Obrazy na stronie



Tong, cwte. profitable quantity of manure to apply to our crops. Every one present acknowledges the principles of

Second Experiment, high farming-we must be liberal to the soil if we Steamed bones and Peruvian guano

6 1 expect it to be liberal to us. But within the last | Dissolved bones alone

6 7 two or three years there are many instances in the

Third Experiment best-farmed districts of Scotland in which these Dissolved bones alone

5 171 principles have not been judiciously carried out. Steamed bones alone

5 191 Owing to the high price of farm produce, and the facilities afforded of obtaining manures, the error

Fourth Experiment

4 with the best farmers has been rather over-manur

Leone guano alone

5 121 ing, producing an over-luxuriance of the cereals, Leone and Peruvian very much to the loss of the farmer. By all means Last summer a small quantity of guano from the let as much manure be applied as will give the West India islands was sent in for experiment by most profitable return to the farmer; but having the Messrs. Cunningham. Turnip sowing, was ascertained the quantity that will produce that nearly over when it reached me; but still I detereffect, let care be taken that it be not exceeded. mined to try the experiment on a portion of a clay Were the cost of a ton of turnips to be counted up field in not first-rate condition. on son:e farms of particular kinds of soil, and

Tons. cwts. where large doses of manure had been applied, 4 cwt. of Peruvian guano per 4

o of tops. considerable astonishment would be felt at the ex

imp. acre, gave....

| 13 11 of roots. pense. in some cases which came under our ob- 8 cit. of West India guano per 2 15 of tops. servation this season, we found that the cost of

imp. acre, gave .....


10 of roots. raising a ton of Swedes was 12s. Now, turnips 2 cwt. of Peruvian and 4 of 3 7 of tops. selvom pay more than 6s. or 7s. per ton when used W. Indian per imp. acre gave / 15

1 of roots. for feeding, and this year there are not many feeders that will make more than half that sum. These

Messrs. Glendinning, Hatton Mains; Allan, remarks have been suggested by an experiment of Clifton; Walker, Kilpunt; Black, Newyearfield, Mr Rowat’s, where 6 cwts. of dissolved bones per also took part in the discussion, detailing the exacre gave as large a crop as 10 cwts. of the same perience of the application of different kinds of substance. It will be said that the 10 cwts. will

Two experiments mentioned by Mr. tell upon the succeeding crop. True; but why apply those in which it was found that 8 cwt. of dissolved

Rowat gave rise to considerable discussion, viz, the extra 4 cwts, to the turnip crop. The money bones produced as large a crop as 12 cwt. of the paid for it would have been inuch better lying at interest in the bank, or applied in some other way

same substance, and where 4 cwt, of guano, mixed for a year till the next crop was sown.

But we

with 4 cwt. of charcoal, at a cost of £3 16s. promaintain besides that there is considerable loss in duced as large a crop as 8 cwt. of guano alone, at the manurial value of the superphosphate by apply

a cost of £5 12s. The opinion of the meeting aping it to the soil a year before it is required. peared to be that every farmer should ascertain for Another important fact stated by Mr. Rowat is that himself, by experiment, the proper and most charcoal manure, which possesses by itself a com

profitable quantity of manure to apply per acre on paratively inferior manurial value, is found to pro

his farm according to the condition of each field, duce as great an effect when mixed with Peruvian

so as to raise the fullest crop; and that having asguano as an equal weight of guano.

We can certained that quantity, it would be injudicious to account for this in no other way than by attributing apply more, as a larger crop of turnips would not the effect to the property which the charcoal has of

be raised, while there was a risk of injuring the fixing the ammonia of the guano. But though we

succeeding grain crop. have tried before now other substances which had

The Chairman concluded by moving a vote of the same property, we have never obtained such thanks to Mr Rowat for his excellent paper. favourable results. The success attending Mr. Rowat's experiments certainly warrants a trial of the same substance used by him. The following HOLLY (Ilex aquæfolia)-Common holly—is one of are two experiments performed by me, the one in the very best shrubs or trees we possess, displaying 1856, and the other in 1857. In the first experi- either character, according to situation, age, and appli. ment, the whole field was manured with good farm

cation of art; it is found (according to Loudon) in most yard dung at the rate of 20 tons per imperial acre,

parts of Europe, in North America, Japan, and in and all the substances were applied at the rate of natural woods and forests : but for the purposes of this

