The Garden Guide

Book: Gardening Science - the Vegetable Kingdom
Chapter: Chapter 8: Origins of Vegetable Culture

The objects of vegetable culture and propagation

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1123. The objects of vegetable culture are to multiply plants ; to increase their number and retain their native qualities; to increase their number and improve their qualities ; to increase their magnitude; to increase their number; to improve the quality, and increase the magnitude of particular parts of the vegetable; to form new varieties for the furtherance of all or any of the above purposes; to propagate and preserve from degenerating approved varieties of vegetables; and to preserve vegetables for future use. The first step for all these objects in common, is to procure the desired plant, either by removing it in an entire state from its native site, and planting it in an appropriate situation; or by gathering and sowing its seeds ; or by propagating from a part of the plant. Hence the general origin both of farming and gardening, and of all the different modes of propagation, transplanting, and collecting seeds. The next step is to secure the plants to be cultivated from the depredations of animals or unsuitable weather, either by surrounding them with an adequate barrier where they are growing fortuitously, or by removing them to a spot already protected. Hence the origin of fences and enclosures, and plant habitations. A third step, common to all the above objects of culture, is to remove from the vicinity of the plant to be cultivated, or from the plant itself, all other plants, or animals, or objects likely to impede its progress. Hence the origin of weeding, thinning, destroying insects, and curing diseases.