Title Page
 Table of Contents
 Vines and climbers

Title: Florida quarterly bulletin of the Department of Agriculture
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00077080/00049
 Material Information
Title: Florida quarterly bulletin of the Department of Agriculture
Series Title: Florida quarterly bulletin of the Department of Agriculture.
Uniform Title: Report of the Chemical Division
Alternate Title: Rare crops and ornamentals
Physical Description: 9 v. : ill. (some folded) ; 23 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Florida -- Dept. of Agriculture
Publisher: Department of Agriculture. State of Florida.
Place of Publication: Tallahassee, Fla.
Publication Date: July 1927
Frequency: quarterly
Subject: Agriculture -- Periodicals -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Agricultural industries -- Statistics -- Periodicals -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Genre: periodical   ( marcgt )
Periodicals   ( lcsh )
Statistics   ( lcsh )
Dates or Sequential Designation: Vol. 31, no. 4 (Oct., 1921)-v. 39, no. 3 (July 1929).
General Note: Title from cover.
General Note: Each no. has also a distinctive title.
General Note: Many issue number 1's are the Report of the Chemical Division
General Note: Issues occasional supplements.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00077080
Volume ID: VID00049
Source Institution: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: oclc - 28473180

Table of Contents
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    Table of Contents
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    Vines and climbers
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Full Text

Rare Crops



Supplement to
Florida Quarterly Bulletin
of the Department
of Agriculture
July, 1927

Commissioner of Agriculture

Table of Contents

Mushrooms .........................

G in sen g ...................................

Peppermint .........................

A sparagus .................................

Bamboo .....................

Delphiniums ...........................

Vines and Climbers.........

.... 3

............ 12

.............. ............................... ........................... 14

.............. ........................................ ....................... 19

................................................................................... 2 3

The Story of Production and

Canning of Domestic Mushrooms

(Food and Health Education)

7 HEN you see a basket of mushrooms in the grocer's
window, you regard them with interest, if not curi-
osity. And there is something fascinating about
the mysterious little umbrella- or ball-shaped fungi which
are yearly becoming more common on the market.
Ask a lover of mushrooms just what there is about them
to make him go into ecstacies at the mere mention of the
name, and it doubtful whether he will be able to tell you,
for their flavor is as indescribable to most people as their
production is unknown. Perhaps your only acquaintance
with mushrooms has been with the uncultivated varieties
which spring up in the woods and fields; or perhaps you
know a man who grows or has attempted to grow mush-
rooms in his cellar. If you had ever stopped to consider
the matter at all, you may have thought that the grocer
obtained his supply from one of these sources. But the
facts of the case are far different-the cultivation of mush-
rooms for the market constitutes a very sizable industry,
the story of which is one of the most interesting in food
It has not been many years ago that people who liked
mushrooms were to be found only among the wealthy epi-
cures, who could afford to import their food delicacies, for
mushrooms had to be imported from France. There were
a few men in this country, however, who, though not among
the wealthy epicures, still possessed an inordinate liking
for mushrooms. Unable to afford the imported variety,
they began to experiment on their cultivation in this coun-
try. At first, it was more or less a hobby, but later on
when with greater experience they had greater success,
they began to raise them for the market, devoting all their
time to the business.
One of these men was Edward H. Jacob of West Chester,
Pennsylvania. Mr. Jacob started growing mushrooms on
a commercial scale nineteen years ago, and probably knows
more about their scientific production than any man in the
world. Therefore it is small wonder that the little town
of West Chester and vicinity today produces more mush-
rooms than any other spot in the world; and, needless to


say, epicures no longer import their mushrooms from
Mushrooms are grown from mushroom spawn, which re-
sembles nothing so much as mouldy earth; and the spawn,
in turn, is produced from mushroom spores. This process
involves scientific handling and great skill. You have un-
doubtedly seen the gills on the under side of the mush-
room. When the mushroom is ripe, these gills are filled
with a microscopic dust which are the spores. A fine speci-
men of a ripe mushroom is selected, and under scientific
conditions the spores are gently shaken from it. So minute
are these spores that those shaken from only a small section
of gill, and properly handled, would supply your corner
grocer with mushrooms for many months.
Specially prepared compost, in small quantities, is then
inoculated with the spores. This is done under the most
sterile conditions, for careless handling would endanger the
purity of the spawn and other material might grow in the
compost. The inoculated compost is then placed in a warm
room to allow the spores to develop and spread their cob-
web-like mycelium throughout the portion of compost.
This requires about six weeks, and the resulting mass is
known as the mushroom spawn, and is ready for the beds.
Mushrooms require very particular conditions for
growth. The place selected must be moist, warm and dark.
In France, where the climate is milder than here, they are
grown in caves where the conditions are naturally suited
to them. Since no such ideal state exists here, specially
constructed houses of hollow tile are built for them. These
houses are about one hundred feet long and eighteen feet
high. There are no windows in them, just a door at each
end. They are maintained at a temperature of sixty de-
grees throughout the season. Down the center of each
house is an aisle just wide enough for a man to walk, and
on each side are the mushroom beds, built up one above the
other like berths in a sleeping car, six high and extending
the full length of the house.
The season extends from September until June, and
during that period there are produced two different crops,
which means that the houses and beds must be thoroughly
cleaned and fumigated after each crop, and entirely new
compost, top soil and spawn spread for each crop. Both
the compost and top soil for these beds are specially pre-
pared. As much care and protection from foreign seeds
or fungi must be exercised in the production of the mush-
room as was required in the preparation of the spawn, for



