International Correspondence Schools.

Peach culture: plum culture; grape culture; strawberries; raspberries ... online

. (page 8 of 35)
Online LibraryInternational Correspondence SchoolsPeach culture: plum culture; grape culture; strawberries; raspberries ... → online text (page 8 of 35)
Font size
QR-code for this ebook


for the production of prunes is the Agen, which belongs to the
domestica species. There are many strains of this variety,
all of which are excellent for home orchard or for commercial
purposes. The trees of the variety bear regularly and heavily.
The fruit hangs well on the tree, is rich in sugar and solids,
and is very good for preserving. The defect of the fruit is
lack of size.

16. The name Apple is applied to a hybrid variety of
plvrnis. The trees of this variety are robust growers. The
fruit is large and has firm, compact, red flesh. It has excel-
lent keeping qualities, but is of a peculiar flavor, which makes
it inferior for dessert or culinary use.

17. The Archduke is a well-knowTi variety of the domes-
tica species. The trees of this variety are medium growers.



Digitized by



Google



§ 12 PLUM CULTURE 9

The fruit is a rich, dark-purple color. It keeps and ships well
and is suitable for both home and market use. Fruit of this
variety is illustrated in Fig. 3.

18, The Arctic is a variety of the domestica species.
The trees of this variety are small but hardy and productive.
The fruit is blue in color and medium in size. It ripens about
mid-season.



Fig. 3

19. One of the best of the plums is the Bavay, which is a
variety of the domestica species. This variety has been devel-
oped from the Green Gage variety, which will be described
later. The trees of this variety are of medium size and are
vigorous growers. The fruit ripens late and keeps well. It is
excellent for dessert and is also good for canning. It is good
in flavor, although in this respect it is not quite equal to the
Green Gage.

20. The Bradshaw is a variety of the domestica species.
The trees of this variety are hardy, productive, and regular



Digitized by



Google



10 PLUM CULTURE §12

bearers. The fruit ripens in the peach season, which is a fault
of the variety, because at this time there is not the demand
for plums that there is at other seasons. However, the fruit
is moderate in flavor and ships well.

21, The Burbank plimi is a variety of the triflora species.
The trees of the variety are vigorous in growth but the wood
is somewhat brittle. The fruit is red in color and handsome.
It keeps and ships better than Abundance and ripens 1 week
later.

22. A hybrid variety of the native plums is knowTi as the
Compass. This variety has been extensively advertised to be



Fig. 4

of commercial vahic for the Northwest. However, the fruit
is small and of poor quality, and the variety is of no value unless
it can be growTi in regions where better varieties will not live.

23. The Crittenden is a variety of the insititia species
and an offspring of the Damson variety. The variety is some-
times called the Cluster Damson and sometimes the Farleigh.
It ranks high among the plums produced in England but is
not a great favorite in America. Trees of this variety are of
medium size and productive. The fruit, which is illustrated
in Fig. 4, is of medium size and slightly necked. It is purplish
black in color and is covered with a thick bloom. The flesh
is greenish yellow, firm, medium juicy, and tender.



Digitized by



Google



§ 12 PLUM CULTURE 11

24. The Damson is one of the oldest and best varieties
of the insititia species. The name of this variety is a corruption
of the name Damascus, near which city the variety is said to
have originated. The Damson variety shows great adaptability
to various soils and climates. In hardiness, vigor of tree, and
productiveness it is scarcely surpassed by any variety. The
fruit is medium in size, oval, and usually black. There are a
ntunber of varieties of insititia that are offspring of the Dam-
son variety but have been propagated under different names.
These varieties are often grouped together and are spoken



Fig. 5

of as the Damson group. Many of these varieties excel the
original Damson in quality of fruit.

25. The Blamond is one of the varieties of the domestica
species. Trees of this variety are vigorous, hardy, and pro-
ductive. The fruit, which is illustrated in Fig. 5, varies in
color from a reddish piuple to a purplish black. It is large,
well formed, and ships well, but the flesh is coarse and the
flavor poor, and for these reasons it is rather disappointing for
market fruit.

249—8



Digitized by



Google



12 PLUM CULTURE § 12

26, The French is a variety of the insititia species and
is an offspring of the Damson variety. It is often called the



Pig. 6



French Damson. The trees of this variety are large, hardy, and
bear abundantly and annually. The fruit, which is illustrated
in Fig. 6, is larger than that of any other variety that has
developed from the Damson. In color the fruit is dull black



Fig. 7



and is covered with a thick bloom. The flesh is greenish in
color and is sweet and juicy.



