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when gasoline is bought for fifteen cents a gallon.
The gasoline engine has proved its utility; tomorrow bids fair to see the electric motor the farmer's best hired man. Already it is being hitched to a vast number of farm machines, such as feed grinders, root cutters, fodder cutters, fanning mills, grindstones, circular saws, corn shellers, drill presses, silage cutters and' elevators, horse clippers, milking machines, grain separators, churns, vacuum cleaners, ice cream freezers, dough mixers, feed mixers and chicken hatchers.
A good idea of the amount of work a small motor will do on the farm is gained from the following: Six horsepower will drive a grain separator and thresh 2,500 bushels of oats in ten hours. Three horse-power furnishes all power needed to make 6,000 pounds of milk into cheese in one day. Six horse-power will run a feed mill grinding twenty bushels of corn an hour. Five horsepower grinds twenty-five to forty bushels of feed, or ten to twelve bushels of ear corn an hour. Seven horse-power drives an 18-inch separator, burr mill and corn cob crusher and corn sheller, grinding from twelve to fifteen bushels of good fine meal. Six horse-power will drive
a 30-inch circular saw, sawing from fifty to seventy-five cords of stove wood from hard oak in ten hours. Six horsepower saws all the wood four men can pile in cords. Twelve horse-power will run a 16-inch cutter and blower, and elevate the ensilage into silo thirty feet high at the rate of seven tons per hour. One horse-power will pump water from a well of ordinary depth in sufficient quantity to supply an ordinary farmhouse and all the buildings with water for all the ordinary uses.
But the highest efficiency on the farm neither begins nor ends with the gasoline engine or the electric motor. There is also the spreader which takes the refuse of the barnyard out to the fields and scatters it about like so many gold dollars. The fertilizer problem is one of the most serious confronting the farmer today. Shall he open up his fields to the commercial article or shall he husband his own resources and maintain the fertility of the soil by returning to it the elements of which it was robbed in producing a crop? The answer is simple. A ton of average fresh manure contains ten pounds of nitrogen, five pounds of phosphoric acid, and ten pounds of potash. At the prices which these elements of plant food would cost in commercial fer
tilizers the value of manure would be $2.50 a ton. This does not take into account the value of the organic matter furnished, which may be greater than that of the plant food. That this theoretical valuation is very conservative is shown by the result of many field experiments, by various experiment stations and by practical farmers. The value as shown by the increased crops has equaled and often exceeded this theoretical valuation.
The Pennsylvania station conducted a series of experiments with manure for twenty-five years. A four year rotation of corn, oats, wheat and clover was used and manure applied at the rate of six tons an acre every two years. Its value in the increased yield was $2.50 a ton. The Illinois station found the value of manure applied six tons to the acre once in a three year rotation of corn, oats and clover to be $2.70 a ton. The Ohio station in a series of experiments extending over thirteen years found the value of manure to be from $3 to $4 a ton. Values, of course, as every one under
stands, vary with the character of the soil.
None of these experiments mentioned, however, indicate the full value of the manure since they do not take into consideration its cumulative effect. The importance of this is shown by experiments at the Rothemstead Station in England. At this station one plot was given regular application of manure for twenty years and then the manuring discontinued for an equal length of time. At the end of the time the plot still gave nearly double the yields obtained from another plot similar in every way except that it had never been manured.
An experiment conducted in Jasper county, Missouri, resulted in an acre which had been treated with eight tons of manure yielding sixty-five bushels of corn, while an acre immediately adjoining—which had not been treated with natural fertilizer-—yielding only twentynine and a half bushels. Experiments conducted at Columbia, in the same state, resulted as follows: A tract on which corn had been grown continuously for twenty years yielded only three bushels to the acre. Immediately adjoining, a tract planted to corn for twenty years, but which had been liberally manured, yielded thirty bushels to the acre. Another tract, likewise adjoining, on which corn had been rotated with oats and clover yielded forty-nine bushels to the acre. Still a fourth tract, immediately adjoining, on which scientific management had been practiced to the extent of
soil continuously than you can take money out of a bank without making deposits."
The farmer who makes use of the barnyard manure must learn first of all to use this fertilizer when it is of the greatest value. Manure exposed for three months in an open barnyard during the winter and early spring loses nearly one-third of its fertilizing value. Such manure in field experiments produced increase to the value of $2.15 a ton on a ten-year average, while the fresh manure gave an average increase of $2.96 for the same period, showing a loss in effectiveness of 81 cents per ton or 27 per cent. There are seasons of the year, however, when it is impos
Fkrtilizkk Is Spread With Improved Machinery.
both rotating crops and manuring the field, yielded sixty bushels to the acre. Even more striking proof of the value of fertilizers and rotation of crops comes from Illinois. Sixty years ago a man bought a farm of 120 acres in that state. It has remained in his possession continuously. He has farmed it without plan or purpose other than to eke out a precarious livelihood. The land formerly yielded thirty-five bushels of wheat to the acre. It has been planted to wheat, year after year, for half a century. Last year it yielded two bushels to the acre. The last corn crop on that land ran ten bushels to the acre, while in the neighbor's field the yield averaged forty bushels to the acre. That Illinois farmer is a pitiable reminder of the days when farming was not a science, but was simply an "In God we trust" way of getting from the cradle to the grave. That man never heard or heeded the doctrine preached by James J. Hill: "You can no more take wheat from the
No More Of This.
