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Zonale Geranium Miss Martin. — A very fine variety; foliage lively green, with dark stripe; flower soft, rosy peach, very round, of immense size, the petals overlapping.
If the plate does not exaggerate, this is one of the finest varieties yet produced.
We copy from "The Cottage Gardener " the following list of the hewer chrysanthemums which have proved good : —
Of the flowers of 1866, the following are those most deserving of cultivation: Amabilis, delicate blush, incurved ; Compactum, an excellent conservatory flower, blooming early, and of admirable habit; Countess of Granville, fine white, a reflexed flower of great beauty; Crimson Velvet, beautiful velvety crimson, the darkest and brightest of all the high-colored chrysanthemums; Gloria Mundi, a splendid brilliant yellow, a seedling from the Jardin des Plantes, and superior to that fine flower; Golden Beverly, a fine canary-colored flower, a sport from that fine deep flower Beverly; Hereward, large, purple, with a silvery back to the florets, very compact; Iris, medium-sized, very double, and compact; John Salter, reddish crimson, shaded with orange; Josiah Wedgewood, rosy carmine, close and compact; Miss Eyre, blush, late-flowering anemone, of medium size, and dwarf habit; Mr. Gladstone, dark-reddish chestnut, incurved; Sylvia, rosy lilac, with silvery back.
Of the Pompones of 1866, there are Fairy Nymph, fine pure white, with round florets; Little Beauty, white, bordered with delicate rosy pink; Marie Stuart, lilac blush, with sulphur centre; Prince Victor, dark-red maroon; Rose d'Amour, clear rose, very full and free; and Torfrida, bright golden amber.
The following list may be useful to those proposing to plant summer-beds of variegated plants : —
Half-hardy plants with ornamental foliage (annuals, or perennials proving effective in the first season), —
Perilla Nankinensis, purple foliage, a foot and a half to two feet. Amarattthus melancholicus ruber, blood-red foliage, a foot and a half to two feet. Oxalis tropceoloides (O. comiculata rubra), dark bronzy foliage, a half foot. Salvia argentea, silvery foliage, two feet. Marvel of Peru, gold-striped, two feet. Cineraria maritima, silvery foliage, a foot and a half. Canna indica aurea vittata, golden flowers, four feet. C. supcrba, scarlet, three feet. C. Warscewicsii, striped, four feet . C. Sellowii, scarlet, four feet. C. bicolor, red and yellow, two feet. C. Fintelmanni, yellow, three feet. C. Nepalensis, yellow, three feet. C. gigantea, red and yellow, seven feet. Ricinus Borbonensis, large foliage, six feet. R. lividus, green fruit, red stems, six feet. R. macrocarpus, whitish foliage, six feet. R. roseus superbus, rose-colored fruit, six feet. R. sanguineus, red foliage, five feet. R. viridis spinosus, green spiny fruit, three feet. Zea faponica, striped leaves, six feet.
To these add /resine Hebestii and Coleus Verschafeltii, — the latter doing better in a somewhat shady situation, and the former in full sunlight, — and we have a very good selection, which may, however, be indefinitely increased by the addition of such plants as Wigandia, Calocasia esculenta, and the different varieties of tobacco.
Canna Discolor. — This variety, which has been distributed under the name of viridiflora (? iridiflora), is by far the finest plant we have for ornamental planting.
Nothing can exceed the brilliancy and delicate contrasts of the leaf-markings, or the majesty and vigor of its growth. The foliage is deep green, beautifully marbled and banded with dark-reddish purple; the single leaves measuring three to four feet in length, and more than twelve inches across. The leaf-stalks are very deep red, contrasting well with the greenish under surface of the leaves.
A plant set out from a thumb-pot in the latter part of May, measured, when taken up Oct. I, nine feet in height, and twelve feet in circumference: it had then shown no disposition to flower. — E. S. R., Jun.
Ornamental Grasses. — Mr. Abbey, in "The English Journal of Horticulture," gives the following list of ornamental grasses : —
Pennisetum longistylum, Eleusine caput-Medusce, Bromus Schraderi, Briza maxima, Agrostis nebulosa, Tricholcena rosea, Lagurus ovatus, Hordeum jubatum, Brizopyrum siculum, A venx sterilis, Setaria macrochceta, Paspalum elegans.
