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.
Newly planted Evergreens suffer more from the sun-scorching, to which they are usually subjected the first season, than from all other disadvantages. A valuable specimen is hastily planted out, fresh from the nursery, where it has been grown in compact lines, each row shielding its neighbor, frequently from a different climate, and it is expected to flourish and withstand the usual exigencies of the seasons. It has no fibrous roots to infuse vigor, and as the warm weather stimulates the latent vital organism of the plant into a sort of spasmodic vegetable action, we see feeble and delicate shoots springing from the buds which, growing slenderly and rapidly, immediately afterwards wither and dry up. Defoliation soon ensues, and by midsummer, the sanguine planter finds his hopes of possessing a beautiful Evergreen blasted, and, in its stead, he has only a handful of unsightly brushwood sticking where his cherished specimen once stood. The nurseryman who had properly nurtured and educated the plant, whilst it was under his care, is frequently blamed for its ultimate failure, and tree culture gets a back-set from which it rarely recovers, simply because a little precautionary care was not exercised in properly planting, and protecting it after it was planted.
We adopted, last season, a simple and successful mode of protecting our Evergreen-trees from the sun. Around each tree we drove, in a circle, eight stakes, and taking the long, flexible branches of the common red cedar, nailed them to the framework as high as the top of the tree. Wattling in the straggling sprays, both inside and out, made it a very dense protection. Care should be taken to make the circle sufficiently large, to allow for two years' growth of the plant, after which time the screen could be Safely removed, as it would be properly and fully established in its roots. This fixture is not unsightly - in fact, the dark-brown foliage of the cedar limbs, which does not shed off, gives a mellow relief to the surrounding green, and it is thus rendered more picturesque than any other screen that can be made. Any other long-branched twigs thickly wattled in, make a good screen, and a most beautiful ornamental fixture of this kind, lasting in its character, could be made out of the twisted fibres of the long Spanish moss (Tilandsia Usneoides). The common flag of our swamps, and broom straw, would serve the purpose, when cedar boughs and moss could not be readily obtained.
The ground inside the screen can be mulched, and as the mulching is protected, and cannot be scattered, this process has not to be repeated during the season. The sun's rays from eleven until four o'clock are most injurious, and, if not already attended to, immediately screen all your Evergreen-trees from its blighting effects. Their increased growth and general luxuriance will amply repay you for the small outlay of labor required. - South Carolina Agriculturist.