Letters From An American Farmer By Hector St. John De Crevecoeur


This, said he, is altogether the fruit of my own contrivance; I
purchased some years ago the privilege of a - Page 240
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"This," Said He, "Is Altogether The Fruit Of My Own Contrivance; I Purchased Some Years Ago The Privilege Of A

Small spring, about a mile and a half from hence, which at a considerable expense I have brought to this

Reservoir; therein I throw old lime, ashes, horse- dung, etc., and twice a week I let it run, thus impregnated; I regularly spread on this ground in the fall, old hay, straw, and whatever damaged fodder I have about my barn. By these simple means I mow, one year with another, fifty-three hundreds of excellent hay per acre, from a soil, which scarcely produced five-fingers [a small plant resembling strawberries] some years before." This is, Sir, a miracle in husbandry; happy the country which is cultivated by a society of men, whose application and taste lead them to prosecute and accomplish useful works. "I am not the only person who do these things," he said, "wherever water can be had it is always turned to that important use; wherever a farmer can water his meadows, the greatest crops of the best hay and excellent after-grass, are the sure rewards of his labours. With the banks of my meadow ditches, I have greatly enriched my upland fields, those which I intend to rest for a few years, I constantly sow with red clover, which is the greatest meliorator of our lands. For three years after, they yield abundant pasture; when I want to break up my clover fields, I give them a good coat of mud, which hath been exposed to the severities of three or four of our winters.

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