This section is from the book "The Gardener V1", by William Thomson. Also available from Amazon: The New Organic Grower: A Master's Manual of Tools and Techniques for the Home and Market Gardener.
Could you or any of your numerous correspondents assign the cause of our Calceolarias going off since being planted out?Aurantia multiflora was planted out with balls four inches square, and well watered before the holes were finally filled in, and to all appearance plants could not have been more healthy; but in a few days after being planted, they commenced to drop off in twos and threes, and still are going, and if they continue going at the same rate, there won't be one left before the end of the season. Upon minute examination no trace of any insect can be found. The disease seems to affect the plants first at the junction with the roots and the stem, and then spreads both ways in a white mouldy decay.
The first appearance of the decay is seen in the plants flagging, and in a few days after they die right out. Full-grown plants drop off daily in this way.
Last season we lost all Prince of Orange, and a few Aurantia multi-flora. Most of the dark varieties have suffered severely too.
The disease (if it can be called such) has swept some of our neighbouring places nearly clean of Calceolarias. A. Kemp.
[Yellow Gem is less subject to die in this way than any other we know. - Ed].