« ForrigeFortsett »
TO THE KING.
It is now upwards of seventeen years since Your Majesty did me. the honour to appoint me Your Gardener at Kensington and St. James's ; during which time I have made a great variety of experiments on Fruit and Forest Trees, and introduced the mode of Pruning and Training recommended in the following Treatise.
Your Majesty has, at different times, graciously condescended to examine the process, and been pleased to express Your approbation of the Improvements in such favourable terms, as have caused my heart to overflow with unspeakable pleasure.
Such encouragement from my Royal Master has stimulated me to proceed with so much alacrity
and perseverance, as to overcome every difficulty that opposed me, and to bring the subjects treated of in this Volume to such a state of perfection as will, I flatter myself, in some measure render it worthy of Your Majesty's Patronage.
Permit me then, Sire, with the most profound humility to lay this Work at Your Majesty's feet; and thus publickly to acknowledge my gratitude to the best of Sovereigns, and the best of Masters, for the innumerable blessings which under Him I enjoy, both as a Subject and a Servant.
That Your Majesty may long live to patronize the Arts and Sciences, and to reign over a loyal, brave, and happy People, is the daily prayer of
And most devoted
To the many Publications that have appeared on the Management of Fruit and Forest Trees, it may be thought superfluous to add; and, indeed, so little am I accustomed to the practice of writing, that I feel no small degree of reluctance in offering any thing to public inspection ; but an entire conviction of the advantages to be derived from the observations and directions contained in the following pages, joined to the importunity of many
of the most competent judges, has determined me to make my method of pruning and training, and the success attending it, as public as possible.
Having long observed the scanty crops both on wall and standard trees that have followed the usual mode of pruning and training, I was led to make many experiments, in order to difcover, if it were possible, a more fuccessful method. Nor have iny endeavours been in vain; for, after following a new mode for several years, I can with pleasure affirm, that the quantity of fruit has been remarkably increased, and the quality greatly improved.
I have in the following pages stated many facts, to evince the utility of the Composition recommended, and to induce others to make a fair trial, which may be done at a very trifling expence.
I only request of those who entertain any doubts, that they will make choice of two trees of the same kind, as near as may be in the same state of health or decay, and having equal advantages of soil and situation ; let the dead, decayed, and injured parts be
cut out; then to one of the trees apply the Composition as directed in this Treatise, and leave the other to Nature : if proper attention be paid to the former, no great length of time will be necessary to thew which method ought to be pursued in future.
I hope the candid reader will pardon me for dwelling a little on this subject. It has been said, that there is nothing new either in the Composition or its application. It is certainly true, that Compositions of various kinds have been tried; but no one has been attended with such great success as that which is described in the following pages: indeed, they were generally made up in a Novenly manner, and applied without properly preparing the trees; fo that little good could have been expected, even if the Composition had consisted of proper materials. In these particulars I am persuaded, that every impartial person will acknowledge that I have made great improvement. Former Compolitions have been made up of loam and cow or horse-dung, of bees-wax, pitch, tar, chalk, rosin mixed with grease, gums, &c. It is granted, that such as these may sometimes be of use, but not in general; mest of them being liable to become hard, and to crack and peel off. I have tried them all, with but very little fuccefs.' I have also tried a Composition of tarras (which is used as a cement for building under water): this also cracked and peeled off after it became hard. Some of these compositions become so hard, that, instead of giving way to the new bark as it is produced, they cut and tear it, to the great injury of the tree.
The Composition which I recommend is not liable to these inconveniences; it possesses an absorbent and adhesive quality, and is moreover of such a nature as not in the least to hurt the new and tender bark; for it easily gives way to it and to the new wood as they advance. On applying it to trees which contain a strong acid, such as Oaks, Apple-trees, Apricots, &c. when in