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the borders on the top of the ground. A substratum of broken stones and gravel was laid on; the border, which was entirely maiden loam, was made 3 ft. deep at the wall, and sloped down to the edge of the old border ; it was well mulched, to prevent any great drought on the surface; and the plan was found to be the best by which fruit trees could be grown in such situations. — Mr. Keane did not agree with the system Mr. Fish saw of planting fruit trees in April ; he thinks, and he is glad to see that it is now almost generally practised, that fruit and other trees should be planted in the autumn, for the following reasons : the heat communicated to the earth during the summer is partly retained during the autumn; when the trees are planted at that time, the genial warmth of the soil will excite them to push fresh spongelets, and imbibe nourishment, by which they will be the better enabled to withstand the severity of the winter, and will be ready to grow with the first warmth of spring. Trees planted in April will receive such a check by removal and the soil being naturally cold, that they will not be able to form feeders in time to keep pace with trees planted in autumn. — Mr. Fish briefly replied. The removal of fruit trees, as detailed in his paper, he found to answer completely as a check to over-luxuriance, and as an excellent system for the successful cultivation of fruit trees; and also the system of cutting the roots, he saw highly beneficial in many instances; also the bending of branches, especially of young trees, which has a tendency of causing them to become fruitful sooner than they otherwise would do.

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Art. IV. Retrospective Criticism. ERRATUM. - In p. 91. Art. XI. line 6., for “When the plants are ripe,” read “ When the plants are up."

The Grand Conservatory at Chatsworth. – Mr. Forsyth's di im, that an acre of glass ought to cover an acre of ground, which no one of the least experience, one would think, could ever have asserted, has been refuted by a correspondent, who signs himself E. K., Streatham ; but, as he has accompanied his remarks with some observations which, as coming from an anonymous writer, and with reference to one who has given his name and address, we cannot publish, if E. K. will favour us with his name, his article shall appear without delay. Cond.

Bartram’s Botanic Garden. - It is never too late to make an apology where justice or propriety requires it, or to correct an error. I, therefore, must notice the misprint in my article, Gard. Mag., vol. vii. p. 665., when writing about Bartram's Garden. For ten miles read three miles, that being the distance of that first of American botanic gardens and collections of American trees. It is impossible I could have made this mistake, having often visited this venerable spot. — J. M. Sept. 24. 1839.

Disadvantage of a Gardener boarding with the House Servants of a Family. I wish you, at the end of another year, when summing up the progress of gardening, would dilate on the disadvantage many gardeners are under, by being obliged to board in a gentleman's house. They are thereby unable to give the science of gardening that study without which no one is scarce worthy of the name of gardener. — W. B. Jan. 1840.

Grafting the Orange on the Pomegranate.— In the Vol. XIII. for 1837, p. 476., you insert a notice from me, that the American consul at Malta would write to you on the subject of the oranges of that island deriving their red flesh from engrafting that tree on a pomegranate stock. You need not expect any communication from him, because he has explained the fact I was in search of, to my full satisfaction, in a letter dated 'July 12. 1838. He is enabled to do this from the information of Professor Terafa, of the University of Malta, and author of some works on botany. This gentleman, after noticing the general prevalence of the error in question, says: “Our blood or red coloured

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orange is nothing more than a variety of the common orange, derived from a tree accidentally planted in earth abounding in oxide of iron, which in a part of the island is not uncommon; and the same being afterwards propagated by grafting, served to preserve the variety of the species, while it has not the power to change its nature.” It would be well to publish this.

The general prevalence of the error into which I was led, may be known from a fact mentioned to me by my correspondent, the American consul, Wm. Winthrop Andrews ; “ that, in three publications which recently came under his observation, two in Italian and one in English, the authors have entertained the same opinion on the subject in question, the origin of which is now clearly ascertained.”

