• TABLE OF CONTENTS
HIDE
 Title Page
 Main














Group Title: Bulletin University of Florida. Agricultural Experiment Station
Title: Experiments in corn and Irish potatoes and analysis of grasses, etc
CITATION DOWNLOADS THUMBNAILS PAGE IMAGE ZOOMABLE
Full Citation
STANDARD VIEW MARC VIEW
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00026882/00001
 Material Information
Title: Experiments in corn and Irish potatoes and analysis of grasses, etc
Series Title: Bulletin no. 11 ; University of Florida Experiment Station
Physical Description: 17, 1 p. : ; 22 cm.
Language: English
Publisher: Experiment Station of Florida at the State Agricultural College
Place of Publication: Lake City, Fla.
Publication Date: 1890
Copyright Date: 1890
 Subjects
Subject: Corn -- Field experiments   ( lcsh )
Potatoes -- Field experiments   ( lcsh )
Grasses -- Composition   ( lcsh )
Genre: government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
 Notes
General Note: Cover title.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00026882
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: University of Florida
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.
Resource Identifier: ltuf - AEN0329
oclc - 18545263
alephbibnum - 000919937

Downloads
Table of Contents
    Title Page
        Page 1
        Page 2
    Main
        Page 3
        Page 4
        Page 5
        Page 6
        Page 7
        Page 8
        Page 9
        Page 10
        Page 11
        Page 12
        Page 13
        Page 14
        Page 15
        Page 16
        Page 17
        Page 18
Full Text






BULLETIN No. 11,

-OF THE--


EXPERIMENT STATION

OF FLORIDA,

-- AT THE-

STATE AGRICULTURAL COLLEGE,

Lake Citg, Florida.


OCTOBER, 1890.


EXPERIMENTS IN CORN AND IRISH POTATOES AND ANALYSIS OF
GRASSES, ETC.


REV. JAS. P. DEPASS, DIRECTOR.
STAFF:
DR. J. C. NEAL, ENTOMOLOGIST AND BOTANIST.
DR. J. M. PICKELL, CHEMIST.
J. J. EARLE, A. B., ASSISTANT CHEMIST.


JACKSONVILLE, FLORIDA :
DACOSTA PRINTING AND PUBLISHING HOUSE,
1S90.
L<




























NOTICE.
The laboratory of the Station will be worked to its utmost capacity
for several months in a special line of investigation, and hence all ap-
plications for analyses will be declined.
JAs. P. DEPASS,
Director.













GENERAL POLICY.


The policy in part I have laid down to follow is:
1. To find out the best and cheapest manures for all agricultural
products.
2. The best and cheapest methods of cultivation.
3. The tools which do the best work and are best adapted to our
soil and crops.
In regard to the two first, I have given some opinions in report-
ing crops. In reference to the third, I have also made some reports.
It may be well to state farther for the information of our farmers, that
the one horse Planet Jr. cultivator is a most complete tool, and ought
to be on every farm. It does its work well, is easily handled and saves
labor. This cultivator will do the best kind of work in a grove or
orchard. It is adapted to rough and smooth land, and to land with
or without stumps. The Chattanooga Plow Works gives us in the New
South the best turn plow I have used. This firm manufactures also
cheap and most excellent cane mills. I have just had tested one of
their portable furnaces and self-skimming evaporators for making
syrup. It is light, easily managed and does good and rapid work.
Mr. J. W. Butler, a practical syrup and sugar maker, gave an exhi.
bition of this furnace and evaporator on the station on the 3d of
November, which was a demonstration of its superior advantages in
syrup making, for cleanliness and for uniform quality of syrup. Juice
was kept flowing in the pan at one end constantly, by means of a
faucet in a barrel elevated above the pan, and in twenty-three
minutes Mr. Butler had syrup running out the other end, which was
kept up until the day faded into night.
Clark's two-horse cutaway harrow is a most excellent tool, and
for pulverizing rough and cloddy land and for covering small seed
after the land is broken up is without an equal. In preparing a
piece of land this fall for rye, which had grown up in large weeds and
grass, I run this harrow both ways over the field, and it not only broke
them down, but to a large extent cut them up, thus making it easy
work for a one horse turn plow to turn under weeds and grass
thoroughly.


CORN EXPERIMENT.


The main idea in the corn experiment this year was in selecting a
plot of land that would represent as near as possible the average land
of the State. Without a practical knowledge of the producing quali-
ties of the plots selected last year, results proved that the quality
of land was above the average; one plot bringing 19% bushels









