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diirbcnmg. t [f any reader who is in difficulty with reference j to his garden, will write direct to the ad- dress given beneath, his queries will be an. iiwered, free of charge, and by return of post -EDITOR). 1 Some correspondents omit to add their names, i or merely end with inibials. In these cases it is obviously impossible to reply.—E.K.T. FORCING STRAWBERRIES. GENERAL REMARKS. Strawberries are extensively forced for the market in large gardens, while out of season crops are within reach of every possessor of in ordinary greenhouse. VARIETIES. Such etrly kinds as Vicomtese H. de Thury and Keen's Seedling are best adapted for forced culture. By re potting the former after forcing, and standing the plants in a bed of ashes in the open, an autumn crop of fruit maybe ripened under glass, but this is unnecessary where the large fruited Perpetual St. Joseph variety is cultivated. THE SOIL. An excellent compost is prepared by mixing two parts of moist, rather adhesive, loam, with one of leaf mould, thoroughly rotted manure, or bonemeal. THE TEMPERATURE. A temperature of from 40 degrees to 45 degrees at night, and 45 to 50 degrees by day, must not be exceeded until flowering is well over, when it is essential to maintain a free circulation of air during the blossoming period, but draughts must be excluded. THE LIGHT. Full exposure to sun and light is highly bene- ficial. THE WATER SUPPLY. Copious watering and syringing are neces- sary, especially while the fruits are swelling, except during the whole time of flowering and after the fruits have commenced changing colour, when the atmosphere must be kept rather dry. THE PLANTS. The earliest and strongest runners of one or two year old plants are layered singly into clean 60-s pots of well drained, firmly pressed down loam, the young plants being detached when thoroughly rooted, stood in the open for a day or two, and then re-potted firmly in well. drained six inch fruiting pots, a piece of turf being placed over the drainage in the bottom of each. After standing in the shade for a few days, to become established, the plants are ex- posed to the full sunlight on a bed of ashes or coarse gravel through which worms cannot penetrate,and copiously watered until plunged, before the advent of severe frost, into dry leaves resting on ashes in cold frames or pits whence frost is excluded by coverings of light litter, and to which abundant air is admitted by the removal of lights or ashes during mild weather. In default of better storage, the pots may be plunged, resting on their sides with the plants outwards, in ashes under a south wall, where protective litter and mats can be pro- vided when necessary. The labour of repotting is obviated by layering directly into the fruit- ing pots. On the strength of the roots forced depend very largely the magnitude and quality of the crop. FORCING. The first batch of well-ripened plant are started during December or early January. When a dozen or so of the first and strongest flowers are surely set, the remaining blossoms may be pinched off. The beds and shelves for strawberries should, of course, be placed as near to the glass as possible. MAJNUfimCr. A little good artificial manure or an applica- tion of weak liquid manure is highly benefical weekly from the time the fruits commence to swell until the first signs of colour appear, when manuring must be discontinued. GATHERING. It is an excellent plan to move the plants to a cool, well ventilated house when the most forward fruits are nearly ripe.




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