the good quality of the sugar. They may be of different sizes for different sized trees, but for large trees they should hold at least fourteen or fiftoen quarts.


If from a large number of trees, cannot be

economically done without a horse and sled.

The old fashioned sap-yoke is of service where the grove is small and the "camp" centrally located. A pine tub, tapering towards the top, with an opening near one side of the head large enough to admit a pail, and provided with a tightly fitting lid is most convenient, perhaps. /


For holding the sap when brought to the "works," may consist of cither large cooper's casks or long troughs made by tightly grooving together wide two-inch planks. In either case they should be kept covered and occasionally scalded out to prevent the souring of the sap. It is also important that they be conveniently located so as to receive the sap from the cask in which it was gathered, without the labor of dipping. If lower than the sled, the sap may be drawn off through a faucet; if not, a siphon or bent tube, like the one shown in the annexed cut, will be found to answer an admirable purpose. Such a siphon, two inches in diameter and of sufficient length can be made by any tinner for less than a dollar, and it will pay for itself over and over many times during one season, in the saving it will make of time and labor. The short arm of the siphon should be long enough to reach within half an inch of the bottom of the gathering tub, and the other two to six inches longer

according to the required rapidity of flow.

With a simple tube of this sort two inches in diameter, tapered to one and a half inches at the outlet and with four inches difference in length of arm, an hundred gallon tub may be emptied in five minutes; during which the gatherer may occupy his time in renewing the

[ocr errors]
[ocr errors]

fire, attending to his kettles or evaporating pans, or anything else that requires to bo done.


A slightly elevated piece of ground near a running stream is the most desirable location.— Even if such a site cannot be found in the most central portion of the "sugar orchard" it is better to select such a spot, though at the sacrifice of a little more travel in the gathering. If the surface gently inclines, all the better, as it will afford a better opportunity to draw off the sap, first into the vat and secondly into the kettles or pans.


The old fashioned potash kettles hung by a chain to a pole by the side of a log will answer the purpose if nothing better can be had. We have used them in primitive times ourself, until arches &c, could be provided, and think we made some as good sugar in that way as ever delighted the palate of the most fastidious lover of sugar. But then it is certainly not the most convenient or economical way. Hollow sheet iron evaporating pans, some seven feet long and three or four in breadth are the most convenient and accomplish the work with a rapidity unknown to the use of the kettle.— It is not mnlikely that the Sorghum evaporating pans now coming into use could be made to answer a good purpose on a small scale.


May be built partly beneath the surface or entirely above, according to circumstances of locality. Usually those built about 2J feet above ground are more convenient and afford a better draft. The foundation should be laid in trenches, deep enough to escape the frost and built of good substantial stone or brick.— A heavy bar of cast iron should be laid across the open end at the requisite height for holding up the wood. The chimney need not be more than one two or three feet high acoording to the length of arch.

Ashed over the "works" is indispensable to the comfort of the manufacturer and to the cleanliness of the sugar.

To those who have large "orchards" and

[merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors][ocr errors][graphic]

The shed is 22 feet wide, entered with a team by large doors at 8,8. The boiler occupies a space 50 inches wide; 1 is the doors to fire grate and ash pit; 2 and 3 the places for the boiling pans; 4, the place for the heater; 6 the chimney; 6, heavy cast-iron bars across the arch for the pans to rest on; 7, small doors opening on to a platform five inches higher than the top of the arch, and behind which is another platform a foot higher still, upon which are placed the store tubs with a long door opening upwards behind them for unloading the sap from the gathering tubs.— The space beyond the doors 8,8, is used for storing wood, tubs, buckets, &c, and may be as large as desired.

The coming sugar season bids fair to be one of the most favorable that we of the Northwest have enjoyed for years, and as the present and prospective price of sugar warrants the giving

Swamp Lands for Grass and Cranberries.

Mr. Editor:—In my last communication I gave some of my experience in raising grass and grass seed. I will now, with your leave, give my opinion of the value of mucky swamps for raising grass and cranberries.

