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Tree-planting Associations, happily suggested and successfully carried out by Mr, Northrup, of Connecticut, who should have 'many followers in Obio. Your attention is especially directed to his pamphlet. *

Under the happy influences of the tree-planters the cemeteries of our land are everywhere becoming the quiet resting places of the dead, sheltered by umbrageous trees, instead of the forlorn, desolate, and neglected fields of the past, so unworthy of the title, God's acre (Gottes Aker), and so díscreditable to our boasted civilization.

Public and private parks are being set apart for the special culture of these beautiful natural objects, and they become the most agreeable resorts, and are means of instruction for the people. All these encourage a love for trees and increase our knowledge of them, and to that extent are necessary to forestry.

In this, however, the people of our country bave much to learn. The general want of familiarity with our sylvan wealth, either collectively or individually, is a matter of surprise to those who have made this matter a study.

Upon this occasion it may be admissible to refer more particularly to a single tree, which is destined to become a factor of no mean importance in the future forests of our land, and through them to solve one of the great problems of the iron road—the cross-tie question, and the future supply of sleepers.

We may be pardoned for having a State pride in this tree, for though not a native of Ohio, it was here that the distinctive characters of the Speciosa Catalpa, the Western species, were first pointed out and presented to the public. It was here that it was first planted and distributed by General Wm. Henry Harrison, who brought it from its native home on the Wabash. It was here that its merits as a perdurable timber were published by him at an agriculturai meeting in Hamilton county, when he urged his fellow-farmers, as early as 1825, to plant the tree extensively for its great value as timber.

It was in Dayton, Ohio, that its great beauty as a shade tree was observed by Dr. J. Haines, who propagated and distributed the plants that now ornament the streets of that city. In 1853 it was recognized as distinct from the Catalpa of the nursery men, that had been brought from the Eastern States, and was then publi-hed in a magazine devoted to horticulture and rural affairs,t that was printed in Cincinnati.

By B. G.

* Tree-planting Econonic and Orvamental, and Village Improvements. Nortbrop.

+ Western Horticultural Review, Aug, 1833.

The brothers Teas, enterprising nurserymen, next propagated tbe tree and distributed it widely. Further honors to the Catalpa and to our State have resulted from a great devotion to the timber interests mani. fested by Mr. E. E. Barney, of Dayton, who has bestowed much time and money, in the most disinterested manner, in the collection and diffusion of information* respecting this valuable tree, and in sending out its seeds, some of which have reached far distant lands on otber continents.

From all which it appears, that though itself a native of another region of our country, the merit of the introduction of the Catalpi speciosa is due to the intelligence and energy of the citizens of our own State. Though it is not pretended that we have originated or created a new tree, we have presented one to the world that hd heretofore escaped the observation and notice of the botanists—a tree of which it is said (by one who knows that whereof he doth affirm), "Every day's experience establishes me more firmly in the opinion that it (the Catalpa sp ciosa) will prove to be one of the very best, if not the very best tree in the Middle American States, and with a southern limit very far beyond any of our Northern trees." But let us now address ourselves more especially to the question before

“Is it time for us in Ohio to plant trees for timber ?” Yes! Yes, truly, and most emphatically, my dear fellow countrymen of Ohio, the time has fully come when we, the inhabitants of this glorious possession, should, as a duty, plant trees for timber.

Certainly we already have many warnings that it is indeed high time for us to set about doing something toward the restoration of the forests which the necessities of agriculture and the ad sancing wave of civiliza tion bave so rapidly diminished within a century of occupation, in extensive regions of our noble State.

The clearing of the land was a necessity for its occupation and application to agriculture. In this matter every land owner must be left free to decide for himself and for his own acres. No man nor set of men may let nor hinder him from destroying or restoring his forests; nor can his movements be controlled by legislative enactments as in other countries, since the policy of our republic is that of non-interference. But we have also an axiom in our policy, that the best plans are ever those which conduce to the greatest good of the greatest number of the people; and whenever these may be presented in acceptable form, it is hoped and believed that such propositions will receive support.

So great is the American statesman's confidence in the general good

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* Facts for Information on the Catalpa Tree.

sense of the people, and in their capacity for self government, that all great questions may be safely left to the popular tribunal.

When new propositions happen to be presented to the people for solution, however, they may sometimes need a certain amount of educational training and enlightenment to prepare them for a wise decision.

The present theme is, perhaps, one of that character to our fathers and to many of ourselves, who have lifted up axes upon the thick trees and prostrated those princes of the forest which had for centuries reared their proud heads and reigned as monarchs of all they might survey. Those of us who have laboriously cleared the land of these encumbrances have triumphed in the unequal contest, and may well congratulate ourselves on having released the fertile soil from its forest thraldom, to receive the vitalizing sunshine, and to smile for us with productive farms and happy homes, surrounded with luxuriant fields of food-crops for man's use, convenience, and enjoyment. Flushed with our triumphs over barbaric nature, such may ask, "Why plant more trees and again relegate these smiling fields to the bondage of the savageism of the for: est times?"

