Front Cover

Group Title: Bulletin. n.s
Title: Legume feed crops grown in Florida
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/UF00015000/00001
 Material Information
Title: Legume feed crops grown in Florida
Series Title: Bulletin. n.s
Physical Description: 68 p. : ill. ; 22 cm.
Language: English
Creator: Scott, John M ( John Marcus )
Florida -- Dept. of Agriculture
Publisher: State of Florida, Dept. of Agriculture.
Place of Publication: Tallahassee Fla
Publication Date: 1930
Subject: Field crops -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Forage plants -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Legumes -- Florida   ( lcsh )
Genre: government publication (state, provincial, terriorial, dependent)   ( marcgt )
non-fiction   ( marcgt )
Statement of Responsibility: by John M. Scott.
General Note: Cover title.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: UF00015000
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: ltqf - AAA7394
ltuf - AME9189
oclc - 41254419
alephbibnum - 002443968

Table of Contents
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Full Text
r 7




V O 2-,

State of Florida
Department of Agriculture
NATHAN MAYO, Commissioner


Nathan Mayo, Commissioner of Agriculture. .Tallahassee
T. J. Brooks, Director, Bureau of Immigration Tallahassee
Phil. S. Taylor, Supervising Inspector ....... Tallahassee
John M. Scott, Agricultural Editor.......... Gainesville


The quality of the livestock produced in a community
will depend to a large extent upon the legume crops that
can be grown. Of course legume feed crops can be
shipped in from other sections but the cost of transporta-
tion adds greatly to the expense of raising livestock.
Wherever these crops can be grown successfully, all
classes of livestock can be produced more economically
and at the same time our soils will be improved by the
growing of these crops.
Florida farmers, if they choose the proper types of soil,
can grow as great a variety, if not more, of legume feed
crops than farmers in many other states.
As the acreage of these legumes is increased in the
State, so will the quality of our livestock be improved.
The productivity of our soils should be increased as a
result of growing these various legume crops.
This bulletin gives the results of experiments that show
the feeding value of some of these legumes and also the
increased yield that it is possible to obtain from crops
following some of these good legumes.
Some of the crops discussed may be new to some of the
readers of this bulletin, therefore directions for planting,
cultivating and harvesting have been given.

Legume lFee Crops Grown in


Stizolobium deeringianum 'Bort
T HE velvet bean has been known and grown in Flor-
ida for nearly fifty years, and during the last thirty
years it has been grown on a commercial scale. From
about 1912 to 1916a' large acreage was grown for seed
production, as there was considerable demand for seed
in Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia, and South Carolina at
that time. Since then farmers in the above Southern
States have to a large extent produced their own seed.
During the past ten years a considerable amount of
velvet beans have been used in mixed dairy feeds, but at
the present time nearly the entire crop is grown as a soil
improving crop or as feed to be grazed by cattle during
late fall and winter.
The following is a botanical description of the plant
by Katherine Stephens Bort, taken from Bulletin 141 of
the Bureau of Plant Industry, United States Department
of Agriculture.
"Stizolobium deeringianum Bort.-An annual, her-
baceous, climging vine sometimes 20 meters in length
when growing on supports, and even on the ground at-
taining a length of from 2 to 6 meters, bearing long, pen-
dent racemes of purple flowers which produce dark,
velvety pods 5 or 6 centimeters long. Stems rather slen-
der, terete, sparsely pubescent, with white appressed
hairs, especially on the ridges. Petioles equalling or ex-
ceeding the leaflets, pubescent like the steam, and con-
tinued for 2 to 4 centimeters beyond the lateral leaflets;
stipules subulate, pubescent, about 1 centimeter long;
stipels similar but smaller; petiolules about 5 millimeters
long, stout, very pubescent. Leaflets rhomboid-ovate,
the lateral ones oblique, membranaceous, acuminate-
cuspidate, 5 to 15 centimeters long, about half as broad,
sparsely pubescent above, especially on the veins, more
densely pubescent beneath, the white hairs closely ap-
pressed. Inflorescence a raceme or thyrsus 15 to 30 cen-
timeters long, pendent, bearing 5 to 30 flowers, usually
about 12; rachis like the stem, but more pubescent;
flowers borne singly or in twos or threes on short lateral


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Fig. 1.-Where velvet beans are and can be grown, (Courtesy, U. S. D. A.)