From my observations I am led to consider those lands of this kind, that have descent sufficient to enable you to drain them, the very best lands for grass that we have among us.— One of my neighbors, Capt. James Eaton, has a swamp of this description that he has been draining. He has sown a small piece of it to grass, and it produces from two to three tons per acre, without any manuring or dressing. He bedded up about an acre of it last spring, and sowed it to barley without any dressing. I assisted him in harvesting it in the fall and found it the stoutest crop of the kind, that I ever saw. lie also planted some beets and cabbages on one end of one of the beds, and they grew as rank as they would in any rich garden.

I have some* swampy land on the island which cleared some of the fire that I mentioned in my last. They were burnt very lightly. I sent to Boston and purchased a bushel of fowlmeadow grass seed and sowed over some of it. As I was rather short of seed I sowed it as thin as possible. Next year there grew from two to three tons per acre. The surface was so rough I could not mow it, so I reapt off the tops and thrashed out the seeds and had fifty bushels. But the land laid so flat that I could not drain it, and during the next winter it all died. I then bought a bushel of cranberries and sowed over a part of the swamp. A very few of them, however, came up. Where they did take they grew first rate and are just beginning to bear.

I have flowed a number of these swamp spots which I mean to clear up and set over to cranberry vines. Some individuals in this section of tha State, are doing well by cranberry culture. I have a small patch near home, where I took off the grass turf and set out vines They are beginning to bear very well. Last fall I gathered seven bushels from them, but not more than a tenth part of them bear, as yet. This proves to me that they are among the most profitable vegetable or small fruit that we can raise, where we have good muck swamps. It will cost no more to clear up one acre for cranberries than for corn, and after they get well to bearing they would produce from four to five hundred bushels to the acre.

Capt. Levi Coggins, of Surry, has a small cranberry patch from which he has gathered eighty bushels in one season. He informed me that his wife went out one day and sat down on a bench and picked ten quarts without moving from her seat. He had the curiosity to measure the ground which she had picked over and on calculating found that the yield was after the rate of eight hundred bushels per acre. I sold some of the seven bushels that I raised, for three dollars per bushel. I am told that they bring four dollars in Boston. Cranberries do not require a very deep soil of mud or muck, but they need to be flowed through the winter and not to be fed off by any animal. —John P. Carter, tn Maine Farmer.

Breaking Roaii8 In The Sngw.—One of the best methods is to bind two light plows upon the same side of the two runners of a sled—if right hand plows, on the right; if left hand, on the left—and then drive where the road should be made. The two furrows will make nice foot paths for the horses and the runners of the sled.

'The best time to cut timber is about the first of February. At this season the timber is free from sap. I have taken up posts cut at this season, which had been set twenty years, and they were perfectly sound.—John Johnston.

Kaiie and Tobacco.

The Indian Corn looked over the fence,
And what do you think he spied?

A field of tobacco, Just ready to bloom,
And stretching in lordly pride.

To the broad-leaved neighbor at once ho called.

In accents load and clear, "I thought yon belonged to a summer clime:

Pray, what are you doing here?"

So then, with a haughty air, replied

That plant of power and pelf, "Ton are pleased to ask of my business, Sir—

What do you do, yourself?"

"I feed the muscles, and blood, and bone,

That make our farmers strong, And furnish bread for the little ones

That round their tables throng.''

"I move in a somewhat loftier sphere,''

The foreign guest rejoined, "As the chosen friend and companion dear

Of men of wealth and mind.

"I'm the chief delight of the gay young spark;

O'er the wise my sway I hold:
I lurk in the bouk-worni student's cell—

In the dowager's box of gold.

"Thousands of hands at niy bidding work:

Millions of i-,irn 1 raise"—
He ceased to speak, and in angry mood

Responded the tasseled Malfe;

"You're in secret league with dyspeptic ills—

A merciless traitor band;
With clouds of r,moke you pollute the air,

With floods of slime, the land.

"You tax the needy laborer sore;

You quicken the drunkard's thirst;
You exhaust the soil—and I wish you'd go

To the place whence you came at first."

Sorghum or Impheo 1

Wuitxwatxr, January I6th, 1862.

Ed. or Wis. Farmer:—Can you inform the readers of the Farmer, through its pages, which of the many varieties of Sorghum or Chinese Sugar Cane is best adapted to cultivation in Southern Wisconsin; also where the seed can be obtained?

