Pasture Management, Earthworms and Soil, and Other Old Time Farm Magazine Stories

Pasture management and the value of earthworms and soil were among the stories covered in old time farm magazines in the second decade of the 20th century.

| May/June 1979

The following farm magazine stories originally appeared in Successful Farming magazine in 1915, and are reprinted by permission of Meredith Publishing. 

Pasture Management

The really proper way to meet the pasture shortage, is not to have any—provide for the pasture season before it begins.

Plan to have the pasture lands divided; then, while the stock are grazing one of these down, the other will be coming on, and can be profitably utilized when grass in the first lot is getting short. They thus can be alternated all through the summer, and if still another small lot can be held in complete reserve for late fall and early winter grazing, its value can hardly be over estimated. These plans not only yield greater profits from t he pasture lands right at the time, but their permanent growth, vigor and profitableness will be maintained by such management.

Where one sees that his pasture will run short if he keeps what stock he has on hand, and he does not wish to sell any, he may meet the usual pasture shortage by seeding some part of his fields to a growth that will furnish supplementary grazing at the period during which most herds are practically without pasture. Oats, cane and clover may be sown on some field, putting on about one and a half bushels of oats to the acre, thirty pounds of cane, and seven or eight pounds of clover. The soil should be well pulverized for a seed bed, and thoroughly harrowed after seeding.

Let it be understood that such a growth will furnish good grazing all summer, fall and early winter. The oats, coming on quicker than either of the other growths, will be ready for pasturing very early in the summer, probably about June. Then, the cane, which is somewhat slower of growth, is better adapted to withstanding the dry weather that usually comes with mid-summer, and 1t will furnish an abundant pasturage for late summer and early fall; the clover, being still slower of development than either of these, will supply the grazing for late fall and winter. Or, where it is desired to promote fertility of the soil, the clover can be pastured awhile, then turned under for the next season's cropping. Again, it can be left standing, a sprinkling of timothy and clover seed scattered over it the following spring, and a permanent meadow thus established. With all these advantages, and considering that such a pasturage will support stock at the rate of one head to the acre or a little more, it is a combination well worth trying—M.C.

Earthworms and Soil

The humble earthworm has other uses than to be impaled on a hook for bait; to the farmer and gardener it is very useful. The many ways that this lowly form of life aerates and assists in the disintegration of rocky soils is interesting.

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