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The Florida Agriculturist.
A JOURNAL DEYOTED jo STATE INTERESTS. : Toll Contents of this Number. Page 357—Let us compare Notes; Mr. Col man on Spanish Clover; Lake Worth. Page 258—The Dark Side, poetry; The Farm Hand; The Perjured Witness. Page 359—Legal Notices; Advertisements. Page 260—The Early Vegetable Industry; State Fair; A Fiue Orange; Pine-apple Plants; Books Received; Floridiana, Page 261—Avertisements. Page 263-Florida; Turkey Feathers; A Novel Railway; State Fair; Receipt for Curing Meat. Page 263—Advertisements. I age 264 Telegraphic ; Advertisements. Let us k Couiparej Notes. A few weeks ago I read au article in the Florida Agriculturist by Dr. Bracey in which he speaks rather roughly ol hammock land for orange growing. I have waited some time hoping some abler pen than mine might take up the gauntlet thrown by Dr. Bracey, but seeing nothing of the kind and being one of the silly ones who still believe in hammock I have concluded to answer it myself N ow the word hammock as applied to lands in Florida, is about as indef inite as heat or cold without giving degiees oi temperature, everything being termed hammock that is not high pine scrub or Hat woods, and varying in fertility from scrub to the richest sugar cane lard.. I <io nqt ■kww what the hiUmuoalci the St. Johns are, having never seen them but we have here an abun dance of what we call first class ham. mock. These lands were under cul tivation thirty-five or forty years ago and are now covered with a dense growth of live oak, water oak, hick ory, ash. magnolia, and cabbage palm etto. The soil is a grey sand full of vegetable humus one to three feet deep, then six inches to a foot of yel low clay, then rotten limestone with marl and sand beneath, just the soil to receive and retain all that nature has placed upon it. These lands cleared of their hard wood timber which is from one to three feet in di ameter, leaving the cabbage trees properly thinned to afford protection from frost, and moderate shade, to be removed afterward if required, the timber felled, and burned, the ashes carefully spread, which are the best possible fertilizer for the orange tree; add to this the rich soil full of humus, and an unlimited supply of decaying roots and stumps, and what can pine land offer to compensate for it, where even the leaves afford little fertility and the ash is almost worth less, not even worth hauling from our saw mills for any purpose. The Doctor speaks of the great pro* ductiveness of the pine lands, and, as if the hammocks produced noth ing. That may be true of his sec tion but it is quite the reverse here. The pine lands will produce a little corn, watermelons, cow peas and sweet potatoes, the latter one year a fair crop without fertilising, while -our hammocks will produce anything we choose to plant upon them and' grow better for several years after clearing. I have garden vegetables of various kinds nearly all the year round; at present we have turnips, radishes, lettuce and tomatoes, bpets, and onions that require the richest soil, grow beautifuly. I never have been able to raise finer in ar.y place than here.; I had onions that weighed a pound apiece and we kept them sound and good for lamily use until October, when fresh ones w’ere sent here from the North. These lands produce sweet potatoes abundantly when not too rich. The Doctor says he hears of their being raised on pine lands up into the teens. I lately dug 16ilbs. from one vine and saw one potato at Port Orange that weighed 15lbs. and one lately dug in this vil lage that weighed lßlbs. These are weights, not hearsays and all grow on hammock land. Again says the Doc tor, true, the insect may be worse and the fruit poorer but gives no reason for the former while the latter assertion quite surprises us here as all of our oranges are bright skinned and of excellent quality. My friend J. D. Mitchell has a grove on the la goon, on rich, heavy, hammock land the fruit of which when ripe would tickle the palate of an epicure; large, thin skinned, tender pulp, lull of rich aromatic, luscious juice. I have eat en oranges from the West Indies, Bio Janeiro, the Sandwich Islands, California, and the Medeterranean, but never have eaten anything equal in quality to the fruit produced in this grove and have never eaten a poor orange when well ripened, grown on a healthy hammock tree but have eaten very poor oranges ' boih here and in Jacksonville grown colored, tough pulp and with juice that I have heard described a9 vine gar and water. Nevertheless I have no doubt that many fine oranges do grow on pine land; it is this supe riority Iso seriously question, and now may not something else than hammock land have been the cause of the Doctor’s failure. I have al ways had a misgiving as to a man with a prefix to his name raising a successful orange grove. Have not professional duties interfered with the care of his grove, for the orange tree is one of the finest of trees, one of the noblest gifts of God to man and will not brook neglect, but re quires thorough cultivation and nour ishment and the constant