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there form the stratum for the roots, covering it down with a foot or nine inches of the common soil.
This composition or principle of forming borders, will prove in every respect conformable to the nature and supply of the food of plants, and their consequent growth, as before explained; and if it be desirable to force the trees to a luxurious growth, they may be supplied with manure in any quantity; by placing it on the surface of the border, whence it will be carried within reach of the roots, in its proper state by water, and the injurious effect of a too great detention of moisture consequent on placing dung in contact with the roots, be avoided; and by forming borders shallow, and placing the roots at a short distance from the surface, trees may be kept fruitful, and within a very narrow space.
PLANTING AND TRAINING THE PEACH.
In planting trees, the root or stem should be pressed
will serve as directions for the choice of trees; and if a plant be raised of a proper
shape, and with the root entire, it will not require to be headed back.
When plants are raised in pots, the roots will, of course, be intermixed and entangled; but if they are carefully turned out of the pot, and the earth shaken from them, the roots may readily be separated, and drawn out free and even.*
Should any root be broken, it iust be cut off at the broken part; and when plants have their roots much diminished, by being lacerated and broken in taking up, or otherwise, or should the roots be injured, or a large portion destroyed by too long exposure, when taken out of the earth, the plant should be headed back to those buds, which are best placed near the root, to cause them to throw out branches that will form the figure required, or the foundation of the future tree. When plants are raised in pots, they may be
, transplanted at any season; but when they are raised in beds or borders, they should be taken up in the month of November ; and if the places, where they are to be planted, are not then ready to receive them, they may again be laid in the ground, and the roots lightly covered : after this, they may be removed, and planted, at any convenient time during the winter, or early in the spring; for, as in taking up, some of the roots will
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* A good method of disentangling the roots is, to place the whole, earth and all, as it comes out of the pot, into a tub of water, and thus wash out the earth; the roots may then be arranged without injury.
probably be torn, the wounds will require some time to cicatrize or heal, which must take place before fresh roots can be formed ; and thus time will be saved, and the tree better prepared for the spring.
It is well known that the roots of a tree extend and increase annually, and, in proportion, the branches are also extended; if, therefore, the branches are found to exceed the space allotted, and to be too luxuriant to bear fruit, it must not be expected that the cutting those off will prevent the same excess the following season, and when the means of such produce are increased.
In planting, we must either adapt the soil to the space allotted to each tree, or allow each tree a space proportioned to the soil.
A tree should not be cut back but from its beginning; if, therefore, a small space only can be allowed for the trunk or stem, and branches, the soil must be reduced accordingly; and when the soil is rich, and the space ample, a tree should be allowed a space equal to its utmost growth.
The peach tree, in rich and well watered borders, will fill sixteen feet square of walling ; but Hitt calculates that twelve feet square is as much as a dwarf peach or nectarine tree will annually cover with bearing wood; and in the borders I have described, this will be found pretty correct.
Those trees, therefore, which are intended to be trained with two stems, and planted in such a soil, should be planted twelve feet apart, if against
walls of twelve feet high, and if lower, at a proportionate distance; but if against walls of a less height than eight feet, this plan of training is not so well adapted as the simple horizontal method, which will be explained, and is represented by plate 2. *
A tree being obtained, presenting two branches of the last year's growth, as represented by fig. A. plate 1., and which form the foundation of the future tree, and are called stems, let them be fixed in the position represented by figure B., which it will be observed is placed more perpendicular the first year than afterwards; and this is done that the whole supply of the sap may go to the upper ends of the stems; and all the buds that are not three feet above the lower end being rubbed off, the course of sap will be more regular and fixed, which will then be less inclined to throw out shoots below, and where they are not wanted, than when fixed more horizontally.
If the stems are four feet long, or more, let them be fixed to the wall, near a bud, on the outer side, which is about three feet and a half from the end or fork (see a. figure B.), and then turn the top inwards to a curve or angle of about forty-five degrees; this will place the bud a. in a position nearly as vertical as the end of the stem, and it
* On further experience, I find this method is in no respect equal to that shewn by figures 1, 2, 3, 4. plate 1.; for in the plan, figures 2, 3, 4. plate 2., the new horizontals will each