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Myron A Hunt.

How to grow cut flowers. A practical treatise on the cultivation of the rose, carnation, chrysanthemum, violet, and other winter flowering plants. Also greenhouse construction .. online

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Online LibraryMyron A HuntHow to grow cut flowers. A practical treatise on the cultivation of the rose, carnation, chrysanthemum, violet, and other winter flowering plants. Also greenhouse construction .. → online text (page 1 of 25)
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RY OF CONGRESS.

Cliap....:>>Copyright No.

Slielf.....All. 2j



UNITED STATES OF AMERICA.



AUG ^ m6



.^'ir.,.. ,..-,*»*•



Greenhouse Management

A Manual for Florists and Flower Lovers



ON THE



Forcing of Flowers, Vegetables and Fruits



IN



GREENHOUSES,



AND THE



Propagation and Care of House Plants.



BY

L. E. TAFT

Professor of Horticxdtnre and La7id!iC(tj>e Garfleiihu/, Michigan Agricultural
College, and author of ^^ Greenhouse Construction."



ILLUSTRATED




NEW YORK -^

ORANGE JUDD COMPANY

1898

'^- TWO COPIES RECEIVED.



^ \%<\< — ^•^'\'^



i i



Copyright, 1898,
By orange judd company



n6



PREFACE.



The florist finds that in his profession changes are
continually taking place, and if he would succeed he
must keep up with the procession. Not only are new
and improved methods continually being brought into
use, but the plants that he grows change from year to
year. A few years ago camellias, tuberoses and bouvar-
dias were among the plants that were most grown, but
now, if grown at all, they have but a small place. Not
only does Fashion change the classes of plants that are
grown, but from year to year the varieties change, and
the methods of culture improve.

To inform hinu^elf as to the methods that have
been found valuable l)y his competitors, one can, to be
sure, look to the horticultural periodicals, which con-
tain much valuable information, but tlie books to which
he can go for advice are few and most of them are out
of date. To sui)ply a source from which information as
to the methods used by the more successful florists can
be drawn, this b(K)k has been prepared. As originally
written it consisted of about ten chapters, which were
intended as a sort of jippendix to Greenhouse Construc-
tion, but the subject of Greenhouse Management was
deemed worthy of a separate volume, and accordingly
the copy was withdrawn from the printer and consid-
erably added to.

An attem])t has been made in this book to give to
florists an insight into the methods that are to-day being
used by their intelligent and successful brethren. In
nearly every case they have been tried by the author, or

iii



iy GREEXHOL'SE MANAGEMENT.

bo lias seen the results of their use in numerous in-
stances, so that they can be used without hesitation. It
is lio])ed that the information as to the best methods of
forcing vegetables will be of especial valuer as but little
attention has been given that industry, which is one
that is rapidly increasing in importance. Although
this subject has perhaps received less space than it really
deserves, we have endeavored to present it in a clear and
concise form that can be followed and understood by
anyone.

In treating the standard crops of the commercial
florist, such as the rose, carnation, violet and chrysan-
themum, we have touched upon the time and method of
cultivation and the general care required in growing
them, but have not deemed it wortli while to go into
lengthy descriptions of varieties, as they change from
year to year ; the lists given, however, are those that are
to-day deemed most valuable.

Florists are more and more, each year, troubled by
injurious insects and fungi. For many of them we have
2)ointed out the treatment, and have added a list of rem-
edies which includes those that are considered most
reliable. In the chapters devoted to the care of house
plants, we have indicated the methods of growing and
caring for the plants that are commonly grown in the
house.

