By E. I. KING,
it A.. F.It.11 IF you have not yet cut down the canes of newly-planted loganberries, and also cut out from the old loganberries and blackberries the wood which bore fruit last year, you should do so at once. I think it far better always to cut out immediately after fruiting the wood which has just borne the crop, so that the sap is diverted at once to the young growth for the next crop. But do it now without delay if you did not do it at the proper time.
Except in the very wildest parts of the country it is now time to prune roses. There is little to choose between a knife and a good
pair of secateurs; indeed, I always use the latter, and find that a knife requires more skill and so much more easily makes mistakes. The bush rose bears all its best bloom on new wood springing from the bottom of the bush in the early spring. If you cut out now to within a few inches of the ground (about three inches on all bushes which are not tremendously vigorous) the shoots which came up and flowered last year. you should have a good show this time. Always cut down each stem to Just above a fat., tight bud pointing outwards, so that the resulting growth rill leave the centre of the bush open like a pudding-basin. The weaker the stems. the closer to the ground they may be cut..
So much for bush roses. Large. flowered climbing roses, however, should have only the side shoots cut back to within half an inch or so of the big, main branch which supports them. Ramblers with small bunched flowers of the Dorothy Perkins type should have all the old canes cut down right to the ground; all the bloom worth speaking of will be on the new bright green canes which sprang up from the base last year.
A Trio For Glass
Cele r y, tomatoes and vegetable marrows can all be grown well out of doore later, but now is the proper time to make a sowing in a cool greenhouse, a cool room or a cold frame. You may have read in gardening papers and articles that much mystery surrounds the growing of these things. Don't believe it. The vegetables used by man have been long developed precisely because they are amenable to ordinary careful cultivation.
It is true that every successful gardener has his own " trade secrets,' but you can get along beautifully without them. You will need some shallow boxes (with a slit taken out of the bottom for drainage) and then some good, fine, sandy soil overlying a little rougher fibrous stuff. Press the soil in quite firmly with a piece of wood, particularly at the corners; place your seed in evenly in spaced rows; cover with about half an inch more of soil; press firmly again; water by standing in a vessel SO that the moisture can seep upwards; cover with a pane of glass, and place the whole in a chosen situation in a cool greenhouse or its substitute.
The marrows will need most coddling; the others practically none. Indeed, once germination has taken place, they should be grown in as cool conditions as possible. Celery must not be stinted of moisture, and must be kept growing without a check. Tomatoes intended for outdoor culture, if the seed was obtained from a good firm, will be destined for a coil frame with the advent of mild weather and when •le seedlings are big enough. Every effort should be made to prevent lanky growth of pale colour.
Where you know your soil is subject to mildew and damp, water it a little with water just made pink with permanganate of potash; or mix Chestnut Compound (obtainable from chemists) with the soil of seed-boxes as directed.
" How to See the Country" This is the title of a companion book to the one I reviewed last week. Written by Harry 13atsford (Batsford, Ss. 6d.), it is most attractively got up, and has the best : et of photographic illustrations I have ever seen in one book. Consequently, it is the greatest of pities that there should be so much in it to disappoint. This work really falls far short of the standard achieved by H cc to Grow Food.
Mind you, the book is quite satisfactory in its way, and no doubt will appeal to many. But the promise held out to us in the introductory chapter. that by it those who have now through
evacuation been seeing the country really for the first time will be able to see its full beauty, is never fulfilled. I love the country, and want to love it more; but this book has not enabled me to do so. I felt as though I were an unconsidered third person present when two reminiscent " old boys " of the old school were discussing old times and old scenes very familiar to themselves and not at all known to me. No evacuee or other town-bird will be much better for it.
We really begin with two cataloguechapters of the various types of scenery. Even so, the wild sweep of Mountain and fell down to the rich alluvial plains of the north-western bays of England finds no mention; the same fate almost befalls the Yorkshire dales. Scotland Is mentioned just twice. It does , not help us if we hear the scenery of two districts contrasted in detail, when we have formed no comprehensive view of the panorama of either.
Sometimes the sentences are too long. and too wordy. We should have been enticed into the country and have found ourselves loving it. Catalogues cannot do this to us. Mr Batsford knows his countryside in detail, but can only occasionally give Us the personal touch or human side found in Mais and H. V. Morton; then he takes us with him through a pleasance we can love. There should have been more of this. If you know and love all this jerkily changing scenery he mentions, the author will please you with snatchy reminiscences; but he can hardly give either interest to the newcomer or new insight to those who already love their countryside.