BULLETIN No. 8
LAKE CITY, FLORIDA.
ANUAR Y, 1890.
)AS. P DEPASS, DIRECTOR.
DACOSTA PUBLISHING HOUSE,
a~~uu u~-_r-~-~is=r,;-- -- -~-------- ------------------
L^__ ----- .-X~T1~--:
REV. J. P. DEPASS . DIRECTOR.
DR. J. C. NEAL . ENTOMOLOGIST AND BOTANIST.
DR. J. M. PICKELL CHEMIST.
J. J. EARLE, A. B. ..... ASSISTANT CHEMIST.
INT RO DUCTIONX.
I give in this Bulletin Experiments No. 1 and 2, with black-seed
or long staple cotton. While they are not as satisfactory as they
ought to have been in consequence of late planting, unskilled labor,
protracted drought in spring, and excessive rains in summer; still they
are of sufficient importance to warrant me in giving them to the public.
Experimentsin rice, sugar cane, grasses and cereals, were not satisfac-
tory, but I shall give further attention to them and report in future
Large experiments are being made with deciduous and other
fruits, but as yet no developments worthy of public mention have
occurred. JAS. P. DEPASS, Director.
COTTON EXPERIMENT WITH LONG OR BLACK-SEED
The land selected was high, rolling and sandy, having been cleared
quite a number of years. Two acres were planted, one with
very fine and prolific seed obtained from H. F. Dutton & Co., of
Gainesville, Fla. The other was the Alford cott on which had the
reputation of being prolific and of a good quality. On each acre was
placed 250 pounds of black cotton-seed meal, and 250 pounds of Pot
Ammoniac, manufactured by The Madisin Cotton Ginning Co. The
cost per acre was $5.823 The land was prepared by bedding. The
fertilizer was placed in the row when the land was laid off, then
covered and then opened by a four-inch bull-tongue, then the seed
planted and covered with a board. The patch was planted on the 9th
of April, in the beginning of a drouht which lasted over two months.
The stand was, in consequence, a very poor one. Several replantings
with the same quality of seed failed to secure a good stand; and
failing in seed, resort was had to any that could be had, which was
the sweepings of a gin-house. With the last replant only one-eighth of
an acre had a good stand, the balance being about one-half. When
the drought was broken by a rain, about the first of June, the cotton
patch presented a very unpromising appearance. The plants ranged
in size all the way from two inches to eight in height, but grew off
rapidly, fruiting heavily from the ground up.
On the eighth of an acre, where the stand was good, there were
picked 130 pounds of seed cotton which, on the gins of Capt. A. B.
Hart, yielded forty pounds of lint. On the two acres were gathered
787 pounds, an average of 3932 pounds per acre. That part which
was not fertilized had a poor stand on it and the cotton from it is
estimated as if the whole acre had been fertilized. A new Superin-
tendent coming on the farm between the planting and gathering of the
crolo, was not aware of the unfertilized plot until after the first pick-
ing. But one-third of each acre was not fertilized. The estimate of
the unfertilized rows was thought to be about 175 pounds to the acre.
But, making it 200 pounds, it will be seen that the expenditure of
$5.82F an acre, even when the year was as unfavorable as this one, was
not an unprofitable investment of fertilizer.
If the eighth of an acre which yielded 130 pounds of seed cotton,
and which had a fairly good stand, which ordinarily can be had any
year, with careful fertilizing, planting and working, had obtained on
the entire plot, the yield per acre would have been 1,040 pounds seed
cotton, or 320 pounds of lint.
There is no doubt but that the yield, of lint is largely dependent
upon the character of the fertilizer used. A good stand of cotton is
also dependent largely upon the first working. If the running round
cotton and chopping out with hoe was substituted by simply cutting
out with a hoe and thinning by hand, at once supporting the plants
left by drawing a little dirt to them, the result would no doubt be
better. A great deal of cotton, when young and tender, and cotton is
one of the tenderest of plants, is killed by careless hoeing. The desire
to get through quickly and save expense and time proves generally
a greater cost than by being patient and careful. But the cotton
experiment was not a fair one this year for the following reasons:
1. The land was prepared, fertilized and planted at the same
time. The fertilizer should be put in at least two weeks before the
seed, to insure a stand from the first planting.
2. The seed were planted nearly a month later than they ought to
have been to insure the best results.
3. The seed were planted after the ground was too dry to sprout
them and did not have rain on them for nearly two months.
The next experiment was on three-quarters of an acre of old
land, fertilized at the rate of 500 pounds of cotton-seed meal to the
acre, costing $3.80}. The seed was what I could collect by sweeping
a gin-house. The land was thin, sandy and hilly. The patch was
planted June the 4th, being prepared as in experiment No. 1. The
seed sprouted quickly and grew off rapidly, but the stand was injured
with the hoe and the plow in the first working, as in experiment No. 1,
giving about two thirds of what is usually called a good stand. The
yield was 339 pounds of seed cotton, or 4231 pounds per acre.
The question of cotton raising is becoming a serious one in the
long cotton belt. The average per acre is being annually reduced by
various causes. One fruitful cause is from the rust, another from
improper cultivation, and another from the worm. The last enemy
science has taught how to combat successfully. The other two remain
to be solved by proper fertilization and cultivation.