4
per acre and the other 13 bushels without fertilizer. The yield
last year in excess of the natural land, as may be seen in Bulletin
7, under very heavy fertilization was too small to warrant the
opinion that excessive and costly fertilization of corn would be profit-
able. Nor am I prepared from this year's experience to venture the
opinion that the intensive system will become, or ought to be the
rule of the farmer in regard to this crop. Seasons and climatic
causes largely modify the yield, and these are so variable in our State
as to prevent any definite average as to annual production. It has be-
come a settled conviction among farmers that our climate is not
adapted to the profitable production of corn as a marketable crop.
While the yield has doubtless had much to do with this opinion,
the true cause may most likely be attributed to the soil. The follow-
ing analysis in Bulletin 2, of the station soil, five inches deep, taken
from a part of the farm that has been cleared the longest, and which
has been in cultivation over thirty years, gives an idea of its product-
ive forces: Water, o.5i per cent. ; organic and volatile matter, 1.27;
sand, 96.02; clay, 2.77; oxides of iron and aluminum, 0.33; lime,
0.06; magnesia, 0.03 ; phosphoric acid, 0.07; potash and soda, 0.09.
This land was originally high hammock, bordering a large lake.
This one in Bulletin 5 is taken from the virgin soil in low hammock,
about one hundred yards from the lake, the same depth: Moisture
at 1oo degrees, 0.59 per cent.; organic and volatile matter, 2.50;
lime, 0.03 ; magnesia, 0.02; phosphoric acid, 0.02; potash and soda,
o.io; iron and aluminum oxides, 0.13; clay, 0.50; sand, 96.00.
These two samples give some idea of the available land upon the
station.
Now, if these are compared with the analysis of land planted
in corn adjacent to Missouri Experimental Station, on which a most
elaborate and scientific experiment last year was made, it will be seen
that the Missouri soil is far better adapted to the growth of corn than
that used by me. It is as follows: Analysis, i, a. : Water at ioo
degrees, 1.82 per cent.; nitrogen, total, o 14, carbon, total, 1.63;
loss by ignition, 6.97; silica, 77.82; aluminum, 8.93; oxide of iron,
3.05; lime, 0.63; magnesia, 0.64; potash, 1.32; soda, 1.59; phos-
phoric acid, 0.08. The increase does not warrant the use of fertiliz-
ers on this soil. In Florida the question as to whether it is profitable
to plant corn has been settled by the universal practice of our farmers
who plant the standard crop- in trying to make enough for home de-
mands. It would be a sad day, indeed, if they were to reach the
conclusion that it would be better to buy their grain instead of raising
it, until the products of our State in the farming sections change,
as they have done so largely in East and South Florida. And it is be-
coming a very important question with some, in the Eastern and
Southern portions of our State where vegetables and fruits are the lead-
ing products, if the planting of corn, at least to a limited extent, would
not be better than to neglect it altogether, when the prices paid for West-
ern corn ranges from 60 cents to $i.oo per bushel, and forage
from $20.00 and upwards per ton, to say nothing of the labor and
time in hauling it.








5
The land selected was as poor as I thought could be found on the
station, except some which was almost entirely sterilized by various
causes unnecessary to mention here. The rows were five feet apart
and the corn on the unfertilized plot averaged three feet in the drill,
the fertilized about eighteen inches. The stand on each plot was a
complete one..
The stand in the fertilized plots was too crowded and, as a result,
some stalks failed to ear while some others did not bear as heavy ears
as they otherwise would have done.
The fodder was not pulled and the corn was fully matured.
The land was prepared by bedding with the New South. The
water furrow was fertilized March i4th, and covered with two fur-
rows by a four inch bull-tongue. On March 24th the furrows were
opened with a bull-tongue and the seed planted and covered with two
furrows by the same plow.
When the plants began to break the ground and some were up as
high as one or two inches, a straight-toothed harrow was run across the
plots, leaving them level. The use of the harrow at this time is two-
told. First, it breaks the crust, ensuring a good stand; and, second,
it serves as a working by killing the young grass and the germs of grass
seed just beginning to sprout.
The corn was worked by the Planet Jr. cultivator on April IIth,
25th and May 13th. When laid by it was about four feet high or
when it was bunching to tassel.
The unfertilized plot yielded 73 bushels.
Plot No. 2 was fertilized with Pot-Ammoniac, manufactured by
the Cotton Ginning Company, Madison, Fla. Its cost, delivered,
was $27.50, per ton. One thousand pounds was placed on an acre
and the yield was 20o3 bushels. The excess costing per bushel in
round figures $1.05.
No. 3.-One thousand pounds of Blood and Bone was used at a
cost of $36.50 per ton. The yield was 24V3 bushels. Cost per
bushel of excess was $I. i.
No. 4.-This experiment was made with a compost made on th'e
farm, the formula of which is given below, at the rate of one ton per
acre. Outside the stable manure the cost of materials in one ton was
$6.66. The yield was 27 3 bushels. Cost per bushel of excess was
in a fraction of 35 cents.
No. 5 was made with one thousand pounds black'cotton-seed
meal manufactured by the Cotton Ginning Company, of Madison,
Fla. Its cost per ton, with freight, was $22.50. The yield was 32,
bushels. The cost per bushel of excess was nearly 46 cents.
In giving the value per bushel of the excess the fractional part
of a cent is not stated.
The Pot-Ammoniac and Blood and Bone experiments will be
dropped out the next season for the reasons that they are too costly
and are not adapted to corn. For the same reason we dropped out
this year several fertilizers used the last.
It will be seen, by comparing the experiment with cotton-seed
meal with last year's, that the same amount of corn per acre was made









6

this year on much poorer land with one thousand pounds as was made
with one ton the past year. The cause of this may be that last year
there was not enough rain to dissolve the manure, the season being
very dry in the growing and making period, while this year there were
good rains
The above fact suggests that too much fertilizer may be used and
as good results with a less quantity may be obtained. The land so,
heavily fertilized the past year with crushed cotton-seed and cotton-
seed meal was planted again this year without fertilizing. The yield
was less than land that had never been fertilized in the same field.
The experiments the past year was in favor of cottonseed meal.
This year the compost makes the cheapest corn and the cottonseed
meal the next.


IRISH POTATO EXPERIMENT.

