This section is from the book "The Gardener's Monthly And Horticulturist V24", by Thomas Meehan. See also: Four-Season Harvest: Organic Vegetables from Your Home Garden All Year Long.
Our readers may remember that the writer tried linseed oil on his own fruit trees with admirable results, and fortified by this experiment gave the result of his experience to the readers of the Gardener's Monthly. But others who tried it afterwards killed their trees. We give the following from the London Journal of Horticulture, as it shows the same varying experience there:
"On opening the Journal of Horticulture this morning, I was surprised to see an old letter of mine again appearing in print. The two upright pear trees alluded to in my letter were not injured in the slightest degree by the painting of boiled linseed oil which my gardener gave them, but it was "all over "with the scale, and the trees were not infested with that pest again.
"Three years ago, an upright-trained apple tree was painted with this oil; care, however, was taken not to touch the flower buds or the leading shoots of the year. This tree is now in good, healthy, fruit-bearing condition, and is quite free from scale. My gardener has also painted a peach tree. The last year's growth and the spurs were not painted, and the result was most satisfactory. Care must be taken to obtain pure linseed oil, as much inferior oil is now sold under the name of boiled linseed oil.
" I feel I am so much indebted to Mr. W'm. Taylor for his admirable communications to our Journal, that I shall be most willing to answer any further questions he may think proper to ask on this subject. - C M.
["A letter will be published next week from a gardener of great experience, who has found linseed oil dangerous, and he does not advise its use as an insecticide. If in the meantime any one applies the oil to fruit trees, it is important that the above injunction be borne in mind, and the oil be obtained pure."]