As a warm lover of this beautiful autumnal flower, and as one of those who have written something about it, I should like to say a few words on the paper by Mr Morris in your last number, inasmuch as while he has been evidently successful in his own cultivation, he is rather sweeping in his condemnation of those whose experiences are of a less happy character.

With regard to the statement, that wherever there is loss, it is occasioned by some carelessness in the management of the bulbs - I must really demur to this, not so much as a vindication of myself as of others. Without doubt, the best Gladiolus-grower we have in the south of England, perhaps in England at all, is Mr Kelway of Layport, in Somersetshire. Last year he grew 50,000 bulbs, and told me he had not a single diseased bulb amongst them, while this year, under precisely the same treatment, he had a large quantity of bulbs so affected; and my excellent friend, M. Souchet, tells me that this year he has an appreciable loss from disease, and I suppose Mr Morris would hardly say he is careless in the growth or management of his bulbs. My own opinion is that it is a disease, somewhat analogous to the Potato disease; that it may be increased by bad management, but that no amount of care can ward it off.

With regard to manuring, I quite agree with Mr Morris that no fresh dung ought to come in contact with the bulbs; but I could secure this more effectually than he has done by placing a good layer of cow-dung beneath the soil, and not incorporate it in any way with it; in fact, treating it similarly with the mode adopted in the case of the Persian Ranunculus, and so allowing the rootlets to penetrate into the layer of cow-dung, and to draw their sustenance from it when most they require such a stimulus. I have tried it this year, and am so pleased with the result that I shall adopt it for the future.

Mr Morris is assuredly mistaken as to the injury occasioned by cutting off the haulm when it is green. He may, of course, easily find reasons why such a practice is bad, as I have known doctors ready to find out reasons for the most diametrically opposite practice in cases of medical treatment; but I can tell him this, that those imported bulbs which he holds up as models are all treated in this way. I have seen acres of them taken up, without any discrimination as to one being riper than another, and I may add that, when left too long in the ground, they are liable to throw out fresh roots, which detracts from the strength of the bulb. My own bulbs are treated in this way, and although I do not pretend to be a better grower than my neighbours, I can speak confidently of the health of my bulbs, both last season and this; and I have not noticed that those taken up with the haulms green have shrank more afterwards than those where the haulm was withering.

As to the merits of the various flowers we are not likely to differ. I have only to add that, large as some of the new flowers are, they are far surpassed by some which are in process of multiplication, and I do not believe that we have yet reached the Ultima Thule of this beautiful flower. D. Deal.