sible or impractical to haul direct to the field. In such times it is the farmer who most effectively conserves this important fertilizer who finds his income and net profits the largest. A Nebraska farmer thus tells how he proceeds: "I have on my farm a building especially constructed for the storing of manure during the winter when I am compelled to hold it for some months. This building is large enough to hold the accumulations for several months, which amount to several tons. It is built a reasonable distance from the barn, so as not to be unhandy. I haul manure to the field where I think it is most needed until the ground gets soft, so I am bound to stop, and then 1 have a carrier track running from the barn to my manure house, to save the labor of handling. I run the manure every few days from the stables to the storage house, which is covefcd with a good roof to keep the rain and snow out. In hauling direct from the barn I also mix some other fertilizing material, such as rich dirt, hen manure or anything I can gather up around my farm, so as to have a well balanced fertilizer for all crops. I have the storage house built on a slightly rolling place with a reservoir dug in the ground on the lower side to catch all the liquid manure that runs out, to keep it from being wasted in washing away. This liquid is pumped directly back into the heap, thus keeping the heap moist, and in case the liquid is not sufficient to keep the heap moist, I sprinkle a little water on to keep it so. It is very important that this manure be kept packed firmly all of the time to exclude the air, and in order to do this I have it so arranged that I can turn a bunch of heavy hogs in when I so desire, to gather up any waste grains that may be in the manure and in so doing they pack it very firmly and nicely."
Such labor and thoroughness pay well. Take the state of Iowa, for instance, with its annual approximate production of 340,000,000 bushels of corn. 140,000,000 bushels of oats and 6,000,000 bushels of wheat. Until the past few years the Iowa farmer did not stop to consider that in the production of these crops the soil had given up approximately 650.000,000 pounds of nitrogen, 10.000,000 pounds of phosphorus and 345,000,000 pounds of potassium, which if purchased in the commercial form at the current prices would cost about $130,000,000, or in other words practically the annual value of the entire crop of the state. It is since the Iowa farmer has figured this out—sometimes, it must be admitted, after a personal loss—that he has taken more extensively to live stock farming, rather than grain farming, and the silo has come to dot the hills and valleys. "If I had to take my choice between a corn crib, a barn or a silo and could have only the one, I would choose the silo," preached the experts on the dairy trains which traversed Iowa and the Missouri Ozarks last spring. When they went on to show that to husk corn and bring it into the crib results in only sixty per cent of the feeding value of the corn being secured, leaving forty per
Mowing By Machinery Is The Kule Today
cent in the field, while using ensilage saves all the feeding value, their logic became plain. As a result of those trips thousands of silos are being built.
There is every bit as important a lesson in the proper disposition of space so as to insure the maximum of crops at the minimum of labor and expense. It was to teach this lesson that a model farm was exhibited last fall at the Missouri land congress at Springfield, the Missouri state fair at Sedalia and the Industrial land congress at Little Rock, Arkansas. This model was constructed on a scale of three feet to the inch and was built on a table ten feet wide and twenty feet long. It was inspected by thousands of farmers who learned from it the lesson of conserving space and making every stroke count by minimizing waste of time in moving from one field to another.
On display, the model had a -south front and the house was located to represent eight feet from the front and ninety feet from the east line; the barn one hundred feet from the front and on a line seventy-five feet west of the house. The drive was located to begin forty feet from the east line and was laid on easy curves, passing by the house and leading to the barn, a clump of lilacs in
the center of the driveway answering for a turn around. The drive and the road in front were made of crushed limestone with a sifted dust finish, suggesting good roads and the importance of a driveway, which, by the way, should be the foundation of any lawn. The driveway connected with the steps from the front porch and also the side porch, the barn and the sheds, cellar door and engine house, suggesting convenience for chores and the saving of time and steps in the day's round on the farm.
In the vegetable garden south of the barn were located the hot-bed and cold frame; west of the barn, the barn lot with water trough and north of the barn the pig pen and the pig trough. Both poultry yard and pig pen connected with the barn lot and the pasture. North of the pasture and extending across the farm was a field, suggesting a combination of field crops, planting first corn with cowpeas in the middle of corn rows when the corn is laid by and after cutting the corn, the cowpeas to be pulled or used as pasture. East of the pasture and next to this field was located the apple orchard and a patch of alfalfa. The peach orchard was placed north of the poultry yard, and on the east side of the apple orchard were placed consecutively the blackberries, raspberries, Irish potatoes and sweet corn, sweet potatoes, watermelons, strawberries and asparagus, then blending the horse-radish with peonies, german iris, phlox, hollyhocks, etc., locating the currants and gooseberries in the border of the shrubs ornamenting the lawn.
Taken as a whole the model suggested to the farmer the importance of a plan for making his fields dovetail together. It was a vivid reminder to him that houses are too often merely stuck here and there and that other buildings are located more often than otherwise by chance or guesswork. It illustrated the