branchlets. Bracts lanceolate-subulate, very pubescent,
early fugacious. Calyx pubescent within and without
with short, white appressed hairs, 2-lipped, the upper
lip broadly triangular, the lower lip 3-cleft, the lobes
triangular-subulate, the middle one longest; stinging
hairs absent. Corolla dark purple, 3 to 4 centimeters
long; standard less than half the length of the keel,
darker than the rest of the flower; wings slightly shorter
than the keel, rather broad, oblanceolate-oblong, obtuse;
keel straight to near the tip, where it curves sharply up-
ward, the tip firm and acute; anthers of two sorts alter-
nately long and short, the latter on much broader fila-
ments; ovary linear, pubescent; style filiform, pubes-
cent nearly to the tip; stigma small. Pods when mature
5 to 6 centimeters long, turgid, densely covered with a
soft, nearly black, velvety pubescence without stinging
hairs; valves with 1 or 2 or sometimes 3 obscure longi-
tudional ridges. Seeds 3 to 5 in each pod, subglobose,
marbled and speckled with brown or black, and some-
times both, on ash-gray ground color (though pure gray
and, it is said, pure black occur rarely), 1 to 1.5 centi-
meters in diameter. Hilum white, oblong-crateriform,
less than one-half the length of the seed."
The velvet bean must necessarily be classed as a tropi-
cal and semi-tropical plant. For the production of the
maximum vine growth and seed production it requires a
long growing season. The early maturing kinds may
mature in 120 days and the later maturing varieties re-
quire as much as 170 or 180 days. However, the late
maturing varieties continue growth in the fall until killed
by frost.
All varieties of the velvet bean can be grown in all
parts of Florida, southern parts of South Carolina, Geor-
gia, Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana and Texas. The
early maturing varieties may be grown as far north as
North Carolina, Tennessee, Arkansas and Oklahoma.
The growth of vines and seed produced in these northern
localities may or may not be entirely satisfactory, this will
depend very largely on climatic conditions. If good grow-
ing conditions continue late in the fall, it will mean that
the crop will have a much better chance to mature a
good crop of seed. An early frost, of course, would stop
all growth.
A large number of varieties of velvet beans have been
grown in Florida during the past fifteen or twenty years.
Some of these varieties have been introduced from for-

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.g a ,

Fig. .-Pod and seeds of Florida velvet bean, natural size. (Courtesy Florida Agricultural Experiment Station.)
Fig. 2.-o tdseso lrdtvle en ~u~lsz.(oreyFoi Arclua xeimetSaio.

eign countries by the United States Department of Agri-
culture in Washington, D. C. Others have been the re-
sult of breeding work carried on by the Florida Agricul-
tural Experiment Station and the United States Depart-
ment of Agriculture, Washington, D. C.
The following is a brief description of some of the more
important varieties as they are described in the Florida
Agricultural Experiment Station Bulletin No. 152.

Fig. 3.-Pod and seeds of Chinese velvet bean, natural size. (Courtesy
Florida Agricultural Experiment Station.)
The Florida velvet bean, Stizolobium deeringianum
(Bort), makes a rank growth of vines and leaves and re-
quires about 175 to 190 days to mature. When the vines
have opportunity to climb they may attain a length of
30 or 40 feet. The leaves are large and smooth, but
sparsely pubescent. The flowers are purple and are
borne on long pendant racemes.
The seed pods (Fig. 2) are black in color and contain

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Fig. 4.-Pod and seeds of Georgia or Early Speckled velvet bean, natural size. (Courtesy Florida Agricultural
Experiment Station,)


