« ZurückWeiter »
This yellow leaf tobacco, is cultivated in Fairfield, Hocking, Perry, Licking, Guernsey, Belmont, Starke, Muskingum, and many other counties in our hilly region. In the Miami valley the cultivation of the palma christi has been attended with great success, and the manufacture of castor oil from it, cold pressed. It has been found quite profitable to those who made it. The annual value of this oil, thus made, we do not know, but we do know, that it is considerable.
The cultivation of the sweet potatoe, along the Ohio river, and all its tributaries, as high as latitude 40° north, has succeeded extremely well. They are a very profitable crop. Its value sometimes is worth three hundred dollars, on an acre.
In Lawrence county, cotton has always been raised, for family use. We raise the green seed, mostly, such as grows in Kentucky, below latitude 37° north. This plant is more cultivated on the Wabash as high as Vincennes, but, in so high a latitude it is not a certain crop, and it has to be topped in August to check its further growth. The largest field which we ever saw, along the Wabash, contained only twenty acres.
Hemp is cultivated in places, and produces very well, but our people, as well as many others, do not like to handle it. Our Irish people prefer to it, the potatoe, just as our yankees do the pumpkin.
Flax seems to be going out of use, and our people cultivate less of it every year. They prefer cotton to flax, and they prefer too, the cotton cloths of Rhode Island and Massachusetts to their own manufactured cloths. Thespinning wheel, the reel, and the loom are not much used in Ohio, especially the two former. Our people prefer buying their cloths from the east, to making them here, and they are right. The production of the articles of food—meat and bread, for the hungry laborers of the east, best suits our present condition.
NATURALIZED TREES, ETC.
Besides our native trees, shrubs, plants, flowers, vegetables, and grasses, we have imported nearly all those, which are cultivated, in the eastern states. When introduced, from places lying in our parrallels of latitude, they even improve by the change, of soil and longitude. .
The apple, pear, cherry, peach, quince, &c. do well here, and produce new varieties, sometimes, which it would be well to give back, to our eastern friends, as a restored loan, and as the interest on the principal which we have borrowed from them. Our western fruits, are delicious, and they are emigrating, like their owners, to the far west, where we hope their fortunes will be made better, by their removal. The peach, pear and plum tree, are often destroyed, in old grounds, by a white worm existing in vast numbers about its roots. A thorough washing of the tree, with hot water, and by digging away the earth from the roots, early in the spring, and as often as necessary, pouring on the ground and on the very roots of the tree, boiling hot water, will certainly kill the worms and preserve the trees. In Tennessee the same worm, we believe, destroys the apple tree.
The peach, originally brought from Persia, perhaps, flourishes most, in a southern climate. - It does better in west Tennessee, and in Alabama, than in Ohio. The tree grows larger, lasts longer, and the fruit is larger and better, there also; whereas our apple tree, and its fruit do best here. We can exchange with those neighbors, by means of our steamers. We can carry them, our apples, and bring back their dried peaches and their cottons.
The potatoe, (which we believe, was found in latitude 400 south, in South America, which in temperature, is equal to 450 north latitude,) does not always succeed here as well as it does farther north, either in quantity or quality. Our summers are too long for its growth. It is quite disposed to grow awhile, stop, start again and grow, and start again, producing a rotten inside; an unpleasant and unhealthy plant. This depends on
Yorks of unsurpasseed corn
the season; some years it does better, but, on the whole, our Irish potatoe is unequal to those raised in a colder region, in Western New York, or Canada.
Our Indian corn is unsurpassed, by all the other corn in the world. We raise the gourd-seed corn, with twenty four, or or even with thirty rows on the cob. One bushel and a half of ears, produce one bushel of shelled corn. It excels all other corn, in sweetness, and produces two quarts more Whiskey to the bushel, than the New York corn. This plant grows only in the richest land, and requires so long a summer, as rarely to come to perfection, above 41° 30' north latitudo. This corn was originally cultivated in this region, by the Indians, from whom we derived it. It grows on the most fertile lands, from lake Erie, to the Mexican gulph. It grows, along the Mississippi, from Rock Island, downwards, and indeed, in the whole valley of the Mississippi, below 41° 30' north. It produces, sometimes in favorable seasons, ninety bushels of corn to the acre, in the Miami and Scioto vallies; but fifty bushels are perhaps a common crop. The ground is plowed, but the corn is never hoed. Four boys, and four good horses, can cultivate one hundred acres of this corn, after it is planted. If hoed, as in the east, this grain would be better in quality, and the product would be one third greater, for the botter culture.
