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THE ARGUS, MONDAY. SEPTEMBER 23, 1907.
Creator of Plant Marvels!
LIFE AND WORK OF LUTHER BURBANK, TAMER OF THE 1
DESERT CACTUS. I
Remarkable Achievements of the Man Who Predicts the Thorn
less Variety Will Become the Great Fodder of Arid Re-
I gions Poppies of Vast Siza and Bewildering Beauty.
. Wonderful Results In Fruit Experiments Quick
I, and Decided In His Method of Workina.
ITTHKU BURBANK, California's
cifbrated creator of plants,
v. h.i delivered an address on
f.hc ictus at the rceont nation
al iiiiir.iii. a congress, made the pre
diction i ; ; l l the thornless variety
would li'Y'.i'j.-; l!ie great fodder of arid
Mr. BuriML-'h. has been called a wiz
ard, but the i "!vi is misleading, vrlte3
George W'ha : u James in the Circle,
There is no vi'.urdry in his achieve
xnents. Yet to accompany him to his
cactus patch and there see the great,
heavy leaved desert plant, so covered
with fierce thorns that even to stand
near it makes one squirm, and then to
follow step by step where in different
sections he shows the cactus slowly
losing its thorns until you stand before
a group into which ho suddenly dives
headlong, taking the great leaves and
rubbing his face and hands against
them this does seem like magic,
i It is evea more pleasing and equally
surprising to sit at his table and have
Berved to you the fruit of this samo
cactus, the prickly pear of the Indian,
'but whqv free from thorns and
changed from the tasteless, fibrous,
eeedy fruit to a richly flavored, juicy,
delicious table luxury,
f In his garden not far from the cac
tus patch is his wonderful crimson
rhubard. Here is the popular pie
plant, with stalks two inches thick
and growing all the time, winter and
summer, so that the nblquitous pie
may bo made fresh from the garden
all the year round.
; Gorgeous Creations.
i Are you interested in flowers? Then
comi- u'l-l look at these gorgeous and
ftplr'i iirl creations. Here are poppies,
bed ..i i- i- bed of them, all under test
,ThW l.isi bed is about fifty feet square,
and Ihetv are about 2,000 plants in it.
Hero tiiv p. ppies the like of which
were in v. r .vrn before since the world
began- lal'i id, the results of cross
ings upjn wLi !i Mr. Burbank has been
working for y-.ws. There are no two
alike. Tho are wonderfully di
verse, and thv. v. nolo foliage and blos
soms bewikki. us by their strange di
versity. Somo of these poppies are vast in
size. Seven of them placed 6ido by
side vertically are as tall as a tall
man, eight as high as a giant, and one
could hide completely behind a dozen
of them. In color they are a mass of
crimson and black and white, with
many intermediate blendings. and. un
Jike the ordinary poppy, which blos
soms only for two or three weeks,
these are perennials and flower all the
The amaryllls also shows the marvel
ous life power of his work. In a few
years he has developed it from a small
flower with a few inches of breadth to
nearly a foot In diameter, with every
shade of crimson, pink or scarlet and
many astonishing color combinations.
.. Whole Plant Changed.
But to do this the whole plant bulb.
stem and leaves, had to be changed.
It seems like magic to the ordinary
mind to see the gradual transforma
:' tion of a small bulb to one four times
its size and five or more times its
weight and with its power of multipli
cation increased eight to ten fold. To
watch the development or creation of
$ new stem is equally magical. The
fid amaryllls stem could never hava
held these large new flowers, bo a
stocky, strong, low stem was created.
Burbank has taken the lily and work
ed wonders with it. I have stood side
by side with him looking at a bed of
lilies upon which he had worked for
twenty-six years. "You are looking
with me upon flowers that the eye of
man has never seen before." And then
one by one he tenderly touched a Bcore
or more of them, calling attention to
their wonderful colorings, differences
in size, leafage, etc.