if any other germinating element got into the beds other
than the spawn, the crop would be ruined and thousands of
dollars lost.
So important is this factor that in front of the houses are
concrete platforms on which the compost is piled ready to
go into the houses. Before an automobile, a wagon, or a
man goes on this platform, they must go through a disin-
fecting pool so there will be no danger of any foreign mat-
ter being tracked into the compost or the houses. This
explains, also, why cultivated mushrooms are absolutely
safe to eat, for under these antiseptic conditions it is im-
possible to grow anything in the beds but the edible variety.
After the spawn has been planted about two months, the
mushrooms begin to appear on top of the beds. Each
morning all the buttons which have reached market size
are picked from the beds and sorted according to size.
Many of these are packed in baskets and shipped fresh to
the city markets. The Jacob houses in West Chester pro-
duce over a million pounds of mushrooms each year, and if
you will stop to realize the weight of mushrooms, you will
quickly see that it requires quite a few of them to make a
million pounds.
In addition to the growing demand for fresh mushrooms,
the housewife has, for some time, been familiar with the
canned variety which she is wont to buy on special occa-
sion to dress up some dish; but up to within the last four
or five years the canned mushrooms have all been imported
from France. These mushrooms served very well as a
garnish, but had little of the true mushroom flavor and
could not be used interchangeably with the fresh. In the
Jacob establishment at West Chester, a means was finally
found for canning the mushrooms so they would retain all
of their delicate flavor. So successful have they been that
not only can the market, unprovided with fresh mushrooms,
assure its customers of the quality of the domestic canned
as a substitute for the fresh, but in the markets where both
are available, the customer invariably selects the canned in
preference to the fresh.
Briefly, the canning process is this: The mushrooms are
sorted for size, and washed in clear cold water. After a
short period of steaming to permit shrinkage so the cans
can be filled, the mushrooms are placed in the can; pure
mushroom juice is poured over them, and the cans are
sealed. This work is carried on so quickly (the fresher the
mushrooms are, the better their flavor) that it is possible
to have them packed ready to ship two hours after they are
picked from the beds.


Mushrooms are not high in food value, a fact which
recommends them to many people who are on a low caloric
diet. On the other hand, due to the fact that they combine
so admirably with foods which are high in food value, such
as cream sauces, butter, meats, etc., a very nutritious dish
can be made from them. Mushrooms have long been con-
sidered a luxury, but that depends on how they are used.
For example, a dish of delicious creamed mushrooms is
not a poor man's dish, although it would take the place
of meat in a meal and probably cost no more, beside offer-
ing a pleasant variation. But use the mushrooms, either
the canned, domestic or the fresh, as a food extender, an
addition to some left-over meat, or fowl, and you will find
that you not only have something that is most appetizing,
but inexpensive as well. Somehow, left-over foods with
mushrooms added, cease to be left-over. Try and see for
yourself if this is not true.

Ginseng and Riches

(The Farm Journal)

INSENG grows wild, and formerly was quite plenti-
ful throughout the northern and northwestern states,
extending as far south as the mountainous sections of
Kentucky, Tennessee and the Virginias. Ginseng is used
only by the Chinese. They use it to some extent as a con-
diment with their food, in their religious ceremonies, and
sometimes about the same as some people use a rabbit's
foot or a horse-chestnut. But its main use is medicinal.
Ginseng from the mountains of Manchuria and Chosen
is considered the best. American comes next, and the
Japanese last. The latter is not of much value. The
annual export from this county for the last fifty years
has averaged close to 175,000 pounds.
About thirty years ago, the wild root began to play out
and an attempt was made to grow it in gardens, but for
some years failed. After a time, would-be growers found
that the seed would not come until the second spring after
it was harvested and that during all that time it must be
kept moist; also, that the plant must have at least partial
shade. With this knowledge, fair success was attained.


