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REPORTS OF LOCAL SOCIETIES.
BROWN COUNTY HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY. This society is still in active operation, meeting frequently and laboring to advance the interests of horticulture in this section. President–J. M. Smith, Green Bay. Secretary-W. Reynolds, Green Bay.
FREEDOM HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY. The following are the officers of the Freedom Horticultural Society for the present year:
President-Charles Hirschinger, Baraboo. Vice-President—M. T. Nippert. Secretary—W.C. T. Newell, North Freedom. Treasurer-August Bender, Baraboo.
GRAND CHUTE HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY. At the fourth annual meeting of the Grand Chute Horticultural Society the following persons were elected officers: President-W. H. P. Bogan. Treasurer-L. Briggs. Secretary-D. Huntley.
The meetings held by this society have been devoted mainly to the discussion of small-fruits.
JANESVILLE HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY. The following were elected officers of the Janesville Horticultural Society for the years 1875-6:
President-Alexander Graham. Vice-President-Geo. J. Kellogg. SecretaryE. B. Heimstreet. Treasurer-D. E. Fifield.
We have at present thirty-eight life-members. Our annual fair was held in October, 1875, at the same time with the Southern Wisconsin. The show of fruit was very fine; in the floral department the display, both in quantity and variety, far exceeded anything of the kind ever held here.
LEMONWEIR VALLEY HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY. The Lemonweir Valley Horticultural Society held its second annual meeting at Tomah, January 18, 1876, and elected the following officers:
President–J. F. Freeman, Tomah. Vice-President-J. P. Sheldin, New Lisbon. Treasurer-C. H. Grote, Mauston. Secretary-Dr. H. Allen, Tomah. TrusteesC. W. Potter, Mauston; Mrs. E. Wescott, New Lisbon; C. W. Kellogg, Tomah.
The society has held eight meetings during the year, at which six or eight essays have been read, five set speeches delivered, and one or more discussions held at each meeting.
MADISON HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY.
The society's working force having been reduced, by circumstances beyond its control, it was deemed best to suspend active work for the time being. It is now resolved to revive the work for the present year at once.
The following officers have been elected for the year 1876: President-William T. Leitch. Vice-Presidents—Joseph Hobbins, Edward Thompson. Corresponding Secretary-Mrs. H. M. Lewis. Recording SecretaryF. W. Case. Treasurer-Timothy Brown.
RICHLAND COUNTY HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY.
The society met at Richland Centre September 23, 1875, and elected the following officers for the coming year:
President-D. L. Downs. Vice-President—W. Dixon. Secretary-G. H. Putnam. Treasurer-John Winn.
SAUK COUNTY HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY.
The following have been elected as officers of this association. President-S. W. Grubb, Baraboo. Vice-President—John Rooney, Freedom. Recording Secretary–J. N. Savage, Baraboo. Corresponding Secretary-Wm. Toole, Excelsior. Treasurer-D. E. Palmer, Fairfield. Executive CommitteeJohn Dickie, Jr., H. H. Howlett, A. M. Petty, A. C, Tuttle, and C. Hirschinger.
ST. CROIX VALLEY HORTICULTURAL ASSOCIATION.
This society held its annual meeting in the village of River Falls, and elected officers for the current year, as follows:
President–S. M. Davis. Vice-President.--J. W. Winn. Recording SecretaryOsborn Strahl. Corresponding Secretary-R. J. Wilcox. Treasurer—M. D. Proctor. Executive Committee-0. C. Hicks, E. 8. Whitehead, John Green.
WINNEKAGO HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY. The officers of this society are:
President—John O'Brien. Vice-Presidents–J. R. Paddleford, Wm. M. Morgan. Treasurer-R. D. Torrey. Secretary-R. J. Harney. Corresponding Secretary-E. S. Hayden. Executive Committee—A. G. Lull, G. A. Randall, M. Whitemarsh, Isaac Miles, J. R. Paddleford.
The above officers were elected at the annual, January meeting, and R. J. Harney, chosen as delegate, to represent the association in the convention of the State Horticultural Society.
ADDRESSES AND PAPERS
BEFORE THE WISCONSIN
STATE HORTICULTURAL SOCIETY,
Annual Meeting held in the Agricultural Rooms, Madison, Febru
ary 1, 2, and 3, 1875.