Sir James E. Smith says, in a note in the Linnean Correspondence, vol. ii. p. 454., that “ Chionanthus virgínicus is successfully grafted upon the common ash, a tree of the same natural order, but not of the same genus; and in the Courier Agricole, Paris, 1839, I find the following facts: Gabriel Simon, nurseryman at Metz, is said to have succeeded in grafting the chestnut on the oak. M. D’Hombre Tiermas, Member of the Academy of Gardening, publishes in the Bulletin of the Free Society of Nimes, that he, some years since, grafted the chestnut on the cork-oak tree; and that, more than '100 years ago, his maternal great-grandfather grafted upon a number of oaks a variety of chestnuts on his property of Lauvage. Three of these oaks still remain, which he shows to visiters ; and, what is more remarkable, the grafts having been inserted high up the tree, the trunks push out branches of the oak, whilst the higher branches of the tree yield chestnuts of the kind called Pellegrines. The address of the Courier Agricole is, M. Cassin, Rue Tarrane, No. 12. Post paid. — J. M. Philadelphia, Aug. 19. 1839.

Large Trees. — Two pine trees were recently cut down in the state of Maine. The Portland Advertiser says that one of them, at Liberty, measured 7 ft. diameter at the stump ; it had three branches, and 10,610 ft. of square-edged boards were made from it. The other was cut for a canal at Norrigewock, and was 154 ft. long, and measured 44 ft. diameter. (Gazette of the United States of Philadelphia, Oct. 30. 1839.)

The Calling of the Queen Bee. — I am gratified to find your correspondent, Mr. Wighton, satisfied with my explanation respecting the calling of the bee queen during the swarming season. And, as I take it for granted that he is really desirous of profiting by the experience of others, I readily offer him the benefit of mine in respect to his remaining doubts and opinions in other points of bee science; and, when I take the liberty of putting him right where my experience leads me to think him in error, I hope he will do me the justice to believe that I do so from no wish to disparage what he calls his “scanty apiarian knowledge,” or make an unseenly boast of my more learned experience ;” but simply to contribute my mite in “establishing a clearer understanding of the points” under discussion.

The first sentence which I have to notice is one in which Mr. Wighton takes credit to himself for the discovery of a fact which even Huber had overlooked. “ In an article,” he says, “ on the calling of queen bees, I stated my

inability to account for their silence before the first swarm, except upon the supposition that the old queen went off with it eight or ten minutes (? days) before her successors left their cells. This having been ascertained to be the case, the silence is so easily accounted for, that it appears strange the inference should have been overlooked by the most able apiarians, especially Huber,” &c. My explanation may probably satisfy him that the prince of bee-masters is chargeable with no such oversight. Huber knew too well how the fact stood, to express any surprise or doubt at the silence of the old queen. He knew that a queen mother is never prevented by the bees from destroying the virgin queens, if she is so disposed. Now, as the cause of piping, or calling, as I have already shown, is the rage of the virgin successor of the old queen on being prevented from destroying her juniors, Mr. Wighton will at once see that the silence is satisfactorily accounted for. The old queen meets with

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nothing to excite her anger, therefore she does not express, by piping, what in fact she does not feel.

Again, after expressing his satisfaction at having his doubts on the subject of piping removed, Mr. Wighton continues : “ Nevertheless, I must be allowed to point out some incongruities in his (Dr. D.'s) manner of stating certain points in his subject, as well as some very doubtful quotations from Huber.” Passing by, for the present, the “ incongruities," I would apply myself to the “ very doubtful quotations from Huber," a phraseology which I do not very clearly understand. But Mr. Wighton, on looking over my former paper attentively, will observe that, strictly speaking, I have made no quotations whatever from Huber; but merely stated that, “ as to the secret means nature employs to induce the old queen to leave her abode without having recourse to the same violence towards her successors as these last offer to theirs, even Huber acknowledges we must confess our ignorance.” My authority for saying so will be found in his Observations on Bees, p. 172.; where he says : “ To preserve the race, it is necessary that the old queen should conduct the first swarm. But what is the secret means employed by nature to induce her departure ? I am ignorant of it.” So much for “ some very doubtful quotations from Huber.”

Then, as to the “ incongruities,” the first adverted to is thus expressed : “ He (Dr. D.) states that the queen, in the after-swarms, hearing her rivals in their cells, attacks them ; some of the bees prevent her efforts, and she, in a rage, goes off, taking a part of the bees with her. By this, it appears that she

а leaves the hive before any of her rivals have come forth, which certainly is not the case ; as there are frequently several queens in an after-swarm."

