« EdellinenJatka »
facture of iron, which is, or rather has been very extensively carried on in this county, and the making and getting to the lake of lumber from the forests in the interior, furnish employ for a vast number of teams, for the supply of which the oats raised in the county are always insufficient, and large quantities are annually required to be purchased abroad and brought on to supply the deficiency; hence the price of oats has generally been higher here than in any of the cities, by the cost of transportation. The effect has been that our farmers have turned their attention largely to the production of this crop. The quantity of land sowed to oats this year is about 16,000 acres; the average yield per acre, 40 bushels; and the amount of the crop, 610,000 bushels. The crop this season has been one of the best ever raised. In numerous instances the average yield of entire fields has been as high as 60, 70, and even 75 bushels per acre. The abundance of the crop, added to an extensive decrease in the amount of business connected with the manufacture of iron, has reduced the price of oats to 32 cents per bushel of 32 lbs. In former years the price has oftener been above than below 40 cents per bushel.
Rye.—With farmers generally, this is not a favorite crop; as on a good land, either wheat or oats usually produces a more valuable crop. As a general thing rye is only sown upon land that is either too sandy and light, or too much worn to produce a good crop of wheat or oats. Number of acres in rye this year, 2,000; produce, 30,000 bushels.
Barley, buckwheat, peas, and beans, are cultivated only to a limited extent, and chiefly for home consumption.
Root Crops.-Of root crops, (other than potatoes,) grown in ordinary field culture, the amount produced is estimated at 150,000 bushels; of which 100,000 bushels-are carrots, and the remainder beets and turnips. They are usually fed out to stock.
Orchard Products. The soil and climate of this county, are peculiarly well adapted to the cultivation of the apple, pear and plum. The cherry, especially of the Duke and Morello families,
thrives well. The peach, nectarine, apricot, and quince, are only half-hardy with us, and are not much cultivated. The plum is subject here, as elsewhere, to the ravages of the curculio, which, unless destroyed by hand-picking, or by swine, or poultry, seldom leaves much to the owner. The pear is equally hardy with the apple, and grows and bears as well. The blight, in any of its forms, is hardly known. Heretofore the cultivation of this fruit has been confined exclusively to the garden, and even there it has been very much neglected. Within a few years, hɔwever, it has received increased attention; and in some parts of the county, orchards are beginning to be planted.
of the apple, there are orchards of greater or less extent, upon nearly every farm. These were generally planted by the first settlers, with trees grown from seeds of their own planting. In In after years, a portion of the trees, in most orchards, were engrafted with improved varieties, but the larger portion were left unchanged. In the progress of the temperance reformation, many orchards were cut down; and a general neglect in the care and culture of what was left soon followed, from the effect of which, greater numbers have since perished than were at first destroyed, and for many years our orchards were generally in a dilapidated and miserable condition. Within a few years, however, a new interest in the subject of fruit culture has been awakened, and immense numbers of trees of choice varieties are now being annually planted out. Better care is also taken of our old orchards yet remaining, and the improved quality of the fruit is beginning to show the effect of more generous treatment. Our apple crop this year was lighter than usual, the fruit less fair. Most of the fruit is consumed in the county. The ordinary price of good grafted varieties, is fifty cents per bushel.
Dairy.—The fact that ours is an importing, rather than exporting county, so far as relates to the products of the farm, necessarily dictates to the farmer a scale of productions, differing materially from one that would be appropriate under other circumstances. As a general rule, the farmer here realizes the largest profit, from the production of those articles, in the cost of which, to the con
sumer, if procured from abroad, the expense of transportation bears the largest proportion to the market value of those articles here; and the smallest, where the proportion is reversed. The products of the dairy are so easily and cheaply transported, that the dairymen of Vermont can supply the demand here for butter and cheese at prices which render it impolitic for our farmers to compete with them. The amount of butter annually made in the county, does not probably exceed 800,000 pounds. Of cheese, the amount annually produced is about 400,000 lbs.
Honey and Maple Sugar.-The amount of honey and bees-wax annually produced in the county, is estimated at 40,000 lbs.; and the amount of maple sugar at 30,000 lbs.
