Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 44.djvu/218

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208
THE POPULAR SCIENCE MONTHLY.

especial importance in Sacramento, Yolo, Placer, Santa Cruz, Santa Clara, Solano, and Los Angeles, in which counties more than half the table grapes are found. Two counties of the San Joaquin Valley, Fresno and Tulare, have planted five eighths of the total raisin-grape area of the State. Three wine counties — Sonoma, Napa, and Santa Clara —contain five ninths of the total wine-grape area.

In round numbers, then, the fruit and vine acreage of California in October, 1893, is as follows:

Citrus and semitropic 95,000
Deciduous fruits 200,000
Nut-bearing trees 25,000
Grapes 191,933
Small fruits 5,081
 Total 517,014

Having ascertained the total acreage, the approximate number of fruit-bearing plants of the kinds tabulated can be readily found. Orchardists set trees at different distances apart according to the soil and the variety: 12' X 12', 15' X 15', 18' X 18', and 20' X 20' can be found within a mile of each other. Walnuts and other strong growing trees are often set 30' X 30', with cultivated crops planted between for a few years. The above systems of planting give respectively the following number of trees to the acre: 302, 193, 134, 108, and 48. Of course, there are many other planting distances in general use. The ordinary rule of multiplying the acreage by 100 has never seemed to me sufficiently accurate, and I should choose 150 as more nearly representative of the orchards of to-day. Grapevines are planted 4' X 6' in the case of some varieties, and 4' X 8', 6' X 6', and 8' X 8' in ordinary vineyards. These distances give the following numbers of plants to the acre: 1,815, 1,361, 1,210, and 680; about 1,200 is probably a fair average.

Tabulated, with a fair allowance for the acreage planted in the spring of 1893, the sum of the whole matter is as follows:

Number of trees on 320,000 acres 48,000,000
Number of vines, etc., on 200,000 acres 240,000,000
Trees and vines of the plant of 1893 (about) 7,500,000
 Total number of plants (about) 295,500,000

The reader must remember that every one of these plants, excepting vines grown from cuttings, has been propagated in a nursery, set out by hand with more or less carefulness, and pruned and cultivated. About sixty per cent of the fruit trees are now in partial or full bearing; in the vineyards the proportion is probably somewhat greater.