There are two errors here: 1. I do not state that “ the queen, hearing her rivals in their cells, attacks them ;” for I knew she would attack them, whether they cried or not. But, 2., I do say that “she leaves the hive before any of her rivals come forth ;” in opposition to Mr. Wighton's assertion that “ this is certainly not the case, as there are frequently several queens in an after swarm." I have only to repeat the substance of what I said on this point in my former communication, that, as soon as the senior of the young queens leaves her native cell, which she does in a few days (not minutes) after the old queen has led forth the prime swarm, she hastens to destroy the royal brood still in their cells, but is prevented from doing so by the workers ; and that, annoyed by the failure of her repeated attempts, she hurriedly traverses the hive, communicating her agitation to the bees, and goes off' with a swarm. Immediately after her departure, the workers allow the next in seniority to emerge from her cell; but, at the moment of the exit of the swarm, there is, I repeat, no queen hatched. I am quite aware that there is sometimes more than one queen in a second swarm, though not at all so frequently as in a third or fourth. But this is not inconsistent with the above assertion; because, in fact, the supernumerary queen or queens are hatched during the outgoing of the swarm, after the leader has disappeared; that is, they take advantage of the confusion caused by the mass of bees, including their guards, following the departed queen, to escape from their cells, and mingle with the crowd rushing out. This happens only when the population, diminished by swarming, is scanty, and when the bees guarding the royal brood are reduced in numbers, and is of very frequent occurrence in third and fourth swarms.

The next" incongruity” is stated as follows': “ The assertion that the old queen is not fiercely disposed towards the young ones is, in some degree, set aside by the after-statement, that, if delayed by stormy weather till they are hatched, she destroys them.” The assertion is true, notwithstanding, in both

The old queen is not fiercely disposed towards the young ones at the usual time of a first swarm coming off, because these last have not yet reached the stage of nymphs, when they are sealed up. Why this should be, I do not pretend to give a reason; we can only say that such is the fact, and refer it to instinct. But, should the swarming be delayed on account of unpropitious

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weather, the young queens pass into the nymph state, the instinctive aversion of the old queen is excited, and slaughter ensues.

“ The idea,” continues Mr. Wighton, “that the queen goes abroad in search of drones is hardly sufficiently established to warrant the conclusion derived from it by some, viz. that it is the immediate cause of swarming." That the young queen does go abroad in search of the males is a fact as well established as any other in the natural history of the insect; but that this should be the immediate cause of swarming is a notion I never before heard broached, and could never be entertained by any one who had pretensions to bee knowledge ; in fact, it is not worthy of the words Mr. Wighton and I spend on it.

Hoping that these remarks may be satisfactory to your correspondent, I am, Sir, &c. — W. Dunbar. Lockerby, Dec. 12. 1839.

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Art. V. The Royal Botanic Garden at Kew. It has been currently reported, and we believe on good authority, that government has had an intention to disperse the collection of plants in the Royal Botanic Garden at Kew, and employ the ground for raising culinary vegetables, and the houses for forcing. The plants, we are informed, were in part offered to the Horticultural Society; and, in part, to the Royal Botanic Society of the Inner Circle, Regent's Park; and to the Society attempting to be established at Reading, on the foundation of the collection at White Knights. The conditions proposed to the Horticultural Society were, that they should open their gardens to the public twice a week ; what were proposed to the other societies we have not heard.