The object of this experiment was a test of the various kinds of
seed sold in Jacksonville, in order to find the best adapted to our soil
and climate. Accordingly I bought seed of every variety offered on
the market the middle of January.
The land was prepared by bedding out the rows three and one-
half feet wide. The fertilizer used was the compost as given on an-
other page. The amount per acre was 2,000 pounds, or thirty-six
pounds to the row, allowing seventy yards square to the acre. The
fertilizer was evenly distributed in rows by hand, antd mixed by running
a straight shovel or bull tongue in the row.
The seed was cut thin with one and two eyes and dropped one
foot apart in drill on January 30, and covered with two furrows by a
New South. They were plowed March 20, and plowed and hoed
April 12.
The March freeze cut them back to the ground, but they soon
rallied, making a good stand. The seasons were very favorable. The
soil was light and sandy, high and dry, and of medium quality. The
plot selected had been cultivated for years in vegetables and field
crops.
The potatoes were well matured and of good size, having but a
very small percentage of culls.
The earliest was the Chili Red, and next The Beauty of Hebron.
The Chili Red began to mature about April roth, and The Beauty of
Hebron the 2oth. The Scotch Magnum was the latest, maturing
about the 15th of May, and the Burbank a week earlier.
The following eight varieties were planted: Jackson White,
Eastern Fancy Rose, Chili Red, The Early Beauty of Hebron, Peer-
less, Russetts, Burbank and Scotch Magnum.
The Scotch Magnum yielded 104Y bushels per acre.
The Burbank, 160o3 bushels.
The Russetts, 74Y bushels.
Peerless, iioT0 bushels.








7
Early Beauty of Hebron, 104 buhels.
Chili Red, 74%4 bushels.
Eastern Fancy Rose, 52 bushels.
Jackson White, 22% bushels.
They were all white except the Scotch Magnum and Early
Beauty of Hebron, which are pink eyed.
It will be observed that the largest yield was made by the Bur-
bank.
There was no experiment made in unfertilized land. Experience
has demonstrated that Florida soil will not produce the potato unless
well fertilized, except in fresh hammock. When planted in hammock
the yield is not large comparatively, and then it is liable to injury from
worms and fungus growths, which causes it to rot sometimes before
maturity or soon after being dug. Even in rich garden spots or cow-
pens on pine land, when there is much vegetable matter in the soil,
the rot assails the potato and renders it almost worthless.
The above crop was free from any disease or enemy, and seed
potatoes were saved for fall planting.
The potato after being dug, if housed in a dry dark room or under
the house where it is dry, and spread out, not being allowed to bulk,
will keep bright through the summer and fall. If housed where the
light is not excluded, they become watery and the skin greenish, ren-
dering them unfit to eat.
The Irish potato as a paying crop is rather doubtful in Northern
Florida, unless it can be made in larger quantities than the above ex-
periments indicate, and unless it can be marketed earlier than other
sections more favorable to its production. The Chili Red and Beauty
of Hebron, if they can be produced in sufficient quantity and without
too much cost as to fertilizers and transportation, give some promise in
this direction.
If in South Florida, where fall and winter plantings can be
made without the fear of damaging frosts, and where they can be ma-
tured early in the spring, if they can be produced in sufficient quantity
and shipped in car-load lots, which is cheaper, it is possible that this
section of the State may have a monopoly of the early market.
For the benefit of those who are interested in this crop, both for
market and home consumption, I quote largely from Bulletin 4, Sec-
ond Series of the Louisiana Experimental Station, an elaborate and
extensive experiment on two stations:
First, on Sugar Experiment Station, No. I, Audubon Park, New
Orleans, ten varieties, usually sold for seed in New Orleans, were
fertilized with cottonseed meal and acid phosphate at the rate of 500
pounds per acre. The yield in merchantable potatoes was from 74.4
to 136.6 barrels.
On the North Louisiana Experiment Station fifty-seven varieties
were planted. In regard to soil it says :
"The soil was a loose gray sand, very poor. Previous culture,
ensilage corn Broken with two horses. Rows laid off three feet
apart, with straight shovel, into these furrows the fertilizer was evenly
distributed by hand and covered with two furrows of turn plow. This











was opened again with straight shovel and into this furrow, pieces of
potatoes, cut to three or four eyes, weredropped, twelve inches apart
and covered with a turn plow. The fertilizer used was 700 pounds
per acre, of a mixture consisting of 400 pounds cottonseed meal, 200
pounds acid phosphate and 1oo pounds kainit. The seasons were
very propitious. It received one cultivation with hoe and plow."
The conclusions as to yield were:
"Six of the above varieties yielded over four hundred bushels per
acre, viz.: Boston Peerless, Vermont Early Rose, Beauty of Hebron,
Cayuga, Callun's Superb, and Russet. Eleven gave over three hun-
dred and fifty bushels, viz.: Parson's Prolific, Enos Seedling, Home
Comfort, Late Favorite, Webb's Early, Sylvian, Extra Early Vermont,
Dunn's Seed, Early Pui-itan, Dictator, Platt's No. 5. Thirteen fol-
lowed with yields over three hundred bushels per acre, viz. : Baker's
Imperial, Strawberry, Bliss' Triumph, Burbank, Sunset, Great Eastern,
English Kidney, Rural Blush, Irish Cup, Scotch B., Dunnmore, James
Vick, and Buffalo Beauty. Of the remainder, seven gave less than
two hundred bushels per acre.
"*'The lowest yield was 170 bushels per acre, while the highest
435."
In reference to size of seed it says:
"Shall we plant the whole potato or cuttings, and what size of
each are most productive and economical ? Seven varieties of potatoes
were used, each being treated exactly alike.
"In each row there were planted eight large potatoes, [a]; eight
medium potatoes, [b]; eight pieces, cut, two or more eyes, [c]; and
eight pieces cut to one eye, [d]; weighed and planted one foot apart.
"Below is a table giving weight of potatoes and cuttings planted;
[a], weight of eight large potatoes ; [b], weight of eight medium pota-
toes; [c], weight of eight cuttings, two or more eyes, and [d] weight
of eight cuttings, one eye.