WHEAT succeeds well within one half of our territorial limits. Our country produces from twenty to forty bushels to the acre, on all good lands well cultivated. It is now, April 1837, worth one dollar a bushel, it sells even higher. Let us calculate, a farmer's profits, in the Scioto and Miami valleys; if he raises corn, or wheat, it does not cost him, more than ten dollars an acre to cultivate, get out and carry his crop to a market. If a crop of corn, at fifty bushels to the acre, at fifty cents a bushel, is twenty-five dollars; deduct ten dollars, leaves fifteen dollars an acre, clear profit. Suppose, that he raises three hundred acres of corn annually, which amounts to four thousand five hundred dollars. If he raises wheat, say ono hundred acres, at forty dollars an acre, deducting ten dollars for expenses, leaves thirty dollars an acre, three thousand dol
lars more, in all seven thousand five hundred dollars a year, besides all his pork, beef &c. say, two thousand five hundred dollars besides supporting his family. So that, a farmer, who owns a thousand acres of land in the Scioto or Miami valleys, can lay up, they generally each lay up, or rather lay out, nearly or quite ten thousand dollars a year, in buying congress lands, in Illinois, for their children. These are our wealthiest farmers who own large farms.
If any farmers are prospering more than ours, then we know not where to look for them. Farms which produce such a profit, could be purchased for forty dollars, an acre. It is easy to see, that they are now worth, twice the sum for which they might be bought.
GRASSES, NATIVE AND NATURALIZED.
When first settled, Ohio was a great grass country, especially, along our rivers and in our prairies and barrens. Even in the woods, in many parts of our country, grasses grew every where. In prairies, there were grasses, intermingled with flowers, in endless numbers. There was a clover, called “ buffaloe clover," but, our native grasses have disappeared, mostly, and the naturalized, red top, blue grass, herds grass, red clover and white clover, have conquered and expelled the natives from our soil. Illinois, Wisconsin, Michigan, Missouri, and the farthest-west, are still covered with wild grasses; but the tame grasses will one day banish them along with the Indians, over the Rocky mountains. The decree has gone forth, and it is in the course of a speedy execution ;- “That all the west shall be covered by well cultivated farms,” all this country was intended for cultivation, and all those rivers of the far west will be navigated by the steamer, and the largest cities in the world, will one day, be in the west, aud exert a vast influence on the destiny of this nation. This decree is registered and recorded.
BIRDS, RESIDENT AND MIGRATING.
These are nearly the same as those of Pennsylvania and Maryland, in corresponding parallels of latitude.
OUR CONSTANT RESIDENTS,
Are the turkey; turkey buzzard; hawk, three species ; pheasant; partridge, or quail; blue jay; wood duck, seven species; sparrow; redbird; wood-pecker, five species. Among these are the wood-cock and yellow-hammer. The eagle, large baldheaded; small eagle and grey eagle, raven and crow. King-fisher; sap-sucker; wren; snow-bird; owls, two species; prairie hen or grouse, and turtle dove.
The blue-bird is seen in the southern parts of the state, every pleasant, warm day in the winter.
The wild goose visits us on the Scioto, early in the autumn, and tarries with us until spring, living on the corn in the fields, and feeding on the green, newly sown wheat. Many of them are domesticated, though they have the air of a wild fowl, and sometimes join the wild ones, unless restrained by cropping their wings. This bird lives all winter about Sandusky bay, and from thence southwardly to Pickaway plains. Several species of duck appear among us in the spring, as they are passing northwardly, on their annual journey to the far-north, The wild pigeon comes in the spring, sometimes in March, or even earlier, on his journey north, and after paying us a visit, of about a month, passes on his journey. In September he returns to see us again, spending six weeks with us, feasting on the pigeon berry, phytolacca decandra, the new acorns, and other nuts, and such food as the country produces for his use.
Formerly the pigeons tarried here all summer, building