Location seems to have more effect on this plant than
type of soil. It will thrive in any good garden soil, but
it wants high and dry land. About the only drawback
to its cultivation now is disease, and that can be avoided
by using only naturally dry ground and planting in a
high, airy location. Moderately rich soil is healthier than
very rich soil.
Ginseng is now grown with fair success in all northern
and northwestern states as far as Oregon and Washing-
ton, provided gardens are laid out in airy locations.
Warm, rich valleys are not adapted to its cultivation.
Seeds or young plants should be planted in the fall. The
roots should be set so the bud will be from one to two
inches below the surface, and a mulch of one inch is de-
sirable. This may be sawdust or well-rotted leaves. Seeds
should be planted about one inch deep and mulched same
as the roots. Seeds are generally planted quite close to-
gether and then transplanted to about six by eight inches
when the plants are two years old.
Beds may be worked up in the woods, but the growth
there will not be over half what it will be under artificial
shade. Hot, wet weather is the worst thing the grower
has to contend with, and with that in mind artificial shade
should be about six feet in the clear, as that makes the
bed cooler than a low shade and it also makes it easier to
weed and care for.
The crop may be harvested at five years, but is of much
better quality if allowed to stand longer. I have had wild
roots as old as ninety years, but that is rare. About seven
or eight years gives the best results, considering both size
and quality. A fair average weight for a five-year-old
root, under artificial shade, is about one and one-half
ounces, green; dry, about a half-ounce. Grown in the for-
est the weight would be less.
The roots are dug in the fall, washed and dried in the
shade and are now worth from $8 to $12 a pound, accord-
ing to quality. The growing of this crop requires close
attention, and is no crop for the slipshod man to attempt.
With proper care, it is not hard to grow and pays well.
There is always a market, as fur dealers and others are
always looking for it. Government bulletins will help the
would-be grower some, and there is a paper published
monthly that is devoted to ginseng culture and other sim-
ilar crops.
The business is no get-rich-quick scheme, and should not
be entered into except where one has a proper locality
and conditions to warrant success.


Peppermint Farming

(The Farm Journal)

A PARTY of tourists was motoring from New York to
Los Angeles. Driving along a national road in north-
ern Indiana, they noted a peculiar odor, vaguely fa-
miliar, and suggestive of candy.
"Oh, look at the funny little barns, with smoke-stacks
on!" exclaimed a feminine member of the party, just as
they reached the top of a small hill and a stretch of flat
country, broken only by a single house and the queer
barns, came to view.
"We'll have to stop to find out what kind of farming
is done with a barn like that, and maybe that will explain
this puzzling odor," said the driver as he drew up beside
a hay-wagon in front of the barn. After greeting the man
who had come out of the barn, he said: "We thought we
would like to find out what kind of farming you're doing
around here that makes a smell like a candy factory."
"Well, mister, you're right in the midst of'the pepper-
mint district," the farmer answered. "At this time of
year we're distilling the mint."
Probably you did not know that of the 16,000 acres of
peppermint harvested last year in the United States,
northern Indiana raised 12,000 acres and southern Mich-
igan the other 4,000. On farms that once were not con-
sidered worth their taxes or cost of drainage this crop is
being raised. The land has been reclaimed through drain-
age until the water is at least three feet below the surface
of the soil. This has been done at a cost of about $15 an
acre and has raised the price of the land from $10 an acre
to $200.
The industry was introduced into this section about
1840, when the muck and peat soils were found well
adapted to the cultivation of mint. There has been a
steady development since that time, and these states have


become -the greatest peppermint-producing section in the
world. They .now supply practically all the mint grown
in the United States, which is approximately one-half of
the entire world's output of these essential oils.
There are two varieties of peppermint which are grown
extensively in this country; namely, the English, or black
mint, and the American mint. The English or black mint
is grown more extensively because it produces more oil
than the American mint. The English mint leaves are
smaller, darker green, and slightly more pointed than the
leaves of American mint. In addition, the stems and
"runners" of the English mint are dark red or purple,
while the stems of the American mint are green. The
American mint, which was introduced originally from
England, is not so productive as the black mint, and al-
though still grown extensively, it is being replaced to a
large extent by the black mint.
There is also a variety known as Japanese mint, which,
however, is of a different species and is not hardy in this
country. This variety produces the largest amount of oil
and the highest percentage of menthol, but of the lowest
grade. One pound of American peppermint oil is equiva-
lent to four pounds of Japanese, since the U. S. P. requires
that 50 per cent menthol be distilled.
Peppermint oil, which is sold by the pound rather than
by liquid measure, fluctuates from $1 a pound to $25 a
pound in years when there is a shortage. In 1925, when
more than half of the 35,000 acres planted in Indiana and
Michigan were destroyed by frost in the last week in
May and the first week in June, prices reached this high
mark. The peppermint industry has had two years of
short crops, following several years of overproduction.
This acreage has been constantly expanded each year, but
on land less adapted to the crop and by inexperienced
growers. Hence, the production has not increased as the
acreage has. Last year's production of peppermint oil is
estimated at between 300,000 and 330,000 pounds.
The cultivatiofi of peppermint is begun the first year by
planting the roots in a seed-bed prepared as for potatoes.
These roots are strewn in furrows and immediately cov-
ered. The object is to plant the roots in moist ground and
to cover them before they have been exposed long to the


