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Tho Invitation from the County Oounoll to laapeot the ocops now growing pu tho irrigation farm vr« largely availed of yeaterday, qaite a number of farmers and others being present during the afternoon. Arrungeinenin had been made for a tnpl of the Masaoy Mower on the farm and this maohlao was at work, cutting for hay, tho crop of Irrigated oow-graaH and red clover grown this season. Tbu County Oouuoll was represented by Mes3re 0. J. Harper, Hugo Fciedlander» »nd ■T,., ...,., Tt>«w Dj lln.JVlu.ln waring iho cjerk. Being also praoont, with Me Olartdge the farm manager and caretaker. There was quite a representative gathering of farmer! and landowners, amongst whom wenotioud the Hon W. JEtolieatou, Messrs T. E. Upton, Leatham, Leadley, WilliamMm, Juo. Gilmonr, Jno. Ooohrane, P. Oopeland, James Moore, and a number of other well-known settlers, who showud by thole presence that a large amount of interest i« taken m the work of tho Ooanoll on the irrigation farm. Anyone at all conversant wiih fanning matters Is of ooursu aware that this aoaaon so far has been of a very moist, and 000 l nature, aud i therefore the value of irrigation la raisiug orops, hao not been bo palpably manl footed, here. Nevertheless the crop which was out gave very dintlnofc and uefinito proof of the wocderful effeot of the water ou cow-grasa and rod oluvera, the piece of ground cropped with .this fodder being denaely covered with heavy plants, healthy and of a bright and deep color, while the adjoining patch, sown at the same time and on exaotly the same quality of ground (but which had not the advantage of irrigation) does not m come places evenioover the groaud and is full of Borrel, cape weed, and other vile herbs, unfit for feediDg any £oiaos of stock, and the orop altogether 1b hardly worth the trouble of cutting for hay. The Massey mower was kept at work during the afternoon, the machine being driven by Mr MoLenn, the resident expert for the Maeaey Company, Mr li. FrledUnder buing m attendanoe for Messrs Friedlander Bros., the agents for Maaaey machinery m New Zealand, The Mower worked very satisfactorily, being very easily drawn by two medium horses, and catting very oloaoly and evenly, although the ground was not At all omooth' or regular, the furrows and channel** (or Irrigation being deeper thi^n, ordinary. Y«t as al! the aqoveaienta of the machine controlled from the driver's seat, it ia < j a«y for anyone to keep the maohine at work, without etopplng tho hoises or leaving ins place, m fact In a level paddorik with a nice even orop the driver might read a book, or other-wise divert himfldlf ■nd itill make good work for the '* boBB," with- a Massey Mower m the hay field.

The Council have put m a portion of the farm with barley this season, but the orop does not seam a suitable one for the eiasa of land tho farm consists of — poor thinßoil very near the shingle — aud the result of this crop is not likely to induce a repetition of the experiment. In f aot the opinion of some farmers yesterday was that probabiy the crops would nave done better without artificial watering thio season on the B*me land, bat m any case the soil was not of a suitable catuie for this cereal, it requiring more eubatanoo and, depth of Boil; as shown at Mr Leatbain's farm on the road down, where there is a paddook of this grain m earjwhich should please any farmer's eyes, and which will yield, probably i^t least 40 bnshels per ft ore to the owner. There are a number of small patches of other crops being experimented with qn the farm. «c pptatooe, rnajze, lucerne, peas, etc,, but it is too early m the teason perhaps to eßtimfite their probable yieidß However, we think the resultß with the oow-graas alone are umply euDßcient to show that the County Council have not j spent their funds m vain on this experimental farm, but rathor the opposite and with the proßent aspect of the markets for dairy produce and moat, it is probable that grain growing will m many oases aoqn haye to play a subordinate part IP Canterbury laud give the pride of plaoo m value to theso other lines of export iv the not distant future.

Lunch was provided by Messrs Friedlandor Bros for those present, $nd Mr Qlarjdge wa« kept busy explaining to the visitors the manner ot propping and tho way m which tho water %&b put on the land. At any time, he will be glad to ebow anyone visiting the farm, round the oropa, ana explain tjw worfc don*

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Bibliographic details

IRRIGATION FARM., Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2017, 19 December 1888

Word Count

IRRIGATION FARM. Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2017, 19 December 1888