Digitized by



Google



§ 12 PLUM CULTURE 13

27, Frogmore is a variety of the insititia species and one
of the best of the offspring of the Damson variety. The trees
are small and have thorny branches. They are rotmd topped,
hardy, and very productive. The fruit, which is illustrated in
Fig. 7, is clingstone; it is medium in size, and purplish black in
color, overspread with a thick bloom. The flesh is of a golden
color. It is tender, sweet, and juicy.

28. The German, or German Prune, a variety of the
domestica species, is one of the oldest plimis under cultiva-



PlG. 8

tion. There are several strains of the variety. The trees are
mediimi to large in size. The fruit, which is illustrated in
Fig. 8, is purplish black in color and has a yellowish-green flesh;
it ripens late in the season.

29, The Golden Drop is a variety of the domestica
species. It is one of the best of the yellow plimis, but is fit only
for the home garden.

30. The Grand Duke is a variety of the domestica species.
Trees of this variety are rather late in coming into bearing,



Digitized by



Google



14 PLUM CULTURE § 12

but the fniit, which is illustrated in Fig. 9, is large and hangs
to the tree well. In color, it is dark reddish purple or purplish
black and overspread with a thick bloom. The plum has a fairly-
good flavor and is especially good for canning. It ships well.

31. The Green Gage, which is also known as the Reine
Claude, has been for many years the standard variety of the
domestica species and deserves a place in every orchard where



Pig. 9

the domestica can be grown. A large number of varieties of
excellent quality liave been developed in America from the
Reine Claude. The trees of the variety are of meditmi size
and productive, but grow very poorly in the ntu'sery and are
likely to sun scald. The fruit is of good size, yellowish green
in color, and unexcelled in quality.

32. The Gueli is a variety of the domestica species. The

trees come into bearing early and bear abimdantly, and the



Digitized by



Google



§ 12 PLUM CULTURE 15

fruit ships well. Because of these facts the variety is a stand-
ard, although the fruit is of poor quality. The fruit, which is
illustrated in Fig. 10, is medium in size and in color is a dark-
purplish black overspread with a thick bloom.

33. The Hawkeye, which is a variety of the Americana
species, seems to be well adapted to cold climates. The trees
are of mediimi size and hardy, and they bear annually and



Fig. 10

abundantly. The fruit is above average in size and dark red
in color. The pltun is sweet, has a sour skin, and is of good
quality but seems to be easily infected with brown rot.

34. The Italian Prune, which is one of the most widely-
grown varieties of the domestica species, is the leading plimi
grown in the Pacific Northwest. The trees of this variety are
large, hardy, productive, and regular bearers, but are capricious
as to soil and climate, and seem to be susceptible to disease.
The fruit, which is illustrated in Fig. 11, is large, purple in color,
attractive, and of fine flavor. It ships well.

35. The Lombard, which is one of the most easily growTi
varieties of the domestica species, is now grown rather



Digitized by



Google



16 PLUM CULTURE § 12

extensively in some states for canning purposes. The trees are
hardy, productive, and regtdar bearers, and young trees are
much used as stocks on which to graft weaker varieties. The
fruit is of good size and appearance. Its color is purple over-
spread with a thick bloom. Its quality is fairly good for can-
ning but very poor for other purposes.

36, The Middleburg is one of the best varieties of the
domestica species for planting in the region of New York. The



Fig. 11

trees of this variety are of medium size, hardy, and usually
productive. The variety is excellent for home-orchard col-
lections and may be growai commercially with profit. The
fniit is somewhat surpassed in appearance by other purple
plums, but few are better in quality. As illustrated in Fig. 12,
the fruit is of good size. It varies in color from a light to a
deep puiplish red overspread with a thick bloom. These
plums ripen late, hang to the tree well, and keep and ship well.



Digitized by



Google



§ 12 PLUM CULTURE 17

37. The first of the native group of plums to receive a name
was the Miner, which is a variety of the hortulana species.
This variety is extensively grown in the Middle West, and from
it many valuable varieties have been developed. It is unpro-
ductive tmless cross-fertilized. The trees are robust and usually
productive. The fruit is of mediimi size, dark red, of good
quality, and is especially suited for culinary use. It is some-
what late in ripening and is comparatively curculio proof.