The machinery used by most farmers in this work is
hand-made. Common farm implements are revised to fill
the needs of the mint-grower. Even the stills for the dis-
tilling of the mint are in many cases home inventions.
Some farmers have their own mechanics who are con-
stantly working out improved implements.
Until the mint is six or eight inches high it can be cul-
tivated with a spike-tooth harrow. After that laborers
are employed to do hand weeding. An alternative of this
which has been found by some farmers to be successful is
to turn mountain range sheep on the fields. It has been
found that this species of sheep eats the weeds and yet
does comparatively little damage to the crop.
The time for harvesting the mint can be determined by
holding a leaf to the sun. Minute globules of oil can be
seen on the leaves, and the leaves have an especially
strong odor of mint when crushed in the hand. It should
be cut before many of the lower leaves are dropped, that
is, "while it is making more leaves than it is losing." Old
mint will reach this stage three or four weeks earlier in
the season than a first crop. Harvesting of old mint usu-
ally begins about the middle or latter part of July, while
young mint is seldom ready to harvest until the middle of
August or first of September.
The yield of oil is always greater in hot, dry weather.
If a heavy rain occurs about harvest time it greatly re-
duces the yield.
Harvesting and curing the mint are quite similar to
hay-making, and the same weather conditions are pre-
ferred. The mint is cut with mowing machines and al-
lowed to lie in the swath to cure for about a day. This
depends somewhat upon the weather, as the object is to
evaporate the excess moisture and wilt the leaves slightly,
but not so that they will fall off. If the mint is cut early
it will make a second growth which can be harvested
early in the fall. The second crop usually yields about
half as much oil and hay as the first cutting.
Peppermint seems to be remarkably free from diseases,
and as a rule it does not suffer seriously from insect dep-
redations. One planting of mint will continue in profit-
able condition for a long time.


The mint stills in which the peppermint is distilled con-
sist essentially of two or more large vats or tubs into which
the mint hay is put to be steamed, a boiler to generate
the steam, a condenser to condense the mint vapor and
steam as it comes from the vats, and a separator to sep-
arate the mint oil from the water.
The yield of oil varies considerably with the season
and with the different fields. Usually the yield varies
from 25 to 80 pounds of peppermint oil per acre. Some
of the best growers average about 40 pounds per acre for
a number of years. If two crops are cut in a season, the
second crop will generally average 15 or 20 pounds of
oil per acre. The yield of hay averages about one to one
and one-half tons of dried hay per acre.
One man can handle about the same acreage as of tim-
othy hay, although mint requires slightly more labor. The
small bulk of the marketable product makes it convenient
and easy to care for. In years of high prices the oil is
stored in the town banks for additional safety. Eight
hundred farmers are raising peppermint in Indiana and
Michigan. Some parts of North Carolina are adapted to
the cultivation of peppermint, according to a recent state-
ment by the State Agricultural College, Raleigh, N. C.
Peppermint oil is used in a great many medicines and
for flavoring confectionery, chewing gum and cosmetics.
This market is somewhat limited, and there is a danger of
overproduction if the mint is planted too extensively. If
tightly sealed and stored in a cool, dark place, the mint
oil will keep for several years. This practice is resorted
to in periods of overproduction and low prices.



County Agent, Aiken County, S. C.

WO acres of asparagus owned by C. J. Hill, of Aiken,
S. C., paid for themselves and returned a profit of
$685 in three years.
The asparagus was planted in 1924. The total cost that
year for crowns, planting, fertilizer and cultivation was
$95. The second year the total cost for cultivation, fertil-
izer, and harvesting was $160, and the third year $170,
making a total of $425 expended the first three years. The
second year $425 worth of asparagus was cut, and the third
year $685 worth of grass was cut from the two acres, leav-
ing a clear profit of $685 above all expenses and two acres
of crowns which are good for profitable production for 10
or 12 years more.
One ton of a 7-5-5 (PNK) commercial fertilizer and ten
loads of compost have been applied to this field each year,
which indicates that it pays to fertilize well. Mr. Hill is
well pleased with his project and says that he believes
every farmer in Aiken county should plant at least two
acres of asparagus as it fits in so well with the system of
cotton farming.
The cutting season begins in March and ends in April
just before farm labor is needed to chop cotton. Therefore,
:a few acres of asparagus give profitable employment to
the labor for a longer period during the year, and two
acres would not require any additional labor to carry it
along with the other crops. Another very decided advan-
tage in growing some asparagus is that the returns come
in just at that time of the year when a farmer's change is
running low and he needs a little available cash for cotton
Last season was one of the best seasons the asparagus
growers have had. They had more grass to ship and re-
ceived better prices, according to L. C. Eidson, secretary,

