produce 
weakly blossom, and also dispose the wood -buds to 
too much precede the blossom, always an evil to be 
guarded against. Therefore give air more or less daily, 
as weather permits, from the time the house is first 
shut up ; and when the blossom is open, air freely on 
all dry days, and leave a little on all night, but guard 
against currents of cold frosty air. Most early forcers 
of the peach will have observed that if cold gusts 
of frosty air have reached any part of the tree, at 
that particular part the process of setting has been 



1 68 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

the least satisfactory. While a circulation of dry 
warm air is desirable, it should be admitted in small 
quantities at many points, so as to prevent the blos- 
soms from being subjected to blasts of it. In the case 
of early forcing, front ventilation should not be applied, 
unless the air can first be warmed by some such means 
as that recommended in the case of vines, at least un- 
til the fruit have approached the colouring and ripen- 
ing stage. Like firing, ventilation must be cautiously 
regulated, according to the state of the weather ; and 
when the fruit are ripe, a free circulation of warm dry 
air is necessary to flavour and colour them. 

MOISTURE IN THE AIE AND SYRINGING. 

Although the peach is a moisture-loving plant, I do 
not approve of heavy and too frequent syringing at 
midwinter before the fruit are set. As has already 
been said, it has a tendency to bring the foliage too 
much in advance of the blossoms. Notwithstanding 
all that has been said in favour of syringing heavily 
when forcing is commenced, to cause the bloom-buds 
to swell freely, I have never observed that, with the 
house kept moderately moist without syringing, the 
blossoms burst at all less vigorous when syringing has 
never been practised till the fruit are set. The floor 
and paths should be sprinkled at shutting-time, and 
on bright mornings after cold nights when extra fire- 
heat has been applied. As soon as the fruit are set, 
the syringe should be vigorously used every dry morn- 
ing, and especially in the afternoon, when the house is 
shut up with sun-heat. 

Syringing should be thus continued until the fruit 
shows signs of ripening. The peach is subject to red- 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. 169 

spider, and syringing keeps that pest at bay ; and it also 
likes moisture about its foliage. The morning syring- 
ing should always be early, so that rapid evaporation 
does not take place as ventilation is increased. Clear 
soot-water that is, water in which dry fresh soot has 
been mixed and allowed to stand and become clear 
may be applied occasionally with the engine or syringe 
to advantage. The ammonia from the soot gives a dark 
healthy hue to the foliage. 

SETTING THE FRUIT. 

I have never found the least difficulty in getting 
peaches to set freely, even when they have been started 
in November. The only means I have ever adopted 
to make a good set of fruit doubly sure, is to slightly 
increase the temperature immediately the blooms are 
fully expanded, to give rather more air, and to go over 
the blossoms at mid-day with a camel's-hair brush, and 
impregnate them, taking pollen from those sorts, such 
as Violette Hative, which produce it more freely than 
others, and applying it to such as Noblesse, which pro- 
duce it more sparingly. 

I do not think that setting depends so much on 
either dryness or moisture as on a circulation of warm 
air, which causes the pollen to come to proper matur- 
ity. Some growers advise that the trees be syringed 
with tepid water when in full bloom, arid practise this to 
set their peach-crop successfully. I have never adopted 
this, and never found it necessary, but it is practised 
by successful early forcers of the peach. There can 
be no difficulty in accepting what has been said in its 
favour, inasmuch as it can be easily understood how 
the particles of pollen can- be separated and carried 



I7O FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

down the pistil by means of water, as well as air. It 
is, in as far as it can be aided, a mechanical process. 
I consider the chief thing is to produce a strong healthy 
bloom and fructifying organs, by cautious forcing, and 
then the setting of the fruit is almost a certainty. 

WATERING. 

It is difficult to lay down directions as to the time 
that peaches require to be watered at the roots, so much 
depends on circumstances, such as the nature of the 
soil, &c. &c. In the case of trees having their roots 
both in inside and outside borders, it is never neces- 
sary in early forcing to water the outside border. The 
inside border should be thoroughly moistened to the 
bottom when the house is put in order for forcing. I 
have an objection to peach borders becoming dusty 
dry at any time ; for if they once become too dry, and 
are then copiously watered, and started soon after, they 
are apt to cast their bloom-buds after they begin to 
swell. Under ordinary circumstances, I have found a 
good watering when the house is about to be started, 
another after the fruit are set, sufficient. After this 
the constant syringing and damping keep the border 
from drying, and the watering after they are set will 
carry them to the stoning process. After they are 
stoned, two waterings will be enough till the fruit be- 
gin to ripen. Then mulch the border with short dung, 
and no more water should be applied till the fruit 
are all gathered, after which the border must be kept 
moist till the wood is ripe, and the leaves dropping. 

Manure-water may be freely applied at all times of 
watering in the case of full-grown, free-bearing trees. 
Young trees growing vigorously should not have man- 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. I/ 1 

ure- water, as their tendency to a gross growth will be 
stimulated by it. 

RIPENING AND GATHERING THE FRUIT. 

The colour and flavour of peaches and nectarines are 
perhaps more dependent on given circumstances than 
are the same qualities in any other fruit. Unless the 
sun shines directly on the fruit, it will not attain its 
proper colour ; and unless, in addition to exposure to 
sunshine, they are subjected to a circulation of dry 
warm air, the flavour is sure to be deficient. Con- 
sequently all leaves that intercept direct sunshine 
must be pushed aside after the fruit has begun to 
take its last swelling. If the leaves cannot all be 
laid effectually aside, it is better to remove all or 
half of some of the leaves than that they should 
shade the fruit. I have seldom found it necessary to 
cut the leaves or remove them entirely. When the 
wood is not too thickly tied in, such a necessity rarely 
occurs. 

As directed under the head of ventilation, the peach- 
house should be freely opened at top and front all day, 
and the wet -weather ventilation left open all night. 
The practice of pulling down the sashes, where this 
can be adopted, entirely exposing the fruit to sun and 
air, in ripening and colouring summer and autumn 
peaches, is a good one. It gives high colour and 
flavour. Of course this should only be practised 
when the weather is clear and dry. 

The experienced eye can tell, in the majority 
of sorts, when the fruit are fit to gather without 
handling them. When they are handled it should 
be with great nicety of touch, the peach being very 



1/2 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

easily blemished when ripe. The crop should be 
looked over every day, placing the fingers gently be- 
hind those fruits that appear the ripest, and if with 
a gentle pressure from the branch the fruit does not 
easily separate from its stalk, leave it for another clay. 
Each fruit should be carefully laid upon its base in 
a basket, the bottom of which is lined with wadding 
covered with tissue-paper, the fruit being regulated so 
that one does not touch another. It is well to gather 
peaches and nectarines for dessert six hours before they 
are sent to table, and leave them in the fruit-room to 
cool. Nets are sometimes fixed, and the fruit allowed 
to drop into them, but peaches should never be al- 
lowed to drop if it can be prevented. It is, however, 
best to use such a precaution, to prevent any that may 
drop from injury. 

Peaches keep a good many days after they are ripe 
in a cool place. In 1865 I kept such tender-fleshed 
varieties as Noblesse and Bellegarde for twelve days, 
in close tin boxes placed in an ice-house, after they 
were quite fit for table, and then exhibited them in 
Edinburgh. Nectarines keep fully longer in this way. 

PACKING PEACHES TO BE SENT TO A DISTANCE. 

When peaches have to be sent by railway and other 
conveyances, great care is necessary in packing them. 
The safest way is to have tin boxes divided into com- 
partments 3 f inches square and 4 inches deep. In the 
bottom of each division put a little fine paper-shavings 
pressed down. Wrap each fruit carefully in a piece of 
tissue-paper, then set it on its base on a square of 
cotton wadding, which fold up over the fruit, taking 
each corner between the fingers and thumb, and drop- 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. 173 

ping it carefully into its place. There should be suffi- 
cient wadding round each to prevent oscillation. Over 
the whole surface of the box spread some fine paper- 
shavings, so that when the lid of the wooden box, into 
which the tin case should fit tightly, is screwed down, 
the shavings may press sufficiently on the wadding to 
keep all steady without bruising the fruit. In this 
way they can be sent long distances without the 
slightest damage. Peaches and nectarines to be sent 
in this way should, however, never be over-ripe. In- 
deed they should be gathered a day earlier than when 
they are sent direct to table from the garden. 

INSECTS. 

Red-Spider. I have never found much difficulty in 
preventing red-spider from gaining much of a footing 
on peaches. Cleanliness in connection with the wood- 
work, glass, and everything else, the dressing recom- 
mended for the trees after they are pruned, and the 
syringing recommended throughout the forcing season, 
are the best preventives. When spider does make 
its appearance, attack it vigorously with clean tepid 
water from the syringe or engine. After the fruit are 
gathered, a handful of flower of sulphur may be mixed 
with the water. Peach-foliage seems to thrive under 
the influence of sulphur applied in this way. This 
insect is easily driven off the smooth surface of the 
peach - leaf, and vigorous syringings I have always 
found sufficient to master it when it did appear. 

Green-Fly. Green-fly is very easily destroyed by 
fumigating with tobacco, and its very first appearance, 
in however small numbers, should be the signal for 
exterminating it. I have known it destroy a crop 



174 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

very much when it got a footing when the fruit were 
setting. The trees should be dry the evening of fumi- 
gation, and the tobacco should never be allowed to 
burst into flame. The fumigation should not take 
place when the trees are in bloom. 

Brown-Scale. I never had to deal with this insect 
on peach-trees but once. The trees were syringed, 
after they dropped their leaves, with water at 145; 
and though the wood was coated with the insect, I 
never saw more of it after the syringing. 

Thrips. This is a troublesome enemy to peaches 
when it attacks them. It cannot be said that the 
peach is subject to thrips ; but when plants infested 
with them are placed in peach-houses which never 
should be, but often is, done they spread rapidly on 
the peach-foliage. Fumigation with tobacco, on which 
some Cayenne pepper has been dusted, for a few suc- 
cessive nights, destroys it. Engine the trees freely 
after the fumigations to wash the insects and the 
smell away. When the fruit are gathered, thrips can 
be conquered by syringing two or three times with 
tobacco -liquor, made by boiling at the rate of 3 oz. 
of tobacco to a gallon of water. This should be 
applied late in the evening, and the house kept close 
for the night, so that the liquor may hang longer about 
the foliage. 

DISEASES. 

The peach and nectarine are singularly free from 
disease under glass in a good border, unless it be 
mildew at times on some varieties. They are rarely 
attacked with those diseases, such as curl and canker, 
which are so troublesome on the open walls. Gum- 
ming occasionally causes the death of a branch, and 



THE PEACH AND NECTARINE. 175 

is often the result of a bruise, or a tie that has been 
too tight and cut into the branch. When it appears 
to any extent, the best plan is to remove the affected 
branch at once. Mildew is the effect of over-dryness, 
and also of too much wet. Whenever it appears, dust 
the affected parts with sulphur, and if the border 
is dry, water it sufficiently to moisten the soil. If 
the cause is traceable to bad drainage, it should be 
rectified. 



THE FIG. 



" THE fig of our gardens is the Ficus Carica of botanists, 
The name Ficus, applied to this very anciently known 
fruit, is most probably derived from Feg, its Hebrew 
name ; that of Carica is from Caria, in Asia Minor, 
where fine varieties of it have long existed. Accord- 
ing to various authors, it is a native of Western Africa, 
Northern Africa, and the south of Europe, including 
Greece and Italy. It is certainly indigenous to Asia 
Minor, but it may have been then introduced and 
naturalised in the islands of the Mediterranean and 
the countries near its shores, both in Europe and 
Africa. 

" Figs have been used in the East as an article of 
food from time immemorial. They were amongst the 
fruits brought back from Canaan by the Israelites sent 
by Moses to report on the productions of the land. 
We read of a present having been made to David of 
200 cakes of figs. They were probably used chiefly 
in the dried state. The drying is easily effected in a 
warm climate by exposure to the sun's rays, in the 
same way as those grapes are dried which are called 
from that circumstance raisins of the sun. Like the 



THE FIG. 177 

grape, the substance of the fig abounds in what is 
termed grape-sugar. In drying, some of this exudes, 
and forms that soft white powder which we see on 
the imported dried figs. They are thus preserved in 
their own sugar, and rendered fit for storing up as an 
article of food. 

"Figs were considered of such necessity by the 
Athenians that their exportation from Attica was pro- 
hibited. The figs of Athens were celebrated for their 
exquisite flavour, and Xerxes was induced by them to 
undertake the conquest of Attica. The African figs 
were also much admired at Eome, although Pliny says 
it is not long since they began to grow figs in Africa. 
Cato, in order to stimulate the Eoman senators to de- 
clare war against Carthage, showed them a fig brought 
from thence. It was fresh and in good condition, and 
all agreed that it must have been quite recently pulled 
from the tree. ' Yes/ says Cato, ' it is not yet three 
days since this fig was gathered at Carthage ; see by it 
how near to the city we have a mortal enemy ! ' This 
argument determined the senate to commence the Third 
Punic War, the result of which was that Carthage, the 
rival of Eome, was utterly destroyed. 

"The fig may have been introduced into Britain 
along with the vine by the Eomans, or subsequently 
by the monks. But if it had, it seems to have dis- 
appeared till brought from Italy by Cardinal Pole, 
either when he returned from that country in 1525, or 
after his second residence abroad in 1548. In either 
case, the identical trees which he brought were planted 
in the garden of the archiepiscopal palace at Lambeth, 
and have certainly existed for more than 300 years. 
This proves that the fig lives to a great age, even under 
less favourable circumstances than it enjoys in its 

M 



1/8 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

native country. In this country a chalk subsoil and a 
climate like that near the south coast appear to suit 
the fig best. There the tree grows and bears as stand- 
ards. They are liable, however, to be killed to the 
ground in winters of excessive severity, but they 
spring up afresh from the roots. There was an orchard 
not exceeding three-quarters of an acre at Sarring, near 
Worthing, in Sussex, containing 100 standard fig-trees. 
About 100 dozen ripe figs were usually gathered daily 
from these trees during August, September, and Octo- 
ber. By selecting similarly favoured spots, it may be 
fairly concluded that this country could supply itself 
with abundance of fresh figs. As for dry ones, they 
are obtained in large quantities from Turkey, the 
Mediterranean, and other countries, but the supply for 
centuries back has chiefly been from Turkey. The 
import has been as much as 1000 tons a-year, and 
now that the duty is taken off, the quantity imported 
will doubtless be much greater. 

" The inflorescence and the fruit of the fig are very 
distinct in their character from other fruits. It con- 
sists of a hollow fleshy receptacle, with an orifice in 
the top, which is surrounded and nearly closed by a 
number of imbricated scales as many as 200, accord- 
ing to Duhamel. The flowers, unlike those of most 
fruit-trees, make no outward appearance, but are con- 
cealed within the fig on its internal surface ; they are 
male and female, the former situated near the orifice, 
the latter in that part of the concavity next the stalk. 
On cutting open a fig when it has attained little more 
than one-third of its size, the flowers will be seen in 
full development ; and provided the stamens are per- 
fect, fertilisation takes place at that stage of growth. 
But it often happens that the stamens are imperfect, 



THE FIG. 179 

and no seeds are formed, nevertheless the fruit swells 
and ripens." l 

The fig is considered one of the most wholesome of 
fruits, both in a dried state and when newly gathered 
in a ripe condition. It being a fruit which yields 
ample returns for the care that it requires, it is a 
wonder that it is not more generally allotted a promi- 
nent place in glass houses in this country. Still its 
culture, both in pots and planted out in prepared 
borders, has been considerably extended of late years, 
and it is evidently a fruit rising in favour with all 
possessors of gardens in which it can be accommodated 
under glass. Its cultivation under glass has long 
been practised ; but, strange to say, it has generally 
occupied the position of an interloper, and been as- 
signed a place merely on the back wall of a vinery, 
or in pits under the shade of vines and peaches. 
Under such circumstances it never can develop its 
capabilities, either as to its prolific fruit-bearing char- 
acter or flavour, and no wonder, therefore, that it has 
not been much thought of. It is now treated differ- 
ently, and more in accordance with its nature and re- 
quirements ; and houses entirely devoted to fig-culture 
either in pots or planted out, are daily becoming 
much more common. When its excellence as a fruit, 
and the fact that, unlike most other fruits, it bears 
two and even three crops yearly, are considered, the 
wonder is that it is not more thought of than it is. 

1 Lindley's Treasury of Botany. 



i8o 



FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 



FIG-HOUSE. 

The successful cultivation of the fig does not neces- 
sitate any peculiar or special arrangements in provid- 
ing a structure suitable for it, provided it has plenty 
of light and means of ventilation, and a moderate 
command of heat. It is successfully cultivated trained 




g.t.t 



FIG. 18. 

on trellises all over the roofs of houses in all respects 
like vineries and peach-houses, both lean-to and span- 
roofed in form in narrower houses, mere glass cases, 
trained to the back wall like a peach or planted out 
in pits of less dimensions, in bush form like a goose- 
berry or currant, or with its roots confined to pots of 



THE FIG. l8l 

by no means large dimensions. In short, it is the 
most accommodating of fruits in this respect, and good 
crops can be produced in all these forms of erections, 
provided they are otherwise properly managed. As 
in the case of all other fruits, I recommend that for 
early forcing the lean-to form be adopted, and the 
trees trained near the glass, just like vines. For late 
crops the span-roofed form is to be recommended, as 
providing the greatest fruiting surface at least expense. 
Fig. 18 represents a span-roofed house well adapted 
for the latter, and shows also the arrangement which I 
consider best as to the bed for the soil or border. Over- 
luxuriance, and therefore unfruitfulness, must always 
be provided against in the culture of the fig ; hence 
I recommend the space for the roots to be limited 
and perfectly under control, and in wet cold locali- 
ties entirely under glass, at least for some years after 
the trees are planted. Should their after -condition 
indicate that they would be benefited by an extension 
of the border outwards, it can easily be carried out. 
Like the peach, the fig when growing likes a moist 
atmosphere, and a steaming-tray on the pipes should 
always be provided, especially when early forcing is 
practised. The roof should be wired the same as for 
vines. 

SOIL AND FORMATION OF BORDER. 

The fig is not by any means difficult to accommodate 
with soil, provided it is not rich nor resting on a damp 
bottom. Naturally it is a most luxuriant grower, pro- 
ducing in rich soils immense growth and foliage with 
next to no fruit. To secure well-ripened fruitful wood, 
this tendency has to be taken into account, and requires 



1 82 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

to be counteracted by the constituents of which the 
border is formed. Two parts loamy soil such as has 
been recommended for vines, but lighter and one 
part old lime -rubbish, without manure of any sort, 
forms a border sufficiently rich for several years with- 
out any assistance but water, and it forms an excellent 
channel for applying manure either by top-dressing or 
in a liquid form when such becomes necessary. These 
two constituents should be thoroughly mixed together, 
in a dry state, before being put into the bed. If loam 
fresh and turfy cannot be procured, common garden- 
soil that is not highly impregnated with manure can 
be substituted with" success for, as has been already 
remarked, the fig is not by any means fastidious. 

Where the subsoil is clayey, or cold and damp, the 
roots should not have access to it, therefore the whole 
of the site should be effectually concreted. To have 
the individual trees entirely under control, the site for 
the soil should be intersected by walls formed of brick 
to separate the roots of each tree entirely from those of 
its fellows. This leaves the cultivator every chance 
of treating individual varieties and trees as circum- 
stances may suggest, without interfering with any 
other. The width of these spaces should be deter- 
mined by the length of roof or rafter. For such as is 
represented by fig. 18, each compartment may be from 
10 to 12 feet, that being sufficient space for each tree. 
Immediately over the concrete two efficient tile-drains 
from each compartment should be led into the main 
drain running underneath the pathway. Over the 
whole bottom broken bricks or road-metal to the depth 
of 8 inches should be laid, and blinded with some finer 
material, such as coarse sandless gravel. With a turf 
grassy side downwards all over this drainage, the site 



THE FIG. 183 

is ready for the soil ; and, to begin with, it should not 
be filled in more than 20 inches deep, rather firmly 
packed, leaving 4 inches for the addition of top-dress- 
ings when such become necessary. 



VARIETIES OF FIGS. 

In order to keep up a constant succession of ripe figs 
for a good many months of the year, as shall be treated 
of, not very many varieties are necessary. Taking into 
consideration the fruitfulness and good qualities of figs 
in cultivation, I do not know of any so thoroughly satis- 
factory as the old and well-known Brown Turkey and 
White Marseilles (Eaby Castle). These are splendid 
varieties for both pot-culture and fruiting in borders. 
Some smaller varieties are extremely fruitful, such as 
Black Provence, Singleton, White Ischia, and others; but 
they are small, and not so desirable as those first named. 
Mr Barron, Garden Superintendent at the Eoyal Horti- 
cultural Gardens, who has had great opportunities of 
forming an opinion, and who has excelled in the pot- 
culture of the fig, in writing regarding keeping up a 
rich and varied supply from a house devoted to the 
cultivation of the fig in pots, and where the collection 
is limited to say fifty plants, gives the following as 
his selection for keeping up a continuous supply of 
ripe fruit from June to Christmas. The varieties he 
puts into groups thus, showing how they will give a 
supply of fruit in each month : " July White Mar- 
seilles, De la Madeleine, Gros Monstrueuse de Lipardi, 
Brown Turkey. August White Marseilles, Lee's 
Perpetual (Brown Turkey), De Lipardi. September 
White Ischia, Grosse Yiolette de Bourdeaux, Black 
Provence, Grosse Verte, Bourjassotte Grisie, Col de 



1 84 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

Signora Blanca, De 1'Archipel, and the second crop of 
White Marseilles and Lee's Perpetual. October 
White Ischia, Black Provence, Grosse Verte, Bourjas- 
sotte Grisie, Col de Signora Blanca, and Col de Sig- 
nora Nera. November White Ischia, Grosse Verte, 
Lee's Perpetual, D'Agen. December White Ischia, 
D'Agen, the latest of all." Negro Largo is also a fine 
variety for pot-culture, but our experience of it when 
planted out is that it is a shy fruiter. 

Where, however, space is limited so that such a col- 
lection is impracticable, I recommend as the most con- 
stantly prolific and otherwise excellent, the varieties 
I first named. They are medium-sized and of excel- 
lent flavour. What the Black Hamburg is among 
grapes, I consider Brown Turkey to be among figs ; 
and in small gardens, where space for only one variety 
can be afforded, this is the most constantly prolific, 
and otherwise satisfactory. 

PROPAGATION. 

The fig is perhaps the most easily propagated of all 
the more tender fruit-bearing trees or bushes. Wher- 
ever a branch touches the soil in the growing season, 
it there very speedily throws out roots, and can there- 
fore be very readily increased by layering. It also pro- 
duces suckers freely, and these can be detached and 
trained into any form required. It is easily increased 
by eyes or cuttings in spring, much the same as is 
practised in vine propagation. I, however, prefer plants 
propagated by cuttings, for all purposes and forms of 
training. The cuttings should be selected and detached 
from the trees while in a dormant state, laid in by the 
heels in moist soil, where severe frost cannot affect 



THE FIG. 185 

them, and where, at the same time, they will be kept 
cool. The straightest, shortest-jointed, and best-ripened 
growths of the previous season, about 8 inches long, 
having a strong terminal bud, are best. In detaching 
them from the parent plant, take with them an inch 
or two of the two-year-old wood. All that is necessary 
in preparing them for the cutting-pots is to cut them 
cleanly through just at the union of the one year's 
growth with the other. The middle of February is a 
good time to put them into heat. Drain the required 
number of 4-inch pots efficiently, and fill them firmly 
with sandy loam. Make a hole in the centre of each 
for a single cutting, and place a little sand under their 
base and round them. Water them, to settle the sand 
firmly about them, and plunge the pots in a bottom- 
heat of 80 to 85 where the temperature of the air 
does not exceed 60 at night, and shade them during 
sunshine. It is desirable that the formation of roots 
should be as nearly as possible contemporaneous with 
top-growth. A rather strong bottom with a compara- 
tively low air temperature favours this. Over- watering 
must be avoided, and if they are placed in a close pro- 
pagating-house, pine-pit, or dung-frame, very little will 
be necessary to keep the soil moderately moist until 
the buds begin to push and leaves are formed, after 
which their getting once very dry may prove fatal to 
them. If they do not root when they have formed a 
leaf or two, they do so very soon after. Until they 
do form roots keep the foliage moist, and do not expose 
them to over-much air. By turning a plant or two 
carefully out of their pots it can easily be ascertained 
when they have formed roots, after which gradually 
dispense with shading, and air more freely. 

Allow them to grow in the 4-inch pots till they have 



1 86 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

well filled them with roots. Then shift them into 6- 
iiich pots, draining them well, and using one-year-old 
turfy loam without any manurial addition. They will 
now grow rapidly without bottom-heat, should have 
as much light as possible, and be aired sufficiently to 
keep them from making weakly long-jointed growths. 
Figs are very fond of moisture, and may now be well 
syringed every sunny day at shutting-up time, which 
should be sufficiently early to cause the heat to run 
to 80 for a short time, but not subjecting them to 
a higher night temperature than 60 to 68, accord- 
ing to the weather. 

The description of cuttings I have recommended 
have generally a cluster of buds near their points ; 
and as their training must begin with their growth, 
these buds must be dealt with accordingly. Whether 
the plants are ultimately intended for pot-culture or 
as bushes, or trained trees on trellises near the glass, 

1 in all cases prefer a plant with a clean stem of from 
10 to 12 inches at least. All lateral growths must 
therefore be removed, or rather prevented by rubbing 
off the buds, and the leader alone allowed to grow to 
the desired height, when the top bud should be pinched 
out. When to be planted out and trained to a trellis 

2 or 3 feet below the level of the first wire, the height 
at which they are stopped must be regulated accord- 
ingly. I consider it of the greatest moment in the 
successful culture of the fig that every tree or bush for 
pot-culture or planting out should be trained with a 
clean stem. When allowed to form growths sucker- 
fashion near the surface of the soil, it is impossible to 
balance the trees with uniformly fruitful growths. As 
I am now treating of plants to be planted in borders, 
and trained near to the glass like vines, I will leave 



THE FIG. 187 

the training most desirable for pot - plants for the 
present, as their cultivation in pots will embrace that 
point also. Their natural inclination, when in a young 
state, to grow too rampant, makes it most desirable that 
plants being reared for planting in borders should be 
induced, if possible, to form a stubby habit of growth 
before being planted out. Therefore I do not recom- 
mend their being planted the year they are propagated, 
but to be confined to a rather small pot with poor soil. 
When they have formed a leading shoot to the desired 
height, been stopped, and have broken two or three 
buds at the top, shift them out of the 6 -inch into 8- 
inch pots, and place them in a light house, where they 
will make short-jointed and well-ripened wood. 

If, after being stopped, they break into more than 
three growths, rub off all except the leader and one on 
each side of the stem. Should any of them break 
with less than three, cut a nick above the one that is 
desired to break, and more than likely it will come 
away. When the leader has grown about 15 inches, 
stop it and the two laterals again, to cause another 
pair of lateral growths to break horizontally, and with 
another leader, thus laying the foundation for their 
being trained horizontally to the wires of the fig-house. 
They can be kept growing thus in a temperature not 
quite so high as for vines till the middle or end of 
August, after which they will require more air and a 
drier atmosphere, in as light a place as possible, to 
thoroughly ripen their growths. It is astonishing the 
immense bushes that can be formed the first season 
even from single eyes, if shifted on and pinched ; but 
the object in the case of the plants now under con- 
sideration, as has already been stated, is not so much 
size the first year, as a well- compacted growth, and a. 



1 88 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

proper foundation for permanent horizontally-trained 
trees in the fig-house border. It is questionable if 
it would be any loss of time, in bringing trees into a 
fruitful condition, to keep the plants two instead of 
one year in comparatively small pots, to get them into 
what may be termed a semi-stunted growth. 