3 to 5 seeds. The mature pods are from 2 to 3 inches in
length. The seed are nearly round in shape. They are
speckled with brown or black, sometimes both, on an
ash-gray ground color. Frequently white or gray seeds
appear and sometimes black seeds are produced.
The Chinese velvet bean, Stizolobium niveum var. (?),
was introduced from Tehwa, China. One seed of this
bean was sent to the Florida Agricultural Experiment
Station by Prof. C. V. Piper under S. P. I. 26185, and
planted in 1910.
The Chinese differs from the Florida velvet bean in
many respects. The seed pods and the covering of the
pods resemble the Lyon velvet bean more than those of
any variety. The blackish hulls or pods are covered with
a fine, appressed down or whitish hairs. This downy
covering of whitish hairs gives an ashy gray appearance
to the ripe pods. The seed pods of the Chinese velvet
bean (Fig. 3) are about 4 inches in length.
The Chinese velvet bean makes a ranker growth of
vines and leaves than any other variety of velvet beans
described in this bulletin. It matures about two or three
weeks earlier than the Florida velvet bean, but not quite
as early as the Osceola. The seeds of this variety are
larger than those of any other variety of velvet beans.
They are flat in shape, and are of whitish gray color.
The flower color is white.
The Georgia or Early Speckled velvet bean is one of
the earliest maturing varieties of velvet beans. From the
best information available, this variety is a sport from the
old Florida velvet bean. It was first found in Georgia,
hence the name. Just who discovered this variety is dif-
ficult to state.
The Georgia or Early Speckled velvet bean is exactly
like the Florida velvet except that it does not produce as
rank a growth of vines and leaves. The Georgia ma-
tures in about 120 days, or in the same length of time
as the Wakulla and Yokohama velvet beans.
It is impossible to distinguish between the flowers, pods
and seed of the Georgia or Early speckled velvet bean
(Fig. 4) and those of the Florida.
The Osceola velvet bean is a hybrid produced by cross-
ing the Florida and the Lyon velvet beans. This cross
was first made in 1908 by R. Y. Winters. He pollenated

Florida velvet bean flowers with pollen from the Lyon
velvet bean.
It matures earlier than either of its parents, the period
required being from 140 to 150 days. The Osceola makes
more of a vine and leaf growth than does the Wakulla,
but not as much as the Florida and Chinese.
The mature pods of the Osceola (Fig. 5) are much
longer than those of the Wakulla, or any of the other
varieties of velvet beans, being from 4.5 to 5 inches long.
Some pods may even exceed this length. As a rule the
pods contain from five to seven seeds. The pods are
covered with a soft brownish-black velvet or wool of
flat and twisted hairs, very similar to that found on the
Florida velvet beans.

Fig. 5.-Pod and seeds of Osceola velvet bean, natural size. (Courtesy
Florida Agricultural Experiment Station.)
The seeds of the Osceola are larger than those of the
Florida velvet, and are slightly flat in shape. In color
they are about the same as those of the Florida velvet.


Flower color of this variety is white.
The chief advantage of this bean is that it matures
earlier than the Florida velvet, hence is seldom attacked
by caterpillars.
There are many uses to which this important legume
can be put. It was first, and occasional still is, used
for growing on trellises and screens for covering unsight-
ly places. For this purpose it is one of the best annual
vines for Florida, as it makes a quick, rank growth.
It may also be grown as a soil improving crop as dis-
cussed in detail in Bulletin No. 18, New Series, Florida
State Department of Agriculture, Tallahassee, Florida.
Send for a copy, if interested. They will be sent free
as long as the supply lasts.
The velvet bean is one of the best, if not the best, le-
gumes for Florida. Being a legume, its value as a for-
age crop is.,particularly important. Any legume makes
a better quality of feed than a non-legume. The velvet
bean is not used as a green grazing crop, but is used al-
most entirely as a winter grazing crop for cattle and
hogs. The velvet bean matures its crop of seed during
October and November. The crop is usually grazed by
cattle and hogs during December and January, or until
the fields are completely grazed.
The results obtained by grazing velvet bean fields with
beef cattle have been quite satisfactory. Animals grazed
have made satisfactory gains in weight and at the same
time produced a good quality of beef. Many dairymen
report good results in milk production when the cows
are allowed to graze on velvet beans.
In many experiments the velvet beans have been har-
vested. After harvesting the beans are fed in the pods
just as they come from the field. In other cases they
are ground, pods and beans together, and fed as velvet
bean feed meal. In a few cases the beans are shelled
and then ground and fed as velvet bean meal. In some
instances the beans in the pod are soaked in water for
from ten to twenty-four hours before feeding.
Feeding the beans dry in the pods has, in a great many
instances, given satisfactory results. Whenever velvet
beans are to be used in a mixed feed, such as a dairy feed,
it is necessary that they be ground.

-* *?*

,ne v bns rng on r r rd r r r nt S --, tatin.

Fig. 6.-Chinese velvet beans growing on trellises. (Courtesy Florida Agricultural Experiment Station.)



