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THE FARMER., Ashburton Guardian, Volume 1, Issue 56, 3 February 1880
AMONG THE FARMERS. (By Our Rambling Rerckter.) WaKANTI. —CONTINUED. Among the oldest homesteads in the neighborhood of the Creek, is the comfortable dwelling of Mr. Thomas Green way, who has not only, during his long residence in the district, added to its wealth by improving its lands, but has also improved the face of the country aqd contributed to the comfort of travellers as a road contractor. He has about 130 sown in wheat which will yield about 28 bushels ; 30 in oats, equal to 37 to 40 bushels ; and 25 acres of a nice even crop of barley, that will thrash out 30 bushels. A stack of hay has been saved of some 30 tons, and he has 40 acres in pasture, which is, like all grazing land here, first class. There are also some S acres in potatoes, carrots, and mangolds, and 90 acres broken up for next year. Mr. Win. Power, of the Royal Hotel, conbines dispensing liquor with the production of cereals, and he has about 110 acres in wheat, of 25 bushels per acre; and 61 of oats equal to about 32 bushels. Between Mr. Power’s and the railway line, is the large estate of Fairfield, better known as the “Company’s Block,” and of which Mr. James Scott is the manager. There are on this land 505 acres, in wheat, and though it is of very various growths, it will probably average about 22 bushels throughout. There are also about 800 acres in oats, averaging 35 bushels, and 450 in barley, equal to thrashing out 25 bushels. Harvest operations are in full swing here, there being quite an array of reapers and binders in various parts of the farm, and threshing has also commenced : so that there will not be much delay in having the Fairfield grain in the market. In .addition to the management of the Fairfield estate, Mr. Scott has the responsibility of supervision of the Chertsey estate, belonging to the same firm. Here, also, harvesting is employing a lot of machines, and the crop is a great improvement on last year, both in acreage and returns. The wheat tots up here to 525 acres, estiaated to yield 26 bushels; oats, 360 equal to 32 bushels ; and a splendid field of barley of 247 acres, fully equal to 40 bushels. There are also 370 acres in permanent pasture, with a magnificent sward on it, and about 350 in turnips. Nor do these two farms compose all the managerial duties devolving upon Mr. Scott, since we dropped on him on another 5000-acre block on the other side of Winslow. known as “Chatmoss,” on which he live’s when at home. But, as a rule, he is one of the most übiquitous individuals of of my acquaintance. He seems to be on some part of each of the properties every day. Chatmoss is not a light burden to manage if worked by itself, as the greater portion of it is a peat bog, which, four years ago, could be inspected only by webfooted or flying creatures. By an expensive but effective process of drainage by the owners of the land, assisted (where roads intersected the estate) by the local Road Board, the peat has become so far consolidated and drained that sheep and cattle are now enabled to take advantage of the luscious growth of grass, clover, rape, &c., so luxuriant on this kind of land when it has once had a portion of the water squeezed out of it. On the swampiest land, the seeds are surface sown, and of this description there is an area of 2800 odd acres, which had some LI6OO worth of seeds thrown broadcast over the peat, and the result has been astonishing. In a few years’ time, when the land is so far trodden down and solidified that ploughing operations can be commenced, it will be a grand field for small farmers, who would find 100 acres here equal to 400 on the plains. In addition to this large block there are 1800 acres of cultivated grass land, and 480 which has been cut for hay, yielding something over a ton to the acre. Cropping operations have not been gone into to any great extent this year on Chatmoss, these having been confined to 30 acres of barley, which promises 40 bushels pet acre ; and 380 of oats, of about the same yield. Returning to where we diverged at Fairfield, and travelling along the plains past Newlands, Messrs. C. and J. Pye have a fair average crop of wheat of 175 acres, promising a yield of 20 bushels or more ; and 80 of oats, which will give over 40. They have also some 50 acres laid down in English grass, and a kitchen garden which is well stocked with vegetables. Across the road