As soon as they have ripened their wood and shed 
their leaves, they can be stored away in any place 
where they will neither be exposed to severe frost 
nor to a temperature high enough to excite them into 
growth before spring, keeping them just moist at the 
root, but nothing more. About midwinter they should 
be pruned, if they require any pruning at all, after the 
way which I have recommended them to be stopped 
when growing. The trees will have a leading shoot 
and two pairs of horizontal growths. If the leading 
shoot is, however, longer than is sufficient to reach to 
two wires of the fig-house beyond the highest pair of 
laterals, cut it back to that extent ; and if the lateral 
growths are not thoroughly ripened, shorten them back 
to firm wood. Eemove all the buds with the point 
of a sharp knife from the leader, except the highest 
three, one of which will form the leader, and the two 
next to it the lateral growths to train right and left 
to the wires, and other two buds to break into growth, 
to furnish the lowest unfurnished wire : thus leaving 
on the leading stem of last season's growth five buds 
to furnish a leading, and two pairs of horizontal 
growths for the two lowest unfurnished wires. By 
pruning the trees when at rest, they do not bleed so 
much as when cut in spring with the sap in motion. 



THE FIG. 189 



TIME AND MANNER OF PLANTING. 

The best time to plant young trees, the preparation 
of which has just been detailed, is in spring, when 
they begin to swell their buds, and are about to start 
into growth. If kept in a cool place, as recommended, 
this will take place about the end of March or early 
in April, according to the mildness or coldness of the 
season. As has already been stated, the counteraction 
of the fig's natural tendency to a gross unfruitful 
growth in the younger stages of its progress is always 
an important point, necessary to the speedy furnishing 
of a fig -house with fruitful wood. The method of 
planting must also be directed to this end. Perhaps 
a less gross growth can be had the first season by just 
turning the matted balls of roots out of their pots, and 
inserting them entire into the border, ramming the 
soil firmly about them. Such a mode of planting any 
tree is highly objectionable, and in the case of figs 
there will be strong roots coiled at the very bottom 
of the balls, which will strike deeply down into the 
border, leaving the surface parts of it unoccupied with 
roots for a long time, and consequently less under the 
control of the cultivator. Moreover, by planting this 
way there are sure to be some gross roots that will 
be the means of producing gross shoots in certain 
parts of the tree. 

The best way is to entirely shake the soil from the 
roots, carefully disentangle them, and cut closely back 
all the thickest of them, leaving those only which are 
more fibry and close to the stem ; and in the opera- 
tion of planting, to spread these regularly out in the 
border, covering them with not more than 3 or 4 



1 90 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

inches of soil. Before planting, presuming that the 
border is made of such porous material as has been 
recommended, and not wet, it should be trodden firmly 
down before the trees are planted. This prevents it 
from holding so much water in suspension as when 
in a more loose and spongy condition, and, as a con- 
sequence, assists in checking a too vigorous growth. 
When the trees are all planted, at from 10 to 12 feet 
apart, the surface of the border should be slightly 
higher than it is ultimately intended to be, as it will 
in course of time subside a little. Settle the soil 
about the roots with water applied through a rose. 
Tie the trees loosely, for the present, in their places, 
training the main stem straight up the roof of the 
house, the laterals horizontally to the wires, and they 
are ready for a start. 

Of course, in planting a house in this way there 
will be ample light admitted to the body of it for 
a few years, to admit of a row of figs in pots being 
grown on each side of the passage, either plunging 
them in the border, or placing them on the surface. 
These will yield a supply of fruit till the permanent 
trees come well into bearing. Some plant a double 
quantity of trees, and remove the supernumeraries as 
the permanent require the space. But seeing that 
planted -out trees never bear very freely for several 
years after being planted, I recommend those in pots 
in preference until they become unnecessary and im- 
practicable from the extension and bearing condition 
of the planted-out trees, which are far less trouble- 
some than plants in pots, unless in the case of very 
early forcing perhaps. 



THE FIG. IQI 

TRAINING AND GENERAL MANAGEMENT THE 
FIRST YEAR. 

Immediately the trees are planted, keep the night 
temperature at 55, allowing it to increase 10 or 15 
by day with sunshine. As soon as they have well 
burst their buds into growth, raise the night temper- 
ature to 60, with a corresponding increase by day. 
Keep the atmosphere genially moist, and syringe the 
trees freely with tepid water early in the morning 
and when the house is shut up in the afternoon. 
Give more or less air every day, according to the 
weather. Watch the progress of the buds, and if the 
three terminal buds directed to be left at pruning- 
time start freely into growth, and the two lower ones 
do not show signs of also moving freely, cut a notch 
into the wood with a sharp knife immediately above 
the latter, to check the flow of sap past them, and they 
will grow more in proportion with those higher up. 

With the syringings recommended and a moist 
atmosphere they will not require water applied im- 
mediately to their roots for some time not at least 
till they have formed some leaves, and have begun 
to grow freely. Even then avoid giving them too 
copious a supply. Just give sufficient in conjunction 
with the syringings to prevent their being checked 
injuriously for want of it; otherwise' the tendency to 
produce strong growths will be promoted. As the sea- 
son advances and less fire-heat is required, advance the 
temperature to 65 and to 70 at night. As the trees 
grow more rapidly, give a corresponding amount of air, 
always in conjunction with sprinklings, to keep the air 
moist and the foliage free from red-spider. 



1 92 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

Usually the leading shoot pushes away into growth 
with greater vigour than the lateral ; advantage should 
be taken of this tendency to manipulate it so as to get 
it to throw out lateral growths right and left, instead 
of allowing it to push ahead without doing so, and the 
following season to have to cut it back to get it to 
break regularly. There are two ways of handling this 
leading growth to get it to furnish the wires with hori- 
zontal growths the first season. The one is to pinch 
or rather bruise the point of it a little below each 
wire, so as to completely check or stop its growth, and 
cause it to burst into growth at the axils of the leaves, 
one of which growths is again trained as the leader, to 
be again stopped for the same purpose, and the other 
two trained right and left to the wires. This method 
does not result in so straight and trim a main stem 
as is the case with the second method, which is to 
allow the leader to force on its way till it has passed 
three or more of the wires, then to be stopped and 
have a notch cut half-way through it at those buds 
that are best situated for furnishing the wires with 
what may be termed cordon shoots. This will nearly 
always cause these buds to swell and grow a little, 
especially if the leaders of the lower and stronger 
cordon branches are stopped at the same time. In 
the case of strong-growing varieties it is astonishing 
the extent of foundation that can thus be laid for the 
future tree in one season. The system of allowing 
great growthy leaders to extend themselves and rob the 
lower portion of the tree, then to be cut back perhaps 
to the first or second unfurnished wire in spring, is a 
great waste of plant force and time too; besides, it tends 
to the production of a few strong unfruitful growths, 
instead of a greater number of more fruitful ones. 



THE FIG. 193 

The lateral growths formed the previous year, when 
the young plants were in pots, should be dealt with in 
the same way as the main stem, it being necessary that 
they also should be furnished with lateral shoots, to 
supply the fruit-bearing wood of the future. 

Throughout the whole season the trees should be 
subject to a moist atmosphere and liberal syringings, 
for the fig in a growing state delights in moisture ; 
and when not sufficiently supplied with it, red-spider 
is sure to infest it. This is more especially essential 
as they should not be over-stimulated at the root with 
either water or manure of any kind before they come 
freely into bearing. The result at the close of the first 
season should be as much of the formation in the way 
of shaping the trees as possible with moderately strong 
but thoroughly matured growths. At the close of the 
season nothing should be withheld that is necessary to 
thoroughly consolidate or ripen the wood. Fire-heat 
should be increased in October, and the air kept dry 
and circulating about them till this end is thoroughly 
attained. 

PRUNING AND PINCHING. 

When the trees have shed their leaves, they should 
be kept comparatively dry at the root all winter. 
What pruning is necessary should be performed in 
winter when they are at rest. Very little pruning 
will, however, suffice, if their summer growths have 
been produced and regulated according to the fore- 
going directions. There will be the main stems, with 
the cordon branches that were established the previous 
year, when the young plants were in pots, now ex- 
tending right and left to about four feet, with their 

N 



194 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

lateral growths at regular intervals, and the cordon 
growths produced this season. My practice in prun- 
ing figs thus trained horizontally, and from which two 
crops are to be annually ripened, differs somewhat 
from that usually pursued, and may be described as a 
mixture of vine-pruning on the close-spur system and 
ordinary peach-pruning. The accompanying woodcut, 
fig. 19, will illustrate at a glance what I mean by this, 
and serve for the rule which I consider the best in fig- 
pruning generally. It may be explained to the tyro, 
that the first crop of fruit produced in fig-forcing is 
got from the young wood of the previous summer's 




FIG. 19. 

growth ; and the second, which ripens generally in 
September and October, from the young growths of 
the same summer, and which are produced contempor- 
aneously with the first crop of fruit on the previous 
season's growths. In order to have a regular crop 
over all the tree at these two seasons, this habit must 
be borne in mind, and the pruning performed accord- 
ingly, so that the trees may be regularly furnished 
with these two sets of growths. According to the 
illustration, there are the main, or cordon branches, 
furnished with a set of lateral fruit-bearing growths. I 



THE FIG. 



195 



recommend that every alternate lateral be pruned back 
to an eye, at &, as is generally practised with the vine. 
The other shoots are left as the summer pinching is 
supposed to have left them, and will, if well ripened 
and short-jointed, produce a fig at every bud, especi- 
ally those near their tops. Those cut back may form 
more than one eye ; when this is the case, all should 
be rubbed off but one, to be stopped by pinching or 
bruising its point, when it has grown to from five to 
seven joints, after which stopping it very soon forces 
fruit from the axils of the leaves, which fruit ripens in 
autumn. All attempts at fresh growth beyond these 
autumn fruits should be rubbed off as they make their 
appearance. In the case of the previous year's wood, 
bearing the first or early crop, a couple of joints of 
young growth is all that should be allowed. In the 
case of a well-established tree, with its roots thorough- 
ly under control, and in a fertile state, this system of 
pruning and summer pinching, it can easily be seen, 
directs the efforts of the plant to the production of 
fruit, and only as much young wood as is necessary 
for next season's crop. The young wood produced 
this summer is that on which next season's early crop 
is produced, so that the early fruit-bearing wood is 
that which in the winter pruning is spurred back 
i.e., shoot 6 is cut back this year, and shoot a the next. 
The fig can thus be systematically pruned without 
the too common confusion of a lot of haphazard growths 
in all directions, either to be lopped off with the knife, 
causing unnecessary wounds and bleeding, or to be tied 
up in confused unmeaning bundles, serving no purpose 
whatever. A little trouble and attention in the way of 
directing the summer growths to form trees thus into 
cordon, or horizontal leaders, with lateral fruit-bearing 



196 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

growths, to be alternately spurred back, reduces the 
management, and yearly pruning and pinching, to as 
simple a routine as that of spur-pruning the vine, and 
has great advantages over the system of tying in three 
times more growths every season than are required, to 
be cut away in winter, sadly mutilating the trees. 

Root-Pruning. For the first few years after young figs 
are planted, root-pruning should be as carefully attended 
to as the training and pruning of the trees themselves, 
otherwise they will not so soon be brought into a 
fruitful condition. The roots should be seen to at the 
time of winter pruning. A trench should be taken out 
down to the drainage round each tree at about 3 feet 
from the stems, and the roots carefully disentangled, 
lifted back to within 20 inches of the stem, pre- 
serving all the finer fibry roots, and cutting back those 
that are strong. The second year the same process 
should be attended to, but not encroaching so near the 
stem. In my own experience I have found that in 
limited and not too rich borders, two root-prunings 
have been sufficient to bring the trees into free bearing, 
unless it be some of the more gross-growing and gen- 
erally the least desirable sorts. Such free-fruiting and 
desirable varieties as Brown Turkey, Grosse Verte, and 
Eaby Castle can be brought into free-bearing condition 
by two root-prunings, with the system of pruning and 
pinching the tops that has been recommended. 

Before treating of the general management in forcing 
the fig so as to keep up a supply of fruit from May 
till the beginning of winter, I will now refer to figs in 
pots, as they form an important feature, especially in 
the very early forcing of the fig. 



THE FIG. 197 

FIGS IN POTS. 

There is perhaps no other fruit-bearing bush or tree 
that is more manageable or more productive when 
confined to pots than the fig. In this way it is 
most serviceable and easily cultivated throughout the 
season. But it is especially when very early forcing 
is required that plants in pots are to be recom- 
mended. They can also be made to bear in a very 
young and small state. I have struck them from eyes 
in February, and by shifting and pinching have formed 
comparatively large heads on a clear stem in 9 -inch 
pots, with a good sprinkling of ripe fruit on them late 
in the autumn of the same year. This refers to Brown 
Turkey and one or two of the most free-fruiting varieties. 
For the propagation of figs to be permanently culti- 
vated in pots, I refer to the directions already given 
under that head, as the process does not differ in any 
way from that recommended in the case of plants for 
planting in borders. The training of pot-plants is, 
however, different, inasmuch as the object desired is 
a plant with a bush-like head of bearing branches and 
twigs. As in the case of plants for borders, plants with 
clean single stems, about a foot high, are best for pots 
such plants as may be described as dwarf standards. 

Training, Pruning, &c. Fig. 20, engraved from a 
photograph, represents a plant four years old from the 
cutting, in an 11 -inch pot, bearing its second crop of 
fruit of the same season. It bore two heavy crops the 
previous year. To form such a plant, the point was 
pinched out of the cutting when about a foot high. 
When the several shoots with which it broke away into 
growth were long and strong enough to bear it, they 
were occasionally bent downwards with the hand, and 



198 



FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 



when they had grown 6 or 7 inches long, they had the 
terminal bud pinched out of them, and these shoots 
started away again with generally two growths. The 
plants were then shifted into 8 -inch pots, and encouraged 
to grow in a warm moist house with plenty of light and 
air. After being well ripened they were pruned back, 




FIG. 20. 

each shoot to three eyes, except some which were short 
and stubby enough not to require it. The following 
spring it was, along with several dozens of others, 
some larger and some less, but all the same age, shifted 
into 11 -inch pots after they began to grow, and they 



THE FIG. 199 

bore two good crops, and have made plants that, with 
top-dressing and manure- watering, would continue for 
several years to bear fine fruit in the same pots. Still 
it is desirable to give them a small annual shift until 
they are put into 15 -inch pots, which are large enough 
for any purpose. After they get into pots of the last- 
named size, and when they require stimulants in the 
way of fresh soil, the best way is to partially shake 
them out about the latter end of October, and cut back 
some of the strongest roots and pot them in fresh soil. 
By this means they can be kept in excellent bearing 
condition for many years. 

After they begin to bear they require next to no 
winter pruning. It should all be done by summer 
pinching, removing entirely superfluous growths that 
would crowd the plants pinching those that are left at 
every third or fourth joint. Varieties vary very much 
in their habit of growth; some make grosser and longer- 
jointed wood than others, and require to be cut back 
after the leaves are shed. Such varieties, as a rule, are 
not so useful for pot-culture as the more stubby growers, 
and they seldom yield a satisfactory first crop, but bear 
chiefly a second crop on the young wood. These 
varieties are of course to be avoided when early fruit is 
desired, and it is for early crops that pot-figs are especi- 
ally valuable. Always in winter pruning, wherever it 
is necessary, leave untouched all short stubby growths 
with a cluster of buds near their tops. These are the 
most fruitful parts of the trees, and are freely produced 
by well-established trees when bearing heavy crops. 

While the plants are young and being trained, it is 
often necessary, in order to form the heads into proper 
symmetry, to have recourse to staking and tying the 
shoots or branches in their proper places. After the 



20O FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

plants get established, and what in pot-culture may be 
termed full grown, neither this nor much pruning is 
required beyond cutting out old wood to make room 
for new as occasion may require. 

Soil for figs in pots. The soil for plants in pots 
should be richer than has been recommended for bor- 
ders. Two-thirds of rather a strong loam, with a third 
of horse-droppings and a little bone-meal, answers well 
in all pottings after the trees have arrived at a fruit- 
bearing condition. I have sometimes plunged the pots 
in borders of soil for summer and autumn fruiting, 
and let them root through into the border, but do not 
recommend the practice. I approve of plunging the 
pots, but not of letting the roots leave the pots, and it 
should always be prevented. It induces the active 
roots to leave the pots where they are regularly fed, 
and causes gross shoots to be formed at the expense of 
the fruit and the general growth of the other parts of 
the trees. This applies more particularly to young 
growing trees. In the case of older and free -bear- 
ing trees there is less objection to the practice. 

FORCING AND GENERAL MANAGEMENT. 

There is perhaps no other fruit-bearing plant that 
submits with greater freedom and success than the fig 
to early forcing, and it certainly yields under favour- 
able treatment a very good return in the shape of two 
crops of fruit annually. In some cases it has been 
made to produce a third crop by commencing to force 
early, and prolonging the process late in the season ; 
but although this is possible, it is by no means de- 
sirable for, besides the debilitating influence on the 
plants, the third crop is never fine in quality. 



THE FIG. 201 

Where a regular succession of ripe figs is required 
from April to November, I recommend that there be 
a set of plants in pots, and another planted out, as 
has been treated of. Those in pots should be started 
about the new year, to ripen their first crop in April 
and May, and their second in July and August. 
Those planted out in borders, if started at the end of 
February or beginning of March, ripen their first crop 
in the end of May and June, and their second will be 
all gathered before the middle of October, thus keep- 
ing up the supply of ripe figs for at least six months 
of the year. 

In beginning to force those in pots at, say, the 
beginning of January, it is very desirable that they 
be supplied with a gentle bottom-heat. Although 
this is not absolutely necessary, yet they start more 
freely into growth, the young fruit is less likely to 
drop off, and it swells better with bottom-heat than 
without. A house or pit in which figs can be thus 
early forced, may be, and generally is, used for other 
purposes besides. In some cases early strawberries 
are forced along with them on shelves on the back 
wall near the glass ; in others, a pot-vine is fruited 
on each rafter ; and in others, all these three fruits 
are forced in the same house. But there is no doubt 
that where circumstances admit of all these having 
compartments to themselves, they can be forced with 
less trouble and more success. 



TEMPERATURE, WATERING, ETC. 

In early forcing of every description, a lean-to light 
house, with a good command of both top and bottom 
heat, is best for figs. If oak-leaves can easily be got, 



202 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

it does not matter much whether the bottom-heat is 
wholly derived from a bed of leaves of considerable 
depth, say 3 J to 4 feet, or from a lesser quantity 
of them in conjunction with hot water circulating 
below them. So long as a bottom-heat of about 75 
can be maintained, it does not matter much which 
system is pursued. 

Supposing that a set of pot-plants are at command 
in a well-ripened and fruitful state, and that ripe figs 
are required by the end of April, by the 1st of Janu- 
ary they should be plunged to the rim in the leaves. 
If there has been any red-spider on them the previous 
year, let the shoots be well washed with a soft brush 
and water, and then painted with a little sulphur, 
soot, and clay, well mixed together in water. Remove 
any loose soil that may be on the surface of the balls, 
and replace it with loam and horse-droppings in equal 
proportions. In plunging them, give them sufficient 
room to allow the leaves and young growths to ex- 
pand without crowding. Give a good watering of 
water at 80. See that the bottom-heat ranges about 
75, and that the night temperature is kept steadily 
at 50, with an increase of 8 or 10 by day, till they 
show signs of growth, and the young fruit have begun 
to swell. Then raise the temperature to 60 at night, 
with a corresponding increase by day. Give air free- 
ly on all favourable opportunities, and syringe the 
trees morning and evening with water a few degrees 
warmer than the atmosphere of the house. After the 
young fruit get to the size of nuts, over -syringing 
must be avoided, especially in dull weather, as an 
excess of water at the root, in conjunction with a too 
free use of the syringe, has a tendency to cause the 
fruit, especially in dull weather, to become yellow, 



THE FIG. 203 

and drop off before the setting process is past. At 
the same time avoid an arid atmosphere, or a check 
from want of water at the root. Either extreme must 
be avoided until it be seen that the fruit are out of 
danger. But with well -ripened wood and bottom- 
heat, the fruit are rarely lost. As soon as the young 
growths have made four or five joints, pinch out the 
terminal bud, and increase the temperature to 65 in 
mild weather. When the second crop has fairly shown 
itself, feed the plants liberally with liquid manure, 
as there is then a great demand on the energies of 
the plant. Manure-water, made from sheep's dung and 
soot, should be given in a weak clear state every al- 
ternate watering ; or guano, at the rate of a handful 
to a large garden watering-pot of water, answers well. 

KIPENING THE FRUIT. 

Until the first crop begins to show signs of ripen- 
ing, keep the atmosphere moist, and syringe at least 
at shutting-up time on all fine days ; but as soon as 
they begin to ripen discontinue syringing. Give more 
air and just sufficient water at the root to keep the 
foliage and second crop of fruit healthy and free from 
danger, otherwise the flavour of the first crop when 
early will be deficient, and a badly ripened fig is a 
very insipid production. But I would here warn the 
inexperienced against an extreme of drought either at 
the root or in the air ; for this would place the second 
crop in jeopardy. Circumstances must be modified to 
meet as much as possible the welfare of both crops. 

The ripening stage is easily detected : the fruit sud- 
denly complete their second swelling ; the skin cracks 
longitudinally, and frequently it drops down from the 



204 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

neck of the fruit, becoming soft at its junction with 
the stalk. To gather a fig in perfection, it should be 
allowed to hang till the juice begins to exude from its 
eye or apex. Of course, if they have to be packed 
and sent to a distance, they should be gathered a little 
earlier than if just to be sent to the table. 



SECOND CROP. 

As soon as the first crop is all gathered, give every 
encouragement to the second, especially as the natural 
heat of the season has increased. The temperature 
may range a few degrees higher ; syringing be resumed 
and practised regularly on all fine days ; and more 
water can be given at the root. The house may be shut 
up in the afternoon with a temperature of 80 to 85 
according to the weather, with a corresponding degree 
of atmospheric moisture. The fig is very fond of heat 
especially derived from the sun, and also of a moist 
atmosphere. 

When the second crop begins to ripen, air liberally, 
and give just sufficient water to keep the system ac- 
tive and healthy, but no more. As soon as the fruit 
are all gathered, should there be any signs of red- 
spider, syringe the foliage vigorously with water in 
which a little sulphur is mixed. Look over the trees, 
and remove entirely any growths that seem at all to 
crowd the bushes ; and when the wood is ripened, re- 
move the plants to the open air, plunging them in a 
place where they can have full sun, and keep them 
well watered until the leaves drop. 

The routine of forcing trees planted out in borders 
does not differ in any essential point from the fore- 
going directions. They of course require less frequent 



THE FIG. 205 

watering at the root than plants in pots. Still, after 
the trees have thoroughly filled the border with roots 
and have covered the roof of the house with fruit- 
bearing wood, they require copious supplies of water 
and liberal annual top-dressing with rotten manure. 
When bearing heavy crops, ordinary manure, or guano- 
water, should be liberally supplied to them. Except 
when the fruit are ripening, it is not easy to over- 
water a limited border filled with one mass of fig-roots. 
In the first few years of their growth and forcing, it 
is, as has already been stated, undesirable to over-feed 
them. Old fig-trees that are properly managed some- 
times show more fruit than it is desirable to have, and 
it is advisable to thin them slightly; for, as in the case 
of most other fruits, a lesser quantity of fine figs is more 
satisfactory than a greater number of inferior ones. 

To have the first crop of fruit ripe on planted-out 
figs between the time that the first crop is over and 
the coming in of the second in pots, the time to begin 
forcing the former must be regulated by the time at 
which those in pots have been started. If they are 
started at the new year, the fig-house proper should 
be started in about eight or ten weeks after. 
/ 

INSECTS AND DISEASES. 

Red -spider and thrips are the chief insects that 
infest the foliage of the fig. The former is sure to 
attack the trees if they are kept too dry at the root 
and the syringe not freely used, but it rarely becomes 
formidable when they are sufficiently supplied with 
moisture. Thrips must be kept in check by occa- 
sional fumigations with tobacco - smoke, but never 
when the fruit are ripe, as they will taste of the 



206 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

tobacco. Mealy-bug, when it gets on to fig-trees, is 
very troublesome. The best way to get rid of it is to 
scrub the trees with soapy water, and then syringe 
them with paraffin at the rate of a wine-glassful to a 
gallon of water, syringing well with clean water a few 
minutes after. 

The fig is comparatively free from diseases. I have 
seen trees affected with canker in one instance the 
cause was stagnant water about the roots for want of 
thorough draining. 

PACKING FIGS. 

To pack ripe figs to go safely to a distance requires 
great care. Tin boxes divided into compartments, as 
directed in the case of peaches, are indispensable, if 
the fruit are to be allowed to ripen and to be carried 
without mutilation. The compartments, of course, 
need not be so large as for peaches. Into each put 
some fine paper-shavings, then a layer of cotton wad- 
ding, and over the wadding a square of tissue-paper 
sufficiently large to come up the sides of the compart- 
ments to the top. Wrap each fruit in a tender dry 
vine-leaf and lay it in its place, covering it over with 
another leaf to keep the paper from contact with the 
fruit. Then double the tissue-paper over all, fill up 
with cotton wool, lay a little paper-shavings all over 
the surface of the box, and screw down as directed in 
the case of peaches. When figs have to be packed, it 
is best to gather the fruit before the juice begins to 
ooze out of them, but not till they rend slightly at 
the sides. 



, 207 



THE MELON. 



PERSIA is the acknowledged home of the melon (Cu- 
cumis melo), where it has been regarded for ages not 
as a luxury, but as one of the necessaries of life. It 
is the richest of all soft fleshy fruits. The date of its 
culture in Europe is so remote that the time of its 
introduction is not capable of being recorded. The 
Romans, as far back as the time of Tiberius who is 
said to have had a special liking for melons culti- 
vated them by means of artificial heat, from which it 
would appear that forcing was an art not unknown 
to the Romans. The cultivation of melons has been 
general in England since the middle of the sixteenth 
century. Although many of the varieties now in cul- 
tivation are very fine, they are not generally regarded 
such safe or wholesome fruits as to be liberally par- 
taken of in this cold climate. Many, however, are 
passionately fond of them ; and, to say the least of 
them, they are an interesting fruit to cultivate, and 
have a handsome appearance in the dessert. In too 
many instances, however, quality is sacrificed to ex- 
ternal appearance ; for often the more common-look- 
ing and smaller fruits are much superior in flavour to 
those that are large and handsome. 



208 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

The varieties of melons that have been and are now 
in cultivation may be said to be almost innumerable. 
So exceedingly simple and certain indeed so difficult 
of prevention where more than one variety are culti- 
vated in the same garden is their hybridisation, that 
every season is productive of fresh varieties in the 
majority of gardens. There are, however, three dis- 
tinct types, which are known as the scarlet-fleshed, 
the varieties of which have sprung from the more 
hardy Cantaloupe ; the green-fleshed, from the Egyp- 
tian green-fleshed ; and the white-fleshed, from the 
more tender Persian varieties. The green-fleshed are 
the least attractive in appearance, but are generally 
the best flavoured in this country. The scarlets have 
of late years had some excellent additions to their 
lists. Some of the white-fleshed are thin-skinned, 
finely flavoured, and handsome ; but to bring them to 
perfection requires more heat, and especially intense 
sunshine, than this country affords. According to the 
statements of travellers, there are melons in Bokhara 
and Turkestan which far surpass any cultivated in this 
country. But probably the intense sun and aridity 
of the atmosphere, with the attention paid to supply 
them liberally with water, may have more to do with 
their lusciousness and flavour than mere varieties ; 
and they are, besides, more exquisitely relished in 
these hot dry countries than in this comparatively 
cold and sunless latitude, where they can only be cul- 
tivated under glass, aided with artificial heat both in 
the soil and air. 

The chief improvement which has been effected in 
melon-culture during this generation may be said to 
consist in their being more generally cultivated in 
melon-houses, trained near the glass on wire trellises ; 



THE MELON. 2OQ 

and the fruit being thus raised off the soil and sus- 
pended in the air, places them in a position more 
conducive to good flavour than when cultivated on 
the dung-bed system. And setting the fruit is more 
certain on the trellis system than when the plants are 
trained on the surface of the soil and unaided by the 
drier heat of hot- water pipes. Very early and late 
crops are less precarious and troublesome than when 
the heat is dependent on' fermenting materials alone. 
Knowing that there are still plenty of gardeners and 
amateur growers all over the kingdom who have to 
raise their crops of melons by means of the old fer- 
menting dung-bed and frames, to make these directions 
as comprehensive as the circumstances demand, both 
systems will be treated of. South of the Humber, in 
England, very little preparation is required to produce 
a crop of melons in the hottest months of the year in 
pits and frames, which in the earlier part of the year 
are generally used for hardening off flower - garden 
plants, without the means of applying artificial heat. 
In the neighbourhood of London, I have regularly 
grown good crops by merely putting about a foot of 
half -decayed leaves or stable -manure in the frame 
under the soil. In the north, however, seasons of 
such sunlight and heat as would enable this to be 
effected without a little artificial heat do not often 
occur ; and in such localities it is always best to pre- 
pare accordingly, and to choose certainly not the most 
tender and uncertain varieties for summer culture in 
frames not supplied with fire-heat. 

