Excerpt from The Handy Book on Pruning, Grafting and Budding
The present work deals with a branch of horticulture which is often imperfectly understood, although a thorough knowledge of it is absolutely essential to success. No operation is less speculative in its results than good pruning, or more quickly and certainly productive of good results, enhancing not only the profits but the pleasure of horticulture. On the other hand, unskilled pruning or neglect of pruning causes mischief that cannot be repaired, and undoubtedlyreduces the annual produce of orchards and cottage gardens to a degree which must in many cases extinguish all chance of profit. For it' cannot be too strongly insisted upon in these days of keen competition and low prices, that profit from the cultivation of the land is not to be expected unless both industry and skill are employed.
Skill, undoubtedly, can be acquired by practice and experience, and cannot be perfected without them. But to learn from one's own mistakes is an expensive process, especially in the department of pruning, where 'one mistake may effect the productiveness of a valuable tree for the rest of its life. The fewer mistakes, therefore, the better, and it is with this truth in mind that this little book is written, for the benefit chiey, but not exclusively, of beginners, amateurs and untrained gardeners, and I recommend it most cordially to their attention.
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