I -


treasurer, and general manager of the South Carolina As-
paragus Growers Association with headquarters at Willis-
ton, S. C. The Association shipped 223 cars, averaging
about 460 crates per car, of the famous brand of Dixie
asparagus which is so popular on the northern market and
which has brought the farmers of Barnwell, Aiken, Saluda
and Edgefield counties quite satisfactory returns. There
were 91 cars shipped from Williston, 68 from Ridge Spring,
53 from Trenton, and 11 from Johnston, in addition to
about 10,000 crates or 20 cars shipped by express.
The net price per crate jumped from $1.05 the first year
of the Association's shipping to $3.42 per crate in 1924,
$2.25 per crate in 1925, and during the 1926 season one
farmer showed us his returns of $53.03 for 13 crates, which
shows an average of a little better than $4.00 per create.
The Association has had quite a successful career and
has been the salvation of the asparagus game for this sec-
tion. It handled in 1922, 116 cars which netted $169,-
535.41; 1923, 118 cars which netted $202,031.14; 1924, 140
cars netting $253,009.39; 1925, 205 cars netting $250.000.
The association began shipping point inspection the past
season, which is insuring a uniform product of high quality
and has had a decided influence for a better price on the
northern market.
There are two types of asparagus sold on the market,
green asparagus and white asparagus. The green aspara-
gus is the type produced in the South Carolina section.
It is very tender and palatable. The green grass is pro-
duced by allowing the shoots to remain in the bed until
they are four or five inches high, and that portion above
the ground exposed to the sunlight turns green.


Bamboo, Florida's Strangest

Giant Grass

It Yields Products for a Thousand Uses


(Florida Grower)
t O the most of us, bamboo means the material from
which fishing poles are made and we are literally
amazed when we take time to study a bit about this
giant grass which produces products used for a thousand
or more different purposes. Florida growers, in particular,
should be interested in this grass which is commonly called
a tree, for it prospers in this State and provides material of
value for general farm uses.
Let us take a long jump to China and consider the im-
portance of bamboo to the orientals who could hardly exist
without that plant. The Chinaman's house is made of bam-
boo as well as his furniture, while he eats bamboo shoots
with chopsticks made from the towering grass. Rules,
yardsticks, water wheel, irrigating pipe, bird cages, flower
stands, boats, carriages, fans, parasols, spears, bows and
arrows, quivers, pens, musical instruments, matting, hats,
books, art brushes and hundreds of other useful articles
are made from bamboo.
For more than 25 years, the United States Department
of Agriculture has been testing bamboo growing in those
sections of the country where the great grass would thrive.
Today, you will find clumps of various varieties of bamboo
growing in Florida gardens and dooryards as well as
throughout the South Atlantic, Gulf Coast, Pacific Coast
and Lower Mississippi states. Uncle Sam has distributed
vast amounts of imported cuttings. He has urged south-
ern farmers to grow timber bamboo. This material yields
poles for light fences, trellises, flower stakes, clothes poles,
fruit poles and gardening purposes. Chicken coops and
yards can be built of bamboo poles and rods.
One woman in Louisiana set out a few bamboo plants


15 years ago in her backyard. Today, her bamboo grove
covers an area 100 feet square and consists of more than
1,000 canes from three to 16 inches in diameter and from
40 to 50 feet high. A year ago, this lady sold 170 poles
from her bamboo grove for $1,000. They were used in
building a fancy tea house. This grove now produces
about 400 marketable canes a year and is a remarkable
source of profit to its owner.
The boys' and girls' agricultural clubs of the Gulf Coast
states are now growing small bamboo clumps to provide
shade for their flocks of poultry. The giant grasses grow
rapidly and are easy to manage. The bamboo clump pro-
tects the chickens from hawks and other birds of prey and
also furnishes shelter from the hot sun. When the clumps
grow large enough so that the bamboo poles can be cut each
season, between 30 and 40 poles can be removed from each
square rod of area without damaging the future of the
Valuable as Ornamentals
Bamboos are being used throughout the South as orna-
mental trees for school yards. They grow rapidly and
furnish fine shade. They are also attractive and orna-
mental. Bamboos are grown extensively as windbreaks,
hedges and screens. Georgia cattlemcen report that cattle
relish the young shoots of the bamboo plant. It can be
raised on thousands of acres of waste land in the South as
a forage and grazing crop.
More than 450 tons of canned bamboo shoots are annually
imported into the United States from China and Japan.
These delicacies are consumed by Americans who have
lived abroad and become accustomed to eating bamboo. Our
Chinese and Japanese also cherish this material. Some of
our national experimental bamboo groves have furnished
edible bamboo for some of America's most important ban-
quets. Bamboo shoots and bamboo sprouts are delicious
delicacies when properly prepared.
Several million dollars worth of Calcutta bamboo are im-
ported annually from India. This material is used in
making the expensive fly rods and split bamboo rods for
American fishermen. The evidences are that in the future,
we will grow fine quality bamboo in this country suitable
for all such uses. Several million bamboo fishing poles are
also imported yearly from China and Japan. Many mil-