Plenty of melons have, however, been ripened in 
May by means of hotbeds, common garden frames 
and pits, but not without much care and labour. For 
very early and late crops this old system is not now 

o 



2IO FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

to be recommended, in the case of any who can devote 
a few lights of a pit or house heated with hot water 
to the purpose, but can be successfully and with com- 
paratively little trouble adopted for the intermediate 
crops in the hottest part of the season. Therefore, to 
embrace all classes of growers, I will treat of both the 
dung-bed and the melon-house systems. 

GROWING MELONS IN DUNG-BEDS OR PITS. 

The preparations necessary for constructing a seed- 
bed for melons being the very same as for cucumbers, 
in connection with which we shall detail them, 
knowing that early cucumbers are more generally cul- 
tivated than very early melons, we will not now 
occupy space in giving the process here, but refer our 
readers to the chapter on cucumber -culture. With 
the same appliances as for cucumbers, the same sort 
of pits recommended for fruiting cucumbers in answers 
for melons ; and when they are fruited on an ordinary 
hotbed and frame, the heat is maintained in the same 
way as recommended in the case of the seed-bed for 
raising cucumber-plants. In fact, if melons and cu- 
cumber-plants are to be raised at the same time, the 
same frame answers for both. 

Although melon-culture by this means has often 
been commenced on the 1st of January, and fruit sent 
to table early in May, it is a task involving the most 
incessant watchfulness, and is attended with more or 
less of uncertainty unless the spring be unusually fine. 
Hence I do not recommend an earlier commencement 
than the 1st of February, from which time even it is 
not for a novice to carry out the various steps in the 
process. Indeed it can scarcely be considered a judi- 



THE MELON. 211 

clous direction of means and labour to commence so 
early without more certain appliances than ferment- 
ing material and common frames. However, as the 
mode of raising and general treatment of melons 
started thus early will meet the case of those who 
do not commence till later in the season, I will sup- 
pose, in order to meet all cases, an early start, and 
treat accordingly. 



SOWING THE SEED, AND MANAGEMENT OF YOUNG 
PLANTS. 

If possible, choose seed not older than three or four 
years, of some early good-constitutioned variety, and 
steep the seeds in water for twelve hours before sow- 
ing them. At the same time prepare the required 
number of 4-inch pots, by placing one crock over the 
hole in their bottoms, and half-filling them with pure 
moderately moist yellow loam, and place them in the 
seed-frame to warm the soil. Sow three or four seeds 
in each pot, covering them with a quarter of an inch 
of the loam, and do not water them for the present. 
They should be plunged so as to get a bottom-heat of 
about 85, and let the pots lean to the south, so that 
the young plants may get the sun when they peep 
through the soil. The temperature of the air should 
range from 72 to 75. In the case of fermenting 
beds the heat at night has to be chiefly regulated by 
the amount of covering over the glass, and by air- 
giving, which latter requires to be watchfully attended 
to, especially in fitful weather. As soon as the young 
seedlings come up and expand their seed-lobes, show- 
ing which are to be the two healthiest and dwarfest 
plants, remove the others, and mould up the stems 



212 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

with warm rather dry loam, filling up the pot with 
two earthings after the plants have grown above the 
rims of the pots. Very moist soil is apt to cause 
damping, especially in dull weather, when more vapour 
of necessity collects in the frame. It is very necessary 
to leave a little chink of air on the frame all night, 
especially when mild and damp ; but great care is 
required to prevent gusts of cold air from reaching the 
plants, and a screen of canvas should be suspended 
over the opening in cold windy weather. When the 
heat is more than 75 at uncovering time in the morn- 
ing, increase the air, but this must not be to such an 
extent as will prevent an increase of heat with sun to 
80 or 85 by day, and at covering-up time the amount 
of covering must be regulated by the temperature of 
the frame, and the weather. Nothing is so injurious 
to young melon-plants as an over-close moist atmo- 
sphere at night, with too much heat. It draws them 
up pale and weakly, and renders them less likely to 
bear exposure to sun by day, which is so desirable, 
except after a time of sunless weather, when a little 
shade is often needed on the first sunny day. 

Do not give any water so long as the soil remains 
moist, and until it becomes manifest that they are 
really in need of it; in watering, do not wet the leaves. 
Generally speaking, the soil remains sufficiently moist 
till they show their rough leaves, and it is much bet- 
ter that such should be the case for, with short sun- 
less days, water would only serve to weaken them, if 
it did not cause them to damp off altogether ; besides, 
in a drier soil they make a more numerous brood of 
active rootlets. 

The application of fresh warm linings must be pro- 
vided for by having a heap of fermenting material 



THE MELON. 213 

always ready. And air-giving, to keep the bed sweet 
and free from steam, must receive extra attention with 
the application of every fresh lining. 



TKAINING AND STOPPING. 

When the first rough leaf is expanded, and a lead- 
ing shoot is formed, the training of the plants must be 
determined by their subsequent treatment. If they are 
to be grown on a trellis raised a little above the soil 
in a brick pit, heated by fermenting material, their 
leaders must not be pinched, and of course the same 
is applicable to those that are to be fruited in more 
modern melon-houses, I may say that it also applies to 
what I consider the best way of planting and training 
them in an ordinary dung-frame. The common prac- 
tice in this latter case is to pinch out the leading 
shoot as soon as it is formed. This forces the plants 
to form several growths, which, when they have grown 
to 5 or 6 inches, and the pots are moderately filled 
with roots, renders the plants ready for being planted 
out in the fruiting -bed two in the centre of each 
light. Three shoots are trained from each plant the 
shoots of one to the back, and those of the other to 
the front of the frame, one shoot towards each corner, 
and the other to the middle of the light. These shoots 
are stopped when within 8 or 10 inches of the side of 
the frame, and the laterals which they throw out pro- 
duce the fruit. In this case the plants are twice 
stopped and of course twice checked. What I recom- 
mend in preference to this system is not to stop the 
plants at all, but to plant them out as soon as their 
leading shoot is about 6 inches long one pot with two 
plants to every two feet in length of the fruiting-bed 



214 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

the one plant to be trained due north and the other 
south, pinching off all attempts at lateral growth from 
the base of the plant at the seed-lobes, but allowing 
the leader to grow on unstopped, till it reaches within 
a foot of the side of the frame, when, if stopped, it will 
quickly throw out lateral growths with fruit, just the 
same as in the former case, the difference in favour 
of the latter way of training being that the single 
leader reaches the desired length sooner, consequently 
bears stopping, and forms fruiting laterals sooner than 
those plants stopped young, and brought away with 
three growths. Of course this once-stopping system 
requires nearly double the number of plants to fill a 
frame, but in all other respects it is the best for speedy 
fruiting. These two systems of planting and training 
must determine whether the plants are to be stopped 
when young ; and to obviate the necessity of referring 
again particularly to stopping, I will now explain that 
immediately the female blossoms with the embryo fruit 
appear, the lateral shoot must be stopped two joints 
beyond the fruit, after which the blossoms soon expand, 
the shoots and leaves rapidly increase in size, and it 
will be found that there will just be about enough of 
foliage thus produced to cover the whole bed. All 
late laterals must afterwards be pinched off, unless 
some be necessary to cover the surface of the soil, 
which is desirable ; but these should not be left on 
the fruit-bearing lateral, provided no harm occurs to 
the main leaves. 



SOIL AND PLANTING, ETC. 

Like most other fruit -bearing plants, the melon 
thrives best in loamy or calcareous soil rather adhe- 



THE MELON. 21 5 

sive than otherwise. The top 6 inches of an old 
pasture that has been stacked in the compost-yard 
for twelve months is to be preferred. For the pro- 
duction of early melons, in the comparative absence 
of sun, I do not recommend any addition of manure, 
especially on dung - beds, as melon - roots generally 
penetrate beyond the soil and feed on the manure 
and leaves of which the bed is composed. Neither 
do I recommend the soil for very early melons to be 
so retentive as is desirable for their summer culture. 
In preparing such soil for being put into the frames, 
the turfy portions of it should be broken up with the 
hand or with a spade, and the rough and fine portions 
well mixed together. Wire-worms are most destruc- 
tive to young melon-plants ; and if there be any in 
the soil, it should be carefully examined and the 
worms removed. As soon as the fruiting-bed has 
begun to heat, place a ridge of the soil 1 foot deep, 
about 2 feet wide at base, and tapering to 8 or 9 
inches at top, along the centre of the frame. The 
ridge should be pressed firmly with the hands as it 
is formed, but not beaten with a mallet, as is fre- 
quently the case, especially if it is heavy. On hot- 
beds such as are now being considered, it is a safe 
plan to place thin turfs, grassy side downwards, all 
the length and width of the ridge of soil. It pre- 
vents the likelihood of the roots of the plants being 
burned by too violent a heat. All the remaining 
surface of the bed should then be covered with 2 
inches of the loam, rather firmly pressed down, 
to prevent steam from escaping too freely into the 
frame. As soon as the temperature of the ridge of 
soil has risen to 80 or 85, and the plants are ready 
to plant as already referred to, let them be carefully 



2l6 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

turned out of their pots, and planted two in the 
centre of each light, if they are such as have been 
stopped when young ; but if not stopped, two every 
2 feet apart, placing them sufficiently deep in the 
soil to have the seed-leaves about half an inch clear 
above the surface. If the loam is moderately moist, 
the weather dull, and less air required, it will not be 
necessary to water the plants when planted, nor as 
long as they appear to prosper satisfactorily without 
it. The state of the weather must, however, deter- 
mine this. If the sun comes out brightly, and the 
plants show signs of drooping when the necessary air 
is on, let them be watered. Shading in all stages of 
melon-culture is an evil which should only be resorted 
to when the grower is compelled by bright sunshine 
after a time of dull weather, a state of things which, 
early in the season, must be carefully watched, for a 
half -hour's neglect will destroy the plants if the 
frame is not properly aired and shaded less air, 
of course, being required when shading is necessary. 
The bottom-heat, too, is apt to be dangerously in- 
creased with sunshine ; and as soon as it exceeds 
95, it is a safe plan to bore a row of holes along 
each side of the ridge to let the heat escape. 

MOULDING UP TEMPERATURE. 

After the plants fairly take with the soil and have 
begun to grow freely, look out for their roots at the 
side of the ridge. As soon as they appear, cover 
them with 2 inches of warm loam this to be re- 
peated as soon as the roots take possession of each 
successive layer. The original ridge, especially in 
the case of early melons, should be left a few inches 



THE MELON. 

higher than these additions of soil. The bed, by the 
time the final earthing-up is given, should slope to 
about 6 inches deep of soil at the sides of the frame. 
For later crops a greater depth is necessary, but for 
early crops this is enough. 

The night temperature, after the plants are planted, 
should range from 72 to 75, as near as that can be 
maintained. And, of course, as in the case of seed- 
beds, this has to be regulated and kept up by cover- 
ings, linings, and air- giving. Air -giving should be 
attended to by degrees, as the day progresses and 
sunshine strengthens ; and it requires to be taken off 
in the same careful way in the after-part of the day, 
shutting up with sun-heat at a temperature of 90, 
and especially while the heat of the frame is high 
after it is newly put up putting on a chink of air 
for the night, if they are good close frames or pits. 
In early spring it is seldom that much artificial mois- 
ture has to be made in the frame. This, of course, 
depends much on the amount of sunshine and air 
given; and the rule should be to prevent an arid 
atmosphere, or the surface of the soil from getting 
dry, by dewing it over with tepid water from a 
syringe at shutting-up time. It is seldom that much 
more watering than this is required with early crops 
until after the melons are set. 



IMPREGNATION, WATERING, ETC, 

The system of training and stopping already de- 
scribed (page 213) will have to be attended to as the 
plants extend themselves towards the sides of the 
frame. And if they are all stopped at one time, so 



2l8 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

much the better, because they are then almost sure 
to have the female blossoms expanded and ready for 
being impregnated at the same time, which is very 
desirable, as the frame requires to be kept dry and 
the plants not watered while the crop is being thus 
secured. As soon as the blooms are perfectly ex- 
panded, the pollen loose and powdery in the male 
tlower, remove from the latter the corolla and apply 
it to the centre of the female, giving it a turn round, 
and leaving it resting in the centre of the bloom. 
This simple operation should be performed in the 
middle of the day, when the sun is out and air on the 
frames, under which circumstances the pollen is most 
likely to be dry and effective. They must be daily 
examined and attended to in this way until a full 
crop is set. This is easily known by the blossoms 
shutting up, the fruit to which they are attached be- 
coming of a shining healthy hue, and swelling rapidly. 
If two plants are planted every 2 feet, as already 
recommended for early or indeed any crops, two fruit 
will be sufficient to each plant, which will yield eight 
fruit to every light, or 4 feet run of the frame. Of 
course, if more fruit are desired, they will not be so 
large and fine. Immediately the fruit are set, and it 
is evident they are swelling, the superfluous ones 
should be removed and the soil watered, as it 
generally is dry after the setting - time, and the 
rapidly swelling fruits make great demands on the 
plants. Let the water be soft rain or pond water, in 
all cases a few degrees warmer than the soil in the 
frame. It is very undesirable to be giving driblets 
of water at short intervals. Let each watering be 
thorough, so that it be the seldomer necessary. Gen- 
erally two waterings after they are set are sufficient to 



THE MELON. 

carry the fruit to maturity, as the surface of the "bed 
is completely shaded with foliage. No water should 
be given at this early season, after the fruits have 
ceased to increase in size, or they will be very apt to 
burst and be spoilt. Besides, much moisture in the 
soil is inimical to good flavour, and a flavourless 
melon is a very useless production. If they show any 
signs of suffering before the fruit begin to change 
colour, syringe the foliage and sides of the bed 
gently, in preference to giving a root-watering, but 
this must cease immediately there are the least signs 
of ripening. At all times avoid watering close to the 
collar of the plants. It is apt to cause damping and 
canker at the neck of the plant; and besides, the 
active roots are nearer the sides of the frame. As 
soon as the fruit are set, place a piece of tile or slate 
under each, to keep them off the damp soil; and, if 
possible, lay them on their crown, a position in which 
they are generally sent to table. If grown and 
ripened on their side, they are generally more or less 
disfigured. As soon as they are full grown, raise 
them on a pot or piece of smooth brick above the 
foliage, so that sun and air can play freely about them 
and ripen them well, taking care that they are placed 
so that water cannot gather about that portion of 
them resting on the tile. 

During bright weather in April and May, a gentle 
sprinkling overhead, when the fruits are swelling off, 
at shutting-up time, is very refreshing to them, and 
keeps up the necessary humidity of the atmosphere. 
This must be discontinued immediately the fruits 
begin to ripen. If a fruit or two should be required 
as early as possible, dry some clean fine sand and 
cover up the fruit with it. The sun shining on this 



220 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

covering of sand places the fruit within it in a higher 
temperature, and it matures more rapidly. 

When they have attained their full size, do not 
let the heat of the bed decline ; and as they give 
signs of colouring and ripening, which they often do 
suddenly, increase the air, but do not decrease the 
warmth. It is easily known when they are ripe by 
the aroma, and more correctly by the rind cracking 
round the union of the stem with the fruit. They 
are then ready to be detached from the plant and 
placed in a fruit-room to cool, after which they are 
ready for table. 

Such is the routine of melon-culture early in the 
season by means of dung-frames or pits. The same 
points of culture apply to their midsummer culture 
by the same means, only the conditions necessary are 
secured with much less attention and anxiety. More 
moisture in proportion to sun - heat and light is 
necessary, and in the heat of summer one barrow-load 
of well-rotted manure may be added to every five 
of loam. The loam itself may be somewhat heavier 
than for spring growth, and a depth equal to that 
recommended for the ridges namely, 1 foot put 
firmly all over the surface of the bed. 



CULTURE IN MELON -HOUSES TRAINED ON WIRES NEAR 
THE GLASS FORM OF HOUSE, DEPTH OF SOIL, ETC. 

In this case the first consideration is the shape and 
size of houses, as well as their aspect. And as in the 
case of the early forcing of all fruits either in winter, 
early spring, or autumn, lean-to houses with a due 
south aspect are decidedly the best for melons. For 



THE MELON. 221 

summer culture, span -roofed houses running north 
and south may be considered the best. I have, how- 
ever, no difficulty with summer and early autumn 
crops in the north aspect of houses running east and 
west. Indeed, the difference only consists in the 
desirable one, of the crop from those on the north 
forming a succession to those on the south aspect. 
This, however, only holds good in the case of those 
not planted before May, nor ripened after the middle 
of October. The best arrangement in the case of 
those who have only a melon- house of limited extent, 
and who at the same time desire to have melons 
continuously, say from the end of May to Novem- 
ber, is to produce their earliest and latest crops from 
the melon-house, and to fill up the interval with a 
summer supply from dung-frames or pits, in which 
case I decidedly advise the lean-to form, as shown 
and described in connection with cucumbers, p. 264. 
Where a supply is required only from July till the 
middle of October, the span-roofed house is best, and 
it is desirable to have it divided into three succes- 
sional compartments of equal proportions. Although 
I have succeeded in bringing on three successional 
crops in one long division perfectly well, yet these 
crops would be better in separate divisions, inasmuch as 
when the melons planted for the first and second crops 
are ripe, these compartments can be more successfully 
and conveniently used for anything else such, for in- 
stance, as tomatoes that have been grown in pots in 
the open air, and many other things besides. When 
in more than one compartment, the heating should be 
arranged so as to be able to heat sufficiently all at 
once, or to heat each separately ; and also that the 
bottom and top heat-supplying pipes can be worked 



222 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

independent of each other. Although great blunders 
have now and again been committed in glazing such 
houses with obscure glass, it need scarcely, at this 
period of horticulture, be necessary to warn against 
such glass in the case of all forcing-houses intended 
for tropical fruits. 

It will be seen from the section of the house I 
recommend, that the bed for the soil is 18 inches 
deep. This depth may not be necessary for very early 
and late forcing, but for crops in the heat of summer 
I recommend a depth of soil of from 12 to 14 inches, 
according as the loam may be lighter or more adhesive 
in texture ; and have a decided objection to laying 
the loam on the pavement without an intervening 
layer of at least 4 inches of broken bricks or stones, 
so as to let water escape freely from the soil, thus 
keeping it sweet and wholesome. I have always 
noticed that a body of close soil laid on smooth stone 
or wooden surfaces, without some material to act as 
drainage, becomes soured and inert next these sur- 
faces. The side ventilators, whether they be in the 
form of glass upright lights or wooden ventilators in 
the side walls, should have perforated zinc nailed 
over the openings, to moderate the entrance of cold 
air when such is required ; and the openings should 
be either directly under or opposite the hot-water 
pipes, so that the air may be heated in entering the 
house. Unless it be in summer weather, when the 
fruit are setting or ripening, I do not recommend front 
or side ventilation. My general aversion to very small 
houses, where a steady and high temperature has to 
be maintained, is as strong in the case of melons 
as in that of forcing vines and peaches ; and conse- 
quently I recommend something more extensive than 



V 

THE MELON. 223 

a place that can just be crept into, which is in every 
respect inconvenient and undesirable. 

I have recommended a greater depth of soil for 
melon-houses where the plants are more fully sur- 
rounded by light and air than in a dung-bed, for the 
same reason it should be a little richer, and certainly 
not less retentive. For summer crops I have always 
put all the soil required in the beds before the melons 
were planted. In the case of early crops in melon- 
houses, I recommend a mean between that for which 
directions have been given for dung-frames namely, 
to fill in the soil at three times as the roots extend. 



PREPARING THE PLANTS, PLANTING, ETC. 

Little need be added on preparing the plants for the 
melon -house trellis system of training, as the only 
difference between it and that recommended for the 
speedier fruiting in the dung-bed is, that in the melon- 
house they are trained to wires near the glass, and in 
the latter along the surface of the soil. As soon as 
plants in 4- or 5 -inch pots (I use the smaller for 
spring and the larger for summer* plants, having in 
this case a single plant in a pot) are 8 or 9 inches 
high, with the soil well occupied but not matted with 
roots, and the soil is warm in the beds, they are ready 
for planting. One plant every 2 feet is sufficient, but 
not too thick for this one-stem system of training. The 
plant should be put in perpendicular, with the first wire 
at the front or side of the house, and tied to a stake 
till it reaches the wire. In summer planting I always 
settle the soil about the balls with water at 85 to 
90 immediately they are planted. The balls being 



224 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

moderately moist when planted, I seldom find that 
shading is necessary, unless it be when a continuance 
of dull weather is succeeded by brilliant sunshine. 
Then a thin shade is applied, but only till the plants 
can do without it. When the hot-water pipes are in 
front and close to the plants, it is always best to 
screen each plant by a thin piece of board from the 
drying influence of the pipes, until they are fairly 
established. Another precaution in planting is to keep 
the plant raised above the general level of the bed, by 
placing a ring of smooth round stones, flints, or pieces 
of charcoal, about 6 inches in circumference, round 
the plant. This I recommend as a provision against 
the not unfrequent cankering or damping of the 
stems just at the surface of the soil, which when 
thus elevated, and not watered within the protecting 
circle, is not so likely to be troublesome. 



WATERING, ETC. 

It is a most difficult thing in all cases to give 
definite rules, as far as frequency or the reverse is 
concerned, for watering. In this case it must depend, 
as in nearly all others, on the state of the weather, 
and to some extent on the lightness or heaviness of 
the soil. I make it a rule to water melon-beds as 
seldom, but as thoroughly when required, as possible. 
Suffice it to say that melon-plants should never flag 
from over-dryness of the soil, nor the bed be allowed 
to crack; otherwise the plants and crop are sure to 
suffer : the foliage will get yellow and sickly, and 
become a prey to red -spider. With bottom - heat 
derived from hot - water pipes, the tendency of the 
soil to become dry is greater than on the dung-bed ; 



THE MELON. 22$ 

consequently more water is required, and the neces- 
sity for thorough soakings when it is supplied is more 
urgent. Except perhaps in the height of summer, 
two or three good waterings, with the ordinary sprink- 
lings before the fruit are set, and as many after that 
stage, are sufficient to bring the crop to maturity. As 
soon as the crop is set, I always mulch the surface of 
the bed with rather more than 1 inch of short manure, 
to prevent evaporation and the bed from cracking, and 
to nourish the crop. This is in all respects preferable 
to more frequent watering. After the fruit are all 
set, manure -water made of sheep or cow manure, 
applied alternately with guano at the rate of an ounce 
to every gallon of water, is beneficial. 



TEMPERATURE AND SYRINGING. 

The bottom-heat should range from 80 to 85, 
the temperature of the air in early spring at 70 at 
night, and be raised to 75 when the weather becomes 
more genial, and less fire-heat is required to keep the 
temperature up. With the sun-heat by day, a rise of 
10 to 15 may be allowed. The moisture of the air 
must be regulated according as the weather is bright 
or dull ; when bright, with frosty nights, the moisture 
must be greater than when dull, and sufficient to pre- 
vent the atmosphere from feeling dry on entering the 
house. Except when the plants are in bloom and set- 
ting, gentle syringings are more frequently required in 
melon -houses than in frames; and every afternoon, 
when the day is bright, and a maximum of air has 
been admitted, a gentle syringing is very refreshing 
to them. In the morning the walls and paths should 
be damped, but not the .plants themselves, as under 

p 



226 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

bright sun they are apt to suffer when moisture is 
hanging about the foliage. 



VENTILATION. 

Ventilation, in the earlier stages of their growth 
particularly, must be very carefully managed. Sudden 
draughts of cold air are to be avoided, and the tem- 
perature should never be allowed to reach its maxi- 
mum before air is given. It should be attended to 
by degrees till 12 o'clock, and gradually reduced as 
the sun declines in power. In dull mild weather 
avoid by all means keeping the house close and over- 
moist, under which circumstances the plants grow 
rapidly, with less consolidation, and therefore suffer, 
or require too much shading when the weather 
changes and becomes more bright. I am not an 
advocate for front or side ventilation early in the 
season, when there is a great difference between the 
internal and external temperatures. Top air under 
such circumstances is sufficient then to effect the 
change of air that is required. When the fruits are 
setting and ripening are the only times that I give 
front air, even in summer, unless the weather be 
exceptionally hot and calm. 

IMPREGNATION, TRAINING, AND STOPPING. 

The impregnation of the fruit requires the same at- 
tention in melon-houses as in frames, only the opera- 
tion is less frequently a failure. Indeed there is next 
to no uncertainty attending it, unless in the case of 
very early forcing, when the setting process is not 
quite so free. In training and stopping the plants I 



THE MELON. 22? 

generally adopt the close-stopping system that is, to 
restrict the growth of the plants within the limits of 
the allotted space for each by pinching the growths 
constantly at two joints beyond the fruit, and leaving 
those shoots from which fruit is not taken to grow 
sufficiently to cover the whole of the trellis or wires 
with foliage without being crowded. A different sys- 
tem is successfully pursued by others. The plants 
are allowed to grow more at will, and set the first 
fruit irrespective of their being simultaneous, or nearly 
so, over the whole plant. In this way a more ram- 
bling growth is allowed, and fruit set at intervals as 
they show themselves ; and thus fewer melons are 
ripened at once, but a longer succession is derived 
from one set of plants. In the case of those who 
have only a few lights to devote to melons, the prac- 
tice has much to recommend it. Where there is room 
for succession on the more restricted system, I confess 
to prefer seeing a good crop coming forward at once. 
Even when melons in one compartment are all set 
within a few days, it is singular the difference there 
is in the time of their ripening, and the succession 
they on that account keep up. 

VERY EARLY FORCING. 

Very early forcing is much more certain with good 
melon-houses than with dung-beds ; and in some cases 
the seed is sown the end of November, and the plants 
planted in the fruiting-house the first week of January. 
This, however, is not a practice to be recommended in 
the case of the inexperienced grower, for even with the 
best of appliances there is much careful balancing of 
circumstances required. But so early a start is an ex- 



228 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

ception, not the rule. In some cases these early crops 
are produced in pots. January and February may be 
more generally named as the times at which melon - 
culture even in melon-houses is commenced. All other 
things being equal, those which are started then ripen 
fruit in May and June, before which time the flavour 
of melons is only second-rate. Later in the season 
they of course come to maturity in less time. 

The remarks which have already been made regard- 
ing the ripening of the fruit need not be repeated here. 
Only I would just observe, that I do not practise the 
excessive drying at the root system in summer crops 
which is sometimes followed. I give more air, and 
allow the light to play freely about the fruit, but avoid 
starving them. Even if it did improve the flavour, 
such treatment would be against other fruits which 
have not just arrived at the finishing-point. And it 
is indispensable to quality in melons that the foliage 
be preserved intact till they perfect their crop. 

When grown trained to wires thus, the fruit should 
be supported as soon as they show that there is an 
undue strain upon the stem. This is an unnatural 
attitude for melons, and they require support. I pre- 
fer small square pieces of common garden-net or hexa- 
gon netting with a piece of cord, or, what is better, an 
elastic band at each corner, so that as the fruit ex- 
pands the support yields. Square pieces of porcelain 
have been used and recommended for this, but I have 
discontinued them, because moisture gathers more or 
less about the crown of the melon when it rests on 
such supports, and disfigures it. This does not apply 
to netting. 



THE MELON. 229 



VARIETIES. 

The varieties in cultivation are so numerous, and 
every district has its favourite varieties more or less 
peculiar to itself, that there is perhaps more difference 
of opinion and less recognition of any standard varie- 
ties among growers of the melon than in the case of 
any other fruit. From my own experience in widely 
different localities and soils, I am inclined to think 
that certain kinds do better in some districts than 
others. 

Varieties of Melons. 

Colston Bassett White-fleshed. 

* Gilbert's Improved Green-fleshed. 

* Dell's Hybrid Green-fleshed. 
Golden Queen Green- fleshed. 
Heckfield Hybrid Green-fleshed. 

Cox's Golden Gem Whitish-green-fleshed. 
Bailey's Green-fleshed Green-fleshed. 
Bromham Hall Green-fleshed. 

