Obrazy na stronie
PDF
ePub

to be read at their meeting, on the 8th of that month, when the author was present to have given any explanation that might have been required, as far as he was able, and that any of the members of that Society might ho an opportunity of seeing the effects of the operation, when the fruit was upon the trees. As that was not done, for reasons best known to themselves, and fearing it might share the same fate if given to any other particular society, he resolved to give it to the world at large, where he still had hopes it had a chance to meet with some more friendly, and, though a stranger, might be taken in. But, as in this case, he could not be present with every one into whose hands it might come, it became necessary

to enter into some explanation.

As many inquiries are made how I was

led to this practice, I find it necessary to

give some account of it.

First of all, then, I was led to it by a saying I had frequently heard, “that May mists were injurious to the frujo As I never either admit or reject a common opinion without evidence, I set about satisfying myself by observation, when I found it in some measure just. The next thing

that occurred to me was, in what manner it

became injurious.

Upon examining the blossom, I found a small worm in almost every one, which had not shed off, as in dry windy weather, but had curled together, and formed a nidus for the vermin; not but the vermin settling

in the blossom will produce this effect, but

moist weather is certainly more favourable

for it.

I next inquired whence the vermin proceeded. By observing that the blossom

mearest the trunk and large branches was

first attacked, I concluded that the vermin

came from the tree itself. I was farther confirmed in this opinion by observing that the old trees were more infested than the young, and that all the trees were first and most infested nearest the root, where the

bark was most cracked and rent.

In putting it to the test, I found it put beyond all manner of doubt: for, in performing the operation of peeling, I discovered thousands of the ova of these insects,

which, as appears by a miscroscope, are a beautiful transparent globe, perhaps the

most perfect in nature.

I frequently found the worm which had deposited them along with them, sometimes alive, but oftener dead: and I found them generally so securely lodged under the outer bark, sometimes in the inner and inmost, and even into the wood, that I saw no possible means of destroying them but by taking off the outer bark, and even the inmost, and part of the wood, where they had penetrated so far. The only obstacle that now presented itself was, the danger of killing the tree, and thus rendering the cure worse than the disease. This, however, I considered as nothing but a common prejudice, which required nothing but courage to oppose, because I had every encourage

ment nature could hold out to me. I had

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small]

Experiments have been made in different countries to ascertain how trees were nourished and received their increment; but none of these, so far as I know, were conclusive, or could possibly be so. These experiments were, barking the trees; by which it was found that the trees all died in three years after. But this, so far from warranting their conclusion, (that the trees. are nourished solely from the bark, and received their increment by the periligneum being every year converted into, and consolidated with, the rest of the wood,) that it sets it completely aside; because, if the trees had been mourished solely by the bark, they could not have lived three years; and

G

« PoprzedniaDalej »