The results of an experiment conducted by the Florida
Agricultural Experiment Station and reported in Station
Bulletin No. 96 should be of interest to those who want
detailed information on growing velvet beans as a feed
for beef production. In a steer feeding experiment last-
ing 84 days the following results-were obtained.


Lot I
Corn ........................ 10.50
Cottonseed meal ............ 3.75
Crab-grass hay ............. 13.50
Sorghum silage ............ ...
Cottonseed hulls ...............
Velvet beans in pod ..............
Nutritive ratio .......... 1:6

Lot II Lot III Lot IV
Pounds Pounds Pounds
6.00 8.00
5.00 .... 6.50







* Florida Experiment Station Bulletin No. 96, p. 32.

(Four steers in each lot.)

Weight at beginning of test
Weight at end of test .....
Total gain ...............
Average gain per head ....
Average daily gain per head
Average daily gain per 100
lbs. live weight.......
Pounds feed for one pound
of gain ..............
* Florida Experiment Statio

Lot I Lot II
Pounds Pounds
2,920 2,891
3,788 3,782
868 891
217 225.25
2.583 2.681


Lot IV

3.538 3.712 4.147 2.576
10.21 15.883 9.604 13.103
n Bulletin No. 96.

These tables show that the steers fed corn and velvet
beans made the best gains and that it required less feed to
make one pound of gain than with any of the other com-
binations of feed tried in this experiment.
The gains produced are considered very good.
The Alabama Agricultural Experiment Station has
conducted feeding experiments with velvet beans in com-
parison with cottonseed meal for beef production. In one
test reported 40 steers averaging 584 pounds were used.
These were divided into two lots of 20 steers in each lot.
The feeding test extended over a period of 97 days.


Steers in Lot I were fed cottonseed meal and corn sil-
age. Steers in Lot II were fed velvet beans in the pod
and corn silage.
The steers fed cottonseed meal and corn silage made
an average daily gain of 1.6 pounds per head. While the
steers fed velvet beans in the pod and corn silage made
an average daily gain of 1.5 pounds per head.
The difference in the cost of producing one hundred
pounds of gain in weight was $0.97 in favor of the velvet
bean ration.
In another feeding experiment conducted by the Ala-
bama Agricultural Experiment Station, steers were fed
velvet beans in the pod and corn silage in comparison
with cottonseed meal and corn silage. Fifteen steers
were used in each lot and the feeding experiment extend-
ed over a period of 119 days. The velvet bean and corn
silage ration produced an average daily gain per head
of 1.6 pounds and the cottonseed meal and corn silage
ration produced an average daily gain of 1.55 pounds
per head.
These two experiments conducted by the Alabama
Agricultural Experiment Station show quite clearly the
value of the velvet bean as a feed for beef production.
A large amount of velvet beans has been used for feed-
ing dairy cows. In a great many cases, velvet beans are
fed in combination with other feeds. This no doubt is the
best way to use them. There is no one feed when fed
alone that will give ideal results for milk production.
From bulletin No. 143, Florida Agricultural Experi-
ment Station, we get the following data regarding the
value of velvet beans when used in a dairy ration for milk
production. The feeds compared were cottonseed meal,
peanut meal, and velvet bean meal. The feeds used
were wheat bran, sorghum silage, and the concentrate
feeds that were being compared. The feeds were mixed
in the following proportions:
Wheat bran ................... 9 pounds
Sorghum silage ................ 12 pounds
Cottonseed meal ............... 3 pounds
Four pounds of peanut meal were substituted for the
3 pounds of cottonseed meal and 6 pounds of velvet bean
meal were substituted for the 3 pounds of cottonseed
meal. These amounts were fed so that each lot of cows
would receive an equal amount of protein in each ration.


Summing up the results of the test which covered a
period of 68 days from early in November to January:
On the average:
180 pounds of cottonseed meal with 540 pounds of
bran and 720 pounds of silage produced 867.3
pounds of milk.
240 pounds of peanut meal with 540 pounds of bran
and 720 pounds of silage produced 918.4 pounds
of milk.
360 pounds of velvet bean meal with 540 pounds
bran and 720 pounds silage produced 939.5
pounds of milk.
This experiment makes a very good showing for velvet
beans as a milk producer.
The Massachusetts Agricultural Experiment Station
Bulletin No. 197 reports the results of two feeding ex-
periments with dairy cows in which velvet bean feed was
compared with wheat bran for milk production.
In summing up the results the authors of this bulletin
state: "In the first experiment an increase in milk yield
of 2.7 per cent was secured, and in the second experiment
an increase of 9 per cent, both in favor of the velvet bean
"In both experiments the velvet bean ration yielded
8,685.3 pounds of milk, an average increase of 5 per cent
in favor of the velvet bean ration."