Many of the illustrations are from drawings and
photographs made under the direction of the author,
and for the others we are indebted to the kindness of
friends. Several were furnished by the publishers of
the American Agriculturist, Avhile most of the half
tones of the specimen pots, and of specimen blooms, as
well as Figs. 4T, 91 and 02, were supplied by rhe pub-
lishers of The Florisfs Exclimuje and American Gar-
dening. AYe jire also indebted to Gardening aiul The
American Florist. Many of the cuts illustrating the



PREFACE. V

interiors of grcoiilioiises used for various crops, ns well
as the cultural methods used, were sn[)plied by various
specialists. Thus, Mr. Alex. Montgomery of the Waban
conservatories, Natick, Mass., furnished cuts of their
rose houses; Fred Dorner & Son, Lafayette, In<l., and
The Cottage Gardens, Queens, L. I., carnations ; Pitcher
& Manda, Short Hills, N. J., and E. D. Smith, Adrian,
Mich., chrysanthemnms ; Fred Boulon, Sea CUiff, L. L,
Hitchings & Co., New York, and Profs. Galloway and
Dorsett, Garrett Park, Md., violets; J. C. Vaughan,
Chicago, III., J. M. Gasser, Cleveland, Ohio, and Cush-
man Gladiolus Co., Euclid, 0., bulbs; W. H. Elliott,
Brighton, Mass., asparagus house; and Julius Roehrs,
Carlton Hill, N. J., miscellaneous ])lants. Acknowl-
edgments are also due for the use of cuts and for help-
ful suggestions to the following officers of experiment
stations: Prof. L. H. Bailey, Ithaca, N. Y., Prof. S. T.
Maynard, Amherst, Mass., Prof. W. M. Munson, Orono,
Me., Prof. L. F. Kinney, Kingston, R. I., Prof. C. S.
Plumb, Lafayette, Ind,, and Prof. R. L. Watts, Knox-
ville, Tenn., as well as Prof. B. D. Halsted of New Jer-
sey, for the article on Violet Diseases, and Prof. W. J.
Green, Wooster, Ohio, who supplied the article on
Sub-irrigation.

L. R. TAFT.
Agricultural College, Mich.



TABLE OF CONTENTS-



Page
CHAPTER I.
The Forcing of Roses, ...•...!

CHAPTER II.
THE Carnation, ........ 26

CHAPTER III.
The Chrysanthemum, ....... 54

CHAPTER IV.
The Violet, ......... 77

CHAPTER V.
13UL,BS AND THEIR CULTURE, . ..... 88

CHAPTER VI.
Tuberous Begonias, ....... 103

CHAPTER VII.
Orchid Culture, . . . . . . , . IIG

CHAPTER VIII.
AZALEAS, ......... 131

CHAPTER IX.
Calceolarias, Cinerarias and primulas, .... 143

CHAPTER X.
Ferns, Smilax and Asparagus, ..... 153

CHAPTER XI.
Palms, pandanus and Arauoaria, ..... 162

CHAPTER XII.
Drac^nas and Cordylines, ...... 168

CHAPTER Xin.

Lettuce Forcing, ........ 182

CHAPTER XIV.
Cucumbers, Tomatoes and melons, .... 198

CHAPTER XV.

Mushroom Culture, ........ 211

CHAPTER XVI.

Asparagus and Rhubarb, ...... 226

CHAPTER XVII.
Radishes, Carrots, Beets and Beai>s, . . . .230

CHAPTER XVIII.
Grape Growing Under Glass, ..... 234

CHAPTER XIX.
Strawberry Growing under Glass, ..... 248

CHAPTER XX.
Fruit Trees under Glass, ...... 253

CHAPTER XXI.
Management of House Plants, ..... 258

vi



TABLE OF CONTEKTS. VU

Page

CHAPTER XXII.
The Growing of Bedding Plants, ..... 274

CHAPTER XXIII.
Pkopagation of Plants by Seeds and Cuttings, . . 287

CHAPTER XXIV.
Propagation by Layering, Grafting and Budding, . 300

CHAPTER XXV.
Insects of the Greenhouse, ...... 308

CHAPTER XXVI.
Diseases of Greenhouse Plants, ..... 324

CHAPTER XXVll.
Insecticides and their preparation, . . . .351

CHAPTER XXVIII.
Fungicides, their Preparation and Use, . . •

CHAPTER XXIX.

80IL, Manures and Watering, .....

CHAPTER XXX.
Fuel— Coal, Oil and Gas,



356
360
376



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.



Fig.