Pig. 12

38. The Monarch is one of the most popular of the recently
introduced varieties of the domestica species. The trees are
of medium size and vigor. The fruit is of good size and form,
and, being of a rich, ptuple color, presents a handsome appear-
ance. The quality, however, is not of the best, but it ranks
well with that of other ptuple plimis. The fruit ripens late.

39. The Moreman is the hardiest variety of the hor-
tulana species. The trees are vigorous growers. The fruit



Digitized by



Google



18 PLUM CULTURE § 12

is bright red and of pleasant flavor, but is small and for this
reason not so satisfactory as that of several other varieties
of this species.

40. The best late variety of the triflora species is the
October, which is, however, not especially desirable. The
trees are late in coming into bearing and cannot be depended



Pig. 13

on to bear satisfactory^ crops regtilarly. The fruit is large,
dark red, juicy, and of good flavor.

41, The Pond is a variety of the domestica species. The
trees of this variety are of medium size and vigorous in growth.
The fruit, which is illustrated in Fig. 13, is larger than that of
any other variety of the domestica. It is purple in color and
presents a very pleasing appearance, but is only fair in quality.



Digitized by



Google



Fig. 15 512 2490J



Digitized by



Google



Digitized by



Google



§ 12 PLUM CULTURE 19

42. A plum especially adapted to northern latitudes is the
Pottawattamie, which is a variety of the munsoniana species.
The trees of this species are dwarf, vigorous, and productive,
and will grow as far north as the 44th parallel. The fruit is
medium in size and of a currant-red color. It is pleasant in
flavor and of fair to good quaUty.

43. The Quackenboss is a variety of the domestica
species. The trees of this variety are large, vigorous, and



Fig, 14

hardy, but do not have the reputation of being fruitful. The
fruit, which is illustrated in Fig. 14, is of large size, has a dark
purple color, and is covered with a heavy bloom. It is sweet
and of pleasant flavor, and is an excellent market plum.

44. The Satsuma is a variety of the triflora species. The
trees of this variety are mediimi to large in size. They are
fairly hardy and are moderately productive. The fruit, which
is illustrated in Fig. 15, is of mediimi size and has a dark, dull-
red color; the flesh is a dark purplish red. The fruit is the best



Digitized by



Google



20 PLUM CULTURE § 12

of the red-fleshed plums for either dessert or culinary purposes.
It keeps and ships well, but when grown in the Southern States
is subject to brown rot.

45. The Shropshire, which is a variety of the insititia
species, is probably the best known of the varieties that have
developed from the Damson variety. The trees surpass
those of all other varieties of insititia in vigor, hardiness, and
freedom from disease, and these qualities make the variety a
general favorite. The fruit, which is illustrated in Fig. 16,
is one of the best plums for culinary purposes and may also be
eaten out of hand with relish when fully ripe or after a light



Fig. 16

frost. The fruit is of very good size and quality, but in both
of these respects it is surpassed by that of the French variety.
The color is purplish black overspread with thick bloom.

46. The Washington is a variety of the domestica species
and one of the best of the varieties that have been developed
from the Green Gage. The trees of this variety are large,
vigorous, hardy, and very productive. The fruit, which is
illustrated in Fig. 17, is large for a variety developed from the
Green Gage; in color, it is greenish yellow or light yellow;
in flavor, it is fine. These plums are imsurpassed for dessert
purposes and they keep and ship well.



Digitized by



Google



Fig. 17 512 24909



Digitized by



Google



Digitized by



Google



§ 12 PLUM CULTURE 21

47. The Way land, a variety of the hortulana species,
is especially valuable for growers in the South and the Middle
West, as the trees are able to withstand hot, dry weather better
than those of any other species. The trees are large, hardy,
and productive. The fruit, which is illustrated in Fig. 18,
is small and of a dark, currant-red color. It is sour but of fair
to good quality and is excellent for jeUies and preserves. The
fruit ripens very late.

48. The Wild Goose plum is a variety of the munsoniana
species. It is probable that more trees of this variety are cul-



PlG. 18

tivated than of any other native plum. The trees are very
large and vigorous, but should always be planted near some
other native variety for cross-pollination. The fruit, which
ripens very early, is of meditim size, bright red in color, and of
good flavor. The skin of the plums of this variety is tough,
which makes them especially good for shipment and for long
keeping.

49. One of the standard native plums is the Wolf, which
is a variety of the Americana species; it is well adapted for
growing in the northern part of the Mississippi Valley. The
trees of this variety are large, vigorous, hardy, and productive.



