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GOVERNMENT FREE SEED.
Galloway Has New Free Seed Plan— Secretary Wilson Would Sub stitute Valuable Feature for Old Abuse. We have frequently called atten tion to the great waste of public money which takes place every year in the free distribution of common varieties of garden seeds. It has been called a farce and a fraud, and it is something of both. It should be abolished. The original idea, that of finding and disseminating new and valuable varieties is still being carried out by the department, and is a good one, but it forms a small part of the gigantic seed business now carried on by the government. Dr. Beverly T. Galloway, chief of the bureau of plant industry, has de vised anew system of seed and plant distribution which he hopes to induce Congress to adopt in place of the an tiquated and worse than useless meth od of distributing free seeds now pop ular with the men who seek to curry favor with their agricultural consti tuents. Some of the most prominent Representatives and Senators, notably Senators Lodge and Hale, have sought earnestly in sessions past to abolish the ridiculous system of free seed dis tribution now in vogue, though to no effect, but there is reason to hope that members of Congress will appreciate the advantages to be derived from Dr. Galloway’s new plan and that it will be adopted. The new plan consists in the in troduction of new varieties of seeds and plants, together with the publi cation of information bearing on their cultivation, the seeds, plants and bul letins to be distributed on the order of members of Congress and to farm ers whom they will name. All the de tails of the plan have been carefully worked out, and Dr. Calloway has al ready submitted to members of the agricultural committees maps and da ta showing the practicability and the benefits to be derived from the adop tion of his substitute. Nor would this substitute be wholly in the nature of an experiment, as in a small way Dr. Galloway has already attempted the scheme and has found it to work most satisfactorily when condutced by the department independent of the members of Congress. In outlining this plan Dr. Galloway has submitted to the members of the agricultural committees eighteen sub divisions of the plan, among them be ing “Extension of alfalfa growing in to states where it is not now a staple crop,” “Extension of cold-resistant al falfas,” “Extension of dry-land alfal fas,” “Distribution of new varieties of cotton,” “Introduction of matting nlants and their culture in the United States,” “Improvement of cowpeas,” “New tobacco varieties,” “Introduc tion and testing of alkali-resisting crops,” “Grains for high altitudes,” “Adaptation of winter oats,” “Sugar beet seed growing,” “Improvement of corn,” “Bulb growing in the United States,” “Cultivation of drug plants,” “Dry land arboricultural work,” “In troducing of hardy apples” and “In troduction and breeding of citrus fruits.” In operating, the member of Com gress will select certain farmers whom he believes to be willing to undertake experiments in co-operation with the department, will furnish their names and addresses to the department, which will send out the seeds, cut tings, bulletins, etc., under the frank of the member. As fast as new in formation is obtained it will be sent to the same men in the same manner. The farmers selected will be requested to furnish to the department the re sults of their experiments, and in this way thousands of farms would be converted into miniature experiment stations, while doubtless many farm ers would be put in possession of crops and information which would yield them handsome profits. Speaking of his plan Dr. Galloway says: “We import in the neighborhood of $4,000,000 or $5,000,000 worth of drugs each year, and preliminary investiga tions would indicate that a consider able portion of these drug plants might be grown at home. The work would be equally applicable to nearly all the states bordering on the Atlan tic coast, including New England, and also some of the Western States, such as Ohio, Indiana, Illinois, Wisconsin and Northern lowa. The object would be to introduce the seeds of promising drug plants and encourage the production of the crops, this be ing in co-operation with individual farmers and others.” Speaking of the introduction of hardy apples, Dr. Galloway says: “This work would be applicable to the entire tier of Northern States from Maine to and including Montana. The object would be to find out, through a study of published accounts of travellers and explorers, where m different parts of the world are to be found apples or forms related to their: which are likely to prove valuable in the breeding of hardier and more drouth-resisting apples for this north ern country. This work would be largely done in co-operation with the experiment stations.” Secretary Wilson is especially inter ested in the introduction of matting plants in the United States, for it is a part of the gospel to the Secretary of Agriculture that it is a sin to im port what can just as well be grown in the United States. To that end the department has for some time been conducting experiments. Dr. Gallo way says that the United States im ports about $5,000,000 worth of mat tings annually, and that he believes the material from which they are made could just as well be grown in this country as abroad. There is, in his estimation, plenty of land in the Carolinas, Georgia, Alabama, Missis sippi and Louisiana which could profitably be devoted to growing these plants. But to obtain the best results it is important that only the best va rieties be grown and that the growers be started right. The Department of Agriculture has been and is sending agricultural ex plorers to all parts of the world to ascertain new and profitable features of agriculture in its broadest sense; to Chinese Tibet and Chinese Turkestan after alfalfas and hulless barleys; to Russian Turkestan for naked oats; to Han Chung for glutinous rice; to Ara bia for improved varieties of dates and so on. It now wants to extend these explorations which have already, it is claimed, resulted profitably; and to secure the co-operation of individ ual farmers in testing the results, and it is believed this can be done with profit to the farmers and benefit to the members of Congress, and that THE FLORIDA AGRICULTURIST. the useless and wasteful free seed dis tribution can be abolished without the loss of a vote to the bucolic candidate. GOOD ROADS. They are Badly Needed in Nearly Every Section of the State. Our State exchanges favor good roads, yet they have little to say on the subject except at long intervals. Pa tient, persistent work would win; no thing else will. Two items which have appeared in State papers are quoted below. The Suwannee Democrat says: There has been enough talk about good roads in Florida to pave all the highways and byways of Hades with our good intentions on the sub ject, but the bad roads are all here yet and the good ones still repose in the ideal future. But there will be one man in the next legislature who intends to take hold of this subject with a firm grip and inaugurate a comprehensive road system for the whole State. The Fort Pierce Tribune tells about him and his plans as follows: “Hon. C. F. Olmstead, representa tive in the legislature from St. Lucie county, is preparing a bill to pre sent to the next legislature, provid ing for a thorough system of good roads all over the State. Mr. Olm stead has not yet progressed far enough in the preparation of his bill for dhe Tribune to give a draft of it, in fact, Mr. Olmstead realizes the necessity of consulting good roads advocates all over the State, as well as constitutional lawyers, before com pleting his bill, but the main feature of it will be uniform tax of two cents per acre on all taxable lands in the State for a period of five years. This would produce a revenue of about $(500,000 a year, and in the period given would raise sufficient to build trunk roads in every section -of the State. The other item is from the Monti cello News: The News hammers away all the year round on the subject of good roads, and a stock-law. These ques tions will be agitated till they are set tled. This country makes a rotten showing in the agricultural reports. This is due largely to the shiftless style of farming that prevails under the operation of the free range. Progress demands a change. It will come in time. Spanish Peanuts. I cannot give up this crop so long as I stay on the farm. It has so many advantages over other crops. First, it has no insect enemy; second, it will withstand more dry w r eather than any other crop, and third, poor sandy land that will not pay in any other crop, will make a fine crop of peanuts. I had this year twenty acres in peanuts that easily made fifty bush els per acre on land that would not make over eight bushels of corn with out fertilizer. They make the finest hay I ever fed, when properly cured. If you pull them up in the evening, and the sun shines bright the next day, take them in late in the evening and you will have the sweetest hay you ever saw. My horses will leave alfalfa to eat peanut-hay cured in this way. The peanuts are the finest hog feed I ever fed. If you want to feed your hogs on peanuts, have a block in your barn or crib and a sharp hatchet and you can chop off the bunch of peanuts from a pint to nearly a quart on each root. You can chop off two bushels of peanuts while you are shelling one bushel of corn. They will fatten hogs faster than anything else, and keep them healthy. Some people say there is no money in peanuts, but \ know there is, for I get money the year I Poultry I Supplies. | If you want eggs during the win- II ter, you must feed Animal Foods, such as I Meat Meal, I Beef Scraps, I Blood Meal, I Bone Meal, to take the place of the insects, a worms, etc., whicji poultry get in 9 summer. OYSTER SHELLS and GRIT are also prime necessities.. I Write for Prices and Catalogue tell ing what to use for Success and Profit with Poultry. I T. W. Wood & Sons, Seedsmen, I RICHMOND, - VIRGINIA. I We carry complete stocks of Cyphers' ■ Incubators and Brooders, Poultry Foods, Egg Producers, Lice and Insect Powders, Poultry Remedies, etc. Helpful Catalogue mailed free. buys the SWIFT CQ SAFETY RAZOR None better made. Money back if not satisfactory. Can be “honed” like any razor. Simple. Only two Pieces. You should try it. Jas. M. Osborn, Daytona, Fla. Save your treeslL Kill San Jose Scale and other destruc tive parasites with a spraying solution of Good’s whaieon Soap No. 3 Sure death to insects. No sulphur, salt* Mineral oils, or any substances harmful to plant life. Endorsed by U. S. Department of Agriculture. Pocket Manual of cause, treatment and cure of tree diseases, free. Write today. JAMES GOOD, Origina Maker, 949 North Front St., Philadelphia. round for mine. I am now supplying two stores, besides I fatten my hogs, and feed them to my horses and cows. Brother farmers, try them by all means. Plant in rows three feet apart. Keep clean and you need not worry about the yield. If you plant about April 20, they will be ready to harvest about August 20. They are a most valuable crop.—G. D. Perego, in Cultivator. Subdued a Kicking Horse. The Spirit of the West gives directions for curing a kicking horse. If you have no sheepskin, anything else which would be heavy enough to swing back and not be injured by the kicks of the horse would answer quite as well. A man had a kicking horse. He hung an old sheep pelt up behind the horse just where he could see it, and let him kick till he got enough of it. At first no doubt the horse thought that pelt was the worst looking thing that he had ever seen in all the days of his'life. He peeled his eyes back at it and made up his mind that the old evil one must surely be right after him. And he kicked and he kicked and he kicked. But the more he kicked the faster the thing fell back on to his heels. All night long he worked at it, until the sweat ran down his legs and he was “all of a trimble.” Then he stopped; and, by the gray of the morning, took a good square look at the miserable thing that had been worrying the life out of him. It was nothing but an old sheep skin. It made him so ashamed to think how he had wasted so much time and strength on a thing like that, that he stopped kicking! And after that he never kicked. 15