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Form Notes from England

The agricultural correspondent of tho Auckland " HeraM " writes, under date London, July 25fch :—"A sad blow has been dealt to the reputation of St. Swithin, for whereas the common belief is that if we have fine weather on that .saint's burial day (July 15), we are likely to have it for forty days afterwards, a perfect deluge of rain fell at the end of last week, and during the present week, though fine weather has prevailed on most days, a small further downfall. From the Greenwich Observatory we learn that the rainfall since the beginning of June at that station lias been one-sixth of an inch more than it was m the corresponding period of the disastrous summer of 187?) —the " black season " of British agriculture. People who do not understand the process of grain development say that even now tine weather would give us a good harvest ; bub this is great nonsense. Fine weather now oannot put a single grain into an ear of corn, as all that can be formed this year i were formed long ago, and all that sunshine can do is to develop them. Of course it would make a great difference j if the grain were developed to the utmost ; but it is too late even for that, as the time when wheat should be cut m the early districts has already come. Besides, all the best of the crops were beaten down m the last week of June, and have been kept down since, so that only the top layers of ears could gut sun and air enough to fill decently with grain. There is a great cropof straw and if we should have fit and sunny weather from this time through harvest, Aye may have a passable yield ; but it must be small m proportion to straw, and I think it must be below average for wheat and barley, if not for oats also. Beans will produce abundantly, and peas fairly perhaps; but potatoes are getting more diseased every day, and even the flourishing root crops sadly need heat and sunshine to make the bulbs grow and ripen. As for the l*te hay crop, the late portion of it has been as badly injured as the early portion was, and scarcely a stack has been i put up without rain having fallen on its | contents. Fortunately, a great many farmers have made silage instead of hay, on the stack system, and the fodder so preserved may turn out well. During the last three weeks the price I of wheat has gone up 2s 6d to 3s a quarter of eight bushels, and the trade is still firm. i Prime English samples have sold at 40s, and a few at 425, on account of their 1 scarcity, New Zealand long berry being ! quoted up to 38s. If the weather should | be fine for the next few weeks probably prices will fall. Trade for fat stock and ! meat is slow, partly on account of the comparatively hot weather. Butter and cheese are both dull just now.

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Bibliographic details

Form Notes from England, Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2528, 26 September 1890

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Form Notes from England Ashburton Guardian, Volume VII, Issue 2528, 26 September 1890