The time has evidently arrived, when if we would enjoy the luxury of sweetening, we must produce it ourselves or do the other more difficult way, pay roundly for it. I for one, am of the opinion that Wisconsin is capable of supplying herself with the common varieties, looking abroad only for the refined article of sugar. In accordance with the above conviction, I commend this to you, hoping that others may be of the same mind, and that the Fall of 1862 may verify the same. I remain Yours truly, A Subscrirer.

Answer.—Cultivators of the two varieties of sugar cane agree, it is believed, that the Chinese variety makes the best syj-up, while the African or Imphec ripens about twenty to thirty days earlier. We know of no one in this State who is already provided with seed of the Chinese variety, though it is presumed that most dealers in seeds and implements in all parts of the State are making arrangements to import it for their customers.

Of the Imphee, Mr. J. C. Plumr, of this place, has a considerable quantity, grown by himself, which he intends to offer for sale.—Ed.

How to Get a Bushy Hedge.

Though our failures have been many, we are still of the opinion that the hedge question is not yet exhausted. The scarcity of timber in some localities renders its affirmative decision of very great importance, and it may yet be hoped that some hedge plant will ere long be found that shall furnish our prairies with satisfactory living fences. The Osage Orange is certainly not the plant for our cold climate; but it is not so certain that the common thorn, the buckthorn, or something else will not prove sufficient, if properly cultivated. We say "properly cultivated," because we have long been convinced that no plant could entirely succeed if cultivated in the ordinary way.

Touching this subject, the following from the Gardener's Monthly so ably discusses certain causes of failure which we had thought to suggest, that we copy it into the Farmer entire:—

Most attempts at hedging look as if the owners would like to invert them. The top is thick enough where thickness is not needed; but between there and the base there is nothing to strengthen the moral principles of the passing school-boy, as he eyes the l'ippins and Spitzenburgs enclosed therein.

As usually managed, hedges are costly and unsatisfactory affairs. Properly treated, they are the least expensive of any kind of fence, and cheaper, by far, than the great majority of even those who have "faith in hedges" believe.

All hedges designed for protective fences, arc, in the first place, too high and to narrow at the base. No hedge need have more than a four feet rise, as it will do no harm for your neighbor's horse to sec what crops you arc growing; but it should be between three and four feet thick of the base, so that, unless he

has served in the cavalry under some bold dragoon, and "knows bayonets," heThay have no inclination to try the strength of spines of hawthorns or osage-oranges.

Before planting, sort your plants into three lots; that is, into strong, stronger, and strongest, taking them first up by the handful, and cutting off their heads to within nine or ten inches of the collar, or the point where the root portion commences. This is done with a sharp hatchet on a block of wood. The tap root is shortened at the same time. If you plant them any way, just as they come from the nursery, they will grow only in one way, which, Darwin says, is nature's way. In the "struggle for existence," those which get the start will crowd eat the weaker ones, and your hedge may have enough unevenness to satisfy any lover of pastoral poetry, but will fall short of your matter-of-fact expectations. After sorting, you can give the weaker choice the best chance of good soil, the next selection a little better, and the next the worst soil, if any such you have.

In planting, set them at an angle, as in the following sketch, setting the plants 12 inches


apart, in two rows, quincux fashion, which will place each plant about eight inches from the other. By thus sloping the plants, the shoots, as they rise perpendicularly, will give you a miniature forest, with every little rising trunk, but a few inches apart.—so thick, that should you get so poor as to have to give up taking your favorite agricultural journal, and, consequently, forget the proper after treatment of the hedge, though you may still have the usual crow's nest topped hedge for your neighbor to laugh at, there will be, at least, enough stems at the bottom, the result of your subscription to the volume that contains this article, to prevent his pigs from getting in after your crop of little pumpkins.

If your hedge grows as well as it ought to grow, by the middle of June it will have made shoots two feet in length. Then get a sharp scythe, and go along the whole line, cutting off six inches of the young growth the whole way. They may be cut flat, as in mowing a piece of meadow ground. It will occupy but a few minutes for every hundred feet, and will be all the care required for the first year. The sides must not be touched for this or any following year, until the required width has been reached—three or four feet. If the soil be good, however, and the plants strong, it will nearly do this the first year.