Ills achievements with the daisy are
more fascinating than a fairy tale.
From England. Japan, Germany, Aus
traliaeverywhere that daisies grow
he got seeds of the best varieties,
not a few. but hundreds, thousands.
These were carefully planted and
watched. They were all going to be
slain, but out of their death was to
come a new daisy, larger, more beau
tiful, more hardy and that would flow
er in every climate perennially. The
result was his Shasta daisy, one of
the most beautiful flowers ever seen,
of clear brilliant white, great size, the
center of pure yellow, resting upon
slender yet strong stems.
Many Seeds For One Experiment.
Ten thousand seeds required for this
one experiment? Yes, and often the
10,000 become 50,000 or 100,000 of
DOO.000 before he gets what he wants.
It is this large dealing that has dif
ferentiated Mr. Burbank's plans from
those of other men.
He speedily learned that great re
sults are not to be obtained from in
adequate methods. The 10,000 daisy
seeds were only a starter. Millions
and millions of daisies were grown
from these seeds, and It was only after
the experiments were completed and
the habits of the Shasta permanently
fixed that the experimental plants were
In vegetables he has produced equal
ly wonderful results. As elsewhere re
lated, the potato that bears his name
was his first achievement. Tomatoes.
forage plants, sugar beets have felt
his magic touch to the great enrich
ment of the world.
In fruits his labors are startling.
lie has made a giant plum, rich and
delicious in flavor, Juicy, hardy, a pro
lific bearer and the largest known.
His prune is full of sugar, larger, ear
lier and more productive than the best
of the old varieties. He wedded the
plum and the apricot and has given to
the world the plumcot, which com
bines the hardiness of the plum with
tho rich deliciousness of the apricot
Pineapple Flavored Quince.
The same process has given us a
quince with the flavor of the pineapple,
thus increasing the fruit value of the
former. He is working on the black
berry, and we shall ultimately receive
at bis hands a large, rich, luscious
berry two or three inches in length, al
most seedless, with thornless bushes
and a flavor rich and delicate.
On bis proving grounds experiments
by the hundreds of thousands are go
ing on al! the time, some of them not
completed, though they were begun
twenty and even thirty years ago.
Luther Burbank's early life in Cali
fornia was attended by many hard ex
periences. He was very poor and was
obliged to take any work that came to
hand. He cleaned out chicken coops
helped in market gardens, got an odd
Job here and another there, passed
through a very severe illness, went on
the tramp for work, until finally ho
was able to start a little nursery on his j
own account Then all at once he dldi
something that made those who knewj
about it look at him. An order came I
for 20.000 young prune trees. Could
he fill it in nine months?
Fine Prune Orchard.
He hadn't a prune tree on his place.
and how was he going to supply 20,000
in nine months? He got together all
the men and boys he could find to
plant almonds for him. They grow
rapidly. When they were ready he
had 20,000 prune buds ready for them,
and in a short time the prunes were
budded Into the growing almonds, and
before the time was up the trees were
delivered to the delighted ranchman.
And I have seen these 20,000 prune
trees. They are growing today, and It
is really one of the finest orcnarus in
Before he disposed of his business
his returns were $10,000 a year. Then
he sold out. What for? To rest? To
take a holiday trip? No. Now he was
ready to give his whole life to the ex
periments he had been dreaming of
Unt it Is a well known fact of all his
tory that the dreamer and experiment
er is seldom a money maker. So it
was with Burbank. Ills experiments
were costly. Soon his Interest money
was all gone. lie began to use up tne
nrlnolnnl. Year after vear he worked
on, now and again letting the world
know of some new discovery. Ills for
tune began to dwindle, yet he never
faltered. lis determined to keep on as
long as his money held out and, said
he in talking to me of this period:
I was willlnz to begin over again u
I had to. I 'felt sure I could earn
enough to live on, and if not. If I had
grown too old and feeble. Trovidence
would see that I was cared for m
some way or other."
