J. C. (John Claudius) Loudon.

An encyclopaedia of gardening; comprising the theory and practice of horticulture, floriculture, arboriculture, and landscape-gardening, including all the latest improvements; a general history of gardening in all countries; and a statistical view of its present stat, with suggestions for its future online

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Online LibraryJ. C. (John Claudius) LoudonAn encyclopaedia of gardening; comprising the theory and practice of horticulture, floriculture, arboriculture, and landscape-gardening, including all the latest improvements; a general history of gardening in all countries; and a statistical view of its present stat, with suggestions for its future → online text (page 236 of 313)
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the present value of fifty pounds, due sixteen years hence, the market price of money
being five per cent. ? and this, according to any of the modern annuity tables (say Bailey s y
4to. 1808. tab. iv.) is 221. 18s. This principle is applicable to all kinds of valuing by
anticipation ; and there is no other mode of valuing applicable to young plantations. The
benefits derived from the trees in the way of shelter and ornament, are to be estimated in
valuing the territory, and are foreign to the present purpose, which has for its object tree-
produce only.

6968. In valuing saleable trees of any kind, their number per acre, or their total number by enumeration
being ascertained, and the kinds and sizes classed, then each class is to be estimated according to its worth
as timber, fence-wood, fuel, bark, &c. " In a coppice-wood which cannot readily be measured, the
readiest method of counting the stools is, to cause two men to take a line, say about a hundred feet.long,
or more, and passing the line round as many of the stools as it will enclose, the one man standing still
while the other moves round a new number of stools, and count always the stools betwixt the two lines,
causing the one man to move the one time with the line, whilst the other man stands still, and so on alter-
nately. The valuator at the same time taking care to average every twenty stools as they go on, before
losing sight of the counted stools. This way, too, is a very speedy and sure method of counting the num-
ber of trees in any plantation. Or, the stools of a coppice-wood may be counted and averaged by two men
going parallel to each other, and the person valuing going betwixt them ; the two men putting up marks
with moss, or pieces of white paper, on a branch ofthe stools ; the one man going always back by the last
laid marks, and the valuator always counting and averaging the stools betwixt the newly-laid and the late-
laid marks ; counting and averaging the stools always as the men go on, taking only twenty, or even ten
stools at a time. To those who have been in the practice of doing this frequently, it will be found very
easy, and will be done very speedily, and with a very considerable degree of accuracy. The proper method
of learning to do this correctly is, when a person cuts an oak wood for the first time (or, even were the
work repeated several times), he should then, in order to make himself perfectly acquainted with ascer-
taining the average quantity of bark that a stool, or even a stem of a stool will produce, go before the
peelers, and select a stool or stem : after having examined it narrowly, he supposes it to produce a certain
quantity of bark, and marks this down in his memorandum-book. He then causes a person to peel it by
itself, dry it, and carefully tie it up, and weigh it, and compare it with the weight he supposed it to pro-
duce, and he will at once see how near his calculation comes to the truth. A stem of oak from a natural
stool, suppose it to measure in girth two inches, by seven feet long, will contain two solid inches and one
third of an inch, according to the measurement of Hoppus This stem or shoot will produce two pounds
two ounces of bark. Again, a stem or shoot of natural oak, measuring four inches in girth, by nine feet
in length, will be found to contain one solid foot of wood, and will produce thirteen pounds and a half of
bark." {Forester's Guide, 170.)

