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.
"My practice does not, I presume, differ much from that pursued by other growers. For com-post> I prefer a proportion of two bushels of vegetable mold or rotted leaves, two bushels of chopped sod, passed through a coarse sieve wide enough to allow moderate sized lumps to pass through; one bushel hotbed manure, and one of sand. The sod I use is clayey. In propagating by cuttings I find that wood of one month old will strike in many cases very readily; and when put in during the latter part of February, will be rooted in March. I use cutting-pans, about three inches deep, and a compost of two-thirds sand to one of loam, and apply bottom heat I have a bed heated by a flue passing through it, which I find very useful for this purpose. When well rooted, I pot them off into small-sized pots, and plant them out in May. In the fall I re-poti them in the compost already mentioned, and keep them in a cool house, without fire-heat, till January; unless the frost is too great, when I protect them slightly, but use no fire-heat, till last of January or February. These plants flower well The Tea, Bourbon, and China are treated in this way; the Hybrid Pereptuals, or Moss Roses, are not included, as neither these nor the Noisettes are adapted for winter flowering.
I do not prune very closely in the fall, but in May prune thoroughly, and sink the pots in the soil, and lift them in September for winter flowering, repotting them if necessary, and pruning out all dead wood. At this season, care must be taken not to break the ball much, The temperature should be kept moaerate. A dry atmosphere is very injurious and is the chief cause of failure in keeping plants in rooms. The water should always be applied at the top; where saucers are used it is only for cleanliness. Planting out secures strong plants, but is not admissable for winter blooming. I have found Hybrid Perpetual) to succeed best on their own roots* Teas and Bourbons will do well from layers. In England and the north of France, budding is generally practiced and succeeds well, but here it is quite different I have known many failures in budding, and in some cases not more than twenty-five out of a thousand have succeeded; two out of a dozen is often the proportion in our climate. Budded plants are liable to produce suckers, which have been sometimes mistaken fo young, vigorous shoots. Tea Roses require lighter soil, and flower more freely than Bengal or B Lrbons; they will also bear more heat, and should be placed in the warmest part of the house.
Roses for forcing should have as much sun and air as possible, with a moist atmosphere. I have found Roses in greenhouse?, planted in the border, with bottom heat, produce more flowers with 50 ° of heat than in other cases with 70 °, and have had better flowers when the temperature did not exceed 50° than at 65°; 65° is a good temperature for forcing. In reply to the question, 'Is manure-water good I say, yes; if applied judiciously in small portions in March".
* This is greatly at variance with our experience. They may be seen budded in the nurneries here as successfully as Peach or Apple trees, by the thousand; and many varieties bloom more freely, and produce larger flowers, when.
HaVing, in common with many others of your readers, suffered by being duped by dishonest nurserymen, (for there are quacks in every profession,) I would humbly suggest, as a partial remedy, that more attention be paid by horticulturists to describing trees as well as plants. Fruits are pretty well described, but one has often to wait for years to see the fruit, and often only doomed to disappointment then. The best hints that I have yet seen about trees is in J. J. Thomas' Fruit Culturist, which are very good as far as they go, but more is needed. I hope, therefore, that when you, or any of your correspondents, describe fruit, that you will describe the tree also. XL W. Terry's description of Beurre Van Mons Fear, in your April number, is good. I have no doubt but it would please many of your readers, as well as the writer, if you would describe a few of the best Pear trees in each number, say a page in each. Although to common observers Pear trees appear very similar, yet when minutely examined they are very different: - lst, in form or growth of tree; 2d, in color of shoots; Si, in buds; and 4th, in leave*. I need not mention the many distinctions which each gives, for you know them much better than I do.
A Lover of Good Fruit.
In connection with the description of fruits, it is important in all cases to note the characteristic habits of the trees, in growth, wood, foliage, etc. "We quite agree with our correspondent in this. We shall soon commence a series of notices of the best fruits.