This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V18", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
J. McB., Boston, Mass.; says: " Would you be so kind as to let me know through the columns of your valuable periodical what has caused the failure of a bed of Neapolitan violets, which I had planted last fall in a compost of maiden loam, decomposed manure, one-fourth leaf mould, and a small proportion of sand?
" The house in which I planted them is a span roof running east and west. Parallel and to the south of this house runs another house of the same size and shape. So it was always partially shaded by the house south of it, thereby preventing excessive heat from the sun. When I brought the plants in from the open ground, they appeared to be in a very healthy condition, and continued to appear so for a few weeks afterwards.
" Some time in December I discovered they had become sickly, and, upon examination, I found formed on the fibrous roots small tubercles resembling diminutive Gladioli bulbs. Now, sad to relate, my violets are all dead. I am at a loss to know the cause of their death. Enclosed I send you a sample of their roots.
" What I should like to know is, have the tubercles caused death? If so, what caused the tubercles? Belying on your authority, I trust you will give your opinion in the next number, as you would confer a favor upon me as well as perhaps others who may have similar experience."
[We have never seen this disease before. It is evidently caused by an insect similar to the Phylloxera in the grape vine. Send a few fresh specimens in damp moss to Prof. C. V. Riley, St. Louis, Mo. They will be of great interest to him. - Ed. G. M.]