are the holdings of Mr. George Aston and Mr. H. W. Graybum —the former having 100 acres of a good crop of wheat, equal to any in this part of the district; and 70 of oats, about 45 bushels to the acre ; and Mr. Grayburn has 47 of wheat, likely to turn out 20 bushels ; and 10 of oats, 30 bushels. Further north Mr. W. Allen has LOO acres in wheat (20 bushels) and 140 in oats (30 bushels per acre), a small patch in grass, and 50 acres broken up but not cropped. Hence to the Chertsey road the company’s Chertsey estate above referred to is on the left and Dundas farm, one of Messrs Saunders’ Bros, holdings on the ri<rht. On the latter, considerable permanent improvements have been made. There is a fine belt of young American pines well cared for, and looking like making a handsome and useful protection from winds in the future. The well is worked by means of a “ whim,” the only one we have as yet seen in the district”; and the buildings in connection with the farm are of a neat appearance, and have plenty of room between them in case of fire. Visitors here have the opportunity of seeing some specimens of poultry not to be equalled, or k at anyrate surpassed, in the colony. The P farm consists of about 1.850 acres, and l having been an early selection, contains I 7V the pick of the land in this portion of Wakanui. The crop consists of 1,300 acres of wheat, and the estimated yield is on the payable side of 20 bushels per acre. There are 500 acres in grass, and 50 in other crops here. On the opposite side of the Cbertsey road lies the handsome residence qf Mr. H. °f Rpberts an f!
Winter. There has been a deal of work done on this property during the past year, 600 acres being in wheat, of about the same average as in the neighboring farms ; 50 of oats, which was cut for feed; 100 in grass ; 000 in turnips, and other root crops ; and GOO acres broken up for next year. There is also a belt of gums planted all round the block, and a very promising garden lies in close contiguity to the residence. A large and well designed stable shows that the owner appreciates the comfort of the good horses he is so well known to keep. Adjoining Mr. Winter is Mr. Rule’s block of some 1400 acres. Mr. Rule has the most carefully tended plantation I have seen, the half-chain belt being cleared from weeds and made fit for an onion bed; and" I have no doubt that the incipient forest will duly appreciate the attention. His barley was being stacked on my arrival, and the threshing machinejbelonging to the proprietor was already in position to commence operations. Mr. Rule has 400 acres in wheat equal to the general average of his neighbors —20 bushels per acre ;°l3O of oats with double that yield ; and 130 of barley, equal to about 20 bushels. There are also 200 acres in grass, 210 broken up, and a few acres of root crops. Towards Chertsey there is another extensive holding, belonging to Messrs. Roskrnge Bros., who have a fine field of 600 acres of wheat, calculated at the standard rate of 20 bushels per acre, but which will, I think, agreeably disappoint the owners by yielding a bushel or two more when they put the sheaves through the combine. There are 210 acres of oats, (about 30 bushels), and 100 of barley, which will give 20 bushels ; besides 50 acres of pasture, 7 of roots, and 270 broken up for next year. The farm of Mr. George King of Christchurch is next on our route, which has 640 acres of wheat, giving a promise of about 30 bushels, GO of oats, giving about 50 bushels, 500 of turnips, and 40 of oats cut for fodder. The improvements on this farm, aro of first class quality, the mainstay of plenty of stabling accommodation having been kept in view by the late proprietor, Mr. James Caldwell. Our last visit on this trip was to Mr. William Aitken’s farm, near the township of Chertsey. Mr. Aitken was one of the earliest settlers on the plains, and has already succeeded in making his fine farm look like a homely country residence, with its comfortable two-storey house, and extensive stabling accommodation. His well is the deepest in the district, having a sheer descent of 230 feet ; hut it has 60 feet of water in it at present, and having been sunk to its extreme depth in the driest weather, Mr. Aitken does not anticipate its ever going dry. By means of a simple whip, and a 30-gallon tub, enough water can be drawn by one horse in half-an-hour or so to supply all the wants of the farm for a week. There are 540 acres of wheat, estimated to yield 35 bushels