ELECTRO-CULTURE SO FAR FAILS TO SPARK
IT is to France that the country owes tlie opportunity of being able to participate m the promised boons of this wonderful invention. One Monsieur Justin Christofleau claims the responsibility for its discovery and another of his countrymen, M. Aleo Trouchet, conferred the favor on New Zealand by introducing it here. In his book that covers the subject, M. Christofleau is cited as a member of the Society of Scientists and Inventors of France. The last French scientists who were m this
country had never heard of this august body when questioned about it by a New Zealand scientist. What Monsieur A close-up view Christofleau claims of the apparatus to have done is to that allegedly have discovered, by collects the— the ot hi 3 electro-culture apparatus, a means of leg-roping, the electricity that is whizzing about m the atmosphere. ' This is supposed to produce all the magic effects that fired the imagination of H. G. Wells when he wrote his book on the boom food of the gods. With electro-culture 'beans grow nine feet high, tomatoes emulate pumpkin's m size, cabbages become so big that a man staggers under their weight, the grass grows like a raupo swamp and carrots and beetroot require the services of a surveyor to measure them. And this Is not all. The beneficent influence is extended even to the animals. Horses fed on electro-culture fodder get that Kruschen feeling and gallop like the wind. Has Trainer Jones heard about this? He may possibly try it on Limerick and gladden the hearts of the punters with an astounding come-back next year. Hens lay so fast that an international half-back would have his work cut out catching them as they fly out of the nest. "Truth" would not particularly care to encounter a honey bee that has been supping on this magic fodder, the presumption being that he would have a sting the size of. a "staff officer's sword and a pair of wings like a monoplane. Another astounding factor about electro -culture is that it is almost humanly discerning. While it may give new life to the old legs of racehorses, turn fowls into automatic egg providers and make the gambolling lambs emulate Olympic high jumpers; it shows the cold shoulder to the pests of insect life that batten on plants.
(From "N.Z. Truth's" Special Commissioner). If, m peregrinating around the Dominion you should come across some peculiar looking poles with a fan-like arrangement of wires at the top, do not be deceived; they are not the totem poles of some sun-worshipping scot, nor are they an adjunct bf a wireless station. They are, m fact, the outward and visible signs of a great science— so called— named Electro Culture. Ostensibly, they are intended to extract electricity from the air m order to make the grass grow; actually they have only succeeded m extracting a slip or two from the farmer's bank-roll.
Vines, _pr Instance, that have wilted under the attacks of phyloxera, become veritable cornucopias and their fruit is endowed with a degree of sweetness and alcohol content that is denied their unfortunate rivals which have not been treated with electro-culture. It is well over two years ago since M. Trouchet descended upon this country with the apparatus and spread tho glad tidings. Farmers and others whose crops were not so abundant as they would Hke fell for his claims and m certain parts of New Zealand the poles reared
themselves skywards on dozens of allotments. The cost was about seven guineas per outfit without the poles and labor. No batteries, electric currents or other gadgets were necessary; all that was required was that the pole should be erected with the apparatus carefully pointed to the south, for it is m this position that M. Christofleau assures the world that the plant is m a position to capture all the "Terrestrial Magnetism and Tellurio Currents" that surround It.
Any missed m this direction could not get far before being caught and conveyed to the roses and radishes by means of some more wires that were pointed skyward. The apparatus didn't overlook a single thing. It snatched the electricity that the Sun thought was exclusively its own personal property, niched currents from the wind, nipped a volt or two from Jack Frost and cut off a couple of amperes of juice from whatever the rain had to offer. And all this conglomeration of magic
I to provide a fattening diet for the succulent carrot, the juicy tomato and a hundred and one other things with, most commendable of all, an effect on the agricultural bank account that would cause them to rival the cabbages m their phenomenal growth. Is it any wonder that the farmers were not slow to avail themselves of this touchstone of prosperity? More especially when they were informed that the Cawthron Institute of Research and; Science at Nelson had a plant installed and that a guarantee of results or money back accompanied each apparatus.
With regard to the Cawthron Institute, "N.Z. Truth" is m a position to state that the pole's were installed at the request of ' the agents for experimental purposes and nothing more. The plant has been installed for over two years and has been tried on four different kinds of crops. For all the notice tho crops took of electroculture it need not have been there at all. "With the innate conservatism that is characteristic of such things, they refused absolutely to spring feet m the air, or bulge out-
wards like a blister on a battleship. They merely continued the even tenor of their growth as well conducted crops should, and eventually found . . . i their respective ways ~ at I m . os f " c •LJ c ! to pots and ovens all electricity. The unaware of the awe- _P e ._ a * <" r e c t'on inspiring ex per i - finder with the ments that had been vr >P r <> v ed "P"carried out on them tation. and certainly showing no signs of them. Electro-culture failed to impress the scientists of Cawthron. Another individual of standing to give the culture a test was Mr. C. E. Pope, the president of the Tomato and Soft Fruit Produce Association of New Zealand. Mr. Pope officially stated to "Truth": "Though the poles have been m for over two years, there have been absolutely no results." In the meantime, where is M. Alec Trouchet? "Truth" is informed that he is on a farm -somewhere outside of Fremantle (Western Australia), but whether he is still pushing along the electro-culture is not known. So far as his New Zealand agents are concerned, they acted m good faith. They are a reputable firm and since the results of the culture have not been what was claimed for them they have withdrawn the apparatus from the market. In the meantime, however, the question arises: Who is to refund the money that may be claimed as a refund by dissatisfied users'? "Truth" is satisfied that of these there are not a few. M. Trouchet authorised his Now Zealand agents to make a guarantee on his behalf but he, inadvertently no doubt, failed to leave a deposit to cover it. His agents apparently overlooked this important fact and took him at his fa.c value as a man of substance. Hr still may produce the goods, but the negotiations are becoming a trifle protracted and a little uneasiness is 'manifest on the market garden trenches.
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NZ Truth, NZ Truth, Issue 1247, 24 October 1929
ELECTRO-CULTURE SO FAR FAILS TO SPARK NZ Truth, Issue 1247, 24 October 1929
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