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. C. T., Farber, Mo., writes: " I have tried to get information of the American Agriculturist how to manage thorn seeds like this I enclose. I cannot find out why I have failed two different times to get these seeds to grow. I froze them all winter and planted in good soil, but as yet not a single plant appears. It grows abundantly here, a natural hedge plant; stocky, hardy, dwarf, very thorny, and so thick naturally that small birds make their nests in it with perfect safety from large ones. I have lost several years in trying, and now appeal to you. Please tell me all the details of treatment, as I have a lot of seeds now buried with some crab-apples also, with which, I am going to make some hedges, if I have to dig up the roots. I have had the same luck with these as with the others. I am greatlv dissatisfied with the Osage, on account of its rampant growth and its baneful influence on the crops contiguous to it. I believe nature furnishes us, right at hand, a hedge plant far better in many ways than the osage."
[The seeds were of Crategus crusgalli, the cock-spur hawthorn. Many attempts have been made to make a hedge out of it, which it will do in from 10 to 15 years - entirely too slow for the average American. Then it is liable to mildews and moulds, and blights and borers, so that after all their waiting, it does not please our posterity. The seeds grow easily if you keep them one year in a barrel of wet earth, and sow them the following spring; at the end of that season they will be an inch high. When you get a good hedge from your own sowing, we should be pleased to be alive to-look at it, - Ed. G. M.]