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.
Mr. Editor : - Now that some attention is being paid to the subject of good hedge plants, I would beg to suggest for trial by those experimenting, a native, which seems to have all the qualities of a good hedge plant, namely: *"Zanthoxylum Americana" (prickly ash.) This plant has quite a shrubby habit and cattle do not browse on it, at least so far as I bare observed, nor do I think it throws up any suckers. What do those say who have observed its habits in different localities? G. - Galt, Canada West, August 11, 1865.
A good deciduous hedge is still a desideratum. The Osage orange and Honey locust form serviceable hedges when properly attended to; but herein lies the difficulty, - they grow so luxuriantly that at least two trimmings are required during summer to keep them in proper order; and as few can afford the necessary time during that busy period, the consequence is that few good hedges are seen, and even those that have succeeded in rearing a good fence are severely taxed in keeping it as such. What we require is a plant that, like the English hawthorn, can be managed by one yearly trimming, and that to be done during winter when there usually is more leisure to attend to such operations. Such a plant is the Viburnum lentago, or sheep berry. Naturally a plant of compact habit of growth, but little pruning will be necessary, and its foliage is peculiarly suitable for the purpose of a hedge. Compared with Osage orange or Honey locust its growth is slow, but it grows into a hedge, and will not require to be headed down for two or three years, as these strong growing plants must be in order to induce side shoots, and will, under good treatment, form a hedge 5 feet high as quickly as those of more luxuriant growth, since the upright growth of the latter is in a measure lost for a year or two.
The flower of this Viburnum is much like the hawthorn both in appearance and fragrance, and altogether it is one of the most desirable plants for a shrubbery, although seldom planted. Being a native shrub it is seldom grown in nurseries to any extent, but as it seeds freely there need be no difficulty in raising it in quantities. I hope to see it become a favorite hedge plant. [ Probably the Licustrtim Vulgare is here meant. - Ed. ]
I think that the Celtis occidental or Nettle tree would also be a good plant for hedges.
Mr. Editor: - This poor fruit season may perhaps be turned to excellent account by noticing and recording for future use the sorts of fruit that bear best and hence are most reliable. I shall speak especially with reference to the apple only, as being in its varieties the only well established fruit among us. But the pear this season is bearing here very much better than the apple, and I feel the utmost assurance that with right management the West will yet abound with that princely fruit. In my very limited range this season I have noticed fine crops on the Maiden's Blush, Carolina June, Trenton Early, considered synonymous with old English Codlin, Carthouse or Little Roraanite, while the Wineeap, Milam, Jannet, Yellow Bollflower, Seek-no-further (Westfield), English Golden Russet, Rambo, and others have partial crops. And yet this season on the whole must be considered, to some extent, exceptional as a test to the permanent bearing qualities of different varieties, for at least two of our best bearers ordinarily, the Limbertwig and Red Lady-finger, are almost totally barren so far as I have noticed them T. McWhorton, of Mercer Co., an extensive orehardist writes that among his best bearers are Red Astracan, Maiden's Blush, Sweet Pine, Duchess of Oldenburg, Keswick Codlin, Jersey Sweet, - nearly every one like oar own list above early varieties.
Among those bearing reasonably well he names Peck's Pleasant, Rambo, Summer Pearmain, Early Harvest, Jonathan, Carolina June, Sops of Wine, Golden Sweet, Automn Strawberry, Lowell, Peach Pond Sweet, Summer Sweet Paradise, Cooper's Early White, Milam Domine, Hurlbut, Jannet. Most of these are also summer or fall varieties, of which, by the way, the lists afford a far greater number that prove satisfactory here at the West, than of winter fruit.
Mr. McWhorton also gives a description of an early apple received by him from Knox Co., in this State, which from its very long stem he calls Early Long Stem. "Fruit under medium, oblong-conical, slightly ribbed; cavity wide, acuminate, stem over two inches long; basin shallow, much plaited, color green or olive green with whitish specks; flesh very fine, juicy, rich sub-acid,. first rate: I believe as good an early apple as I ever tasted. Season, August 1st. Have heard it is productive, but have had only some half dozen specimens".
Bloomington, III., August, 1859. Truly, F. K. PHOENIX