6969. When growing trees are valued, an allowance is made from their cubic contents for the bark. The
rule given by Monteath is, " when the girth or circumference is any thing from twelve inches up to
twenty-four inches, then deduct two inches ; from twenty-four to thirty-six, three inches ; from thirty-
six to forty-eight, four inches; from forty-eight to seventy-two, five inches; and above seventy-two, six
inches." These deductions, he says, " will be found (o answer in almost all trees ; unless in such as are
very old, and have rough and corky" barks or barks covered with moss, when an extra allowance is to be
made," (Forester's Guide, 180.) " Many persons," the same author observes, "in valuing measurable
oak-trees, proceed on the data that every cubic foot of timber will produce a stone (sixteen pounds) of bark.
This," he says, " is not ahva}'s correct ;"" and he states the following facts from his own experience, with
a view to assist beginners in ascertaining the quantity of bark from various trees. " An oak-tree, about
forty years old, measured down to four inches and a half side of the square, and weighing only the bark
peeled off the timber that is measured, without including any of the bark of the spray, &c. every foot of
measured timber will produce from nine to eleven pounds of bark. An oak-tree, of eighty years old,
weighing only the bark peeled off the measurable timber, as above, every foot will produce from ten to
thirteen pounds of bark. Every foot of large birch-timber, peeled as above, will produce fourteen pounds
of bark. Every foot of mountain ash, as above, will produce eleven pounds and a half of bark. Every foot
of the willow, unless a very old tree, will produce from nine to eleven pounds. Every foot of larch fir, not
exceeding thirty years old, will produce from seven to nine pounds of bark. The timber of trees, particu-
larly the oak, is peeled out, every branch and shoot, down as small as an inch in circumference." (Forest-
er's Guide, 189.) The price of timber, like that of every other article in general use, varies with the supply
and demand ; and is easily ascertained from the timber-merchants at the different sea-ports ; as is that of
bark, charcoal, and fire-wood from the tanners and coal-merchants.

6970. To facilitate the measuring of ' slandi?ig timber, Monteath has invented a very in-
genious machine. (Jig. 667.) It consists of a wheel, or perambulator, about eight inches
in diameter, with a bell (a) on the end of
its axle ; at the end of every foot gone
over by the serrated circumference of the
perambulator, this bell is struck by means
of a spring (6) ; the sound of this bell will
be heard from the top of the highest tree.
A forked handle (c) works on the top of
the main axle on each side of the wheel ;
one of a set of connecting rods (e, h) goes
into it, and is fixed with a screw making a
swivel joint, and by screwing the nut firm,
the wheel can be set to any position, and it
will work equally well any way. A small
hand (d), in the circle of the triangular
spring, points to the inches or quarters of
an inch on the wheel, and tells what exceeds the inch after a lesser spring (e), which strikes
at every inch has struck the bell. The circumference of the wheel (f) measures two
feet, lhe rods for workmg the measuring machine are each three feet long, and one inch
m diameter, with connecting screws of hrass on each end of them ; so that as many as are


required for any length or height, can be easily screwed into each other. The other small
rods for taking the length of the tree, as also of its branches, are only five eighths of an
inch in diameter : each rod is three feet long, and goes togedier with connecting screws
of brass. The rods are painted black, and divided into feet and inches, with white let-
ters ; so that by connecting any number of the rods together that may be required, and by
applying them to the tree or branches (&), you can take the exact length in a speedy, ac-
curate, and simple manner. (Forester s Guide, 207.)

6971. The value of the invention turns on the use of the wheel, in taking the girth of the tree. Thus,
" after having taken the length of the tree in feet and inches, which length may be taken by the rods as
already described, the girth is most generally taken at half the length, which girth we are enabled to take
with the measuring wheel : this is easily done, by putting up the wheel, with as many of the connecting
rods together as will put it up to the height required ; then, suppose there are no branches in the way, and
having before made a mark on the bark of the tree with the small rods, the uppermost one having a small
marking-iron in its end for that purpose ; this mark is made where the girth is to be taken, and from where
you are to take your departure with the wheel, which being done, press the wheel round the tree, following
it, and keeping "it as level as possible, which the wheel will in a great measure do of itself, by its having
teeth like a saw in the hem of the wheel, unless carelessly attended to. As the wheel goes round the tree,
be sure to count the number of times the bell strikes, which it does at every foot ; and when you see you
have not another twelve inches or one foot more to run, to arrive at the place where you took your depar-
ture from, count the number of inches that it strikes over and above the last foot, and thus you will at once
have the feet and inches that the tree is in circumference; of which take the fourth, and this gives you
the side of the square : but when there are branches in the way of getting round the tree, you must have
a spare handle for the machine (e, h), about two feet, or two feet six inches in length, and by altering the
swivel-joint at the top of the first rod to any position required, the person working the wheel by the rods
can stand in the same place, and put the wheel, say half way round the tree, if it is very large, and by
turning the swivel-joint, and reversing the wheel, at the same time sending it round the other side of the
tree till it meet where it left off, and by counting the feet and inches as above, and adding the two together,
you will at once have the extreme girth of the tree. When branches are to measure, or when branches are
in the way of getting round the tree with the rods, the person with the small rods stands on the opposite
side of the tree, and directs the person when to stop with the wheel. Thus, by a little practice in working
the wheel, and paying attention to count the feet and inches as they strike, two men will measure growing
or standing trees equally as accurately and expeditiously as if the trees were lying on the ground. In
taking the girth with a line, you have first to put it round the tree, then you double it, and apply it to a
foot-rule ; you then take the half for the side of the square, whereas this machine gives you the exact feet
and inches "from the top of the highest tree, without the help of any other rule." {Forester's Guide, 208.)
Neither this machine, nor a mechanical dendrometer, invented about twenty years ago, though both of
considerable merit, appear to us so well calculated for general use as the Timber Measurer of Broad, {fig. 154.)

