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Soil Culture   By:

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SOIL CULTURE;

CONTAINING

A COMPREHENSIVE VIEW

OF

AGRICULTURE, HORTICULTURE, POMOLOGY, DOMESTIC ANIMALS, RURAL ECONOMY, AND AGRICULTURAL LITERATURE.

BY

J. H. WALDEN, A. M.

ILLUSTRATED BY NUMEROUS ENGRAVINGS

NEW YORK: PUBLISHED BY ROBERT SEARS, 181 WILLIAM STREET. 1858.

Entered, according to Act of Congress, in the year 1857, BY J. H. WALDEN, in the Clerk's Office of the District Court of the United States, in and for the Northern District of Illinois.

SAVAGE & McCREA, STEREOTYPERS, C. A. ALVORD, PRINTER, 13 Chambers Street, N.Y. No. 15 Vandewater Street, N.Y.

TO

THE PRACTICAL CULTIVATORS OF THE SOIL,

The True Lords of the Manor,

THIS VOLUME IS DEDICATED,

BY THEIR SINCERE FRIEND,

THE AUTHOR.

PREFATORY NOTE TO THE READER.

If "he who causes two blades of grass to grow where but one grew before, is a benefactor of his race," he is not less so who imparts to millions a knowledge of the methods by which it is done.

The last half century has been the era of experiments and writing on the cultivation of the soil. The result has been the acquisition of more knowledge on the subjects embraced, than the world had attained in all its previous history. That knowledge is scattered through many volumes of numerous periodicals and books, and interspersed with many theories, and much speculation, that can never be valuable in practice. In the form in which it is presented, it confuses, rather than aids, the great mass of cultivators. Hence the prejudice against " book farming ." Provided established facts only are presented, they are none the worse for being printed.

The object of this volume is to condense, and present in an intelligible form, all important established facts in the science of soil culture. The author claims originality, as to the discovery of facts and principles, in but few cases. During ten years of preparatory study for this work, he has sought the rewards of industry, in sifting out the certain and the useful from the hypothetical and the fanciful, and the results of judicious discrimination between fallacy and just reasoning, in support of theories. This volume is designed to be a complete manual for all but amateur cultivators. While it is believed that he who follows its directions will be certain of success, it is not intended to disparage the merits of other works, but to encourage and extend their perusal. We can not too strongly recommend to young culturists to keep themselves well posted in this kind of literature, and give to every discovery and invention in this science a fair trial; not on a large scale, so as to sink money in fruitless experiments, but sufficient to afford a sure test of their real value. To no class of men is study more important than to soil culturists.

It is believed that the directions here given, if followed, will save millions of dollars annually to that class of cultivators who can least afford to waste time and money in experimenting. With beginners it is important to be successful at first; which is impossible without availing themselves of the experience of others. While we thus aim to give our volume this exclusively practical form, and utilitarian character, we do not undervalue the labors of amateur cultivators. A meed of praise is due to those who are willing to spend time and money in experiments, by which great truths are evolved for the benefit of mankind.

Perfection is not claimed for this volume. But the author hopes nothing will be found here that is untrue. A fear of inserting errors may have induced us to omit some things that may yet prove valuable. If anything seems to be at variance with a cultivator's observation, in a given locality, he will discover in our general principles on climate, soil, and location, that it is a natural result... Continue reading book >>




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