Cochin China. In Britain it is found congregated in 26s. 6d. per imperial acre. As there was consider article (viz., in hedges) the holly stands pre-ewident. It able variety in the condition of the soil in the field, will not be necessary here to describe the somewhat I thought it better to make a series of experiments tedious practice of raising the plants by seed; we will over the field instead of one equal portion of land suppose that a hedge is intended. It is always necessary being taken in each experiment, and the produce of to well-trench the soil, and prepare a space sufficiently adjoining ridges weighed

wide to receive the plants. That their roots ramify by

adding to the original a portion of well-decomposed First Experiment.

manure, or rich compost would be as well. Then say Tons. cwts

in September or October, or in April or May, select Dissolved bones and Peruvian guano gave 6

from some respectable nurseryman plants that bave been 2

repeatedly removed (this point is of great importance to Steamed bones


6 3 insure success), of such size as suits the taste or means of the purchaser ; but we will start with a plant one which would spoil the general effect of an even outline. foot bigh, which should, when well established, receive It would, under every circumstance, be advisable to use proper pruning by cutting in, to the required breadth, a knife, and not the shears, as they rather mutilate the such irregular or luxuriant shoots that project beyond plants ; in fact, it is a barbarous practice at all times, to the limit allotted to them : this concentrates all the energies apply the shears to good evergreen hedges. Beyond an of the plant to the purposes intended--the forming a occasional top-dresssing or a little mulching, the work good hedge. After two or three years, it may be found is done, and the extra pains taken in the early growth of necessary, perhaps, to stop a few of the most naked and hollies will amply repay the planter for bis trouble, strongest leaders, should they start beyond an ordinary and he may in after-years look with pride on his growth; otherwise there might be hollow places found, handy work.

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

THE GROWTH AND MANAGEMENT OF WOO L. At a late monthly meeting of the Haddington wool is thoroughly dry the better-buyers don't Agricultural Club, Mr. Gaukroger, wool merchant, like to see greasy, “yolky” wool, and wont give a of Haddington, said he had been called upon so top price for it. Provided the weather is favourable unexpectedly to preside at that meeting, and had for drying, 4 to 6 or 8 days is long enough, and latterly been so much engaged in buying and not 14 or 20, as some people might think. packing wool, that he had no time to prepare a few Another important feature, although a very simple remarks anent the growth and management of that one, is the winding up, or what is termed in Yorkstaple commodity. It might be assumed, however, shire the “lapping." This is too often neglected; that any one practically acquainted with that branch the servant, in many instances, is careless, and of commerce could not be at a loss for a few words does not clean the fleece of all dung, dirt, tar, straw, on the subject. The first step incumbent upon &c. I believe this is never done with the knowthose aspiring to become growers of first-class ledge of the master, but they cannot be too particular wool, is to be particular in obtaining a clean, in cautioning their servants in this respect. healthy, and pure stock. Take for instance the sort There is a law passed for the protection of manuof wool most in demand at the present moment- facturers and wool-staplers, making this a serious half-bred hogs—in order to obtain the extreme offence, and punishable by a fine upon every fleece prices now going, there must be no infusion of so falsely wound, as well as the entire forfeiture blackfaced blood. Let it be as remote as you like, it of such fleeces, and the case to be disposed of in a will show itself in a greater or less degree, and, summary way before a magistrate. It is, perhaps, wherever prevalent, seriously deteriorates the value not out of 'place my alluding to this. I don't of this class of wool. They shall be crossed for think it has ever been acted upon in this country, years, and crossed again, till not the slightest I am sure no one would like to take abvantage of symptoms can be discovered in the head or legs of the the servants mistake, as the farmers would not be sheep; but to a judge the tinge of blood is at once cognizant of it, and are a courteous, gentlemanly, detected in the wool; it is heavily britched, and and hospitable class, which of itself even would hardly ever free from kemps--a vile, thick, dead debar any one from going to such “straits." white hair, that all staplers and manufacturers have some districts have deservedly a better character a great repugnance to. In a pure stock this than others for the growth of the wool. East objectionable hair is sometimes found, but generally Lothian cannot and never could compete with the in aged sheep; old owes, for instance, that are border-Roxburgh and Berwickshire. These disdraughted from breeding stocks, and sold to low tricts are famed in Yorkshire and France for what country farmers, who make them and that year's is termed Northumberland wool (which includes lambs fit for the butcher. To produce a sound the wool of Northumberland, Roxburgh, Berwick, stapled wool