Digitized by



Google



22 PLUM CULTURE § 12

The fruit is small to medium in size and dull crimson in color.
It is freestone and fair to good in quality.

50. The Yellow Egg plum is a variety of the domestica
species. The tree is large, hardy, and productive. The fruit
is the largest and handsomest of the yellow plums, but is fit
only for culinary use.

PLUM-ORCHARD ESTABLISHMENT AND
MANAGEMENT



NURSEIiY TREES

51. Methods of Proi>agation. — In some parts of Amer-
ica plums are propagated by means of sprouts from the base
of old trees. This can be done only in the case of trees growing
on their own roots, otherwise the sprouts will not be of the
same variety as the tree from which they are taken. It is said
by some growers that this method of propagation produces
trees that sent up many sprouts from the roots. This method
is inexpensive, but it is not used extensively. Plums are gener-
ally propagated either by grafting or by budding. The stock
may be grown from seed by the orchardist or 1-year-old stock
may be purchased from importers. The method of grafting
generally used is to root graft on 1-year-old stock. Top graft-
ing of old plimi trees is practiced very little. It is, however,
used in some cases to renew the tops of trees that have been
broken. When plums are propagated by budding, 1 -year-old
trees are secured for stock. The roots and tops are trimmed
and the trees set out in the spring. Thorough cultivation is
maintained throughout the season, and the stock is budded as
soon as the buds mature on the parent trees, which is some
time in August. The bud remains dormant imtil the following
sprmg, when growth starts and the top of the stock should be
cut off just above the bud. The tree may be dug the following
fall and sold as a 1 -year-old tree, the age of the bud being con-
sidered, or the tree may be allowed to grow for another year
and sold as a 2-year-old tree.



Digitized by



Google



§ 12 PLUM CULTURE 23

52. Stocks for Propagation. — ^Plums are successfully
grown on a number of different stocks. The kind of stock used
by niu*serymen depends on the variety of plums to be grown,
the type of soil, and the location in which the tree is to be
grown. There is, however, comparatively little experimental
data on the subject. A fruit grower generally accepts the
stock his ntirseryman claims to be best for his conditions.
In New England and the North Atlantic States, Myrobalan
stock is generally used, although some of the Japanese plums
are worked on the peach, especially for sandy land, and some
of the native species are worked on Americana stock. For
the Gulf States and north to Southern Pennsylvania the peach
is preferred, especially for light soils, with the Myrobalan as
second choice. For the interior region west of the Atlantic
States, north of the Gulf States, and east of the Mississippi
River, the Myrobalan is used as stock for the Eiuropean plimis
and for most others, although some nurserymen prefer the
St. JuHen as a stock for the domestica and some varieties of
the insititia, but object to the high cost of importing this
variety. In this region the peach is generally recommended
for the triflora species and Americana stock for the native
species. In the states in the northern part of the Mississippi
Valley all plums must be worked on native stocks, and in
this region nothing but native varieties are grown. On the
plains, the Myrobalan is used almost exclusively for European
varieties and most largely for the triflora varieties, with the
peach second, and Americana stock is used for the native
varieties. In Oklahoma, Texas, and New Mexico the Amer-
icana is used. On the Pacific coast the Myrobalan and the
peach are used in about equal numbers, the first for heavy
soils and the latter for light soils. The almond is sometimes
used in California, and some plum growers in that state propagate
their own trees from suckers.

In New York, the Myrobalan stock is used almost exclu-
sively, because when grown on this stock, the trees at 2 years
of age are larger and finer than those grown on other stocks.
Other advantages are that the stock is cheap, is easy to bud,
makes a good imion with nearly all varieties, and can be



Digitized by



Google



24 PLUM CULTURE § 12

imported in large numbers from France. The defects of the
Myrobalan as a stock are that there is considerable variation
on account of the stock being grown from seed, that in the
South it suckers badly, and that in the colder states, on
the great plains, and even in the coldest parts of New York,
the roots are winter killed.

