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Mr. J. C. Plumb being called upon, said, he was, and had always been, very enthusiastic on the subject of entomology; it was a study very much neglected, and of which very little was known. He was in favor of doing as they are now doing in the Illinois reports, taking up some branch of this science each year and making it very plain and simple; illustrating it with cuts of the insects beneficial and injurious, so that even our school boys can understand it and learn to distinguish between our friends and foes. The trouble was to know where to begin. He also suggested that it might be well to give cuts and outlines of new varieties of fruit for further reference.
FRUIT-DISTRICTS.- Mr. Kellogg suggested a committee be appointed in relation to our fruit-districts, to select lists of varieties adapted to each, and to specify the conditions and rules that should he observed in their location and cultivation.
President Tuttle said it would be difficult to adapt lists strictly to the districts; for in each, there was a great variety of soils and locations which should modify the list and conditions; thought it best to defer the matter until we had heard the reports of our committee of observation.
CENTENNIAL EXHIBITION.-In accordance with a motion made by G. W. Putnam, of Ash Ridge, Messrs. J. C. Plumb, G. P. Peffer, G. J. Kellogg, and President Tuttie, were appointed a committee to consider the question of a worthy representation of Wisconsin fruit at the Centennial Exhibition.
President Tuttle was satisfied that if we took hold of the matter right, we could make as good a display of fruit as any of the States. Notwithstanding the exceptional year and early date of the Pomological Exhibition, our display was very creditable. Had it been two weeks later, we could have taken the first, instead of the third prize.
Mr. Stickney gave an account of what Iowa horticulturists were doing. Last summer they commenced to prepare wax specimens of their fruit; had already two hundred and forty varieties to exhibit in this way in the summer, before their fruit matures; were also preparing lignariums, showing all their different kinds of timber.
Mr. Plumb said that the wood of our trees and the fruit buds had fully matured the past season, and we had good reason to expect the largest crop of fruit we ever saw in this State. He thought we ought to take hold of it in earnest; if we did so, he had no fear of the result. Suggested that it would be well to exhibit the fruit from different parts of the State; as the southern, central, and northern portions, giving their latitude. The people at Chicago were much surprised to see the exhibition of fine grapes made from Green Bay and further north. The show of grapes sent to Chicago from Oshkosh, surpassed anything they had there. At the meeting of the Illinois Horticultural Society, they did not venture to recommend any variety of grapes for general culture but the Concord, and were much surprised to learn that we were able to cultivate so many varieties.
Mr. J. M. Smith, of Green Bay, said we could grow as good grapes in Wisconsin as in any State of the Union. He had seen much better display of grapes at fairs at Oshkosh, than was made at Chicago. They had grown good grapes seventy-five miles above Green Bay. It was years after the country was first settled before any attempt was made to raise grapes. Then a German attempted it, and everyone was surprised at the result. Now they regard it as the most sure crop of fruit; cultivators have failed to get a crop only once in eleven years. He said that with some, the Delaware was the favorite variety, yielding better than the Concord; gave an instance where a five-year old Delaware vine bore sixty-five pounds of grapes one season, and all of a superior quality. Men who had seen the fruit raised in California, and eastern fruit exhibited in the New York market, were surprised on seeing Delaware and other kinds of grapes for sale in the stores in the northern part of our State to learn that the fruit was grown in that vicinity; they admitted that in size of bunches and berry, and in quality of fruit it surpassed anything they had seen.
Mr. E. Wilcox, of Trempealeau, was very enthusiastic in respect to this Centennial Exhibition and wanted others to feel so too. We were proud of the record of the Iron Brigade in the war, threefourths of which was from Wisconsin; we could do equally well in a show of apples and grapes, if we only set out for it. We should exert ourselves to make an exhibition of fruit which would be creditable to the State; not copy the example of Minnesota, make a poor show at Chicago and a good one at home, He had been called a fanatic in fruit-culture, but he firmly believed, that in spite of all that had been said, we can grow good fruit. We have many difficulties to contend with, but by making special effort to secure hardy stock for our trees, and by selecting varieties that are adapted to the different locations, we shall succeed. Kansas, although she made a big show at the Pomological Exhibition a number of years since, had as great, if not greater difficulties to contend with. He had sent many trees of our hardy varieties there, crabs, etc., but the frosts, drought, winds and grasshoppers had nearly whipped them out of existence.
