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Cycling Notes. II



--Farmer's Column.




HINTS FOR ALLOTMENT HOLDERS. A CHRISTMAS TASK. By SPADE-WORKER. A profitable task for the allotment holder at Christmas time is to consider the plan of cropping for the next season, and to make a list of the varieties of vegetables he in- tends to grow. The best results cannot be obtained by those who purchase their sup- plies in a haphazard fashion. It always pays to obtain seeds from a first-class firm of seedsmen, for one can then rely upon getting a good strain. "Strain" counts for a good deal in vegetable eeeds; it is possible to have good and bad strains of the best- known varieties, for the latter deteriorate if the work of selection is not carefully per- formed season after season. That is why it pays to buy the best seeds. NEXT YEAR'S POTATOES. I notice that firms who deal in seed pota- toes are now paying increased attention to those varieties which are resistent to wart disease or black scab. That seems to me to be a very wise move, for this incurable disease has now spread throughout so many areas that one cannot be sure that one's own neighbourhood will be free another season, and it is as well to be on the safe «ide antT"lo plant immune varieties. Some of the latter are just as good as the best of the susceptible varieties, and one may as well grow them in preference to the latter. Among first early varieties there are such sterling potatoes as Resistant Snowdrop, Edaell Blue (for those who like a coloured potato), Witch Hill Early, and Arran Rose, a new variety that is we'll epoken of. That old favourite, Sharpe's Express, is unfortu- nately not immune to wart disease, but of course those whose allotments are not in a scheduled area may plant it if they wish to do so. There are some splendid immune potatoes among the second earlies. euch for example as Great Scot, The Ally, Burnhouse Beauty, and the new Arran Comrade. That great favourite British Queen is, alas! not among the immune potatoes, but it is such an excellent variety that those who are not restricted in their choice will no doubt wish to include it. Kerr's Pink. Tinwald Per- fection, Abundaflce, and Langworthy are some of the best main crop immune varie- ties. The popular coloured potato, King Edward, is not immune, neither ií" Arran Chief, another well-known and widely-grown variety. I would strongly urge upon all allotment holders to order their seed potatoes without delay, and as soon as they are received they should be set up in shallow boxes to sprout. That is one of the chief aids to success. With reference to other varieties of vege- tables, &uch for example as peas, beans, tomatoes, sprouts, etc., I should be glad to hear from readers who have discovered any particularly good varieties. PRIZEWINNING HINTS. A prize of "The Garden: How to Make it Pav is won by Mr. W. Chew, for this ex- cellent hint: Try the following plan for obtaining early lettuce, and preparing the ground for celery at the same time. Growing Lettuce and Celery. Early in Fcoi-uarv wn a trench lift, wide and lit. 6in. deøp, banki,ng up the earth on each side. Fork tho bottom, it.ii;cc er with a 6in. layer of manure and decayed leaves, placing 3in. of soil on them. Sow some "All the Year Round lettuce seed in a frame or box covered with glass, and they will he ready to transplant in the trench early in March. When planting, arrange in two rows, 1ft. apart (as shown by circles in sketch). When the celery plants are bought they can be placed in positions A, B, C, D, E. etc. The lettuce will be ready for use when the celery is planted, or very soon after. THE VALUE OF ASHES. Thero is a little manurial value in coal Ashes if the report of an American investi- gator is to believed, but in any case, whether that is true or not, I am sure that the judicious use of fine coal ashes ia of value on heavy land. Any part of the allotment which is vacant and thrown up roughly for the winter, will derive consider- able benefit if fine ashas are iscatwed on from time to time. I would not use them on light land, but they certainlv do help in making clayey ground workable and in draining it. It is not generally known how useful ashes are for keeping away slugs from special plants or seedlingw. Place i, ring of this material round the plants, and slugs will rarely pass it. PRUNING RASPBERRIES. Unless raspberry canes aTe properly pruned they form a thicket in the course of a. few years, and the fruit is inferior in quality and less in quantity than from a properly tended plantation. It is a good plan at this season to look over the pants, and to cut out all canes or ;-tenis except those of the past summer's growth; these must not be interfered with, because they will bear next year's crop. But it some- times happens that even these new canes are too numerous, and it is bad policy to allow them to become crowded. Not more than hqdf a dozen or so should be left at each clump. Unless the plants are securely sup- ported it is advisable to shorten the øaneJ; by ten inches or so. PRIZE COMPETITION FOR ALLOT- MENT HOLDERS. Every week two prizes are offered for the best allotment hint or recipe. The prizes consist of useful gardening books. All en- tries for this competition must be addressed "Spadeworker," care of Editor of this paper. ANSWERS TO CORRESPONDENTS. L. L.âIf the grass has died, soot will do n" good. You must fork up the bare patches, add fresh soil, and sow grass seed 11 in spring. Cecilia.âStrawberries arc best planted in August or September. They may be planted in March for fruiting the following year. Cherry trees as a rule require little pruning; it is carried out similarly to the pruning of plum trees. E. S. K.âYou cannot grow King Edward 11 potato in your district. Try Kerr's Pink. I "Spadeworker" is open to give practical advice, free of charge, to readers of this paper. Replies will be sent by poet if a stamped addressed envelope is enclosed. Address your inquiries to "Spadeworker" care of Editor.


De-Control and' 'Cheaper Food."


Old Time Sport.

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