lions of plant stakes for the use of nurserymen and florists
are also imported.
Southern cane growers now are selling considerable quan-
tities of American bamboo for plant stake purposes. These
canes as they appear on the market are from 3 to 8 feet
long and about the same diameter as a lead pencil. The
longest canes sell as high as $27.50 a thousand. These canes
are easily grown from stake bamboos.
The timber bamboos which can be grown in the United
States, are used in the Oriental countries in building light
bridges and trestles. The large ones are valuable as tem-
porary telegraph and telephone poles. Our United States
Army engineers who have used timber bamboo largely in
military construction work in the Philippines report that
the material is very light, strong and easily handled.
Bamboo is used largely in furniture making abroad. The
canes are steamed under heavy pressure in a large cylinder
for an hour or so and then are bent to any desired shape
while still warm. This process prevents cracking. Another
method is to fill the bamboo canes with sand, then to heat
them with a plumber's torch. The canes can be bent as
heated in this manner.
Make Paper From Bamboo
Tests conducted in Florida show that certain bamboo
trees will produce from 40 to 50 tons of material annually
which can be used successfully for the manufacture of
paper. Here is a future source of paper supply which our
country may develop as other sources of paper are ex-
Crate and barrel hoops are also made of bamboo as well
as porch swings. Phonograph needles are made of bam-
boo. American manufacturers now import their raw ma-
terial for this purpose from the Orient. They would will-
ingly buy it from American growers if they would supply
dependable amounts of material. Bamboo is also useful as
a reinforcement to use instead of metal in concrete work.
American mechanics will have to learn from their
oriental cousins how to handle the valuable timber bam-
boos. In a city in Japan or China, most of the scaffolding
used in building operations is made of bamboo poles. These
are lashed together with rawhide thongs. The barefooted
workmen scramble about on the bamboo scaffolds like active
acrobats. American carpenters would soon fall to the


ground from such perilous perches because they do not
know how to cling to the bamboo poles with their feet.
The Japanese split the thin-walled bamboos into strips
and weave them into a coarse matting called "sawale"
which they use in both interior and exterior construction.
In temperate and tropical climates this material is very
useful in building light bungalows. Considerable of this
material is now used in California in the building of sum-
mer cottages and camp bungalows.
Where bamboo is used in the manufacture of furniture
the canes have to be steamed in airtight cylinders, for one
hour in order to prevent objectionable cracking. To bend
the smaller pieces of bamboo, the canes are first filled with
dry sand to the joint to be bent and then the rod is heated
in the flame of a plumber's torch. The bamboo is bent clowly
while it is being heated. Few pieces break under the
process where the work is done carefully.
One of the largest bamboo groves in the United States is
located near Savannah, Georgia, and now covers about one
acre and consists of timber bamboo varieties that are 50
to 60 feet high. This place was purchased by a wealthy
American and presented to the national Department of
Agriculture for experimental work with bamboo.
Little Known About Plant
Despite that bamboos have been known to man since the
dawn days of modern time, their botanical characters and
relationship are but little understood. Science is still seek-
ing to solve many of the elusive riddles of bamboo botany.
The bamboos are true grasses characterized by hollow or
rarely solid stems which are closed at the joints or nodes.
Some bamboos grow from 30 to 50 years or longer without
ever bearing flowers or seed. Curious to tell when certain
of the bamboos finally flower, many of the species die
shortly after blossoming. Great tropical forests have been
destroyed in this manner. These extraordinary plants soon
disappear after producing seed. It takes a long time to
reproduce again the forests which they once supported.
This peculiarity has prohibited the extensive cultivation
of bamboo as a commercial crop in certain regions. Grow-
ers might work for many years developing a fine grove only
to have it vanish as if by magic as soon as the strange plants
took it into their heads that it was the appropriate time for
them to bloom and die. The danger of such catastrophes is


not as great in the southernmost United States as in the
tropical and equatorial regions. None of the bamboos
studied by Uncle Sam during his 25 years of research have
produced flowers in this country.
Under American conditions, giant timber bamboos grow
to be 50 to 70 feet high and from four to eight inches in
diameter. This variety prospers in the South Atlantic and
Gulf Coast states; in California, Oregon and southern
Arkansas. It is hardy, a rapid grower and spreads easily
and quickly by means of its extensive creeping rhizomes.
Stake and forage crop bamboos, dwarf hardy bamboos,
fish rod bamboos, edible bamboos, clump bamboos and many
imported ornamental types are now grown quite extensively
in this country. The Department of Agriculture has in-
troduced, distributed plant specimens and popularized
most of these varieties.
Bamboo groves are extended by seed, by splitting up the
clumps and by cutting off and planting the rhizomes or
underground stems. Most of the plants in the United
States are now propagated by rhizomes. Federal laws
prohibit the importation of clump plants with large quan-
tities of soil attached because of the danger of introducing
foreign plant diseases.
For ornamental purposes, the bamboo is one of the finest
decorative giant grasses which now can be produced in this
country. It is also useful for screening unsightly walls
and buildings. It forms an excellent hedge or windbreak
as desired. The palm tree is called the prince of the plant
world. Everywhere that it grows, the bamboo is one of its
most intimate companions.
Florida faces a profitable future in bamboo growing. As
our other timber resources are depleted, we will rely more
and more upon this mammoth grass to supply our needs.
Bamboo culture is still in the experimental stage in the New
World. We have much yet to learn about this marvelous
semi-tropical crop which may approximately be called the
"miracle building material of the future." The use of
bamboo for the construction of bungalows and cottages in
tourist camps and for vacation purposes present unusual
opportunities. Inexpensive and durable buildings can be
made from this material. Every Florida grower should
raise one or more clumps of timber bamboo. He will never
fully appraise the importance of this fastgrowing crop
until he makes use of its products.


