in War by L. j. KING, M.A., F.R.H.S.
nUR1NG this past month or so 1 1-• have stressed the need for early lifting of potatoes as soon as they are ready. This vital and substantial crop should not be left to take any risks. Get it in (if you have any, such as late maincrops, still to be lifted) and store carefully. There is always extra risk of disease at this season, arid a light sprinkling of flowers of sulphur over the tubers in the clamp goes far to aaleguard them. So does a half-day's good sun-allying.
Beet cannot stand much frost when it is mature, and indeed there is little to be gained by leaving the roots in the ground from now on, quite apart from the risk of frost. So lift without gashing or bruising, and store carefully in sand or fine earth, preferably in a shed oi outhouse. Surplus top-growth can he trimmed off, though opinions do differ on this point with beet.
Carrots, too, can be stored in this way when mature, as they mostly arc by new. Store in the sane: way. except that the tops in this case must certainly he cut or wrenched off. Young roots Of beet or carrots can still be left to make what growth they can ; they are hardier than full-sized ones.
Among flowers them is no need to lift dahlias unless you wish. But immediate steps should be taken to mark the position of each variety ; at the first real touch of frost the foliage is unrecognisably blackened. Then the stools can be lifted, and the label attached to wire oi cotton threaded through the actual stem above the tuber. If you merely tie the label to the stem, it will fall off when The lattei shrinks.
AS WINTER APPROACHES
Though autumn may be protracted, any starry night may bring ruin to marrows, and tomatoes and similar . plants outdoors; don't go bringing everything in, however; you just need to keep a weather-eye open. Last year tomatoes ripened well until at least the end of October outdoors. But if you know that frost is coming on in earnest one of these nights, don's hesitate to be on the safe side and get in a substantial portion of these crops.
Celery, though we are accustomed to (Mink of it as a winter plant, is only hardy when left unblanched. Our treatment of it is somewhat unnaturally weakening. So for
protection and for stimulating the lengthening of stalks we should earth up gradually, always leaving a nice tuft of green above greund to feed the plant and to encourage further growth, Celeriac does not need earthing.
Yet, while in some respects it can be ruinous, frost is a great helper. Those with heavy soils should leave the surface of any spare plot (and these are increasing every week now) rough and open to the influence of the weather. There is nothing better. This is especially advisable where you are going to plant a fruit tree or two.
When going to plant fruit trees and bushes bear in mind that, once planted, they can't normally have any soil or root treatment, So dig a nice big hole now, wide enough to accommodate all the roots there are likely to be—and this depends on the type and variety of tree—just about two feet in depth. The bottom of the hole should be deeply broken up and left to the pulverising influence of frost. Perhaps a little wellrotted manure helps to give a send-off: too much is a mistake. The trees will not be planted till after leaf-fail in November, but preparations should be made now, Trees may be very scarce this year, and Labour is certain to be. Su send your order in good time. Some nurserymen specialise only in fruit ; these are probably the best for you. Among apples Lox's Orange, Laxton's Superb and Duke of Devonshire are the best for dessert; these three provide a succession. Grenadier, Bramley's Seedling, Lane's Prince Albert and Annie Elizabeth are perhaps the best cookers, also providing a succession. The last two arc also good to eat late in the season, Among plums Cam and Victoria are good for the small garden, with Dertniston's Superb as a high-class dessert which yields heavily. The aristocrat of damsons is the Shropshire Prune Damson; Farleigh Prolific is the hardiest, and a colossal yielder. Conference is the best allround pear, and will pollinate itself. Seabrook's Black is a good, safe blackcurrant, Laxton's Perfection a heavy-yielding red currant. Whitesmith, Whin ham's Industry and Keepsake arc excellent home gooseberries, though Bedford Yellow is perhaps supreme for flavour as a dessert berry. Lloyd George is a splendid raspberry. Royal Sovereign and still more King George are thoroughly dependable strawberries. Other varieties are sometimes specially suited to one locality, but these are good anywhere.