Weight of 8 Weiglhtof 8 me- Weightof8 cut- Weight of 8
large potatoes dium potatoes tings, 2 or more cuttings,one
NAME OF VARIETY USED. planted. planted. eyes planted, eye planted.
"A" "B" "C" "D"

Early Rose............ ...... 3 lbs I 1-4 lbs 7-16 lb 1-6 lb
Boston Peerless. ............ 4 lbs 5-8 Ibs 5-8 lb 1-8 lb
Beauty of Hebron............. 2 11-16 bs I b 7-16 lb 1-4 Ib
Rural Blush.................. 3 Ibs I 1-4 lbs 7-16 lb 3-16 lb
Extra Early Vermont ..... .. 2 7-24 lbs i lb 5-8 lb I-8 lb
Russett................ .... 2 7-16 lbs 7-16 lbs 1-2 lb 1-8 lb
Burbank ......... .. ....... 5-16 lbs I lb 3-16 lb 1-8 lb

In regard to the yeld:
"The productive results obtained concur with those of previous
years; the larger the seed planted the greater the yield. The econom-
ical results are, however, different. To determine these an account
must be taken of seed planted and the net yield per acre determined.
To make this plain, a table is given showing amounts planted per acre
with each experiment and variety, together with the net yield. In









9

this calculation a farmer's acre seventy yards square is assumed for
convenience. The rows were three feet apart and the potatoes drop-
ped one foot apart. This gives 14,560 hills per acre.
"The following will give a concise statement of results:

"A," "B," C" II "D,"
Bushels per Bushels per Bushels per Bushels per
"' Bp Bushels per
acre, acre, acre. acre.
VARIETY. -


___ ___ Z__.z z
-Early Rose........................... 97% 2784 I 41 265 I4 248 5% 254%
Boston Peerless....................... 30 263 45 266 20 335 4 209
Beauty of Hebron............. ....... 87 218 32% 255% 14 254 8 203
Rural Blush ........................ 97% 276% 41 192 14 155 12 147
Extra Early Vermont................. 74% 134% 33% 144% 20 183 4 173
Russet............................... 8 198 14 260 6 242 4 158
Burbank .............................. 43 2ii 32% 60% 6 207 4 121
Average........ ................ 87 225%i 34% 220% 5225 6 181

"From the above it would seem that while the total production
is in direct proportion to the size of potato planted, the net yield, after
.deducting seed planted, varies but little. It is doubtful whether on a
large scale pieces of potatoes larger than four eyes or smaller than two
.eyes, will be found of the most profitable use as seed."
Twenty experiments with different kinds and quality of fertilizers
'were made, among which acid phosphate and cottonseed meal gave the
best results. Kainit, it states, does not appear to be adapted to this
-crop. It says also that-
"The mineral forms of nitrogen did not accomplish results ex-
pected. They were doubtless washed from the soil by the very heavy
rains of early spring before the plant could assimilate them, and again
suggest caution in the use of these forms upon sandy soils in this cli-
mate.
"Cotton seed, either whole, crushed or composted, and cottonseed
meal are most excellent forms of nitrogen for this plant, and when
*combined properly with acid phosphate gives the best fertilizers for
Irish potatoes."
The following deductions from experiments are given to our read-
ers which may be of value to them:
"First: Select for planting varieties known to be adapted to soil
and climate.
"Second: Western-raised potatoes are as good for seed as those
raised in the East, and are usually cheaper.
"Third: There is no necessity of buying seed from either, as
home-grown seed are equal if not superior to any.
"Fourth: Cotton seed, or cottonseed meal, mixed with a high
grade acid phosphate, furnishes an excellent and cheap fertilizer for
potatoes, and should be used liberally.
"Fifth: That cuttings containing from two to four eyes are per-
haps the best size of the seed, when planted on a large scale.








10

"Sixth: That any early potato crop when properly harvested
and shipped can be made very profitable."
I note that the unfertilized land brought from 56 to 75.6 bushels
of merchantable potatoes, and with culls from 71.4 to 92. bushels.
With 1512 lbs. cottonseed meal and 420 lbs. acid phosphate, the
largest yield was made 372.5 bushels, including 50 bushels of culls.



FERTILIZERS.

The fertilizers used mainly on the farm this year were Blood and
Bone, Ground Bone, Pot Ammoniac, Black Cotton Seed Meal, Paine &
Son's Orange Food and Cane Fertilizer, Acid Phosphate, Copperas, and
a compost made on the farm.
The formula for compost is: 2000 lbs. stable manure and 333
lbs. each of cottonseed meal, kainit and acid phosphate placed in cov-
ered pen, in the order named, the above constituting one layer and
wet thoroughly this repeated until pen is full, when the top is covered
with dry dirt and left from two to three months, when it is ready for
use. The compost is prepared for distribution by taking out one side
of pen and cutting from the top down and mixing well with hoe, being
careful to break all lumps.
This compost was used on every crop, except with cane, giving
very gratifying results. I have modified its proportions for the next
year, adding other materials for the purpose of improving it, while I
have also retained the above formula for use.
My object is to produce a fertilizer that is within the reach of
every farmer in the State, if a little industry and care is used, that is
cheap, and that will produce results with those, the cost of which are
beyond the man of moderate means. The above formula is made upon
the station at a cost of $6 66 for materials, outside of labor and the stable
manure. Two men can take manure out of stable, weigh it, and with
the other ingredients pen from eight to eleven tons a day. A basket
or barrel is filled with stable manure and weighed. After weighing
several barrels an average can be obtained, when the work may proceed
without further delay. The same course is pursued with the other
materials.
I selected four rows of orange trees and used 25 lbs. of this com-
post on one row, 15 lbs. ground bone on the second, 15 lbs. of Paine
& Son's Orange Food on the third, 15 lbs. of acid phosphate on the
fourth. The acid phosphate alone, while it produced some results,
was not as good as either of the other three.
The other three produced a fine growth and but little, if any, dif-
ference would be observed between them.
On vegetables, such as cabbage, beets, onions, beans, lettuce,
okra, squashes and melons, both water and musk, I used the compost in
comparison with cottonseed meal, and the results were very much in
favor of the compost. It is noticable that in the use of cottonseed
meal and crushed cotton seed no benefit to a second crop is observed,








