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The progressive farmer and southern farm gazette. (Starkville, Miss.) 1910-1920, April 02, 1910, Image 2

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Professor Massey’s
Editorial Page.
Farm and Garden Work For April.
F YOUR land is high and mellow and well
drained, why not try good preparation and
drilling the cottonseed on level land. Then
start the cultivation, before the seed germinate
and get above ground, by running the smoothing
harrow and breaking all the crust. When the
cotton is up on a bed you run through after it
germinates and leave all the crust right around
the plants for the wind to chafe the stems against.
But when the harrow is used the crust is all taken
away. Then use the weeder both ways as soon
as the plants show’, and you will rapidly destroy
the grass that is just starting. There is nothing
like rapid work at this time to prevent getting in
the grass in rainy weather. It takes hard work
to kill grass after it gets a few inches high, while
it takes little time with the wide weeder to kill it
as soon as the seed germinate.
iutiu Keep using tuts wceuei, <*uu u )uui iuws
are run out exactly, you can take out two teeth
over two rows and keep the weeder going till the
cotton is near blooming. Then if you have a
Keystone weeder you can shut it up like a culti
vator and keep on scratching, and as you do not
turn up fresh earth with more weed seed, you
will have clean rows.
But while this can be done with the weeder I
would prefer to use a two-horse riding cultivator
after the ci has been brought to a stand, and
thus cultivate both sides of the rows at once, set
ting the cultivator to run shallow’. For we must
remember that the roots in the soil are feeding
the tops, and cotton roots run far and wide across
the rows and the surface roots are within three or
four inches of the top of the ground, and any deep
cultivation, or any use of a turning plow, will
not only tear the roots, but will turn up soil to
dry out and weed seed to grow.
llL'Y COW PEAS NOW.—If you have not saved
your own seed, do not wait till sowing time when
the price has gone up, but buy early. Do not im
agine that you can not afford to sow peas because
the price is high. You can not afford to neglect
them. Cowpeas and crimson clover are the team
that will bring prosperity to the Southern farms
if properly used and fed. If you can not feed
beeves, you can at least feed hogs, and there is no
better place for the hogs than a pea field, and no
better way in which to make the peas of value to
your soil. At present prices, the feeding of hogs
promises to be the most nrnfitshle fnrti ictrv t Vi a
CORN PLANTING TIME.—If you have, as you
should have, a crop of crimson clover to turn for
corn, do not be in a hurry about it. The largest
crop of corn I saw last summer after clover was
planted after the clover was dead and had done all
that it could do. We have plenty of time to make
corn in the South without hurrying in the spring,
and it is far better to let the clover mature and
► then turn and harrow it and plant on the fresh
and warm soil where the corn will grow off rap
But in turning the clover do not try to turn it
over flat, but edge it up nicely. Turned under
*lat it may interfere with the rise of capillary
moisture and the crop may suffer from drouth.
But edge up the furrows, even if a little clover is
left on top. It will do no harm at all.
iou may have bought seed corn. Do not plant
it till you have tested its germination by taking a
lew grains from each ear you intend to use, put
ting them in squares marked on a piece of cotton
cloth laid on a box of wet sawdust and covered
with a gunny sack and placed in a warm place.
' °u can soon see the percentage that will ger
minate. It pays to test the seed and avoid blanks
In the rows.
Take off the tip and butt grains of the ears, not
because they will not grow, but because in plant
ing with a corn planter you want grains of uui
*ofm size to make the machine drop right.
IN THE GARDEN.—April is a busy month here.
The tender seeds can now go into the soil. Snap
beans are to be started, onion seed sown for sets,
swreet corn planted, and the early potatoes work
ed. Try to plant in a space together such crops
as will soon come off, such as snap beans, radishes
and early beets, so that you will have quite a
space for the succession crops. The succession
crop of cabbages to follow the Early Wakefield
should now be ready to set. Cauliflower plants
set in early March should be encouraged to
grow as rapidly as possible so as to get them
headed before the weather gets too hot.
Do not follow the Northern plan of sowing
parsnip and salsify seed now. Wait till July for
As soon as you have the first planting of snaps
above ground, plant more and keep that up till
September and you will have an abundant supply
all summer. Then as each planting of snaps is
off plant more corn for a succession of roasting
ears, and keep that up till August. In short,
keep the garden at work all the time.
Set good strong tomato plants in rows three
feet apart and two feet in the row, and put a
strong stake to each plant and train it to a single
stem, pinching out the side shoots as they show.
You can get better crops in that way than by let
ting them tumble.
Sow late in the month seed of tomatoes in the
open ground to take the place of the early ones
that may become exhausted in midsummer. Keep
the onions sown early perfectly clean and thinned
to three inches. Pull the earth from them as the
V, ,, 1 kn # „ _ • I > • *
ou uuiu win cut uu mu Krounu,
and only the roots under, and you will get far
better crops.
Green onions tied in bunches will sell well al
most anywhere In town, and can be made very
profitable. Work the garden for all it is worth,
and manure It heavily, and you will find that It
will be a profitable spot, and what your family
does not consume, you can take to town whenev. r
you go, or to the factory village. In the South
there need not be a day in all the year when the
garden will not give you something.
Celery seed should be sown the last of the
month. Sow in rows on the surface and pat them
down with back of spade. Then lay a gunny sack
on the bed and water lightly, and the sack will
keep the surface moist till the seed germinate.
Matters of Interest Just Now.
Llv jjrj CM US IS THE thing we must continue to
I j- j|J insist lipou. Dr. Butler shows how we
1——' have the advantage of the West in every
thing else. The Southern soils on the uplands
did not have as much humus as the Northern up
lands in the start, for in the open woods of our
hills the leaves are blown to the lowlands and
hollows, while in the North the heavy snows pack
them down to decay where they fall.
We have better corn weather, no risk that frost
will catch the crop In an Immature state, more
rainfall, if we only plowed deep enough and prac
ticed shallow and constant level cultivation to re
tain the moisture; and all we lack is the mellow
ing, moisture-retaining influence of the vegetable
decay with its swarm of living organisms that are
f'flH f I fill ft 1 1 U hrincritirr i I it t Mi. t *
i -„ -o’-o u i (tiiauimr OULU
a soil.
Dr. Butler Bays: “We can beat the West when
ever tfe set out to do It.” Every great corn con
test for yield per acre has been won in the South
with the Southern prolific corns, and I do not be
*;eve that there will ever be a corn developed for
the North that has this prolific character, for as
sociated with the waking of wore ears per plant
comes in the need for a long season to mature
corn of this character.
We have shown that we can beat the Corn Belt
in product per acre when we try, uud now wo waut
to try to bring up all our acres to such production
It can be done, and done In an economical and
profitable way, by good farming and an everlasting
abandonment of the old planting Idea and gamb
ling on the chances with u little low grade fer
tilizer. I asked a trucker here to-day what char
acter of commercial fertilizer he ukc*b. He said
that nothing less than 7—6—5 would give him
the results he wants, that he had lost thousands
of dollars by using a low-grade fertilizer, and
wanted plenty of nitrogen to push his early crops
'i bis, of course, is for growing early truck cropH,
and our truckers have learned that they must have
a high-grade fertilizer for these. On the other
hand, 1 thought of the thousands of farmers who
are using 200 pounds of 2—8—2 with the hope
of squeezing a little more cotton out of the land
from which all the humus has been burnt out
They do not need a fertilizer so high in nitrogen
' as the truckers do. but they do need to use more
heavily the phosphoric acid and potash to get
large crops of pea vines on the land for hay and
crimson clover to turn for the cotton and corn
| and for putting humus-making material in the
tells you how to find out, and you can find out
more about your soil by plot experiments than
any chemist can tell you by making an analysis
of the soil. And you can find out, too. that the
chief thing needed in our old soils is phosphoric
acid. You can get the nitrogen from the air by
the growing of peas and clover, but to grow the <•
successfully you must have an abundant Hupply
of phosphoric acid, and iu the lighter soils plenty
of potash, loo. Supply these In a liberal manner
and the peas and clover will do the rest if y. i
feed the forage and return the manure to the
land. It is humus-making material you need f ir
more than commercial ferlilirers containing ni
hard job to get out of the grass when you are
once in. It is an easy Job to go rapidly over a
field with smoothing harrow before the crop com*-*
up and then with the wcoder keep down every »it
»* a I . ~ ... . _ _ 1. ... I .a___
v* v t u w v. » % v »* «» v« «• ii<v i v uvev* f. « .1. .v
that Is just k* rrnlnallng from the seed, and If you
keep up the shallow cultivation through tho *«<a
fon, you kill a.i tho grai<s seed that are w ithin tho
limit where they can germinate. Hut the man
who waits for the grass to get the start has to
turn a lot of earth to cover It, and he brings up
more seed near the surface to sprout, and has
tho slow work to do over again, all because ho did
not have an implement that he could run rapidly
over several rows before the gra,\s got a start.

