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Gardening Notes.

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Gardening Notes. [If any reader who is in a difficulty with refer- ence to his garden will write directly to the address given beneath, his questions will all be answered, free of charge, in full detail, and by return of post.—Ed.] THE BEST LAWN PLANTS. Cynosurus CristiLtus (Civ-sted Dogstail).- Perennial, growing in smaJl tufts, occasionally rooting at the nodes of the stems, and capable of forming a complete sward if sown thickly. This compact, short-foliaged grass grows well every- where excepting in very wet or sour soils and loose sands, and possesses the valuable charac- teristic of retaining its green colour for a very long time during periods of drought. It is an exceedingly valuable plant for lawns and cricket grounds. Festucaovina, var. duriuscula (Hard Fescue). —Perennial, of tufted grow th. Hajxl Fescue is a very valuable d-warf-growing grass for parks and recreation grounds, as it flourishes in almost all soils and situations, resists drought better than many grasses, endures shade, and retains its verdure during the most. severe winter weather. Festuca ovina tereu-ifolia (Fine-leaved Sheep's Fescu,e).-Perennial, of densely tufted growth. Owing to its habit, this very fine-foliaged grass is only suita-ble for sowing with other species. In shady places it maintains its dark green wleur during very hot and dry weather, and its deep root-system enables it to thrive in ?nd,- and stony soils where most species would die out. Festuca rubra (Bed Fescue).—Perennial, with creeping stems which often extend to a consider- able length. This grass thrives in dry, sandy ground, where it usually remains green when other species would be burned up. Lolium perenne (Perennial Rye-grass), Too- good's Selec-ted Dwarf.-—Perennial, complete sward. Dwarf strains of Perennial Rye-grass are sometimes used in the growing in compound tufts which make a formation of lawns, except- ing on dry and inferior soils, from whence they die out after the second season. Toogood's Selected Dwarf is by far the best kind for lawns and cricket grounds Poa pratensis (Smooth-stalked Meadow-grass). -Perennial, with veiry long underground sto- lons, forming tufts and so completely covering the surface of the ground. Smooth-stalked Meadow-grass re,sitsthe greatest extremes of drought and cold, luxuriates in warm, loose buxta, rich in humus, and grows well in all soils excepting those nfcich are very stiff, wet, or sour. It is very generally sown alone for the formation of lawns in America. Poo. trivialis (Rough-stalked Meadow-grass). —Enduring perennial, producing creeping and rooting branches along the surface of the ground and forming a very close sward. This grass vege- tates tolerably early in spring, succeeds best in rich, moist soils generally, luxuriates in the shade, and is unsuitable for dry and light lands or sunny 'situations. It resists cold well as a rule, but it is soon stunted and scorched by drought. Poa nemoralis (Wood Meadow-grass).—Peren- nial, of creeping tendency. The special value of this early, cktse-growing, drought-resisting, and perpetually green grass lies in its suitability for growing under trees. Trifolium repens (White or Dutch Clover).— Perennial, with creeping stems which produce surface roots at the nodes. This dwarf-growing clover resists drought well owing to the length of its central tap-root, is destroyed by stagnant water, and vegetates so luxuriantly in warm, moist situations in moderately firm imarls, clays and loams tha/fc its creeping stems .sometimes do injury by suppressing grasses. Trifolium filiforme (Yellow Suckling Olover). -Annual, occasionally biennial, with procum- bent stems. This species, which seeds itself down, is adapted for use with other plants in lawns and pleasure grounds on light land. ADVANTAGES OF LAWN MIXTURES. I Judiciously composed mixtures of lawn plants suppress weeds by more completely occupying we ground, utilise the soil more pi-ofitably and fully, and are less likely to fail under adverse conditions than any one species sown alone. On the other hand, a lawn consisting of one species only, such as Poa pratensis, is always much more uniform in texture and colour. THE SELECTION OF LAWN PLANTS. The object in selecting lawn-plants should be the formation of a permanent, complete, and close-growing .sward. Mixtures of lawn seeds should contain only those species which may reasonably be expected to thrive under the pro posed conditions of soil and climate, since most plants die out altogether amongst uncongenial surroundings. Some finely-growing, simply- tufted grasses are incapable of forming a com- plete covering for the ground, and to prevent indigenous weeds springingup between, amd pos- sibly suppressing them, suitable proportions of creeping or stoloniferou s plants must be added to farm bottom-herbage and occupy every vacant space. Clovers retain their verdure in hot ,summer weather when most grasses are scorched and browned, but they partially disappear in winter. As their foliage does not wear so well as that of good grasses, retains water longer, and is slippery after rain, clovers should be excluded from tennis lawns, bowling greens, etc., unless the soil is particularly susceptible to scorching under a..hot sun. The question is, however, a personal 6ne, and depends on the taste and wishes of the owner of the lawn. PREPARATORY MANURINC FOR LAWNS. Necessity gf Manure.-Since the nutritive elements of top-dressings applied to established lawns are almost wholly absorbed by the surface layers of soil, it is exceedingly difficult to supply fertilisers to lower depths when the sward is once formed, and as luxuriant herbage cannot be expected yeakr after year without liberal applica- tions of manure, sufficient should be applied when the land is prepared to last the lower layers for a long period. Manure to Use.—Considering both the chemi- cal constitution and the mechanical structure of ordinary soils, good farmyard manure produces and preserves the physical conditions most fa- a enable t) the formation of permanent lawns. For heavy lands, long, straw-containing quali- ties are to be desired, to keep the texture of the soil as open as possible, while light and loose lands require very liberal dressings of shorter, decayed manure to compact and fill them with humus, so making them more retentive of mois- ture. Though artificial manures must never be re- garded as substitutes for dung, but merely as useful accessories to be employed in conjunction with it, cases do sometimes occur when it is practically impossible to obtain farmyard manure. Under meh circumstances from .5 to 10 cwts. per acre of finely-ground bones, with 2 cwts. of basic slag, on medium, peaty, and heavy lands, constitute a useful and lasting fer- tiliser. Method of Application.— Manuring should be completed as early as possible, iso that the land may become somewhat enridhed before seed time. For spring sowings the best method is to apply the manure immediately before the land is ploughed and laid up rough for the winter, ex- cepting for light soils, which are most profitably manured and prepared in spring. E. Kemp Toogood, F.L.S., F.R.Met.S., pro Toogood and Sons, The King's Seedsmen, Southampton.

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