II

while the above compost improves the lands. Some advantage is per-
ceptable the second year with rotted bone and gossypium, but not to
that extent where the compost is used.
The compost used on peach and pear trees is a most excellent fer-
tilizer, and the addition of one pound of sulphate of iron, which is
copperas, is manifest.
Thus far cottonseed meal and the compost give the best results for
a greater variety of crops over others used.







ANALYSIS OF SOME FLORIDA WEEDS AND

GRASSES.

I. The Value to be Attached to Chemical Analysis of Feeding Stuffs.
II. Meaning of the Terms Used in the Analysis of Feeding Stuffs.
III. Some Florida Weeds and Grasses as Feeding Stuffs.

J. M. PICKELL.

In Table I (end of Bulletin) are given the analysis of a few grasses and weeds common
in Florida.

I. THE VALUE TO BE ATTACHED TO CHEMICAL ANALYSIS OF FEED-
ING STUFFS.
The animal organism, notwithstanding its great complexity,
is composed of comparatively few substances. These few substances
can be reduced to still fewer classes. All animal natter is either com-
bustible or incombustible (ash). The combustible part is either nitro-
genous (containing nitrogen) or non-nitrogenous (not containing nitro-
gen). The non nitrogenous part consists of fat, oil, tallow, etc. The
muscles, tendons, nerves, etc., are made up of nitrogenous substan-
ces. These various substances find their way into the animal organ-
ism through the food. This is equivalent to saying through plants.
All animals live either directly or indirectly on vegetable matter.
Hence, we would expect to find close resemblance in the composi-
tion of animal and vegetable substances. This resemblance (almost
identity) exists. The ash of plants contains every substance found in
the ash of animals. The combustible part of plants contains either
identically the same compounds found in the combustible part of
animals, or else the compounds from which the latter are built
up. Chemical analysis alone cannot tell whether a plant is fit for
food, but, if fit for food, it can tell how much of the vari-
ous crude food constituents it contains. What gives value to a









12

"feeding stuff, however, is not how much of the crude food constitu-
ents it contains, but how much of those constituents is digestible.
Digestibility can be ascertained only by experiments on animals.* (It
should be stated that there are artificial or laboratory methods
of testing digestibility, and that they give results closely coincid-
ing with those obtained by actual experiments on animals.) Chemi-
cal analysis, therefore, unaccompanied by digestion experiments, is
merely suggestive of what may be the value of a feeding stuff.

II. MEANING OF TERMS USED IN THE ANALYSIS OF PLANTS.
PROTEIN.-This term is used to designate all nitrogenous sub-
stances in a feeding-stuff. The greater part of these consists of albumi-
noids, of which there is a large number. Albumin (the white of an
egg), fibrin (lean meat), and casein (the basis of cheese) will serve as ex-
amples. They are all quite similar in composition. All, whether of
vegetable or animal source, consist of nitrogen, carbon, hydrogen, ox-
ygen and sulphur, in about the following proportions :
Carbon .. . ..... 52 to 54 per cent.
Hydrogen .. . . ...... .7 per cent.
Nitrogen ... . .. ... . . 15 to 17 per cent.
Oxygen . . . . . 21 to 24 per cent.
Sulphur . . ... ... . . to 1.5 per cent.
As previously stated, the muscles, tendons, nerves and the blood
(largely)-in a word, that part of the organism subject to the greatest
wear and tear and waste is made up of albuminoids. Albuminoids
are, therefore, the most important part of feeding stuff; they are also
the least abundant and most costly. A plant which furnishes them in
greatest quantity is, other things being equal, the most valuable. As
a rule, the albuminoids are most abundant in young, tender and grow-
ing plants. As the plant becomes mature they accumulate in the
seeds. Hence it is that grasses whose seeds are so small as to be
largely lost in harvesting, or else so small as to escape mastication and
to pass through the system undigested, should be cut while young,
before the albuminoids have gone into the seeds.
FIBER.-This is the most abundant of the non-nitrogenous con-
stituents of plant food. The framework of plants consists of cells,
sacks or tubes, the walls of which are cellulose or wood fiber. Ex-
amples of almost pure cellulose are cotton, flax, unsized paper. Cel-
lulose is noted for its slight solubility-neither water, weak acids or
alkalies dissolve it. By the action of strong sulphuric acid vitriol)
it is converted into grape sugar. Cellulose is not, as was formerly
supposed, indigestible. But the digestibility decreases the older
and more woody a plant is. As much as 30 to 70 per cent. of
that contained in most of the common fodders is digestible.
NITROGEN-FREE EXTRACT.-Under this head are included starch,
sugar (cane, fruit and milk sugar) and gums. Starch is identical in
*Experiments of this kind require complicated and costly apparatus, as well as much
time and a great amount of most painstaking observation and work ; and few, if any, have
been made, or are being made, in this country. All that is known on the subject is due
mainly to German scientists.









