The Vegetable Garden

The Vegetable Garden


  1. Force rhubarb by lifting crowns and replanting under glass in moist, rich soil, or by covering crowns in the open with manure.
  2. Prune soft fruits. Cut out thin old shoots from black currants. And thin young shoots from red and white currants and from gooseberries.
  3. Burn the prunings, and store the ashes dry to dust among seedlings. If cuttings are wanted, pieces 6-12 in. long, cut below a joint, can be inserted.
  4. Thin out the branches of apples, and any that are overcrowding.
  5. Stake young trees.
  6. Spray with caustic wash to destroy lichen and hibernating insects.
  7. Thin raspberry canes, tie them to supports, and mulch the surface soil with old, decayed manure.
  8. Top dress the soil round loganberries.
  9. Nail up wall-fruits. Prune outdoor grapes.
  10. Spray winter-wash well into the bark of fruit trees. Wear old clothes and gloves. Spray with the wind. Tar Oil washes axe easily the most effective.
  11. Mulch strawberries with manure.


  1. Prepare fish-netting or tiffany to stretch over peach trees to give ample protection. Wall-fruits particularly need this protection.
  2. Weed strawberries. Lightly fork the surface soil and dress witb strawy manure.
  3. Prune currants and gooseberries.
  4. Tie and nail fruit trees grown on walls. Peaches, nectarines, and Morello cherries flower on the young wood, and this should be retained.
  5. Cut away shoots which grow at right angles to the wall, and tie in the side shoots as evenly as possible over the wall surface.
  6. Train loganberries to fences, laying the stems horizontally.
  7. Head back stocks for grafting. Scions should be taken from the parent tree, and placed in the soil under a north wall.
  8. Damsons and quinces are best pruned this month, where required. Damsons make line shelter screens for other fruits in the small home orchard. They can be planted now.


  1. Fruit trees should be planted at once. Give a mulch of well-rotted manure after planting.
  2. Protect apricots and peaches on walls with netting.
  3. Grafting is best done this month.
  4. Make new strawberry plantations.
  5. Limewash fruit trees before the blossoms open, to keep down pests such as green-fly.
  6. Hoe between the fruit trees to destroy weeds and make the soil sweeter.
  7. Gooseberries and currants sprayed with paraffin emulsion will not be attacked by red spider and brown scale.
  8. Cut back autumn-fruiting raspberries to within an inch of the ground and give a top dressing of well-decayed manure.
  9. Summer-fruiting raspberries should be tied to supports.
  10. Stake all standard and half-standard trees. The tying material should pass between the stake and the tree.


  1. This is the time for aphis (green-fly) to become troublesome if warm days occur. Spray immediately with paraffin emulsion.
  2. Hoe between all fruits to keep down weeds.
  3. Finish grafting.
  4. New strawberry beds can be made this month.
  5. Pear fruits that appear swelled or “bottled” must be picked off and burned.
  6. Spray apples coming into bloom with lead arsenate to check apple-blossom weevil, codlin moth, and March moth.
  7. Never spray when the blossoms are open; you may kill bees.
  8. Spray black-currant bushes affected with Big Bud, with lime-sulphur mixture every other week.
  9. Prune figs grown on walls or railings outdoors. Cut out weak or dead wood.
  10. New fig plants can be put in this month, 8 ft. apart.


  1. Apricots, peaches and nectarines grown on walls need thinning. The number of fruits left depend on the strength of the tree. Generally it is best to leave one fruit to each sq. yd. Of wall.
  2. Watch for the magpie moth or gooseberry sawfly, and if seen, dust the bushes at once with Hellebore Powder, or spray with lead arsenate.
  3. Dress strawberries with superphosphate of lime.
  4. Place clean straw or long strawy manure between strawberry plants to keep the fruit clean. Remove runners not required for making young plants.
  5. All fruit trees on dry ground appreciate a mulch of manure round the roots.
  6. Morello cherries can be disbudded if needed.
  7. Raspberry suckers should be thinned out. Only enough to replace the old canes should be left, unless new plantations are wanted.
  8. Thin gooseberries, leaving the best fruits to ripen for dessert.
  9. Remove grease-bands from standard trees.
  10. Commence summer pruning.
  11. It is best to spray raspberries weekly or more often, while the flowers are opening, to prevent the appearance of maggots.


  1. Wall fruits need water at the roots, except in the case of apricots, which appreciate dry conditions.
  2. Cut out from apricots, peaches and nectarines breast wood. Syringe the leaves morning and evening with insecticide to keep off insect pests.
  3. Protect cherries and other wall fruits, and also strawberries as they begin to ripen by the use of fish netting.
  4. Gooseberries should be thinned out, and only a few of the choicest fruits left on each bush.
  5. Strawberry plants are at their best the first or second season according to the time of planting. A good plan is to remake a third of the strawberry plantation yearly, pegging down one or two of the best runners from each plant. Pot them in 3-in. pots later.
  6. The site of the early potato crop is a good place for a new strawberry patch.
  7. Loganberries appreciate a mulch of manure round the roots. They need plenty of moisture, and repay generous feeding.
  8. All large trees require mulching. Remove superfluous growths, and over-vigorous shoots cut back.
  9. Heavily-laden trees will need support.
  10. Watch for green-fly and spray immediately it appears.
  11. Young side shoots of red and white currant bushes must be pinched back.
  12. All surplus and weak raspberry canes should be pulled out.