Rapid Tester of Trees.
In his method of working Burbank
is aulek and decided. It was my privi
lege to be with him during one morn
ing in his proving ground at Sebasto-
pol, some seven miles from his nome.
Row after row of young plum trees.
covered with fruit, stood before us.
Two assistants were with us, one with
n handful of white cords and one with
a handful of brown or black ones.
'These are all grown from the same
seed. Now see how they differ."
ne nicked a few plums from the
first tree. Rapidly he looked at one.
carefully tasted it and said, "Kill." I
had scarcely got my teeth Into the
first plum when he was on to the next
tree and the next and the next with a
rapidity that was simply astounding.
His keen eyes, trained to scientific ac
curacy, saw at what seemed to me to
be one el a nee all the attributes of the
tree. One taste satisfied him as to
texture, juiciness and flavor of the
fruit and thus almost In a moment he
had decided whether that tree was
worth keeping for further experimenta
tion or was to go to the bonfire.
Almost as fast as I can write it the
words fell from his lips, "Kill," "Keep,"
Keen." "Kill." "Kill " "Keep." The at
tendants followed and put on the white
or black strings which denoted the fata
of the particular tree.
Beginning of His Labors.
A little history of tho very begin
ning of Mr. Burbank's labors is sure
to be interesting to those who like to
know how the primary Idea of great
achievements was born.' ne was but
a mere lad in New England when the
first thoughts of pjant development
and improvement came to him. He
saw that all the apples on the same
tree were not exactly the same in size,
color, shape, Juiciness, flavor or fiber.
He gathered from one rosebush
roses that, while of the same species,
were larger, smaller, redder, paler in
tint, more fragrant less fragrant than
others on the same bush. Potatoes in
the same hill were of differing shies
and quality and flavor, and so on.
This led him to the conclusion that
if by selection or cross fertilization
these better fruits or flowers could be
stimulated the whole product would be
While these thoughts were bubbling
In bis brain he was a market gardener
and was growing potatoes, and he saw
that out of a batch of potatoes in his
field there was but one which bore a
seed ball. He decided to experiment
with the seeds.
When he came to pick the ball It was
gone. In despair be was about to go
away and give up when he decided to
make a search for it. Soon, to his de
light, he found it where doubtless some
wandering dog had knocked it as he
rushed through the garden.
World Renowned Potato.
The experiments began and soon de
veloped the now world renowned Bur
bank potato, from which millions have
been made and which has given cheap
er and better potatoes to the world.
Yet he sold it to a local seedsman for
That was bis start, and he was not
yet twenty years of age. Then a sun
stroke made a partial invalid of him,
and all his life seemed to be changed.
For his health he was shipped off to
California, and here he had battles and
struggles that would have daunted and
discouraged any but the most deter
mined and sincere.
To most people Burbank appears shy
and reserved, almost to diffidence and
timidity. He is shrinking in a sense,
but let questions be put to him about
Ws work or his thought and his an
swers aie as clear, sharp and decisive
as those of any man I ever knew.
There is no, aggressiveness or self as
sertlveness, but a definiteness and clar
ity that show he has thought long and
deeply and come to all bis conclusion
tor himself, yet he has the spirit of a.
ILLINOIS SEPTEMBER BOOKINGS.
24 The Man of the Hour.
20-27-28-29 The Flints.
BOOKINGS FOR OCTOBER.
Oct. 3. Little Yennie Yensen.
Oct. 4. Primrose Minstrels.
Oct. 6. Slow Poke company.
Oct. 7-9-VM1-12. Van Dyke-Eaton
Oct. S. The Lion and the Mouse.
Oct. 13. Tempest and Sunshine.
Oct. 14. Rig Hearted Jim.
Oct. 15. Fiddler's Contest.
Oct. 1C Coming Thro' tho Rye.
Oct. 18. Bethany home entertain
Oct. 19. The Grand Mogul.
