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VOL. XXXIV No 30.
Florida’s Delightful Summers Sometimes in talking with the old settlers they will tell you that the sum mer months are the most beautiful and pleasant of all the year. That the heap is no more oppressive in the summer months here than it usually is in the north. And then, the much enjoyable rainy season, coming as it does in June, July, August and Sep tember, at just the time of the year when it is so much needed to give new life to all vegetation. When our northern friends come here, in the winter, they don’t stop to think that Florida has her winter months as well as the north; that many of our trees lose their leaves; that the wild flowers are, most of them, miss ing. But when our rainy season com mences, all nature seems to put on new life. The gopher holes and the little sala mander mounds of yellow sand, so thickly scattered about through the woods, no longer appear to the eye, but all hidden with grasses and beauti ful flowers, and everything looks so fresh and green. It is summer time, and the woods are all in bloom, and the birds make music all day. And the aroma from the pine trees being brought out by the warm rays of the summer sun. Oh, how healing to one who has weak lungs. Is it any wonder that the poor consumptive soon finds health in our summer months? I am no prophet nor son of a prophet, but I predict that the time is not far distant when fair Flor ida will be the great sanitarium of the world. I have spent two summers in Florida and a part of the third sum mer here, and know what it has done for me. With a grateful heart I thank my Creator that there is such a place as Florida in the summer time. Through the rainy season here in Flor ida we have refreshing showers most every day, and after the shower is over how refreshing and how lovely all nature seems. With the air puri fied by our thunder and lightning, one feels like anew man. Northern people think it must be very warm here in the summer months, but it is not. Only three times the past year has the thermometer been above 93, and then one can al ways find a cool place in the shade. I will write you before long on the agricultural prospects of Florida, which is an interesting subject and one that should interest every one that owns an acre of land in this part of the State. The resources of Florida have never been but partially developed as yet, and it is beyond the mind of man to tell what it may be. Our pine forests should be well protected, and the universal cry should be, “Wood man, spare that tree.”—Titusville Star. Never buy a horse that drags his hind legs. The animal that gives his heels a clean, outward fling that shows his shoes, is generally a good traveler. The Evil of Shipping Green Oranges. ! I don’t know of anything that hurts the reputation of Florida oranges more than shipping them green. Did it ever ! occur to you, brother orange grower, that the very oranges you sell to some packer to go North are not fit to eat; | that these very green oranges go into a hot house and are made to look yellow, and are then offered upon every fruit stand in the city, with a big sign, “Florida oranges;” then when a man takes a dozen home for his family to eat, or one is being served in a hotel or restaurant, what do yon think he says when he puts it in his mouth? I really don’t think it would look good in print to repeat it. Now let us see what the results are. The consumer shuns Florida oranges like a “burnt child;” hotels and res taurants stop serving them, and the . - ... - - ... . result is Florida oranges are not want ed in the market until after Thanks giving or nearby Christmas. I have asked several shippers and growers how they expected people to eat those green things? The answer they gave me was: “Oh well, they do something with them.” Yes, T will agree that they do something with them. They remain in the retailer’s hands until he is disgusted with them, and he makes it a point not to touch Florida oranges until he is almost compelled to do so. We all know that oranges are not like other fruit —when not fit to eat can be used otherwise, for preserving, making pies, stew, etc. We, therefore, should not ship the finest oranges the world has ever produced in a green state, to disgust the lover and patron of our fruit. The only argument I Jacksonville, Fla., Wednesday, July 24, 1907. Picking Ripe Oranges. have heard in favor of shipping green fruit was that we dispose of that much, it is out of the way; the first and last cars bring the best prices, and the trade wants it. But how long does that trade want it? Also, how long do those big prices last? Just as soon as those big eastern or western cities get in a few cars they say, “No Flor idas for me.” Brother grower, don’t ruin the mar ket for the sake of a car or two of oranges that you may sell at an ad vance of 25 or 50 cents per box. You are a big loser in the end, and it costs the State hundreds of thousands of dollars. There is a pure food law now that may possibly cover that; but I feat not. Now is the time to take steps to stop this evil, and by united effort on the part of the orange growers we may accomplish it some way. I do hope some Florida paper will have the backbone to make an issue of it and fight it to the bitter end, and not wait till several cars have been shipped and then come out and con demn it. “An ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure.” 1 personally own nearly 200 acres in bearing grove, and I will not sell a box until it is well colored and fit to eat. But remember that I g.m only “a. drop in the bucket.” Let us orange growers unite on this issue and do all we can to oppose it all over the orange belt. Hoping this letter will be of benefit to the orange industry of Florida and some action be taken at once, I re main, Yours truly, P. Phillips, M. D. Some Mistakes in Pecan Culture. In writing of some people’s mis takes, it is merely to let other people hear of them, so they may not be re peated. It is a wise man, though, that profits by others’ experience, as we all usually wish to learn by our own. In the first place, hundreds of peo ple putting out pecan trees make many mistakes as to the soil best adapted to them. A great many have the idea that where the hickory flourishes, pecans will do likewise, and they are of the same family. Never was a greater mistake made. Usually hickory ridges are high and dry, and pecans will not do well there. They may grow very well while young, but there is an excess of ammonia on these ridges, and when the pecan trees get to be ten or fifteen years old, they will commence to die back —limbs all over the tree dying. I have heard this called the blight. It is no blight; there is too much ammonia—the land does not suit the pecan. If you had a few trees of same age just off the ridge, on the lower land, you would probably never see healthier trees. Do not put peach trees 011 a hickory ridge if you wish success. Land that is low and wet all the time, right to the surface, is not good land for pecans either, unless it was underdrain ed. Pecans do not do well on hard-pan, and positively are a total failure on “sand-soaked’* land, or quicksand, or extremely sandy land. There is probably no nut or fruit tree that will grow and thrive on so many kinds of land, and under so many different conditions as the pecan. The pecan needs water at from three to five feet to do its best. The best land in the upland is a good loam on the surface, yellow dirt under this and clay at from 18 inches to 4 feet. The deep, rich soil of the river bottoms where there is an overflow once or twice a year, but'where the water does not stand over a week or so, is where we find most of the largest wild trees, and many persons are of the opinion that this is the very finest land for the pecan. The trees certainly grow the largest here, but it takes a lifetime for them to bear, as everything tends to growth. On the uplands we get the grafted trees to bearing in three to five years and bearing paying crops in seven or ten years. The writer pre fers the uplands, as he wishes returns from his trees before he dies. After the mistakes in land are over, then come the mistakes in selection of the varieties to plant. If you plant seedling trees, your grove will never pay you, for about 40 per cent of your trees will never bear, ten per cent will bear faulty nuts, thirty per cent will be shy-bearers, and you will only get about twenty per cent of good bearing Established 1874.