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.
In the July number of the Monthly I noticed a few remarks on the double flowering Chinese Cherry. I should like to have shown you a fine specimen of the old pure white double flowering Cherry that we had here in full blossom about May 10th. Imagine a Cherry tree about forty feet high and covered with millions of its pure white double blossoms. Could any one wish for anything more magnificent? Why is it not planted more extensively? You have done your readers a service by calling their attention to these handsome ornamental trees. A tree of the old variety should be found in every collection. Have any of the readers of the Monthly flowered this rosy pink variety ? A full description of it, together with the size of their specimen, would be interesting to many of your readers.
Another rare tree, and one well worthy of general cultivation, is Kolreuteria paniculata. We have a few specimens here, about twenty feet high, and it is now covered with its large panicles of yellow flowers. This variety attains to the size of a small tree only, and on this account can be planted in places where other trees would occupy too much space. This tree deserves much more attention than it receives, and should be more extensively planted. It is a native of China, and is perfectly hardy here.
In a note to the Monthly, some time since, I mentioned Magnolia macrophylla. I omitted to state that it is perfectly hardy here. It flowers about the first week in June. The flowers average when fully expanded thirteen to fifteen inches in diameter and the leaves average over two feet in length. This tree ripens a quantity of seed every year. M. tripetala is another very good hardy variety, but can in no way compare with M. macrophylla. We have several specimens here about twenty feet high. This variety is rather a faster grower than M. macrophylla, but does not form such a handsome tree; it is apt to grow rather crooked, and on this account should be kept tied to a stake while young. M. conspicua, a Chinese species, forms a tree of superb beauty when in full blossom. I should like to have shown you our tree of this variety when it was in bloom; it was the admiration of all who saw it. Our specimen is about thirtyfive feet high. This variety is perfectly hardy, and ripens a quantity of seed yearly.
These three varieties should be extensively planted.
I was very much interested in reading Mrs. D. W.'s description of the wild flowers of South Carolina, and 1 hope to see many more such articles describing the native flowers of our Southern and Western States in the Monthly hereafter. But why is it that such beautiful plants have not been introduced into cultivation before this? What could be more handsome than the Styrax and the Andromeda as described by Mrs. D.W. And the Sarracenias; why should they be left unseen in the Carolina meadows ? Is there not in South Carolina some enterprising person who would form and offer for sale collections of her native plants? It would pay some one to do so. I must confess I envy Mrs. D. W. her drives among such beautiful plants. By the way, however, is Sarracenia purpurea found growing wild on Long Island ? I have often searched for it, but in vain; and now I am told it does not grow on Long Island. What say you or any of your readers ?
I have a plant, a Cyperus, under the name of Cyperus Lapus. Now I see in the catalogues C. Lepus, C. Laxus and C. Laxpus. I suppose they are all the same. If so, which is the correct name? [There is a C. laxus, and a C. leptos. Ed. G. M].
Will Mr. John Paget please give through the Monthly his method of forcing strawberries, and such other information that in his opinion be necessary to enable a person to force them successfully ? His success with strawberries is remarkable. What variety or varieties would he recommend ?
Will some of your readers please give us their experience with the Beauty and Sharpless Seedling Strawberries, and how they compare in size, flavor and productiveness with Chas. Downing and Seth Boyden ?
In the June number of the Monthly, page 176, I noticed a few remarks by Mr. Isaac Hicks on the Meriam Pear. We have one dwarf tree of it here, and that is enough. It casts its leaves about the tenth of August, and besides I have never seen one pear on the tree. I think our tree is correct to name, as we obtained it from Hovey & Co. Louise Bonne de Jersey is casting its leaves very early this season. Some of our trees have only a few leaves left on them at this early date.
Have any of the readers of the Monthly fruited Hovenia dulcis ? I am told that it is a new Japanese fruit. Can this be true ? I doubt it; as I do not recollect ever seeing the name before. What is it, anyhow ? Will some one give me some information concerning it ?