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Electricity In Horticulture

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.Tust novv tho moiieyed liorticnltnral wovld is all excitemenl over Üio exporínients of Dr. G. VV. Slonwna in STfowing plants tlic illuminatiou of electric Hght, who speiit ycn-s of time and n ■iv.-i! amount'of nioney n tlic proíccution of his rosen relies. Ho isthe pos üssorofcxl insivejíH r leu fltn he has uot he i la tod i n theoxpendimru ofmoncyina svptein of expemnonts hitherto prosocui ! on a very i imito i scale. Tne learnetl Dr proeeeded in his experimenta witli tlie idea that electvicity might furnjsh all the reqiiisiie.-i 01' sunlight in thodovolojjiii ii of plant growth. I11I86I lLre-.Mtynon niade'lhe lir.-i experiment with electric liglit in thia direetion. íl' fonnd that tliis lighl appKed to plañís in bad) y llghtcd pincus resnlted in n groi Lh equal to luat when pltints hatl the benefit of Bunlight. Wolkoff, in 18Ö6, discoyered that creas grown in the dark and exposed to a few liourü of liglit produced by a Buiiscn buru r, tuniL'd green, the v.iuw na ií grovru iu tho sunlight. l}i Siojnons u Buuligbt of his own by phvciii an eloctric liglit of 1, 40Ü caadlo povTci1 in tlie midst of his plmits, aud at a distance oftwo metros, Uu foutid il equal to average daylight at tllu scasou ot' tlio year iu which lio was experinicutinj. JIc found tho re.-snlis the sanio su fiir as pluut devulopiucnU w.-is coiicerued, as thoimh the planta wore umlcr the direut iuílueuce ofdayliht. He found inore thau ihi.s - thc growth of yegetatiou was greatly accclürated. The electric liglit was found eom peten t to produou all ihc nieehaiiical etfects of dayliiht, wch as bringijig about Üie í'o-orection offoliago planta that "sleep" at iiight. Nature says that "dcodlngs of uiustaril which liad never Reeii daylight, were quite as green and Tigorou3 as whiuh liad never been subject to the artiÜuial light. The sime ivsult was showu by tlic foliare of carrots, and those vhii;U had beun illiiininated naturally by day and 'artifteially by niit liad leaves which weii palpably taller and greener llmn tliose whioh, whetlicr trom natural or ai-uíunal soui-cos, had ojnly enjoyed a smaller auiouut of ilInniinaiion." 'i'iio Londou Daily News saya that Di-. Sieiueus exhibited to an autfíenco belbre whoni he lectnred, ii'pot of tulips in bud, which the electric light biought into t'ull blooui 111 soino three quarters of an honr. Time and further expuriments vvHl dciiionsLiMte moro lully the actual valué oí' this discoveiy. lts application is Iimïtless - as it can be usud fo basten the grawth oí' plaats, fotingo, flowers, etc., so exten.-ivuly used durilig the winter, and now grown by hortieiil turista at great caro and expense, au.i which will always be iudemund by the wealthy. Thc application ot' electricity to plant growth iá another of these grand experimenta with this subtile lite power, as ive may almost cali it, going on to-tlay. llow it may atleet demoustrations in other sciontilic directions is uot easily ibretold, but in reiatiou to hortieultnre proLably the sunnuing np of Mature is pretty correct, lt says : "Its use in hortieulture will in nll probabillty be limited to the gardeus of the wealthy, wiiere there will be 110 difSculty in employing it to make plauts grow at doublé their normal speed ii' that is ever practically ibund worth wliilc. It may also perhapa be found available in accelerating and suoplementing the effect ot' our tardy and penuiious auidight in ripening fruit. But the scientiiic interese of its present application must rest mainly 011 tho l'act that the eyelo of tho tran8íbrmation of energy engaged in plant lile is íiow complete, and that, starting from the euergy stored up iu vegetable íüol, we can run through tho clianges from hcat to cleetrieíty, and thence to light, whieli we nor ki;ow ve can store iy iu vegetaole luol a'aiu."


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Ann Arbor Argus