NOTES FOR THE PRESENT MONTH, BY A PROFESSIONAL GARDENER. APRIL. KITCHEN GARDENING. The principal crops will now be either all sown or planted, and the encouragement of their growth the object of attention ; but, where omitted last month, Onions, Cabbages, Cauliflowers and Turnips should be sown at once, to insure success. If not done before the middle of the month, it is better to defer sowing until spring. Where Brocoli have been planted during summer months, and grown freely, rowers would find it very advantageous to cut the roots, which is easily done by inserting the spade under each plant. For instance, go down one side of the row and come back on the other. Care should be taken not to cut too close to the plant. Brocoli treated as above will resist the frost much better; for by choking its growth at this season it gets hardy as a natural consequence, and will come in ready for use much earlier than it would if not disturbed. Earth up all crops of growing Celery. Care should be taken not to allow the earth to get in between the leaves, which is done by holding up the leaves with one hand, while with the other, use a piece of slate or other flat tool to draw the earth carefully round each plant, which keeps all the leaves together until you have followed with the spade and banked up. Care should also be taken not to earth up too much at once, as it only tends to weaken the plants. By treating as directed, say once in ten days, the trouble will be well repaid by the production of fine heads of blanched Celery for either cooking purposes or desert. Make a general clearance of all ground not wanted for present sowing or planting.. Dig in in a rough state, so that it will be exposed to the action of the weather. Dig Potatoes ; gather Onions, as they ripen, and store them in a dry place. Vegetable Marrows and Pumpkins should also be gathered as they ripen, and stored in a dry, warm place for winter use. When properly stored they will keep nearly all winter, and are much prized when such vegetables are scarce. Strawberries may now be planted from the runners. Either make now plots or fill in any blanks in old beds or borders. After selecting plants for all new plantations, let all the runners that remain be trimmed off, care being taken not to cut off all the leaves, as is too often done not «<nly by amateurs but by persons calling themselves professional men. It is moat barbarous treatment, as it tends to weaken the plants and the result—the
following stunmer —is that there will be little or no fruit. Having got the runners and weeds cleared, put a good covering of well decomposed manure over the bed, and let it lie on the surface. Don’t dig it in, as is the general practice. In this way it nourishes the plant at the root and mulches the ground in summer. FLOWER GARDEN. Plant Bulbs of the following kinds— Hyacinthus, Crocuses, Snowdrops, Liliums, Narcissus, Jonquils, Daffodils, and Tulips —any of the above. For window decoration, plant in pots in a good mixture of loam, rotted manure, and sand. Plunge the pots in sand, and keep them there until the bulb begins to grow, when it might be removed to where it is required to flower. To those who desire an early display of annual flowers, by a careful reservation of those self-sown which abound at this season in great numbers, and sowing again in spring, the flower garden can be kept going from early spring until late in autumn. All tender plants, such as Geraniums, Cinerarias, Cupheas, etc., that have been turned out during summer should now be brought in and housed to protect them from frost; and all herbaceous plants that have done flowering cut down, so as to give the garden a neat appearance. THE ORCHARD requires little care at this season, further than gathering the fruits as they ripen, and keeping the ground clear of weeds, but where young fruit trees have been planted last year the ground should be kept dug round them and free from weeds, as, by keeping the ground loose, it encourages the growth of wood, keeps the trees healthy and better able to resist the attacks of blight. It only too often happens that trees are planted, and that once done, they are never looked near again ; and still those to whom the trees belong wonder why their trees do not grow like their neighbors’, who cultivate them in a proper manner. A few trees properly cultivated is much better than a larger number cultivated indifferently.
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THE GARDENER., Ashburton Guardian, Volume 1, Issue 90, 22 April 1880
THE GARDENER. Ashburton Guardian, Volume 1, Issue 90, 22 April 1880
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