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part. It is easier for the tree to make new roots than to heal up old ones.
Depth-.—The tree should be planted the same depth that it was in nursery.
Filling.—I have found it best to fill the hole only about half full, leaving a basin to receive water and then complete the filling after irrigation.
Settling The Earth.—It is not necessary to spend time tramping the earth down upon the roots, as the water to be applied will settle it more effectually than it is possible to do with the foot.
Irrigating.—Citrus trees should always be irrigated as soon as planted. Kun the basin at each tree full, and after the water has soaked away, fill in with dry earth, which prevents evaporation.
Straightening Up.—When all are planted go through the orchard and right up such trees as may be found leaning.
Additional Pruning.—If the tree shows a tendency to wilt, it is a good plan to prune it still further, even cutting away to a few leaves or none at all.
Indications.—If a tree wilts and the leaves cling to their stems, becoming dry and dead, the chances are that the tree is lost. If the leaves drop off, the tree will almost surely put forth new ones.
Washing The Trees.—If the trees are infested with any sort of scale or smut, wash them thoroughly with soap suds, scrubbing the stocks and spraying the tops. It is but fair to give them a clean start.
Wrapping The Stocks.—If rabbits or rodents are apt to prove troublesome, it is a good plan to wrap the stocks with paper and tie lightly with twine. This keeps the animals from gnawing the bark. The wrapping is also a good protection to the young and tender stocks against the hot sun. Some people whitewash their trees instead of wrapping them and are well pleased with the result.
Designating Varieties.—If you plant several varieties of trees, the best way to keep track of them is to make a diagram of the orchard in some convenient book of record, designating varieties by numbered rows. Tags on trees are a nuisance, and besides, soon become weather-worn and obliterated. The same is true of letered stakes in the orchard ground.
Lost Time.—The orange tree in transplanting loses a year's growth; this under the most favorable circumstances. I do not mean to say that it utterly fails to grow the first year after removal, but that the check which it sustains reduces its average size to that of trees a year younger, not transplanted.
New Growth.—At the next succeeding season of growth, if the conditions are all favorable, the tree puts forth new shoots from the stock and branches. Often these shoots make their first appearance upon the stock, and cover it with a thick growth down to the very ground.
Water Sprouts.—These shoots, below the point where they are serviceable as branches, are called water-sprouts, and they must be trimmed off at the earliest practicable opportunity. However it is not always advisable to break off these sprouts as soon as they appear. If the upper part of the tree has started new growth simultaneously with the stock, then the stock should be cleared, and the earlier the better. Rub off the incipient shoots when no bigger than the point of a pin and the vitality of the tree will go into the top, provided the top is ready to receive it. But when the water-sprouts are the only growth the tree attempts to make, it is advisable to let them remain for the good they may do. The leaves thus put forth will elaborate the sap and start the vital forces of the tree throughout. With the additional strength thus gained the top buds, in turn will be pushed forth, and when these shall have formed branches and leaves the watersprouts may be safely dispensed with. Should the top utterly fail to grow, and become dead, th6 topmost or most vigorous of the water-sprouts may be preserved to form a new stock and top.
Suckers.—This growth which starts from the crown of the roots just below the surface of the ground should be cut off as soon as discovered, as it will sap the life of the tree if allowed to grow. Only in one instance is there an exception to the rule of destruction of suckers. If you are satisfied the main stock is dead or likely to die, the sucker may be left to form a new tree. But bear in mind, the sucker tree will be a seedling.
ing one year with another and averaging the longer with the shorter seasons, the seven-months rule will hold good. It is during this rainless period that irrigation becomes necessary to sustain vegetable life. Formerly irrigation was much more general and frequent than in latter years. Within a comparatively recent period it has been determined that thorough cultivation will, in a great measure, reduce the necessity of applying water artificially, and, in the case of many varieties of grapes and deciduous trees, irrigation may be dispensed with entirely. Orange trees to thrive well and bring forth profitable crops, must be irrigated.
Over-irrigation To Re Avoided—It is a mistake, however, to suppose that because some water is good, a great deal more water is better. No error is more pernicious or, in the end, more certainly ruinous to trees than excessive irrigation.
In 1877 a committee of the Sonthern California Horticultural Society, appointed to investigate the matter of irrigation, made a valuable report, which was summarized in the following paragraph:
"The systems of irrigation in use throughout the district are varied. Many use the old system of flooding the entire ground every three or four weeks, using water to the exclusion of cultivation. Others irrigate less and cultivate more. We find, in fact, all phases of irrigation and cultivation, from all water and no work to all work and no water. Neither extreme is profitable, but a golden mean of two or three thorough irrigations, with thoroguh cultivation, your committee believe the orcbardist will find the most successful. On heavy soils the water should not touch the tree and great care should be exercised after each irrigation that the ground may not bake."
A Matter Of Education.—When the ground about the tree is frequently flooded, the roots are drawn to the surface. The tree then becomes more sensitive to every change of moisture, and if water is not applied at the regular and frequent intervals to which the tree has been accustomed, it wilts and droops. It is not to be supposed that the best of human care can furnish a supply equal to the storage reservoirs of nature which lie deeper in the
earth, and to which the roots ought to be encouraged to go for their supplies. Trees are creatures of habit no less than men, and, "as the twig is bent, the tree's inclined." It is best to commence this education early; if you postpone it too long your orchard is likely to prove a lot of spoiled children on your hands.
How Much To Ibrigate.—During the first summer after planting young orange trees, it may be necessary to water them every month or six weeks. Make it a point to be thorough with your work when you do irrigate. Let the water penetrate deep, and assist the young roots in working down. Do not under any circumstances, allow the ground to remain after irrigating in a sodden condition, to bake hard and evaporate the moisture almost as rapidly as it was applied. A tree thus neglected is soon in a worse condition than it would have been if it had received no irrigation at all. I have found it the best plan in treating young trees to excavate a considerable basin about each tree and fill this basin with water once or even twice if deemed necessary. Then, after the water has entirely soaked away, fill the basin with dry earth. This covering acts as a mulch, preventing the evaporation of the water applied, and the tree is prepared to wait a long time for another drink. The second summer, trees will flourish with three or four irrigations, and the third summer they will thrive with two or three.
Want Of Irrigation—How ManifestEd.—Be governed by circumstances. If you see that a tree is suffering, as indicated by curled or wilted and leathery leaves and drooping stems, do not delay the application of water. It needs help at once. If you follow the plan here indicated and do your work thoroughly, you will find these calls less and less frequent as the tree obtains its foothold on terra firma. You will then have brought it up in the way it should go, and it will reward you in future by a healthy and profitable life and a minimum of labor exacted for its sustenance. It is not advisable to leave the tree until it hangs out its signals of distress before applying water. Keep a sharp watch over your orchard and you may detect the premonitory symptoms in one or