, it is necessary that the sheep be East and Mid-Lothian), and always brings higher regularly fed; what I mean is, that they be not prices. This is to be attributed to the soil and allowed to go back in condition, for where this is climate of those districts being better adapted to permitted, it shows itself no less in the wool than the growth of wool, and being more what is termed the mutton; moreover, the wool can never after a wool-growing country, greater attention is paid wards recover its strength, and at that point where to it. In this county there is the greatest difference they have been pinched of meat, the wool will be possible-some places grow much better wool than tender, and break, and will not comb, but only fit others; go down to the low country and near to for weft or carding, and is consequently not so the sea, and then to the parishes of Salton, Gifford, valuable as sound combing wool. "The stronger and Bolton, and you will find a startling superiority you feed, the wool will be the longer and heavier, in favour of the latter ;--the former wants that but not the finer haired-medium feeding is best bright rich colour and full wholesome appearance for combining quality with a fair sound staple. of the latter, and has a dull,“ reeky", unkind aspect, The North British Agriculturist of May 20th, in and is wastier. I must state, however, that in speaking of salve or laid wool, strongly approves of spite of soil and climate, and the keeping of not clipping the sheep till the wool is again greasy flying stocks", there are some praiseworthy with its natural secretion. I believe this to be a exceptions in the northern division of the county. good plan for laid wools, but for white wools it is It does not follow that the richest and best corn not; the sooner the sheep are clipped after the land produces the best wool. I can understand a

[ocr errors]

farmer supposing that; but such is not the case. to notice that the managers of some of the largest The best Cheviot laid is grown in Sutherland, and charitable educational institutions of our country some beautiful half-bred wool in Caithness, whilst have at length seen the propriety of clothing their the best Cheviot white is grown on the Cheviot youngsters with the becoming garb of Scotch hills and district. Again, East-Lothian wool is, I tweed. Little does a careless farmer know of the believe, preferred to West-Lothian, Fife, and other trouble occasioned to a manufacturer from ill got places. In this age of competition, and when wool up wool; and if he would but for a moment reflect is so very high in price, it is the interest of those on the vast amount of capital involved in machinery, who wish good prices to give this matter their con- it should prompt him to be more careful; and when sideration. Wool is not "penny pies” now: prices we read of, and daily hear of, hill farms increasing will vary considerably for the same description, as in rent from 12 to 45 per cent., surely it is but it is the best wool that is wanted, and buyers prefer hopeful that every improvement should be attempted paying at all times a good rattling price for a to increase the value of the crop, whatever it superior article, to a shabby price for a slovenly got may be. This I humbly submit, can only Le done up one. A good lot, when bought, is half sold to by care in selecting the stock; and as we are the consumer, but a bad lot sticks long, and it is particularly on wool, the careful washing is of the up-hill work to quit it, and frequently spoils one highest importance to the manufacturer, inasmuch for a future transaction. I have been taken so

as it yields more weight of yarn, enables him to much ai unawares that nothing else occurs to me at put a greater quantity through the carding process, present, but shall be glad to hear any member's as it does not clog up the cards speedily. Its freeopinion on the subject.

ness not only makes it syin more sweetly, but Mr. Dowell (of Dowells & Lyon) wool broker, makes a better thread; bence it is more valuable to Edinburgh, having been introduced to the meeting the manufacturer in many respects, and he well by the chairman, said-From the exceedingly knowing the qualifications of well washed wool, is courteous invitation of Mr Harper to appear here, I ever desirous of acquiring it even at a considerable considered it would have been most unbecoming if advance. Bright-haired wool is much desired and I did not cheerfully respond to his wish by giving eagerly sought after by the manufacturer, being far a few remarks in extension of our circular, the more valuable to him than wool tinged with the more particularly as it touches the most important yellow hue; the production of a pure white wool product of our island; and in following this up, I free from all tendency to clamminess is what wool