1. Pres. Carnot rose, . , ,

2. House of Bridesmaid roses,

3. Wire trellis for roses,

4. Hybrid roses pruned and tied down, .

5. Bed of hybrid roses in bud,
G. Types of carnation cuttings,

7. Carnation house, short span to south,

8. Carnation supports, ....

9. Carnations supported by chicken netting,

10. Cariuitions supported by meshes of cotton twine,

11. Carnations supported by wire lathing,

12. Daybreak carnation,

13. Mrs. Geo. M. Bradt carnation,

14. Chrysanthemums trained to stakes,

15. Chrysanthemums supported by wire and twine
IG. Chrysanthemum crown bud,

17. Chrysanthemum terminal bud,

18. Chrysanthemum, Eugene Dailledouze,

19. Chrysanthemum, ^Mayflower, .

20. Chrysaiithemum, Mrs. Fei'rin,

21. Chrysanthemum, lora, .

22. Narrow violet house, . . .

23. Hitchings violet house, .

24. Narrow violet house, improved, .

25. Single violet, Princess de Galles,

26. Box of Roman hyacinths, . . ,

27. Double Dutch hyacinths,

28. Improved hyacinth glass, . , .

29. Single early tulips, . . ,

30. Freesia refracta alba, . . .
.31. Lilium Harrisii, ....
.32. Forcing lily of the valley, . . ,

33. Cyclamen plant, ....

34. Gladiolus May, ....

35. House of tuberous begonias, . .

36. Single tuberous begonia, . . .

37. Double tuberous begonia,
.38. Gloxinia, .....

39. House of gloxinias,

40. Fancy caladium, ....

viii



Page
13
15

20
23
25
28
33
41
43
45
47
.50
.52
59
Gl
G4
G5
7''
73
74
75
78
79
81
87
89
91
91
92
94
96
97
100
102
104
105

lot;

110
111
114



LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS.



IX



Via.

41. Orel) ills ill bloom, . .

42. Cypripedium Spiceriauum, .

43. Cattleya triaiia^, . . .

44. Orchid baskets, ... .

45. Aerides Savageanum,

46. PhaUii^nopsis grandiflora,

47. Potting and cribbing orchids,

48. Azalea in compact form, . .

49. Azalea witli open head, .

50. Hydrangea Otaksa, .

51. Cytisus, . . . • .

52. Bench of lilacs,

53. Kalmia latifolia, .

54. Specimen calceolaria, . .

55. Cineraria hybrida, . .
5G. Single Chinese primrose, .

57. Machet mignonette, . .

58. Adiantiim Farleyense, . .

59. Boston fern, . . .

GO. Asparagus Sprengeri, . .

Gl. Asparagus house, .

G2. Fan p:ilm, ....

G3. Dwarf rattan palm,

G4. Variegated aspidistra,

G5. Group of anthuriums and alocasias

GG. Alocasia metallica,

G7. Aglaonema pictuni,

G8. Even-span lettuce house, .

G9. Lean-to lettuce house, .

70. Lettuce pot plant,

71. Pot plant ready for market, .

72. Interior of lean-to lettuce house, .

73. Lettuce packed for local market,

74. Cucumber house, interior, .

75. English forcing encumbers,

7G. Interior of tomato forcing house,

77. Growing mushrooms on greenhouse

78. Crop of mushrooms under a bench,

79. Brick spawn,

80. French mushroom spawn, .

81. New mushroom in a cold frame,

82. Black Hamburg grape,

83. Grape house in fruit,

84. Eye cutting of grape,

85. Short cutting of grape, .

86. Bench of strawberry plants,

87. The crop gathered,

88. Fruiting strawberry plants,

89. Pear tree in pot, .

90. Plum tree in fruit,

91. A window garden, . «
■92. A well arranged window box,



benches



Page
118
120
122
123
124
12G
127
132
134
135
137
140
142
144
145
147
151
155
15G
157
IGl
1G3
1G4
167
17G
178
179
183
185
187
189
190
193
200
204
207
210
212
218
219
224
238
240
246
246
250
251
251
254
255
260
270



LIST OF ILLIT8T RATIONS.



