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The craftsman
Volume XXVII, Number 5 (February 1915)

Lewis, Gertrude Russell
A stately house,   p. 493 PDF (287.6 KB)

Page 493

fully that orchids have been crossed and recrossed and a vast number
of hitherto unknown types placed on the market. Tropical orchids
have been raised from seed both in England and in this country with
as much facility as the newer types of gladioli. The operator ac-
quaints himself first with the individual structure of each flower and
then imitates closely the ways of the insect world. The pollen taken
from one flower is placed on the stigmatic surface of another chosen
to be the seed-bearing parent. The bloom selected for cross-fertil-
ization should have its own pollen removed; it need not be destroyed,
however, but used to cross another plant. The golden dust of the
orchid world must indeed be valuable. Sustained care and delicacy
of touch are needed in the successful fertilization of orchids. The
work is not difficult. But to the amateur who tries it for the first
time the excitement is great when the bloom that he has fertilized
fades to be replaced by a capsule containing seed. Patience then
must not forsake him for the seed must still be sown and its offspring
tended carefully before the flower that he has helped to create is
unfolded for his delight. Will it fulfil the high hopes of the operator,
adding one more to the already long list of orchid marvels; will it
line his pockets with gold; give his name to posterity? Such are the
questions he asks himself while pondering perhaps on the mystery
of an orchid capsule, a South African species containing over a million
and a half of tiny seeds.
                 A STATELY HOUSE
THEY built a stately house and dwelt therein and men said,
"All their tastes are gratified, how happy they must be."   And
they came and went and were not satisfied, for they felt that they had
no abiding place. And they bought more things for the house.
Not until there came a birth did they begin to feel the sheltering walls.
   But once came Death, who took the best beloved, and as he went
he set the great seal upon the house where they had lived and made
it Home.
                                     GERTRUDE RUSSELL LEWIS.

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