13

composition with cellulose, and it is second to it in quantity in the
vegetable kingdom. If boiled with dilute acid it is converted into
grape sugar.
CRUDE FAT.-If dry vegetable substances are washed with ether,
the ether will extract therefrom the vegetable oils and fats, and also
small quantities of waxlike substances and coloring matter. These
oils, fats, waxlike substances and coloring matter are not easily (if at
all) separable from one another, and are all included under the term
"crude fat."
Fiber or cellulose, starch, sugar, gums and fat are all composed
of hydrogen, oxygen and carbon, and are known collectively as carbo-
hydrates. Just as the albuminoids are the muscle producers, so these
non-nitrogenous substances are heat-producers. Their consumption
supplies the animal body with warmth.
The digestible fiber, starch, sugar, gums are all regarded of equal
value as heat producers. The digestible fat, on the other hand, is
regarded as having 2 times the heat producing capacity of the fore-
going pound for pound. Digestible fat, therefore, is 2 times as
valuable, pound for pound, as the other heat-producers.
NUTRITIVE RATIO.-The quantity of digestible albuminoids in a
feeding-stuff as compared with the quantity of digestible heat-pro-
ducers is known as the nutritive ratio. Average meadow hay has the
following composition:
Water..... ... .. 14.3 per ceut.
Ash ..... 6.
Protein.......................... 9.7 ; digestible 5.4, t r 56 per cent. of the whole.
Crude fibre .................. 26.3 15.0, or 57
Nitrogen-free extract....... .41.0 ; 25 8, or 63
Crude fat ......................... 2.5 ; 1.2, or 48
Multiply the digestible fat by 2 and we get 3. Now add 3,
the digestible fiber 15, and the digestible nitrogen-free extract 25.8, and
we get 43.8. The nutritive ratio of average meadow hay is, there-
fore, as 5.4 to 43.8, or as i to 8 i.
The following is the nutritive ratio of some common feeding stuffs:
Potatoes . . .. r to 12 Wheat bran . . .I to 4
Turnips . . ... S Corn meal . . ... "10
Oats. . . . .i 6 Cottonseed meal. . i "
Maize . . . ... 9 Wheat straw .. 1 "69
Cow peas. ... .i 3 Oat straw ..... 28
Brewer's grain (dry) . 3 2 Pea straw ... ... I 4
The meaning of this is that potatoes contain 12 times, cow peas
3 times, wheat straw 69 times as much heat-producing as muscle pro-
ducing substance. Cow peas have a narrow nutritive ratio, that is
are rich in protein. The reverse is true of potatoes and wheat straw,
which have a wide nutritive ratio.
It is manifest that an animal should be supplied daily with food
in such quantity, and containing the heat-producers and muscle-pro-
ducers in such proportions as to compensate for the daily wear, tear
and drain upon its system. And if the feeding is to be economical,
it should be so conducted that there be no unnecessary consumption









14

of the various food constituents. If, for example, it be found that a
given animal needs 1.50 pounds of albuminoids, 9.5 pounds of nitro-
gen-free extract and fiber, and 0.4 pounds of fat per day, it would
manifestly be wasteful to mix its food in such a way that it would get
2 pounds of albuminoids per day. A food so proportioned as to meet
exactly the requirements of the animal is called a ration. It is evident
that the ration will vary according to the size of the animal, according
to whether it is at rest or work, according to whether it is young and
growing or is full grown, fattening or not fattening, milking or not
milking, wool-producing or not wool producing. The observant
stock-feeder has been quick to note these different requirements.
A goodly number of scientific experiments have been made with
a view to fixing Feeding Standards.
Thus it has been found that for ,0ooo pounds of live weight ani-
mals need the following quantity of food and proportions of the differ-
ent nutrients per day:

NUMBER OF POUNDS OF DRY MATTER, AND OF EACH NUTRIENT NEEDED
PER DAY BY EACH 1,000 POUNDS OF LIVE WEIGHT:




I" n !
0 0' o 'a C



Horse at light work... ................. ... 21.oo 1.50 9.50 0.40 11.40 to 7.0
Horse at heavy work...... ................ 25 50 2.80 1340 0.80 17.00oo 5.5
Oxen at rest in stall .................... 17.50 0.70 8.o o .15 8.85 I 2.o
Oxen at heavy work....................... 6.oo00 2.40 13.20 0.50 16.10 i 6.0
Oxen fattening, Ist period .................. 27 00 250 15.00 0.50 i8.oo 1 6.5
2d ........... 26 oo00 3 o00o 14.8o 0.70 18 5o 5-5
" 3d ................. 25.00 2.70 14.80 0.60 I8io II 6.0
Milk cows ..... ....................... 24.00 2.5 1 12.5 0.40 15.40 I 5 4

This list might be indefinitely extended, but it is sufficient to show
that the teachings of science agree with the everyday experience, that
the food of an animal must be adjusted to the kind of life the animal
leads. Thus an ox at hard work requires not only more food than
when at rest, but also a differently compounded food. Whereas 17y4
pounds per day of a food containing I pound of digestible albumin-
oids to 12 pounds of digestible heat-producers are sufficient when at
rest, at hard work 26 pounds of a food in which the proportion of
albuminoids is twice as great (i to 6) is necessary.
A glance over table No. I (see end of Bulletin) will show that cot-
tonseed meal, cow peas, wheat bran and cow pea vines are to be
classed in the order named among the feeding stuffs especially rich in
albuminoids; oats, clover hay, Indian corn among the moJerately
rich. Indian corn, it will be noted, is much less concentrated than
oats, contains, that is, much more starch and much less albuminoids.
A feeding stuff rich in albuminoids should be fed in connection with
coarse fodders, such as are rich in fiber, starch, etc. ; cottonseed meal.








