Harper's New Monthly Magazine, 11 (1885–86), 877–84.
The Home Acre. III.—The Garden [3/8]
E P Roe
Horticulture, Chemistry, Putrefaction, Natural Economy, Nutrition, Botany, Temperance, Gender, Taxonomy, Expertise, Breeding, Amusement, Experiment, Monographs, Popularization, Climatology
Norman J Colman , Prosper J A Berckmans , Elbert S Carman , Andrew S Fuller
Urges caution in applying manure to soil, suggesting that 'No matter how abundantly the ground may be enriched at first, time and chemical action are required to transmute the fertilizers into the best forms of plant food', and compares soil to a 'nervous, excitable person [who] should let stimulants alone, and take good, solid, blood-making food' (878). In considering 'that chef-d'œuvre of nature', the vine, insists that 'we will refrain from a temperance lecture', but notes nevertheless that the 'vine is like a woman, the inspiration of the best and the worst' (879–80). Observes that 'about two thousand known and named varieties of grapes have been and are being grown in Europe, and all these are supposed to have been developed from one species (Vitis vinifera), which originally was the wild product of nature', although 'One can scarcely suppose this possible when contemplating a cluster of Tokay or some other highly developed variety of the hot-house'. Discusses different grape varieties suitable for a garden and declares that 'as an aid to selection I will again give the verdict of some of the authorities', as well as suggesting that as 'I have over a hundred varieties in bearing I may venture to express an opinion also'. (880) Claims that 'those who wish to amuse themselves by experimenting with nature can find abundant enjoyment in not only grafting old vines, but also in raising new seedlings', but concedes that those 'whose tastes carry them to such lengths in vine culture will be sure to purchase exhaustive treatises on the subject, and will therefore give no heed to these simple practical papers'. Insists, however, that it is 'my aim to enable the business man returning from his city office, or the farmer engrossed with the care of many acres, to learn in a few moments, from time to time, just what he must do to supply his family abundantly with fruits and vegetables'. (881)
© Science in the Nineteenth-Century Periodical Project, Universities of Leeds and Sheffield, 2005-07
Printed from Science in the Nineteenth-Century Periodical: An Electronic Index, v. 3.0, hriOnline Publications <http://www.sciper.org> [accessed ]