, might justly be accused of arrogance, if I did not

growers cannot be too ambitious to attend to, and at the outset declare it was not from personal the attainment of this object depends very much on practical experience that these remarks were foun- prompt attention being paid to early clipping after ded on, but what is more valuable-from the the sheep has been thoroughly washed and dried. experiences of many who have enthusiastically de- Wet or unsettled weather may interfere with such voted their energies in the furtherance of our native an arrangement; but, generally speaking, the delay manufactures. In conversing with practical men, is attributable to the idea that farmers entertain, both producers and consumers, more particularly that they gain by weight when shearing is postthe latter, one feels thoroughly convinced there is poned. In this they are greatly mistaken, for they still a vast field open for improvement in the getting sacrifice the beautiful white appearance of the fleece, up of the wool; and let it not be considered I am a quality which cannot be too highly estimated, running away with the harrows too fast, when I and which the manufacturer invariably keeps in assert that in wool there is as much room for im- view in the advance of price. Considerable loss is provement as there was in days not long gone by, often experienced in the deterioration of wool, by when guano and artificial manures were unknown allowing a flock after washing to be turned into a in agriculture; nevertheless, it must excite a pleas- place where sand or moss rubs are prevalent ; ing sensation in the breast of every well-wisher of great care ought to be exercised in avoiding such, his country to observe the gradual, but marked and in procuring the best place till the clip is attention, which has of late years been bestowed on finished. Of late years complaints have been on rural affairs. To men of all ranks of society, the increase from the French buyers, who have agriculture seems now to be the favourite study, been large competitors, that kemp hair is far too not only of the landed proprietor and practical often found in Rocks; this should be particularly farmer, who are more immediately interested in its studied, and every experiment adopted to devise improvements, but also of the philosopher or man the means of eradication. Allow me now in a few of science, who, instead of wasting his time and words to draw attention to the advantage of dispostalents in useless metaphysical disquisitions, now ing of the wool by auction, and let it not be con. devotes them to agricultural researches, which, re- sidered I am too one-sided in this opinion, but bedound to the benefit, not of a few individuals only, lieve me it is from an honest conscientious convic, but to the community at large. When we consider tion that I am advising for the best: established the wool of this country alone warms almost every usage, old connections, and an indifference to class of society, gives employment to thousands in change, makes the task to prove the fact all the its manufacture, and engages whole fleets in its more difficult; but can the enlightened farmer of exportation, it should excite within every one of us the 19th century not see that when wool is collected a lively interest in its progress; and in a national into a well-lighted store, placed in competition point of view, it must be gratifying to know that with others of a worse or beiter sort, and when the the tartan and the tweed are eagerly competed for in direct competition of some 40 or 50 bidders come every clime: and it affords us no ordinary pleasure into play, each sort receives its just reward according to the care it has been got up with? How , benefited by in purse. Sales are now springing up infinitely better then is this plan, compared to what in all quarters ; but unless one general central we hope some day to see entirely exploded, viz., of market be adopted, it is easy to predict the issue ; accepting from the old dealer his idea of the value, and another fallacy is the frequency of the sales. and the giving of the same price in localities, let To suit all, more particularly the buyers from disthem be ill or well washed. In saying this, let me tant parts, set periods, such as the London practice, not be misunderstood by a highly intelligent and should be adopted, and we will ever endeavour to gentlemanly class of dealers, who have long occu- advance with the times in lending our aid to impied the wool field-that I wish to take the butter prove every method that will tell to the benefit of off their bread, and perhaps their bread as well. I the grower. In conclusion, allow me to thank you wish even to show them that sales would decidedly for this opportunity of expressing my opinions, and be to their advantage, and why. Look at the as I was an aspirant to the enviable position of an enormous expense they are put to, in travelling the agriculturist under the able tuition of Mr. Steedman country; whereas at sales they would get what they of Boghall, I am proud of the opportunity of meetrequired, with a tithe of the trouble and no expense; ing so many intelligent cultivators of the soil. they would thereby be better remunerated by re- The following members also took part in the ceiving a commission for so buying. Have we less discussion-Mr. Douglas, Athelstaneford; Mr. R. intelligence than our American and Australian Scot Skirving, Campton; Mr. Durie, Standingstane, neighbours, who have long seen the advantage of &c. The discussion ultimately was adjourned till sales ? Certainly not! Still we are only waking next meeting, so that Mr. Harper's views on the up to appreciate wbat they have long enjoyed and subject might be obtained.