No! This clearing of our fertile lands is, indeed, right and proper; it will go on, and it should continue, for a certain period and to a certain extent. Whatever this extent may be must depend upon so many circumstances connected with the physical conditions of a wide extent of territory, that the problem becomes difficult of solution, and requires, for its .proper consideration, a knowledge of many branches of natural history. It need not now be discussed. Sufficient, that man's experience and observations in other regions of the globe will aid us in attempting a solution. From these we learn that from one-fifth to onefourth part of any considerable stretch of country should be occupied by trees in order to produce the best results in the physical conditions necessary for the greatest productiveness of the soil, and for the highest development of humanity. Applying this to our own State, let us ask, how is it now in Ohio in this respect? What is the ratio, at present, between the wooded and the cleared portions of our State? The statististics of this important problem are not so complete as we could desire, but such as they are are well portrayed in General Walker's Atlas of the United States Census of 1870.

In his message of last year our Governor graciously devoted a brief para. graph to this subject; a subject indeed, of so great prospective impor. tance to the future destinies of the millions who are to tread upon the soil of Ohio, that our chief executive, and our legislative bodies, as well as the humblest citizen, might profitably make it a subject of laborious and continued study.

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It appears that in the course of seven years the area of the woodland in Ohio was reduced from about nine and tbree quarter millions, in 1870, to a little more than five million acres in 1877.

This shows that more than four million acres of woodland, nearly onehalf of that returned by the last United States census, has been destroyed in the brief period of seven years. Should these figures prove to be correct, they show a frightful destruction of our woodlands, which must be followed, in the future, by their legitimate results of altered and deteriorated climate, diminished fertility and productiveness of the soil, in some places approaching barrenners, in the drying up of springs and streams, with irregularity in the flow and discharge of our navigable rivers, and, eventually, in the relegation of our fertile fields to barrenness and desolation." * * * Wbat has been may again and will again recur.' The most fertile regions of the old world, when subjected to similar treatment, have reached this sad result under the infliction of such ill treatment and abuse of God's gifts; it is but a question of time when the sad but inevitable results must follow, and our now fertile plains be reduced to deserts.

The traveler, Champollion, when speaking of the great desert of Sahara, in Northern Africa, where he had traced the course of former rivers and streams, and had found stumps of trees covered by several feet of sand, makes the following remark: “And so the astounding truth dawns upon us that this desert may once have been a region of groves and fountains, and the abode of happy milions.” * * * He asks, “Is there any crime against nature which draws down a more ter. rible curse than that of stripping mother earth of her sylvan covering? The hand of man has produced this desert, and, I believe, every other desert on the surface of the earth. Earth was Eden once, and our misery is the punishment for our sins against the world of plants. The burning sun of the desert is the angel with the flaming sword who stands between us and Paradise.”

The countries bordering on the Mediterranean, on all sides, were once well wooded, sertile, fruitsul regions, sustaining a dense population. With the centuries came the undue destruction of the forests, and the consequent loss of fertility, followed by diminished population. Look at the famous regions to the eastward—Palestine, the land of groves, the land that flowed with milk and honey ; see the adjoining regions, now marked by the mighty ruins of Palmyra and the cities of the plain. Beyond these, see the broad fields of Persia, whence Alexander drew his mighty armies, and observe the once fertile valleys of the Tigris and the Euphrates, where stood the luxurious Babylon, the Great, but Fallen; all these once populous regions are now deserted, and, literally, became the habitation of bats and owls, in fulfillment of prophecy, clearly traceable to the destruction of the forests! Even in our own favored land, here in this New World, these scars upon the face of nature already be. gin to appear, and in some places on the Atlantic border tracts of farming land are already turned out as unproductive wastes.

Yes, verily, my friends, it is indeed time that we were thoroughly aroused to the importance of this matter of the conservation of our foreste. We should plant shade trees and groves, shelter belts and woods; yes, and where suitable conditions exist, we should also plant extensive forests for the sake of their future prospective, but certain benefit to ourselves and those who are to come after us. Why will we not learn from the experience of past ages, which is everywhere expressed so plainly in the history of nations, and impressid so manifestly in the desert scars of the earth?

Let us take warning betimes and begin now, and at once undertake the preservition of our forests.

Forests are the conservators of moisture, the sources of the streams. “The tree is father to the rain," was a favorite saying of Mahomet.

Then, again, we must remember that time is needed for the production of a tree. The botanists call them perennial plants, because they continue their existence through the years. Vegetables of this class do not build up their messy structures, composed of concentric layers of solid fiber cells, with the rapidity of the fungi, some of which will evolve mil. lions of their cells in a few hours, visibly enlarging while we behold.

Nor can the trees be compared, in iheir periods of growth and the quickness of their cash returus, with the fimiliar tillage crops of the agriculturist. The weeks and months needed for the production and perfectiog of garden and farm crops are represented by the decades and centuries of years required for clothing the denuded surface with forest growths of mature and useful size. It is, therefore, high time to begin the work.

Be not discouraged, however. Trees grow fast enough. One of the classic writers of the age, who fully appreciated trees, put his own sentiments into the mouth of one or his rustic characters when he wrote: “Be aye sticking in a tree, Jock, it will be growing the whiles ye are sleeping.'

Those of us who are now past middle life, no doubt many of you now present, can point to noble trees which have grown within your own recollection; some of them, perhaps, were planted by your own hands. Strange as it may be, however, it seems nevertheless true, that old men, those who can not expect to see nor to reap the fruits of their

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