Flax is not cultivated except in a few instances. Probably ninetenths of the flax produced in this county the present season, was raised by one person, Thomas 1. Whiteside, of Champlain, who had 150 acres, which produced 200 lbs. of lint, and 9 bushels of seed to the acre. He estimates the value of his crop at......
$4,200 00 Cost of crop,..
Profit per acre, $11 is.
5. “The increase or diminution of acres under tillage for all purposes ?”
There is probably an increase of about 5 per cent. annually.
6. " The increase or diminution of animal stock ? and the im. provement of breeds ?”
The amount of stock kept in the county is decidedly on the increase. The rate of increase is estimated at 10 per cent. annually. In every department of stock, from horses and cattle down to geese and hens, a great deal of interest is taken in the improvement of breeds;
and a great deal is being done for the accomplishment of that object.
Cattle.- In the class of thorough breeds, we have the Short-horn, the Hereford, the Devon, and the Ayrshire--and as fine spe imens of each as are often found. The Short-horns are the most numerous and are by most preferred, while each of the other breeds has its advocates as strongly biased in its favor. Before the introduction of the above named breeds, the general stock of cattie in the county had been much improved by the introduction and admixture of other improved breeds, which have been superseded by the above. Of these the Long-horns and the Teeswater, were the principal. The Yorkshire was also introduced, but fortunately was not much disseminated. Number of cattle in the county, estimated as follows: Milch cows,
10,000 Working oxen, ..
2,000 Other cattle,
Horses.—The breeding of horses for the purpose of sale in the Boston and New-York markets, is becoming a business of some importance; and great attention is being paid to the improvement of this kind of stock, as may be inferred from the fact, that no less sum than $3,500 was this fall paid by one of our farmers for two or three equal shares in the ownership of a single Black Hawk colt, to be used in this county next season. There are also in almost every town in the county, one or more stock horses of this celebrated breed. But while this and the Morgan breeds are so highly prized, the advantages of a judicious cross between the Eng. lish turf horse and our large mares, are esteemed by many as promising results highly beneficial. Of this class of horses, we have several in the county; and the progeny of some of them are now coming into service, and giving promise of improvement fully equal to the expectations of breeders. A horse owned by Messrs. Lapham, of Peru, called the Leopard, originally the property of the Duke of Bedford, is probably the best animal of this breed in northern New-York, if not in the State. The number of horses of all ages in the county, is estimated at 10,000.
Sheep.--Less attention is given to the raising of sheep, than of cattle or horses. There are a few flocks of full blood Merinos, which would not in any respect suffer by comparison with the best flocks in Vermont; but the description of sheep most raised, is a cross between the Merino and the common or native sheep. For the purpose of mutton, here the leading object, this cross answers a very good purpose. We have also the Cottswold, the Leicester, and the South Down; and some experiments are being made to test the advantages of crosses between these and our common sheep, the results of which are not yet sufficiently developed to warrant an opinion of their respective merits. The number of sheep in the county is estimated at 40,000.
Swine.—At the high prices which have usually been paid in this county, for all kinds of coarse grain, our farmers have found it unprofitable to keep more hogs than are required to consume the slops from the kitchen and the dairy. The amount of pork made in the county, has therefore, always fallen greatly short of supplying the demand for home consumption. Number of swine in the county, 15,000.
7th. “The increased, diminished, or absence of scientific attention to cultivation ?! The benefits which science is capable of conferring upon agriculture, are generally conceded, and it may be safely stated that increased attention is given by many of our farmers, to the application of science in the cultivation of their farms. It must be confessed, however, that there is a great deal of room for improvement, as more than one-half the whole number of farmers in the county, have not yet become sufficiently convinced of the utility of science, to manifest their conviction by that best of practical tests, subscribing for an Agricultural paper. The number of farmers in Clinton county, is 2,200, the number of subscribers to agricultural publications is probably a little short of 1,000.
8th. “The increased, diminished, or stationary value of Farms ?" In the northern part of the county, the value of farms has in