rotten. The only remedy in this case is speedy amputation below the diseased part. Sometimes the force of the vital principle makes a stand, as it were, against the encroaching disease, and throws off the infected joint or branch. Such is the account given by Thiery, which evinces a power in vegetables precisely adequate to that of the animal constitution, by which an injured or diseased part is, by an effort of Nature, thrown off to preserve the rest.
Nor need we travel to Mexico to find examples of this. Every deciduous tree or shrub exhibits the very same phænomenon; for the fall of their decaying foliage in autumn, leaving the branches and young buds vigorous and healthy, can be explained in no other way. Yet Du Hamel laboured in vain to account for the fall of the leaf; nor is it wonderful that he or any body else, who endeavours to explain the physiology of vegetables or of animals according to one principle only, whether it be mechanical or chemical, should entirely fail. To consider the fall of leaves in autumn as a sloughing, or
- See his Phys. des Arbres, v. 1. 127.