Old and successful planters realize that neither fresh nor old land
yield fruit as freely as formally. They are confronted with the rust,
the shedding of bolls and the early dying of the plant, even
when the exact methods of cultivation are practiced as when
their lands yielded more abundantly. The question is worthy
of consideration as to whether both the soil and climate have and are
undergoing changes which materially affect the growing and fruiting
of this staple product. If this be true so far as the soil is concerned,
the remedy through careful experimentation may be found. If the
injury sustained arises in part from cultivation not adapted to climatic
c )nditions this may be remedied. It will be seen by the above experi-
ments that while this year the problem is not solved, still, with all the
disadvantages of weather and unskilled labor, the indications point to
the fact that fertilization and proper work are the chief remedies to what
may be, and what is largely believed to be by intelligent farmers, that
there has been a change both in soil and atmospheric conditions within
twenty-five years affecting the profitable cultivation of this crop. It
will be in part the work of the future of the Experiment Station to
plant with these facts in view.
The profitable planting of cotton in June, on old land when fer-
tilizers were used, has been long known and frequently resorted to in
the past when early planting failed. The practice has fallen
into desuetude on account of the ravages of the worm, which
generally makes its appearance from July to September in de-
tractive quantities, if it appears at all. Now that it is known
that cheap insecticides will readily destroy this pest, late planting
should not be neglected, at Flast to the extent of small areas. The
early oat and vegetable patch could be thus utilized, while at any rate
late replanting, when the stand is bad, is worth the time and the
WEEDS OF FLORIDA.
Of the 1,900 species of plants that are known to reside within the
limits of Florida, either indigenous or living without especial care,
less than 300 are ever classed as weeds," and not quite 50 rated as
troublesome by our planters.
Many of these will gradually extend over abandoned fields when
very slight cultivation would have kept them in subjection ; but others
seem to thrive despite the most strenuous efforts for their destruction.
The usual classifications, standards and methods of comparison pro-
posed by Northern botlanists are not well suited t0 our Floridian weeds.
Very few garden seeds are grown in Florida, and no seeds of field
crops, as the clovers, grasses, etc., hence the standards based on weed
seeds as adulterants are of little value.
It is not easy to make comparisons with the weeds that are com-
mon in the North, as most of them are only occasional visitors that,
from some deficiency in the soil or the peculiar climate, seem unwilling
to become permanent residents, or they flourish for awhile, then
rapidly become sterile and disappear.
The Datura (Jimson) is dwarfed the first year, and rarely sees the
third; the Chenopodium album (Lamb's quarter) dies out the second
year; Dandelions are but mere shadows of the golden beauties
that dot the meadows of the North, while, as far as I know, the Mal-
lows, Burdocks and Hound's tongues have not acquired a permanent
foothold anywhere in the State.
It has been a difficult matter to obtain data from the widely
separated sections of Florida, as from pressure of business, lack of
interest or scant botanical knowledge, but few replies were re-
ceived from correspondents. The list, therefore, is but a temporary
one, with, no doubt, many deficiencies to be supplied in the future.
The asterisk indicates plants common to all sections of the State;
the semi-tropical portion, below 28', has a special list.
I have arranged the names as nearly as possible in the relative
order in which they are found in the central and eastern sections of
Florida. The grasses are excepted, as they will be made an especial
study in the future.
As a rule I shall refer to these plants by their Latin names, but
the English equivalents are given in the list below, as far as known.