* Golden Perfection Green-fleshed. 

These varieties are all good, but if making choice of 
only three, I should choose those marked thus (*). 



INSECTS AND DISEASES. 

Green -fly, red-spider, and thrips infest the melon. 
The best way to destroy them is to sponge the leaves 
carefully with a soft sponge moistened with weak 
tobacco - water, immediately either or both of these 
pests appear. To smoke with tobacco severely enough 
to destroy is very apt to injure the edges of the tender 
leaves. In spring the syringe should be applied 
occasionally in bright afternoons at shutting-up time. 



230 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

Green-fly can be kept in check by the syringe also, 
and is easier killed than the thrip with moderate 
fumigations of tobacco-smoke. Melon-plants are af- 
fected with a corky-looking enlargement of the stem, 
generally called canker, just above the surface of the 
ground. Some varieties are more subject to this than 
others. The best preventive is to keep the soil about 
the collars of the plants a little higher than the bed, 
and to put some charcoal-dust round the stem, and not 
to apply water at that part. 



231 



THE STRAWBERRY. 



THE varieties of strawberries in cultivation have origin- 
ally sprung from several species of Fragaria. Those 
known as the pine varieties have originated from F. 
grandiftora, a native of Carolina ; the Hautbois have 
sprung from F. eliator, a native of England ; the Scar- 
lets from F. Virginiana, a native of Virginia. It was 
about the beginning of the sixteenth century that the 
scarlet varieties were introduced into this country, pre- 
vious to which it is supposed our own wood or wild 
strawberry was the only one available. 

The strawberry is a grateful and universally esteemed 
fruit. As a member of the dessert it is at all times 
most welcome, more especially in the spring of the 
year, when luscious fresh fruits are least plentiful and 
most expensive in the markets. The culture of the 
strawberry in pots for forcing is now very general in 
gardens of the most moderate pretensions, and the art 
of forcing it has become very perfect as compared with 
what I recollect it to have been. It is not now an 
uncommon thing, in the more extensive forcing estab- 
lishments, to force from three to six thousand pots 
annually. The strawberry is, however, one of those 



232 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

fruits which can be forced more or less by all who 
possess a glass-house or pit, it being a fruit that can 
be ripened in great perfection in almost any glass 
structure, without any artificial heat, a little before it 
is fit to gather in the garden quarters. 



THE BEST RUNNERS. 

To be successful in forcing the strawberry early, it 
is of very great importance to get young fresh plants 
established and well matured in pots early in the 
season. 

In the course of many years' successful practice, I 
have tried various ways of getting early healthy run- 
ners. Besides other methods I have allowed the pa- 
rent plants to produce young runners when being forced 
in March, April, and May. These have been rooted 
under glass in small pots, hardened off, and grown on 
in the usual way. Very small runners have been 
selected from outdoor plantations in autumn, and 
pricked off in light rich soil, and lifted and potted 
about midsummer. I have left the runners on those 
which ripened their fruit in April and May, planted 
out the parent plants, carefully preserving these run- 
ners, and layering the young plants produced in this 
way. The last named is the best of these three 
methods, and plenty of first-rate plants for forcing 
are so produced. But the best way that I have ever 
adopted, either in England or Scotland, is to make a 
plantation of the best runners that can be had in Sep- 
tember from those plants that were forced the pre- 
vious spring. These young plants were planted ex- 
pressly for the purpose of producing fine strong early 
runners for potting the following summer. 



THE STRAWBERRY. 233 

This autumn plantation should be made in a warm 
situation, in a rather light, well manured and worked 
soil, in lines 2 feet apart, and only 6 inches apart in 
the line. This close planting I adopted simply for 
the sake of procuring the necessary stock for potting 
in the smallest and most convenient space, it being 
much more convenient to lay and attend to them after 
they are laid than when scattered over a greater space. 
These autumn -planted runners in their turn throw 
out beautiful strong runners early in the season, and 
these are chosen for the production of plants for early 
forcing the following season. In ordinary seasons 
they are ready to lay the second week of June, which 
is earlier than ever I have been able to get as fine 
runners from plants forced and planted out in spring ; 
and in ordinary cases older plantations of strawberries 
produce " spindly " runners that never make such fine 
plants as those produced by the method described. 

PREPARING RUNNERS FOR THEIR FRUITING-POTS. 

In preparing the young runners for their fruiting- 
pots, I have also tried various ways such as spread- 
ing equal proportions of loam and leaf -mould between 
the rows, and laying them in it without pots. At 
other times I have crocked and filled the fruiting-pots 
with soil, and laid the runners at once into them. 
But while both these methods can be adopted with 
success, I prefer, as soon as the young plants begin 
to push out roots, to lay them in 3 -inch pots firmly 
filled with two parts friable loam and one part of 
leaf- mould. These pots are plunged between the rows 
of strawberries, a single runner laid on each pot and 
gently pressed into the soil, taking care not to bury 



234 FRUIT. CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

the heart of the young plant. A small stone is then 
laid on the stem immediately behind the young plant, 
to keep it firmly in its place. A peg of wood answers 
the same purpose, but the placing of the stone is fully 
more convenient, and it serves to conserve moisture 
in dry weather. All the runners should be stopped 
beyond the plant laid, and in dry weather they require 
to be well watered every afternoon. Managed in this 
way, they can be removed expedition sly, and without 
the least check, when well rooted and ready to be put 
into their fruiting -pots, which is generally in about 
three or four weeks after they are laid. If they are 
required for ripening fruit, say in the early part of 
March, they are most satisfactory when shifted into 
their fruiting -pots between the first and middle of 
July a few days either earlier or later are not of 
much importance. The guiding-point should be the 
condition of the young plants. They should be well 
rooted, without being what gardeners called matted. 
A safe criterion is to shift them just as soon as they 
are sufficiently rooted to enable them to be potted 
without the ball being broken. When laid in fine 
soil without pots, they should be lifted and potted 
when sufficiently rooted to make them easily lifted 
with balls and without mutilating their roots. 



SOIL AND POTTING, ETC. 

The size of the fruiting-pots is of much importance : 
5- and 6 -inch pots I have always found most satisfac- 
tory. In the case of all plants from which ripe fruit are 
to be produced by the middle of March, 5 -inch pots are 
to be preferred. For those to be forced later in the 
season, pots 1 inch or at most 2 inches larger are to be 



THE STRAWBERRY. 235 

recommended. In the smaller size, when forced early 
they throw up their bloom-stalks more strongly, set 
better, and yield as large fruit as in larger sizes. 
The larger size is better later in the season, when 
the plants require much more attention in watering. 
I have tried experiments by selecting some of the 
very finest plants and shifting them into 8 -inch pots, 
but the result was never satisfactory. For any plant 
to force well, it is of the first importance to have the 
pot thoroughly filled with roots ; and in larger pots 
than those recommended, this condition is more diffi- 
cult of attainment. . The pots should either be new 
from the pottery, or thoroughly washed and dry. And 
they should be carefully crocked ; for although the 
strawberry requires much moisture, it never thrives in 
a soured soil or with stagnant water. There should 
be an inch of small crocks in the bottom of the pots, 
and over all a little of the fibry part of the soil. 

The selection of soil with which to pot or shift into 
the fruiting-pots is of much importance. Presuming 
that one-third of the plants are to be put into 5 -inch 
pots for early forcing, choose for them a friable hazelly 
loam, and mix with every three barrow-loads of it one 
of thoroughly decomposed manure, consisting of an 
old hot or mushroom bed in a dry state, and sifted 
through a J-inch sieve, so that it can be well incor- 
porated with the loam. To every four barrow-loads 
of this add an 8 -inch potful of bone-meal; mix the 
whole well ; and instead of removing any of the fibry 
part of the loam, grind every morsel of it through a 
f -inch sieve, as large lumps of it become inconvenient 
in shifting into such small pots ; moreover, the fibre 
gets more completely equalised and incorporated with 
the general compost. If a good, rather light loam 



236 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

cannot be procured for these early plants, a heavier 
loam can be lightened by adding a small portion of 
clean gritty sand, or, what is preferable, some finely 
sifted old mortar or old plaster -lime. For those 
intended to ripen fruit from the beginning of April 
onwards to the time of outdoor strawberries, 6- or 
7-inch pots are to be preferred, and also a loam of a 
rather more holding or adhesive character, but mixed 
with the same manurial ingredients recommended for 
the early plants ; a more retentive soil being more 
suitable for the sunnier months of April and May, 
when more moisture is required. 

In shifting the plants, the soil should be firmly 
packed round the balls, so as to get as much of it into 
the space as possible, and also to prevent the too free 
escape of water between the ball and sides of the pot. 
Care should be taken that the hearts of the plants are 
not immersed in the soil ; and there should be at least 
a quarter of an inch of the pot left unfilled up, so that 
the watering can be effectually done. 

When shifted, they should be thoroughly watered 
through a rose, and allowed to stand in some position 
where they can escape the mid-day sun for a few days. 
Then remove them to some warm place where they 
can have the full sun all day, and at the same time 
be sheltered from high winds, which would lash and 
injure the foliage. I have generally placed the plants 
on a raised trellis-work, in order to prevent worms 
from getting into the pots, and the plants from root- 
ing through into the ground. This precaution in the 
latter case is very necessary ; for if placed on the 
ground they are sure to root through, and if left to 
themselves the roots will to a great extent desert 
the pots. In the case of the smaller pots, which 



THE STRAWBERRY. 237 

dry most rapidly, it is well to pack the space 
between them with half-decomposed leaves or moss. 
In placing them, they should be quite level, and 
have as much room as will allow each plant to 
stand quite clear of its fellow. 

Watering must now be carefully attended to. The 
pots being efficiently drained, and the soil firmly 
packed in them, there is little fear of over-watering 
them so long as they continue in active growth. In 
very hot weather they may require watering morning 
and afternoon ; and on the evenings of very warm 
days a syringing overhead, just as the sun is leaving 
them, is very refreshing to them. But the syringing 
must be discontinued when the dews of autumn nights 
set in. As soon as the roots reach the sides and 
bottoms of the pots, liquid manure may be given 
every other day. Clear soot-water, guano, sheep or 
deer's manure water, are all excellent for strawberries. 
The principal point in applying water is to make sure 
that the whole ball is thoroughly soaked ; and in apply- 
ing liquid manures, not to slop it about the foliage, 
on which it leaves more or less of a sediment. Should 
the plants break away into several weaker crowns, 
remove all but the strongest as soon as this tendency is 
observed : one good strong crown in a pot is much 
better than several weaker ones. 

Do not allow a weed to appear in the pots ; prevent 
every attempt at runner-making ; and occasionally stir 
the surface of the soil, adding a light sprinkling of fine 
soil, in which is mixed a little Standen's manure or 
soot, and press all firmly down again. Under such 
treatment, it will be found, on turning them out of 
their pots by the end of September, that the balls 
appear literally roots, and nothing else ; so much so, 



238 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

that they might be thrown across the garden without 
the ball being broken. The crowns will be firm, well 
developed, like the end of a man's thumb, the foot- 
stalks of the leaves strong and short, supporting broad, 
dark -green, leathery leaves, sure criterions of the 
plants being in the best possible condition for forcing 
the following spring. 

Should the weather be very wet in October, I would 
recommend that the plants be placed in cold frames, 
where they can be protected by glass from continuous 
rains, and fully exposed when the weather is fine. 
When this cannot be done, lay them down on their 
sides rather than expose them to continuous rains. 
By the end of October they will have completed their 
season's growth, and the object in regard to them 
now is to rest them, and protect them in a cool state 
from heavy rains and hard frost. Where cold frames 
covered with glass can be spared for them, perhaps 
they are best stored in them, having the pots plunged 
in ashes, half-decayed leaves, or sawdust. They should 
have plenty of air on all favourable opportunities ; and 
during severe frost a single mat or a little dry straw 
thrown over the glass is protection sufficient. When 
cold frames or any cool place under glass could not 
be spared, I have kept them perfectly safe by build- 
ing them into ridges, laying one row on their sides 
above the other, and packing between and round the 
pots with ashes or sawdust. In this way they escape 
rains, and are preserved from getting dry or excited, 
and in times of severe frosts are easily covered with 
mats of straw, easily uncovered in fine weather, and 
as easily got at when required for forcing. Wher- 
ever wintered, the soil should never be allowed to get 
dry, or the roots will suffer severely. 



THE STRAWBERRY. 239 

STRAWBERRY- HOUSE. 

Having prepared strawberry-plants in pots for forc- 
ing, the next chief consideration is a suitable place in 
which to force them. The strawberry is in this re- 
spect, except in comparatively few garden establish- 
ments, left unprovided for in any special way, and 
many thousand plants are forced without what may be 
termed a strawberry-house. Indeed it is a subject so 
accommodating that it can be forced in the pit, the 
peach-house, the vinery, and the pinery, or by the aid 
of all these combined. At the same time, where there 
are many to be fruited annually, a house entirely de- 
voted to themselves is not only better for them, but 
for the other plants and fruits with which they liave 
so frequently to be accommodated in the same struc- 
ture. Moreover, a strawberry -house can be so ar- 
ranged as to answer perfectly well for other things 
after the season of strawberry-forcing is over. Fig. 
21 is what I recommend as a very suitable and 
efficient strawberry -house. The bed in front, sup- 
plied with bottom-heat, is an excellent place for start- 
ing early strawberries. The back stage is supposed 
to be movable, if it should be considered necessary, so 
that, after the strawberry season is over, cucumbers, 
melons, and tomatoes, or young vines in fact, many 
things can be grown in the back bed after the re- 
moval of the stage. In the early part of the season, 
the bed under the stage is available for rhubarb and 
seakale if necessary, or the whole house may be de- 
voted to plant-growing throughout the summer, and 
until required again for strawberries. The command 
of such a house for strawberries allows the gardener 
to give them the exact treatment required. Where 



240 



FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 



there are many grown, it would be best to have two 
divisions of such a house the one for starting them, 
and the other for fruiting them in. I shall, however, 




FIG. 21. 



treat of strawberry-forcing in a general way, as if no 
such house were at command, and as being most likely 
to meet the case of the greatest number of readers. 



FORCING. 

For very early forcing, it is of much importance to 
aid them with a gentle bottom-heat, which can easily 
be effected by plunging them in a bed of leaves or tan 
near the glass, where the bottom-heat ranges about 
75; and when they have started into growth, they 
can then be moved to shelves near the glass in early 



THE STRAWBERRY. 241 

started vineries and peach-houses, where no special 
house for them exists, and a succession of plants can 
take their place in the pit. 

The time when ripe strawberries are required must 
of course regulate the time when forcing should begin. 
It generally takes three months from the time the 
plants are started till the fruit is ripe. When forc- 
ing is commenced very early, say the middle of Novem- 
ber, a week or 14 days more must be taken into the 
count. The best variety to begin with thus early is 
Black Prince ; and plants of it introduced into heat 
about the 14th November will ripen their fruit the 
last week of February. Keen's Seedling, the next best 
early variety, takes 10 days more. Unless, however, 
there be a large stock of plants and early crops are 
imperative, it is not desirable to begin forcing so 
early. There is a degree of uncertainty and loss, gen- 
erally amounting to nearly one-half the plants, in the 
case of those set agoing in November. A full half of 
the plants cannot be expected to set anything like a 
crop of strawberries. In fact, those that are started 
before the last week of December, are about the most 
uncertain crop that can be attempted, especially where 
there is no well-appointed strawberry-house. Under 
ordinary circumstances, I do not recommend firing to 
begin before January, not only on account of the uncer- 
tainty of the produce, but because strawberries ripened 
in comparatively sunless weather and a close atmosphere 
are not very well flavoured. 

I will suppose the 1st of January to have arrived, 
the time when the earliest are, in the majority of cases, 
placed in heat. Let the required number of the best 
plants in 5 -inch pots be selected, all the brown and 
much-spotted leaves picked off them, their pots washed 

Q 



242 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

clean, and if the roots appear rather bare, firmly top- 
dress them with a little fine loam and well-decayed 
cow-manure in equal parts. If, as has been already 
recommended, a light pit with a bed of warm leaves is 
at command, plunge the pots in it, so that they may 
get a slight degree of bottom-heat. Keep the night 
temperature ranging from 50 to 55, according as the 
weather is cold or mild ; with sun-heat, 8 or 10 more 
may be allowed. A close stagnant atmosphere is most 
antagonistic to the strawberry, consequently give more 
or less air every day, leaving a very little on all night 
when mild. Being plunged in moist leaves, watering 
will not be often required, but it must be attended to 
before the plants get too dry, so as just to keep the 
soil moist without being wet. As soon as ever the 
blooms can be discerned in the centres of the crowns, 
increase the heat a few degrees, but do not exceed 60 
in mild weather. When the trusses are distinctly 
projected, remove the plants to a shelf near the glass 
in any structure where the night temperature ranges 
60, with 10 more by day. Avoid putting them 
where they will be subject to currents of cold air, or 
where, on the other hand, the atmosphere is close and 
very moist, such as a plant-stove. A peach-house or 
vinery is the best place, in the absence of a straw- 
berry-house. 

SETTING AND THINNING THE FRUIT, ETC. 

When they begin to open their blooms, be careful not 
to be lavish with fire-heat should the weather be cold 
and harsh. Under such circumstances rather let the 
night temperature recede to 55; and to prevent damp 
counteracting the process of fertilisation, leave a little 



THE STRAWBERRY. 243 

air constantly on the house, and go over all the blooms 
that are ready and fertilise them with a camel-hair 
brush at mid-day. Those which throw their blooms up 
boldly above the foliage will be found to set freely ; 
while those that do not, will not be so certain. The 
conditions most conducive to a successful set early in 
the season are, as much light as possible, a regular 
supply of fresh air, a night temperature not rising above 
60 nor receding below 55, a moderately dry atmo- 
sphere, and just sufficient water at the roots to keep the 
plants in healthy action. Anything like stagnation of 
water about the roots of strawberries when in bloom is 
most injurious, and consequently the pots should never 
be placed in saucers. 

When the fruit are set and about the size of peas, 
the chief difficulty is past. They may then have the 
temperature ranging from 60 to 65, with 10 or 15 
more with sun-heat. Water will be required more 
liberally and frequently at the roots. Unless for the 
later crops, when water is consumed with great rapidity, 
never place the pots in saucers full of water. The best 
way in all respects is either to cut pieces of turf and 
lay below them on the shelves into them the plants 
root and derive nourishment or saucers with holes in 
them to let the water escape, filled with half loam and 
half old mushroom-bed manure, can be placed under 
them with equally nourishing results. The finest fruit 
I have ever grown in pots had 6 -inch pots half filled 
with rich fresh soil placed under them, and into these 
they sent their feeders en masse. And the pots being 
so far immersed in others got protection from drying 
currents of air and sunshine. 

A close stagnant atmosphere in dull weather must be 
avoided after the fruit are set, otherwise they are apt 



244 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

to damp off or rot. A little air night and day at the 
highest part of the house should be constantly attended 
to. As the fruit swell and give every indication of a 
heavy crop, thin off all the smallest, leaving ten or 
twelve of the best-looking fruit. Every alternate time 
of watering give either soot, guano, or dung water till 
they show signs of colouring, when pure water only 
must be given. At all times the water should be 
milk- warm, and either rain or soft pond water. When 
practicable, I have generally moved the plants into 
another house where the air has been drier when the 
fruit were nearly ready to gather. A few days in such 
a place heightens the flavour and colour of the fruit, 
and it also makes room for bringing on a succession 
of plants. At all events, more and drier air should, if 
possible, be afforded them when colouring. 

As the season advances, I need scarcely say that the 
precautions enforced above are not so imperative in the 
case of succession and late crops ; still they must be 
adhered to, or results will be more or less uncertain. 
Those that ripen after the month of April can be freely 
removed to cooler and more airy places, in order to 
make them higher coloured and better flavoured. And 
such as ripen the end of May and June, before outdoor 
fruit are ripe, do well when removed to cold frames 
when colouring. In these they can have plenty of air 
by tilting the lights up back and front, or even having 
the frame supported up off the ground, so that a cur- 
rent of air can play freely about them. When the 
greater part of the fruit are colouring, they should not 
have more water than is just enough to keep the -plants 
from drooping. The flavour is thus improved. 



THE STRAWBERRY. 245 

INSECTS TO WHICH THEY ARE SUBJECT. 

Green-fly and red-spider are very apt to attack straw- 
berry-plants when subject to fire-heat, especially in 
April and May ; and to prevent red-spider gaining 
a footing, they require to be well syringed every fine 
afternoon after the fruit are set. And to the same 
end all checks for want of sufficient water must be 
guarded against. Green-fly is easily prevented and 
got rid of by fumigating with tobacco, but it must 
never be done when they are in bloom. It is a good 
plan always to smoke before the blooms open. One 
of the most forcible reasons against growing them in 
peach-houses and vineries, especially in the latter part 
of the season, is the frequency with which they breed 
red-spider, which soon extends to the peaches and vines. 
Many gardeners are, however, obliged to adhere to the 
practice, on account of the numbers of plants that have 
now to be reared under glass, and for want of a straw- 
berry pit or house. That good strawberries are pro- 
duced thus is beyond a question ; but to ripen straw- 
berries on the top shelves of vineries, the vines must 
not be allowed to run up right to the top of the house 
on account of the amount of shade which they throw 
over the strawberries, and under the influence of which 
they do not thrivB. So that in all cases where a division 
of glass can be devoted to strawberries, it is much to 
be preferred. 

STRAWBERRIES IN A GREENHOUSE OR PIT. 

The amateur who pursues horticulture more as a 
pastime and a pleasure, and who may only possess a 
pit or greenhouse from which frost is excluded, can, 



246 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

if he fancies them, grow a few dozen strawberries on 
the shelves near the glass, where he can get several 
dishes before they can be gathered out of doors. The 
same can be accomplished in a cold frame, where sun- 
heat can be taken advantage of, by being shut up 
early in the afternoons in April and May, and covered 
at night to prevent the heat from declining so low as 
in uncovered frames. A well -fruited pot of straw- 
berries makes a most pleasing dinner-table plant, with 
its green massive leaves and tempting fruit. 

TYING UP THE FRUIT-STALKS, ETC. 

Some of those varieties, such as President and 
British Queen, which throw up their fruit on long 
and more slender footstalks, require to have their 
trusses supported, otherwise, as the fruit become 
heavy, they weigh down the stem, and it not unfre- 
quently gets bent and bruised on the edge of the 
pot, and the fruit is thereby hindered from swelling 
so well. Where they are grown in rows on shelves, 
a good way of supporting them is to fix short stout 
stakes in every fourth or sixth pot, and run a piece of 
thick soft twine along, on which the trusses can rest ; 
or each truss can be tied to a slender stake. 

Immediately the fruit are all gathered, the plants 
should be removed to cold frames or to some sheltered 
corner, where they can be protected from spring 
frosts, and hardened off preparatory to their being 
planted out for bearing outdoor crops, which they 
produce in first-rate style the following summer, and 
a few that same autumn. 



THE STRAWBERRY. 247 

PACKING RIPE STRAWBERRIES FOR CARRYING. 

In these days of steam and express trains, it not 
unfrequently happens that forced strawberries have to 
be sent hundreds of miles to the dessert-table, and 
much of their safe and successful transit depends on 
the manner in which they are packed. I have been 
in the habit of sending them from Scotland to London 
three times weekly, and by the following method of 
packing they have been received without a bruise : 
They were packed in square boxes 4 inches deep, 
divided into four compartments. In the bottom of 
each division was placed a layer of fine paper-shavings, 
then a layer of wadding, and over the wadding a sheet 
of soft, pliable tissue-paper, all firmly pressed down, the 
one upon the other. On this foundation, with a soft, 
fresh strawberry-leaf beneath and between each fruit, 
the strawberries were laid. Over them were placed 
soft, young vine-leaves, then a sheet of tissue-paper, 
and then wadding and paper-shavings enough to fill 
the box as firmly as possible without bruising the fruit, 
as their safe carriage depends on their being packed 
sufficiently close and firm to prevent their moving 
when the box is moved. This is what may be con- 
sidered an extra-careful way of packing. Generally 
they are packed in round or square boxes or tins, 
with just leaves below and above them ; and with 
ordinary usage they carry very well. But fruits sent 
by rail are often roughly handled ; and when fine fruit 
are produced after months of careful culture, careful 
packing must be regarded as the gardener's finishing- 
touch. The boxes in which they are packed should 
be made of thin deal or tin, in which case two or 



248 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

three storeys or layers of them may be packed into a 
stronger box. 



PREPARING FRUIT FOR EXHIBITION. 

In preparing fruit for exhibition, a great amount of 
careful and skilful generalship is required. Generally 
speaking, the grower who has a large number of plants 
to gather from on an exhibition eve, has a very great 
advantage over the grower with only a few scores of 
pots, more so than in the case of any other fruit. For 
with the most careful thinning, it is well known to 
every strawberry-forcer that each plant has generally 
one or two very large fruits, while the remainder are 
considerably less. Consequently the more numerous 
the plants ripening fruit at one time, the more nu- 
merous will be the monster strawberries. But size is 
not all on the exhibition-table ; colour and flavour are 
also very important points, which can only be attained 
by free exposure to light and dry warm air. If 
strawberries are grown with the intention of their 
being prize-takers, a smaller number of fruit should 
be allowed to each plant. Some may require being 
retarded in cooler houses so as to keep back the first 
and largest berries ; others may require a contrary 
treatment to bring them forward to match the retard- 
ed ones. 

Most growers have their own way of setting up or 
dishing for exhibition. The most effective dish of 
strawberries I ever remember of were laid singly in a 
flat square basket, filled nearly to the top with wad- 
ding and covered with tissue-paper. On this surface 
the strawberries were laid with a small space between 
each. Splendid fruits of any description can never 



THE STRAWBERRY. 249 

have too much of each fruit seen, and in this way 
the eye takes in more of the individual fruits than 
when dished in the usual way in a semi-globular 
form, the fruit laid in circles with a strawberry-leaf 
between each, the oute*r row of fruits being the least 
and those in the centre of the basket the largest. 



VAEIETIES FOR FORCING. 

It is not always easy to pronounce dogmatically 
on the varieties that are best for forcing ; I have 
experimented with scores of sorts, and came to the 
conclusion that there are not very many which possess 
all the qualities which fit them for forcing, and early 
forcing in particular. Keen's Seedling was till re- 
cently more extensively grown than any other sort, 
and more generally accounted the best to grow for 
a general crop. It, however, in some localities has 
proved a failure ; but so far as I am aware this is 
the exception, not the rule. Vicomtesse Hericart de 
Thury is now very extensively used. It is prolific 
and of good quality. Black Prince is a most prolific 
bearer, and for very early forcing is decidedly the most 
certain, from its free blooming and setting qualities. 
I can confidently recommend for the earliest crops 
i.e., to ripen in early part of March Black Prince, 
Underbill's Sir Harry, Keen's Seedling, Vicomtesse 
Hericart de Thury, and La Grosse Sucre*e to succeed 
it. Prince of Wales is an excellent second or rather 
. third early in the order of these three. Tor the latest 
crops nothing can equal in flavour the old British 
Queen ; but it is not very prolific, and does not suc- 
ceed well in many soils. Sir Charles Napier forces 
well, is large and showy, but rather acid. President 



250 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

is an excellent strawberry, forces well and sets re- 
markably free. La Marguerite and Victoria are also 
very showy varieties. But had I to force many 
thousands of plants, I would still cling to the old 
favourites namely, Black Prince, Keen's Seedling, 
and Vicomtesse Hericart de Thury, the latter two 
predominating. Then for late sorts nothing can be 
mere satisfactory than Sir Charles Napier, President, 
and, where it does well, British Queen. Those who 
may fancy a few very large fruits should grow Dr 
Hogg and James Yeitch, but their size is about all the 
good quality they possess. I have, however, proved 
that localities, or rather soils, influence strawberries 
very much, some succeeding where others fail, and 
vice versd. 



H 
251 



THE CUCUMBER. 



THE cucumber (Cucumis sativa) is said by some horti- 
cultural writers to be a native of the East Indies. It 
has, however, been cultivated and esteemed in Africa, 
from a very early period ; and in the complaint of the 
Israelites to Moses in the wilderness, they singularly 
enough associated their appreciation of the cucumber 
with the fish, which they " freely " ate in Egypt. Fish 
and cucumbers are now much appreciated together. 
The very earliest records of English horticulture em- 
brace the cucumber, and in Edward III.'s time it was 
common, but was afterwards comparatively neglected 
till the time of Henry VIII.; and it was the middle of 
the seventeenth century before its cultivation became 
general. In England it is very much more esteemed 
by the mass of the population than in Scotland. In 
some parts of Bedfordshire Sandy, for instance it 
is cultivated in the open air by thousand of bushels, 
and supplied to pickle-manufacturers for pickling. 