second application of fertiliser gave Mr. Wanna
mnker more crop simply shows that the crop had
not as much as it could use In tho first application,
and If the first application had been more liberal,
or equal to both, I havo no doubt that as good,
or better, results would have boon had from a sin
gle fertilization. The only case In which I would
use another application after the first would be
where In a wet season the nllratvss bad been wash
ed away early, and In that case an application of
nitrate of soda to tho growing crop would bo of
benefit. When a man doe* not put on enough at
the start he may find Ui« additional application of
benefit, but where there was plenty used at fir«t,
there will he little results from another applica
Caustic Lime or Ground Limestone.
CORRESPONDENT, who la one of the
many Interested In lime and Its effects on
the soils, writes as follows:
“Please tell me which la better to use on
laud, caustic lime or grouud limestone? Will
caustic lime destroy the humus In the soil?
How long will it take for tho limn to take
effect? When should It be applied to the
i iii iid r
To him 1 made this reply: it depends largely
ou the condition of tho land as to whether 1 would
use the freshly slaked burnt lluie or the ground
limestone. If the soil Is well supplied with hu
mus and needs llmo from being in un acid Condi
tion, i would prefer to use the burnt lime slaked
with water to a powder. The ground rock applied
heavily will gradually sweeten tho soil and bring
about conditions similar to those In lime soils.
Hut wo use either, not as manure, but mm a re
agent for bringing about mechanical chauge* In
the soil, and sweetening It and releasing plant
food. Lime hastens the nitrification of humus
and thus brings It Into use ns nitrate, and If the
humus-making material Is not kept up It will,
doubtless, aid in destroying It. Twenty to twenty
five bushels per acre Is enough ln any case It
Is beet applied to the land after turning a sod,
and should then be well harrowed In, as It sinks ln
tho land and should ho ueir the top so as to pasw
through tho whole sol!, on which It begins to act
at once.
""" '" ' " ■" *
The Progressive Farmer and Gazette Is the only
Southern furm paper that runs no patent stock
food advertising.

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