This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V21", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
An American citizen of Teutonic proclivities went into a prominent lager beer saloon and called for one beer and some of the best Lim-burger cheese. The flavor of the cheese not pleasing him, he called the proprietor and denounced him for not keeping a first-class article. First-class in this case means the loudest smell. The proprietor - a German who has had his eye teeth cut - took in the situation at a glance. Casually looking up, he observed the American citizen had a pair of very large feet reclining on the table in close proximity to the cheese. "Sherusalim!" exclaimed he, " takes dem feets down and gift der scheeze a schanse".
Now I would like to observe to Mr. Henderson, to give the leaves a chance. Don't putty up one end of a cutting and throw it upside down in water, and expect the cutting to carry on its normal functions. A man can breathe through his nose, but stop up his mouth so that he cannot take food, and what is the consequence? Why, the man will die. And this rule holds likewise in plant life. Why do we clean the leaves of our plants ? Is it not for the purpose of keeping the breathing pores open, so the plant can perform its functions of exhalation and respiration ? How is it that a cutting of Coleus, etc., if thrown in a shady place, will root and grow without its stem being covered? And what sustains the cuttings in the propagating bed and enables them to become callous and form roots ? Is not the plant sustained through its leaves, and thereby enabled to root and grow?
Now Mr. Henderson partly agrees that Brom-elaceous plants do receive nutriment from the surrounding atmosphere. And why not other plants, too? Is not Mr. Henderson's argument a Summer joke, of which he is the centre, and intended to stir up his fellow florists from the lethargy of the heat and dull business ?
In conclusion, I would like to know why it is you cannot grow cauliflower in Philadelphia? Here, where I am, we can grow it as easy as cabbage. Is it that in the former case you have not the saline atmosphere which it needs, while in this place the air is full off it, and therefore the plant breathes it and laughs and grows fat ?