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Family Notices


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GARDENING OPERATIONS FOR THE WEEK. (From the Gardener's Magazine.) [An excellent weekly journal, containing much valuaUfi information for amateur and professional gardeners.] KITCHEN GABBED- So many of the vegetable crops sown last month and through tbe early part of this are now up and in the same stage, that unltss the u^most amount of activity is exercised some will suffer.. Permanent crops, like Turnips, Carrots, and Onions mutt be thinned out before the young plants become crowded and spoiled, and Lettuce, Cabbage, and Cauliflowers must be transplanted directly they are big enough, for they eufferless than when allowed to get large and drawn tip. Celery plants must have plenty of air, excepting a few that may be pushed on to come in very early. The latest lot will just be ready for pricking out from the Beed-pacs. As this batch is for the aain crop, it must not be neglected, but be lprown on without a single check in any way. The first time that can be spared may be profitably in getting the trenches ready for the earliest. between the rows of growing crops must be stirred with the hoe to win keep down weeds, which are now springing ut> plenti- fully on all sides. Tomatoes and vegetable Marrows can be planted out if a hand-light can be spared for their protection otherwise they are/>e?J 111 the frames for the present. Sow dwarf French -Beans for main crop, but the Scarlet Runners must not be sown for another fortnight. A small sowing of Hindive may be made with the chance of getting a few early. They soon bolt; therefore it is best to sow the seed where the plants are to remain, and in rich soil. Earth up and stick peas as they come on, as it helps to keep the sparrows off for a short time. FRUIT GARDEX. Fruit trees protected with blinds of canvas or tiffany must have air, which can be accomplished by rolling the blinds up during the day, and leaving them up in the night, provided there is a certainty of there being no frost before morning. The weathercock must give the cue. Orchard.Houae.-Trees in pots must have plenty of water and plenty of air. A good breeze through the house will do them good, aDd it will be ahelp to shut up with a little sun-heat. If this house la now over- crowded with all sorts of odds and ends that have been brought in through the overcrowded, state of other houses, say at once farewell to the fruit crop. The crowding of fruit-houses with things that have no right to a place in them is a common cause of failure. Renew the top-dretsing now, and let it be good. Trees in borders must have plenty of water. FLOWER GARDEN. Thin out all the patches of annuals sown out of doors, and plant out of frames such as are sufficiently hardy and strong enough to bear the shift. Also plant out hardy edging plants like Veronica incana and the Cerastiums. It will lessen the labour when the grand rush comes, and also give the edging time to get nicely established before the season is too far advanced. Herbaceous plants that have been struck from stools placed in heat should be hardened off quickly and turned out. It will give them an opportunity to flower in a creditable manner this season. This is impossible when they are kept starving in small pots until the middle of the summer, as is generally the case. The whole of the beds on graM should have the edging-iron run round them, and those unoccupied turned op, and left moderately rough. If the weather sets in dry, water freely beds filled with Pinks, Picotees, and Car- nations intended for exhibition, and mulch the beds with rotten manure. This is a better way than apply- ing strong doses of manure-water, which frequently does more harm than good, by destroying the purity and the sharpness of the markings of the flower. FORCING. Pittn.-It is a very easy matter to do harm in using manureiwater with these plants. Pines are not such gross feeders as grapes, though fruiters are benefitted by the application of weak doses, as the fruit is swel- ling guano-water is the best for these. Four ounces of guano and a double handful of soot to every six gallons of water is quite strong enough. The bottom-heat must not be allowed to decline at this stage in any of the houses; if the tan-bed was prepared in the way sug- gested by us at the general potting, they will be all right yet. Where the bottom-heat is maintained en- tirely by fire-heat, it is a very common practice to It:t the heat decline in the bed now that theeun has gained power. The fires ought to be kept going-steadily, of course—and the circulation in the top pipes stopped; bottom-heat is of more consequence now than in the middle of the winter. Always use water the same temperature as that of the house in which the plants are growing, both for the roots and syringing. Vines.—Where the grapes are changing colour give plenty of air, and leave the top ventilators open a little way during the night. It is impossible to have well- ccloured or richly-flavoured fruit if the atmosphere is kept|closeand stagnant. Keep the atmosphere rather dry to prevent "shanking." Muscats must have a liberal temperature now they are setting. It is a mistake to maintain a parched atmosphere at this stage sprinkle the fl ior morning and afternoon, but withhold the syringe for the present. Shift on young vines in pots. Figs.-In the early house the fruit will be faat reach- ing maturity, and the syringing must be either par- tially or wholly withheld; if the fruit has a lot of water dashed over them, the flavour will be poor. A moderate degree of humidity must, however, be main- tained in the house, or the foliage will be overrun with red-spider, and the chances of the second and third crops considerably reduced. Cherries and Plums. -The fruit of the former will be now changing colour fast in the early house. Ventilate freely, and see that there is nothing to obstruct the light. Stop any good shoots of either of these fruits, and dip the points of shoots that are infested with black-fly in tobacco-water. Train the young growth so that the fruit is exposed fully to the light and air. Cucumber,Sow now for planting in the open air. The most certain way to ensure success is to sow moderately early, and grow the plants into bushy specimens in nine-inch pots by the time they can be planted out. PLANT-HOUSES. Conservatory. — The early-flowering Pelargoniums will be doing good service here, now that the Cyclamens, Cinerarias, and Primulas are mostly over. A very common failing here is to exert all the energies m forcing plants for an early display, ard then have little or nothing between that and the time the ordinary Pelargoniums turn in. The principal display ought to consist now of Roses which have been brought on steadily; these will beat in freshness and beauty all that are grown entirely in the open air, supposing tht-m to have the right treatment. Greenhouse.—Any of the Azaleas which are in bad condition, or grown out of si ape, muat be dealt with soon or the season will be lost. In the first place, prune them hard back, and set the pots on a moderate bottom-heat, or, if not too warm, plunge the pots to about half their depth, and keep them well syringed with tepid water. The buds will soon Dush, and after they get about an inch in length repot them. Take them out of the pots, reduce the ball considerably, and shift into a size larger or return to the same size again. Use good fibrous loam and peat with plenty of sand; pot firm, and return to the bottom-heat acain, and treat as before until they are nicely established. Plants in good health will only need repotting and tying into shape. Camellias started early must not be kept too hot, and should have a moderate degree of air to keep the wood short-jointed and firm. Soft-wooded stuff must have attention, and that not in bloom fumigated freely directly any aphides make their appearance for it is no use to let them spoil the plants and then fumigate. Clear the greenhouse of all kinds of bed- ding stuff for if kept here up to the time for planting out it will be of little use to expect them to do much good. Sow seed of Primulas and Cinerarias for autumn flowering a warm corner of the greenhouse will be sufficient. Cover the seed-pans with a piece of glass to prevent the surface soil drying too quickly. FRAMES. Instead of nipping off the flower-buds of Centaurea ragusina and C. gymnocarpa, which are now showing freely on old plants, let them expand, and give plenty of air whilst they are in flower. Gather the seed directly it is ripe, and sow in the same way as that of any other half-hardy plant. The seed vegetates very quickly, and the young plants require potting off before they get too much crowded. Any cool place out of doors will do for them until late in the autumn, and from then until spring cold-frame protection. The plants are equal to any raised from cuttings, and it will do away with a world of trouble attached to their pro- pagation. Autumn-struck plants are difficult to get, and spring-struck, which are comparatively easy to ob- tain in the hands of a good propagator, are hardly ever large enough to plant out for producing an immediate effect.