At certain seasons of the year the cucumber is of 
the easiest possible cultivation, requiring next to no 
attention or skill. This applies to the summer months. 
But to supply cucumbers every day from November 



252 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

till June is a matter that requires great attention and 
care. When a supply is required the whole year 
round, the comparative ease and certainty with which 
it can be accomplished depends of course to a great 
extent on the appliances at command for such a pur- 
pose. "When dependent for heat on the cumbrous and 
untidy dung-bed or linings, it is a somewhat precarious 
and trying task. On the other hand, with a well-con- 
structed cucumber-house, efficiently heated with hot 
water, a constant supply can with certainty be main- 
tained, and with much less labour than with dung- 
linings alone. Considering, however, that very many 
growers have yet nothing more advanced than a brick 
pit, heated by means of fermenting stable-litter, and, 
where they can be had, leaves, to supply cucumbers, 
my intention is to give practical directions for a supply 
of cucumbers, say from March till November, by such 
means, as well as to make some remarks on their mid- 
winter growth in cucumber -houses heated by hot- 
water pipes. I may, however, remark, that it is not 
desired to communicate any information that might 
be the cause of inducing any to provide at this period 
of gardening practice and appliances nothing better 
than dung-heated pits for the growth of cucumbers 
from October till the end of June ; for although I and 
many more have bridged this period of the year with 
cucumbers by means of fermenting materials alone, it 
cannot now be regarded in any other light than one 
of the best illustrations of being "penny wise and 
pound foolish." 

THE SEED-BED. 

It is, then, supposed that cucumbers are desired in 
early spring, say March. As the first step in the pro- 



THE CUCUMBER. 253 

cess, it is necessary to get a quantity of stable-litter, 
and, if possible, good oak-leaves, well mixed together, 
in the first week of December. These materials should 
be shaken up lightly into a compact heap. And in 
order to sweat or sweeten it, it will require to be turned 
over at intervals of four or five days, until it has 
parted with its rank ammoniacal vapours, and assumed 
a tanned colour. It is then ready to be formed into 
a hotbed, for which a well- sheltered site open to the 
south should be chosen. The bed should be 5 feet 
high at the back, 4 feet at front, and 2 feet longer and 
wider than the frame that is to be placed on it. Sup- 
posing that cucumber-plants, and perhaps a few early 
odds and ends, are all that are to be raised in the bed, 
one light box of the ordinary size will be sufficient. 
In building the bed, shake up the material well, lay it 
on in regular layers, and beat it well down with the 
back of the fork as the work proceeds, but do not 
tramp it. When of the requisite height, place the 
frame over it at once, and lay 6 inches of finely 
pounded charcoal, sifted coal -ashes, or sawdust I 
prefer the first named over the surface of the bed 
inside the frame. Put on the light, and protect the 
sides of the bed and frame itself from cold searching 
winds and rains, which would soon cool it, and keep 
the frame closed and covered up till the heat begins to 
rise. Then give air by day, to let any rank vapour 
that may arise from the manure escape. 

SOWING THE SEEDS, AND TREATMENT OF THE 
YOUNG PLANTS. 

As soon as the heat reaches 70, and the atmosphere 
is sweet, soak the cucumber-seeds in water for twelve 



254 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

hours before sowing them. I prefer sowing the seeds 
in moderately drained 4 -inch pots, in a compost of 
two parts light friable loam and one part leaf-mould. 
With this fill the pots half full, sow two seeds in each, 
covering them to the depth of half an inch ; and do 
not give any water for the present. Plunge the pots 
only one-half their depth in the bed, for the bottom- 
heat will be strong at first. If watered and plunged 
deeply in the strong heat, germination is forced on too 
quickly, and the result is a pale and weakly seedling. 
In placing the pots, let them incline towards the south, 
so that when the sun does shine it may reach the 
young plants as soon as they are through the soil; and 
to the same end see that the glass is kept clean, for light 
at this season is of first-rate importance. When the 
weather is mild, uncover the glass the first thing in 
the morning, but cover up in the evening before the 
temperature recedes too much. Give more or less air 
night and day, according to the state of the weather, 
ranging the heat about 70. When the air is frosty, 
hang a piece of canvas or woollen netting over the back 
of the frame when air is on, so as to prevent currents 
of cold air. 

I have always found that the genial heat of the 
frame and the absence of sunshine at this season render 
watering unnecessary, and in fact injurious, until the 
plants have expanded their first rough leaves. When 
the young plants have expanded their seed-lobes and 
grown to the level of the mouth of the pots, earth 
them up an inch or so with the same compost in 
which they were sown, warmed to the temperature of 
the frame ; and when the rough leaves are formed, 
fill up the pot. Into this the stems throw out greedy 
roots, and they are thus dwarfed and strengthened 



THE CUCUMBER. 255 

without being potted off from a seed-pan, and to some 
extent checked in the operation. Water will not be 
required, if the weather be dull and sunless, till they 
have rooted from their stems. Care, however, must 
be taken that a sudden sun-burst does not overtake 
them in a dry state. When watered, give as much 
as will wet the whole ball. Their vital action is 
weak, and in consequence their power of decomposi- 
tion weak also ; and the object being a sturdy well- 
proportioned plant, a stiff stem, and leaves of good 
substance, it is one that a superabundance of water 
effectually defeats. The best way is to grow with as 
small an amount of water as possible ; a minimum 
rather than a maximum temperature ; and to give as 
much fresh air daily as will dry the foliage once in 
the twenty-four hours. There is no surer sign that 
all is going on well than when, on uncovering the 
frame in the morning, dew-drops are studded round 
the edges of the leaves. 

The state of the bed, after the first fortnight or 
three weeks, must be carefully watched, and a heap of 
manure and leaves, in a hot state, should be in readiness 
to line the bed with, whenever there is any difficulty 
in keeping the heat at 70. A little should be cut off 
the outside of the bed all round, and holes bored into 
it with a stake, so as to allow the heat from the lining 
to act into it. The lining should not be less than 
two feet wide, and as carefully made up as the bed 
itself ; and it should be covered so as to prevent rains 
from washing the heat out of it suddenly. In fact, 
great attention must be paid to the bed in this respect, 
to keep up a steady temperature. And as all know 
who have thus reared young cucumbers, constant 
watchfulness must be exercised in the matter of air- 



256 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

giving. Cold, frosty winds, with sudden sun-bursts 
after dull weather, make these tender plants a most 
precarious crop to rear successfully and well. A 
slight shade may sometimes be found necessary, when 
sudden sunshine succeeds a dull time, but the shade 
is a necessary evil. Damping the surface of the 
plunging material may be sufficient to prevent the 
plants from flinching or suffering under such circum- 
stances. 

After they have formed their rough leaves, and 
pushed their leader-shoot, they progress rapidly, and 
will require more water at the root ; and they should 
be more freely supplied with it, especially if the 
weather be clear and dry. It is taken for granted 
that plants raised thus early are not intended for an 
ordinary cucumber-frame, to be grown on the surface 
of the bed, but to be grown on a trellis in a deep 
brick pit. They should therefore not be stopped, 
but allowed to grow on with one leader. If stopped, 
they will make two weaker shoots, instead of one 
stronger one, and will not be ready for the fruiting- 
pit nearly so soon. As they progress, and expand 
more leaves, do not allow them to become crowded, 
nor their points to touch the glass ; and as they fill 
their pots with roots, give them a steady supply of 
water always of the same temperature as the frame. 
See that the heat is steadily kept up by turning the 
linings, and adding fresh warm material to them. 
Sometimes I have reduced the plants to one in a 4- 
inch pot, or when two were left, shifted the two plants 
into 6 -inch pots if their appearance indicated that they 
required more nourishment, or were likely to become 
pot-bound. 

When all has progressed favourably, they are 



THE CUCUMBER. 257 

generally ready for planting-out in about five or six 
weeks after the seeds are sown. In raising cucumber- 
plants as has just been described, I have usually sown 
on or about the 1st of January, and planted them in 
the fruiting-pits the second week of February. 



FRUITING-PITS, PLANTING-OUT, ETC. 

My experience leads me to recommend much deeper 
fruiting-pits than are generally in use in this system 
of cucumber-culture. Deep pits require more ferment- 
ing material at first starting every season, but in the 
after-management the temperature is maintained with 
much less trouble. I have practised with pits of 
various dimensions, but found those that are 7 feet 
deep the most satisfactory. The pit should be sunk 
3 feet below the ground-level, with the drainage so 
thorough that standing water is impossible. Instead 
of building these pits on the pigeon-hole and flue 
system, I would construct them of 4-inch solid brick- 
work, and in this way I have always found the linings 
as effective as with pigeon-holes ; and there is no 
danger of the evil effects of steam, nor from mice or 
rats, which are sometimes very troublesome. The 
space for the lining should be two feet wide, enclosed 
all round with 9 -inch brick- work, to within a foot of 
the level of the pit, so that the wooden shutters which 
cover in the linings have a good slope to throw off the 
wet. Linings last as long again thus enclosed and 
covered. The illustration, fig. 22, will best explain 
the pit we have described. 



2 5 8 



FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 



PEEPARING THE PIT FOE THE PLANTS, SOIL, ETC. 

In preparing a pit of this description for the culture 
of cucumbers on trellises, fill it up inside with well- 
sweetened stable-manure, and, when they can be had, 
fresh oak-leaves, previously prepared as directed for 
the seed-bed. In this case it is advisable that the 
proportion of leaves should predominate, for the heat 
will on that account be less violent, but more lasting. 




FIG. 22. 
1, 1, 1, Dung and Leaves. 2 Soil. 

Shake it in in layers, and tread rather firmly. This 
firm body of fermenting material will keep up a steady 
bottom-heat for a long time. The space for the lining 
requires to be filled with hot material at the same 
time ; less firmly than in the inside, but quite up to 
the top of the pit. The soil, consisting of equal parts 
loam and leaf-mould, or very old hotbed manure, and 
a little gritty sand or charred earth, to the depth of 
10 inches, should be put in the pit at once. Then 
knock the bottoms out of 11 -inch pots, and place 



THE CUCUMBER. 259 

them on the surface of the soil, one in the centre of 
each light, and fill them up with soil. In these pots 
the plants are planted, and are thus raised nearer 
the light and trellis, and can consequently be got 
sooner into bearing than otherwise. The trellises gen- 
erally used are made of light pieces of wood or strong 
wire-work, with meshes 4 or 5 inches square. They 
should not be nearer the glass than 15 inches, which 
gives space for the foliage, and, after the fermenting 
material has subsided a few inches, about 2 feet for 
the cucumbers to hang down. 



MANAGEMENT AFTER PLANTING IN THE FRUITING-P1T. 

As soon as the heat rises to 70 the pit is ready for 
the plants, which should be allowed to become rather 
dry at the root before being planted in the bottomless 
pots. Their stems should be covered in planting 
nearly to the seed-leaves, and an inch of the pots 
left unfilled for watering conveniently and efficiently. 
Fix a stake to each plant for support till they clasp 
the trellis with a tendril. Settle the soil about their 
roots with water at a temperature of 80, through a 
rather fine rose ; shade ligntly in the middle of the 
day for a few days if the sun be strong. And now 
for a start. 

The night temperature should be as near 72 as 
possible say that it ranges between that and 75, 
according to the state of the weather. As the heat 
will be strong from the fresh linings for a time, a 
covering over the glass of a single mat will be suffi- 
cient, except in cases of severe frost, when double 
mats may be necessary. Push down the lights from 



26O FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

the top early on the afternoons of bright days, and 
discharge a few syringefuls of warm water round the 
walls and over the surface of the soil, but miss the 
plants. Then shut the pit entirely till covering-up 
time, when a chink of air should be put on for the 
night in case there should be any unwholesome gas 
from the dung, and also to prevent a weakly growth. 
They will commence to grow rapidly in eight or ten 
days after they are planted, and when uncovered in 
the morning dew-drops will be seen round the edges 
of the leaves, and white thread-like roots will soon 
appear on the surface of the soil in the pots. Pinch 
the top off each plant as soon as it gets to within 2 
inches of the trellis, after which they will soon force 
a lateral growth at nearly every joint. These laterals 
should be all removed except the three at the top of 
each plant. As they expand their leaves and establish 
themselves above the trellis, remove by degrees those 
that are below it, and stop the three top growths at 
the second joint, and afterwards at every joint. 

Should the middle of March prove mild, do not let 
the night temperature exceed 75, with at all times a 
small amount of air on all night. Increase the air in 
the morning as soon as the heat reaches 80, and con- 
tinue to take' every opportunity afforded by sunny 
weather of shutting up early in the afternoon with a 
moist atmosphere, so that the temperature may run up 
to 90 for an hour or two. After a sunny parching 
day, such practice wonderfully refreshes the plants. 
Always be watchful that they never receive a check 
from becoming too dry at the roots, for the cucumber, 
after it gets into full growth, with its immense surface 
of active leaves, requires a good supply of water. The 
surface of the bed in the bottom of the pot is not so 



THE CUCUMBER. 26 1 

apt to get dry, being shaded and level, but that in the 
pot gets dry more quickly. 

I have generally cut cucumbers within six weeks 
after planting the plants in the fruiting -pit. When 
they begin to bear, it is an error to let them bear too 
freely at first ; a few should only be left to each plant 
until the whole trellis is covered with foliage, by 
which time they require to be looked over every third 
day to stop, thin, and regulate the growths, so that 
each leaf has plenty of room to expand properly and 
fully perform its functions. There is no greater error 
than the crowding system. It ends in weakly growths, 
damping leaves, and malformed useless fruits. I am 
of course presuming that the linings have been attended 
to whenever signs of declining heat have been noticed. 
There should always be a sufficient amount of fer- 
menting material mixed and in a hot state, ready to 
mix into or replace partially the linings when they 
cool. It is best to renew the back lining and one of 
the ends, and the front and other end lining alter- 
nately. April is a deceptive month to the inexperi- 
enced ; and as comparatively warm is then often sud- 
denly succeeded by very cold weather, the linings 
should be kept in an active condition to be able to 
compete with these changes, and double and single 
coverings used over the glass, as such weather renders 
it necessary. 

WATERING AND STOPPING, ETC. 

After the beginning of April, the foliage may be 
sprinkled all over through a fine rose on the afternoon 
of every fine day, and the pit closely shut up and 
aired afterwards as already directed. More frequent 



262 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

waterings will be required as they come into free 
bearing and the sun gets more powerful, rendering 
much more air necessary ; and occasional watering 
with dung -water will be beneficial. Keep them 
always regularly stopped and thinned of all super- 
fluous growths and leaves, but being careful never to 
remove the leaf from a joint where there is a fruit 
swelling off. Never allow the growths to run beyond 
one or two joints without stopping them. This treat- 
ment carefully carried out will keep them always in 
a vigorous and fruitful condition, and producing fine 
straight cucumbers beautifully covered with bloom, 
and the flower fresh at the end of each when ready 
to cut. As the season advances, and they have been 
in bearing for some time, remove by degrees the older 
growths and foliage, and train younger ones into their 
places. This should be diligently seen to the whole 
season, in order to keep the pit full of young bearing 
growths and healthy leaves, without which a regular 
supply of cucumbers cannot be maintained. Under 
such treatment I have invariably had these early 
plants as healthy and fruitful in the end of September 
as in May, and have seldom ever been troubled with 
insects or disease. 

After the first week of June fresh linings are un- 
necessary in the southern half of England, but in more 
northern districts it is necessary to attend to them a 
little later. In the hottest weather, especially when 
such has been preceded by a continuation of dull days, 
a slight shade in the middle of the day is sometimes 
beneficial. When it is desired to have these plants 
healthy and bearing after September, it is necessary to 
apply fresh linings, or mildew will soon destroy them. 

The foregoing directions, I trust, will be sufficient 



THE CUCUMBER. 263 

for those who can only command a brick pit and heat 
from fermenting material with which to produce spring 
cucumbers. Those who only grow them in summer will 
find them so accommodating for four or five months 
of the year that directions specially for that season 
would be a waste of words. For any one who has a 
frame, a little fermenting material, such as litter and 
short grass or leaves, and glass lights, can have little 
difficulty in rearing them in summer in almost any 
district ; while in the south the ridge varieties do well 
in the open air the same as vegetable marrows or 
pumpkins. And, without adverting to the undesir- 
ableness of attempting to supply cucumbers through- 
out the dull winter months in dung-pits, I will now 
offer some remarks on their winter management in 
cucumber-houses or stoves heated by hot water. 



WINTER CUCUMBERS. 

Experienced gardeners know very well that, where- 
ever sufficient space can be afforded in such as a fruit- 
ing pine-stove where a high temperature is necessary, 
there is no great difficulty in keeping a tolerably good 
supply of cucumbers in pots throughout the winter. I 
am, however, not going to recommend their being mixed 
up with pines or anything else: although circumstances 
can be modified to suit different subjects, such is not 
desirable. And now, where there is a demand for cu- 
cumbers all through the winter, there is generally a 
house or pit specially for that purpose. As in the case 
of the winter-forcing of the vine or any other plant in 
midwinter, a lean-to house facing due south, with a 
white back-wall and white-painted woodwork and clear 
sheet-glass, is the best. And the greatest amount of 



264 



FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 



sun and light that can be had is perhaps of more im- 
portance in the case of winter cucumbers than any 
other crop. 

CUC UMBER-HOUSES. 

Fig. 23 represents an excellent house for winter 
cucumbers. Such houses are wired the same as for 
vines. A house 10 feet wide requires four rows of 




FIG. 23. 

hot- water pipes for surface, and as many for bottom- 
heat, whether the latter be on the tank system or 
merely a hot-air chamber, both of which suit equally 
well, and the latter is the least expensive. The bed 
for the soil should be 1 6 inches deep, giving room for 
6 inches of drainage or fresh leaves, and 1 inches for 
soil. 



THE CUCUMBER. 265 

SOIL, ETC. 

In filling up this depth of soil, I do not recommend 
more than 8 inches at first when the cucumbers are 
planted, nor need the bed be filled the whole width 
the other two inches to be made up with top-dressing, 
and the whole of the bed to be filled in after the 
plants come into bearing. The soil should consist of 
light turfy loam two parts, and one part of leaf-mould 
or well-decayed manure, with a sixth of the whole of 
coarse sand, pounded charcoal, or charred soil. A 
light open soil is best for winter cucumbers : soil that 
is likely to become solid and inert is at all times an 
evil in cucumber-culture, and more especially so in 
winter. 

To have plants well established and in a strong 
bearing condition before winter, they should be planted 
out in the fruiting-house by the end of August, or 
very early in September. Some cultivators prefer 
raising plants intended for winter bearing by cuttings, 
which are rather more disposed to fruitfulness in their 
earlier stages of growth, on account of their less vig- 
orous growth than seedlings. They are easily struck 
in a frame or pit with a little bottom-heat. The best 
way is to strike them singly in 4-inch pots, with a 
little sandy soil round the base and neck of each cut- 
ting. Good plants can thus be prepared in three 
weeks. When raised from seed, it requires to be 
sown in the beginning of August. I am aware that 
many do not sow so early, but later sowing is a mis- 
take, as the plants should be thoroughly established 
and beginning to bear by the middle of October, in 
order to have a good supply through the winter. And 
by a proper selection of varieties, there is no difficulty 



266 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

in getting seedlings to bear well enough when sown 
as early as recommended, and they generally yield 
finer individual cucumbers. 



PLANTING, TEMPERATURE, ETC. 

The plants should not be planted closer than one 
every 2 feet, as crowding in the dull months of win- 
ter is very injurious ; and throughout September and 
October they are all the more sturdy and hardy when 
grown with a liberal amount of air. A thin flimsy 
foliage grown in a too close moist atmosphere often 
becomes a prey to thrips and red-spider, two enemies 
which should be kept at arm's-length, and to which 
end the house should be thoroughly washed and fumi- 
gated before planting the plants, and no old melon 
or cucumber soil where these pests have had a foot- 
ing should be used. When they begin to bear avoid 
heavy cropping, and when November arrives be more 
sparing with atmospheric moisture and waterings, and 
avoid high night temperatures, which should not range 
higher than from 68 to 70. The consequences of a 
high night temperature, when the days are short and 
dull, are weakly and unfruitful growths. A cover- 
ing over the glass in cold weather is much to be 
commended ; it saves firing, and is in all respects 
preferable to over -heated pipes. Frigid omo is an 
excellent material for covering, and can be fixed to 
roll up and down like a shade. It is most important 
all winter to give a little air every day when at all 
practicable, and also to prevent the leaves from becom- 
ing crowded, and to stop the lateral growths at every 
joint. 

Training, Stopping, &c. Plants intended for winter 



THE CUCUMBER. 267 

fruiting should not have the leading shoot stopped till 
it gets half-way to the top of the house, and after 
that, not again till it reaches near the top. The 
lateral growths show fruit freely when stopped regu- 
larly. It is well, too, especially in winter, to remove 
the male blossoms as soon as they are discerned. 
Impregnated cucumbers are never so equal and good 
as those which are unfertilised ; and except for seed, 
no impregnation should be allowed. I cannot impress 
too strongly the fact, that to have a constant supply 
of good cucumbers over a length of time, over -cropping 
must be avoided by removing those not absolutely 
required. It is a tempting sight to have a fine dis- 
play at one time. It looks well while it lasts, but 
the plants will rebel by resting for a season after the 
effort. 

After they have been bearing some time and give 
indications that a top-dressing would be beneficial, 
mix two parts old mushroom-bed or old hotbed man- 
ure with one part of turfy loam, and cover the surface 
of the bed to the depth of 1 inch or a little more ; 
and after the turn of the season, about the end of 
January, apply a similar covering to the roots that 
will have seized upon the first dressing. With in- 
creased daylight, they will do with increased moisture, 
and these top-dressings will cause them to grow more 
strongly, and they will go on bearing under similar 
treatment for a long time. It is, however, desirable, 
when convenience exists, to raise more plants to come 
into bearing in spring, and, if necessary, to introduce 
a new set of plants into the winter house to bear 
through the summer, or to allow of its being devoted 
to propagation or any other purpose. Not that this is 
absolutely necessary, although desirable, for the same 



268 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

plants under careful treatment often go on bearing 
until the house is needed for another winter set of 
plants. 

INSECTS. 

Thrips and red-spider are very apt to be troublesome 
on winter cucumbers, and their first appearance must 
be the signal for their destruction. See directions for 
destroying these insects at close of chapter on Melons. 

DISEASES. 

The cucumber-plant is subject to mildew when grown 
in too low a temperature, and kept too wet or too dry 
at the root. Whenever it appears, dust the affected 
parts with sulphur. Keep the bottom and top heat 
up to what I have recommended, and give air freely ; 
under such conditions it will disappear. Gumming 
and canker, with which they are sometimes affected, 
is caused by the want of sufficient bottom-heat and 
over-watering. Whenever it appears on the fruit or 
plants, raise the bottom -heat, and apply less water 
both at the root and in the air, and dust the affected 
parts with newly-slaked lime. In such houses as I 
have recommended, and with attention to the heat 
and watering, neither of these diseases is likely to 
attack the plants. Deformed fruit are often seen on 
cucumbers. They are the result of general debility, 
and a sure sign that the plants are not sufficiently 
nourished, and that the temperature has been too low. 
To prevent malformed fruits, do not crop too heavily, 
top-dress the soil with rotten dung, and keep the 
temperature in the soil and air as has been directed. 



THE CUCUMBER. 269 

VARIETIES. 

Most growers have their favourite varieties. My 
own experience leads me to recommend for both 
summer and winter crops, Volunteer and Telegraph. 
These are the most generally useful cucumbers I have 
ever grown for both winter and summer, and I have 
tried scores. Sir Garnet Wolseley is a variety re- 
cently raised by Joseph Hamilton & Sons, Carlisle, 
and of which I have a very high opinion as a general 
cropper. 



2/O 



THE CALENDAR. 



JANUARY. 

Pines. Where ripe pines are required in May and June, 
no time must be lost in getting the required number started 
into fruit. For this purpose select those Queens that have 
completed their growth early in autumn, and that have been 
rested by being comparatively dry and cool. Give them 
a night temperature of 65, and a bottom-heat ranging 
from 85 to 90, but never exceed the latter degree, or the 
roots are likely to suffer. If the soil be dry, give sufficient 
water at 80 to moisten it, and keep it regularly in a medium 
state of moisture, and gradually increase the air and moisture 
as the days lengthen and light increases. When the tem- 
perature exceeds 75 with sun, give a little air at the highest 
part of the pinery, and shut up early in the afternoon. Keep 
all succession stock quiet. The night temperature should 
range as steadily at 60 as possible. A few degrees less 
during hard frost or a high wind are safer than a few degrees 
more than 60. 75 to 80 is sufficient bottom -heat for 
those. Avoid giving more water at the root than just suffices 
to keep the plants healthy. When the plunging material has 
been leaves and tan without hot-water pipes beneath them, 
I have frequently had pines in the most satisfactory condition 
without being once watered from the beginning of November 



CALENDAR. 2/1 

to the middle or end of January. All young stock in low 
pits, that can be covered from dusk till dawn, should be 
covered in preference to firing hard to keep up the tempera- 
ture ; and whenever the temperature exceeds 65 by sun-heat, 
give a small amount of air at a number of openings, instead 
of much at a few. 

Vines. Give every attention to late grapes still hanging, 
keeping them at a steady temperature of 45 with a dry 
atmosphere. Instead of opening ventilators on mild foggy 
days, keep them shut, and embrace the opportunity afforded 
by clearer weather of giving a little increase of heat and air. 
The former practice fills the house with moist air, while the 
latter expels it. Go over every bunch twice a-week, and 
remove all decaying berries before they communicate their 
rottenness to others. Prune all vines from which the fruit 
lias been cut, and that have shed their leaves. Wash every 
inch of inside surface, not even excepting gangways. Paint 
the hot- water pipes and wood and wire-work, if they require 
it ; and if the vines have been infected with red-spider last 
year, wash and dress as has been directed. Remove 2 inches 
of the surface-soil from the inside border, and if the roots are 
inside the house, top-dress with 2 inches of horse-droppings 
or other short manure, and cover it over with an inch of 
loam. Early started vines will be set, and in some cases 
thinned. These, if required as early as possible to succeed 
the late grapes, may be pushed briskly along, but let the 
forcing be done by day principally. 65 is sufficient tem- 
perature at night, unless in very mild weather, when it 
may rise to 70. Avoid an excess of moisture, especially 
in dull weather, and give air on all favourable opportuni- 
ties, and always in the earlier part of the day, shutting up 
early in the afternoon. If this crop be in pots, great atten- 
tion must be paid to watering, keeping the soil regularly 
moist. Vines in bloom require to be freely aired, avoid- 
ing cold currents as much as possible. Thin the bunches 



2/2 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

to the desired number immediately they are well set, and 
then the berries as soon as they attain the size of radish- 
seed. Stop the growths of late vines two or three joints 
beyond the best bunch, and carefully tie them down by de- 
grees for fear of breaking the tender growths, and avoid the 
crowding of wood and foliage. Start succession-houses, the 
borders of which, it is presumed, have been well covered 
with leaves or litter, or both, some time ago. Begin with 
45 to 50 at night, gradually increasing the heat to 60 by 
the time the buds have all fairly started. If they show 
symptoms of swelling the buds at the top much in advance 
of the bottom ones, bend down the tops of the vines into a 
cooler part of the house till the bottom buds advance. I am 
not an advocate for much syringing in vineries, and prefer 
keeping up the moisture by evaporation from steaming-troughs 
and floor-sprinkling. But after leaves are formed, an excess 
of this, with too little air, breeds wartiness on the under 
sides of the leaves, and checks their expansion, and impairs 
the whole system of the vines. Put in a sufficient number 
of eyes for growing into vines required for another season. 