How to Grow Delphiniums

Some Suggestions Which Will Help You to Achieve Suc-
cess With This Lovely Flower

(Better Homes and Gardens)
OME few months ago I was very fortunate in visiting
the delphinium garden of Major Newell F. Vanderbilt,
San Rafael, California. Such a sight as met my eyes!
One dark flower, all the petals of which were of a deep vio-
let with a flat ivory colored eye, was a very effective del-
phinium. Here and there were scattered pinkish helio-
trope-colored clusters, the individual flowers fully two and
one-half inches in diameter, and very close together. In
the back of the garden I found a clear, sky-blue, as good a
blue as the well-known Belladona, but without even a sus-
picion of violet. The next smaller truss I took from a fine
plant of a very deep blue color with a darkish brown eye in
the middle of each flower, the effect of which, in the garden,
was a very pleasing contrast to the more usual light cen-
tered ones. A smaller flower with its head looking straight
toward heaven, was a glorious delicate pink. Then there
were the mauve and variegated satin finish light blues and
Now you may be able to buy vegetables, but you cannot
buy such delphiniums all a-growing and a-blowing in your
garden. The small amount of patience required for the
process is well rewarded, and I would recommend every
good gardener to start at once this fascinating hobby. The
vital point of raising delphiniums is to know how to ger-
minate the seed and how to bring them through the first
growth period.
The delphinium of today is one of the most beautiful of
all flowers, and provides a color of blue which is far too
rare among flowers. This has been the result largely of
careful hybridization combined with selection. It is most
rich in coloring, and its stateliness of habit is marked. We
know of no flower which exhibits more splendidly the va-
rious shades of that most lovely color-blue.


The forget-me-not is loved for its fresh azure, the gen-
tian for the shade which is called by its name, but the
delphinium possesses both of these in its repertoire of
tints, together with the depth of the sapphire and the hue
of imperial purple. And, as mountain snows shine more
resplendently in a setting of blue sky, so the striking
white central petals of the delphinium form the best of
all possible contrasts with the color of the surrounding
The foliage is shapely and classical in outline, possess-
ing a similarity to that of the acanthus, which it is sup-
posed was the model for the capitals in Corinthian archi-
The columnar spikes of bloom are freely borne, and suc-
ceed one another with a little management through a pro-
longed season.
The culture of delphiniums is simple. They thrive in
almost any position, and may be planted at any time of
the year, providing that in summer the plants are not too
forward and that they be well watered if the weather is
dry. September, October, February, March or April are
perhaps the best months for planting in this part of the
country (California).
A rich, friable loam will suit them finely, but any soil,
even hot and sandy, if well watered and manured, will
give excellent results. Dig deeply, trenching is better,
and add plenty of well-rotted manure. Plant about two
to four feet apart. Place in lines as a background to a
border, or in groups of say three plants at intervals in a
border. They also look well in beds as well, arranged
the same distance apart each way.
A succession of flowers may be expected from spring
to early autumn, especially if the soil be well prepared
and not allowed to get dry and the spikes which have
flowered early be cut down to the ground. Fresh growth
will then be produced, which will give further blossom.
Copious watering in summer will be attended by in-
creased size of spike and flower; in fact, in seasons of
prolonged drought and on some soils, water is absolutely
a necessity if the varieties are to exhibit themselves in
their true size and beauty of flower and spike.


Top dressing is greatly recommended on certain soils,
instead of the bare surface of the ground being left ex-
posed to the sun. Coal ashes strewn over the crowns
will protect the plants from slugs through winter and
spring. No amount of liberal treatment, however, will
cause the smaller flowered kinds of a few years back to
develop into the gorgeous hybrids of today, and even
such well-known kinds as Belladonna, though beautiful,
have not by any means the stamina or robustness of habit
which is a noticeable feature of the later hybrids, every
plant of which will, if properly tended, become a mag-
nificent specimen.
The native delphinium is scattered over the entire
world of the temperate zone, and journeying botanists
have classified about one hundred species from China, the
Himalayas, Siberia, Persia, Africa, Europe and America;
in fact, its natural habitat is limited only by certain zone
conditions. If one wants the fixed, constant shades, nat-
ural selections of wildlings furnish masses of never-vary-
ing color of the exact shades desired.
The newer hybrids offer every graduation of color
from palest amethystine tones through a myriad of vio-
lets, lavenders, pinks, blues, reddish purples, and on into
deepest gentian blue. No other flower presents such a
wide range of color shadings; in fact, no other flower
thus closely approaches the "four color" combination of
blues, whites, yellows or reds.
Delphiniums are extremely valuable early spring and
summer blue perennials, and the annual species continues
through the season on into late fall months-all an end-
less succession of appealing shades of the scarce blue
The D. ajacis is the well known annual type and is
widely grown. D. grandiflorum is the Blue Siberian spe-
cies, and is the most common, branched, beautiful and
especially tall and stately plant of the entire series. D.
hybridum, a profusely blooming deep blue type, comes
next as the usual garden variety, but whose origin is a
vexed question. It is probably related to the D. exaltatum
or D. elatum of Europe. And finally D. formosum, with
its still, formal, showy rocket shaped heads of deepest
blue, whose main claim is the intense blue color and pe-
riod of bloom when nothing like it properly takes its


