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MR. BECK'S PRIZE PELARGONIUMS.

HOVEY & Co. Offer for sale all Mr. Beck's splendid seedling Pelargoniums, which have taken the first prizes, for three years, at the great exhibitions of the London Horticultural Society, and which are universally acknowledged to be the most distinct and beautiful ever produced. They have been imported at a great expense, and fine plants will be ready for delivery in October, in four inch pots, which will make handsome specimens for exhibition in the spring of 1848. The following are the names :Aurora,

Desdemona,
Competitor,

Zanzummin,
Hebe's Lip,

Isabella.
These six will be sold together for $12.
Gigantic,

Zenobia,
Othello,

Mustee,
Marc Antony,

Favorita,
Rosy Circle,

Margaret
A selection of six from these varieties, $6.
No less number than six will be sold this year.
All these varieties are described in the Magazine for January,

The pelargonium is one of the most elegant of all greenhouse plants, and is also finely adapted to parlor culture. These new varieties are remarkable for their delicate tints, and exquisite pencilling, and have carried off the highest prizes wherever exhibited. Plants packed so as to be safely transported to any part of the country.

HOVEY & CO.

page 41.

BULBOUS ROOTS.

The subscriber has now received, per barque Rose Standish from Rotterdam, a very large and choice collection of BULBOUS ROOTS, imported by himself expressly for his own retail trade.

The collection comprises many rare bulbs not generally imported ;among them will be found Gladiolus gandavensis and ramosus, Ixias tricolor and crocata, Iris susiana and pavonia major, Colchicumns, Frittillarias, Amaryllis, double white Lilies, &c. &c. The varieties of Hyacinths, Tulips, Narcissus, &c. have been selected with especial reference to their suitableness for room culture, and he feels assured that they will give satisfaction, as neither pains nor expense have bren spared in order to obtain the best roots ; and they will be found very far superior to those sold at auction, while the price will not be much above the average price of auction roots.

He also keeps a large assortment of Hyacinth-Glasses and Pots of Bohemian glass and Berlin ware, some of which were selected for him by a friend in Europe this last summer. The trade supplied on liberal terms.

JAMES HOGG, Oct. 1, 1817.

562, Broadway, New York,

OF

HORTICULTURE.

OCTOBER, 1847,

ORIGINAL COMMUNICATIONS.

Art. I. On the Study and Pursuits of Botany. By A. MITCH

ELL, M. D. In a Letter to the Hon. H. A. S. DEARBORN.. Communicated by Gen. Dearborn.

Dear Sir,- In the various branches of natural science, there are none of more ancient date than the study and pursuits of botany. The first account of plants may be traced to the history of the creation, by Moses; and from that period up to the birth of our Savior, when he noticed in his beautiful comparison of the lily of the valley, with the wisdom of Solomon, it continued to be a theme of study among the ancients, although rude in its conceptions and erratic in its views, it may be said to constitute the basis of this science; when the illustrious Linnæus, or the great northern light, emerging from obscurity, gave order and regularity to the study, which rendered comparisons more easy; and, from that date, the specific arrangement and physiology of plants engaged the attention of the most eminent men of the world, and laid the foundation of agricultural science.

The great civilizer of man was agricultural pursuits, and those patriarchal tribes which adhered to the strict rules of husbandry and agriculture, grew into power and became great and powerful nations, while the precarious subsistence of nomadic tribes, that have depended on the hunt and chase, are rapidly becoming extinct, and the time is not far distant when historical records will be the only proof of their exist

ene.

In order that the naturalist should practically benefit his country, his mind should be placed on those objects that may VOL. XIII.-NO. X.