15
for example, with a small amount of corn meal and with considerable
amount of hay, corn fodder, etc.
It was not intended here to more than barely touch on the subject
of cattle feeding. Too much thought cannot be given to it. Enough
has been said to indicate that scarcely any single feeding stuff meets
all requirements of a perfect ration and to emphasize the advantage of
using mixed feed.

III. SOME FLORIDA WEEDS AND GRASSES AS FEEDING STUFFS.
THE BEGGAR WEED.
Diligent search for a hay-producing plant suitable to Florida
soil and climate has been made in recent years. The beggar weed
seems to meet these demands to large extent, and deserves most
careful consideration. Below is given an analysis of it. The
analysis expresses the number of pounds of the different nutrients
in ioo pounds of the air-dry plant. By air-dry is meant that the
plant, after being cut, was cured by exposing it a short while (a day
or so) to the sun, and then allowed to lie under shelter. The plant
was not rained on or otherwise wet after cutting. A plant will vary in
composition according to the soil, the manuring, season, etc. Hence
to get at the average composition, many analyses of many plants grown
in different places, in different years and under different conditions of
fertilizing, should be made. The analysis given here is that of two
plants only, cut at different stages of development (one in green seed,
the other not yet seeding), grown the same season (the one just
passed) and on different soil, one high hammock, twenty or thirty years
in cultivation, and not recently fertilized, the other flat pine woods
richly fertilized. Alongside of the beggar weed analysis is given the
average composition of average meadow hay:
Beggar Weed. Average Meadow Hay.
Moisture .. .9.16 per cent. 14.30 per cent.
Crude Ash . . . . 4.72- 6.20 "
Crude Protein . .. 11.85 9 70 "
Crude Fat . . .. 2.92 2.50
Crude Fiber . 29.29 26.30 "
Nitrogen-free extract. . 42.06 41 oo
Nutritive ratio . . .. i to 7 i to 8 "
The digestibility of the different nutrients in the beggar weed has,
so far as I know, never been determined; but assuming it to be equal
to that of average meadow hay, its nutritive ratio is as r to 7, whereas
that of the hay is as i to 8-a decided advantage in favor of the weed.
As to the best time of cutting the weed for hay I am not in-
formed, but on general principles would say, before the seeds have
matured and the stalk has hardened too much into indigestible fiber.
As has been stated, the albuminoids are most abundant in the young
and growing parts of plants. As the plant matures, they are trans-
ferred to, and accumulate in, the seeds, at the expense of the other parts
of the plant. If the matured seeds are quite small, liable to drop off










in harvesting or to escape mastication, the albuminoids in them are
lost to the animal.
Beggar weed will make two crops of hay. The second crop is
said to be less stemmy than the first, and is regarded by some as the
very best of hay, when properly cured.
FROELICHIA FLORIDANA.
This weed is sometimes known as cotton head. It flourishes
over the northern and western and perhaps other parts of the
State. A recent writer in the Times-Union states that he has seen
cattle eat it freely. It contains about one-third as much crude
protein as the beggar weed, about two-thirds as much crude fat, and
somewhat more crude fiber and nitrogen, free extract. Though it may
possess considerable value as a nutrient, it is, from a chemical stand-
point, vastly inferior to the beggar weed. Assuming that each pos
sess the digestibility of meadow hay, the nutritive ratio of beggar
weed is as one to seven and of the cottonhead as one to twenty-three.
The plant analyzed was cut August 22, and was in bloom.
SAND SPUR.
The plants analyzed were cut September i2th. The spurs were
still somewhat green. If the plants had been cut at an earlier stage
of growth, they might have shown better analysis. The crude
fat, fiber and nitrogen-free extract, in this grass is about the same
in quantity as that in average meadow hay, but it contains but
little over one-half as much crude protein.
PURSLEY.
Plant cut while in bloom September 6th. This is a common
garden weed and is sometimes used as a pot-herb. Hogs are found of
it. The green plant contains about 90 to 95 per cent. of water. The
air-dry plant is very rich in protein and fat, poor in fiber and nit-
rogen-free extract.

CRAB GRASS, BULL GRASS, CROWFOOT GRASS, LOUISIANA GRASS.
The analysis would indicate that these are all good grasses,
but they contain considerably less protein than average meadow hay.
WIRE GRASS.
Poor in protein.


SPANISH MOSS.
By this is meant the gray moss that hangs in long festoons on the
trees of our Florida forests. I have often seen cattle chewing this
moss, more particularly in the winter and early spring. Analysis
shows it to possess considerable crude nutrients. Assuming that
these nutrients are as digestible as in the case of oat straw, moss
possesses considerably more value as a feeding stuff than oat








17

straw. This is merely from a chemical standpoint. Whether or not
moss alone can sustain the life of an animal for a considerable time is
a question. Chopped up fine and sprinkled over with a little wheat-
bran, corn or oat-meal and salt, it might possibly prove of some value.

