•Such oi the wheat crop as had not been carried by the end of b ebruary, was overtaken in the beginning of this month with a succession of close, calm, warm weather, with a continuance of thick, small rain, intermixed with occasional heavy showers, as proved very detrimental ; blackening the straw so deeply and so quickly as our experience in the home country had not prepared us for ; injuring the sample which before the rain was of a beautiful yellow color ; and causing the grain to spring in the stocks. The wheat crop, however, is now all saved; and great portion of that which was sprung has been thrashed, and the injury from that source has proved to be of only a trifling extent. One sample we have heard of weighed 62 lbs. the bushel, and that from the stook, and cleaned only in the imperfect and primitive mode of sifting it in the open air for want of fanners. The injury from the weather, together with the ravages of the caterpillar [about 8 acres of wheat at Grant's Braes, sown in July, was completely destroyed by them in the course of September last ; what was sown in June proved too far advanced for them to injure},_as well as the ungenial character of last spring, has conduced to produce a very .general impression in favor of early sowing — as early as April. Owing to the same influence of copious rains after a dry summer, the potato crop, particularly that portion of it planted so early as September and October, has taken a second growth : the Maories and others have in consequence been taking up their potatoes before they are ripe. Such potatoes, of course, cannot be expected to keep. Ail this seems to be an argument for planting not earlier than November. The wet but mild character of the month has proved beneficial to growing crops, especially potatoes. Although, on the other hand, unfavorable to dressing and cleaning the gardens, the ripening of fruits and drying of seeds. The time of seeds and fruits ripening is well calculated to convey an idea of the temperature of our climate. Some localities may be earlier, others later, according to the length of time enjoyed of the sun. At the Forbury, for instance, the hills deprive the garden of about a sixth part of the evening sun. Good and well-flavored crops of melons have been got, with no more artificial heat than a glass frame. Peaches and apples do not ripen before the end of the month. The last week of the month the weather has has become fine, which has enabled gardeners and others to get stored, in excellent condition, a splendid crop of onions, celery, beet root, carrot and onion seed. The planting and sowing of vegetables has been finished for a season.
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Observations.—, Otago Witness, Issue 6, 19 April 1851
Observations.— Otago Witness, Issue 6, 19 April 1851
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