1. Portulaca oleracea, L. Pursley.*
2. Sisymbrium canescene, Nutt. Peppergrass.
3. Capsellabursa-pastoris, Mcench. Shepherd's purse.
4. Glottidium Floridanum, D C. Bladderbean *
5. Pterocaulon pycnostachyum, Ell. Black root.*
6. Vernonia angustifolia, Mx. Iron weed.*
7. Opuntia vulgaris, L. Prickly pear
8. Helianthus strumosus, L Wild Sunfl 'wer.
9. Datura stramonium, L. Jimson weed.*
10. Physalis angulata, L. Grou:ld cherry.*
11. Erechthites hieraciflia, Raf. Fireweed.*
12. Pyrrhopappus Carlinianus, D C. Florida Dandelion.
13. Sonchus asper, Vill. Milk thistle.
14. Cirsium horridulum, Mx. Bird's nest thistle.*
15. Heliophytum Indicum, D C. I'a!se Heliotrope.
16. Quamoclit vulgaris Chnis. Cypress vine.*
17. Solanum nigrum, L Nightshade*
18. Amarantus albus, L Pig weed ?*
19. chlorostachys, Willd*
20. hybridus, L*
21. Chenopodium album, L. Limb's quarter.
22. Heteropogon acuminatus, Trin. Broom grass.
23. Taraxacum dens-leonis, D sf Dandelion.
24. Lactuca elongata, Muhl. Wild lettuce.
25. Asimina parvifl.ra, Dunal. Papaw.*
26. grandiflora, *
28. Crotalaria ovalis, Pursh. Rattlebox.*
29. Erigeron Canadensis, L. Fleabane.
30. Helianthus Floridanus, Gray. Sunflower.
31. Stillingia sylvatica, L. Queen's delight.*
32. Paspalum digitarin, Poir. Crab grass.
1. Cyperus rotundus, L. Nut grass.*
2. Acanthospermum xanthioides, D C. Paraguay bur.
3. Urena lobata, L. Spanish bur.
4. Daucus pusillus, Mx. Wild Carrot.
5. Amarantus spinosus, L. Careless weed.*
6. Sida stipulata, Cav. Tea weed.*
7. Maruta Cotula, D. C. Dogfennel.
8. Abutilon Avicenne, Gaertn. Butterprints.
9. Argemone Mexicana, L. Mexican Poppy.
10. Isop ppus divaricatus, T. & G.
11. Aplopappus rubiginosus, T. & G.
12. Sonchus oleraceus. L. Milk weed.*
13. Bidens bipinnata, L. Spanish needles.*
14. Xanthium strumarium, L. Cocklebur.*
15. Verbesina enceliodes, Benth. Dogweed.
16. Ipomea tamnifolia, L. Bindweed.
17. Leonotis nepetsefolia, R. Br. Prickly mint.
18. Polygonum Persicaria, L. Knotweed.*
19. aviculare, L. "
20. Urtica urens, L. Nettle.
21. Lespedeza striata, H. and A. Japan clover.
22. Panicum Curtfsii, Chapm. Maiden cane.*
23. Richardsonia scabra. Ipecac weed.
1. Cenchrus echinatus, L. Cockspur.*
2. tribuloides. L. Sandspur.*
3. Ambrosia artemissefolia, L. Ragweed.*
4. Diodia teres, Walt. Compass weed.*
5. Gnaphalium polycephalum, Mx. Life everlasting.*
6. Rumex Engelmanni, Curtiss. Red weed, Sorrel.
7. CEnothera biennis, L. Evening Primrose
8. sinuata, L.*
9. Linaria Canadensis, Spreng. Toad Flax.*
10. Chenopodium Anthelminticum, L. Wormseed, Jerusalem
11. Cassia occidentalis, L. Coffee weed.
12. obtusifolia, L.*
13. Marilandica, L. *
14. Chamsechrista, L. Partridge Pea.*
15. Frcelichia Floridana, Moq. Cotton head.*
16. Mollugo verticillata, L. Carpet weed.*
17. Helenium tenuifolium, Nutt. Fennel.*
18. Eupatarium fceniculaceum, Willd. Fennel.*
19. coronopifolium, *
20. Sesuvium pentandrum, L. Sand Pursley.*
21. Lepidium Virginicum, L. Pepper grass.*
22. Specularia perfoliata, D C.
23. Oxalis stricta, L. Sorrel, Shamrock.
24. Monarda punctata, L. Horsemint.*
25. Passiflora incarnata, L. May pop, Passion flower.*
26. Sida spinosa, L. Tea weed.
27. rhombifolia, L. Tea weed.
28. Rhus toxicodpndron, L. Poison Ivy.*
29. Ambrosia trifida, L. Ragweed.
30. Trifolium reflexum, L. Buffalo Clover.
31. Gerardia divaricata, Chapm.
32. Mulgedium acuminatum, D C. Milk weed.
33. Stachys Floridana, Shuttl, Hedge nettle.
34. Lamium amplexicaule, L. Dead nettle.
35. Callicarpa Americana, L. French Mulberry.*
36. Solaium Carolinense, L. Horse nettle.*
Physalis viscosa, L. Ground Cherry.
Phytolacca decandra, L. Poke, Garget weed.*
Euphorbia hypericifolia, L. Spurge.*
i" maculata, L. "
Acalypha Virginica, L. Three-seeded Mercury.
Croton argyranthemum, Mx. Indian Care-all.
Crotonopsis linearis, Mx. Indian Flax.*
Alternantha flavescens, Moq.
S Achyrantha, R. Br.
Rumex crispus, L. Dock.
Acetosella, L. Dock.
Polygonum Convolvulus, L. Bind weed.
Yucca filamentosa, L. Bear grass.
Borreria micrantha, T. & G.
Rubus villosus, Ait. Blackberry, Briarberry.*
trivialis, Mx. Dewberry.*
Schrankia uncinata, Willd. Sensitive Briar.
Mimosa strigillosa, T. & G. Tassel vine, Sensitive plant.
Phaseolus perennis, Walt. Wild Bean.
Desmodium molle, D C. Florida Clover, Beggar louse.*
Indigofera tinctoria, L. & I, Anil L. Indigo.
Ceanothus microphvllus, MX. Jersey te%.
Ampelopsis quinquefolia, Mr. Virginia Creeper.
Hypericum mutilum, L. St. John's wort.
Cyperus comprersoa. L. Goose grass.
divervens, Kunth. "
Kvllineia sesquiflor, Torr. Sweet Sedge.
Fimhristvlii, laxq, Vahl.
Trichplnstvlis aut.vnnanlis, Chapm.
Releria nli~nth-s, Mx. Nut rush.
Carex lx :fl-ra, Iam. SFde.
Alop'eIrns ern;enltus, L. Foxtail.
Sporohlus ju- cius, Kunth. Wire grass.*
Floridanus, Chapm. "
Indicus, Brown. Dropseed grass.
Aristida lanata, Poir. "
purpurascens, Poir. Poverty grass.
S virgata, Trin.
S dichotoma, Mx.
Eleusine JEgypticum, Willd. Crowfoot.*
Indica, Gaertn. Bull grass.*
Leptochloa mucronata, Kunth.
Eragrostis megastachya, Link.
S ciliaris, Link. Chicken grass.
