GREENHOUSE AND CONSERVATORY.
Careful attention should now be given to the picking off mouldy and dead
leaves, decaying flower-stems, &c., as they spread contagion wherever
they touch. Drip to be prevented, and atmospheric humidity to be
disposed of by a gentle day fire occasionally,
and the free admission of
Azaleas (Chinese).--Introduce a few into heat for early bloom. The A.
Indica alba and Phoenicea are best to begin with; to be succeeded
by Smith's coccinea, and after it any of the other varieties. As
decorations for the conservatory or drawing-room they are invaluable
where they continue for six weeks or two months in perfect beauty.
Camellias.--Water, when necessary, to be given in a slightly tepid
state, and plenty of air, that the buds may be allowed to swell full and
prominent by a slow but sure process. If bloom is required early, to be
forwarded by introducing them into a situation where heat is applied.
STOVE AND ORCHID-HOUSE.
Withhold moisture entirely from the roots of deciduous Orchids, and
such as are sinking into a state of repose. Any late specimens, or
importations, making late growths to be favoured with the best light
situations in the house and a little water, to keep up the vitality
sufficient to produce the secretions necessary to carry them safely
through the dull days of winter. Look over all growing plants, and see
that they do not suffer for want of water. Look to every Orchid,
even the smallest growing on blocks or in baskets, they all require
attention. Repot or surface dress any that require it. A favourable
day to be chosen to wash the lights for the more free admission of that
agent most indispensable for their health. The whole to be kept neat,
and free from insects; and the plants on stages, tables, or suspended
from blocks, baskets, &c., to be arranged in a manner the most suitable
for a picturesque and pleasing effect.
Where early forcing is intended it is advisable to give a thorough
cleansing to the houses by limewashing and dressing the wood of
Cherries, Figs, Peaches, Vines, &c., as frequently directed.
Beans (Dwarf Kidney).--Sow in six-inch pots; when crocked to be filled
within three inches of the rim with a compost consisting of old Cucumber
or Melon mould, rotten dung and leaf mould in about equal proportions.
To be placed in any convenient part of the forcing-house for a few days
until the soil is warm. The Beans are then sown about ten or twelve in
each pot, and pressed by the finger about an inch below the soil. In a
week they will be up; to be then thinned out, according to the strength
of the plants, to six or eight in each, and to receive a gentle
watering. When the two first leaves are fully developed the plants to
be earthed up as high as the cotyledons. To be regularly syringed and
watered at the roots, taking especial care that they do not become
too wet, or they will damp off. When they have made two joints to be
stopped, to cause them to produce laterals and bearing branches. The
plants to be placed as close to the glass as possible. The Chinese
Dwarf and Fulmer are good sorts for forcing.
Figs.--A temperature of about 40 deg. will suit them at present; if
allowed to get lower they are very apt to suffer. Trees in pots to be
removed to any house where that degree of temperature is kept up.
Peaches.--Where the roots are inside, and have been kept dry, an
application of weak, clear liquid manure, at the temperature of summer
heat (76 deg.), will act as a stimulant to the roots, whose services are
required before much excitement takes place at top.
Pines.--Now, at the dullest season of the year, it is necessary to be
very cautious in regulating the bottom and surface temperatures, more
especially in the succession-houses or pits; a bottom heat of about 70
deg., with a steady top temperature of about 60 deg. during the day, and
about 55 deg. during the night, will keep the plants in a comparatively
comfortable state of rest, neither allowing the temperature to decline
so low as to reduce their vitality to such a degree as to endanger their
restoration to vigour in proper season, nor to rise so high as to excite
them into a growth that would be immature for want of solar light and
heat. A moderate application of water will also be necessary.
Vines.--When the Grapes are all cut, prune the Vines without loss of
time, that the wounds may have sufficient time to get perfectly healed
before they are excited into growth. If delayed until early spring,
bleeding will be sure to follow. Vines in pots intended for forcing
should either be placed within the protection of the house appropriated
to them, or secured from the effects of severe weather.
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