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.
Some learned man has asserted that the prairies of the West are treeless because the texture of the soil is unsuited to the growth of trees. The experience in tree raising on these prairies seem to prove that neither the texture nor composition of the soil is antagonistic to the growth of forest trees. We consider ourselves as far within the limits of the "Great American Desert," yet we have some examples of tree growth that are encouraging. The A. T. & S. F. B. E. Co. has an experimental forest tree nursery at this place in which the adaptability of various kinds of timber to our climate and soil is tested by actual trial. During the past Summer we were both surprised and gratified to learn that Black Walnut trees from seed planted in 1873, were bearing several specimens of fruit. It seemed to be doing pretty well for this timber to bear nuts at five years from the seed; but Now we have a case that even excels that for precocity. At a late meeting of the Reno County Horticultural Society, Mr. C. Bisher, informed us that he had during the past Fall gathered nuts from Black Walnut trees, the seed of which were planted in the Spring of 1875. The trees are about three inches in diameter and twelve feet high.
How is that for growth? and for precocious bearing too ! To us denizens of the "desert" it is full of promise in the future.