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here and there, one that never headed further than cabbaging, showing at once what broccoli originated in. It is also plain that the Brussels sprouts originated in the Savoy; and I am not sure that it will not prove that the turnip originated in the cabbage, or the cabbage in the turnip: one thing I am certain of, that the cabbage is to be found with both tuberous roots and bulbous roots; and the Swede turnip is to be found fibrousrooted like the cabbage, or more in the way of rape. All these observations I have often made, and I mean to watch them still more closely.
I make it a rule to have two sowings always of the Winter Broccoli, the first about the middle of April, and the second about the middle of May. I prick the plants early, get them strong, and plant them between the crops of peas, one row on each side of a row of peas, which shades them for a time, and as the peas are pulled away from them, the ground is forked, &c. They soon get strength, and grow away.
I always take care to have all ground trenched well in winter for Peas, and well manured, except for the first crop, which I find comes in quicker by being sown on the ground whilst it is rather poor. Stopping them just as they begin to come into bloom causes them to set all together and quickly. I take care to have the second crop to follow immediately. I have grown almost every sort of peas
that I ever heard of up
to the present time; and I find that for the first crop there is no kind better than the Warwick, which I sow at the bottom of sloping banks the first week in December; and find that by so doing they are just ready to come through the ground about Christmas, about the time frost sets in. If they make their appearance above ground, and the frost does come, I take care to cover them with dry dusty soil of any kind, which I always have in readiness : it keeps them healthy, and free from canker and shanking off. For succession I sow the Frame pea, and a few Charlton; and for general summer crops the Scimitar Blue, New Green Marrow, Milford's Marrow, which is a fine pea, and Knight's Tall Marrow, the best-flavoured and most useful of all peas. All the last-mentioned sorts cannot have the ground too well trenched, manured, and prepared ; particularly Knight's tall marrow, which will not do on poor ground. I have had them 16 ft. high, kept up with poles and ropes. Sow or plant the seed 3 in. apart. They always grow up very weak, and continue so for some time; but as the season advances they gain strength wonderfully, and branch out, if stopped when 2 ft. high. If you take care to stop them again when about 4 or 5 feet high, and once or twice afterwards, according to their strength, you will cause them to be from 3 ft. to 4 ft. in thickness in the row. If they show bloom before I am likely to
want them, I pick all off for a time. I reckon on them to serve the table every day all through the driest and hottest part of the summer, from July to September; and I have had most wonderful
crops from them, when treated in the above manner. I have never heard a single person say but that they were the best-flavoured of all peas. It is of no use to think of having a fine lasting crop of peas, if there is not a thoroughly good preparation made for them. If a good preparation be made for them, and the ground fresh, that pest the mildew will not trouble much, for it is nothing but drought and poverty that causes the mildew in late crops.
Beans, every practical man knows, like a good holding loam, and can be much forwarded, as well as peas, by being sown in pans, in frames, vineries, peach-houses, &c., and then planted out in a warm border or on the sides of ridges or sloping banks. The best early bean I am acquainted with is the Mazagan, to be succeeded by the Wonder Long Pod and Windsor Broad Bean. Cutting off every alternate row, just as they are coming into bloom, which rows should not be planted nearer than 3 ft. apart at first, makes a very great improvement in the crop left; and those that are cut down break out again and make a good successional crop. The black dolphin is the worst enemy
I know of amongst beans, and attacks them about the time they come into bloom. It is easily got rid of with a garden engine and soap-suds, which will clear every living one off; but, if not well attended to, oftentimes the crop is much injured by this pest.
The Onion is one of the most wholesome and useful of all vegetables. It also requires the ground to be well trenched, laid in rough ridges all the winter, and forked and tumbled over as roughly as possible every frosty morning with a strong fork or pick, which sweetens it and kills all vermin. Sow in drills 1 ft. apart, and not until the ground is thoroughly pulverised; choosing a fine day to level down, any time between the lst and 20th of March; and even then, if your ground is not in thoroughly good condition, defer it for another week: but you need not sow them on Valentine's day, because you heard your grandfather say that he had always done so, let the wind blow whichever way it might. No better sorts of onions do I know of for general purposes throughout the year, than the Deptford, Reading, New White Globe, and Old Brown Globe, or James's keeping. The Two-bladed is a beautiful onion for putting in the earliest in the spring ; but it is not much known except in the London market-gardens. The Silver-skinned is the best for pickling. Sow the seeds in the drills with manure, charcoaldust, bone-dust, or well-pulverised night-soil, which are all fine manures for growing crops of onions. Take care to run the
Dutch hoe up between the drills as soon as the onions can be seen; and the small hand goose-necked hoes, one in each hand, as soon as the whip (as it is termed in a market-garden) is clear out of the ground. Every practical man must know that an onion comes out of the ground doubled like a whip and handle. A good small-hoer, in the neighbourhood of London, is certain of finding plenty of employment, and, as the work is let by measurement, he has the opportunity of earning high wages; but it is astonishing what mischief a bad workman makes amongst crops by muddling and trampling about. I have known five pounds an acre given for hoeing the onions during the season, that is, for three times; but it is now done for much less, and I have seen many men attempt to hoe with a hoe in each hand, that could never learn to use it properly with one.
The Carrot is a very useful vegetable, and much sought for in every family almost every day in the year, and is a very useful hearty food for cattle. I am only surprised that more are not grown by farmers for the cattle.
