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 person carrying some orange trees from China to the Prince of Wales' Island, when they had many hundred fruit on them, expected a good crop the next year, but was utterly disappointed: they produced but few. A Chinese, settled in in the island, told him if he would have his trees bear, he must treat them as they were accustomed to in China; and he described the following process for providing manure:
" A cistern, so lined and covered as to be air-tight, is half-filled with animal matter; and to prevent bursting from the generation of air, a valve is fixed which gives way with some difficulty, and lets no more gas escape than is necessary: the longer the manure is kept the better, till four years, when it is in perfection; it is taken out in the consistence nearly of jelly, and a small portion buried at the root of every orange treethe result being an uncommonly great yield." A person hearing of the above mot, and wishing to abridge the term of the preparation, thought that boiling animals to a jelly might have a similar if not so strong an effect. Accordingly, he boiled several puppies, and applied the jelly to the roots of a sterile fig-tree: the benefit was very great - the tree from that time for several years bearing in profusion Hints of this kind are well worth preserving, for though a farmer may neither have the apparatus of the Chinese, nor puppies enough to become an object of attention, yet the reduction of manure to a mucilaginous state ought perhaps to be carried further than it is.