place, is a plant of all the older formal gardens. But
there are many others. D. chinense is a profuse bloomer
and continues on into September. D. consolida is another
form, showy in masses of blues, but having only a few
flowers on each raceme.
Delphiniums associate charmingly with Madonna lilies.
As happy in association are the white Japan irises, single
or double. An effect of great richness has been attained
by using 'delphinium for a background and massing Iris
Yomo-no-umi and Monarda didyma in front. The deep
blue Japanese irises, and the charming sky-blue Kumo-
no-Sora, form, with delphiniums, a garden picture that
might well be entitled "a study in blues."
Single and double hollyhocks are also good for the
purpose; coming into bloom after the first flowering of
the delphiniums, their vigorous growth affords a cover
for the delphiniums during the latter's brief period of
rest and when they in turn experience the garden shears,
then shabbiness is effectively concealed by the luxuriant
second growth of the plant they have similarly be-


Quick -Growing Vines and


Editor of the Garden Department
(Woman's Home Companion)

SHERE is no kind of plant in the world that gives as
much for as little as does a climber. Trees alone pro-
duce above ground from a single stem and root clump
a branch and leaf system approaching the opulent spread
of practically every climber-but the root system of a tree
is as wide as its top, while the root system of a vine is
frequently no deeper and no wider than the roots of the
average perennial plant or at most of a small shrub.
Add to this characteristic the fact that many vines grow
more quickly to maturity than any other plant and the
possibilities and advantages of the entire class reveal them-
selves as altogether amazing! Yet more amazing still is
the comparatively restricted planting of them, the un-
imaginative use of them, notwithstanding these desirable
To be sure, vines are planted against porch columns and
on trellises and fences everywhere, on the ground in some
places, on garden structures and beside the trunks of dead
or dying trees. But rarely is a sun-baked spot treated to
a "tree" of a summer's production by the erection of a
sturdy post with cross-arms fastened to its top and sup-
ported by brackets, a mushroom arbor over which such a
plant as the rapidly-growing Kudzu Vine or a wisteria or
one of the ornamental annuals such as a Gourd or Cucum-
ber Vine or Hop or one of the Ipomea group (of which
Morning Glories are members) may climb. If the post
is ten feet tall the shady space beneath will have all the
characteristics of the shelter afforded by a good-sized tree;
seats and a table will make it a pleasant little garden ren-
dezvous. I have never advocated the use of dead trees in
this way, since the limbs are too likely to be broken off
under the vine's weight and come down on some unfortu-
nate's head.
The custom of the East, where the Vine-by which term
Eastern people refer to the Grape-is supported over wide


areas by the Olive trees set as we set an orchard, regularly,
and cut off straight across their tops when the desired
height is reached, is seen here now and then in the little
garden patch of a newly arrived resident, but so far as I
know the method has never been used in a garden of our
own folk. Nothing more delightful than the leafy roof
thus formed can be imagined. Though the olive tree is
not available here except in certain regions, the willow
furnishes an excellent substitute of similar habit and toler-
ance of sharp cutting back. The grapes grown in this
manner will be superlative in both quality and quantity.
The planting and care of climbing plants and "clamber-
ing" plants (as distinguished from true climbers which lift
themselves in one way or another) is simple; but good soil
well prepared is important to their success.
For the perennial and woody kinds make a hole twice
as deep as the roots need (or deeper if you have patience),
fill it one-third full with well-rotted stable manure, cover
this with top-soil mounded up at center, set the plant
(with roots spread out naturally) on this mound and fill in
next the roots with more topsoil. Then let the upper soil
be what it must-more top-soil if you have it, otherwise
such dirt as is available. The vital portions of the plant
are provided for; the surface of the ground does not
Apply manure annually in the fall and work it into the
ground in the spring. For flowering varieties use in addi-
tion a double handful of bone meal during the growing
season-which is after flowering with the early-blooming
kinds but before flowering with the late bloomers.
Prune out the oldest wood only; prune very little and do
the work immediately after flowering with the early-bloom-
ing kinds, while with the late-flowering kinds it must be
done the first thing in the spring. Heading in the ends
of growing tips of vines induces branching just back of the
cut, while removal of entire branches where they rise from
the roots or trunk induces lengthening of the remaining
portions. A wisteria held to one or two trunk lines may
be carried fifty to seventy feet in a single season, all the
way around a dwelling's cornice in Japanese fashion pro-
viding you furnish it with a little cornice trellis to twine
For lists of vines and climbers and soil and planting
requirements, send self-addressed stamped envelope. Ad-
dress Garden Department, Woman's Home Companion, 250
Park Avehue, New York.

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