CRANBERRIES.--Mr. C. S. Whittier, of Camp Douglas, spoke of the great importance of the cranberry interest, and though much attention was now being directed to the subject, but little was known in relation to it, and he proposed that a committee be appointed to take the matter under consideration, and report to the society some plan of collecting information in reference to cranberry culture in our State.
A committee was appointed for this purpose, consisting of Messrs. C. S. Whittier, H. Floyd and J. T. Kingston.
Mr. Stickney thought that in view of the fact that much money was being invested in cranberry lands which were worthless, or nearly so, this committee should be instructed to make an exhaustive report. They should show how much and what land is adapted to cranberry culture, and give such information as will enable us to tell what is valuable, and what worthless, so that people may invest their money understandingly. He regarded the cranberry interest as of more importance than any other branch of fruit-culture in the State, except, perhaps, apples, and as we have a large area that seems to be adapted to its culture, a proper development of the business would do much to increase the prosperity of the State.
Mr. Whittier thought that the time would not permit the committee to make such a report at this session, but they would try to secure it at some future time.
INTEREST IN HORTICULTURE.- Mr. Smith had experienced much difficulty in keeping up an interest in their local horticultural society and wanted information as to the best method to do this.
Mr. Whittier, gave an account of the interest felt in horticulture by the Lemonweir Valley Society; they had held nineteen meetings in the last fourteen months, and had tried many experiments. There was no lack of interest with them; he thought much aid was derived from the rivalry, or commendable spirit of emulation between the different towns in the county.
Mr. Plumb said, that there was no interest !like self-interest for this purpose; by being wide awake and enthusiastic on the subjects presented, both at the meetings and elsewhere, much might be accomplished, but thought the surer way to arouse interest, was to develope the practical, and pecuniary benefits resulting from horticulture.
The society djourned until February 2, 9 a. m.
WEDNESDAY, 9 A. M. The society was called to order by President Tuttle.
On motion of Mr. Finlayson, Mazomanie, the committee appointed to confer with the agricultural society in relation to a joint convention, were also authorized to make the arrangements needed for an exhibition at the State Fair. This committee were instructed to ask the same terms and conditions as were made last year.
TREASURER'S REPORT.-Mr. G. A. Mason, the treasurer, was present, and handed in the following report: Annual Report of the Treasurer of the Wisconsin State Horticul
Feb. 4.. Voucher No. 77, Morrow's salary....
5 00 30 00 30 00
7 50 12 00 5 00
207 00 186 38
Respectfully submitted, MADISON, February 2, 1876.
GEO. A. MASON, Treasurer.
This report was referred to a special committee, who, after examination of the vouchers, reported it to the society as correct, and it was accepted and adopted.
The reports of the committee of observation were called for, and Mr. H. M. Thompson gave the one for the first district; the Secretary read those sent in for the fifth and eleventh districts, by E. W. Daniels and Samuel Rounseville.
UNUSUAL FORM OF APPLES. These reports alluded to an unusual deformity of apples the past season, and President Tuttle remarked that many variéties had made an excessive growth, so as to be recognized with difficulty; the Red Astrachan, and Seek-noFurther were especially out of shape, being heavily ribbed.
Mr. Stickney said that the Northern Spy and Red Astrachan were very much deformed in shape, and were very small and gnarly, but other varieties had made an excessive growth.
This extra development, Mr. Peffer thought, was owing to late summer growth; after the fruit had nearly reached its full size, the rains, and warmer weather came on, furnishing an extra supply of sap to the trees, which was forced into the fruit and it had to swell out as it could.
Mr. Plumb had never seen so great variation in fruit, both as to shape and color, is the past season; some varieties bore little resemblance to their usual appearance. At the Illinois horticultural meeting, there was an apple called a Greening exhibited, thought by some to be a new variety, but on cutting, it proved to be the Northern Spy. Where the growth is steady and uniform throughout the season, the apples are of the usual form and color; he agreed with Mr. Peffer as to cause of peculiar shape the present season.
Mr. Stickney read a paper on " Horticultural Observations."
PLUMS.-At the close of it he suggested noting down facts observed each day. He thought by so doing our committee of observation and each one of us would learn much, and could bring a good report to our next meeting. On visiting an orchard or nursery he always learned something; spoke of his change of opinion as to the merits of the Miner or Hinkley Plum; it had uniformly failed with him, and he thought little of it, but the past season he had seen trees loaded with good, fair fruit; he had come to the conelusion that the trouble was in the age of his trees; they do not bear well when young, and we should give it further trial.