6972. The books of accounts for trees and plantations have already been mentioned.
(2340.) Some have proposed measuring the whole of, or at least all the detached and
hedge-row trees on an estate periodically ; numbering each tree, and keeping a corre-
sponding register, by which the proprietor, when at a distance, might give directions for
cutting down particular trees, &c. ; but this appears rather too much in the mercantile
style for the dignified enjoyment of landed property, and does not promise any very great

Chap. VII.

Of the Formation of a Nursery- Garden for the Propagation and Rearing of Trees aiul


6973. Nurseries for rearing trees are commonly left to commercial gardeners, as the
plantations of few private landowners are so extensive, or continued through a suf-
ficient number of years to render it worth their while to originate and nurse up their
own tree and hedge plants. Exceptions, however, occur in the case of remote situ-
ations, and where there are tracts so extensive as to require many years in planting. Be
sides, as Sang observes, " some are of opinion, that trees, in order to their being rendered
sufficiently hardy, should be reared on the soil and situation where they are ulti-
mately to be planted , and if the design be extensive, and such as may require many
years for its completion ; a conveniently situated nursery is, in that case, highly de-
sirable, not only as saving the carriage of plants, and facilitating the business of trans-
planting, but as increasing the chance of success, on account of the plants remaining a
much shorter time out of the ground than if brought from a distance. If the situation,
however, ultimately destined for the trees be cold, high, and bleak, and the soil of course
various, some good, and much of it bad, or of an indifferent quality, there it would by
no means be advisable to attempt the establishment of a nursery, and especially a nur-
sery to raise plants from seeds. The chief properties of nursery plants intended for
transplanting, consist in their strength and cleanness of stem, and in their roots having
a multiplicity of healthy fibres ; and in order to obtain plants possessing these qualities,
it is necessary to sow, and plant out to nurse, if not in rich, at least in mellow earth,
and in a moderately sheltered situation." (Plant. Kal. 20.) The following directions
by Sang as to the soil, shelter, aspect, and fencing of a nursery -gardeh are equally ap-
plicable' to such as are intended for private or commercial purposes :

6974 In order to have a complete nursery, it should contain soils of various qualities, and not less than
eighteen inchesor two feet deep; the generality of it should be light friable earth ; a part of it should be


of a clavcv nature ; and another part should be mossy. Each of these will lie found peculiarly useful in
the raising of the different kinds of young plants. The whole should be well drained, and trenched, and
cropped with vegetables for one or even two vears previously to sowing tree-seeds. For transplanting, it
in iv be used the first year. A nurserv may certainly be over-sheltered ; " but this is likely to happen
only in the case of its being very small ; for, if it extend to several acres, unless it be surrounded by very
tall trees, the area will be considerably exposed. No part should be either too much exposed, or too
much sheltered. Any aspect from east to west, following the course of the sun, will answer. Ground of an
unequal surface is most likely to contain the various soils above mentioned. A nursery should, therefore,
in general, rise from a level to a pretty smart acclivity ; yet no part of it should be too steep, because it is
in that case very troublesome to labor. The nursery-ground may be sufficiently fenced by a stone wall,
or even a hedge six feet high ; and if it be of small size, an acre or thereabouts, it will require no other
shelter ; but if it extend to four or five acres, it must have dividing hedges properly situated, to afford
shelter over all the space. The fence, whether of thorns or stone, should be made proof against the ad-
mission of hares or rabbits. It should be subdivided into compartment* and borders, of proportionate size
to the contents of the area, by walks. The compartments should never be encumbered with large trees,
as apples, pears, or the like ; because, being already established in the ground, they never fail to rob the
voung trees of their food, and to cause them to be poor and stunted, unworthy of being planted in the
forest. It would be very convenient to have a rill of water passing through the ground, or to have a small
pond, fed by a spring or a pipe, for the purpose of watering." (Plant. Kal. 22.)