The composition of velvet bean hay, like all other hays,
depends on the stage of maturity when cut for hay. The
following table taken from Florida Agricultural Experi-
ment Station Bulletin 60 shows the percentage composi-
tion of hay cut at different stages of growth:
Nitrogen Dry Matter
Laboratory Crude Free in Original
No. Protein Fats Fiber Ash Extract Material
1111 15.20 1.33 40.17 6.63 36.67 27.1
1112 14.34 2.12 36.26 5.90 41.38 30.6
1113 14.79 1.25 40.32 7.21 36.43 25.2
1114 15.62 1.82 32.21 6.16 44.19 29.9
1115 15.51 2.11 31.23 6.55 44.60 27.8
1116 13.24 2.31 31.72 6.38 46.35 30.2
1117 13.65 3.07 31.17 6.18 45.93 28.0
1118 14.22 3.42 28.41 6.89 47.06 31.6
* Florida Experiment Station Bulletin No. 60, p. 463.

Constituents (per cent)
o Carbohydrates
Kind of Silage ,.

Corn and velvet beans I 1 73.7 1.0 3.5 5.5 15.6 0.7
Corn (well matured)2.. .121 73.7 1.7 2.1 6.3 15.4 0.8

For Southern conditions there is hardly any question
but what the velvet bean should be placed at the head of
the list of soil improving crops that may be grown in
Florida. It makes no difference as to whether it is for
the purpose of improving soils that are naturally deficient
in plant food and humus or for the purpose of restoring
fertility to soils that have been exhausted by continuous
cultivation to such crops as cotton and corn.
Another important point in favor of the velvet bean as
a soil improving crop is the fact that they cover and shade
the surface soil during almost the entire summer season.
Their greatest value is perhaps the enormous amount
of humus or vegetable matter that they will add to the soil
in one year.
The following table taken from Florida Agricultural
Experiment Station Bulletin No. 60 will give some idea of
the yield and value of the velvet bean as a soil improving
Weight of green material from an acre ................... 21,132
Weight of dried material from an acre .................... 5.953
Weight of dried roots from an acre ...................... 690
Weight of nitrogen in vines from an acre ................. 131.5
Weight of nitrogen in roots from an acre .................. 9.7
Total nitrogen in crop from an acre .................. 141.2
Most of the nodules had already decomposed, and the
nitrogen from these was not included.
Bulletin 95 from the Alabama Agricultural Experiment
Station gives some interesting information as to the in-
crease in yield of oats, both grain and straw, following a
crop of velvet beans, cowpeas and crab-grass and millet
* Farmers' Bulletin 962, U.S.D.A.



Yield per Acre
Grain Straw
Bushels Pounds

Average after velvet bean vines and stubble ...... 33.6
Average after cowpea vines and stubble ......... 31.6
Average after crab-grass and millet stubble ..... 8.4



Crop and treatment in previous year
C orn ............................
Velvet beans (stubble plowed under)
Velvet beans (vines plowed under)..
Velvet beans (vines plowed under)..

Yield per
Acre, Bushels
Pounds Increase
Crop Acid Due to
in Phosphate Velvet
1901 Applied Corn Beans


100 13.5
100 17.9
100 25.9
.... 21.5

Farmers' Bulletin 962, U.S.D.A.


Crop treatment in previous years.
Cotton ........................
Velvet beans (cut for hay) ......
Velvet beans (vines plowed under)
Farmers' Bulletin 962, U.S.D.A.


Yield per Acre, Pounds
Due to
Seed Velvet
Cotton Beans
1,126 208
1,578 660


Like all other farm crops, the selection of good seed is
an important part in the production of the crop. A maxi-
mum crop cannot be produced unless a good stand of
plants is secured. It is impossible to secure a good stand
of plants unless good seed is planted.