1. The Best MODE OF. LAYING DOWN LAND means of the subsoil plough, and also by manual TO PERMANENT Grass, &c.

labour ; and although in the latter case the expense

was considerable, still we found it remunerative. In laying down land to permanent pasture, the Generally speaking, however, the subsoil plough first point to be attended to is its thorough and will be found sufficient to answer the purpose. efficient drainage; for without this all-important Subsoiling must in no case whatever be put in the preliminary, no matter how the other operations room of or used as a substitute for draining, as it are conducted, disappointment will finally ensue. has been done by some persons. This would only We need not enter into any lengthened account of lead to disappointment, and very likely to underthe manner in which draining is performed, for valuing what is in reality a most important operathe details are generally well known; but this tion when properly performed, and in its proper much we must say—the drains ought not to be time and place. less than four feet deep, and, as a general rule, not The eradication of weeds is indispensably necesmore than 21 feet apart. We are aware that there sary, and it is impossible to be too careful and are many persons who do not nsi it necessary minute in conducting this preliminary operation. to drain pasture land, or what is intended to When the land is very foul it may be necessary to become such, as closely as they would do land resort to a bare fallow, particularly when the grass intended to be under regular cropping ; but we seeds are to be sown in autumn. At the same consider this to be mistaken policy. Unless the time, even very foul land may be cleaned during land is naturally dry, it must be rendered so the preparatory operations for a root crop, and in artificially; for if this is not done, coarse grasses the summer culture of the same. By this, we will displace those finer descriptions which may be mean turnips or mangel wurzel, drilled or (as it is sown, and coarse grasses are always innutritious. denominated in many parts of England) ridged, from

Taking it for granted that the land intended to twenty-seven to thirty inches apart ; any closer be laid down in permanent grasses has previously intervals will not permit the horse-hoe and grubber been under a lengthened course of rather severe to act efficiently. When a root crop is grown, cropping, combined with, perhaps, careless general the grass seeds cannot be sown until the following management, we would beg to detail the steps spring. In the case of potatoes, indeed, the crop which we have in many instances of this kind may be removed in time to permit sowing in adopted, for the purpose of preparing and finally autumn; but unless the land is already tolerably laying down the land to grass.

free froin weeds, potatoes do not answer well as a After draining, and when the surface soil is preparatory crop, so far as the eradication of the shallow and the subsoil retentive, it is of the weeds is concerned, because the potato must be utmost consequence to deepen it by subsoiling. planted at so early a period in spring as to prevent We have had experience of land being laid down a thorough cleaning of foul land. When the to grass both with and without subsoiling; and in autumn cleaning of stubbles can be carried properly, every instance where it was omitted, if the subsoil into effect, preparatory to growing a crop of was of a retentive character, we have invariably potatoes, then such a crop will be found very been led to attach a greater amount of importance favourable indeed to the growth of sown grasses. to this operation. We have deepened land by In whatever mode the eradication of weeds is performed, whether by bare fallowing, or in the ficient to make an excellent seed bed. The seeds cultivation of root, or, as they may be more cor. are then sown and the land harrowed, but not rectly designated, fallow crops, the operation must rolled, unless in the case of very dry, sandy, be done effectually, and not hurried or slurred or sharp land. We shall afterwards refer to the over. The couch-grass rake, which is used in kinds and quantities of seeds to be used. many parts of England, will be found a useful When turnips or mangel are the crops which auxiliary in the earlier stages of the business, but precede grass, the liming ought to be done immeit ought not to depend altogether on this, but must diately after the removal of the previous grain be followed by careful hand-picking. Joints of crop, before the land receives the winter furrow, so couch-grass, small dock roots, and various other that it may be thoroughly incorporated in the soil weeds, will escape the rake, and these can only be before the application of manure for the root crop. effectually removed by the hand. Hand picking, The farm-yard manure, not less than 20 tons no doubt, adds to the expense ; but it is neverthe- per acre, in combination with bones, will be applied, less absolutely necessary, if it is desirable to lay of course, immediately before sowing the turnip the land down in a proper manner.