Oct. 20. The White Blackbird.
Oct. 21. Kerry Cow.
Oct. 22. Charles B. Ilanford.
Oct. 23. The Sweetest Girl in Dixie.
Oct. 25. The Girl Over There.
Oct. 27. Royal Slave.
Oct. 30. Miss Alberta Gallatin.
Oct. 31. The District Leader
The Man of the Hour. Y nthor
play produced in the United States in
A SCENE FROM "THE MAN OF TH,
many years has been the subject of
so much favorable comment and en
thusiastic commendation as The Man
of the Hour, "which hag been running
since last November In New York
City, and which will be given hero
in the Illinois theater tomorrow even
ing by a cast containing not the nam?
of a single actor who is not in the
vernacular, "way up", in the profes
sion. Here are some examples: Wil
liam Winter, the veteran critic of the
New York Tribune "A play, at, last,
that means something." William
Archer, the Celebrated London crit'c
and essayist "A play that Is alivo,
"To hide true worth from public view
Is burying diamonds in their mine;
All is not gold that shines, 'tis true;
But all that IS gold OUGHT TO SHINE!"
The poet merely states strikingly the
Any GOOD store, or barga in, or thing,
or offer, or quest should be advertised!
"To hide true worth from public view" is
not good business policy.
forcible, direct and unmistakable."
Bronson Howard, dean of Aniericau
playwrights, author of "The Banker's
Daughter," "The Henrietta," ami
"Shenandoah" The. best play yet
written by an American writer."
The Flints. Commencing Thursday
of this week the Flints are to come
here for four nights. This is the best
opportunity to be had to shake off tho
blues and thoroughly enjoy a hearty
laugh. Everyone who conies away from
an entertainment Riven by the Flints
does so completely satisfied. For the
laughter is genuine, and there is no
trace of anything coarse or low in it.
There will be one full admission on
every ticket, the holder of which is
accompanied by a lady the opening
At the Elite. Manager Friedenwald
offers a new bill at the Elite tonight,
consisting of Marvin and Thomas, a
clever song and dance sister act, Le
Maire and Le Maire, the great Jewish
comedians who always make a hit,
Hugh Whitcomb, monologuist, and the
- - v
E HOUR," AT THE ILLINOIS
Schaar Trio, trick bicyclists, who are
considered the best trio of bicycle rid
ers in the world. Illustrated song by
Al. Wallace, the Australian tenor, and
the latest moving pictures complete the
bill. The American Newsboys' Quar
tette were the guests of Manager Frie
denwald last night and occupied a box
at the Elite. The quartet is the orig
inal one composed of Faulkner brothers
and Leonard and Holden.
Advertised Letter List.
Advertised list. No. 38, for week end
ing Sept. 21:
Mr. Ahrens, Mrs. E, Anderson, Wil
liam Bradley, D. R. Beatty, J. Brech
beii, Tom Brown, Mary E. Browne,
Stanley Crossley, James Dallncr, Mrs..
H. Eckhart, Miss M. Frazier, Thomas
Farley, Edna Graham, E. B. Gibson,
Mrs. V. H. Harding. Samuel II. Huu
low. Mrs. Elmer Hersh, Briggs Hinton,
J. H. Kochliar, Charles E. Kyte, Mrs.
Frank Kranskoft (2), Mrs. Jasper
Lindsey, Miss Ethel Mous, G. V. Mc
Danial, Mrs. A. V. Murphy, Mrs. John
O'Haren, Loucious Pfouts, If. D. Phoe
nix, W. Pahlon , Mrs. Jean Simons.
Miss Ella Styles, Mrs. Lena Shipp,
Mrs. A. Tony, Rev. J. Van Stappen,
John Wooiey, Mrs. S. A. Walke1-,
Charley Wilson, Bert Walker.
Foreign: Agda Hansson.
HUGH A. J. M DON'ALD,
A Humane Appeal.