ANNUAL ADDRESS BY THE PRESIDENT,
A. G. TUTTLE, BARABO0.
Gentlemen of the State Horticultural Society:
The constitution of your society makes it obligatory on the president to deliver an annual address. I am persuaded that the framers of that instrument could not have foreseen the exigencies that would arise in the history of this society, or they would have made no such provision. Occupying, by singular mistake of the society, the position of president, I attempt to perform a duty which should have been given to abler hands.
Friends of horticulture, we meet again, after the labor of another year, to exchange friendly greeting, and by bringing together our several experiences, to gather from them, if possible, something of truth, to guide us in the performance of the great work we have undertaken--that of supplying our State with a good variety of the leading fruits adapted to general cultivation.
The past year may have been, to some, one of discouragement. Yet I trust it will prove in the end to have been one of progress.
If our efforts are directed to the promotion of the great and important interests of horticulture, rather than private, selfish interests each year will show certain and satisfactory progress. The task we have undertaken may seem to some impossible of accomplishment, and very many are even now predicting certain failure; but what great work ever undertaken, has been carried forward to completion without opposition of this kind? The faint-hearted and irresolute may give up in despair, yet we know this, that the Almighty never designed our fair State-unsurpassed by any other in fertility of soil and beauty of scenery—to remain barren of luscious fruits; and we know, too, that He often makes use of human instrumentalities for the accomplishment of His purposes. There may be many and great discouragements, yet each new triumph adds to our faith in ultimate success. There are many truths well established now, where all was doubt and conjecture a quarter of a century ago. We have attained a better knowledge of what is necessary to insure success in the various branches of horticulture than we once had.
In the orchard, the dead and dying trees stand as monuments of our ignorance of the proper varieties to plant, or of the proper soil and location upon which to plant them. Our State extends over a large area in which modifying conditions of soil and climate determine, in a great measure, our success or failure. Along the lake shore fruits can be grown that cannot be grown in the interior, and in the interior, many do well which fail entirely in the northern portions of the State. Then again the soil has much to do with our success or failure. The low, level, rich land of the timbered valleys and the prairies, or lands quite sandy, are unadapted to many kinds of fruit that do admirably upon the clay ridges or high rolling timbered land. In fact, very good locations for fruit and very poor ones often lie side by side. The proper selection of a site for an orchard is of the first importance. It may be desirable to have it located as near the dwellings as possible, yet the best soil and location should be selected, no matter upon what part of the farm it may be situated.
There are very many portions of our State where the apple can be grown with certainty, bringing much larger returns of profit than any other farm-crop. What we need most now is such varieties as are adapted to localities where failures have been general, where the extremes of climate, in connection with an unfavorable soil and location, have made fruit-growing unprofitable. In such districts crab-apples are being extensively planted, and many of them will prove of value, but never can supply the place of the common apple; to supply this want, the earnest efforts of the horticulturist should now be directed. It may be supplied by new seedlings grown upon our own soil, or by the introduction of fruits from countries where the climate is similar to our own.
I have strong faith in the new Russian varieties of apples lately introduced, and that out of the several hundred varieties now being grown here we shall find a few, at least, that will prove of great value, such as we can recommend as “iron clad," and that will not prove a failure the first severe winter.
The object of this society is to bring together fruit-growers from different parts of the State, so that from their aggregate experience we may be able to give such advice to planters as shall enable them to plant intelligently and with a reasonable hope of success and profit. Great care should be taken that we do not mislead; no consideration of a private nature should be suffered to weigh against that of public good. The recommendations of our society have not always proved reliable, and one of the reasons why they have not, is the vast difference in different locations and soils in adaptation for fruit-growing even in the same locality, and large quantities of trees are being planted every year upon places where they are sure to prove a failure. Our list already recommended may do well, and be all that is needed for the best fruit locations, but I think a separate one should be made for such places as require hardier varieties, and coupled with each list a description of the proper place, soil, etc., on which they should be planted. This may seem to some unnecessary, but the mass of the people are wilfully ignorant upon the subject of fruit-growing, and every thing should be made so plain that" the way faring man, though a fool, need not err therein." Our list for unfavorable places may be very small, embracing perhaps only one variety beside the crabs, but if so, let it be confined to that, and let us add to it only as we become satisfied that we have those that will prove worthy.
It wili require more skill and care than the average planter will bestow upon it to make some branches of fruit-growing a success upon the mucky soil of the valleys and low plains, or upon light sandy soil.