seed. As turnips do not perfect their growth until It is of no use attempting to lay down land to it is too late to sow grass seeds, and very likely permanent grass if it is in poor condition, or what being either wholly or in part consumed by sheep is called out of heart. When potatoes are the if so, so much the better), the sowing of the grass preceding crop, and autumn cleaning can be seeds must be deferred till spring,

In this case, carried into effect, the manuring ought to take as soon as the turnips are removed or consumed, place before the land is rough-ploughed previous the land must be ploughed in very broad ridges or to winter. This manuring ought to consist of not lands, say fifty or sixty feet wide (still taking less than 25 to 30 tons of farm-yard dung, and it for granted that the land is dry), and even wider, if is not necessary that the manure be fully decom- | convenient. In this state it will lie until spring, posed. By the spring it will become incorporated when, if the crop has been entirely removed, and with the soil, and there is a greater probability of a not consumed either altogether or partly by sheep, sound crop of potatoes than would be the case if after the land has been thoroughly operated upon the application of the manure was deferred until by the grubber, 2 cwt. per acre of Peruvian guano the planting season. In the spring, and im- may be harrowed in,' the grass seeds sown, mediately previous to planting, when the manure harrowed, and rolled. was ploughed down in autumn, is the proper time If the land is bare fallowed, preparatory to being to apply lime. The quantity necessary depends on laid down to permanent grass, we would strongly the nature of the soil ; but in the case of loams of urge the necessity of being most particular in con. a medium character, that is, neither a heavy clay, ducting the various operations of ploughing, harnor a light, moory, or sandy soil, we have been in rowing, and weed picking, because we have not the habit of using from 120 to 150 bushels of lime unfrequently seen bare fallows which could only be per statute acre as it comes from the kiln. If it is called fallows by courtesy. The land certainly was not convenient to apply it in spring, the operation not in crop; neither was it, properly speaking, in may be deferred until the removal of the crop. In grass; but it was bearing a luxuriant crop of couch this case we would sow eight to ten bushels per and other weeds; and instead of attempting to statute acre of half-inch bones broadcast, previous remove these, their growth was merely retarded for to planting the potatoes. In all cases which have the time by an occasional ploughing. We bave, come under our observation, we have seen that indeed, known in more than one case a crop of bones are almost an indispensable necessary when couch-grass hay to be taken off these so-called laying down land to permanent grass. We may be fallows. “ THOROUGH” must be the motto, permitted to mention one case in particular as an whether it relates to draining, manuring, working illustration. In laying down a field of rather stiff of the land, or eradicating every vestige of the clay loam, which had been previously heavily limed, weeds by which it is infested, to a part of the field bone-dust was applied, whilst The kinds and quantities of grass seeds to be the remaining portion was laid down after farm- sown are regulated by the nature of the soil. On yard manure. The boned portion was in the soils of medium quality, the following mixture will middle of the field. Ten years afterwards the be found advantageous :boned land could be plainly distinguished from the Perennial rye-grass, 10 lbs.; Italian rye-grass, rest of the field, even at a considerable distance ; 4 lbs.; Timothy, 14 lbs. ; Cocksfoot, 5 lbs.; Meathe turf was closer and greener, and always closely dow Foxtail, 23 lbs.; Rough-stalked meadow grass, eaten by whatever stock was grazed in the field, 2 lbs.; Hard fescue grass, 24 lbs. ; Meadow fescue but especially by sheep.

grass, 33 lbs. ; Perennial red clover, 6 lbs. ; White After the potatoes are removed, say early in or Dutch clover, 4 lbs.; Alsike clover, 2 lbs., per September, the land must be harrowed, and all statute acre. weeds carefully removed. After this apply the In dry lands intended chiefly for sheep pasture lime, or bones, if not done in spring, and then set omit the timothy and the rough-stalked ineadow the two-horse grubber to work, stirring up the soil grass, and substitute 3 lbs. of sheep's fescue and 2 thoroughly, both across the field and lengthways. Ihs. of common parsley, both of which are greedily Taking for granted that the land is either naturally eaten by sheep. In heavy or damp soils double the or arti ally it will be best to lay it down to quantity of timothy as given in the above mixture ; grass in a level state, that is, without furrows; and and whilst allowing only one-half of the hard the action of the grubber ought to be quite suf- escue grass, add the quantity deducted from this,

« PoprzedniaDalej »