93. Epiphyllum Iruuealuui,

94. A coilection of cacti and aloes,

95. A house of pedigree violets, •

96. Showing condition of stem for cuttings

97. Soft cutting of coleus, .

98. Geranium cutting,

99. Cutting of Arbor Vitae, .

100. Long cutting of grape,

101. Tongue or whip grafting,

102. Cleft grafting, .

103. Side grafting,

104. Budding, ....

105. AVingless female aphis,

106. AVinged male aphis, .

107. Fuller's rose beetle,

108. Ked spider,

109. Thrips,

110. Mealy bug,

111. Fumigation of a violet house,

112. Rose spot ,

113. Spores of blacl<: spot,

114. Carnation rust,

115. Spores of carnation rust,

116. Spot disease of carnations,

117. Effect of spot on carnations,

118. Anthracnose of carnations,

119. Fairy ring spot of carnation,

120. Spores of fairy ring spot, .

121. Carnation leaf mold,

122. Botrytis or rot of carnations,

123. Bacteriosis of carnations,

124. Violet leaf spot,

125. Bermuda lily disease, .

126. Leaf blight of mignonette, .

127. The Kinney pump,

128. Crude oil burner,



• • *


rase

2><r)

286


• • *


292


cuttings.


293
294




296




298




299




302




303


» • *


304

306




309




310




311




312




313




314


• •


322
324


• • *


325
. . 329




330




332




333




334




335


• » •


335


• • •


336
336


• • •

• • •
« • *

• • •

• • *

• • •


337
339
343
346
366
377



GREENHOUSE MANAGEMENT.



CHAPTER I.

THE F0RC1N"G OF ROSES.

While other departments of floriculture have made
wonderful progress during the past ten years, in none of
them has it been as great as in the winter forcing of
roses, and to-day hundreds of large establishments are
almost entirely devoted to this work, while every small
florist has liis rose house, and the sale of cut blooms
generally equals the amount received from all other
flowers combined.

Although it is true that roses, to be successfully
grown, require careful attention, it is not true that
there is any wonderful secret that one must acquire in
order to grow them, and, while the inexperienced rose
grower cannot expect tlie highest success, it is hoped
that if the directions here given are carefully followed
many mistakes may be ])revented. The work of the
rose grower generally begins with the propagation and
growing of the plants, and therefore we will commence
with that operation and follow along with the various
steps as the season advances.

PROPAGATING THE PLANTS.

Rose plants for forcing purposes are generally grown
from cuttings of the new wood made any time from
November to February, but for most purposes the earlier

1



2 OREENHOirSE MANAGEMEXT.

(late is preferable. Tlic rule generally given for learn-
ing if the plants are in ])r()pei' condition to be nscd for
cuttings, i. e., when in bending a brancli tlie wood
snaps, does not hold for roses, as cuttings should not be
made until the buds in the axils of the leaves have be-
come firm and hard. Some consider that the lower
buds on a stem are in good condition when the flower
buds are ready to be cut, while others believe that the
best time for making the cuttings is when the buds
begin to show color. At any rate, the cuttings should
be made before the leaf buds begin to swell. The cut-
tings made as soon as the buds have formed and the
wood has lost its succulent nature, will root quicker, and
a much larger per cent of them will form roots, or
"strike," as it is called. If the variety is a new and
choice one, the blind shoots, or those that have not
formed flower buds, are often used for making cut-
tings. While it may be done occasionally without
marked injury, if persisted in the tendency will be
to develop plants that form few flowering stems,
and the results will not be satisfactory, sotthat the con-
tinued use of the blind shoots for cuttings is not to be
recommended.

When the stems have long internodes, and particu-
larly if it is a new sort, a cutting should be obtained
from every good bud, but those at the lower part of the
stem, and all at the upper portion that are to any ex-
tent soft and succulent, should be rejected. The cut-
tings of American Beauty, and other varieties with short
joints, should contain two or more buds. Cuttings
should be from one and one-half to three inches long,
with one bud near the top, at any rate, and with the
lower end cut off smoothly at right angles, with a sharp
knife. If the upper leaf is large, about one-half of it
should be cut away, and the other leaves, if any, should
be rubbed off.