87. Eragrostis capillaris, Nees. Witch grass.
88. pectinacea, Gray. *
89. Brownei, Kunth. Cock's foot grass.*
90. Paspalum Walteri, Schult.
91. distichum, L. Wet Bermuda.*
92. heve, Mx.
93. undulatum, Poir.
94. ciliatifolium, Mx. Prairie grass.*
95. obtusifolium, Radd. "
96. Panicum sanguinale, L. Crab grass.*
97. filiforme, L. *
98. hians, Ell.
99. anceps, L.
100. capillare, L.
101. scoparium, L.
102. dichotomum, L.
103. serotinum, Mx. Blanket grass.*
104. commutatum, Schult.
105. Setaria glauca, Beauv. Foxtail, Bottle grass.*
106. Andropogon scoparius, Mx. Broom grass, Broom sedge.*
107. Heteropogon melanocarpus, Trin. Beard grass.
108. Cynodon Dactylon, Pers. Bermuda grass.*
109. Paspalum platycaule, Chapm. Louisiana grass.*
110. Pteris aquilina, L. Brake.*
AGGRESSIVE OR TROUBLESOME WEEDS.
1. Triumfetta s-mitriloba, L.
2. Desmolium Floridanum, Chapm.
3. Galactia pilea, Ell.
4. Elliottii, NYtt.
5. Solidago tenuifolia, Pursh. Goldenrod.
6. Bideus leucantha, Wild.
7. I)omma Bhna nox, L. Moon flower.
8. Canna flaccida, Rosc. Indian Shot.
9. Commelyna communis, L. Spiderwort.
1. Nasturtium tanacetifolium, Hook & A.
2. Portulaca pilosa, L. Hairy Pursley.
3. Crotalaria Purshii, D C.
4. Chapmania Floridana, T. & G.
5. Gaura angustifolia, Mx.
6. Ludwigia virgata, Mx.
7. Melothria pendula, L.
8. Hvdrocotvle umbellata, L. Penny-wort.
9. Oldenlandia glomerata, Mx. Creeping Greenhead.
10. Melanthera hastata, Mx.
Helianthus littoralis, Chapm.
Gnaphalium purpureum, L. Cud weed.
Unicus lanceolatus, Hoffm.
Lactuca Canadensis, L. Wild Lettuce.
integrifolia, Bigel. Trumpet milk-weed.
Utricularia subulata, L. Bladder Leaf.
Bcoparia dulis, L.
Lippia lanceolata, Mx. Fog fruit.
Hyptis radiata, Willd.
Solanum gracile, Link.
Physalis pubescens, L. Ground Cherry.
Datura tatula, L. Jimson weed.
Acnida australis, Gray. Water Hemp.
Polypremum procumbens, L.
Iresene celosioides, Ell.
Euphorbia Helioscopio, L. Spurge.
Jatropha urens, var. stimulosa, Mull. Spurge nettle.
Tradescantia rose, Vent.
Cyperus microdontus, Low. Sedge.
S strigosus, L.
Elevcharis capitata, R. Br.
Fimbrystylis autumnalis, R. & S.
Scirpus stenophyllus, Ell. Bulrush.
Scleria laxa, Torr. Nut sedge.
Gyrunopogon racemosus, Beauv.
Chloris petrma, Ell.
Paspalum digitaria, Poir. Crab grass.
Panicum gibbum, E1L.
Setaria viridis, Beauv. Wild Timothy.
Andropogon tener, Kunth.
Sida cordifolia, L. Tea weed.
Crotalaria incana, D C. Rattle pod.
Jussima erecta, L.
Bcerhaavia erecta, L.
Acalypha persimilis. Simp.
These lists may serve somewhat as an index to the quality of soil
for immigrants, as the Portulacca, Helenium, Ceanothus, Vernonia,
Datura, Desmodium, Abutilon and Xanthium, will only thrive in fer-
tile soil, and rarely occur elsewhere, while the Diodia, Rumex, Aris-
tida, Carex, Linaria and Fraelichia, are fully as sure indications of
sterile or worn-out land.
1 wish, especially, to call the attention of our planters to the list of
aggressive weeds, most of which have barely a footing in the State, but
are spreading rapidly, and eventually will become formidable. It
would certainly be a misfortune beyond measure, if the Nut grass
should ever cover our best lands with its almost ineradicable shoots, or
the Nettle with its stinging leaves, the Careless weed with its fragile
thorns, or the Ipomea tamnifolia with its wiry vines should invade our
gardens and groves.
The Nut grass is creeping in from the West, Dog fennel (Maruta)
has reached Tallahassee in its southward march.
The Paraguay bur, introduced at Augusta, Georgia, in wool
brought from Paraguay, some twenty years ago, has now spread over
Florida, and is as far south as Bronson. The Urena is a Cuban plant,
but has migrated as far north as Gainesville, Fla.
The Urtica (Nettle), Abutilon (Butterprint), Polygonum (Knot-
weed), Verbesina (Dogweed), Leonotis (Prickly Mint), Thistle (Cir-
sium), Fireweed (Erechthites), and Spurge (Euphorbia), are traveling
southward, the Aplopappus is extending from Tampa.
I have no doubt further investigation will show the progress of
many new weeds from the older States, and possibly from the West
Indies; in fact, it is more than probable, that eventually as the land
is opened up, cultivated and fertilized, Florida will be the common
resort of all the tramp plants of the world, attracted, like people,
by the genial climate, and mellow soil.