per acre, on this holding ; 60 acres of a grand field of oats up to 50 bushels, and 40 of the same grain cut for chaff; and 500 in turnips, &c.; besides 900 acres broken up for next year’s crop. Harvesting is in full swing here, and Mr. Aitken’s near neighborhood to the Chertsey railway station will make the carting of his large crop an easy matter. HARVEST DRINK. During hot weather and 'while engaged in harvest operations, a good deal of liquid is necessarily imbibed ; for the pores are open, and the perspiration flows out., The question is, what is best to drink 1 It has been found by actual and repeated experiments that a much better drink can he used than cold tea, or milk and water, or that vile compound colonial ale. It is a mixture of oatmeal and water, which has been pronounced by those wdxo have tried it as Al. Dr. Wilson says:—“On hoard steamers the firemen employed about the furnaces are sometimes greatly exhausted by heat. Their profuse perspiration renders an immense quantity of water necessary to supply the waste. The ingestion of clear water under these circumstances appears to answer very imperfectly the wants of the system. It seems to pass through the circulation to the skin, percolate as through a sieve, and flow over the surface of the body in streams. A large drink of cold or even cool water, under these circumstances, on an empty stomach is very dangerous, and liable to produce death with almost the suddenness of an electric shock. Great practical advantage has been obtained by mixing farinaceous substances, particularly oatmeal, with the water to he used by the men employed at this kind of labor. The oatmeal is mixed in proportion of three or four ounces to the gallon of water, and used according to inclination by the firemen and coalheavers. It might be difficult to determine why oatmeal, for this purpose, should be better than corn meal, or buckwheat, or rye, wheat, millett, Ac., but the firemen themselves seem to think it has the effect of making them as strong as horses. We may safely allow something for this sort of prejudice, which we know to he very potent among the influences on health and disease. The peculiar aroma of the oats is probably associated with a pleasant degree of stimulation of the alimentary mucous surfaces in such a way as to promote its complete digestion. It seems to fill the blood vessels without increasing the amount of cutaneous exhalations. The n.en occasionally try acid, saccharine, and alcoholic drinks as substitutes for the oats, but always with unsatisfactory results, except that they find molasses and water better than clear water, and they who are disposed to insist on the excellence of rum and whisky, under all circumstances, petition for these, and experience after each ingestion a momentary relief, followed by additional profuseness of perspiration and additional exhaustion. INSECT STINGS. The pain caused by the sting of a plant or insect is the result of a certain amount cf acid poison injected into the blood. The first thing to be done is to press the tube of a small key from side to side, to facilitate the expulsion of the sting and its accompanying poison. The sting, if left in the wound, should be carefully extracted ; otherwise it will greatly increase the local irritation. The poison of the stings being acid, common sense points to the alkalies as the proper means of cure. Among the most easily piocured remedies may be mentioned soft soap, liquor of ammonia, spirits of hartshorn, smelling salts, washing soda, quicklime made into paste with water, the juice of an onion, tobacco juice, chewed tobacco, bruised dock leaves, tomato juice, wood ashes, and carbonate of soda. If the sting he severe, rest and coolness should be added to the other remedies, more especially in the case of nervous subjects. Nothing is so apt to make the poison active as heat, and nothing favors its activity less than cold. Let the body be kept cool and at rest, and the activity of the poison will he reduced to a mini* mum. Any active exertion whereby the circulation is quickened will increase both pain and swelling. If the swelling he severe, the part may be rubbed with sweet oil or a drop or two of laudanum. Stings in the eye, ear, mouth or throat sometimes lead to serious consequences ; in such cases medical advice should alwaj s be sought as soon as possible.
THE FARMER., Ashburton Guardian, Volume 1, Issue 56, 3 February 1880
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