The preparation of the seedbed for velvet beans is
similar to the preparation for any field crop such as corn
or cotton. Plow the land thoroughly, then smooth and
level with a tooth harrow. After the surface soil has


^ ".,-:, ----"-,^?-^ -

Fig. 8.-Velvet beans are rank growers and good climbers. Note bean
pods in foreground. (Courtesy U. S. D. A.)


been prepared as suggested above, lay off the rows and
plant the seed at once.
No exact date can be given for planting velvet beans.
This will depend on the location in the State, variety
grown, etc. In South Florida they may be planted any
time from the last of February to April. In Central Flor-
ida, plantings may be made from March to May; and in
North Florida any time from March 15 to May 15.
Nothing is gained by planting too early in the season.
The velvet bean is a plant that likes warm weather, and
it will not make much growth until the ground has be-
come thoroughly warm. Earl planting, provided condi-
tions are favorable, will generally produce a larger vine
growth and yield of seed. It will not be found advisable
to plant later than May 15.
It has not been found necessary to fertilize velvet
beans in order to produce good crops. An application
of fertilizer may sometimes increase the yield, but as a
rule the increased yields will not be sufficient to pay for
the fertilizer applied.
The following table shows the result of a fertilizer ex-
periment conducted by the Florida Agricultural Experi-
ment Station some years ago and reported in their. Bul-
letin No. 102, page 49.
Amounts of Fertilizer Yield of Shelled Beans
Per Acre Per Acre
Dried Acid Muriate
Plot Blood Phosphate of Potash Pounds Bushels
Pounds Pounds Pounds
1 ... ... ... 1,275 21.3
2 50 ... ... 1,161 19.4
3 ... . 40 1,311 21.9
4 ... 180 ... 1,278 21.3
5 50 ... 40 1,278 21.3
6 50 180 ... 1,236 20.6
7 ... 180 40 1,275 21.3
8 50 180 40 1,150 19.2
9 75 270 60 1,254 20.9
10 100 360 80 1,569 26.2
The difference in yield between Plot 1 that received
no fertilizer and Plots 8, 9 and 10 which received liberal
applications of complete fertilizer does not show a large
enough increase in yield of seed per acre to warrant
advocating the use of fertilizer for this crop.

Fig. 9.-Velvet beans and corn supply a large amount of good late fall and early winter grazing.
U. S,D, A.)



Planting in rows so that the crop can be cultivated will
give best results. Preferably the rows should be from
four to six feet apart, and the seed eighteen inches apart
in the row. Planting in four-foot rows will require about
one peck of seed to plant an acre. It is advisable to plant
corn or sorghum between the rows of beans to get larger
yields of beans. That is, plant the velvet beans in rows
six feet apart and then plant either corn or sorghum
between each row of velvet beans.
The seed may be planted from two to three inches
deep. If the surface soil is dry, it may be found advis-
able to plant deeper.
Planting may be done with a corn drill. However, it
may be necessary to change the drill plates or size of the
holes in the drill so as to drop the seed at the proper
Like most farm crops, the velvet bean requires culti-
vation. Whether the crop should be cultivated two or
three, or more, times will be largely a matter for each
grower to determine for himself. Cultivate often enough
to destroy all weed growth and keep the ground in con-
dition to induce the best possible growth until the vines
begin to cover the spaces between the rows.
The time of harvesting will depend largely on the
variety of beans grown. As a rule, very few velvet beans
are harvested until after the vines have been killed by
frost. However, the early maturing varieties may be
ready to harvest sooner. At the present time the large
majority of the velvet beans are grown for winter graz-
ing. It is not advisable to begin grazing the crop until
the entire crop is mature and the vines have been killed
by frost.
The early maturing varieties should be grazed soon
after the majority of the pods are mature. Most of the
early maturing varieties have the bad habit of the pods
splitting open and scattering the seed on the ground when
thoroughly ripe.
The yield of hay per acre from velvet beans varies just
as much as other hay crops. The yields that may be ex-
pected will vary from one half ton to two tons or more
an acre.
The yields of beans in pods will vary in much the same
proportion as the yield of hay. The yield of seed in the

1 I

Fig. 10.-Peanuts, one of the best crops for Florida farmers to grow.