It behooves our farmers, therefore, to be vigilant in repelling these
invaders as soon as they appear.
A few of the weeds have a medicinal value, that in some measure
tends to reduce their general bad character, and often in domestic
practice and mild cases, extemporaneous infusions or decoctions have
given the needed relief.
The Bidens, Xanthium, Ambrosia and Eupatorium are tonics;
the Sesuvium, Oxalis, Rumex, Urtica, (Enothera and Froelichia are
diuretic; the Cassias, Ipomea, Quamoclit and Pyrrhopappus are laxative.
The Blackroot is sedative and diaphoretic; the Vernonia is stimu-
lant and tonic; the Ceanothus, Croton and Polygonum are astringent.
The Poke is a very valuable remedy in Garget; the Croton is
almost a specific in the colic of horses; the Leonotis, Monarda, Dau-
cus, Sisymbrium and Gnaphalium are fair diaphoretics, while the
Ambrosia and Chenopodium act as fine tonics for all kinds of stock.
As honey-producing plants, the Partridge pea, Urena and the
Tea weeds are quite valuable, and bees find much nectar in the blooms
of the Cirsium, Heliophytum, Portulaca, Sisymbrium, Diodia, Cap-
sella, Opuntia, Leonotis and Passiflora. The list of bee plants" is
very incomplete and needs revision.
I include, very reluctantly, the Florida Clover (Desmodium
molle) in the list of weeds. It is by far the best green forage plant
we have at'present, and the cow, sheep, goat, hog or horse that will not
recuperate in a field of this weed, is past help from other food. As an
improver of soil it is of the greatest value in Florida, and its habit of
not appearing until the laying by of the corn crop, :s unique, entitling
it to a front rank as a beneficial plant. Still, once in a field, it is
there to stay, and its tenacious pods at times are very troublesome.
The Crowfoot, Bullgrass, Crabgrass, Bermuda grass and the Pas-
palums are all classed as weeds, and yet, with little effort, the best of
dry forage can be made from these grasses.
Some recent experiments with the Paspalum platycaule (Louisiana
grass) indicates that in it there is a fair prospect for the needed pasture
grass for Florida. It is a perennial, very thrifty, stands well both
drought and rain, is a native grass, and is as nutritious as the best
pasture grasses of the North. It deserves an extended trial in all
sections of the State.
The Eragrostis Brownei, with a little care and the use of a potassic
fertilizer, makes a very pretty lawn for the summer, and is well liked
Some thousands of acres in Florida, generally around lakes and
ponds, are covered with a dense growth of perennial grasses, mostly
Paspalum distichum, P. ciliatifolium, P. obtusifolium and P. platy-
caule, rarely seeding, and forming a nearly perfect sward.
Around the taller tufts of the Paspalums the dainty, velvety
Panicum serotinum and the Eragrostis Brownei form a soft, carpet-
like growth, much relished by sheep and goats, while the stouter
grasses afford fine pasturage for other stock.
Old fields, not too worn, soon are overrun with Rumox Engel-
mannii, Gerardia divaricata, Ambrosias, S .ndspurs, E agrostis capil-
laris and the Frcelichia, weeds that eventually give place t) Foxtails
and the Brooms-dge
Very sterile land is finally covered with the Aristidas and Carices.
It is curious to note that it takes ab >ui ten veas f r the Brnomsedge
to displace 1he other weeds, except, G`ar-iias and Blackberries,
and that the Wire grasses require at least wenty five years to conquer
all other grow hs.
Very few persons have any idea of the number of weeds found
on an acre or the labor involved in their removal. In the early
part of the year, I rem >ved and counted the separate plants
in an average piece of weedy ground, the plat containing
seventy-two square feet, 1 605th of an acre. To my surprise, I found
ten species and 808 plants; 204 Heleniums, 316 Diodias and 124
Andropogons; the remainder being Partridge peas; Maypops, Horse-
mints, Ragweeds, Sandapurs, Crabgrass and Horse-nettles. This would
be at the rate of 484 000 weeds on an acre. Later on, in August, I
again examined the plat, finding fourteen species, and at the rate of
322,500 plants on an acre. The Sandspurs, Crabgrass, Diodias and
Ragweeds were in the lead, with the addition to the plants named
before, of Jerusalem oaks, Gnaphaliums, Gerardias and CEnotheras.
All these were removed, and in October the plat was again examined;
the result was the finding of six species, Sandspurs, Ragweeds Diodias,
Maypops, Frelichias and Broomsedge, ana at the rate of 242 000 plants
on an acre. These were removed, and the last count in December
gave 187,550 plants, Linarias, Gnaphaliums, Sandspurs and the Red
weed. The labor required to remove these useless plants by the hoe,
in a cotton field, is enormous. Allowing seventy rows to the acre, one
foot of surface to be hoed the length of each row, four hoeinsts during
the season, and four strokes to each square foot, gives 235,200 strokes
of the hoe to each acre, and if the land is flat hoed all over, it
takes at least 174,240 strokes to remove the weeds. Comment is hardly
needed, as the figures fully justify the inference that clean culture is
essential to success in farming in this country.