George U. Skinner. — Every one interested in the culture of orchids will especially regret to hear of the death of Mr. George Ure Skinner. Although occupied by commercial pursuits, being one of the firm of Klee, Skinner, & Co., of Guatemala, yet he found time to pursue his favorite researches in natural history. His residence in Central America probably led him to the particular study of orchids, with which the forests of the district abound; and with them his name is now thoroughly associated. For about thirty years, we have known him engaged in their collection; and some one of their genera should do honor to his name. Cattleya Skinneri is a minor remembrance of him. One genus, worthy of him, records two of his names; but it belongs to the natural order Scrophulariacece. We refer to Uroskimuria spectabilis, thus mentioned by the late Dr. Lindley: "For this beautiful plant our gardens are indebted to G. U. Skinner, Esq., the most generous of merchants, the most eager of collectors, to whom or to whose assistance the botany of Western Mexico and Guatemala owes more than to all the travellers who have visited those regions. Nothing more worthy of his name could well be found; for the plant is very rare, very showy, and now secured to our gardens: we therefore trust that verbal pedants will not quarrel with the manner we have contrived to escape from the difficulty of there being already a Skinneria in the botanical field, but agree with us that Ure Skinner may be fairly blended into a name which shall unmistakably record the labors of one who has so signally benefited the science of florticulture." He died of yellow-fever on the 9th of January at Aspinwall, Isthmus of Panama, at the age of sixty-two; and it adds painfully to the feeling for his loss to know that he was journeying to Guatemala to complete arrangements for retiring from the firm, preparatory to taking up his residence in England permanently.
He was a native of Scotland ; and his father, the Very Rev. John Skinner, was Dean of Dunkeld and Dunblane, who died at Forfar in 1841, and who was son of Bishop Skinner, Primus of the Episcopal Church of Scotland. The bishop, we believe, wrote the well-known "Reel of Tullochgorum."
Mr. Skinner, whose death we now record, was not only a Fellow of the Linna;an and other kindred societies, but was ever ready by his counsel and his purse to aid others who were pursuing the sciences those societies fostered. He advised with Hartweg as to the latter's researches in Mexico; and he supplied Warscewicz with money at the time of his extreme need, when he had been abandoned by the Belgian Association, which had sent him to South America to collect plants.
LlLIUM TENUIFOLIUM, L. AURATUM, AND TRITOMA UVARIA, SEED-SOWING.
— The seed should be sown early in May in pots or pans, well drained, in a compost of turfy loam, peat, and leaf-mould, with the addition of one-sixth of silver sand. The seeds should be covered with fine soil to a depth equal to the diameter of the seed. The pots should be gently watered, and placed in a hotbed with a temperature of 70°. When the plants appear, admit air, and harden them off, or remove them to a vinery at work, where they should be placed in a light, airy situation. If there is not a vinery at command, remove them to a greenhouse. Keep them well supplied with water, and in September gradually withhold, discontinuing the supply after October, all but a little now and then to keep the soil moist, but not wet. The liliums should have the seeds placed so far apart, that they can grow in the pots or pans as sown (an inch will suffice); but the tritoma-plants should, when large enough to handle, be potted off singly in small pots, and the soil in these should be kept moister in winter than for the liliums. The liliums also should be potted in November, singly, in four-and-ahalf inch pots, or three may be planted in a seven-inch pot. They should be kept in a cool greenhouse. — Cottage Gardener.
H Yacinths Done Blooming. — After blooming, they should be hardened off, or kept beyond the reach of frost, in an airy, light situation. When all danger of frost is past, they may be planted in the open ground, covering the crowns of the bulbs with two to three inches of soil. Those grown in water are of little or no value after blooming, and those forced in pots are not worth forcing a second time.
Culture Of Roses In Pots In Greenhouses.— The best roses for greenhouse culture are the finer varieties of the China and tea-scented; the latter especially, on account of their peculiar and delightful fragrance; but the Bourbons and hybrid perpetuals must be included. The following varieties I have found good : —
China. — Madame Breon, Mrs. Bosanquet, Triomphe de Gand, Prince Charles, Henri Cinq, La Sdduisante, Infidelites de Lisette, Louis Philippe, Napoleon, Clara Sylvain (generally classed with the Tea-scented), and Fabvier.
