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threshing machine; and go with various other labor saving machines. These we adopt, but if we are informed verbally, or by publications, that we must plough and mannre our lands different from wbat we have been accustomed to do, and as we were taught by our fathers, we discard the recommendation as an innovation unworthy of our notice.
“Agriculture is the art of cultivating the earth in such a manner as to cause it to produce in the greatest plenty and perfection, those vegetables which are useful to man and to the animals he has subjected to his dominion. This art is the basis of all other arts, and in all countries coeval with the first dawn of civilization. Without agriculture, mankind would be savages thinly scatterred throngh interminable forests, with no other habitations than caverns, hollow trees or buts more rude and inconvenient than the most ordinary hovel or cattle shed of the modern cultivator. It is the most universal, as well as the most ancient of the arts, and requires the greatest number of operators. It employs seven-eigbts of the population of almost every civilized community. Ariculture is not only indispensable to national prosperity, but is eminently conducive to the welfare of those who are engaged in it. It gives health to the body, energy to the mind, is favorable to virtuous and temperance habits, and to knowledge, and to parity of moral character; which are the pillars of good government, and the true support of national independence.”
The occupation is honorable, and the most distinguished men in this country bave so esteemed it. Gen. Washington was a practical farmer, and during the war of the revolution, he was in the babit of directing his overseer whom he left in charge, wbat fields to cultivate, and how, with different crops. After peace was established, he returned to Mount Vernon and resumed his favorite occupation; and from thence until bis death, he was in correspondence with the most distinguished agriculturalists in Europe; imparting and receiving information in the common affairs of husbandry, and rearing different kinds of animals for his plantation, or for sale,
"The ancient Romans venerated the plow, and in the earliest and purest times of the republic, the greatest praise which could belgiven to an illustrious character was, to say that he was an industrious and judicious husbandman.' The young men of this country will do well more generally to engage in cultivating the soil; and the females will find in their neat, well arranged houses, in their well cultivated gardens, producing choice vegetables and grapes, in their door yards adorned with evergreens,
sbrabbery and flowers, in their lawns, in the pare air, and in the pursuits of raral life better health, more contentment and happiness than the fashions and dissipations of towns and cities can impart to an immortal and accountable being.
It is a rational, useful, virtuous life, and no female should onderrate or despise it. As a general rule, we cultivate too much land for our means, so that we do not obtain as much grain as we might by bestowing our labor and fertilizers upon & less quantity of land. This is particularly the case with the land we plow and sow, or plant. We not only lose in the money unnecessarily expended for land, but a large per centum on our labor and seed. We are informed that in ancient times "a vine dresser had two daughters and a vineyard. When his oldest daughter was married, he gave her a third of his vineyard for a portion, notwithstanding which he had the same quantity of fruit as formerly. When his youngest daughter was married, he gave her balf of wbat remained. Still the produce of his vineyard was undiminished. This result was the consequence of his bestowing as much labor on the third part left after his daughters had received their portions, as he had been accustomed to give to the whole vineyard.”
We all find this apologne verified in the small quantity of land each cultivates in bis garden. The vegetables from a garden of quarter of an acre furnish delicious food, and mainly supply our tables with esculents more than half of the year, and with cabbages, onions, beets, carrots and parsnips for a longer period; and we realize more from it to sustain life, than froin two or three acres of field culture; and yet our gardens generally are not as well taken care of as they should be. If a field was manured and tilled equally well, it would be equally productive. We are not, generally, sufficiently skillful, prudent and careful in enlarging and preserving the manure heap. “Of all fertilizers, the most universal and most valuable to the cul. tivator, and yet the most generally mismanaged, is the farm yard manure which has often been described as the farmer's sheet-anchor."
M. P. Cato, the earliest agricultural writer-one hundred and fifty years before the birth of our Savior-gave instructions to have a large dungbill,“to keep your compost carefully; when you carry it out, scatter it and pulverize it, and carry it out in the autumn."
Our remissness in looking to the dongheap, and making beaps of composts, is probably owing to the fact that our country is comparatively new, add so long as we cultivated the virgin soil,
manure was not deemed to be necessary, and our log barns were temporary buildings and afforded limited, if any conveniences for systematic action in the matter. We are now without excuse io longer neglecting to put our land in a high state of fertility and cultivation. We make no use of guano, the common fertilizer of the middle States, and very limited use of plaster, although it is in abundance at Sandusky, and easily obtained in western New York, at reasonable prices. These articles require outlays of money, and my doctrine is, that we should manage and economise so as to make others our debtors instead of cred. itors; and as a general rule, we should use the materials at our command. All the straw and hay not consumed by the stock, and all weeds, broken bones and rubbish shonld be gathered and placed in the barn yard, commencing in an excavation that will retain the liquid, and upon that heap should be placed whatever has been thrown out of the stables during the winter or that has been gathering during the summer, and the clearings of pigstyes and hen-roosts. The different kinds of manure should be mixed as evenly as possible, and occasionally peat or earth should cover the heap. The heap should not be permitted to heat (to which horse dung is inclined) so as to be charred or burned in the center to a dry white substance, termed "fire fanged.” In that state it loses from 50 to 75 per cent. of its value. Who has not lamented in traveling through the country, when seeing a heap of straw, the produce of a field, subject to be blown away by the winds, or if permitted to rot, to be of little value, the fertilizing gases having escaped. Manure should not be permitted to lie on the surface of the ground except it be carried out late in the fall or winter, and then not, if in situations that the drainage from it will flow off into streams. "Columella, the most learned practical writer on agriculture among the ancients, born at Cadiz, in Spain, lived about the middle of the first century, advised the cultivator not to carry out to the field more dung than the laborers can cover the same day.” If I had not, within the last eight weeks, seen field after field, froin five to fifteen acres, dotted over with small dungheaps, exposed for days and weeks to the rays of a bot sun, frequently known to be near by the exhalations, before discovered by the eye, I should not have thought the advice of Columella at all necessary. Any person who should expose beer, cider, wine or other fermenting liquors in open vessels to the action of the air, would be judged by every other member of the community as wholly destitute of reason, aud yet it is almost as common as it is to see a piece of ground to be cultivated in
wheat or rye, with the manure designed to fertilize it laying for days and weeks in heaps of a bushel each. Whoever has not from peat pits and barn yard sufficient to fertilize his land, may do it by plowing under oats or clover.
