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.
The late S. W.Cole, who strongly recommended autumnal pruning for fruit trees, says, " Thirty-two years ago, in September, we cut a very large branch from an apple tree, on account of an injury by a gale. The tree was old, and It has never healed over, but it is now sound, and almost as hard as horn, and the tree perfectly bard around it. A few years before and after, large limbs were cut from the same tree in spring; and where they were cut off the tree has rotted, so that a quart measure may be put in the cavity." - Alb. Cultivator.
The Kansas State Horticultural Society has been discussing pruning, and it is asserted that the best success was from low-headed trees little pruned; in fact this is said to be proved by the very lowest orchards. Mr. Grubb, of Brown county, who has a large orchard, seventeen years old, is decidedly in favor of very low-headed trees, and he prunes none except with thumb and finger; and the best lesson he said he ever got on pruning was from the late Reuben Ragan of Indiana, who said when he found that pruning was coming into his mind, the very first thing he should do was to throw his knife into the well.
The horticultural editor of the Country Gentleman, says that newly set maples, " should be severely cut back, only in case the roots have been roughly handled and cut off. It is. better to secure the roots as perfectly as possible, and to out back moderately, and always do it before the buds swell".
If gardeners would consult the spade as well as pruning knife, they would avoid disasters. To prune skilfully, a vine planted unskilfully, is like richly furnishing a house built on sand; the foundations give way, and the decorations are crushed in the general ruin. So far as vines are concerned,it would be better to leave them unpruned than to plant thorn in earth they cannot feed upon, or in places where their roots gangrene at the extremities. The vine requires a strong, dry, warm soil, and people plant it in a light, wet, or odd border. How can the knife make such vines thrive.
Fine specimens, and an excellent fruit for most localities in the South and West, but has not, thus far, succeeded well at the North.
[Came in just at the right moment to help us out of the fire, for which please accept our thanks. Is it not preposterous that the Nickajack (or any other apple) should have such a "string" of synonyms? We hope somebody will respond to Mr. Downing's queries. - Ed].
From M. Linden, Brussels. This beautiful new-variegated fern was awarded a first-class certificate of merit. It is a dwarfish plant, with the habit and appearance of Pteris aspericaulis, of which it is a variegated variety. The fronds are about a couple of feet in length, pedately pinnate-pinnatifid, i. e.t pinnate, with the lowest pinnae bipartite, the pinnae and branches being pinnatifidly divided; the stipites are roughish dull purplish, the rachides and costae purplish red, the latter bearing purplish-red spines on their upper side at the base of the segments. The fronds are of a deep green, the purplish-red rachides bordered on each side with a broad band of greyish-white; the young fronds are deep red. The colors are very striking and effective, and render this a most important addition to the fern family, among which variegated forms are rare. It was stated by M. Linden to have been introduced from Malacca.