care of an intelligent hand. A year ago last February I set out five acres of such land as I have described with orange trees, procuring the best seedlings I could get, and since reading the arti cle by Dr. Bracey have been measur ing them and will give results, in or der as I said that we maycompare notes, as I am very desirous to know where the orange tree does grow best. Most of the trees were from f to 1 inch in diameter, but I secured 20 trees from 1-J to 2 inches in diam eter. These trees I cut back to 4or 5 feet high, removing all the leaves. I find by measurement now after but two years growth that they are from 3to 5 inches in diameter with full spreading tops from ten to fifteen feet high and one lomon tree set at the same time 2 inches in diameter, now 4 inches in diameter with 8 feet spread of top and 16 feet high. This tree has fruit upon it now, and sever al of the orange trees bid fair to bear the coming season. This dona not look like waiting ten or twelve yeam. AU the other trees have done . <**4/ *• / i.uICfV % , j equally welL \ have hundreds of DeLand, Florida, Wednesday December 25,1878. sweet seedlings in nursjg not yet two years old one inch u diameter, and two lemon trees of tb same age one I£, the other 2 inches* i diameter, and ten feet high. I woui like very much to learn what otheigroves of like age, have done the past two years, whether on pine oihammock, but please give us measutments notj, estimates. And nowwhel regret any discussion that tends ft the dis paragement of any land Four State or County fit for cultivapn, as we have little of it at beslfand while we are willing to admit i'i that can be honestly claimed for t3ie| other side of the county, yet wiclaim, just modestly claim a little,’Coeideration for our side of the Couny with its beautiful river, its deli&tful sea breezes and its rich hamnocks, once highly cultivated, and if any credit can be given to what is sdd by the oldest inhabit ant, thirty v*sels have? been seen in its waters atitime wait ing to be loaded with jts rich pro ducts of sugar, syrup andindigo. M. L. Smith. Daytona, Florida. Mr. Coleman on Spanish Clover. Editor Florida Agriculturit: The tradition of Spanish'.clover is as follows; When the Spanish evacuated Pen sacola the soldiers found this plant and their horses fed upon it rapidly. It seems to have existetljn that vif cfcmy ‘iucalt.v*, f* any parfnfhlar care of it. Hearing of the plant I procured some of the seed, five years ago, and have been cultivating it in my orange grove as a forage plant and expressly as a vegetable fertilizer. I find it ample and sufficient. It grows on this pine land lrom four to six feet, branches and spreads in every di rection forming a thick matting and shade to the earth, affording all the mulching the trees require. One hand can cut and make in a day all a horse can eat in a year. Two day’s sun will cure it ready for hauling or stacking and it makes a sweet, pleas ant flavored hay. 1 have tried all kinds of peas, par ticularly the conk pea which excells all others for vegetation. I find none equal to Spanish clover for veg etable production. Its cultivation is similar to the pea. Plant early in Spring in three feet rows, five or six seed in a hill, eight inches apart in the drill. Cultivate clean until the plants meet in the alley. It will continue to grow until it assumes the shape of a vine yet it is no vine, it has po tendrils nor does it ding like other vines. It 4rops its seeds as they mature and is readily bitten by frost. The first crop thoroughly seeds the land and in the Winter torn the land over broadcast and mark it off in three feet rows. In the Spring the seed Will coipe op promiscuously; run a narrow wing sweep in the alley and cultivate the second year as directed lor the first. Mat. Colemajt. P. S. I omitted to state that after the first crop, the ground being thoroughly seeded enabling the plant to come up and take an early growth in Spring, a forage crop can he cut in July with a sharp steel hoe onq to three mohfS where it first branches from the ground. After it, begins to spread and pnt on bloom plow it well with a sweep letting the wing of the sweep run as near as possible so as not to break the main stalk or tap root. This destroys all grass and weeds that may have come up since it was cut and gives the plant a now growth. It soon meets in the alley, braces itself, inclining upwards, one branch folding yver another until it forms a thic\c coat of vegetable fertilizer not far short of a jerop grown nil the season. Lake Worth. Editor Florida Agrimdturist: Thinking I might give some little item 6f information which some of your readers would like to know. I have thought I would write an arti cle on Lake Worth, "and the section of country acljoihing t it. Lake Worth is situated about 300 niliest south of Jacksonville in latitude between 27 and 28° north. The lake is 26 miles, long, and one mile wide, averaging four feet deep. It is within half a mile of the Atlantic Ocean, with which it connects near its northern end by a little inlet 50 yards wide. The lake runs parallel with the ocean north and