The seeding capacity of some weeds is enormous. A fully
developed Sida will ripen during the season at least 400 seeds, each
equipped with two hooks which easily catch onto animals or people
and thus are scattered broadcast. An Urena averages 1,000 seeds, the
Florida clover about 600 seeds, the Careless weed 1,000 seeds, the
Cocklebur usually 200. the first generation of Ragweeds 1,000 seeds,
the second about 100 seeds to the plant. Jerusalem oaks ripen from
6,000 to 10,000 seeds in a crop, but fortunately for us, they are the food
of a tiny beetle and some of our birds also relish the seed. None of
these compare with the Sauds:urs. One Sandspur coming into bloom
in January, will easily ripeo 100 seeds rith almost the certainty that
there will b- 10 000 plaits by August, and a million in November,
ripening 100 000,000 seeds for an early start the next year.
Rating weeds in order of badness, I would give the Sandspurs the
first place. They are bitter grasses eaten only as a last resort by
cattle, and all other weeds in the State combined do not cause as much
pain, profanity and danger to life, as these worthless grasses Maiden
cine follows a long distance in the rear. This is also a bitter grass
hard to eradicate, but cut wien it is young, makes a tolerable hay.
Nut grass ranks third, Aun, once well established in a field, usually out-
lives the ow;ier. Tea w. eds :;re fourth, with roots apparently clinched
on the other side of the world; then the Maypop, almost a rival of the
Sixth, the Diodia. When young this weed presents its leaves to
the four cardinal points of the compass, whence the name I have given
it. Other weeds rank in about the following order: Ragweed. Care-
less weed, Crabgrass, Carrot, Ipomea, Urena, Partridge pea, Fennel,
Isopappus, Paraguay bur, Prickly mint, Horse nettle, Bermuda grass.
A few weeds enrich the soil. The roots decay or the leaves fall in suf-
ficient quantities to form some humus. The Richardsonia, Cockle-bur,
Japan clover and Florida clover are certainly valuable in this
respect, but most of the plants in these lists produce neither food, forage
nor money crops; they are plants out of place, thieves of time, labor
The practical inference is to prevent the weeds from seeding. A
crop of oats, followed by peas, and they by several plowings in the
late fall, will rid most fields of the usual grasses and annuals. A flock
of sheep or goats aid the clearing out of nearly all briars and peren-
nials. The Benne plant (Sesamum), in drills, east and west, will almost
alone extirpate the Sandspur.
In general it is best to occupy the ground with a succession of
hoed crops, and be vigilant in noting the first appearance of weeds,
then destroy them before they bloom.
J. C. NEAL, M. D., Botanist.
ANNUAL REPORT OF THE FLORIDA EXPERIMENT
LAKE CITY, January 1, 1890.
To His Excellency, Francis P. Fleming, Governor of Florida:
SIR-I have the honor to submit the following as the report of
the operations of the Florida Experiment Station, and the Teasurer's
report, in obedience to the provisions of the act constituting said
Station, approved by the President of the United States of America
March 2, 1889. I am, your Excellency, yours obediently,
JAMES P. DEPASS, Director.
For reasons enumerated in the last Annual Report, the Florida
Experiment Station has not yet arrived at that point where good
results can be justly expected of it, and, in the main, during the last
year, it has steadily confined its work to the preparation of land and
arranging for the future. The necessary labor to this end has in-
curred much expense. Twenty acres of heavy hammock land have
been freed from stumps, roots and logs; fifteen additional acres of
dense timber have been felled, the logs and limbs piled, and some of
the stumps removed; and six acres, that last year were boggy and
useless, have been underdrained, and si'on will be available for
A large amount of new fencing has been necessary, and as soon
as possible a substantial wire netting will replace some old and decay-
ing wooden fences.
Other needed improvements have been made in repairs to the
farm buildings-the addition of sheds, stalls and some outhouses.
Improved labor-saving machinery for planting and harvesting
crops has beeu purchased when needed, and also a small steam-engine
to supply the power required.
A small silo was built during the summer of cheap materials and
very roughly. This was filled with corn-fodder, pea-vines and grasses,
packed tightly without cutting and heavily weighted. It has not yet
been opened. This is an experiment which, if successful, will be a
guide to further efforts in the direction of cheap forage. If it is a
failure, it may show how and where are deficiencies or errors to avoid
in the future.
In the Experiment orchard are sixty varieties of peaches, with
other fruits; and as fast as possible all the varieties of fruit trees suit-
able to this section will be placed on trial. Fifty varieties of grapes
are in the vineyard, embracing all kinds supposed to be of value in
The experiments upon most crops were rendered almost or com-
plete failures by the protracted drought, extending from April 30 to
May 28. During this period the average temperature was 72' Fah-
renheit; not a drop of rain and a brisk breeze. These unusual com-
plications completely destroyed forage crops, strawberries and the
Experiment garden, and so damaged the tobacco, rice, oat and corn
experiments as to invalidate any conclusion that might be made for
them. For the same reasons the experiments with crrn and sugar-corn
are of no value, except to suggest some directions for the future man-
agement of these crops.
A large number of young fruit trees and varieties of forage and
vegetable seeds have been distributed to the different sections of the
State for testing as to availability and adaptability to various soils, and
some study has been made of Florida soils with a view of introducing
new forage and food plants. A collection of grass seeds from the south
of Europe has been procured, and experiments on the line of acclimat-
ing these forage plants will be tried the coming year.