The second year, the plants in the middle of June, will have reached the four feet we propose, when it should again be gone over with the scythe, first cutting off the young tops sqaure to the desired height, and then cutting the sides, so that the apex is wedge-shaped, like an inverted V (j^). By cutting in the hedge so sharply and severely towards the apex, the strength of the plant will be thrown into the branches at the base, and enable them to push widely end freely.

Everything, it will be seen, depends upon the time and manner of pruning. It must be cut while the growth is active, in order to throw strength into the growing side-shoots; and it must be cut in a conical or wedge shape, in order that the light may be easily admitted to every part of the hedge's surface.

The third year after the hedge is " well set" —a technical term for filled up well from bottom to top—the wedge shape form may be modified to the truncate cone or half-oval, which is more pleasing to the eye.

Sometimes a few strong shoots will again push after the midsummer cutting. These should be cut away at the fall of the leaf, or they will interfere at the annual scythe cutting, on which the principal cheapness of our style of management depends.

We have not said anything of preparations for planting, the best mode of performing the operation, hoeing or after-cleaning; as, however well these may be performed, the permanent success ond cheapness of management of the hedge do not depend on them, and are, therefore, not within the abject proposed to ourselves in the present chapter.

How it Pays to Take the Farmer.

Mr. Kpitor :—Enclosed is one dollar for the Farmer the ensuing year. It seems somewhat strange to me that our agricultural friends will deprive themselves of the pleasure and profit of reading the Farmer.

Since I have lived in the State I have been a reader of the Farmer, and of late have been looking over matters, to see if it pays. Quite a number of ideas, productions and machines have been introduced to my notice by the FarMer, to my pleasure and profit. 1 will name an instance or two of the many that might be mentioned. The Peach Blow Potato was introduced to my notice by the Farmer. I sent off thirty miles, late in the spring of 1860, and got half a bushel of them by paying one dollar. Planted them late, on new breaking; dis

covered nothing special at digging, except a rather small crop, as was expected. In the spring of 1801, I planted them by the side of several varieties that are called good, and the yield was from one-fourth to one-sixth greater than the other kinds, and they are so much better than the others that my family do not want any other kind for table use. I ihink I have made as much by the l'each Blow Potato as the Farmer cost me.

I now have six volumes of the Farmer, which I intended to have bound, but as it was neglected, I sewed each volume together with a large waxed end, and these old volumes afford a very favorable opportunity for reference to almost any subject in Hie line of agriculture. I would not now take the subscription price for the old volumes, if I could not get others of the same kind. It Pays To Take The Farmer.

David Sears. Monticello, Green Co., Wuj., Jan'y 2d, 186-.

Balance the Accounts Now.

An editor, who unfortunately does business on the credit system, and is therefore compelled to keep a standing dunning notice, unpleasant to both himself and his readers, thus logically nudges his readers: "We don't want money desperately bad, of course not, but our creditors do; and no doubt they owe you. Now, you pay us, we'll pay them, and they'll pay you. We shall all then feel better to begin the year, and no one will be the poorer. Let us begin square all round." This is not bad advice for others than delinquent subscribers.

Now is the time to do it. Close up tho year by settling with everybody. Pay the butcher, shoemaker, blacksmith, doctor, minister, every body. Has there been an exchange of labor, of teams, seeds, implements, etc., among neighbors, and the accounts left unbalanced? Before the New-Year comes in, let them be adjusted. If impossible to get the ring of creditors broken into, at least let there be a looking over of accounts, and the actual balance be ascertained. One can meet his neighbors with a better countenance, if the actual indebtedness has been agreed upon, and acknowledged, than when there is on imaginary large debt somewhere concealed in the long "running account." "Short settlements make long friends," is a good old proverb. A man should know, at least once a year, precisely how he stands with the world. If he is doing well, the knowledge will comfort him; if not, it will rouse him to renewed exertion, make him more prudent and cautious, and enable him to provide against emergencies.

« ElőzőTovább »