  1. Remove surplus shoots from fruits of all kinds.
  2. Espalier and cordon trees must be summer-pruned, or they will lose their shape. Cut back the shoots to induce the formation of fruiting spurs. “Bud” fruit trees this month in the same way that roses are budded. Trees grown from pips or stones are usually worthless until they have been budded.
  3. Pears should be examined. Fruits that appear unhealthy should be removed and only the best allowed to mature.
  4. Strawberries require constant attention. Cut away runners not wanted. Layer others. Clean up the beds, and take away to the bonfire the straw that remains on the surface.
  5. Mulch and water wall-fruit trees.
  6. If apples are too crowded on the trees, thin to two or three at each joint.
  7. Protect soft fruit from birds by netting stretched over a framework of wood.
  8. Dress stone fruits with sulphate of potash.
  9. Moisture is necessary for the development of all fruits. In dry weather hoe between soft fruits, standards, and bush trees every week.
  10. Be careful when gathering soft fruits not to damage the bushes.


  1. See that sheds and trays are ready for winter storage of fruits.
  2. Strawberries of early fruiting varieties planted on a south border will produce very early berries.
  3. New strawberry plantations can be made where potatoes have been lifted.
  4. Wall fruits make abundant growth at this season. Tie in young wood wanted for next season, and remove the rest. In very dry weather give an occasional soaking with water, followed by liquid manure.
  5. Gather apples when they break easily from the tree on being lifted in the palm of the Jiand.
  6. Keep an eye open for the eggs of the lackey moth. This moth deposits eggs in a “bracelet” round young fruit stems. They should be crushed and destroyed.
  7. Take stock of bush and standard trees. Note the amount of new leaf and stem on each. If a tree continually makes exceptionally strong growth, but never has much blossom, dress it with basic slag after the fruit is gathered.
  8. Wall fruit should be protected from wasps and birds, and exposed to the sun as much as possible.
  9. Continue summer pruning. Fruit trees may still be budded.
  10. Late apples, pears and plums may need to be thinned out.
  11. Loganberry and Raspberry canes that have borne fruit should be cut down to the ground level. Tie the new canes to supports to prevent breakage in the wind.


  1. Clean up the orchard, and hoe the soil between young trees and soft-fruit bushes.
  2. Prepare grease-bands and put them round fruit trees.
  3. Prepare sites for new trees. Deep trenching is essential.
  4. All early varieties of apples and pears must be gathered.
  5. Sweet Cherries need little or no pruning. Cut away crossing shoots on standard trees, and spur back those shoots which are too crowded.
  6. Red currants and gooseberries should have all side-shoots pruned back.
  7. Basic slag, superphosphate of lime, kainit, sulphate of potash, bone-meal, and lime should be ordered for application in winter.


  1. Trench all land intended for fruit-growing and add lime in moderation.
  2. Planting fruit trees. The fine roots should take hold of the soil before the cold months of winter.
  3. Watch for signs of diseased trees. Canker should be cut right out and burnt.
  4. Gooseberry and currant cuttings can be planted at any time now in sheltered positions.
  5. New plantations of raspberries can be made from suckers detached from old plants, planted 3 ft. apart each way. Keep the soil hoed between the roots.
  6. Apricots, cherries, currants and gooseberries should be pruned this month.
  7. Cut out old fruit, leaves and the naked old wood of figs to make room for the new shoots.
  8. Loganberry stems which have borne fruit should be out to ground level if not already done. Space out the new stems well in retying.
  9. Strawberry runners should be removed from the plants.
  10. Cut out all weak and useless canes from outdoor vines and shorten the good ones to two or three buds from the base.
  11. Untie wall fruits and wash the walls with soft soap, sulphur and paraffin. Replace the fruits with fresh ties and nails.


  1. Plant currants and gooseberries now, after thorough preparation of the soil. They thrive best and give the finest results in rich well-drained loam. Early and late varieties should be planted to give a succession of fruit.
  2. Cut away old wood from black currants, leaving stems of one season’s growth only for next year’s fruit.
  3. Dress all fruits with kainit (except strawberries).
  4. Figs on walls can be thinned out.
  5. Spread short strawy manure between the rows of strawberries, Prune all orchard fruits as soon as possible.


  1. Prepare the ground for new fruit trees. Planting can only be done during mild spells.
  2. Cut down newly-planted grape vines to within 12 in. of the soil Spray tree trunks with tar oil winter wash.
  3. Prune and re-nail wall fruits.
  4. Order new fruit trees.
  5. Dress with winter fertilizers as required. All orchards appreciate an annual dressing of lime, enough to whiten the soil surface.

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