The live stock on the farm now consists of a Jersey bull and four
Jersey cows, a Holstein-Friesan bull and cow, four Cotswold and two
Southdown sheep, a Hambletonian stallion and mare, two draught
horses and two mules.
A number of improved chickens, turkeys, geese and ducks will
be added as soon as the yards now in preparation are ready.
It is the intention of the Station to improve the live stock of
Florida as far as possible by the use of the Station equipment.
Sub-experiment stations have been located at Fort Myers, Ocala
and DeFuniak, but have not become operative, except at DeFuniak.
During the year all letters relating to his department have been
answered by the Botanist and Entomologist.
A collection of injurious insects has been begun, and some progress
made in a study of the habits of tobacco insects. It has been deemed
advisable, however, to continue this investigation during the coming
year before publication.
A botanical collection is being prepared, especially of the grasses
of Florida. The results of a preliminary study of weeds is hereby
As soon Ps the Experiment farm is in condition, we hope to be
able to render effective service to the State.
JAMES P. DEPASS, Director.
LAKE CITY, December 19, 1889.
Rev. James P. DePass, Director Florida Agricultural Experiment
SIR-A brief summary of the work of the chemical department
of the Station for the year 1889 is herewith respectfully submitted: .
Eleven specimens of what were thought: by the senders to be
phosphate rocks have been analyzed. Only four of them proved to he
of any value as phosphates. They contained, respectively, 41.30,
20.00, 13.20 and 9.59 per cent. of phosphoric acid-equivalent to
88.19, 43.95, 28.71 and 20.82 per cent. of phosphate of lime. The
South Carolina rock contains 55 to 61 per cent. of phosphate of lime.
The seven remaining specimens were found to contain from 21
per cent. down to scarcely more than a trace of phosphate. They
were, in fact, merely limestone, containing from 30 to 95 per cent. of
carbonate of lime, with an admixture of sand.
NOTE.-Since writing the above, the analysis of eight specimens
from Ocala (presumably from the Dunnellon section) have been
finished. One specimen contained 95 per cent. of sand and no phos-
phate. The others were very rich, ranging from 30 to 37 per cent.,
and averaging 34 per cent. of phosphoric acid. This is equivalent to
65 (lowest), 81 (highest) and 75 (average)'per cent. of phosphate of
Fossil remains are generally easy to be recognized, owing to their
resemblances to bones or tusks. Tiey are rich in phosphate, and,
where found in quantity, are very valuable. Three specimens analyzed
at the Statiin contained 49 06 to 78.50 per cent. of phosphate of lime.
Limestone is found in abundance in many parts of the State, and
the manufacture of lime could doubtless be profitably engaged in to
much greater extent than is at present the case. The stone is of a
porous, loose texture, and crumbles easily. The following table will
give an idea of the composition of Florida limestone. In most cases
only the lime and sand were determined:
5s 57 63 a64 SG 87 88 94
Moisture at 2120........................ 2 00 1 70 0.41 0 78;
Oxides of Iron and Aluminum...... i7 40 1 12 0 96
Lime(CaO)...... .......... ........... 53.28 19.20 29 52 43 76 31.68 43.60 18 80 54 60
Magnesia ........ ... ................ 0 64 0 36 17 96 0 40,
Sulphuric Acid.... .. ............... 0 0 6 0.33 0 25
Phosphoric Acid.................. .... 0.09 2.88 0.06 0 05 0. 1 14 1.0 0 20
Sand ........... ....... ..... 018 45 13 677 18.95 6 21 15.07 43 08 0.20
A perfectly pure limestone (seldom or never met with in nature)
can contain only 56 per cent. of lime.
Several samples of ground oyster shells have been sent us with
inquiry as to their value as fertilizer. Besides a small admixture of
sand, they contain 50 to 52 per cent. of lime (equivalent to 90 to 93
per cent. of carbonate of lime). 0.13 per cent. of phosphoric ccid, and
0.16 per cent. of potash. A s iimple of shells, said to be ground up
with young oysters, contained 0.27 per cent. of phosphoric acid, 0 20
per cent. of potash, and 90 per cent. of carbonate of lime. This
sample showed so little organic matter that it was not thought worth
while to determine the small per cent. of ammonia t'iat could he pres-
eat. Shells have little or no manurial value beyond what is due to their
contents of lime; and as to grinding up young oysters, it would
seem to be a very extravagant procedure, if they are at all likely to
grow to marketable size.
A sample of lime, made from oyster shells, was found to contain
a large per cent. of carbonate. This was due to imperfect burning,
and detracts greatly from its value as a building material.
Two samples of gypsum have been analyzed. They contained
77.45 and 74 per cent. of sulphate of iime. The papers of the State
have had a good deal to say of gypsum. Its significance as a fertil-
izer has been treated of in Bulletin No. 6.
The subject of muck was taken up last summer, and is fully
treated in Bulletin No. 7. Eighteen to twenty samples from various
parts of the State have been analyzed. By referring to Bulletin No.
7 it will be seen that a hundred pounds of Florida muck contain
from one-half to three pounds of ammonia, from less than one-sixth to
four-fifths of a pound of potash, and from less than an ounce to three-
fourths of a pound of phosphoric acid. Barnyard manure contain,,
per hundred, about one-half to one pound of ammonia, five ounces to
seven-tenths of a pound of potush, and one fifth to one-half of a
pound of phosphoric acid. Frmn a chemical standpoint, therefore, a
good quality of muck is not inf ri. r to barnyard manure. But, as Is
well known, the plant-food in muck is in a much less available form
than that in manure; hence the necessity of weathering and com pistin;,
muck, in regard to which matter see the Bulletin referred to above.
