ART. II. On
grafting Ipomoeas, and particularly Ipomoea Horsfalliae.
I PRACTISE grafting ipomoeas, in order to get plants with as little trouble possible of Ipomoea Horsfalliae, which does not strike roots so readily as some others of this graceful family from cuttings, and laying is not always convenient in ornamental plant stoves. The process of grafting is quite simple, and, to a person versed in the subject, it would be quite sufficient to say that cuttings of I. Horsfalliae were grafted on the spare tubers of I. insígnis, or on those of any other species in that section; but to the amateur it may be useful to state, that, when the shoots of I. Horsfalliae begin to grow in the spring, and when the eye is just ready to push in a young shoot half an inch long, is the best time for this operation. Then cut the scions with two eyes, the upper one to form the leading shoot, and the lower one to help the union with the tuber; cut the scion or shoot just below the joint, and cut out a slice an inch long on the opposite side to the eye. Then take a young tuber, and cut away a slice to correspond with your graft; fit them close together, and tie them tight with a piece of matting; pot the tuber in as small a pot as you can get it into, using very light soil; set the pot into a hot frame, or merely into the stove, and in a few days the union will be complete, and your plant will go on just the same as if it were on its own roots from the first. A few side tubers can easily be spared from an established plant for this purpose; but for the nurseryman, or where a great number of plants are wanting, the following is the best and shortest way to go to work. At any time during the growing season, take as many cuttings as you want plants, of I. insígnis, or of the species of Ipomoea which Mr. Low of Clapton introduced from the higher parts of the Brazils, which is much hardier than the I. insígnis, and in all respects a better stock for I. Horsfalliae than I. insígnis. They will strike roots in a fortnight; and in a short time they will form young tubers, like those of young dahlias; then shake them out of the pot, and graft them as above. Or any practiced person may take the young points of the current season’s growth and insert them in the bottom of the cutting, instead of in the tuber, and they will take just as well; but when this plan is adopted the cuttings ought to be divested of their bottom eyes when first put in, otherwise these eyes will be found troublesome in pushing up and contending with the graft.—Kingsbury, March 16, 1839.
We earnestly recommend Mr. Beaton’s very excellent article to the attention of every young gardener. Ipomoea Horsfalliae was first raised in England in 1832, at Everton, near Liverpool, by Charles Horsfall, Esq., from seeds received either from Africa or the East Indies; and it was named by Sir W. J. Hooker in compliment to Mrs. Horsfall, and figured in the Botanical Magazine, t. 3315. It was afterwards figured in the Botanist, No. 31., and in the Floral Cabinet, vol. i. p. 61. It is one of the most splendid of climbing plants; and Mr. Beaton has shown how it may be multiplied by hundreds.—Cond.