Peaches. Should the weather be cold and dull, be cautious 
in the application of fire-heat, unless it be in the case of 
trees in full bloom, to keep up a circulation of dry air. Go 
over the blooms at mid-day with a camel-hair brush, and 
impregnate especially shy -setting sorts, such as Noblesse. 
Do not exceed 55 in cold weather at night till the fruit has 
set and begun swelling freely. On fine afternoons syringe 
all trees not in bloom ; but when dull and cold, be content 
with sprinkling the floors. Prune and tie later houses, 
cleaning and dressing them as recommended. If the borders 
be dry inside, give a good soaking of water after they are 
top-dressed with manure. Top-dressing with manure in the 
case of young trees in new borders is not desirable, as they 
have a tendency to grow too strong. Disbud the growths 
early. In commencing to force, begin with a low tempera- 



CALENDAR. 2/3 

ture 45 during cold nights, increased to 55 when in bloom, 
is sufficient, with 10 more by day with sun, and give air on 
all favourable occasions to strengthen both wood and bloom 
buds. 

Figs. Where early figs are grown in pots, now is a good 
time to start them. They do best when plunged in a bed of 
warm leaves, giving a bottom-heat of 75 to 80. The tem- 
perature of the air should be the same as that recommended 
for peaches. Keep them regularly moist at the root, and 
syringe them every fine afternoon, and otherwise keep the 
atmosphere moist. Should any of the plants require larger 
pots, shift them when put into heat. Those which have 
been for a few years in large pots will be the better for being 
turned out of them, and the crocks removed from among the 
roots at the bottom ; the roots cut back sufficiently to allow 
of 3 inches fresh soil at the bottom of the pots, and top-dress 
the ball with horse-droppings. 

Strawberries in Pots. A number of these, according to 
the demand and space, should be put into heat every fort- 
night. Keep them near the glass, and begin with a tem- 
perature of 45 to 50 at night, increasing it to 55 by the 
time they show their trusses of bloom. Early-started crops 
now in bloom range from 55 to 60, according to the weather. 
Give them a liberal supply of fresh air, but avoid currents 
of cold air passing over them. In all stages strawberries re- 
quire to be kept moist at the root, but are best not placed in 
saucers till the fruit are set. 

Cucumbers. Those that have been bearing through the 
winter require a night temperature of 65 to 70, according as 
the weather is cold or mild. If in low pits in houses, cover 
the glass at night in preference to hard firing. Give more or 
less air daily, according to the state of the weather. Keep 
the soil moderately moist, increasing the supply of water and 
the moisture of the air as the days lengthen. Do not allow 
the leaves and young growths to become crowded, nor the 

S 



274 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

plants to bear too much fruit at one time. Sow seed for 
succession crops in a temperature of 70. 

Melons. Sow for early crops in the way recommended. 



FEBRUARY. 

Pines. Every gardener who has to keep up an unbroken 
succession of ripe pines knows how desirable it is to atten- 
tively care for all pines that show fruit from October onwards 
throughout the winter months. All such stock may now be 
pushed on at an accelerated pace as the days lengthen and 
the sun gains in power. The temperature at night should 
range from 70 to 75, according to the state of the weather, 
and by day with sun-heat from 80 to 85 before giving air. 
Shut up early in the afternoon; and where all are out of 
bloom, moisture should be increased in the same ratio as heat. 
The bottom-heat for these should be at a maximum, namely, 
85 to 90. The state of the soil must be carefully watched, 
and water given to keep it in a medium state of moisture, 
avoiding mealy dryness on the one hand and wetness on the 
other. Do not exceed a temperature of 70 at night in the 
case of those intended to start in the course of this month, 
unless it be in very mild weather, when a few degrees more 
is safe enough without hard firing. Do not be over-liberal 
with water till the fruit shows itself. Look over them occa- 
sionally and examine their centres ; and when the fruit can 
be discerned emerging from amongst the leaves, see that the 
plants so started have sufficient weak guano-water given to 
moisten the soil through and through. Supposing the early 
batch to have shown fruit by the end of the month, increase 
the heat a few degrees. Let it range to 75 on mild nights. 
Do not much increase the air moisture till they are out of 
flower, and give air a few hours a-day as weather will permit. 
Examine succession plants in small pots, and see that they do 



CALENDAR. 275 

not become too dry, and give water enough to prevent their 
suffering without inducing much growth yet. Let the night 
temperature still continue to range at 60. If it so happens 
that they are strong and well rooted, or if any portion of 
them are such, it will be better to shift them into their fruit- 
ing-pots by the end of the month than to run the risk of 
their becoming pot-bound, and consequently more likely to 
fruit prematurely. Later plants are best not shifted till 
March. Take off and pot any suckers that may be on plants 
of winter-fruiting sorts from which the fruit is cut. 
Vines. Attend to grapes still hanging as directed last 
month. Prune all vines as soon as the fruit is cut from 
them, and dress all cuts made after this season with styptic, 
to prevent any chance of their being weakened by bleeding 
in spring. Wash and otherwise clean and dress succession 
vines and vineries. Remove superfluous bunches from all 
free-setting sorts as soon as ever it is apparent which are best 
to leave. Shy-setting sorts are best left till it is easily seen 
which are set most perfectly. Should the weather be cold, 
avoid hard forcing, which in dull sunless weather only debili- 
tates and defeats the end in view. Keep vines in bloom 
steadily about 65 at night, with a rather dry atmosphere. 
Shy-setting sorts may be impregnated by drawing a dry clean 
hand over the bunches and tapping the vine-stems at mid- 
day, or a bunch of some free pollen-making variety may be 
rubbed or shaken among the blooms of shy sorts. Take 
advantage of forcing on bright sunny days if time is import- 
ant, shutting up with sun-heat at 80. Where the early crop 
is from pot-vines, and now swelling off freely, water regu- 
larly with manure-water, and the heat for such may be a few 
degrees more than is desirable for permanent vines. Air- 
giving should be carefully attended to wherever vines are 
started, and in all progressive stages a close stagnant atmo- 
sphere is ruinous to vines. Stop the growths as previously 
directed. Start succession vineries. See that all vines now 



2/6 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

started have their roots, if outside, properly protected from 
heavy falls of snow and rain. 

Peaches. Still continue to force with caution if the 
weather be cold. Do not much exceed the temperature re- 
commended last month for the various stages. Gently syringe 
with tepid water when the fruit is set, giving a vigorous 
syringing or two to free those just set from their old blooms. 
Pay particular attention to inside borders, and see that they 
do not become too dry; and except in the case of young 
vigorous trees, manure-water may be given to them after the 
fruit is formed. Ventilate trees in bloom that require a circu- 
lation of dry air so as to prevent strong currents of frosty air, 
which so frequently prevail at this season, and which are 
fatal to the fructifying organs, and injurious to the tender 
young leaves. Where there is a great superabundance of 
young fruit formed, thin off a portion of the smallest regularly 
all over the trees. Prune the trees in late houses, and dress 
them over with the mixture recommended. Complete the 
planting of young trees as soon as possible if not already done. 
Disbud forward trees as soon as the growths are ready for it. 

Figs. Continue to put last month's directions in force, 
increasing the heat a few degrees as the plants begin to break 
freely into growth, and increase the moisture in the air as 
light and heat increase. Look well to the regular supply 
of water at the root, and keep the bottom-heat steady at 80. 

Strawberries. In some instances fruit may be sufficiently 
early to be colouring by the end of the month, in which 
cases it is necessary to keep a dry warm atmosphere, with 
a circulation of air to secure good flavour. Cease giving 
manure-water at the root as soon as the first signs of colour- 
ing are noticed. Where fruit are swelling, and it is desir- 
able to have them ripe as early as possible, the night tem- 
perature may be kept at 65 to 70 with impunity, and 10 
more with sun-heat by day. Start succession plants. Do 
not expose any very early plants, from which the fruit may 



CALENDAR. 277 

be gathered at the end of the month, suddenly to cold ; but 
harden them off and otherwise care for them till they can be 
planted out. They will yield fine early runners for potting 
for early forcing, and make fine stools for cropping outdoors 
next year. 

Cucumbers. Those that were sown last will be ready to 
plant out by the middle of this month. Water always with 
water at 80 to 85, and keep the night temperature at 70, 
giving more or less air daily to prevent spindly growths. 
Sow for succession crops. 

Melons. Plant out those plants sown last month as soon 
as they are ready ; keep them at 70 with a steady bottom- 
heat. Sow for succession crops. 



MARCH. 

Pines. Continue to apply the directions of last month to 
those that are starting, and that have shown their fruit dis- 
tinctly. Keep the soil about their roots moderately moist, 
especially avoiding a state of mealy dryness at any time a 
condition which, now that the sun has more power, and that 
air has to be more liberally admitted, will check and stunt 
the young fruit. With increased light, the temperature may 
safely be advanced to 70 at night, and to 85 for a short 
time at shutting-up time, with sun -heat. More moisture in 
the air is also necessary as light and heat increase. When 
the fruit are done flowering, give a very light dewing over- 
head with tepid water through a very fine rose. Where 
there are any pines that are farther advanced, and which it 
is a desideratum fa ripen early, these may now be pushed 
on with a few degrees more heat than is named above, espe- 
cially when shut up with sun on fine afternoons. Very hard 
forcing, requiring highly-heated pipes during cold parching 
winds, should be avoided, and the milder weather as it occurs 



278 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

should be taken advantage of for pushing them rapidly on. 
Colour the water with Peruvian guano for every watering, 
and pour a little of it into the steaming-troughs. Later-fruit- 
ing stock, that are intended first to make a growth and then 
start, should now be kept moderately and steadily moist at 
the root, and air- moisture increased in proportion with a 
temperature of 65 at night. Generally speaking, this is the 
month when the majority of autumn-potted suckers require 
to be shifted into their fruit ing-pots. If the suckers show 
plenty of young healthy roots round the sides of the balls, 
they are ready to shift. If they are not in this condition, 
and the soil is in a proper state, leave them till they are. 
My own practice is to shift any time into pots a size larger 
in October, November, December, or January, rather than 
run the risk of a matted ball and stunted plant that is 
worthless after being wintered. For Queens I consider 11- 
inch pots sufficiently large. For Cayennes, Charlotte Eoths- 
child, and other large-growing sorts, I would not exceed a 
12-inch pot. 11 and 12 inch pots give better returns than 
larger sizes. These sizes will produce Queens from 5 to 6 
lb., and Cayennes from 8 to 11 Ib. weights sufficient to 
satisfy any requirements. Crock with J-inch crocks to the 
depth of 1 J inch, and cover the crocks with a thin even layer 
of the fibre from the loam, and then dust with a little fresh 
soot to keep worms at bay. In plunging them in their 
growing quarters, avoid crowding. Queens should not be 
closer than 22 inches each way, and larger sorts 24 inches. 
The bottom-heat should range from 80 to 85, not higher. 
Avoid shading much after shifting, unless the weather be 
very bright, and then only shade for two hours in the middle 
of the day. During cold March weather, 60 is heat suffi- 
cient for a maximum at night ; when mild it may range to 
65 till 10 P.M., but allow it to sink 5 before daylight. 
Give air in moderate quantity for the first fourteen days 
after shifting ; afterwards increase it, as the plants begin to 



CALENDAR. 2/9 

grow more freely. Avoid in all pine-houses cold draughts as 
much as possible. 

Vines. Early crops that have finished the stoning process, 
and that are required to ripen as early as possible, may be 
encouraged forward more freely with an advance of tempera- 
ture to 70 in mild weather ; but if cold east winds prevail, 
and the days be sunless, it is better to force more gently, 
taking advantage of bright suns to shut up early, and hus- 
band heat for the night with the least possible amount of 
fire-heat compatible with the temperature required. As soon 
as colouring begins, give air a little more freely and decrease 
the moisture. The increase and decrease of these elements 
should never be sudden, but gradual. A small amount of air 
left on at night is favourable to good colour. If the early 
crop is from vines in pots, a constant watch must be kept to 
prevent their suffering from either a deficiency or super- 
abundance of water. Discontinue watering with manure- 
water when colouring commences. Attend to all vines in 
late stages, by timely stopping, thinning, and tying down 
shoots. Examine inside borders, and keep them moderately 
moist with water at a temperature 8 or 10 more than that 
of the atmosphere. Where there are still late grapes hanging 
in small quantities, it is desirable, for many reasons, to cut 
them, and keep them in a dry fruit-room. As soon as they 
are all cut, lose no time in pruning and dressing the vines. 
Then the house can be kept cool and well aired for a month 
at least before they begin to grow. This is a good time to 
complete making new vine-borders and planting young vines, 
though it can be successfully done till midsummer. 

Peaches. If the weather be cold and sunless, force with 
the same caution recommended last month. To force peaches 
at a high temperature by dint of hard forcing is never safe, 
far less so till after the stoning stage. Do not exceed 55 to 
60 at night, until they begin to take their second swelling ; 
then, if the fruit are required early, the heat may range to 



28O FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

60 in cold, and 65 in mild weather, especially when the 
house can be shut up early with sun-heat. See that inside 
borders are kept properly moist, and syringe all houses where 
the fruit are set in fine days. Keep a sharp look-out for 
green-fly, and never let it get a footing : more especially is 
this pest dangerous to trees just budding into leaf and full 
bloom. All trees under glass, where there is no command 
of fire-heat, should be retarded and kept as late as possible ; 
for if kept close and forwarded early into bloom, a risk of 
losing the crop by late frosts is incurred. 

Figs. Where the fruit are swelling, increase the night 
temperature to 60 with 10 more by day. Figs like a moist 
atmosphere, and should be syringed every afternoon, and the 
air should never be otherwise than moist, except when 
fruit are ripening. Give careful attention to the matter of 
watering, especially if they are in pots; for if allowed to 
become over-dry, they will cast their crop; and stagnant 
water about their roots will produce the same effect. Give 
air regularly, more or less, according to the weather, to pre- 
vent the young growths from becoming weak and the foliage 
thin and tender. As soon as the growths grow to five or six 
joints, pinch the points out of them, or squeeze them firmly 
between the finger and thumb to stop growth, without caus- 
ing them to bleed. Start later trees. 

Strawberries. If all has gone on well, these will now be 
an interesting crop, and one that will be most acceptable at 
table, as a companion dish to late grapes and early pine- 
apples. Attend carefully to what was said about crops that 
are swelling off and colouring. Where they are coming into 
bloom, on the shelves of pine -stoves or cucumber -houses, 
where a high temperature and moist atmosphere are requisite 
for pines and cucumbers, it is a good plan to move the straw- 
berries into a peach-house or vinery, where the night heat 
does not range above 55 to 60. Strawberries set more 
certainly at that temperature than with 10 higher; and when 



CALENDAR. 28 1 

set, they can be moved back into their warmer quarters. 
After they are set, put successional lots of plants into peach- 
houses and vineries that are being started with fire -heat. 
Green-fly and red-spider must never be allowed a footing. 

Melons. Those planted last month will be growing freely 
now. Train them carefully as they advance. Water sparingly 
at the roots, and supply only a moderate amount of moisture 
to the air. The night temperature should not range more 
than 70. Give air on all favourable opportunities. To 
grow melons in spring with a very high temperature, and 
much moisture and little air, ruins them, by causing them to 
make weak growths with thin sickly foliage. Plant out suc- 
cession crops as previously directed, and sow more seed both 
at the beginning and end of the month. 

Cucumbers. Do not exceed 70 at night for the present. 
Cucumbers require more moisture at the root and in the air 
than melons, and SQOIL suffer if they are allowed to become 
dry at the root. If sudden bright sunshine succeeds a few 
days of dull weather, they will flag, and should not be allowed 
to do so ; and some thin material, such as tiffany, is best for 
shading with under such circumstances. Stop the lateral 
growths, and they will show fruit at every joint ; but do not 
allow them to bear too freely when young. Sow and plant 
for succession crops. 

APRIL. 

Pines. Those that started into fruit in the early part of 
winter will this month ripen and be found very useful when 
other fruits are generally scarce. As soon as they have begun 
to colour, give no more water at the root ; and if there hap- 
pen to be a few plants considerably in advance of the rest, 
it is best to remove them, if possible, to another compartment 
where they can have more air and a dry atmosphere. As 
April is generally a changeable month with cold nights, I do 



282 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

not recommend much increase of temperature over that re- 
commended for March ; 75 when the nights are mild, and 
70 when cold, is sufficient. The forcing should he acceler- 
ated "by day with sun-heat. They should he shut up soon 
after three o'clock, and get a gentle dewing overhead through 
a fine rose avoid heavy syringings, which keep the soil in 
an unhealthy puddle. The temperature may rise to 90 3 for 
an hour or two. The fires, which should he low during day, 
require to he quickened early in the afternoon, so as to keep 
the heat from falling helow the points named at 10 P.M. 
Although the sun has now considerahle power, it is not desir- 
ahle to give a great increase of air. Instead of this, it is 
hetter to frequently sprinkle the paths and walls, and keep 
the steaming-trays full. Watering must he carefully attended 
to, aiming at just keeping the soil moist hut not wet. As 
soon as suckers appear, remove them all except two on each 
plant ; and if gills or suckers appear on the fruit stalk, remove 
them all at once. If "bottom-heat is supplied to succession 
stock shifted in March from tan and leaves, keep a watchful 
eye on the ground thermometer ; and if it goes above 90, 
give each pot a shake from side to side, so as to leave an 
opening all round the pots for the escape of the heat. To- 
wards the middle of the month it is generally necessary to 
water these, as the roots will he taking possession of the 
fresh soil, which will be getting dry. As they show signs 
of growth give more air, and always early in the day, so that 
sun-heat can be husbanded for the early part of the night 
instead of violent firing. Do not increase the night tempera- 
ture much over that recommended for March 70 at 10 P.M., 
to drop to 65 in the morning. Keep the steaming-trays 
supplied with water; but unless once or twice a -week in 
bright weather, do not syringe overhead this month. Any 
young stock that were not found sufficiently rooted to shift 
in March will require to be attended to now, and shifted 
when moderately well rooted. 



CALENDAR. 283 

Vines. Where the earliest crop of grapes is the produce 
of vines in pots, they will in many cases be ripe this month ; 
and will not especially if the pots are plunged require so 
much water, as neither the fruit nor matured foliage can 
make use of so much. They require just sufficient to keep 
the fruit " plump " and the foliage healthy a superabun- 
dance will give watery grapes. Keep the house cooler and 
drier than when they were being forced on ; and while cold 
currents of air must still be avoided, a little air must be left 
on all night, in amount sufficient to prevent moisture con- 
densing on the fruit. Crops that have arrived at the colour- 
ing point should have a decreasing supply of moisture in the 
air, and an increasing amount of air as the colouring and 
ripening processes go on. It often occurs that red-spider 
appears on early-forced vines just at the time of colouring, 
and this pest must be sharply watched and vigorously put 
down. Succession-houses that have been thinned, and in 
various stages between that and colouring, may now be 
pushed on with much less fire-heat than in the dull short 
days of very early spring, and may therefore be kept some- 
what warmer : 70 during mild weather, and 65 when very 
cold at night, should be aimed at in the case of Hamburgs 
and vineries with a mixed assortment of vines. Look over 
the vines twice a-week, and remove all lateral growths as 
soon as they -appear. Thin the bunches and berries in suc- 
cession-houses. Muscats coming into bloom may have the 
heat raised to 75 during mild weather at night until fairly 
set. Where the borders of late houses have been kept dry 
inside, let them have a good soaking of tepid water, the 
surface being first stirred up and left somewhat rough, or 
water will not penetrate freely nor regularly. See that 
newly-planted vines do not suffer for want of water, and rub 
off superfluous buds as they break. 

Peaches and Nectarines. Crops that have passed the 
stoning stage may be forced on more freely, and the night 



284 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

temperature raised to 60 and 65, according to the state of 
the weather. Make the most of sunny days by shutting 
up with sun-heat early in the afternoon, giving the trees a 
syringing with water at 80. Do not allow the trees to 
bring a killing crop to maturity. Water the inside borders 
with manure-water made from cow or sheep's manure. Tie 
in the young wood regularly all over the tree. Disbud trees 
in late houses. Keep a sharp look-out for green-fly, and keep 
it down, or rather never let it get a footing at all Syringe 
trees in all houses where there is fire-heat applied every fine 
afternoon. Should mildew make its appearance, put a little 
sulphur in the water, and increase the heat and air. In late 
houses, where the fruit is all set, give a vigorous syringing to 
free the fruit of old blooms. Thin partially when about the 
size of peas, and finally those that are stoned. 

Figs. If the early crop be from trees in pots, great watch- 
fulness is necessary in the case of watering. If they are ever 
allowed to become over- dry, the chances are that the fruit 
will fall off. Water two or three times a-week, alternately 
with guano or dung water, and syringe freely at shutting-up 
time, and keep the air regularly moist. Stop the young 
growths at the .fourth or fifth leaf. Where fig-trees are 
planted in shallow inside borders,' mulch with rotten dung, 
and keep the soil regularly in a medium state of moisture. 
Do not allow the trees to carry too many fruit at a time. 

Strawberries. Immediately the fruit is all picked from 
the earliest plants, remove them into cold pits to be hardened 
properly before exposure. Continue to put former directions 
in force in the case of those swelling then 1 fruit, and in 
bloom, as well as in the case of those ripening their crop. 
Put the remainder of the stock of plants into cold frames, 
and into such structures as cold pits and late peach-houses, 
so as to keep up the supply of fruit till the earliest in the 
open ground ripen. 

Melons. Carefully impregnate the fruit - blossoms about 



CALENDAR. 285 

the middle of fine days, and stop the fruit-bearing growths 
one joint beyond the fruit. Till a full crop be set keep the 
air drier, give more air, and less water at the root. After a 
sufficient number of fruit are set and begun to swell, give a 
heavy root- watering and increase the air moisture again ; and 
unless where there are good melon -pits with the plants 
trained to trellises, do not syringe overhead. With superior 
appliances the syringe may be used on fine afternoons, but 
not till after the fruit are as large as hens' eggs. Range the 
temperature from 70 to 75 at night. Plant out succession 
crops, and sow approved sorts for later crops. 

Cucumbers. Increase the temperature to 75 on mild 
nights when sun-heat can be taken advantage of in the after- 
noon. The early planted plants will now be bearing freely. 
Do not allow them to bear too many at a time, or some of 
the freer sorts, such as Volunteer and Sion House, will ex- 
haust themselves. The disposition to ramble and grow will 
decrease as they come in a full-bearing state. Mulch them 
with rotten manure, and maintain a moist atmosphere ; and, 
above all, see that they do not suffer for lack of water, if in 
shallow borders with hot -water pipes under them. Plant 
out later-raised plants as soon as they are established in 
5-inch pots, and train as 1 described. Sow for succession in 
later crops. 

MAY. 

Pines. Early started fruit will now be swelling rapidly 
towards mature size. When it is an object to get them ripe 
as soon as possible, they may now be pushed on with a high 
temperature, but let it be principally derived from sun-heat, 
to run it up to about 100 for an hour or two after 4 P.M. 
There must be a corresponding amount of moisture supplied 
to the air, sprinkling the plants and fruit; but syringing 
must not be carried to excess, or the result will be tall un- 



286 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

sightly crowns. When the fruit begin to change colour, 
withhold water at the root, and keep the air drier. Plants 
just showing fruit require careful attention in the way of 
watering, and must not be allowed to get too dry at the 
root, otherwise a serious check will be the result. See that 
they are supplied as steadily as possible with a bottom-heat 
of 85 to 90. Smooth Cayennes, and other winter-fruiting 
varieties that have been encouraged to grow since the early 
part of March and that are now strong, and having well 
filled their pots with roots, may, towards the end of May, 
be kept cooler and slightly drier to mature their growth 
and rest them for a time before starting them. By the 
middle of the month, succession stock shifted two or three 
months ago will be growing freely, and will require great 
attention. Increase the moisture in the air in proportion to 
the increased light and progress of the plants; but avoid 
heavy syringings, which have a tendency to induce a soft 
Aveakly growth, as well as to keep the soil in a puddle. 
The soil should be carefully watched and kept moist, but 
not wet. Do not allow the temperature to run up too high 
before putting air on in the morning. In bright mornings 
put on a little air at 7 o'clock, and gradually increase it with 
the rising of the sun till 12 o'clock. Let the shutting up 
be gradual too reducing the air early instead of leaving it 
full on till later in the day. Keep the fires low on sunny 
days. Hot pipes and a scorching sun should never go to- 
gether in pine-culture. In a general way, shading succession 
pines is not desirable. It is sometimes necessary, especially 
in the case of Cayennes when growing fast ; and after a con- 
tinuance of dull weather, it is better to shade lightly for an 
hour or two than to allow the leaves to get browned and 
Aviry. 

Vines. In early houses where the grapes are ripe, the 
atmosphere should be dry and cool. It is however possible, 
for the wellbeing of the vines, to carry the drying process 



CALENDAR. 287 

too far, especially when most of the roots are inside. The 
border should be examined, and, if becoming too dry, water 
it in the early part of the day after the full air is on, so that 
moisture may not condense on the bunches. After watering, 
mulch with some loose dry dung, such as an old mushroom- 
bed. Look sharply after red - spider. In later vineries, 
where grapes are swelling off, keep up the temperature with 
as little fire-heat as possible. Shut up early in the after- 
noon to make the most of sun-heat, instead of leaving the 
vinery open later in the day, and then have recourse to 
violent firing to maintain the maximum night temperature. 
Under such circumstances as I am recommending, the night 
temperature can be kept to 70 till far on in the evening 
without heating the pipes much in the early part of it ; and 
with such treatment, Muscats, in bright weather, may range 
as high as 75 at 9 P.M., falling to 70 in the morning. 
With increased light, and the more liberal ventilation neces- 
sary, moisture, from sprinkling the border and paths, must 
also increase in all cases, except where the grapes are colour- 
ing and ripe. As soon as succession-houses are set, and have 
their berries about the size of radish-seed, lose no time in 
getting them all thinned. Avoid heavy cropping as perhaps 
the greatest evil that can be perpetrated on the vine : it 
defeats its end in all ways. The grapes cannot be so fine, 
and it is the surest way of breaking down the constitution of 
the vines. Disbud, stop, and tie down late vines. Vines 
planted in March and April will require careful attention, as 
their roots have not yet much hold of the border. See that 
they do not get too dry at the root, especially if planted 
near the hot-water pipes. Tie their young growths carefully 
to the wires. If there are temporary vines planted among 
those that are to be permanent, the former require to be 
differently managed, as directed. 

Peaches. Peaches now ripening require a free circulation 
of air, or flavour will be deficient. Put aside all leaves that 



288 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

shade the fruit, so that the sun can lay on that mellow rich 
colour which is peculiar to the peach, and without which 
they look insipid. Syringe freely on fine afternoons later 
crops that are swelling off, and pay great attention to the 
state of the border where it is principally inside. Give 
heavy waterings of manure-water when required, and mulch 
with a light coating of finely disintegrated manure. Tie in 
the wood in late houses. Thin the fruit by degrees. Keep 
green-fly and red-spider from gaining a footing. Pinch any 
shoots that make rampant growths in young trees, or they 
will rob the weaker ones of sap, and destroy the balance of 
growth which is so desirable. Trees that have been planted 
two or three years in new borders are apt to grow undesirably 
strong. A good way of counteracting this tendency is to 
crop them rather heavily. 

Figs. These will be swelling their crop rapidly, and re- 
quire to be well supplied with manure-water, especially if 
they are old plants with their roots limited either to pots or 
borders of comparatively small dimensions. Syringe freely 
every fine afternoon, and frequently sprinkle the paths and 
surface of the border through the day ; but gradually with- 
hold moisture from the air as the fruit show signs of ripen- 
ing, and increase the ventilation. When the second crop is 
forming in early houses, thin them out in time. A fair crop 
of large well-swelled fruit is worth twice the quantity of small 
skinny produce. Attend to stopping and tying down shoots in 
later houses, and avoid crowding in too much wood and foliage. 

Melons. Sow and plant out for succession crops both at 
the beginning and end of the month. Attend carefully to 
the tying and stopping of those planted in April, and im- 
pregnate the blooms. The depth of soil for melons should 
now be more than for early crops, as it is very undesirable to 
be obliged to water often when the fruit is swelling. As 
soon as the fruit begin to ripen give more air, and no more 
water at the root. 



CALENDAR. 289 

Cucumbers. Plant out for late summer and autumn sup- 
plies. Those now in full bearing will require copious sup- 
lies of water, and if from long-continued bearing they should 
show signs of nagging energy, top-dress the bed with well- 
decayed manure. Keep thrip, green-fly, and red-spider at 
bay by the prescribed preventives and remedies. Those that 
have been in bearing all winter may, if others are sufficiently 
advanced to keep up the supply, be torn out and their place 
occupied with melons, or, if required, planted again for 
cucumbers. 