south. The lake is salt water, and abounds in salt water fish of the tines.t quality, such as pompiuo, cavalia, mullet, sheep head, red snap pers, blue'fish, Bass, etc. The lake v, as an outlook which is cheerful) some boautiful ThP* lake can be appruae-neu uy sail or steam vessels to its inlet, and light draught ones can enter it. Also we have inland navigation to the lake by way of Indian river to Jupi ter light-liouse, thence up the Loca hatchee river to Lake Worth river, and up this to Saw Grass Creek, which comes within 250 yards of Lake Worth, near its northern end, and at this place, which is called the Haul Over, Is a railroad, 250 yards long, for transporting freight and hauling over sail boats. The land on the east side of the lake, which is between the lake and the ocean, is mostly rich hammock and morning-glory land; the ham mock is red land ; the morning glory black muck laud; with no growth on it, but weeds and morning glory vines. This belt of country on the east side of the lake will average about one-half mile in width, the extent of the lake which, as I have said is 26 miles long. The west side of the lake is bordered by belts of pine land and oak scrub laud, the pine land is thin in its soil, and for cultivation would need fertilizing, the oak scrub land which immediately borders the lake, is quite good for pine-apples, but would need fertiliz ing for orange trees or farm products. The water for drinking use, on the east side of the lake is slightly brack ish, but quenches thirst very well, it is cool. The water on the west side is fresh, pure and as good as can be found in the State. This country on Lake Worth is undoubtedly healthy, thero has been very little sickness on the lake, at any time, and that light fevers and some chills. The climate on Lake Worth is fine, mild, soft, cool in summer, and mild in winter, but somewhat bluster ing in the Fall —in- September and October—with an occasional sea storm. There has never been any frost or ice.seen on Lake Worth, so say the oldest settlers, aud there is no appearance nor evidence to the contrary; the warmth of the Gulf Stream which courses along the sea shore (within two to three miles) the whole length of Lake Worth, forbids iL ■ * The wild growth is quite different here from that of other parts of Flor ida which show*! the more tropical nature of this country. The Indian Rubber tree, the Gum Mas . tic, the Sea-Grape, the Coco-Plum the Red Stopper, ijic Crab tree aud •and Cocoa-nut. I believe it is not generally known that there are about twenty thousand Cocoa-nuts arrowing on the lake ;• but most of these' are young'trees, from one to two years old. There are about thirty Cocoa nut trees bearing on the lake. It has been stated that there were Co •coa-nutsbearing at Jupiter, in answer ,to an enquiry whether there were any beariug Cocoa-nuts in Florida. .There is only one tree at Jupiter, 'and it commenced to bear this year for the first time. The cultivated fruit trees growing on Lake Worth are cocoa-nuts, oranges, linjds, lemons, guavas, sapadillges,- 'sugar apples, maumee apples, avacado pears, dates, mangoes, pine-apples, pa paws,’’ bau angs, etc.; others, such as the mang o Steen, bread-fruit, rose apple, star •*pple, Chinese cherry, and coffee, it is bclieyed, can beigrown, but we have ye/-, and luxuriant on the lake in good soil. A great andjgood item is, we can have nearly all the garden vege tables all • Winter as well as the Spring, Summer and Fall. But Ido inform your readers, that the country at Lake Worth is a paradise, where nothing is to be done but to eat, drink and be merry, and revel in the soft tropical breezes. A man may live alter some fashion on fish, game, roots and herbs, and in a palmetto shantee, but this would be bordering on the barbarous mode of life, and is unbe coming a civilized man. Much work is to be done, building, clearing and planting, and many little drawbacks and disappointments to be encoun tered. The most promising thing on Lake Worth for profit, is, growing pine-apples and cocoa nuts; no draw back on these; no frost no insects to destroy them, no storm has injured them. They are a sure thing here. James M. Rogers. Increasing the Yalue of Kainit. The London Chamber of Agricul ture says that a quantity of fresh horse dung was taken to the science school (Cirencester), and placed in a large stone cistern and between dif ferent beds of manure of a few inch es thick, the kainit was scattered. The smell of the dung was strong and offensive, and the pupils com plained of it on the day on which it bad been mixed, but in a few hours the smell entirely disappeared. On the following day and subsequently no smell was observed, and when the manure was tested chemically about three months after, it was found that a mutual exchange had been effected, and instead oh sulphate of potash and carbonate of ammonia evolved from decomposed manure, there were carbonate of potash and sulphate of ammonia. It is unnecessary to say that the value of both of these boa ies is considerably greater than that of kainit, and that both of these have • oertain and phxnpt notion. - r^..r No. 33