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.
There is nothing in the following to show where it comes from. It appears to be from some place in Ohio. Correspondents should be careful to note their localities, as it is half the interest of inquiries through the Monthly.
"Can you tell me something about under-draining, the price per rod for drain tiles, and where to procure them. A correspondent of the Ohio Farmer recommends the tiles manufactured in Drake County, 0., and says underdraining pays on the capital invested in tiles, in one ordinary season, front twenty-five to one hundred per cent; and that one should always use the genuine drain tiles, with oval cavity. There is not a garden or orchard in this section of country underdrained. Now, if you will suggest something that will make our lands more productive, and reclaim the worn-out hill-sides, how much greater benefactor would you be than " he who causes two blades of grass to grow where but one grew before." Fruits of almost every variety do well here, pears, however, do better than peaches or apples, and but little subject to the blight; there are pear trees on my place nearly forty years old, planted by my father soon after settling here in 1836, and some of them, standing in the yard, were never cultivated. Do you think it would pay here (six miles from a railroad), to grow pears for market? Would you plant standards or dwarf trees? Are the former less subject to blight than the latter. They have proven to be so with me.
The dew-berry is found here in our old fields, sending out runners ten feet in length, and ripens nearly as early as the strawberry, and by some considered about as good a berry - can you say anything in its favor!"
[Underdraining is not profitable in ordinary land, unless one proposes to hold it for a number of years. Americans seldom feel sure of this. In orcharding we prefer planting on the ground surface, drawing the soil up about the roots to cover with, that is, making ridges or hillocks, in wet ground rather than to underdrain it. A few dwarf pear orchards have been profitable, but those who have made most on pears did it by standards. - Ed. G. M.]