The ground about this neighbourhood is the finest for carrot-growing I ever met with, a beautiful sandy loam; and I have this season grown a greater weight of the straightest well-coloured carrots, than ever I saw in Surrey, Kent, Essex, or Middlesex. I have sometimes talked to the farmers in this neighbourhood about growing carrots, and the answer I have always got is, that they are sure they would never answer hereabouts; but I could never discover that any had tried it. They crop with so and so during the spring, because their grandfather had done it before them, fifty years ago, and then find out in some way when it is harvest time; but complain wonderfully because the land has only brought from fifteen to twenty-five bushels per acre.
The very same land, in my humble opinion, under the present improved method of cultivation in some neighbourhoods that I ħave seen, would yield double the above quantity. To grow carrots they must not scuffle over the land as they now do, or they will not get them much longer than my thumb; but they must let the subsoil plough go to work; when for several seasons the crops that followed would be much benefited by the change, and by the soil being broken deeper than it ever had been before. I cannot understand why some of the men do not try to break their ground deeper. When in conversation with any of them about it, they always acknowledge it would be better for every thing; but still they have not the resolution to put it into force on ever so small a scale. The only excuse I ever heard is, that the rents, rates, &c., are so high they cannot manage it; and my argument is, that that would be the way to get something to pay them with. The best sort of carrot for colour, length, and general crop is the Surrey; and
the Horn for framing and all early purposes. Never sow them till the latter end of March or beginning of April, for a general crop, and sow in drills 1 ft. apart; and hoe in the same sort of way as for the onions, taking them in time as soon above ground.
Parsneps will grow good with the above management, but like a richer and heavier soil, and should be sown in drills.
Spinach I always sow in drills the same distance, making a good preparation, and sowing the principal winter crop about the 12th of August; indeed, I sow every thing in drills.
Lettuce all the summer months I sow in drills, and thin and hoe out, as they are so apt to get checked when planted out in hot weather, and to run to seed; but sowing in drills, with constant hoeing, keeps them growing healthily.
I think I shall not dwell longer at present on kitchengardening, but give you an occasional letter on any subject that I may hereafter consider useful. To sum up all in a few words, trench the ground and throw it into rough ridges immediately after any crop is done with; choose good and proper seasons for every crop, that is, the right season for putting it into the ground. Hoe and fork the ground at every opportunity; but never get trampling on it when in a very wet state, or it will soon become soured and unkind. By following the above method you will never be troubled much with slugs, snails, or any other sort of vermin, but have all vegetables sweet, clean, and wholesome.
Bicton Gardens, Nov. 30. 1842.
[In answer to several enquirers, we beg to state that Mr. Barnes's mode of pine-growing will be given in the December or January Number, we are not certain which. A gardener, who writes to us on this subject, says that he was at Bicton on the 8th of September, and saw queen piné-apples which numbered sixteen pips in depth!! He fully corroborates all Mr. Cruickshank says (p. 547.) as to the vigour of the greenhouse and hothouse plants; and he mentions a musa sucker, which had grown 33 ft. high between January and June last.]
Art. IV. Notice of a Visit to Bicton Gardens in August 1843, with
Remarks on the Culture practised there, and on the State of some of the Plants. By James CRUICKSHANK, Gardener to the Right
Honourable the Earl of Lonsdale, at Lowther Castle. Through the kind permission of my present employer, the Earl of Lonsdale, I have lately visited Bicton Gardens, so fully
described by yourself last season (see our Vol. for 1842, p. 552.), and by the original but straightforward letters of Mr. Barnes, the gardener there.
I must confess his description of the plants, and his mode of treating them, seemed to some of us in the North not a little marvellous; or, at least, we put them down, as we do some of the advertisements of dahlias, as not to be depended on: but, having seen the gardens and plants at Bicton, I am bound to state, in justice to Mr. Barnes, that I never was so surprised and pleased in my life. There are not many places that a gardener can visit but what he may find fault with, or have reason to do so on careful examination ; but I must say I carefully inspected the gardens at Bicton, and found every department in the highest state of cultivation, both as regards the crops, and the keeping and general management of the
gardens and plants, which are such, as, in my humble opinion, do Mr. Barnes great credit.
The plants have been so fully described by yourself, and Mr. Barnes in his series of letters, that it would be useless for me to attempt a description; but I cannot avoid mentioning some of the most extraordinary specimens that I have ever seen, viz. Lechenaúltia formòsa and L. bíloba, the ericas in general, and Erica Massoni such a splendid specimen that I do not think there is the like of it in England, or in the United Kingdom.
If any gardener should have the least doubt of what I have stated, I would advise him to visit Bicton and judge for himself. I am sure Mr. Barnes will be very glad to show a brother gardener any thing there is to be seen there.
Lowther Castle Gardens, Aug. 19. 1843.
ART. V. On Laying out and Planting the Lawn, Shrubbery, and
Flower-Garden. By the CONDUCTOR.
(Continued from p. 499.)
The designs figs. 118. and 119. are flower-gardens characterised by curvilineal walks ; and the reason of this is, that these designs are adapted for a surface either raised in the middle and falling towards the sides, or raised at the sides and falling to the centre.
Hitherto the designs that we have given in this article have been for surfaces comparatively flat and level ; but the two now before us are calculated for hilly ground or hollows. The reason why curvilineal walks are adapted for hilly ground is, that all sloping surfaces are most easily ascended or descended in directions oblique to their line of slope. When a slope is perfectly regular, like an inclined plane or the glacis of a fortification, the oblique walk by which it is to be traversed may be a straight line, but in every other case curvilineal lines will be found preferable, because less fatiguing, and consequently more agreeable to walk on.