6975. In preparing the soil for the culture of trees it will be advisable to trench it to its full depth, and
" necessary," the same author continues, " to give it a good dressing of lime or marl and dung in com-
post. Rank manure, such as stable-litter, should not be applied to nursery-ground, at the time of crop-
ping, with nursery articles ; but if it be necessary to enrich it, this should be done by a manured crop of
onions, turnips, lettuces, or the like. Potatoes should never go before a crop of seedlings, even of the
coarser sorts, as ash, oak, or chestnuts ; because potatoes never can be taken clean out of the ground ;
and it being indispensable to pull up those which rise among the tree-seedlings, many of these unavoidably
coine up along with them. Hence, crops of lettuces, turnips, cabbages, or the like, should rather pre-
cede the crop of seedlings. The best kind of management in this particular case, is to interchange the
crops of timber-trees and esculents occasionally ; perhaps, with respect to most sorts of seedling-plants,
alternately observing to sow all small seeds, in particular, if not in a rich, at least in a fine tilth."
(Plant. Kal. 24.)

697b*. For a private nursery, he continues, " no place, certainly, can be more eligible than a field,
which may also be occupied as a kitchen-garden. If, for instance, three acres were required for the
purposes of nursery, and one or two acres were also required for extra kitchen-ground, or for green crops
for cattle-feeding, it would be proper to enclose five or six acres, less or more, according to circumstances ;
by which means two important objects might be obtained, viz. land of a good quality, and fine tilth, for the
raising of seedlings ; and an opportunity of effectually changing crops at pleasure. Carrots are peculiarly
scourging for a nursery, and, indeed, rather severe for most lands : but we have very seldom found a
good crop of trees following one of carrots ; while we have found peas, beans, and especially lettuces,
easy and enriching crops, well adapted as preparers for succeeding crops of nursery articles."

6977. In so far as respects public nurseries, " we have long remarked, that those which are as much
market-gardens as nurseries, generally produce the best seedlings, and young articles, for sale ; provided
that their ground be any thing more than of a middling quality. This fact, if one were wanting, is a suf-
ficient proof of the utility of occupying the ground as above advised, in the double character of a kitchen-
garden and nursery."

6978. In a cold climate, or bleak situation, " with a poor barren soil, we would by no means advise the
raising of seedlings, either in public or private nurseries. It will be found a cheaj^er, as well as a more
satisfactory method, to purchase seedlings, transplant them, and nurse them till fit for final planting;
and, even, in this case, a piece of the best, and most sheltered land in the situation, will be necessary
for the purpose." (Plant. Kal. 26.)

6979. A rotting-ground will be required for the preparation of certain seeds, by mixing them with sand,
ashes, or soil, and leaving them there for different periods, from six months to two years, to rot off their
interior coverings. On a small scale, a portion of the compost-ground of the kitchen-garden may be
used for this purpose. If the scale is large, an area of a few square poles should be set apart for bed-
ding in plants taken up for replanting, or what is called laying in by the heels, or shoughing : this is ge-
nerally called the bedding-ground or (in Scotland) the shoughing-ground.

6980. Buildings. If the situation of the nursery be near to the kitchen-garden, and the latter have the
proper office-buildings (1701.), no other erection will be required for the nursery than a working-shed for
ordinary purposes, occasional shelter, and protection to newly taken up plants ; and for packing or tying
them up properly before sending them to their final situation, &c. Frames and hand-glasses may be re-
quired for some of the more tender seeds and seedlings ; and, on a large scale, a seed-loft and its ap-
pendages, as well as an office for writing, &c. may require to be erected apart from those belonging to the