Strawberries. Those will now be very troublesome with 
red-spider should the weather be hot, and particularly if the 
plants are standing on shelves, and, except when ripening, 
will require to be regularly syringed on fine afternoons. All 
plants that are now done bearing may, after being properly 
hardened, be planted out in well trenched and manured soil, 
to give runners for another year's supply, and also to bear 
outdoors next year, for which they are invaluable. 



JUNE. 

Pines. Succession stock will now have well taken with 
their shift, and made rapid progress, and will require careful 
management to prevent them from making a soft watery 
growth on the one hand, and on the other from a wiry 
weakly growth. Give just enough of water to keep the soil 
regularly moist without being sloppy ; and instead of syring- 
ing the plants heavily overhead and about their centres, rather 
damp the surface of the plunging material, and just dew the 
plants gently overhead through a fine rose. They may now 
be more freely aired, opening the ventilators and shutting 
them gradually. The fires may be allowed to go out, or 
nearly so, in steady hot weather, but always kindle or set 
them agoing in time to prevent the thermometer from falling 

T 



290 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

below 70 at 10 P.M. Where bottom-heat is dependent on 
leaves and tan, see that the material does not shrink away 
from the sides of the pots. Plants intended to yield an 
autumn supply of fruit should show fruit this month ; and 
if they have been grown in light pits, and are stocky, and 
have their pots well filled with roots, there will be little 
difficulty in getting them to do so. They should have a 
bottom-heat of from 85 to 90, and a moist atmosphere and 
higher temperature applied to them immediately. Such con- 
ditions will cause them to throw up their fruit, if all others 
be favourable. Keep stock intended for winter supply rather 
cooler and drier, to cause them to rest for a few weeks pre- 
viously to their being forced into fruiting a month hence. 
Encourage those that are swelling off their fruit with a high 
temperature and a plentiful supply of moisture, both in the 
soil and in the air. Shut them up as early in the afternoon 
of fine days as it is safe to do so, running up the heat from 
90 to 100 for a short time. See last month's directions 
regarding those that are colouring and ripe. Look over all 
plants that are in fruit, and which are throwing up suckers, 
and remove them all but two or three on each plant ; and 
wherever gills are discovered on the fruit-stems, remove them 
at once. Liquid manure, in the way of guano, soot, or dung 
water, may now be applied in a weak state every time pines 
are watered. 

Vines. Where established vines are now swelling off full 
crops, pay careful attention to the state of the borders, par- 
ticularly inside. Mulch them lightly with old mushroom- 
bed dung, and give a heavy watering of soft tepid water 
about the time they are stoning, and again just as they show 
the first signs of colouring. The outside border, if the season 
be dry and hot, should be treated in the same way. In calm 
hot weather it will now be necessary to give front ventilation 
to all vines, but not to such an extent as to create violent 
draughts on windy days. Leave a little air on all night ; 



CALENDAR. 2Q I 

and increase the ventilation by degrees to the maximum by 
12 o'clock. Let vines from which the fruit is all cut be 
kept cool, and their foliage well syringed occasionally, to 
keep them free from red-spider, and their foliage in health 
as long as possible. Thin all grapes immediately they are 
fit for the scissors, as fruit advance so quickly at this season 
that they soon get larger and thicker than they ought to be 
when thinned. If not already done, pot- vines intended for 
fruiting early next year should be shifted into their fruiting- 
pots. 

Peaches. "Where the early crop is all gathered, give the 
trees a thorough washing with clean water through the 
engine, and continue to syringe or engine them two or three 
times a-week, to keep the foliage fresh and free from insects 
throughout the heat of summer. If the border is dry, let 
it also have a good watering, and keep everything connected 
with the trees tidy and clean. The starving of early- 
forced trees with the idea of ripening them is injurious. 
Keep them cool by giving an abundant supply of air at 
front and top. Where fruit are swelling off, continue to 
syringe the trees on the afternoons of fine days, shutting 
them up early and keeping the temperature to 65, as a 
minimum, with as little fire-heat as possible. Tie in the 
growths and thin the fruit of later houses; and wherever 
fire-heat is applied, keep up atmospheric moisture in pro- 
portion. 

Figs. So soon as the first crop is gathered from early 
trees, give them a heavy watering with liquid manure, and 
mulch with short dung, so as to support the second crop 
now showing. Syringe freely on fine afternoons, and sprinkle 
the border and paths frequently in course of bright days, for 
figs delight in a moist atmosphere. Top-dress those in pots 
now swelling their second crop, and water freely with guano- 
water, and syringe the trees vigorously to keep down red- 
spider. 



292 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

Melons. Plant out a quantity for August supply. Give 
them a good depth of soil ; a heavy loam with a Very little 
old cow-manure mixed with it is best, especially after this 
season. Make the bed of soil firm, but not too smooth on 
the surface, or it will become caked, and not easily pene- 
trated with water when it is applied. Stop them when 
they reach within 8 or 9 inches of the side of the frame, 
and the lateral growths will show fruit. Stop the laterals 
one joint beyond the fruit, and avoid overcrowding with 
wood and foliage. Sprinkle advancing crops on fine after- 
noons at shutting-up time, except where the fruit are setting. 
Keep those that are ripening dry, and give plenty of air, 
so as to get the fruit as high-flavoured as possible. Sow at 
the beginning and end of the month for successional and 
late crops. 

Cucumbers. Now is a good time to plant out a quantity 
of plants for late summer and autumn supply. In England 
they do well enough in frames after bedding - plants are 
turned out ; but in Scotland it is necessary to have them 
where there is a command of artificial heat, or mildew will 
ruin them. 

Strawberries in Pots. These will now be nearly over, 
and any that are yet to ripen may be removed to cold pits 
and frames, where they can stand on a cool bottom, other- 
wise red-spider will not be easily kept in check. As soon as 
runners can be had, lay the necessary stock for another year's 
forcing. For early forcing, make a point of having them 
shifted into their fruiting-pots the first week of July. 



JULY. 

Pines. Should the weather be such as horticulturists like 
and generally expect in July, the necessity for using fire- 
heat, to keep temperatures sufficiently high for pines in all 



CALENDAR. 293 

stages of growth, will be in some localities superseded by the 
more natural and invigorating heat of the sun. At the same 
time, if a period of dull, wet, and comparatively cold weather 
should occur, careful attention must be paid to the atmo- 
sphere of all pine-pits. The pipes should be heated so as to 
keep the atmosphere from becoming stagnant, and from sink- 
ing much below the maximum temperature. Succession 
plants now in their fruiting-pots and growing rapidly require 
to be very carefully supplied with air, so as to prevent a 
weak and sappy growth. The state of the weather at this 
season generally admits of a more liberal supply of air being 
given. Those intended for early fruiting next year should, 
by the end of the month, be large plants, with their pots 
well filled with roots, and requiring careful attention in the 
matter of watering. On the afternoons of fine days these 
and all succession stock should be syringed through a fine 
rose, to moisten the surface of the leaves without causing 
much water to accumulate about their axils, producing a 
tendency to throw up suckers, and diverting their energies 
from the centres. The night temperature should range at 
75, and when the nights are cold it may drop to 70 at 
6 A.M. Early-started Queens will now be all cut, and the 
suckers they have produced ready to be potted. 6 and 7 
inch pots will be sufficiently large for these. In plunging 
these, give them plenty of room, and keep them near the 
glass. Shade when bright till they make roots 2 inches 
long. When they begin to grow freely, give plenty of air 
to keep them stocky. If fruiting plants for another year 
be scarce, some of the finest of these early suckers may.be 
potted into their fruiting-pots by-and-by, and successfully 
fruited next summer. Where a quantity of fruit is ripe at 
one time, remove the plants to a cool fruit-room. Fruit 
swelling off may be pushed on if necessary with a high tem- 
perature from sun-heat by shutting up early. The thermo- 
meter may rise from 95 to 100 for a while, with a corre- 



294 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

spending amount of moisture. Water them liberally with 
manure-water, and syringe them overhead every fine after- 
noon. If a stock of fresh soil for next year is not already 
stored, now is a good time to do it. 

Gh'apes. As houses get cleared of the fruit, keep the 
foliage healthy and active as long as possible. Red-spider 
must be prevented by keeping the house cool and by frequent 
vigorous syringings, and by preventing the borders from 
becoming too dry. Grapes intended to hang through the 
winter should be carefully examined, and if the berries are 
at all likely to be too thick when they attain their full size, 
thin them a little more. Muscats, even in the most favoured 
localities, should still be fired at night, to keep the minimum 
night heat from falling below 75, and the atmosphere from 
becoming stagnant and unwholesome. Leave a little air on 
all vineries throughout the night, especially as soon as the 
grapes show the first signs of colouring. Remove all fresh 
lateral growths as they appear. Stop young vines intended 
to bear next year, when they reach the top of the house, and 
their lateral growth confined to two leaves from each joint, 
one of which may be removed when the wood begins to get 
brown. It is not yet too late to plant vines struck from 
eyes this spring. If borders can be prepared for them any 
time this month, they will run the whole length of the roof, 
and make fine vines next year. If pot- vines have been for- 
warded as directed, they will now be strong canes, with full 
buds, and their wood changing to a brownish hue. Give 
them an increased circulation of air : do not allow them to 
make any fresh lateral growths, and see that they are fully 
exposed to the sun ; for unless their growth be thoroughly 
hard and well ripened, no great success can be counted on in 
the way of fruit from them next year. 

Peaches. Give fruit that are colouring abundance of air 
night and day, and see that none of them are shaded with 
leaves. Copiously water with manure- water, and mulch the 



CALENDAR. 295 

surface of the borders of those swelling off their fruit, and 
syringe them, freely on fine afternoons till they begin to 
change colour, after which syringe no more till the fruit are 
all gathered. Let no amount of care and trouble be con- 
sidered too much in order to keep the foliage of the early 
trees from which the fruit are all gathered healthy and clean. 
Keep them cool, and mix a little flower of sulphur in the 
water with which they are syringed. This is an excellent 
preventive of red-spider, and peaches seem to like sulphur 
about their leaves. Attend to the borders, and see that they 
do not become too dry and crack. Attend carefully to the 
growths of young growing trees, and tie them in their proper 
places, avoiding crowding them. 

Figs. Where fruit are ripening cease syringing, and give 
a free circulation of warm dry air. Where the first crop is 
all gathered, and the second advancing, see that the trees are 
well fed. Give the border a mulching of rich manure, and 
water copiously. The syringe must be used freely every fine 
afternoon to prevent red-spider, except, of course, where fruit 
are ripening. 

Melons. Melons, especially those now swelling their fruit, 
require much more water than is good for them when the 
days are shorter, and the sun less powerful. But at the same 
time avoid frequent driblets, and give a few thorough soak- 
ings instead. Keep the surface of the soil fresh, and prevent 
its cracking. A final watering should be given before the 
fruit begins to ripen, putting a thin layer of mushroom-dung 
over the surface of the bed. Remove all superfluous growths, 
and slightly syringe the foliage on fine afternoons up till the 
time the fruit begins to ripen, then keep the house or pit 
dry, give more air, and expose the fruit to the sun. Plant 
out for a late crop about the middle of the month. Melons 
may be planted later, and ripened late in autumn, but they 
are seldom much worth, and it is not generally done. 

Cucumbers. Water those in full bearing copiously with 



296 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

manure -water. Remove all old and tarnished foliage and 
unproductive wood as fast as they can be replaced with 
that which is young and healthy. Syringe regularly on fine 
afternoons, and shut up with strong sun-heat, so as to do 
with as little fire-heat as possible. In the south they do well 
at this season in cold frames, but in Scotland they are pre- 
carious and short-lived without more or less fire-heat. 

Strawberries in Pots. All should be in their fruiting-pots 
by the middle of this month at the latest earlier if possible. 
Place them where worms cannot molest them. Give them 
plenty of room. Remove all runners as they appear, and 
see that they never suffer from want of water. Syringe or 
water them overhead through a rose-pot every evening when 
the weather is hot and dry. 



AUGUST. 

fines. That portion of the stock which are intended for 
early summer supply next year, should, by the end of this 
month, have their pots well filled with roots, and be of a 
stocky well-matured growth. If kept growing late into the 
autumn, there is little certainty of getting them to start in 
time to yield ripe fruit next May and June. Care must be 
taken, while inducing a stubby well-matured growth and a 
pot full of roots, that the plants do not suffer from dryness 
at root and an arid atmosphere ; and though towards the end 
of the month moisture requires to be decreased, avoid by all 
means the "drying- off" system. Those intended to start, 
after making a growth in spring, must still be encouraged to 
grow, and be managed as directed for succession plants last 
month. Smooth Cayennes, and other late varieties now out 
of bloom and swelling off, encourage with waterings of guano- 
water, a moist atmosphere, and a high temperature in the 
afternoon and evening when sun-heat can be stored. Fruit 



CALENDAR. 297 

colouring and ripe, see former "Calendar." Suckers from 
those plants that have fruited up to this time will now be 
ready to pot. Shade them from the sun during the hottest 
part of the day for ten or fourteen days, by which time they 
will be making roots. Syringe them lightly in the after- 
noon at shutting-up time, and when they have made roots 
about 2 inches long, water them with water at 85. After 
this they soon begin to grow freely, and should have an 
abundant supply of air to keep them stocky. 

Grapes. Early houses, where the wood is thoroughly rip- 
ened, may now have the lights removed off them where such 
are movable, if the wood require painting and other repairs ; 
these, and all alterations in the way of heating, should also 
be carried out forthwith. Should the weather be dry, late 
grapes that are swelling off and about the colouring -point 
copiously water with manure- water, and slightly mulch if it 
has not been done before. Apply a little fire-heat on damp 
dull days, and always at night during such weather, with a 
little air on all night. Take every precaution to keep wasps 
and flies from preying on ripe grapes. Keep a constant eye 
to vines in all stages, and see that red-spider does not get a 
footing. Where the fruit are all cut, an occasional syringing 
and a free circulation of air night and day will keep the 
foliage clean. If any of the vines from which fruit has just 
been cut have their roots further from the surface of the 
border than is desirable, treat them as has been directed. 
Pot-vines intended to fruit early next season should by this 
time have their wood as brown and hard as a cane. Expose 
them to full sun and a free circulation of air. Should they 
show any disposition to make young lateral growths, remove 
them at once, inducing them to maturity and rest as soon as 
possible. Avoid exposing them outdoors in windy positions, 
which destroys the foliage before it has fully done its work. 

Peaches. Look carefully over all trees from which fruit 
has been gathered, and if there are many shoots that will 



298 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

not be required for next season's bearing, remove them at 
once, so that all light and air may play about the trees freely. 
If there be any red-spider about them, syringe them with sul- 
phured water till not one remains ; and otherwise give every 
possible attention that is necessary to retain the foliage to 
the last in a healthy state, so that well-developed buds and 
matured wood may be the result. Expose fruit that are ripen- 
ing to all light and air possible. Late crops in cool houses 
in their last swelling should be well supplied with water at 
the root till they begin to colour. 

Figs. Early trees from which the second crop is all gath- 
ered must not be neglected. If in pots, keep them well sup- 
plied with water, and free from insects by frequent syringing. 
Should they have more wood about them than is necessary 
for next season, remove it, and expose them to full light and 
air. Where fruit are ripening, the atmosphere must be com- 
paratively dry, with a free circulation of air, or the fruit will 
be deficient in flavour. Supply trees swelling off their crop 
with manure -water at the root a moist atmosphere and 
frequent syringing are necessary to keep the foliage healthy. 

Melons. Attend to the impregnation of late crops, and 
avoid overcrowding with shoots and foliage. Give those 
swelling off full crops occasional heavy waterings with man- 
ure-water. If grown in houses on trellises, cover the surface 
of the bed with a coating of rotten manure 1 inch or so in 
thickness. Expose ripening fruit fully to the sun, and to a 
circulation of warm air. 

Cucumbers. Those that have been in bearing all summer 
may now be partially cut in, all fruit removed, be top-dressed 
with rotten manure, and kept at 75 at night, and they will 
soon make young wood and begin bearing, and give a sup- 
ply till late in autumn. See that those in full bearing do not 
want for water at the roots, and syringe them freely on fine 
afternoons. About the middle of the month is a good time 
to sow for winter-bearing plants, or they may be produced 



CALENDAR. 299 

from cuttings at the end of the month. It is desirable to get 
them well established while the days are yet long, and less 
fire-heat required. 

Strawberries in Pots. These, if shifted into their fruiting- 
pots last month, will now be growing rapidly, and filling their 
pots with roots. Give them a liberal supply of water, and 
occasional watering with dung-water as they get well estab- 
lished in their pots. See that they are not standing too 
closely together, preventing a free circulation of air and light 
about them. They should be placed in an open airy situa- 
tion. If any portion of the required stock still remain un- 
shifted, not a day should be lost in getting them into their 
fruiting -pots. The great point is to obtain well -ripened 
crowns, and pots as full of roots as they can hold. If they 
are disposed to root through the pots, lift them occasionally 
to prevent this. It is best, for this reason, to have them 
standing on boards or trellis-work, to prevent the roots leaving 
the pots. 

SEPTEMBER. 

Pines. Smooth Cayennes, and other varieties that are 
most suitable for autumn and winter supply, will now be 
swelling rapidly, and should have every encouragement and 
attention. A top-dressing of horse-droppings will assist in 
stimulating them, and in keeping them uniformly moist 
at the root. Water them with weak guano - water every 
time they require watering, and keep the atmosphere moist. 
Shut up early in the afternoon, with sun-heat to a tempera- 
ture of 90 for a time, allowing it to fall to 75 by 10 o'clock 
P.M. Syringe them overhead at shutting-up time, when the 
weather is bright, but avoid the crowns as much as possible 
with the syringe. Give late Queens that are colouring a free 
circulation of warm dry air about them, and keep them dry 
at the root. Should more ripen at one time than are re- 



3OO FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

quired, remove the plants to a cool dry room, where they 
will keep in good condition for two or three weeks, and so 
keep up a succession of fruit. Now is a good time to put in 
a second lot of suckers, from plants which have ripened and 
are ripening their fruit. Plunge them in a bottom-heat of 
85, and keep the air at about 70. If the soil is moist 
when they are potted, water will not be necessary till they 
have formed roots an inch long. Dew them lightly over- 
head every fine day when shut up, and give air more liber- 
ally after they have rooted and commenced to grow, and 
avoid crowding them in the bed. The stock of plants that 
are intended to start into fruit at the commencement of the 
year will now require careful management. No more water 
should be given than is sufficient to keep them from suffer- 
ing either from aridity of atmosphere or over-dryness of soil. 
Give a liberal supply of air on fine days. By the end of the 
month they should be in as complete a state of rest as is 
possible. 65 will be a night temperature sufficiently high 
to begin. October with, and it should be gradually lowered 
to this as the nights lengthen and become more cold. Those 
plants that are intended to start next spring, as a succession 
to those just referred to, and that are not now so forward, 
require to be encouraged to grow more freely for another 
month at least, and consequently require to be kept more 
moist, and be shut up with more heat on the afternoons of 
fine clear days. Avoid as much as possible a forcing-heat on 
dull days and at night, and take advantage of sun-heat when 
it can be had. All syringing of growing stock overhead 
should now cease. 

Grapes. Late grapes intended to hang through the winter 
should be quite ripe by the end of the month. In keeping 
grapes successfully, it is of great importance that the foliage 
be healthy as long as possible. And if there be any red- 
spider about the vines in patches, as is not unfrequent, get 
rid of it at once. In wet localities, where heavy autumn 



CALENDAR. 30 1 

rains prevail, cover the outside border with shutters or tar- 
pauling so as to throw off the superabundant wet. And as 
it is now desirable to keep the inside of the vineries drier, 
let the surface of the border be gently forked up, and a 
sprinkling of old mushroom-bed manure be scattered over it 
to the depth of an inch, first sifting it rather finely. Look 
over ripe crops, and cut out all berries that show any signs 
of decay. Keep the vines free from lateral growths, and the 
main foliage healthy to the last. The early part of this 
month is a good time to remove the inert surface-soil from 
borders down to the roots, replacing it with fresh turfy 
loam mixed with horse-droppings, and a little old lime-rub- 
bish or charcoal. Vines from which fruit was cut in April 
and May will be ready to prune by the end of the month ; 
and if intended for early forcing again, it should be no 
longer delayed. After pruning keep them as cool as possible. 
All repairs or painting requisite should be done before 
the weather becomes unfavourable for such work. Young 
vigorous-growing vines that were planted last and this year, 
fire and keep warm till the wood is perfectly brown and 
matured. Eemove all young growths as they appear, and 
if they have been allowed to make anything of a rambling 
lateral growth, remove as much of it as will admit a free play 
of light and air about all the foliage and wood. See last 
month's directions regarding pot-vines. 

Peaches. Give trees that are strong, and have their wood 
not so solid and ripe as is desirable, fire-heat and a circula- 
tion of air in order to ripen them. If any vestige of red- 
spider remains or appears about them, give them a few 
vigorous washings on fine afternoons with the engine. Late 
crops in cool houses will now be ripening, and will require to 
be carefully guarded from flies and wasps. Push aside all 
leaves that in any way interfere with a full exposure of every 
part to sun and air. 

Figs. Encourage trees that are swelling off a crop with 



3O2 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

waterings of liquid manure, and keep a circulation of air 
about them as the fruit ripens. Give those from which the 
crops are all gathered an occasional syringing, so as to keep 
the foliage healthy until it has properly performed its func- 
tions, and drops off naturally. Plants in pots from which all 
fruit are gathered, may be placed in any warm place outdoors 
where they will get full sun, and be sheltered from high 
winds, which would tarnish their leaves. 

Melons. Keep fruit that have got to the ripening stage 
dry, and well exposed to light and air. The night tempera- 
ture should range about 70. Be careful not to water crops 
that are nearly fully swollen, or the chances are that they 
will burst and be spoilt. The best way is to mulch the 
surface of the soil with a little leaf-mould or rotten manure 
to prevent the surface of the bed from becoming too dry, 
and from cracking. Late crops that are swelling rapidly 
should be kept warm, and now that the nights are longer 
and cooler, should have fires put on to prevent the tempera- 
ture from sinking below 70 to 75, according to the state 
of the weather. 

Cucumbers. Plants raised from seed sown about the 
middle of August will soon be ready to plant out. A light 
moderately rich soil is best for winter cucumbers. Grow 
them on with as much light and air as possible, in order to 
get them strong and healthy before shorter and duller days 
arrive. Plants still in bearing should be watered occasionally 
with liquid manure. Keep the temperature from 70 to 75 
at night. If a low temperature is allowed at this season, 
mildew is sure to attack and destroy them. All symptoms 
of it should be checked by dusting the affected parts with 
flower of sulphur. 

Strawberries in Pots. If former directions have been 
carried out, these will now have well filled their pots with 
roots; and should the weather be hot and dry, give them 
frequent supplies of dung or guano water. It is best to 



CALENDAR. 303 

water them in the morning after this season, as the drier 
they are at night, the less likely are they to be affected with 
spot in their leaves. Keep them free from runners and 
weeds, and give them plenty of room. 



OCTOBER. 

Pines. Suckers potted in August and early part of Sep- 
tember will now grow freely, and will require to be well 
aired to prevent their drawing. After the middle of this 
month range the night temperature from 60 to 65, accord- 
ing as the nights are cold or mild. Lower the bottom-heat 
to from 75 to 80. Should there be any fear of the largest 
and earliest of them becoming pot-bound before spring, it is 
better to give them a small shift, and a little more room 
between plants, than to allow them to be cramped in small 
pots. With the decline of sunshine and heat, the amount 
of moisture, both in the soil and air, requires to be gradu- 
ally reduced. Succession plants, intended to fruit early 
next season, will now have well filled their pots with roots, 
and in other respects be in a well-matured condition, and 
must be kept in a state of comparative rest for the next 
three months. Drop the temperature to 60 at night by the 
end of the month ; and the bottom-heat should be propor- 
tionately low 75 to 80 is quite sufficient to keep the roots 
in good condition. When with sun-heat the day tempera- 
ture exceeds 70, give air to prevent it rising to an exciting 
degree. If the pots are plunged firmly to the rim, they will 
require very little water through the winter. Keep a moist 
atmosphere in pits or houses where fruit are swelling, and 
range the night temperature from 70 to 75, according as 
the weather is mild or cold. Shut up the house early on 
the afternoons of fine days, running the temperature up to 
85 for a time. Gently sprinkle the plants overhead every 



304 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

other day when the weather is bright. See that no check 
is allowed from want of water at the root. Keep the 
bottom - heat at 85. Suckers of Smooth Cayennes and 
other autumn and winter fruiting sorts can be taken off and 
potted as they become large enough. They will root and 
establish themselves before winter, and will not be so likely 
to become drawn as when left to grow on the parent plant. 

Vines. Look over all grapes that have been ripe for some 
time two or three times a-week, and wherever a mouldy berry 
appears remove it at once, 'before it taints others. Keep 
everything about them as dry as possible by occasional fires, 
and a free circulation of air on fine days. Keep vines from 
which the fruit is all cut cool and well aired, unless in cases 
where the wood is not perfectly ripened, which should be 
fired till it is perfectly brown and hard. Vines planted this 
year, and that have continued to grow till now, should be 
ripened forthwith by the application of a little extra fire- 
heat, and, if at all crowded, by the removal of some of the 
lateral growth, to allow a free play of light and air about all 
their parts. Vines from which grapes are to be ripened early 
next year should be pruned immediately. Eemove all loose 
bark from their stems, but avoid the " scraping-to-the-quick " 
system. If there has been any spider on them this season, 
scrub them with a hard brush and water, and then coat them 
with the mixture recommended. Thoroughly clean all the 
wood and glass, remove the surface-soil, and replace it with 
fresh, so that all may be in readiness to start forcing next 
month. If pot-vines have been standing outdoors, remove 
them to some place where their roots can be protected from 
heavy rains. Where very early grapes are required, the 
earliest of these may be started towards the middle or end 
of the month ; and if they can be plunged in bottom-heat, 
they will start into growth sooner. If they have been cut 
or pruned in any way, dress the wounds twice over with 
styptic, or they will be apt to bleed. Put a few more into 



CALENDAR. 305 

heat than are required for the space, in case any of them fail 
to show well. It is useless to start thus early with any but 
early and well-ripened vines, and they require to have a 
higher temperature to excite them than two months hence 
55 at night will be necessary. 

Peaches. Where new borders and fresh plantations of 
trees are contemplated, this is an excellent time to transplant 
the trees, just as they are beginning to shed their leaves. 
Trees planted a season or two ago, and that have grown too 
grossly, may now be carefully lifted and replanted. Keep 
trees that are well ripened well aired and cool ; but where 
the wood is rather green, a little fire-heat will much assist 
their ripening. 

Melons. Late crops will now require more assistance from 
fire-heat. The night temperature should not be less than 
70, and when ripening, warmth and dryness are indispens- 
able to anything like good flavour. Melons can now be kept 
longer, after being ripe, in the fruit-room than in warmer 
weather. 

Cucumbers. Keep up a genial growing atmosphere, not 
allowing the temperature to sink much below 70 at night. 
Give air in the early part of the day, and shut up early with 
sun-heat. Lessen the moisture in the soil and atmosphere 
as the season becomes more dull and sunless ; but where the 
roots are near the hot pipes, see that over-dryness of soil is 
not allowed. Stop them at every joint, and do not allow 
them to become over-crowded, which produces a thin weakly 
foliage, that is much more apt to damp off as the weather 
becomes more damp and sunless. Do not allow them to 
bear too much fruit at one time. 

Figs. Generally speaking, all figs are gathered by the 
middle of this month, and the trees may be kept drier at 
the roots and the house cool, but see that extreme dryness 
of soil is not allowed. All wood not required to furnish 
the trees for next season had better be removed at once. 

U 



306 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

Early plants in pots should now "be protected from heavy 
rains. 

Strawberries in Pots. If former directions have been 
attended to, these should now be ready to burst their pots 
with roots, and have large well -ripened crowns. During 
heavy rains, lay the pots on their sides, if they cannot be 
placed in cold pits or frames. When plants are late, place 
them in pits or frames, in a warm light place, and put glass 
over them to induce them to mature their growth better than 
if left in the open air. 

NOVEMBER. 