The Editors much regret being obliged to delay the conclusion of Dr. Kirtland's able and valuable article upon the magnolia until next month. The f ivors of our correspondents have been so numerous, and the interest felt in the success of "The American Journal of Horticulture" so great, that we are scarcely able to reply to the many communications, and to express our thanks for the kindly greetings we receive. Articles on cypripedia and Wardian cases, prairie-flowers, orchids, the vegetable-garden, lawn-grasses, new apples, hardy clematis, strawberry-culture, wild-flowers, and lilies, are on hand, and will appear during the summer.
I. L. R., Taunton. — Please name some of the best currants. — Red and white, Dutch, La Versaillaise, Dana's transparent.
E. B., Providence, R. I. — Does the Concord grape keep well after it is plucked from the vine ?— No: it soon loses its flavor. Then, as its skin is thin, many berries crack in handling, and soon decay.
Pyrus, Norwich, Conn. — Would you advise severe trimming or pruning of pear-trees ? and at what season of the year should you prefer to prune ?— I would not prune severely. Take out all branches that cross or interfere with each other, and head in the leading shoots where they have made excessive growth; thus keeping the tree compact and symmetrical. Would much prefer to prune in June; but would do it any time until October. Some do it in March; but we do not regard it as a favorable time.
Young Gardener, Marion, Mass. — Does it injure grape-vines to bleed ?— It is generally supposed to be injurious to trim grape-vines so late as to cause them to bleed; but we have known vines to meet with accidents by which they bled profusely, and we could not perceive that they suffered in any degree in consequence.
B. B. M., Bellows Falls, Vt. — How deep should grape-vines be planted at the North ?— Not more than three or four inches deep. If planted very deep, the lower roots decay. The roots of grape-vines run near the surface; and they should be so planted, especially in the Northern States, that they may get the full benefit of the heat of the sun.
A Friend, Newton, Mass. — How shall I keep my cherry-trees in a healthy condition? They now burst the bark, causing the gum to exude. — Manure less, and grow them slower. If the land is very rich, sow it down to grass, and check the growth of the trees. Many cherry-trees have been lost by forcing them. The cherry-tree will not bear high manuring.
VOL. I. 4°
A. C. C, Dedham, Mass. — I have a Fulton pear-tree that was grafted on a very thrifty stock, that grew well, and gave fruit a year or two, but now seems to be dying; the extremities of the branches turning black. Is this a common thing with this variety ? — The Fulton pear is a poor grower, especially after it begins to fruit. In your case, probably, the tree received too great a check; the stock being a vigorous free grower, and the scion a slow or poor grower. Some varieties are almost sure to kill the stock on which they are grafted. The Cross and Collins pears are among those that work in that way.
M. B. W., Newburyport. — What are some of the most profitable grapes to grow for market in Massachusetts? — Concord, because it is large and handsome, of fair quality, and generally ripens; Hartford Prolific, on account of its earliness, though there is a serious objection to it because the fruit drops from the stem; Delaware, as it always commands a ready sale at high prices.
Is it necessary to trench the land for a vineyard ? — No: plough deep, and manure well with thoroughly decomposed manure, and set your vines. If your land is good enough for corn, you will get satisfactory results.
A Subscriber, Worcester, Mass. — Can peach-trees be grown in pots or tubs? and how should they be treated ?—Yes; and give very good results. They maybe set in twelve, fourteen, or sixteen inch earthen pots, or in tubs of about the same size, well shortened in when set, and should be well pruned all the time. Use good soil, and pack close in the pot. They should be well watered in summer, occasionally with manure-water. If the pots are plunged in the earth, they will be less trouble. Keep them in the cellar in winter for protection. Will give fruit the second year after being set. Try it.
Small Garden, Boston. — What are some of the best winter pears ? — Lawrence, Winter Nelis, Hovey, Caen de France, Beurrii d'Aremberg, Glout Morceau, and Vicar of Winkfield.
Fruit-grower. — Should strawberry-plantations be made in spring, or autumn? — Spring is preferred by all market-gardeners North. When only a few are to be set, it may be done in August; but they require more care if planted then.
Vitis, Marblehead. — How deep would you plant dwarf pear-trees ?— So that the quince-stock should be at least an inch below the surface of the ground. Is it profitable to graft grape-vines extensively? — We think not. It will do where you wish to bring forward rapidly new and rare sorts. It is cheaper and better to root up and plant anew than to try and graft a large number of old vines.
Scotchman. — The broom is not perfectly hardy in Massachusetts, but lives and blooms well with a slight winter protection of boughs. The white variety is more tender than the yellow, and probably would be winter-killed. The furze, or gorse, is not hardy enough to bear our climate.