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Wisconsin State Horticultural Society / Annual report of the Wisconsin State Horticultural Society for the year ending July 1, 1921
Vol. LI (1921)

Peterson, P. A.
The poplar trial orchard and my impressions of fruit growing in Douglas County,   pp. 66-69 PDF (1009.3 KB)


Page 67


WISCONSIN STATE HORTICULTURAL SocITr      .   67
This was effectively remedied in 1908 by laying over 9,000 feet
of tile. Tiling, on our heavy and seemingly impervious clay, was
something of an experiment and we had our doubts about the
water ever getting down to the tile after the trenches were filled
in and the earth settled, but it worked from the start and is still
working satisfactorily.
Another great trouble that we had before tiling was that the
warm rains in September would start a new wood growth, which
did not mature before cold weather set in and, therefore, would
freeze back each winter.
The orchard, except a triangular piece of about half an acre
that is cut off by a small watercourse, making it rather unhandy
to cultivate, has been cultivated every year, so this was seeded
down in 1907 and has been in sod ever since. It has proved to
be quite an object lesson, as the trees on that plot, although
manured several times and the grass left to rot down for many
years, the trees are less than half as large as where cultivated
and the fruit crop has been very light and of small size.
During the last three or four years we have put some manure
on the orchard and the results have been apparent by a more
rapid wood growth and healthier looking foliage. I believe that
the good yields in 1919 and 1920 were largely a result of this
manuring.
I would like to stop here, but if I am to tell the truth and
the whole truth, I must continue and tell the rest of the story.
Right from the beginning most of the trees showed a slow
growth and commenced to "black heart." In a couple of years
after planting we had only six or seven varieties of apples left;
most of the plums and only two or three cherry trees. Of the
varieties of apples now growing, there is only one that appears
entirely hardy and that is Hibernal. The others come in about
the following order: Duchess, Dudley, Patten Greening, Long-
field, (too small to have any commercial value), Wealthy and Mc-
Mahan. I would also like to include as being fairly hardy Yel-
low Transparent. These have not been tried out in the Poplar
orchard, but there are some in the Maple orchard and I planted
some about twenty years ago. They seem fully as hardy as
Duchess and so far have been free from blight. Of the McMahan
only a few trees remain, but these seem to do fairly well. The
Wealthys commenced to show signs of canker blight and decay
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