Should the weather be cold and dull, be cautious in the application of fire-heat, unless it be in the case of trees in full bloom, to keep up a circulation of dry air: go over the blooms at mid-day with a camel-hair brush, and impregnate especially shy-setting sorts, such as Noblesse. Do not exceed 55° at night till the fruit has set and begun swelling freely. On fine afternoons syringe all trees not in bloom; but when dull and cold, be content with sprinkling the floors. Prune and tie later houses, cleaning and dressing them as recommended for Vines; and if the borders be dry inside, give a good soaking of water after they are top-dressed with manure. Top-dressing with manure in the case of young trees in new borders is not desirable, as they have a tendency to grow too strong. Disbud the growths early. We prefer the mixed system of both disbudding and pinching, and have observed that blooms on spurs are not so subject to drop off, and generally set better than on long young growths - especially if not well ripened.

In forcing, begin with a low temperature - 45° during cold nights, increased to 55° when in bloom, is sufficient, with 10° more by day with sun, and give air on all favourable occasions to strengthen both wood and bloom buds.

Peach Forcing #1

Still continue to force with caution if the weather be cold. Do not much exceed the temperature recommended last month for the various stages. Gently syringe with tepid water when the fruit is set, giving a vigorous syringing or two to free those just set from their old blooms. Pay particular attention to inside borders, and see that they do not become too dry; and except in the case of young vigorous trees, manure-water may be given to them after the fruit is formed. Trees in bloom that require a circulation of dry air must at the same time be so ventilated as to prevent strong currents of frosty air, which so frequently prevail at this season, and which are fatal to the fructifying organs, and injurious to the tender young leaves. Where there is a great superabundance of young fruit formed, thin off a portion of the smallest regularly all over the trees; but let this be done by degrees, leaving the final thinning till the fruit stones and all danger of its dropping off is over. Prune late houses, and in doing so avoid leaving too much wood to crowd the trees and render fine mature growths for next year more uncertain.

Dress them over with a mixture of sulphur, cow-manure, soot, and a little soft soap, especially on soils that are productive of red-spider - namely, dry gravelly soil. Complete the planting of young trees as soon as possible now; and in cutting young trees back avoid the too-common practice of cutting "hard back," which simply retards the trees for twelve months at least. It is best to cut back no further than to mature wood, and to regulate and balance the growths by summer pinching and disbudding where such are required. Disbud and pinch forward trees as soon as the growths are an inch or two long, and do it by degrees instead of all at once.

Peach Forcing #2

If the weather be cold and sunless, force with the same caution recommended last month. To force Peaches at a high temperature by dint of hard forcing is never safe, far less so till after the stoning stage. Do not exceed 55° to 58° at night until they begin to take their second swelling; then, if the fruit are required early, the heat may range to 60 in cold, and 65° in mild weather, especially when the house can be shut up early with sun-heat. See that inside borders are kept properly moist, and syringe all houses where the fruit are set in fine days. Keep a sharp look-out for green-fly, and never let it get a footing; more especially is this pest dangerous to trees just budding into leaf and full bloom. It is easily destroyed by tobacco - smoke. Last month's directions can still be carried out in late and succession houses. All trees under glass, where there is no command of fire-heat, should be retarded and kept as late as possible, for if kept close and forwarded early into bloom, a risk of losing the crop by late frosts is incurred.

Peach Forcing #3

Peaches now ripening require a free circulation of air, or flavour will be deficient. Put aside all leaves that shade the fruit, so that the sun can lay on that mellow rich colour which is peculiar to the Peach, and without which they look insipid. Syringe freely on fine afternoons later crops that are swelling off, and pay great attention to the state of the border where it is principally inside. Give heavy waterings of manure-water when required, and mulch with a light coating of finely-disintegrated manure. In tying in the wood and disbudding all the latest houses, let no more be laid in than there is ample room for; or, in fact, no more than is needed to furnish the trees with bearing wood for next season. Thin the fruit by degrees, but not finally till after they have stoned. Keep green-fly and red-spider from gaining a footing. Daily syringing is the best way to keep the trees clean. Pinch any shoots that make rampant growths in young trees, or they will rob the weaker ones of sap, and destroy the balance of growth which is so desirable. Trees that have been planted two or three years in new borders are apt to grow undesirably strong.

A good way of counteracting this tendency is to crop them rather heavily.