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.
Mr. Horace J. Smith, writes as follows in regard to a State Forester, to the Manayunk Sentinel, and we understand that it is likely a bill in accordance therewith will be introduced into the Pennsylvania Legislature, during the present session:
"I supplement my previous articles on ' Forestry,' ' The Value of the Catalpa,' and ' Forest Corporations,' by suggesting the appointment by the. State of a Forester. The Act creating the office should require that he be a man of approved attainments and practically well acquainted with Arboriculture, who shall also be familiar with methods of statistical inquiry. He shall collect data as to the annual consumption, importation, and exportation of Timber and other Forest products, the amount of Timber used for fencing, and the value of the labor expended thereon, the probable future supply and demand for Lumber; the means best adapted to the preservation and renewal of Forests; the influence, if any, of Forests upon the climate, and the flow of streams in the Commonwealth. He shall specify particularly or generally, where Forests should be planted for the promotion of the interest of the Commonwealth, indicating the kinds most suitable and profitable; the best methods of collecting and saving seeds; and the propagation of trees.
He shall give attention also to the subject of insects destructive to Forests, the introduction of new trees, and Forest industries valuable to the community, the laws bearing upon Forest products, the unification of the customs of measurement of lumber, Forest instruments, Forest, appraisement, protection of Forests from depredation, the collection of specimen blocks of the various woods of the State, and preparations illustrating the damage to trees caused by insects, rodents, etc, for the Museum of the State Board of Agriculture. His services in the State as Consulting Expert, or for lectures upon Forestry, shall be at the disposal of any citizen or corporation of the Commonwealth for a period not exceeding - days, on the payment of $ per day and traveling expenses, under rules prepared by the State Board of Agriculture. He shall report to the State Board of Agriculture annually or oftener if called upon, the work he has done, and on the subjects mentioned above, with such suggestions for the framing of Laws as may seem to him important.
"The passage, or even the introduction of such a law, will call attention to this subject, and ultimately tend to bring about the accomplishment of a work, universally considered by those who have given attention to the matter, of the utmost importance. Other States will doubtless follow our example, and it is altogether possible that our great Pennsylvania Railroad may take the question up and appoint one or more Foresters of their own, who shall examine all that pertains to the enormous supply needed for their gigantic work".
We heartily approve of such a measure as this. It would be one of the cheapest investments the State or States could make. Our only fear is that the Legislature could not be brought to see the full importance of such an office, and be perhaps inclined to look on a small salary as a full equivalent. Nothing less than $2,000 a year, or if the forester is to bear his own traveling expenses, and he ought to travel the State extensively, $3,000 a year should be thought of; and it ought to be higher, and doubtless would be made so in a few years, when the full importance of the work should be seen.
And then again there are difficulties in getting the proper persons into the office. If such a person as Prof. J. T. Rothrock, for instance, who has been brought up to agriculture, and yet has a thorough knowledge of arboriculture and botany, and is a clear writer and admirable teacher, could be induced to take such a position, there would be no mistake about the value of a State Forester.