Pines. Those suckers potted in early autumn will now be 
well rooted and established, and will require cautious treat- 
ment, so as to rest them without stinting them. After the 
middle of the month the night temperature should never ex- 
ceed 60 in mild weather, and a few degrees less when the 
weather is cold and calls for extra firing. A little air should 
be given every fine day when the temperature exceeds 65. 
Keep the bottom-heat steadily at 75, and the atmosphere 
dry rather than otherwise, but not by any means parching. 
Very little or no water at the root will be required if they are 
growing in a bed of leaves and tan. Where the bottom-heat 
is supplied entirely by hot-water pipes, and the plunging 
material is shallow, an occasional watering will be necessary. 
Recently-potted suckers should be kept 5 warmer till they 
are tolerably well rooted ; and if in very light pits, may be 
kept growing gently through the winter, especially if the con- 
dition of the stock of young plants makes this desirable. 
Keep all plants intended to be started into fruit soon after 
the turn of the day at 60 at night, with a few degrees more 
bottom-heat than has been recommended for suckers. These 
will require the same treatment with regard to watering as 
has been directed for suckers. Plants intended to fruit in 



CALENDAR. 307 

succession to these will do with exactly the same treatment 
recommended for suckers, only be very watchful that they 
do not get such a drying as is likely to cause them to fruit 
prematurely when increased moisture and temperature are 
given to them by-and-by. Keep smooth Cayennes, and other 
winter varieties that are swelling off their fruit, steadily moist 
at the root, with a night temperature of 70 and 80, or 10 
more by day, and the bottom-heat 85. Avoid syringing 
overhead after the beginning of the month, but maintain a 
moist genial atmosphere more by sprinkling the floors and 
surface of the bed than from the steaming apparatus. An 
over-moist atmosphere at this season is productive of large 
crowns, which are a great disfigurement to pines. Take good 
care of all fruit that may chance to show this month. These 
kept in a temperature of 70 all winter, will come in very 
acceptably in spring, when pines are generally scarce and 
much appreciated. Get coverings ready for pits during 
severe weather, which is much to be preferred to keeping 
up temperature by hard firing. Frigidomo is excellent for 
this purpose. 

Grrapes. November is perhaps the most critical month 
for grapes of the whole keeping season. Look carefully over 
the bunches at least three times weekly, and remove every 
berry that shows the least signs of decay. Hamburgs espe- 
cially require this care. Make fires sufficient to warm the 
pipes slightly on the mornings of fine days, giving air at the 
same time, so as to expel the damp. When frost occurs, 
keep the temperature about 45. There should not be a 
plant requiring water in vineries where fruit is hanging in 
winter. Prune all vines that have cast their leaves, remove 
all the loose bark and dress them, and otherwise clean the 
vineries as directed. Presuming that the early vinery has 
been pruned and otherwise prepared for starting this month, 
a quantity of leaves mixed with a little stable-litter should 
now be formed into a bed or ridge in the centre of the house. 



308 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

This will soon ferment and heat, and a portion of it should 
be turned over every day so as to give a little heat and moist- 
ure. This body of warm material will, in ordinary weather, 
keep the temperature sufficiently high with little or no fire- 
heat. The outside border should be thoroughly covered up 
with 2 feet of leaves and litter, and either thatched or covered 
with shutters to throw off the rains. Sling down the vines 
from the rafters, so that the top part of them be brought into 
the same temperature as the lower parts. Syringe them 
gently twice a-day with tepid water. Pot-vines started last 
month may still be kept at 55 at night until they break, 
when they will require 5 more heat. In their case make the 
most of every ray of sunshine that occurs the less artificial 
heat used to keep up a given temperature the better. Examine 
the outlet or main drains from all vine-borders, and see that 
they are acting properly. See that all heating apparatus is 
in tight repair and acting properly before severe weather 
sets in. 

Peaches. Lose no time in getting those that are intended 
to be started next month pruned and tied. If there has been 
any red-spider about them last season, dress them as directed ; 
remove the surface-soil from the border, top-dress with rotten 
manure, and cover over with an inch or two of soil. If the 
border is dry, give a good soaking of water, and towards the 
end of the month shut up the house, and keep the tempera- 
ture from falling below 40. Treat the outside as directed 
for vines. 

Figs. Prune and tie as soon as all the leaves have fallen. 
If, however, a proper system of summer pinching and thin- 
ning has been adopted, there will now be very little surplus 
wood to prune away. Remove the surface-soil of the border, 
and replace it with fresh turfy loam and rotten manure in 
equal proportions. Keep the house cool all through the 
month. Those in pots can be stored away in any cool pit or 
shed for the present. 



CALENDAR. 309 

Cucumbers. We have now long damp nights and dull 
sunless days, conditions very trying to cucumbers. The 
temperature should range from 65 at night to 70 by day, 
with a few degrees more when the sun shines. Water at 
the root and moisture in the air must be more sparingly 
applied. Give a little air on all favourable occasions. Keep 
young growths regularly stopped, and do not allow any 
crowding of foliage. If green -fly attack them, destroy it 
by two moderate smokings with tobacco on two consecutive 
nights. 

Strawberries in Pots. These should now be plunged in 
cold frames, or removed to cold late peach-houses, where they 
will be sheltered from rains. Or where no such protection 
can be made available for them, build them into stacks, 
laying the pots on their sides with the plants outwards, and 
fill up the space between them with ashes or sawdust. Put 
up in this way, they can readily be protected from severe 
frost by throwing mats or litter over them. 



DECEMBER. 

Pines. Early autumn-potted suckers that are well rooted, 
and wintering in dry light pits or houses, with bottom-heat 
supplied by hot-water pipes, will require to be carefully ex- 
amined at intervals, and watered before they become " dusty " 
dry. This must be guarded against by watering those that 
require it at intervals. This applies most forcibly to a time 
of cold weather, when more firing is required to keep up the 
proper temperature, which should now be at its minimum, 
the days being generally sunless and short. Young stock 
winter with the best results at a temperature not exceed- 
ing 55 for at least six weeks at the dullest part of the year. 
At this season, when autumn fruit has been mostly cut, more 
room can generally be given to young stock. Where early 



310 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

pines are an object, a number of the earliest and most likely 
to start should now be subjected to a temperature of 70 at 
night, with 8 or 10 more when there is a blink of sun by 
day, the bottom-heat to be kept ranging from 85 to 90. 
They will be dry at the root, and require to be watered, after 
being a few days in the temperature named. Keep the at- 
mosphere generally moist, but not to such an extent as will 
cause condensed moisture to fall into the centre of the plants. 
The remainder of the next season's fruiting-plants may still 
be kept rather dry, and at a temperature ranging from 55 to 
60 for the present. Continue to supply to those swelling 
their fruit a rather moist atmosphere, a temperature of 70 in 
the air and 85 at the root. Examine the individual plants 
weekly, and water those that require it, so as to keep the 
soil in a moderately moist condition. Pot suckers on stools 
from which the fruit have recently been cut, and plunge in 
a brisk bottom-heat and temperature of 65, in a light pit ; 
they will soon root, and make fine plants for shifting as a 
succession to those potted six or seven weeks ago. If these 
are strong, and potted now into 6 and 7 inch well-drained 
pots, according to their size, they will grow in these till May, 
and can then be shifted at once into their fruiting -pots. 
Where there are what I shall term half-sized plants that is, 
plants in 8-inch pots well rooted, I would have no hesita- 
tion in shifting them after the middle of the month into 11- 
inch pots ; and pushing them on, plunged thinly in a light 
place, with the view of fruiting them next year. 

Grapes. Continue to keep a strict watch on all grapes 
that are still hanging. As soon as the early-started vines 
fairly burst their buds, raise the temperature a few degrees, 
and when the young growths are half an inch long raise the 
night temperature to 60, and that of the day to 65 in mild 
weather. Pot-vines that are required very early may have a 
degree or two more, but it is far safest not to force too hur- 
riedly, while the days are so short, cold, and dull ; but to get 



CALENDAR. 3 1 1 

well under way, and be ready for more rapid work when 
there are longer days and more heat from the sun. 

Peaches. The early house prepared as directed last month 
may now have fire-heat regularly applied, keeping the tem- 
perature about 50 in mild weather, and a few degrees lower 
when cold. Proceed with caution for the first few weeks. 
Syringe the trees morning and afternoon with tepid water, 
give a little air early every fine day, and husband every 
gleam of sun-heat that can be had. Prune, dress, and tie 
succession-houses. 

Figs. Where early figs are required, a place should be 
got in readiness, where those in pots can be started after the 
middle of the month. Bottom-heat is of great advantage 
thus early : it obviates the necessity of much artificial heat 
for a while at first if a bed of oak-leaves can be made up, in 
which the pots can be plunged in a bottom-heat of about 75, 
with a night temperature of 50 to begin with. They not 
only break more freely and strongly into growth, but young 
fruit formed in autumn are not so likely to drop off as when 
forcing is commenced without bottom -heat. Syringe the 
plants on fine days, and just give fire-heat enough till they 
break to keep the temperature at 50 ; and when water at 
the roots is required, let it be given at a temperature of 80. 
If the plants have been grown several years in the same pot, 
top-dress them with something rich, and water with guano 
or sheep-dung water. 

Cucumbers. Avoid hard forcing in very cold sunless 
weather, or the leaves will become thin, "and the whole 
plants weakened. When the weather is severe, it is very 
desirable to cover the surface of the glass, and fire more 
moderately. 

Strawberries in Pots. Put a quantity of these into heat 
according to the number of plants and available room. The 
early peach-house, or a shelf near the glass, is a good place 
to start them, as they do not do well with much heat thus 



312 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

early. If they can be set on a fermenting bed of leaves in 
a pit near the glass, it will be a great advantage to them. 
The mild bottom-heat will start them more kindly. Before 
putting them in heat, remove all decayed leaves, turn every 
plant out of its pot to see that the drainage is not deranged, 
and water them with clear lime-water to kill all worms, 
which, if not got rid of, will begin their injurious work im- 
mediately they are put into heat. 



313 



A FEW OBSERVATIONS ON HEATING 
BY HOT WATER. 



THIS being a subject that is very intimately connected with 
the cultivation and forcing of fruits under glass, it has been 
considered advisable to append a few observations on the 
principles of heating by hot water ; for, notwithstanding all 
the elaborate essays that have from time to time appeared in 
the horticultural press on heating hothouses with hot water 
not to say anything of the stirring controversies that have 
taken place on the subject I have the best reasons for be- 
lieving that many whom the matter intimately concerns have 
still but very vague and erroneous ideas regarding the prin- 
ciples upon which the proper adjustment of hot-water boilers 
and pipes depend. And from some cause or other, it is a 
notion very prevalent that the easiest and shortest way to 
get deeply immersed in the disagreeable and undefined diffi- 
culty figuratively termed " hot water," is to plunge into this 
heating question, in which are involved furnaces, boilers, 
pipes, fire, and water, beside that unfortunate being who has 
to control the elements and conditions of combustion so as to 
have half-a-dozen thermometer-needles in as many hothouses 
standing at certain hair-like marks at half-a-dozen different 
times in the four-and-twenty hours. 

It is my belief that, if those who have to do with fixing 
pipes and boilers were to make themselves acquainted with 



FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

the effects of heat and the power of gravitation on water, 
it would be next to impossible to commit the blunders, 
and resort to the unnecessary and expensive precautionary 
measures, one so often meets with and has to deal with. It 
is no part of my intention to pretend to deal with that im- 
ponderable and powerful agent called by men of science 
caloric, but which I shall call heat hypothetically regarded 
as a subtle fluid, the particles of which are to each other 
repellent, but attractive to all substances, though in various 
degrees. But the effect of heat upon water, an element com- 
posed of minute and distinct particles that are supposed not 
to have the quality or power of transmitting heat the one to 
the other, as in the case of solid bodies, is one of the matters 
concerning which some knowledge is indispensable in the 
case of all who have anything to do with heating by means 
of heated water circulating in pipes. 

The particles of which water consists, it need scarcely be 
said, have a capacity for heat from different sources, but most 
manifestly so to us in this case from combustion in the fire- 
place. Now the expansion of bodies is one of the most 
universal effects of increasing their heat. This expansion 
takes place to a greater degree in some bodies than in others. 
Liquids expand much more by the same increase of heat 
than solid bodies, and air more than either. With the 
expansion of the individual particles of water, their specific 
gravity becomes less ; in other words, they become lighter in 
proportion to their size. Here lies the whole secret of hot- 
water circulation in pipes and boilers, and the well-known 
law which should regulate their relative positions. The 
heated particles of water bound upwards, and, as "nature 
abhors a vacuum," their place is taken up by a rush of colder 
and heavier particles. It is of very little practical use to 
cavil about the question as to whether heat or the greater 
specific gravity of the cold water which jostles up the warmer 
and lighter plays the greater part in sending up and away 



HEATING BY HOT WATER. 315 

the stream of hot water. Both have a hand in it, no doubt. 
This influence of heat upon water can be very manifestly 
shown by filling a tumbler with cold water, and mixing with 
it some coloured particles of matter, and then immersing the 
tumbler in a vessel filled with hot water. It will at once be 
seen, by the motion of the particles of coloured matter, that 
at the sides of the tumbler there is an upward current of 
heated, and in the centre a downward current of colder, water. 
This goes on until the whole is of the same temperature. A 
glass of warm water immersed in cold has the current reversed 
in its course upwards in the centre, and downwards at the 
sides, where the water is being cooled. Here is the whole 
secret of the motion and course of heated water in the boiler 
and pipes of a properly adjusted heating apparatus. And 
one would suppose that the simple understanding of this 
would prevent any from making mistakes. Yet, strange to 
say, some who undertake hothouse-heating are entirely igno- 
rant of these simple and well-established facts. 

Wherever the heat generated by combustion in the fur- 
nace acts most directly and powerfully, from that surface 
bound upwards the particles of water, and to that spot, 
simultaneously, drop the colder particles of water, to be in 
their turn sent bounding on their errand of warmth. Any- 
thing that attempts to contravene this law of gravitation will 
be rebelled against by the elements concerned with unmis- 
takable violence and persistency. Clearly, then, the outlet 
for the water, thus lightened and charged with its freight of 
heat, should be at the highest part of the boiler ; and that 
by which the cold water is to run in and down, to take its 
place, should be at the lowest point. Boiler inventors and 
manufacturers recognise this important part of the matter, 
and always place the flow-pipe at the highest, and the re- 
turn-pipe at the lowest, point of boilers. 

Great importance has been attached by many to the ne- 
cessity, or at least the great desirability, of having the boiler 



316 FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

fixed at a very much lower level than the pipes ; and also to 
the necessity of laying all the flow-pipes on the incline the 
whole length of the house to be heated. The importance, 
too, of having the return - pipes on a considerable decline, 
has, in my opinion, been very much over-estimated. It is 
entirely unnecessary to form deep, damp stoke-holes, in order 
to sink the boiler to a level much below the main body of 
the pipes, as is so very frequently met with. And as to 
having the pipes running at an incline, after starting from 
so high a level, I consider it entirely unnecessary. Indeed, 
one of the most efficient heating apparatus I ever super- 
intended, started from about a foot above the level of the 
boiler, and ran down a gradual decline into the boiler. 
Immediately the water enters a hothouse it begins to part 
with the heat absorbed from the fire, gets colder, increases 
in specific gravity as it speeds in its way back to the boiler 
again, and a downhill career is most natural to it as soon 
as it leaves the highest point of action, where its heat is the 
greatest. Practically I have never found much difference 
when the pipes went the whole length of the house on an 
incline, or on a dead level all the way round till it came 
near to, and dropped into, the return-opening of the boiler. 
Indeed there is little fear of a good circulation, provided 
the pipes do not at any point descend and rise suddenly, 
and most especially that at any point they do not dip 
below the level of the return-opening into the boiler. I 
have had the working of apparatus where pipes, descending 
perpendicularly, crossed under a walk and rose again per- 
pendicularly to heat another range of 80 feet of glass ; but 
at none of the points were the pipes lower than two feet 
above the level of the return-opening into the boiler. This 
undesirable arrangement worked pretty well until hard firing- 
became necessary; then the water was thrown out in plunges 
at the supply cistern. Such an arrangement should always 
be avoided. 



HEATING BY HOT WATER. 3 1/ 

There is another error frequently committed in arranging 
the route of the water. Suppose, for instance, a boiler fixed 
at one end of a house of, say, 80 or 100 feet long, as part 
of the work allotted to it. As in the case of span-roofed 
houses, it may be desirable to have three or four rows of 
pipes all round the house. Now it is not uncommon to find 
two rows called the flow-pipes taken all round the house to 
near the boiler, and there to start back with other two on 
the same route into the return-opening of the boiler. This is 
giving the water a long journey, and the return-pipes will be 
found comparatively cold by the time the water gets to the 
boiler. Now, if instead of this the whole four pipes be con- 
nected with the flow-pipe, and go round the front and end of 
the house nearly on a level, and start along the back down a 
decline to the boiler, and there plunge down the drop-pipe 
into the return-opening of the boiler, it will be found that 
while any portion of the pipes may not be quite so hot as 
the beginning of the two flow-pipes in the former case, there 
will not be any portion of them nearly so cold as the last 
portion of the return. I do not say that this is the best 
way to conduct the water; but I have proved from expe- 
rience that the arrangement indicated is the better of the 
two named, when the pipes are, from any necessary condi- 
tions, laid all round the house in this way. 

The supply of waste-water to the boiler and pipes is often 
placed anywhere that looks most convenient ; but the proper 
place is to attach the supply-cistern to the return-pipe some- 
where near the boiler. Fixed to the flow, the water will be 
frequently plunged out by the upward tendency of the hot- 
test water. It is also very undesirable to leave the supply- 
cistern to be kept full either by pouring in water from a 
pot or by turning a tap, which is often neglected. There 
should always be a cistern supplied by the action of a ball- 
cock, and then the anxiety connected with the neglect of 
supply does not exist. 



3lS FRUIT CULTURE UNDER GLASS. 

Eegarding boilers, it is difficult to say which among many 
good ones are best. The upright tubulars are powerful, but 
expensive, and require deep stoke-holes and good fuel. Some 
of the improved forms of the old saddle-boiler are excellent ; 
so are the cruciforms, which, like the saddles, burn any sort 
of fuel, and are easily set. For amateurs requiring to heat 
only one small house, the smallest form of Meiklejon's retort 
is excellent and cheap. 



INDEX. 



CALENDAR, THE. 
January, 270. 
February, 274. 
March, 277. 
April, 281. 
May, 285. 
Jime, 289. 
July, 292. 
August, 296. 
September, 299. 
October, 303. 
November, 306. 
December, 309. 

CUCUMBER, THE. 

Its natural history, 251. 
Difficulties of early forcing by 

dung-beds, 252. 
Preparing the seed-bed, 252. 
Sowing, and treatment of young 

plants, 253. 

Application of linings, 255. 
Fruiting-pits, planting-out, &c., 

257. 
Preparing the pit for the plants, 

soil, &c., 258. 
Management after planting in the 

fruiting-pit, 259. 
Watering, stopping, &c., 261. 
Renewal of linings, 262. 
Winter forcing, 263. 
House for it, 264. 
Soil, &c., 265. 

Planting, temperature, &c., 266. 
Training, stopping, &c. , 266. 
Insects to which subject thrip 

and red-spider, 268. 
Diseases, 268. 
List of varieties, 269. 

FIG, THE. 

Its natural history, 176. 
Its introduction into Britain, 177. 



House for its cultivation, 180. 

Soil and formation of border, 181. 

List of varieties, 183. 

Propagation, 184. 

Time and manner of planting, 189. 

Training and general management 
the first year, 191. 

Pruning and pinching, 193. 

Root-pruning, 196. 

Plants in pots, 197. 

Training, pruning, &c., 197. 

Soil for these, 200. 

Forcing and general management, 
200. 

Temperature, watering, &c., 201. 

Ripening the fruit, 203. 

The second crop, 204. 

Insects and diseases to which sub- 
ject, 205. 

Packing the fruit, 206. 

GRAPE VINE, THE. 
Its natural history, 50. 
Its native country, 51. 
Extent of its former culture in 

England, 51. 
Sites for vineries, 52. 
Vinery for early forcing, 53. 
The "lean-to" vinery, 53. 
Heated borders for this, 55. 
Ventilation, 53. 
Vinery for late grapes, 56. 
Span-roofed vinery, 57. 
Aerated borders, 57. 
Drainage, 59. 

Composition of borders, 61. 
Varieties of grapes, 68. 
Selection for planting, 70. 
Preparation of young vines for 

planting, 71. 

Time and manner of planting, 77. 
Treatment the season they are 

planted, 81. 



320 



INDEX. 



Their management the second 



Their management the third and 
fruiting year, 90. 

Pruning for the first crop, 90. 

Time to commence forcing, 90. 

Temperature, 92. 

Moisture, 93. 

Ventilation, 95. 

Form for vinery against garden 
wall, 96. 

Weight of crop, thinning, disbud- 
ding, &c., 96. 

Spur-pruning for next season's 
crop, 98. 

Training, 100. 

Keeping grapes through the 
winter, 101. 

General management of borders, 
102. 

Their partial renewal, 103. 

Shelter from excessive rains, 103. 

Mulching, 104. 

Covering well-fermenting material 
and otherwise conserving heat. 
104. 

Renovating exhausted vines, 105. 

Pot-culture of grapes, 107. 

Inarching vines, 108. 

Setting up grapes for exhibition, 
110. 

Packing them, 112. 

Insects to which subject red- 
spider, 114. 

Thrip, 115. 

Mealy bug, 116. 

Phylloxera vastatrix, 116. 

Remarks by M. Planchon on, 118. 

First appearance of, 124. 

Its destructive ability, 126. 

Preventives against it, 128. 

Diseases shanking. 130. 

Mildew, 132. 

Rust, 133. 

Excrescences on under sides of 
leaves, 134. 

Scalding, 135. 

HEATING BY HOT WATER, A FEW 
OBSERVATIONS ON, 313. 

MELON, THE. 

Its native country, natural his- 
tory, &c., 207. 

Growing it in dung-beds or pits, 
210. 

Sowing the seed and management 
of the young plants, 211. 



Training and stopping, 213. 

Soil and planting, 214. 

Moulding up, temperature, 216. 

Impregnation, watering, &c., 217. 

Culture in houses, trained on 
wires near the glass, form of 
house, depth of soil, &c., 220. 

Preparing the plants, planting, 
&c., 223. 

Watering, &c., 224. 

Temperature and syringing, 225. 

Ventilation, 226. 

Impregnation, training, and stop- 
ping, 226. 

Very early forcing, 227. 

List of varieties, 229. 

Insects and diseases to which sub- 
ject, 229. 

NECTARINE, see Peach and Nectarine. 

OBSERVATIONS ON HEATING BY HOT 
WATER, 313. 

PEACH AND NECTARINE. 
Their natural history, native 

country, &c., 136. 
House for early forcing, 138. 
House when they are not required 

before July, 139. 
Drainage, depth and width of 

border, 143. 
Soil, 144. 

Varieties of peaches, 146. 
Of nectarines, 147. 
Propagation and selection of trees, 

147. 
Best stocks for different varieties, 

150. 

Planting, 151. 
Pruning and training, 152. 
Fan-training, 152. 
Seymour's system of training, 

157. 
Disbudding or summer pruning, 

159. 

Thinning the fruit, 161. 
Root-pruning, 162. 
Forcing and general management, 

time to commence forcing, 163. 
Dressing the trees and borders, 

164. 

Temperature, 165. 
Ventilation, 167. 
Moisture in the air and syringing, 

168. 

Setting the fruit, 169. 
Watering, 170. 



INDEX. 



321 



Kipening and gathering the fruit, 

Packing to be sent to a distance. 
172. 

Insects to which subject red- 
spider, 173. 

Green-fly, 173. 

Brown scale, 174. 

Thrip, 174. 

Diseases, 174. 

PlXE-APPLE. 

Its natural history, 1. 
Houses for its cultivation, 2. 
Those for summer growth, 3. 
For winter growth, 4. 
Pits for suckers, 5. 
Situation of the houses, 5. 
Amount of heat and hot-water 

pipes, 6. 

Objections to flat- roofed houses, 6. 
Steaming apparatus, 7. 
Arrangement of pipes, 7. 
Provision for watering, 8. 
Arrangement of plants, 8. 
Advantages of the tan and leaf 

bed, 8. 
Varieties, 9. 
The Queen, 9. 

Smooth-leaved Cayenne, 10. 
Black Jamaica, 10. 
White Providence, 10. 
Charlotte Rothschild, 11. 
Prince Albert, 11. 
Lambton Castle Seedling, 11. 
Soil and its preparation, 13. 
Propagation, 15. 
Suckers, 16. 
Potting of these, 16. 
Subsequent treatment, 17. 



Succession plants their spring 

treatment, 20. 

Their summer and autumn treat- 
ment, 27. 

Fruiting plants, 35. 
Selecting, arranging, and plunging 

them, 36. 
Retarding and keeping them after 

they are ripe, 40. 
How to keep a succession of ripe 

fruit all through the year, 42. 
Treatment of plants that miss 

fruiting, 45. 

The planting-out system, 46. 
Insects to which subject white 

scale, 47. 
Brown scale and mealy bug, 48. 

STRAWBERRY, THE. 
Its natural history, 231. 
How to secure the best runners for 

forcing, 232. 
Preparing these for their fruiting- 

pots, 233. 

Soil and potting, &c. , 234. 
Watering, 237. 
Protecting and resting:, 238. 
House for forcing, 239. 
Forcing, 240. 

Setting and thinning the fruit, 242. 
Insects to which subject, 245. 
Forcing in a greenhouse or pit, 

245. 

Tying up the fruit-stalks, 246. 
Packing them when ripe, 247. 
Preparing them for exhibition, 

248. 
Best varieties for forcing, 249. 

VINE, THE, see Grape Vine. 



THE END. 



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NORFOLK BROADS AND RIVERS; 

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Crown 8vo, 4s. 6d. 

ST JAMES'S GAZETTE. "Such books as Mr Roscoe's are our only 
guides to Continental sport ; nor could the traveller who desires to 
explore the resources of the rivers of Germany and of Switzerland 
desire a better companion than ' Rambles with a Fishing-Rod.' " 

SCOTSMAN. "A very delightful book." 

BELL'S LIFE IN LONDON. "It is a right pleasant pocket com- 
panion." 



14 Books on Rural Affairs. 

FIFTH EDITION, REVISED. 

THE MOOR AND THE LOCH. 

CONTAINING MINUTE INSTRUCTIONS IN ALL HIGH- 
LAND SPORTS, WITH WANDERINGS OVER CRAG AND 
CORRIE, FLOOD AND FELL. By JOHN COLQU- 
HOUN. Fifth Edition; to which is added, "RE- 
COLLECTIONS OF THE AUTHOR'S EARLY LIFE." 

2 vols. post 8vo, with Two Portraits and other Illustrations. 
Price 26s. 



ACADEMY. "In the present delightful volumes, however, he pre- 
sents all lovers of Scotland with the completest details of every High- 
land sport, on all of which he is an unexceptionable authority ; and 
with what many will value even more, a series of life-like sketches 
of the rarer and more interesting animals of the country. He has 
thus brought up to the present level of knowledge the history of all 
the scarce birds and beasts of Scotland Henceforth it must neces- 
sarily find a place in the knapsack of every northern tourist who is 
fond of our wild creatures, and is simply indispensable in every 
Scotch shooting-lodge." 

SATURDAY REVIEW. "We should recommend fishers to study 
carefully all the chapters on fishing for salmon, loch trout, sea trout, 
and yellow trout, whatever may be their experience or erudition. 
They will find general hints of immense use which they can apply 
to that local knowledge of their own river or ' water ' which no books 
can teach, and which Mr Colquhoun himself would equally have to 
learn. But no chapter ought to be skipped, even by a reader who 
aspires to far less than the fourfold distinction of a Highland hunter, 
which consists in killing a red-deer, an eagle, a salmon, and a seal." 

THE WORLD. " The book is one written by a gentleman for gentle- 
men, healthy in tone, earnest in purpose, and as fresh, breezy, and 
life-giving as the mountain air of the hills amongst which the sport 
it chronicles is carried on." 



Books on Rural Affairs. 



Specimen Illustration from l THE MOOR AND THE LOCH. ' 




ROEBUCK CLEANING HIS HORNS. 
'The Moor and the Loch,' page 136.) 



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