THE FOKCING OF HOSES. 3

The cuttings should bo dropped into water to pre-
vent their drying out, and as soon as possible should be
placed in tlie propagating bed. This should contain
about four inches of clean, sharp sand of medium fine-
ness, and should have heating pipes beneath, to give bot-
tom heat. Set the cuttings in rows, about two inches
apart and three-fourths of an inch in the row, and press
the sand firmly about them. At once wet them down
thorouglily, and if the weather is clear and bright the
beds should be shaded during the middle of the day for
the first week. The propagating house should be kept
at a temperature, at night, of fifty-eight or sixty degrees,
with about ten degrees more of bottom heat. During the
day, it should be well ventilated to keep up the bottom
heat and thus promote root development, and to admit
fresh air, but a temperature ten degrees higher than at
night is desirable.

In about three or four weeks, with proper care,
every cutting should be rooted. The requirements for
success, as noted above, are, good cuttings, clean, sharp
sand, a proper temperature, shading when necessary,
and an occasional wetting down of the bed, in order
that the cuttings may not at any time become dry. If
the house is inclined to dry out, or if the weather is
bright, the cuttings as well as the walks should be si:>rin-
kled occasionally, and the ventilation should have care-
ful attention. It is best to use fresh sand for each batch
of cuttings.

POTTIXG AI^D CARE OF THE PLANETS.

When the roots are three-fourths of an inch long,
the cuttings should be potted off into two or two and
one-half inch pots, pressing the soil firmly. The best
soil for the potting of rose cuttings is made of equal
parts of leaf mold, or decayed })asture sods, and garden
loam, with a little cow manure and bone meal, and sand



4 GREENHOUSE MANAGEMENT.

in proportion to the heaviness of the soil. After being
potted the cuttings should be placed in a house with a
night temperature of a little less than sixty degrees.
They require the same care as other plants, careful
watering, with an occasional syringing to keep down the
red spider, proper ventilation, and an avoidance of drafts
and direct sunlight for a few days, being the main
things desired.

Unless tobacco stems are strewn on the beds, it will
be necessary, once or twice a week, to burn tobacco
stems in the house, or syringe them with tobacco water.
From the time the cuttings are potted off until they
have finished flowering and are ready to be thrown out,
or rested, they should be kept growing, every precaution
being taken to avoid a check, if the best results are de-
sired. Some, however, i)refer to grow the plants rapidly
until they are in four-inch pots, and then give them a
short rest. As soon as the roots have filled the pots,
and before the plants become pot-bound, shift to three
or three and one-half inch pots. By the last of April,
if they have had good care, the first batch will have
filled four-inch pots and will be strong enough to plant
in the beds for early flowering, while the others, as they
come on, can be repotted, and will soon be large enough
to be transferred to the beds. Only strong, well-grown
plants should be used, and if possible all should be
planted out by the flrst of July. By this early planting
not only can a large crop of blooms be secured during the
summer, when there is a good demand at a fair price, but
the plants will be so strong that they will be able to give
large crops during the fall and early winter, when they
are most needed. Planting some of the beds by the. first
of April, for summer use, will often l)e desirable.

SOIL FOR ROSE.-^.

While the different varieties will not always thrive
with the same kind of soil, it is generally admitted that,



THE FORCING OF ROSES. 5

at all events, a soil for roses should contain decomposed
pasture sods and cow manure. The sod should be ob-
tained during the previous summer from some old pas-
ture with a thick, fibrous sod, if possible, and should be
piled up with alternate layers of cow manure, using one
part of the manure to from four to six of the sods, ac-
cording to the character of each. The sods should be
cut just thick enough to remove the thick, fibrous por-
tion, and if from an average loam soil, neither very
heavy nor light, but with a good admixture of clay, the
compost prepared as above will be of a suitable charac-
ter for the rose benches, but if the sods come from a
sandy loam soil the addition of one part of clay to five
or six of the mixture will be desirable. On the other
hand, if the soil is inclined to be heavy, an equal quan-
tity of sand should certainly be added. AVhile consider-
able clay is desirable in soil for roses, tliere is danger of
its being too heavy, as, even in shallow benches, if the
soil at any time becomes too wet, particularly in the fall
before the fires are started, or during a cloudy period in
the winter, it will not only be longer in drying out than
a lighter soil, bub '^ black spot" and other diseases will
be much more likely to follow.

