This section is from "The Horticulturist, And Journal Of Rural Art And Rural Taste", by P. Barry, A. J. Downing, J. Jay Smith, Peter B. Mead, F. W. Woodward, Henry T. Williams. Also available from Amazon: Horticulturist and Journal of Rural Art and Rural Taste.
A series of interesting experiments have been conducted during the past two years, by William Saunders, on the grounds of the Agricultural Department, at Washington, D. C, in relation to pear blight. A pear tree which was badly blighted on its main trunk was made the subject of special experiment. Nearly all of the bark was blighted within three feet of the ground, only about an inch and a half in width being left to connect the upper part of the tree with the unblighted bark at the base. The affected part was removed and the sap-wood left quite exposed to view; but to prevent injury from the air it was at once coated with a composition of carbolic acid, sulphur, and lime, largely diluted with water. After the lapse of two years the tree has wholly recovered, and the denuded part is again covered with new and healthy bark. The tree, in all respects, presents a healthy appearance. Many other trees much affected with blight were coated heavily with the sulphur composition and have evinced marked signs of improvement. It is intended to continue these experiments on a larger scale, until sufficiently numerous and well-established facts attest the best mode of treatment.
The Department grounds consist of a heavy, compact, partially underdrained soil, lying low; they are, therefore, unfavorable for the highest development of pear tree culture. It has been only by persistent effort that the fruit trees on the Department grounds have been brought to their present highly improved state.