6981. Stocking with plants. The ground being arranged, and prepared by one or more vegetable crops
the next thing is to stock it with stools, or stock plants, to propagate from by layers, and to procure stocks
for grafting or budding, but especially in a private forest-tree nursery with tree-seeds. In the tables of
ornamental trees and shrubs (6540. to 6571.), given in the preceding book ; and in the general index at the
end of the work will be found the particular mode of propagation, and the requisite soil for each
tree and shrub : by inspecting these sources it will be seen what plants must be procured for stools If
lhe object is merely forest culture, few, excepting some of limes, poplars, and planes, will be required
lut, it tender trees and shrubs are to be reared, the number will be more considerable. Plant the
tenderer sorts in the sheltered borders, and the more hardy in the open compartments: the tree kinds
may be placed from six to eight feet every way, and the more delicate shrubs from three to six feet apart
in su. table soils. Stocks for grafting, whether for fruit or barren trees, are to be planted in nurserv
rows, according to their kinds ; those for marching round the parent plant (2007.) or in pots.

Chap. VIII.
Of the Culture and Management of a Nursery for Trees and Shrubs.
6982. The principal objects of culture in a private tree-nursery are the hardy trees and
shrubs of the country, which produce seeds ; and the great object of the private nursery-
gardener must be to collect or procure these seeds, prepare them for sowing, sow them in
their proper season?, and transplant and nurse them till fit for final planting. We shall
arrange the principal trees and shrubs which ripen their seeds in this country ; as cones,
nuts, berried stones, berries with small seeds, leguminous seeds, and small soft seeds.


Before treating of the gathering, storing, separating the seeds, sowing, and nursery cul-
ture, of each of these general divisions, it is essential to remark, that in collecting every
kind of tree-seed, preference should be given to that produced by trees the largest and
most perfect of their kind, and to the fullest and best-ripened seeds on these trees. The
reasons have been too frequently given in>bis work to require repetition.

Sect. I. Coniferous Trees and Shrubs, their Seeds, Sowing, and Bearing.
69S3. The principal hardy coniferous trees and s/irubs are as follow :

Juniperus vinriniana, December
L'upressus Ihiiyoides January

sempervirens, January

Pinus balsamea, September

larix, December

canadensis, November

Finus svlvestris, November

p'icea, October

abies, November

nigra, November

pinca, December

Tin us strobus, October

pinaster, December

cedrus, March.

Thuya occidental^, November

orientalis, November.

G9S4. Cones may be gathered any time between the ripening season and the following
April ; but the sooner they are gathered the better, as they supply work for the regular
hands of the establishment in bad weather during the winter months ; or admit of givin^
industrious money-making persons work by the job in the winter evenings. The gene-
ral mode of separating the seeds is by kiln-drying, in the same way as in drying malt,
but applying a more gentle heat.

6985. The cone-kiln is constructed after the manner of a common malt-kiln : the bearers should be
about nine feet distant from the fire, and two inches apart A wire cloth is spread over them from side to
side of the kiln, and the cones are laid on it to the thickness of twelve or fourteen inches. A gentle fire is
then applied, and regularly kept up till the cones become opened. During the time of drying, the cones
must be frequently turned upon the kiln ; and when the seeds begin to drop out, they must be removed
to the seed-loft, and sifted till all the seeds which are loose fall out, and be taken from among the cones.
The cones are afterwards to be thrashed severely with flails, or passed through a hand-threshing machine,
and sifted as before, and so on, till the seeds are taken out as completely as possible. It is, however, a
safer method to split the larch-cones before putting them into the kiln. This operation is performed by a
small flat triangular spatula, sharpened at the point and cutting-angles, and helved like a shoemaker's
awl. The cone is held by the fore-finger and thumb of the one hand, upon a flat piece of wood, while,
with the other, by the splitter, it is split up from the great end ; and afterwards each half is split up the
middle, which parts the cone into four divisions. This is by far the best and least destructive to the seeds
of any method we know ; because the cones so split, when exposed to the heat, are suddenly opened, and
readily discharge the seeds; which, consequently, are less injured by the fire-heat. Besides the above me.

Online LibraryJ. C. (John Claudius) LoudonAn encyclopaedia of gardening; comprising the theory and practice of horticulture, floriculture, arboriculture, and landscape-gardening, including all the latest improvements; a general history of gardening in all countries; and a statistical view of its present stat, with suggestions for its future → online text (page 236 of 313)