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culture of tobacco is confined to three heavy black soil of Santa Clara Province. . rather well-marked districts. First and The tobacco produced here is heavier and foremost the world-famous Vuelta-Abajo, stronger than that of the western provwhich is located in the light, sandy soil of inces. It largely finds a market in Pinar del Rio province. The tobacco for Europe, though a considerable proporthe best of the mild but rich and fragrant tion goes to the United States, where it is cigars, for which Cuba is so famous, comes mixed with some of the poorer home
from this region. Second in importance grown tobacco for making the cheaper is the Partidos district, situated in the red grade of cigars. Prices for this tobacco lands of the western part of Havana and are less than for the finer grades, but the the eastern part of Pinar del Rio prov- yield is heavy and the business is proving inces. Here broad, thin leaves are pro- profitable and planting is being constantly duced that make the handsomest cigar extended. wrappers, but the aroma and high qual- Cuban tobacco and cigars go to practiity of the best Vuelta-Abajo leaf is lack-cally all parts of the world, but the United ing. It is on these soils that cheese-cloth States is by far the largest customer. The tents are giving the best results. Third, demand there of recent years has been for is the Remedios district, located on the a mild light-colored cigar. This has necessitated some changes in cultural methods. pasturage,
pasturage, which gives good grazing Tobacco is so sensitive a plant and re- throughout the entire year. This is parsponds so promptly to slight changes in ticularly 'true of the eastern provinces, soil and climatic conditions that even on where the tendency is to have two short the best managed regas it is impossible dry seasons during the year instead of one always to produce more than a small per long one, as is the rule in the neighborcent of the class of tobacco that will com- hood of Havana. Before the war Cuba mand the highest prices. The possible was heavily stocked with cattle, but they profits from tobacco growing are much were preyed on by both armies to such an greater than from cane, but the risks also extent that at its close the industry was are greater, and vastly more skill is re- almost extinguished, and it has since been quired to handle the crop properly. Its necessary to make heavy importations in culture should only be attempted by order to restock the pastures and provide experts. It is not, like cane, a crop that the local beef supply. These cattle have is adapted to the general farmer. A for- come from all the surrounding countries, tune awaits any expert cultivator who especially from Porto Rico, Florida, shall succeed in solving all of the intri- Texas, Mexico, Columbia and Venezuela. cate problems connected with the proper The result is a mixture of rather poor manuring, cultivating, curing and fer- races, mostly of the old Spanish type. menting of tobacco in Cuba.
These serve well enough for work oxen, The cattle industry occupies the third which are in strong demand for the sugar place in Cuban agriculture. The country plantations, and they are used in the local is peculiarly favorable for cattle raising markets for beef. It is realized by the on account of its equable climate and fine more far-seeing of the cattle men, how. ever, that with such large areas of fine ods of innoculation to produce immunity pasturage the supply of cattle will within from this disease now makes it possible to a few years be more than sufficient for obviate this difficulty, and there is nothing these local demands and that it will be to prevent herds of grade Herefords and necessary to look to the foreign markets Polled-Angus shortly replacing those of for an outlet.
the present thin, slow-maturing Spanish To compete successfully in the world's types.
market it will be necessary to produce a The swine industry, too, is an important better quality of beef than that afforded one in some localities and it is destined to at present, and a movement has just be- grow rapidly in importance. At the presgun to introduce bulls of the best beef ent time large quantities of lard, hams types in order to breed up a better race of and bacon are imported from the States, cattle. Formerly this was a difficult mat- while as a matter of fact they can be proter as from three-fourths to nine-tenths of duced here cheaper than there. Palmicho, all northern cattle imported died of Texas the rich, oily fruit of the royal palm, is a or tick fever. The success of recent meth- valuable hog food, and it is produced in
great abundance by these beautiful trees. mercial planting was begun only four or Mule raising is an almost unknown indus- five years ago, and the oldest orchards are try in Cuba, but it is one that will surely just coming into bearing. Probably a prove to be profitable. Mules are in total of eight or ten thousand acres has strong demand here at high prices and already been planted, and while some they will be used more and more to re- problems remain to be solved, the indusplace oxen in all kinds of agricultural try seems destined to become a lucrative work.
and important one. Cuban oranges are Since the American occupation the of good quality, but the grape fruit is growing of fruits and vegetables for even better and already commands the northern shipment has attracted consid- highest prices. Citrus fruit is being erable attention. Soil, climate and geo- planted on all kinds of soils, but there are graphical position all combine to favor reasons for thinking that the best results these industries, and it seems probable will be obtained on the red lands and the that they will soon grow to large propor- sandy lands of the tobacco district. tions. Even before the war, pineapples The principal vegetables grown for were shipped to the States in considerable shipment are tomatoes, eggplant, peppers, quantities. The business has proved a onions and potatoes. Heretofore the prosafe and fairly profitable one and the duction has been largely confined to a quantity grown is constantly increasing. small irrigated district near Guines in This year the shipments reached nearly a Havana province, but it has now been million boxes. Pineapples are grown demonstrated that these vegetables of a almost exclusively on the red lands, but superior quality can be grown on the some of the sandy lands are also well sandy lands without irrigation. The adapted to this crop.
amount of such land available is very Oranges and other citrus fruits have large. The extent of the industry there been grown abundantly on the island from fore need only be limited by the ability to time immemorial, but their extensive com- find profitable markets