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(Ecclesiastical j

SUrifuUuval i


SUrifuUuval At the close of the nutumu session of the Royal Agri- cultural College, the college diplomas were awarded amongst others, to Thomas Stephen Minton, Severn' Bank House, Shrewsbury; and Edmund Charles Wad low, Ackleton, Hridgnorth. The list of prizes and distributions included Ploughing Prize, Minton. Farm book, class 3 Certificate, Minton. Book-keeping, class 3: Prize, Minton. Practical Chemistry, class 3 (quantitative analysis) Prize, Minton. Botany, class 3 Certificate, Minton. Mathematics, class 3 (mechanics) Certificate, Minton. Veterinary Surgery, class 3 Prize, Minton. NATURAL FARMING- IN SUSSEX. During the recent journey through the Weald of Sussex, and an inspection of many clay farms, we were much struck with the farming of that district, representing, as it does, what perhaps may be called the "natural" prin- ciple of management with the least possible assistance from the various improvements which? capital has intro- duced into farm practice. The parish of Rsper, reached from either Crawley or Horsham station, may be taken as tke head-quarters of the "natural" process of farming, but there are scores of parishes and scores of thousands of acres of land where exactly the same system is pirated. The common rotation is First, fallow; second, wheat; third, oats fourth, seeds. This simple rotation of thrae crops and a bare fallow is sometimes modified by transposing the oats and seeds; in no case, however, is any quantity of roots ventured on they are considered to "poison the land." The only exception to bare tallow, with four or five ploughing", is a patch of tares for the horses, and, in favourable seasons like the present, a patch of trifolium incarnatum. On the best land, and when the manure can be spared, a few peas are sown in- stead of the seeds, but this is on a small scale. To grow an acre or two of mangel and white turnips on a hundred- acre farm is a bold adventure, only attempted on some few farms, and on spots that are supposed to be pecu- liarly favourable. A few scores of bushels of Swedes are usually bought for the horses. As to the other live stock, a couple of sows are kept, and their produce partly sold and partly made into pork and bacon for the men and boys who do the field work, a couple of cows for butter and for rearing calves, a few" yonng things" of the hardy Sussex, breed, and a score of Kentish sheep running in the leas and stubbles and over the little fields and their margins, and into the lanes, wide hedges, and copses dur- ing the winter, complete the head of live stock. A little cake is bought, for cake is cheaper than roots, and it is given to the yearlings, or to a cast cow that it has been decided to fatten. Wheat is the only produce sold, ex- cept butter of late years, and the little yard of yearlings with the spare pigs, and, in some cases, capons among other poultry. The apple orchard yields cider for the family. This is the primitive agriculture that prevails in many parts of the Wealden, with little variation. The clay farms seldom exceed 200 acres, and often fall below 100 acres, bearing rents that are not often more than 20s. an acre, and frequently do not exceed 7s. Gd., ranging very commonly from 10s. to 15s. That the system has not been profitable during the last few years there can be no doubt, for farms were scarce three years ago, and rents in many cases had risen, but at present there are many farms to let. That improvements have been attempted, and sometimes unsuccessfully, we have been assured; and, indeed, we know of several instances where covered home- steads have been abandoned by those who built them, and similar works of enterprise have been discontinued in consequence of loss and discouragement. We do not doubt that a large tract of bottomless clay land, on which oaks grow like willows, and attain a great size, might be obtained in the district we have indicated at 15s. an acre, if any capitalist farmer is willing to buy or hire it, and undertake its improvement.â A(/ricullural Gazette. POULTRY. Mddle. Millet Robinet thus describes cramming, the most effectual and economical method of fattening :â This requires the use of coops, in which each fowl has its own compartment. The coop is a long, narrow wooden box, set on short legs; the outer walls and partitions are close boarded, and the bottom is made with rounded â¢pars, loin, in diameter, runninglengthways of the coop; on those spars the fowls perch, their dung falling' through the bars. The top consists of a sliding door, nearly as wide as the compartment, by which the chickens are taken in and out. The partitions are 8 inches apart, so that the fowls cannot turn round. The length of each box may be regulated according to circumstances, care being taken that the attendant has room to pass along and sit down and furthermore that cocks, capons, and pullets, or the lean and the fat lots, be not mixed up indiscriminately." Fowls of different degrees of fattening should not inhabit the same box, because their rations will differ. The food for fatting fowls in France is chiefly buck-wheat meal, kneaded with sweet milk till of the consistency of bakers' dough. It is then cut up into rations about the size of two eggs, which are made up into rolls about the thicknsss of a woman's finger, but varying with the size of the fowls. These are further divided into pellet-s about 2i inches long. The food is thus administered. The attendant puts on an apron, and has pellets at hand, with a bowl of clean water. She takes a fowl from its cage, gently and care- fully, seats herself with the fowl on her knees, putting its rump under her left arm, by which she supports it; the left hand then. opens its mouth, and the right hand takes the pellet, soaks it well in the water, shakes it on its way to the open mouth, puts it straight down, and carefully crams it with the forefinger well into the gullet. When it is so far settled down that the fowl cannot eject it, she presses it down with the thumb and forefinger into the crop, taking care not to fracture the pellet. Other pellets follow the first, till the feeding is finished, in less time than one would imagine. The chicken ought to have two meals in 24 hours, and the fatting process ought to be com- pleted in two or three weeks.

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