Early in the spring the compost pile should be
worked over and the coarser sods broken np. After
lying in the pile for two or three weeks more it will be
ready to place on the benches. When the houses are
long, it will be convenient to have o])enings in the side
walls, through which the soil can be thrown upon the
benches, and if there are side ventilators this can be
readily done. If it is not feasible to have openings in
the sides of the houses, it will be a great convenience if
a small car can be run along the edges of the benches.
As an entire chapter was devoted to "Rose Houses" in
the companion volume, *^ Greenhouse Construction," in
which the form and width of house best adapted to the



6 GEEENHOUSE MANAGEMENT.

crop was discussed at length, it is not thought necessary
to devote space to it here. By reference to the other
book, full information regarding these points, and upon
such important matters as the pitch for the roof, ar-
rangement of the ventilators, the method of estimating
the amount of heating pipe required and the best way of
arranging it, will be obtained.

SOLID BEDS VERSUS RAISED BENCHES.

For many years solid beds were almost universally
used for growing roses and similar plants. They admit
of supi^lyiug a full amount of plant food, but while they
lessen the danger of injury from neglect in watering,
they frequently do great harm if the ^ilants are over-
watered, particularly if the sun does not show itself for
a number of days, as they are a long time in drying out.
For this reason they fell into disrepute, and were
replaced, in most establishments, by shallow raised
benches, as it was found that roses grown upon them, in
four or five inches of soil, were less likely to receive a
check during the dull days of early winter, when they
are most in demand and bring the best prices. Upon
solid beds, however, with good drainage, large crops are
secured as the bright, sunny days of spring come on,
and, what is of much imi)ortance, the plants can be
grown for two or more years before they are thrown out,
while upon shallow benches it is generally advisable to
renew the plants each year.

A method has now come into use that provides both
for the thorough drainage and the aeration of the soil,
as well as warming it up and drying it out. The solid
beds are generally about seven feet wide, with two beds
and three walks in a house twenty feet in width. The
drainage is ])rovided, in some cases, by means of com-
mon drain tile laid across the beds at intervals of fi'om
one to three feet, while in others a foot or more in depth



THE FOKCIXG OF ROSES. 7

of stones, or broken brick, is placed in tlie bottom and
covered with eigiit inches of soik A few of our most
successful growers secure bottom heat by running one
or more steam pipes lengthwise of the beds at about the
center of the layer of stones ; the heat distributes itself
tlirough the bed, and is of marked advantage in wet,
dull weather, in drying out the surplus water and warm-
ing up the soil. Another favorite arrangement is to
have three beds, each five feet wide, and four walks, in a
house twenty-two feet wide. These beds have all of the
advantages of the old solid bed, with none of the disad-
vantages, and are equally well adapted to carnations,
violets, lettuce and other crops. The watering of the
plants by what is known as sub-irrigation has many ad-
vantages, and is treated in another chapter.

PLAi^TING THE HOUSES.

Before the beds are filled with soil, ample drainage
facilities should be provided, and if raised, wooden
benches are used there should be cracks of nearly one
inch between the bottom boards, which should prefer-
ably not be more than six inches wide. When tile bot-
toms are used the cracks can be somewhat smaller. To
prevent the soil from falling through the cracks, or
from filling up the openings between the stones in the
solid beds, it is well to first put down a layer of sods
with the grass side down, and upon these four or five
inches of the prepared soil for a raised bench, or seven
or eight for a solid bed, should be placed. This should
be leveled off and firmly j^acked down.

The beds are now ready for planting, and this
should not be long delayed, as the thin layer of soil will



Online LibraryMyron A HuntHow to grow cut flowers. A practical treatise on the cultivation of the rose, carnation, chrysanthemum, violet, and other winter flowering plants. Also greenhouse construction .. → online text (page 1 of 25)