The image shows the dimensions for building a plank frame barn, keeping the cost of a new barn to a economical minimum.
MOTHER EARTH NEWS STAFF
This page contains excerpts from issues of THE COUNTRY
GENTLEMAN dated 1915.
Feeding Poultry Potatoes
When properly handled potatoes make an excellent feed for
poultry. They may be fed after being thoroughly cooked, but
should never be given raw. If given in a mash of ground
grains the proportion should not exceed fifteen or twenty
per cent of the complete mixture. As the cooked product is
quite similar to corn meal in feeding value, such feeds as
bran, middlings, ground oats and meat feeds should be fed
in connection with them. After young chicks are weaned they
may be given cooked potatoes in the same proportion as has
been suggested for the mature fowls.
An Economical Barn
Time was when barn-building materials could be had for the
cutting or the hauling. But the present increasingly high
prices of lumber have forced barn builders to economize
wherever it is possible within the limits of safety.
The plank frame barn design shown herewith makes every
stick of lumber do its share of the work. (Click on the "Image Gallery" to view the barn design.) The Iowa
Experiment Station is striving to help Iowa farmers not
only to solve their problems about livestock and field
crops, but to build better barns at the lowest possible
cost and to plan them for the greatest efficiency.
This barn-framing plan has met great favor among barn
builders. There are no heavy and long timbers in its
design. The rafters are of two-by-six-inch material and the
wall studding is of the same size. The joists are
two-by-twelves, supported by heavy built-up girders at the
center. The roof arches, the wall studding and the joists
are all securely tied together and well braced to overcome
every possible pressure. The rafters, studding and joists
are all placed two feet center to center throughout the
length of the barn.
In Iowa a number of barns of this type have been
constructed. An estimate shows that they cost about a
dollar a square foot of floor space.
Feed for Finishing Steers
Is any one of the following combinations a sufficient
ration for fattening beef: First, corn and soy beans and
shredded corn fodder; second, corn and cow peas and
shredded corn fodder; third, corn and a mixture of soy
beans and cowpeas and shredded corn fodder? —
B. P., Ohio.
Any one of the rations listed might be sufficient to finish
steers, but whether the gains would be profitable or not is
a different question. If used, the corn and beans or peas
should be fed in the proportions of about four to one. The
absence of any succulent material in the feeds is serious,
while the presence of corn and corn fodder in any
considerable amount argues the need for a silo on the
Soy beans or cowpeas, or both, will make a fairly
satisfactory substitute for cottonseed meal in steer
feeding, and are fed in about the same amounts. If
identical in price cottonseed meal might make gains
somewhat more economically. There has been little
experimental feeding of cowpeas to steers, because the
yield is small in the Middle West; the peas ripen
irregularly, and the price is high. When grown for feed in
that section they are commonly used as forage.
Soy beans are heavier yielders and have been fed to steers
with fairly satisfactory results. They seem to be
especially good for short feeding periods, but after three
months or more steers consuming them may lose their
keenness of appetite, and gains will decline slightly.
Probably because of the very high fat content, soy-bean-fed
cattle have lacked firmness of flesh, resulting in a slight
reduction in selling price.
With silage at hand a daily ration more satisfactory than
any of those given and about as profitable as any to be had
would be shelled corn twelve to fifteen pounds, corn silage
twenty to twenty-five pounds, soy-bean meal two and a half
to three pounds, and some shredded corn stover in addition.
Grasses for Bottom Land
I have some river-bottom, white, sandy land that is
very loose. It produces cotton well but not corn, as worms
eat the roots. Will this land produce alfalfa, and if not,
what is the best grass for it? The soil stands drought well and can kick up moisture any time. —
J. H. D., Ark.
If your land does not overflow so water would cover the
crop for more than twenty-four hours, I see no reason why
you should not grow alfalfa profitably. It is more
difficult to get a stand, of course, where the soil is so
loose, but once started the alfalfa plants will bind the
soil more closely together. Such land should be sown in the
fall, when there is a minimum amount of wind and also when
there is sufficient moisture in the soil not only to
germinate the seed but also to support the young plants
until more rain falls. Do not plant the seed too deep in
such loose soil, as the plants will have difficulty in
getting through. Better try out a small acreage before
going into the crop on a large scale.
Sudan grass should make a big yield of bay on your land and
is worthy of a thorough trial in your section. Bermuda or
Kentucky blue grass will be your best pasture grass.
Pickling and Preserving
Four pounds of apricots, four cupfuls of sugar and four
cupfuls of water. Drop the apricots, which must be large
and perfect, in boiling water and cook for ten minutes,
then drain thoroughly.
Make a sirup with the sugar and water, and when it forms a
soft ball when tried in water put in the apricots. Remove
from the fire, turn the fruit occasionally and let it stand
overnight in a slow oven. Repeat this operation four times,
each time skimming out the fruit and letting the sirup just
come to a boil. The fifth time make a new sirup, as in the
first place, and when it boils and stands the test put in
As soon as the sirup is cool dip out the fruit and place it
in a pan to harden and candy, keeping it at a temperature
of sixty-five degrees. When candied place in boxes between
layers of waxed paper.
Bring to the boiling point a pint and a half of vinegar
into which have been stirred half a cupful of brown sugar,
a tablespoonful of whole cloves and a dozen blades of mace.
Boil all together for five minutes, and set aside to cool.
Have ready three quarts of chokecherries and put them into
glass jars. Strain the spices from the cold vinegar, and
pour the latter over the fruit, filling the jars to the
brim. Seal at once.
Citron Melon Preserve
Cut the melon in small pieces about two inches thick and
remove skin and seeds. Weigh and measure the pieces. For
four quarts take a scant half-cupful of salt and sprinkle
it over the melon; pour on cold water to cover and let
stand twenty-four hours. Drain thoroughly and boil in fresh
water for about half an hour, changing the water if needed
to remove salt.
Drain again, and to each pound of fruit add three-quarters
of a pound of sugar and one lemon thinly sliced. Again
cover with enough water to dissolve the sugar and simmer
until transparent and tender.
Quince and Papaw Preserve
Eighteen quinces, papaws and sugar.
Peel, quarter and core the quinces. Weigh and put them into
a preserving pan, cover with water and cook slowly until
tender. Take the same weight of papaws, which have been
peeled and cut into pieces about the same size as the
quince quarters. Scald well and drain. Add to the quinces
their weight in sugar, the well-drained papaws and the
juice of the skins and the cores of the quinces, which have
been well cooked in water and strained. Cook slowly until
thick. Seal in jars.