Below are given the analyses of nine samples of fertilizers, sent
from different parts of the State. The estimate of value per ton is at
the rate of 6 cents a pound for available phosphoric acid, 15 cents a
pound for ammonia, and five cents a pound for potash. These are
the South Carolina rates for the season of 1888-89, are "based on the
cash v lues of the single ton at Charleston, and do not include the
cost of transportation:"
Total Phosphoric Acid....... 16.5 9.34i 6.15 14.00 13.41 11.72! 13.48 11.74 12.66
Available Phosphoric Acid.... 12.2 4.99 ... 6.16 7.79 9.22 2.42 9.18 8.88
Potash ................... 0.66 1.97 4.20 390 3.85 7.48 1.78 2.00
Ammonia............ 1.54 10.60 2.53 3.40 8.31 2.76 ..... 3.14 5.95
Value per ton ...... .. $19.95 37.8 21.79 23.18 $23.19 $10.38 $22.22 480.50
KAINIT AND ASHES,
The following are analyses of hainit, Georgia, Florida and Can-
12 13 26 95 96 97 55 25 80
Potash ..................... 11.10 12.74 2.44 2.20 4.20 4.00 2.93 2.84 13.39
Total Phosphoric Acid ... 1. .... .... .... 2.08 4.40 3.48
Lim e........... ....... ... .... 36. .... 24.72 36.20 13.04
Value per ton ................ $11.10 $12.741.$ 5.50 $2.20 4.0 $ 4.Ohl 5.42 $ 8.12$17.56
The phosphoric acid in 95, 96, '7 was nt determined, but would
be about 1.85 per cent. It is th pirtash mainly that decides the value
of ashes. Ncs. 12 and 13 are ,a'..it ; 26, 95, 96, 97, Canada hard-
wood ashes (said to be unleached); 55, (;Gorgia hard-wood ashes; 25,
the ash of Florida hickory, anr 80 f f Florida moss. Eighty-seven
analyses of Canada ashes, made at the Massachusetts Experiment
Station, gave 10 24 as the highest. 2.49 as the lowest, and 5.50 as the
average per cent. of potash ; 3.99. 0.2, and 1 85 as the highest, low-
est, and average per cent. of phosphoric acid; 50.89, 18.00, and
34.44 as the highest, lowest, and average per cent. of lime. In the
estimate of value phosphoric acid is rated at 6 cents, which is some-
what too high, as the acid here nd -r consideration is the total and
not the available. About $2 20 should he added to the value of 95,
96, and 97 each, for their pr fitirhle ontents of phosphoric acid.
Two samples, one from D ls i-r, Flrida, and designated "bat
guano," the other from Charlotte r arb,,r and designated as "dirt from
a bird roiokery," show 5.12 and 8 20 per cent. of phosphoric acid, and
0.55 and 0 19 per cent. of potash r,.sprctively. The "bat guano" was
said to have been taken from a cave where there is a considerable de-
posit. It contained 56 per cent. of organic matter. Both samples
are quite valuable as fertilizers.
Thirteen or fourteen samples oif aat-r have been analyzed, either
completely or tested as to ihiir healthfulness. There is nothing of
Special interest to be reported in regard to them, except the remark-
able purity, shown by water from a driven well located in the midst of
filthy surroundings. Attention is called to this fact, in order to em-
phasize the superiority of the driven well, as to purity of water, over
the old-fashioned dug well. It is amazing that people will persist in
the use of open wells, oftener lined with boards than bricks, veritable
breeders of musquitoes, frogs and fever-when a driven well, even if
nut over 20 to 25 feet deep, is infinitely superior and equally cheap, if
It is frequently asserted that potash is par excellence the element
of plant-food lacking in Florida soil, and special stress is laid on the
importance of supplying that element as though other elements could
take care of themselves. The number of soils (nine) analyzed do not
warrant the drawing of any broad general conclusions-certainly no
such one as the above. While some of the soils analyzed are abun-
dantly rich in all the constituents of plant fiod. a nm.jority show a low
per cent., not only of potash but of phosphates also. Deep, sandy
soils, however, do not need to have as high per cent. of plant food as
clay soils. One of our analyses, that of a virgin hammock, showed a
very low per cent. of potash and of phosphoric acid-much lower
than the minimum usually considered consistent with fertility. Neve-
theless, this hammock is covered with a luxuriant growth of vegetation.
As to fertilizing Florida soil, the true method, I believe, is first of all
to keep the soil abundantly supplied with vegetable matter (muck,
peavines, barnyard manure, etc). In this way ammonia, which is by
far the most costly constituent of plant-food, can be largely supplied,
and the necessity of resorting to expensive ammoniated fertilizers, to
considerable extent, obviated. Where muck is convenient and of
good quality, it is especially to be recommended. But having at-
tended to this great need (organic matter) in our sandy soil, not only
potash, but phosphates also, should be supplied.
A number of Florida grasses have been analyzed, and show some
points of great interest; but work in this line has scarcely begun. The
analyses thus far made need to be re-enforced by others.
J. M. PICKELL, Ch'emist.