39

be analyzed and turned into the channel of real and beneficial use to mankind, adding to his comforts, and generating a supply for his wants. The phenomenon of abstruse studies will not be hindered in its progress by such a course; the real development of useful facts will gather a stronger body, and interest alone will support the practical results. The science of horticulture has greatly improved within the last few years in our New England States; there seems to be a general dissemination of love for the culture of flowers; among our ladies, this high order of taste, which embellishes the mind, and strengthens the reflective powers, shows that a pleasing revolution is going on, which, we trust, will pave the way for research and inquiries in botanical science that will show a well arranged herbarium in every young lady's boudoir. In the analysis and study of plants, something new and pleasing is revealed at every step, and the different analogies gives a wide scope to the thoughts, historically pointing out many things of sacred interest. Thus, the Acanthus vulgare, or bears-foot, is supposed by Michaelis to be the herb which formed the crown for our Savior's head, in the mock derision of his tormentors; others of eminence suppose it to be the tree called the naba, or nabka, of the Arabians; the Shittimwood of Scripture is the black acacia growing in the valley of Sinai; the Arbor infelix is the tree on which the Romans hung their criminals; and the most ancient canoes are said to have been constructed from the bark of the Cyperus papyrus. The manna of Scripture is said to be produced by a species of Tamarisk; and by the camel's-thorn (Alhà gi maurorum;) a similar manna distils from a species of Celastrus, in India; likewise the common larch affords an inferior manna. Although those trees last mentioned produced a manna somewhat analogous to the manna of Scripture, yet its constituent principles in chemical analysis must have been different; as we have reasons to suppose that the manna which fed the children of Israel contained nitrogen, as putrefaction would take place if it was kept over night; this may be considered as an omnipotent design of their Great Preserver to combine all the sustenance possible in this species of food. The various trees which afford the manna could be introduced and cultivated with success in the tropical portion of our country. Amid all the wonders which unfold themselves in the great temple of nature, there are some in its arcanum which we can but imperfectly comprehend or analyze. The ascension and circulation of sap, to perfect the growth and nutrition of plants, has employed some of the most able minds, without arriving at any satisfactory conclusions. I recollect, in the month of April, 1840, that a phenomenon occurred to me which attracted my attention. Being out one morning on a ramble in my favorite pursuits, * I discovered a specimen of a bird which I was desirous of obtaining perched upon the loftiest summit of a white birch tree, Bétula populifòlia. A discharge of the gun brought down the bird, and, when stooping to pick up my game, I was much surprised at a continued shower of rain, in large drops, oozing from the bark of the branches of a large limb just above my head : this continuing unabated, I was forced to go from under the limb, to prevent my powder being wet when re-loading. As the leaves had not expanded, and the buds had just begun to germinate, I took particular pains to investigate the matter, as the sky was perfectly clear, and no more than ordinary dew on the grass. The location of the tree was near the base of a high hill, the ground very moist, and studded over with springs of water. The tree on examination proved to be of a healthy structure throughout, and no appearance of water dropping from the limbs of any other part of the tree except the branch alluded to; this, to all appearances, was sweating from every twig and ramification, from the junction of the limb with the main trunk to its termination. This continued for an hour, and I left. Returning that way late in the afternoon, the raining from the limb had but slightly diminished, presenting nearly the same appearance as when I left in the morning. By what law this singular ascension of the aqueous fluid could have taken place in a separate limb of the tree, I am not able to answer, as atmospheric pressure, the epidermis of the bark, are all combining obstacles to the influence of capillary attraction, without we consider the principles of hydrostatics. Time and perseverance will effect a great deal: thus we see the barren hills of your native state changed into luxuriant fields by the science of agriculture and ingenious labor, its orchards hanging with rich clusters of golden fruit, while its gardens are embellished with every hue of the gaudy exotic and indigenous straggler, which shows that systematic regularity is the governing principle which superinduces so much comfort and wealth among an active and enterprising people. With great esteem, I am, dear sir, very respectfully yours, AUGUSTUS MITCHELL.

* He is a distinguished ornithologist, and has furnished several hundred beautifully prepared specimens of birds from Florida 10 Maine, for the museum of the Natural His. tory Society in Portland.-H. A. S. D.

Hon. H. A. S. DEARBORN.

Art. II. Notes on Gardens and Nurseries.

Pomological Garden of R. Manning, Salem, Sept. 1847.The collection of fruits, gathered together after a long series of years by the late Mr. Manning,—though, at his death, the most extensive in the country,-has been augmented, by his son, by the addition of all the choicest varieties of recent introduction to notice. We recently availed ourselves of the opportunity to look over the collection, and passed a half day in noting down the characteristics of many of the varieties, --their vigor, productiveness, &c.

Mr. Manning will fruit upwards of two hundred kinds of pears the present season, a larger number than he has ever had in bearing, and among them some of Van Mons's numbered sorts, which now promise well. The fruit generally is larger and finer than in previous years, and some of the varieties have never been surpassed in size and beauty. A tree of the Marié Louise was literally loaded with fruit, some of which were of the largest size which this delicious pear attains. Many varieties received under new names have been detected as synonymes, but, as we hope to give our readers an article from Mr. Manning himself, we shall only allude to a few of these. More will undoubtedly be added to the list, when the fruit is mature enough to be eaten.

The Duchess of Orleans Mr. Manning thinks one of the best

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