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The Prairie Farmer, Vol. 56, No. 2, January 12, 1884 A Weekly Journal for the Farm, Orchard and Fireside   By:

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First Page:

PRAIRIE FARMER

A Weekly Journal for

THE FARM, ORCHARD, AND FIRESIDE.

ESTABLISHED IN 1841. ENTIRE SERIES: VOL. 56 NO. 2.

CHICAGO, SATURDAY, JANUARY 12, 1884.

PRICE, $2.00 PER YEAR, IN ADVANCE.

[Transcriber's Note: The Table of Contents was originally located on page 24 of the periodical. It has been moved here for ease of use.]

THE CONTENTS OF THIS NUMBER.

AGRICULTURE Dew and Soil Moisture, Page 17; Specialty in Farming, 17; Public Squares in Small Cities, 17 18; Farm Names, 18; Diogenes In His Tub, 18; Field and Furrow, 18 19; Agricultural Organizations, 19; Didn't No. 38 Die Hard, 19; A Grange Temple, 19.

LIVE STOCK Items, Page 20; Swine Statistics, 20; Iowa Stock Breeders, 20; The Horse and His Treatment, 20; Items, 20 21.

THE DAIRY Winter Feed for Cows, Page 21; Churning Temperature, 21; Seas of Milk, 21.

VETERINARY About Soundness, Page 21; Questions Answered, 21.

HORTICULTURE The Hedge Question, Page 22; Young Men Wanted, 22; Possibilities of Iowa Cherry Growing, 22 23; Prunings, 23.

FLORICULTURE Gleanings by an Old Florist, Page 23.

EDITORIAL Items, Page 24; Illinois State Board, 24 25; Sorghum at Washington, 25; The Cold Spell, 25; American Ash, 25; Wayside Notes, 25; Letter from Champaign, 25.

POULTRY NOTES A Duck Farm, Page 26.

THE APIARY Apiary Appliances, Page 26; What Should be Worked For, 26.

SCIENTIFIC The Star of Bethlehem, Page 27.

HOUSEHOLD How the Robin Came, Poem, Page 28; After Twenty Years, 28; Will Readers Try It, 28; The Secret of Longevity, 28; How the Inventor Plagues His Wife, 28; Recipes, 28; Pamphlets, etc., Received, 28.

YOUNG FOLKS The City Cat, Poem, Page 29; Amusing Tricks, 29; Bright Sayings, 29; Compiled Correspondence, 29.

LITERATURE The Wrong Pew, Poem, Page 30; Yik Kee, 30 31.

HUMOROUS "A Leedle Mistakes," Page 31; Sharper Than a Razor, 31; A Coming Dividend, 31.

NEWS OF THE WEEK Page 31.

MARKETS Page 32.

DEW AND SOIL MOISTURE.

Bulletin No. 6 of Missouri Agricultural College Farm is devoted to an account of experiments intended to demonstrate the relation of dew to soil moisture. Prof. Sanborn has prosecuted his work with that patience and faithfulness characteristic of him, and the result is of a most interesting and useful nature.

The Professor begins by saying that many works on physics, directly or by implication, assert that the soil, by a well known physical law, gains moisture from the air by night. One author says "Cultivated soils, on the contrary (being loose and porous), very freely radiate by night the heat which they absorb by day; in consequence of which they are much cooled down and plentifully condense the vapor of air into dew." Not all scientific works, however, make this incautious application of the fact that dew results from the condensation of moisture of the air in contact with cooler bodies. Farmers have quite universally accepted the view quoted, and believe that soils gain moisture by night from the air. This gain is considered of very great importance in periods of droughts, and is used in arguments favoring certain methods of tillage.

Professor Stockbridge, in 1879, at the Massachusetts Agricultural College, carried on very valuable and full experiments in test of this general belief, and arrived at results contradictory of this belief. He found, in a multitude of tests, that in every instance, save one, for the months from May to November, that the surface soil from one to five inches deep, was warmer than the air instead of cooler, as the law requires for condensation of moisture from the air. That exception was in the center of a dense forest, under peculiar atmospheric conditions. After noting these facts, ingenious methods were employed to test more directly the proposition that soil gains moisture from the air by night, with the result that he announced that soils lose moisture by night. Professor Stockbridge's efforts met with some criticism, and his conclusions did not receive the wide acceptance that his view of the question justifies... Continue reading book >>




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