Though the intentions of government have, we believe, been defeated for the present, chiefly through the exertions of some influential embers of the Horticultural Society, and more especially its president; yet we cannot help deeply regretting that it should ever have been made. We regret it, first, because the collection is one of the most extensive and rich in fine specimens which exists in Europe, having been gradually accumulated through a long series of years, and at a very considerable expense to the country; secondly, because we consider it unjust towards the people, who contribute an annual sum for its support; or say for the support of the splendour of the crown, of which splendour the Botanic Garden at Kew is as much entitled to be considered a part, as the collections of pictures, statues, and books, in any of the palaces; thirdly, because in this country, where fashion is everything, we think it of great importance to all classes that the fashion of having fine gardens and rich collections of plants should be set by royalty, in order that it may prevail among the nobility and gentry; and, fourthly, that such an act will render us still more ridiculous than we are in the eyes of our Continental neighbours, who laugh at our wealth and ostentation in some things, and our meanness and want of taste in others. Whether the collection be distributed among the gardens mentioned, or given to any one of them, what security is there for its existence for any length of time ? Even the Horticultural Society, flourishing as it is at present, might become bankrupt in a year or two; and, as to the other societies or gardens, they cannot even pretend to be established. The collection might almost as well be sold in lots, to whoever chose to become purchasers. There might be some show of excuse for dispersing these plants, if a rigid economy were shown in other state establishments; but, while we have three persons doing what might very easily be done by one, as in the Commission of Woods and Forests, and a number of ambassadors at the different petty states of Europe, the business done by whom would be equally well performed by the consuls at the same states, not to mention other similar cases, we cannot evince the slightest sympathy with the proposition to save two or three thousands a year, by doing away with one of the most interesting

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and instructive state ornaments we possess, and one which is at the same time so beneficial to science. It is given as an excuse, that the present sovereign has no taste for botany or gardening ; but that appears to us far from being a sufficient reason. The same sovereign may have no taste for pictures, or statues, or books. Would that be a satisfactory reason for disposing of the royal collections, or libraries ? Supposing the taste of the sovereign to change, and botany and gardening to become favourite pursuits; is the sovereign in that case to be precluded from indulging in them? or is the country to be put to the expense of again assembling together such a col. lection as now exists at Kew? In the latter case, indeed, we doubt if it would be practicable to do so at any expense. Either the Royal Botanic Garden at Kew is an appendage to the crown, which the crown is allowed a certain sum to keep up, or it is not. If it is, then we cannot understand on what principle this appendage is proposed to be dispensed with, without an especial act of parliament. If it is not, then we say let the subject be discussed in parliament, and let it be ascertained how far it will be advisable to dispense with what has hitherto been considered a state ornament. We know of only two substantial arguments in favour of giving up the Royal Botanic Garden at Kew: and these are, the miserable style in which it has lately been kept up for want of funds; and, secondly, the exclusive system on which it has, till lately, been managed, from the superintendants acting on the now obsolete idea, that the king's garden ought, if possible, to contain plants which were not in the gardens of any of his subjects. This last feeling has, however, in a great measure been given up of late years; and, at all events, this reason and the preceding one call only for reform in the management of the garden, not its destruction. — Cond.

Since the above was sent to the printer, we have seen the Literary Gazette of February 22., in which is the following paragraph.

Anticipated Destruction of Kew Gardens. - The Earl of Surrey, lord treasurer of Her Majesty's household, has just made, on the part of the government, an offer to the council of the Horticultural Society, to sell the whole of the unrivalled collection of plants in the Botanic Garden at Kew. This farfamed garden was founded by a princess of the house of Saxe-Gotha, the illustrious predecessor of His Royal Highness Prince Albert, and wife of Frederick, Prince of Wales. It was laid out by Sir William Chambers. It contains, and has always contained, the finest collection in the world. It was a source of great interest to George the Third, and to his consort, Queen Charlotte ; and, in more recent times, to George the Fourth, and William the Fourth : the last-named monarch erected the splendid new conservatory. The whole expense of the gardens, including every thing, even to money paid to the assistant gardeners, does not exceed 1000l. a year. (This must be a mistake; 20001, is probably nearer the truth.] The council of the Horticultural Society refused to purchase, and expressed their sorrow and regret at the offer having been made, viewing it as a national misfortune. Since the rejection of this proposal, we are assured that in a few days the plants will be given to those who ask them. The palm-house, which contains some of the finest specimens in Europe, could not be replaced under any circumstances; the plants must inevitably perish, they cannot be removed and prosper, for they are planted in the soil. The collection, also, of Australian plants is unequalled, both in extent and in the size and beauty of the specimens; removal of them will also be followed by destruction. In fine, the garden contains the vegetable treasures brought home by Captains Cook, Vancouver, Tuckey, and other distinguished navigators; and the anticipated abandonment by the government is viewed by the whole of the scientific circles in the metropolis with feelings of the deepest regret. (Lit. Gaz., Feb. 22. 1840.)



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