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INSECTS AND DISEASES AND METHODS OF FIGHTING THEM







I use the term "methods of fighting" rather than the more usual one, "remedies," because by both experience and study I am more and more convinced that so long as the commercial fields of agriculture remain in the present absolutely unorganized condition, and so long as the gardener--home or otherwise--who cares to be neglectful and thus become a breeder of all sorts of plant pests, is allowed so to do--just so long we can achieve no remedy worth the name. When speaking of a remedy in this connection we very frequently are putting the cart before the horse, and refer to some means of prevention. Prevention is not only the best, but often the only cure. This the gardener should always remember. This subject of plant enemies has not yet received the attention from scientific investigators which other branches of horticulture have, and it is altogether somewhat complicated. Before taking up the various insects and diseases the following analysis and list will enable the reader to get a general comprehension of the whole matter. Plant enemies are of two kinds--(1) insects, and (2) diseases. The former are of two kinds, (a) insects which chew or eat the leaves or fruit; (b) insects which suck the juices therefrom. The diseases also are of two kinds--(a) those which result from the attack of some fungus, or germ; (b) those which attack the whole organism of the plant and are termed "constitutional." Concerning these latter practically nothing is known. It will be seen at once, of course, that the remedy to be used must depend upon the nature of the enemy to be fought. We can therefore reduce the matter to a simple classification, as follows:





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