Formerly St. Julien stock was used to some extent, and some
growers still claim that it is a much better stock than any other
for the domestica and certain insititia varieties, including the
Damson. This claim is based on the behef that the trees are
longer lived, more thrifty, more hardy, and sucker less. Its
disadvantages are that it is expensive, hard to obtain, dif-
ficult to bud, and the stock is subject to fungous troubles in
the nursery row. It does not make a good tree at 2 years old,
and in order to keep the stock true to type it must be propagated
by layering. Where the soil and climate are favorable to its
growth, the peach is largely used as stock for plimis, because
it makes a quick growth, the trees come into bearing early,
and the roots do not produce sprouts. For the domestica and
for the Damson varieties of the insititia, the peach is not good
stock, as the roots are less hardy than the tops and some varie-
ties make a poor union. Peach stock makes a good union with
the triflora varieties, but peach borers are sometimes trouble-
some when peach stock is used.

The Marianna pltmi has been used largely in the Southern
States as a stock. It is believed to be a hybrid between Myrob-
alan and the native Chickasaw plimi and is propagated from
cuttings, but is not hardy in the North. In the colder parts
of the great plains and as far east as Wisconsin, the Americana
seedlings are the best stocks to use for growing the native
pltuns, which are the only ones adapted to these sections.
The disadvantages of this stock are that the seed is expensive
and the trees sucker rather badly. The western sand cherry
is used as a stock for dwarfing varieties of pltims. This stock is
extremely hardy and produces trees that bear early and abun-
dantly and are able to endure a colder and drier climate than
trees grown on most other stocks. The sand cherry is some-
times budded on Americana seedlings and grown for its fruit.



Digitized by



Google



§ 12 PLUM CULTURE 25

53. Selecting of Nursery Trees, — ^The general tendency
of purchasers when buying trees is to demand a large tree,
and the nurseryman has catered to this demand by charging
more for large than for small trees; in fact, the trees are sold
by height and caliper, and a tree 1 inch in caliper and 6 feet
tall is considered to be worth more than a tree f inch in
caliper and 6 feet tall. A sliding scale of prices is fixed so that
a tree of f inch caliper and 5 feet tall is sold for still less.
The caliper is taken 2 inches above the bud and the height is
taken from the bud to the top of the limbs.

Experience has shown that a large tree is not the best to
plant. A strong 1-year-old tree 3 to 4 feet in height is a better
tree to plant than the best 2-year-old tree, as more of the root
system is taken up with the tree, which is easier to dig, easier
to plant, and less costly to ship, and at the end of 4 years will
probably show better growth than a 2-year-old tree planted
beside it. Another advantage of planting small trees is that it
is much easier to form the head on a 1-year-old tree than on
a 2-year-old. The disadvantage to the ntirseryman in selling
the 1-year-old trees is that there are frequently trees in the
block that may be sold as light grades at 2 years old that
would be too small to sell at 1 year old, and if only the best
trees are sold, a higher price for each tree must be secured.

54. Description of a Good Nursery Tree. — ^A good
nursery tree should be on roots adapted to the locality in which
it is to be planted, and should be well grown for the variety.
Varieties, however, differ considerably in growth. For exam-
ple, a Lombard will have a straighter trunk and be larger than
a Green Gage of the same age. A tree for planting should be
free from diseases and insect pests, should have a good root
system, and should have normally matured its buds before being
dug. Many nurserymen practice stripping the leaves from
young trees early in the fall to compel the tree to ripen its
wood to be ready for early shipment. Trees that have been
stripped are not so vigorous as those that are allowed to mature
normally, and they make a poor growth the first year after
planting. Fig. 19 (a) shows a No. 1 grade, 2-year-old, German



Digitized by



Google



26



PLUM CULTURE



§12



Prune tree. This tree measured 4 feet 11 inches above the bud
and 7 inches below and calipered fj inch; (?>) shows a No. 2
grade, 2-year-old, German Prune tree that measiu*ed 5 feet 1 inch




above the bud and 8 inches below and caHpered | inch; (c) shows
a No. 3 grade, 2-year-old, German Prune tree that meastired
4 feet above the bud and 7 inches below and calipered § inch.



ESTABLISHMENT OF THE ORCHARD

55. Influence of Climate on Plum Culture. — CUmate

is one of the most important factors in plimi cultiure, for^it
largely determines what varieties can be grown in a locality
or whether plums can be grown at all. Extremes of heat and
cold are unfavorable to plimi growing, and cold, wet, or windy



Digitized by



Google



§12 PLUM CULTURE 27

weather at blooming time materially reduces the yield. At
the Geneva, New'York, Experiment Station, records show that



Online LibraryInternational Correspondence SchoolsPeach culture: plum culture; grape culture; strawberries; raspberries ... → online text (page 8 of 35)