COTTON-SEED MEAL AS A FEEDING STUFF.
Among Southern food products, there is one which, though com-
ing more into use as its virtues are becoming understood, is still
too much neglected. I refer to cotton seed and cottonseed meal
(even cottonseed hulls are being fed to great advantage as coarse
fodder). The report of the South Carolina Experiment Station
for 1888 has this to say of cottonseed meal:
"Chemically considered, a ton of cottonseed meal must be
equivalent to two tons of corn for feeding stock, if there are at
hand coarse fodders, such as hay and straw, to mix with it. When
fed, something like one-tenth of the plant-food contained in it is lost,
and is not recovered in the manure. Its feeding value is in the neigh-
borhood of $40, its commercial value as fertilizer about $25. If fed,
and the manure saved, its value is then $4ox25-2.5o0$62.50. If
used as a fertilizer, its value is $25. The difference between the two
methods of using is, therefore, $37.50."
The same report estimates the following as a suitable daily
ration for a milk cow of one thousand pounds, live weight: 1o
pounds fodder corn (field cured), 11 pounds oat straw, 20 pounds tur-
nips, 3 pounds corn meal and 15 pounds of cottonseed meal.




















"TABLE I.

1oo pounds
a gr een Ioo pounds of air-dry plant contain
The analyses in this table down to and tain
including 278 were made at the Florida
Agricultural Experiment Station by J. J.
1^ 'E -
Earle. The rest are from various sources I
and are given for purpose of comparison. C
a 0t -M 0 0 0 0

A. Beggar weed (Desmodium molle)...... 5273 47.27 .. . . . . . .
266* Beggar weed (lower part, mainly
stalk) ................. ................. ... ...... 984 395 7.oo 6.56 36.12 230 40 79 ..
267* Beggar weed (upper part, leaves and
branches) .............................. ...... ..... 9.13 5.97 15.75 14.17 2646 3.35 39.34 ......
B. Beggar weed................... ... .. 48.0 5200 ...... ...... ...... . .... ..
268+ Beggar weed (lower part, mainly
stalk) ............. ...................... .. ...... 8.64 248 5 25 455 3495 5 4753
2691 Beggar weed (upper part, leaves and
branches).............................. ....... 06 6 5 1942 6.88 19.62 4 88 40.52
Average ofthe above............... 50.36 4963 9.16 4.72 11.85 10.54 29.29 2.92 42.06 :8
270. Cotton head weed (Frcelichia Flor-
idana)................................. 7333 26.67 .79 5.05 3.94 3-50 32-55 .92 45.75 23
271. Sandspur grass (Cenchrus tribuloides) 68.18 31i82 5.30 400 5.26 4.80 27.88 1.90 45.66
272. Wire grass (Aristida)................. 53.00 4700 0.15 2.95 3.28 3.06 2.71 .72 53-19 28
273. Pursely (Portulaca oleracea)......... 87.80 12.20 1.92 22.92 22-30 1.8 14.18 4.20 2448 :23
274. Crab grass (Panicum sanguinale).... ...... ...... 0.65 9.27 8.32 7.44 27.62 2 25 41.9 :
275. Bull grass (Eleusine India)......... ...... ......2 20 678 7. 66 21 5 235 4970 12
276. Crowfoot grass (Eleusine Egyptica).. ...... ...... 173 740 8.3 7.2 20.75 158 50.21 :o
277. Louisiana grass (Paspalum platycaule) ...... ...... 10.33 5.75 7.44 6.56 2930 .80 45.38
278. Moss (Tillandsia usneoides ,.) ...... ............. 14.85 4.0 5.07 3.92 2535 2.43 48.20 191
Cloverhay ..... ....... .. ............... .. ... ... 1137 6.23 12.5 26.8 2.44 40.55 6
Timothy hay (Phlenlm pratense).................... 0.2 4. 6.6 .... 3037 2.12 47.10 1:13
Baled hay, "extra fine". ................ ...... 1595 3.93 6 20 ...... 26.60 2.19 4513
Oat straw ...................................... .... 8.74 4.81 3.82 4152 2.22 38.89 i:28
Cow-peavines.............................. 14.05 8.41 15.68 9.80 2.87 42.17 1:4
Sweet potatoes............................ .......... 70.63 0.99 155 ...... 1361 0.38 25.09 ..
Pumpkins ................................ .......... 92.2 0.32 1.11 ..... 149 o.6 4.34
Oats..... ... .......... ................. 94 2 97 138 985 4 81 60.5 :6
Indian corn, Dent ................. ............... 0.09 .54 10.3 2.28 5.0 70.66 :9
Cow-pea ............................ ... 1479 320 2077 4.06 43 55 75 :3
Cottonseed meal .................................. 8.32 7.26 42.39 5.69 3.37 22.97
Cottonseed (hulls andkernels)............. ............77 6 1572 2573 1856 29.09 ......
Cottonseed hulls ...... ................ ...... .... 100 279 468 41.65 3.00 38.79 ....
W heat br n .............................. ...... .... 12.2 .... 5.07 .. 8.7 3.78 54.26 1:4
Green leaves (of trees) ................................ ... 4.00 5.20 ..... 1300 15.20 .....
*266 and 267 are lower and upper part of a plant five feet high and in seed.
o268 and 269 are lower and upper part of a plant two feet high and not yet in seed.
On basis of digestibility of meadow hay.
On basis of digestibility of oat straw.





University of Florida Home Page
© 2004 - 2010 University of Florida George A. Smathers Libraries.
All rights reserved.

Acceptable Use, Copyright, and Disclaimer Statement
Last updated October 10, 2010 - - mvs