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GARDENING FOR THE WEEK

Our contributor, a well-known gardener, will be glad to answer question*, which uust be received not later than Tuesday of each week. —A Hardy Fernery.—■ A hardy fernery is one of the. most delightful features a man can have in hk garden, but we do not often And a garden provided with one, even though there is a shady nook on tho spot which could be turned into a fern paradise with very little trouble and expense. It is useless attempting a hardy fernery in an unsuitable spot. Ferns are essentially shade lovers, and fihade thoy must havo if they are to be grown successfully; but if one has not a portion of shady wood, a snug corner where partial or complete t-hade is afforded by wall, building, or trees will ho suitable, lor tho cultivation of ferns. A well-stocked fernery reveals at a glance ■what abundant varieties exist in liardy feins alone. Not only have we our lovely New Zealand hardy kind* in numbers, but we can grow British ferns to perfection, also those from Europe, and Ninth America, which is particularly rich in ferns. Japan and China, have likewise contributed to our outdoor kinds. Many suitable nooks could bo diverted from what mav be now a useless and pethaps an unsightly corner into a thing of beauty and of great interest. Xot onlv have hardy ferns apparently been neglected of late years, but hidf-hardy and greenhouse ferns al-o. It would be indeed refreshing to see at our shows some of tho fine collections that used to he stated by some of' our local enthusiasts. Although this is wandering somewhat from tho hardy fern subject," still many strong varieties were shown anions; the collections referred to. When I t-pr-ak of hardy ferns I do not wish it to he understood that bremifie these beautiful fern are classed as hardy they will crow under any conditions. This is not stu There are a few points that must W eon-vubved before succeed can be obt.ninod—th-ib is. shade, shelter, moisture, and suitable materia! for then] to grow in. Mono of these difrHiH-ico are by any means linsurmonr.tahlo. especially where a little enthusiasm k instilled into the sulvect. —The Po-e Garden.— Our rose sh->w is over once again, and I think, considering the terrible weather .-onditionr, with which exhibitors, and tho Horticultural Society have had to contend (though fortunately, it cleared for show day), the society are to lie congratulated upon the very fine display of the qrceu () f Uower.-. Though perhaps, not quite i;o many of the new varieties were brought forward as I should have liked to see. a good percentage of them were rv:.re.-ented. and sou;: 1 of these stood at the head—notably Mrs .!. IT. Welsh in the h.p. cla«s. and Mrs Herbert Stevens in tho tea section. Although theso are not n ivelrie.s. they are comparatively now, and lioth these were grown bv Sir ft. Nichol, who deserves ci edit for the fine lot he staged for tho champion collection. It is not necessary for me to go into details concerning the different exhibits, a.; this has already been done in the Press reports upon the show. Mr Xichol ami Mr Solomon deserve the thanks (if the eoinmiinitv for their fine di—plavs. It is no small s-.rriH.ec or task to get' such exh'hits together. Whilst T am on the io:o. let m<> advise prospective to--. growers to go arntuid to the various nitrsenmen and see the plains growing hefoi-,? making a select'on for the coming planting season. To see ihem growing end in bloom is a great guide to beginners, and likely to rinve more satrifaeiory than r!;i<hng or selecting kinds from c-atrlognvt-. until one knows the kinds required. One need not fear a cold reception, as rno-t growers aro only too pleased to show off their pel. blooms and to as.-ist people in making selections. There ere a few points worthy j of consideration, and t::n' is the removal of all decayed llowers before seeds form. as this is- a drag upon the plant. After the firs;, flush of bloom givs the- plants ;i few good waterings with liquid manure cuce in- fivic«* a week to strengthen (hem for their second ilu.-l: of bloom. —fin ysauthem are". — TJaut-! r-hould ii''i\- 1•■ sulliciVntly fo> - ward to require tivir final or flowering po;- though "no date .an lie fixed i\K» thiwork. as much depend- on whether the. plants leipiii'- theic tloweriug no is or not. It would be doing them more harm then good to pot them before- they had filled their small pots with roots. A good malerial to use consists of good, sound turf loam, chopped or broken up about trie si/.o of nuts, four parts.; leaf mould, one part; clean, sharp sand, on<i part; old lime rubbish, half ,-.. part; bone meal, an BL> pot full to a harrow load of .-oil : ami a 6m pot full of j_-as coal soot, ail well mixed a few days beioie using. Pottin-': Firstly, havo the pots quite clean ; then place a good flat crock or oyster shell over the, hole; upon this a few large crocks, then an inch of smaller c ro< ks about the size of mite and some half-inch hones. liver this placv a few pieces of turfy lumps, then a few handfuls of tin: mixture. Upon, this place the ball of the plant, with tlw loose roots carefully spread out. Then till in with the hand, a. little at a. time, and rani nice and tiriu. The ball of the plant should now be. 2J,in from th-e rim. Add more material, and ram it well until it is l£in from the rim, which should 1>; about tho correct tiling to till up to. There is an important point to h;s considered when potting, and that is never to ram th<s eoil too firm if tiie loam is at. all of a heavy nature, or it will atfoct the drainage. On the other hand, if the sod is of ix fiee. o]>oti, and sandy nature, it is almost impossible to ro.ni the soil too firmly. If the soil is in a nie-o moi.-t condition tho plants will not require watering for a day or two, and for a week ov so care must be taken not to giv too much water until the roots are running freely into the fresh soil. Xever allow chrysanthemums to become dry at the roots. —Answers.— "Window Box."—You wish to know if you could with a fair amount of success grow some plants in a good-sized windowbox, and what kind of flowers should you use.—lt is quite possible for you to have quite a nice little display of flowers >n such a position. Window gardening was carried on very extensively in the Ukl Land when I was young. In arranging a window-box it is well to consider tho

aspect in which it is to stand. For instance, in exposed situations where wind ' has full play, nothing but tint ve/y hardiest plants would survive. On the other hand, iu situation*! which are well sheltered and at the same time command plenty of light and fresh air. quite a nice collection may he ohosen. Tom Thumb Nasturtium, with an edging of blue lobelia and a line of marguerites behind them are both showy and cheap. With such plants it is advisablo to plant crocus, narcissus, hyacinths, and tulips for a spring display. It is rather lute in the soason to advise planting more permanent plants, though ivy and pink geraniums for an edging, and zonal geraniums and pslngnni>nn= for a background are very effectual. Mother o' millions (Saxafraga Herrnentosa) make a pretty edging, with red geranium next, and white fuchsia at the hack These would also make a nice show this season, providing nice plants in pots are used. To prepare tho box let it he strong and 9in or lOin deep and 2ft in width. Two or three holes should be bored in the bottom for drainage. The material to fill the box should consist of 2in of broken bricks the size of nuts. Over this place a little lumpy material, such as the sittings of tho following mixture: —Turfy loam, three parts; old manure, one part ; wood ashes, half a part; sand, one part. All well mixed; fill the box within lin of the rim, and make firm.—H.C.

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GARDENING FOR THE WEEK, Issue 15685, 26 December 1914

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1,400

GARDENING FOR THE WEEK Issue 15685, 26 December 1914

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