We have no lands here that are deemed to be exhausted, but they certainly do not produce as much of grain as they did for several years after they were put under the plow. The properties exhausted, being constituent parts of the grain, must be restored, and two powerful if cot necessary agents for accomplishing it, are lime and plaster or gypsum. The Hon. John N. Clayton, lately of the State of Deleware, purchased, several years ago, an impoverished farm of about four hundred acres, five miles from New Castle, commanding a view of the Dela.. ware river. He purchased lime from Schuylkill county, in Pennsylvania, at twenty-five cents per bushel in the stone, delivered at New Castle. The hauling from New Castle was in wagons. After limeing he stocked down with clover, on which he sowed plaster, and at a proper time, having respect to its growth, the clover was plowed and turned under, and winter grain sowed. The farm yard was closely attended to, and its contents returned to the earth, and by following the course briefly indicated, in a few years be had a farm not excelled for fertility in Delaware, if in the United States. My belief is, it is the most productive farm I ever saw. It is now owned and cultivated by James C. Douglass, his nephew, who is a model farmer.
Geo. W. Cummings, at Smyrna, Delaware, purchased an exhausted farm of two hundred acres. It had been rented for two-fifths of the corn the tenant raised, and the quantity the landlord received, was thirty bushels, on a field of thirty-one acres. By the use of lime and plaster, and plowing under green vats and clover, the average of his wheat in a comparatively short time was twenty-five bushels to the acre, and of his Indian corn, from forty to fifty bushels to the acre, without the use of barn-yard manare. Lime decomposes the vegetable and animal substances in the land, thereby enriching it by gases. It destroys grub and other worms, and converts their remains into manure. It so operates upon hard clay land that it pulverizes easily when stirred by the plow, harrow or hoe. If we consult our own interests, we shall lime extensively. It is to be observed that if the land is exbausted, a smaller quantity of lime should be used, than when possessing mach vegetable matter.
“The chemical uses of lime to vegetation may be conveniently divided into two heads, first its direct action upon vegetation;
and secondly, its chemical operation on the matters contained in all cultivatable soils."
It is found by chemists, that all vegetables partake of lime, but varying in degree. After a series of years, that necessary ingredient is exhausted by cultivation, and must be restored.If the land contains lime pebbles, as in the upper part of Indiana and the lower part of Michigan, in the burr oak county, deeper plowing brings the pebbles and fine particles of lime towards the surface, and supplies the deficiency. This is evident in the change of the color of the earth, which when first exposed is a light yellow; but after being brought to the surface and exposed to the influence of the son and air, it is as dark as chocolate or burnt coffee. Our heavy clay lands possess some lime, as is seen in the incrustation of tea kettles; and although not in sufficient qantity, a kind Providence has supplied the country bordering on the waters flowing into the Mississippi, with lime stone in ridges and in the beds of some of the streams. I think there are no lime stone ridges on any water running from the south into Lake Erie, east of the Huron. The lime stone is found within a short distance west of that river in abundance.
The land north of the 41st degree of north latitude in this State, is not generally as productive in wheat, as that south of that line. There are some exceptions, but generally north of that latitude is better adapted to grass than grain. We ought however, to raise grain enough in every township, for the home consumption of man and beast.
The quantity of grain must necessarily vary according to the season, under the same kind of culture, as drought and wet, heat and cold, vary. The valuable Ohio statistics show that the quantity of corn in Ohio, in 1849, was greater by 1,276,180 busbols, than in 1856, seven years afterwards, and that the decrease from 1855 to 1856, from unusual occurrences, was 29,784,919 bushels of wheat and corn. The quantity of wheat in 1850, was greater than in 1856, by 16,069,163 bushels. The quantity in this part of the State will be less than in 1856, from the combination of three causes: first, the kind of wheat sown; second, the wet weather that caused the rust; and third, midge, or red weevil. Several years ago, the Mediterranean wheat,
so called, was introduced into this country. Its name was probably derived from its having been brought from some part bordering upon the Mediterranean sea. It was earlier in ripening than the wheat we bad before cultivated, and escaped the rust; its stem, or straw was nearly solid to the second joint above the root, and the Hessian fly could not penetrate it. The stem or