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 subject selected for next meeting was. "Cuttings and their Propagation." Adjourned for two weeks.
The Society met again November 13th, Mr. Degrauw in the chair.
Mr. Mead opened the meeting by pointing out the merits of the various plants and flowers on the table. [We shall condense all this by saying that Mr. Chamberlain, of Newport, R. L, exhibited a Peach tree, a Grape vine, Strawberries in fruit, two baskets of plants, a Pineapple in fruit, all grown in moss baskets. Mr. Burgess exhibited flowers of Daphne eneorum. Mr. Messenberg exhibited a variety of cut flowers. Mr. Wakeling exhibited water-color paintings of flowers. Mr. Williamson exhibited oil paintings of fruits and flowers. Messrs. Daille-douze and Zeller exhibited seedling Carnations. Mrs. Humphries exhibited a beautiful bouquet made up loosely].
Five questions were handed to Mr. Mead, relating to the grape vine, all of which were duly answered. Mr. Mead then called on Mr. Fuller to speak on the subject of cuttings. Mr. Fuller said cuttings should be made in the fall before the wood hardens, or they will have to be soaked. Roots will form in a lower temperature than the tops. Cuttings of nearly all hardy plants should be planted in the fall. Currants are the first to lose their leaves. Currant cut-tin'*s were made on the 15th of September, and roots are now formed. In making a cutting, cut square across the base of a bud. Soil should be good and rich. Make a trench as deep as the length of the cutting; press the earth around the base; it prevents its drying up; then fill up the trench. Cut out all the eyes except the two top ones, to prevent suckers. In planting a Quince cutting, pack the cutting close at the base; success depends much upon this; leave only one eye out of the ground. Gardeners say Manetti Rose stocks do not grow well out of doors; 95 per cent. of his have grown like the sample shown. In making grape cuttings, the old-fashioned way was two to four feet long; but the best are two eyed cuttings, grown as explained at last meeting. The eyes of the Delaware are so close that we must take three eyes.
The Delaware is the hardest wood we have, and if left till spring, becomes very difficult to start. Does not care about the quantity of roots, but quality. Is not particular about all the roots; would prefer to cut them back, and cut the top to correspond. The Delaware is said not to grow well from cuttings out of doors. Mr. Brophy asked if it was not a favorite mode to grow Delaware cuttings in pots. Mr. Fuller, Yes. Mr. Dunham asked if there was any advantage in exposing the roots of the Quince in winter. Mr. Fuller, No, unless you want to freeze the borer. Mr. Dunham had tried it several years, and had four times the fruit. Mr. Mead said he looked first at the quality of roots, and then at the quantity; and then went on to explain how Currants, Mignonnette, Sweet Alyssum, Primulas, Pansies, etc., could be grown from cuttings. He then called on Mr. Chamberlain to explain how he prepared his moss baskets. Mr. Chamberlain replied that the baskets were real things, and not shams, as any body could see. Prepares his baskets of moss, sand, charcoal, and bone dust, chiefly bone dust. The Pineapple had been growing about eighteen months. Mr. Mead asked if he put the plants directly in the baskets. Mr. Chamberlain said, No; first root them in soil.
He thought they would last three or four years; had tried them two years. The composition is only add d once, but liquid manure is used twice a week. Mr. Howe said he had never seen a finer specimen of Pine either in Europe or the West Indies. Mr. Bridgeman said that placing cuttings near the edge of a pot, is a rule proved by every theory of cultivation. Mr. Brophy asked how to propagate the Buffalo Berry. Mr. Bridgeman advised him to layer it.
It was concluded to continue the subject at the next meeting, and the Society adjourned.
The Society met again on Tuesday, November 27th, Mr. Pardee in the chair. Mr. Mead said it was gratifying to see so many present, etc. [We omit again with saying that Mr. Burgess exhibited Daphne oneorum, Mrs. Humphries a beautiful basket of flowers, Mr. Messenberg a collection of cut flowers, and Mr. Quin Easter Beurre pears. There were also photographs of Mr. Chamberlain's baskets exhibited at last meeting. Mr. Barnard exhibited shell marl from New Paltz Landing.] Being called upon, Mr. Barnard said that shell marl is found in nearly every county in the state (N. Y.). Farmers have tried it and are satisfied. It is the remains of shell fish; when first taken out is compacted in masses. This specimen was found in a bed from which three or four feet of muck had been taken; then solid shell marl twelve to fifteen feet deep. The bed is from a third to half an acre, and is now a beautiful pond of fresh water, surrounded by solid rock. Sowed half a meadow with marl; it produced three times as much hay as the other half, manured in the usual way. He thought it would do for Long Island soils. He related other instances of remarkable results. Marl can be found almost every where above the Highlands. Used it on his vines, and ripened his fruit before his neighbors.
Will send a barrel to any one to try. Forty bushels to the acre will carry a piece of land five years, with rotation of crops.
Mr. Brophy had used this marl, and spoke very favorably of it. He had used it principally on roses and grape vines.
Mr. Pardee called attention to a book of preserved leaves and flowers, gathered from all parts of the world: thought it a happy idea of preserving mementoes of each place one visits.
The regular subject for discussion then came up, and Mr. Fuller, at the request of Mr. Pardee reviewed his remarks at the last meeting on making cuttings. Thought cuttings of hardy plants should be made in the fall; if the wood gets hard, it must be soaked. Some evergreens grow readily from cuttings; take young wood in the summer, and put it in a hot-bed. Arbor vitae he would put in a cold frame, in nearly pure sand; whitewash the glass, and keep the ground from freezing, they will root by spring. Some will root in open ground, if shaded. Thought the Buffalo Berry could be propagated. Mr. Pardee asked now fruit trees were grown from cuttings. Mr. Fuller replied that Plums were best propagated with a mallet-shoot Had grown Pear cuttings, and had them form fair trees the first year. Had grown some kinds of fruit trees in Wisconsin that he could not grow here. In Georgia Peach cuttings will grow if stuck in slits made in a long shoot, but not in Brooklyn. The soil of Georgia is warm, something like a hot-bed. Mr. Pardee thought it was warm enough there now. Mr. Fuller said that all deciduous plants must be layered in the fall or early in the spring. Layers from hardy plants should be made when the plants are dormant.