A humane citizen of Richmond,
Ind., U. D. Williams. 107 West Main
street, says: "I appeal to all persons
with weak lungs to take Dr. King's
New Discovery, the only remedy that
has helped me and fully comes up to
the proprietor's recommendation." it
saves more lives than all other throat
and lung remedies put together. Used
as a cough and cold cure the world
over. Cures asthma, bronchitis, croup,
whooping cough, quinsy, hoarsenes3
and phthisic, stops hemorrhages of the
lungs and builds them up. Guarantee!
at W. T. Hartz's drug store, 301 Twen
tieth street 50c and $1.00. Trial hot
Rheumatism Cured in 24 Hours.
T. J. Blackmore, of Haller & Black
more, Pittsburg, Pa., says: "A short
time since I procured a bottle of Mys
tic Cure. It got me out of the house in
24 hours. I took to my bed with rheu
matism nine months ago and the Mystic
Cure is the only medicine that did me
any good. I had five of the best physi
cians in the city, hut I received very
little help from them. I know the Mys
tic Cure to he what it is represented
and take pleasure in recommending it
to other poor sufTerers." Sold by Otto
Grotjan, 1501 Second avenue, Rock Is
land; Gust Schlegel & Son, 220 West
Second street, Davenport.
Could Not Sleep
Mr. A. J. Filkins of Newark,!
N. Y., tells of a permanent cure by
Dr.fl.W. Chase's Nerve Pills
When a man states in the most posi
tive terms that Dr. A. W. Chase's Nerve
Pills was the only medicine out of all
that he used that gave him health, nat
ural strength and steadiness of nerves
and concludes by saying he can "hon
estly say" It, he means It, and Just
what Mr. Filkins isays hundreds of
others have said In letters to us equally
as strong. Mr. Pilklns says: Dr. A.
W. Chase's Nerve Pills is the only medi
cine that helped me. I was In a very
bad condition. My nerves all unstrung
played out from care, nervous, excit
able and unable to sleep at all nights.
Nothing seemed to take hold until I
got Dr. A. W. Chase's Nerve Pills.
They have done me a world of good,
steadied my nerves, given me strength
and sleep. I needed them badly enough,
and can honestly say the pills have
been, a great comfort to me. I can also
say they are sure and reliable. I am
only too glad to recommend them." 50c
a box at all dealers or Dr. A. W. Chase
Medicine Co.. Buffalo, N. Y.
For Sal at Harper House Pharmacy.
Tuesday Evening, Sept. 24.
Messrs. William A. IJMdy and Jost ph
H. (Jrismer Make Known
The Man of the Hour
A PI. AY OK Mom;it I I hi:,
As I'laycd Four Months at the Illinois
I'KICES $1..V. $1.00. Tie, 50c; box
seats, $2.00, Seats ready.
OmiCTioN CiunBERUN.KiNDTa Conruiv.
Four Nights, Commeneiiifj
Thursday, Sept. 26,
lrinl F.iiKiiKiut'nt of ihc Wurld'a .'a
rmx.it am iia(.ks i;irri.v.
New Faces, New Scenes, New Sorgs.
New Sayings, New Dances, New
rillCES 1 r. L':c. 3.1e ind r.Oe. .So;.ts
reserved at theater, l'lioin; west TH.
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday.
Mnrvil nml 1'huinuM. sistt r team.
Maire nutl ,t lnirr. Jewish
Hugh hlrmb. monnlocist.
The ;rcut Si hnnr Trio, tri k bi
eyelists. Illustrated Somen ly Al Wal
laee. the Australian tenor.
The 1 .11 tent Mfivlnc I'ietnreM.
T MntineeN. Sundays and hol
idays, 2:a) and 3:43.
Reserved Seat 20c
W h e n 3
G. H. Kingsbury
1703 Second Avenue,
Where you will find a Complete Line
of hoth New and Second Hand Books.
i rsir STfiT