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will in consequence obtain a large share of sap at the bud b. on the inner side; and about six inches distance fix the stem again, and turn it on the same curve outwards (see b. b. figure B.), and let this be continued from side to side, forming a serpentine line as the tree advances to its utmost height. See figures 1, 2, 3, 4.
By these means the side branches or horizontals (on the principles before explained) will obtain an equal share of sap, and be continued to fill the space allotted, regularly up the stem, with equal luxuriance.
As peach or nectarine trees bear their fruit on shoots of the last year, or one year old, of a moderate strength, these side branches, by being fixed in a horizontal position, will constantly furnish such ; and as the sap will naturally flow into the buds on their upper sides, each will have its regularly allotted space, and which may be kept uniformly covered with bearing-wood; and by shortening, cutting out, and fixing these in a proper position, the bearing-wood will be regularly and annually renewed.
If the branches of a plant intended for stems are not long enough to produce buds at the distance stated, they must remain nearly perpendicular until they are so, and before they are curved ; when they are of sufficient length, all the buds being rubbed off, except three on each stem, as marked a.b. figure B., each of these will form a shoot of three or four feet long the following year,
and the second year, in October ; the whole should be fixed in the position represented by figure 1., and the stems brought down to an angle of about 30; it must be observed, that if the horizontal branches were brought down to a precise flat horizontal position from the stem, they would be furnished with branches for bearers of very unequal strength, for the bud nearest the stem offering the first vertical channel, would take the greatest share of sap, and be too gross to bear fruit, and from being thus robbed, the other branches would diminish towards the point, and be too diminutive and weak to bear fruit; to prevent this inequality, and at the same time to give the bearer next the stem sufficient strength to take place of and renew the horizontal when required, the end of the horizontal next the stem is first fixed sufficiently elevated to enable the first buds to draw the necessary portion of sap, to form a branch strong enough for a new horizontal, and then sufficiently depressed, or laid horizontal, to occasion an equal division of the remainder of the sap amongst the other bearers, and to furnish all those of nearly the same strength to the point : and this is done by forming a curve, rising from a horizontal position to 30 or 40 degrees elevation, as represented.
In the spring all the buds on the stems must be rubbed off, except those marked b. b. b.; these will then form the basis of the bearers or horizontals, which will be placed from twelve to fifteen inches apart.
All wood buds must also be taken off from the horizontals, except those which grow on the upper sides, and as these will then receive the whole of the sap, drawn by the horizontal, they will form bearers of proper strength and length, and when nailed as represented, will fill the spaces between the horizontals with regularity.
It must be observed, that the disbudding should not be performed till the buds are grown a quarter or half an inch, which will generally be by the end of April or beginning of May.
Proceeding thus, the tree will be like the figure 2. the second winter, figure 3. the third, and figure 4. the fourth winter; and the following summer the bearers will throw out young wood, as well as produce fruit, which may be regulated so that the old
be taken out the following winter, and the young wood brought down to fill its place.
Should the horizontals at any time be destroyed, or the buds or branches removed from the stem, during their growth, they may be replaced by inarching, or grafting by approach, which may be done by taking any young branch that is conveniently placed, and cutting off a slice from the side of the branch, about half its thickness through, and an inch in length, and then removing a similar piece of bark and wood from that part of the stem where the graft is required to grow, place them together so that the edges of the bark of each may come in contact, and bind them with matting, &c. ; this may be done either in the spring or at mid
summer, and they will unite by the winter, and the graft may then be severed and the bandage removed.
In places where branches cannot be obtained convenient for the purpose of engrafting, buds may be inserted in the usual manner of inoculation.
If in the course of the spring or summer, any or all the bearers should be deprived of their fruit by frost, blight, or other casualities, or are otherwise injured and rendered useless, they may be immediately cut back, or taken clean out; so as to favour the young shoot, that is best placed to fill the space as a bearer, the following season ; and such shoots being so favoured, by the whole sap and space being given to them, will be proportionally stronger for succeeding bearers. If the horizontal itself be rendered weak or imperfect, beyond the first bearer, it may be cut out, and the bearer, which will by this be made strong enough, be brought down in its place.
Should it appear desirable at the autumn pruning, that the old horizontal with its bearers should remain another season only for the sake of its fruit, and then be taken out, the first bearer may be brought down across the other bearers, (see A. figure 4.) by which means it will be furnished with bearers in a proper manner, to take place of the old horizontal, whenever it is cut out, which, for the reasons before stated, may possibly be early in the spring, or in the course of the summer; and in
this case, at the next winter nailing, the change will scarcely be seen, for all the sap intended for the old horizontal and bearers, will have been given to this new one.
As this part of the management constitutes the most valuable part of this mode of training, and is what I have observed to puzzle a gardener more than any other, I have given sketches of horizontals and bearers arranged in different manners. See figures 3 and 4.
Trees must be frequently looked over during the summer, and the branches depressed or raised, as it may appear necessary to decrease or increase the luxuriance of any particular part ; and as often as any branches are rendered useless, either from a failure of fruit, or otherwise, they must be cut out, and the general cutting should be performed as early as possible, after being divested of its fruit, for the earlier this is done, the better will the wounds heal, and the buds form themselves for the succeeding season.
After the last cutting or pruning has been performed, the trees may remain loose until the spring, or such parts of them as are not in danger of being injured by winds.
Notwithstanding this time or season for cutting is opposed to the general practice, it is certain, all fruit trees are less liable to gum, or canker, when cut during the season of their growth, than when more at rest in the winter, and the advantages resulting from adopting this season of the year for