L '- -

' I
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pod may be anywhere from 1,000 pounds to 4,000 pounds
an acre. In other words, this would mean a yield of 10
to 40 bushels of shelled beans an acre.
One hundred pounds of velvet beans in the pod will,
on the average, shell out 60 pounds, or one bushel of
clean seed. An average yield of 20 to 25 bushels of
beans an acre can be expected.
As a rule, a larger yield of seed per acre will be ob-
tained if corn or sorghum is planted between the rows
of beans.
The velvet bean is one crop that has but few insect ene-
mies. A caterpillar known as the velvet bean caterpillar
(Anticarsia gemmotilis) is the only insect that is likely
to cause any injury. The injury caused by this insect is
first noticed about the time the plants begin to bloom.
The caterpillars eat small holes in the leaves. In case
of a very heavy infestation of caterpillars, all of the
leaves may be devoured, leaving only the bare stems of
the plant.
The following account is taken from Bulletin 54 of the
Bureau of Entomology, U. S. Dept. of Agriculture, pp. 77
and 78:
"The caterpillar of this species is long and slender,
cylindrical, the last pair of legs projecting backward
and spreading. The body sparsely coated with rather
stiff black hairs which arise from small white button-like
tubercles. The head is large, a little wider and higher
than the body, rounded, and with a slight notch in the
middle. The head is orange yellow or greenish yellow
with a few small blackish dots. The general color of
the body varies from dull green to olive brown, which
becomes yellow in inflated specimens. It has a number
of fine white lines, one dorsal, two lateral-separated
by a blackish shade-and a distinct yellow and white
pair along the stigmata or breathing holes, with a little
dark edging below. It has eight pairs of legs. The ma-
ture larva measures about one and one-half inches in
length, and one-sixth inch in width.
"The moth is also ornamental inspite of its somewhat
somber colors-dull brownish gray with darker brown
shades. The body is stout and narrowed to the apex.
The expanse of the fore-wings is about one and one-half
"Blackbirds and rice birds eat them, but the insects
are often too nimble for the more clumsy birds, and many
escape. When, however, the birds are in large flocks,
as frequently happens, they must undoubtedly be of
service. The 'green sparrow' is said to be the most ac-

1 0

p% .*, .'( e1.- ; I .op* -- "-
S. , ,1

\ r

tive as well as successful enemy of the larvae. These
birds, however, do not occur in great numbers, but one
of them often gets under a vine and picks off larva after
larva. The larvae are found on the under sides of the
Calcium arsenate applied as a dust has been found
effective in destroying these caterpillars. Apply at the
rate of one to three pounds of calcium arsenate per acre.
Mix the calcium arsenate with hydrated lime in the pro-
portion of one pound of calcium arsenate to three pounds
of hydrated lime. See that the lime and calcium arsen-
ate are evenly mixed. The mixture can be easily and
cheaply applied. There are a number of dust guns on
the market that will be found suitable. Another rather
crude method is to place the mixture in a bran sack or
other loose woven material. Attach two sacks of this
kind to the end of a board. Balance the board on a
mule's back. The board should be of the proper length
to correspond with the width of the rows. Have a boy
ride the mule up and down the rows of velvet beans.
The continual motion of the mule will dust sufficient
calcium arsenate upon the foliage to poison the cater-
pillars. If the motion of the mule fails to dust sufficient
calcium arsenate upon the foliage, have the boy hit the
board gently with his hand.
There need be no fear of loss of life among livestock
grazing on velvet beans that have been dusted with cal-
cium arsenate. The amount of calcium arsenate used
is too small to injure cattle, and the rains soon wash it
off the foliage and it disappears in the soil.
Arachis hypogoea
The peanut acreage in Florida each year is around
200,000 to 215,000 acres. About two-thirds of the acre-
age is used as a grazing crop for hogs and the remainder
is harvested and sold as a cash crop.
If there were no peanuts grown in Florida there would
be but few hogs raised in the State. In other words the
hog crop of Florida depends very largely on the peanut
The peanut is an easy crop to grow and is well suited
to the soils of a large part of the State. Peanuts may be
grown in every section. However, at the present time
they are not grown on a commercial scale in all counties.
That portion of the State generally spoken of as North
Florida grows more acres than any other section.

The value of this crop as a hog feed has been recog-
nized for many years. There is hardly any question but
that 100 pounds of peanuts will produce more pounds of
pork than will any other crop.
There are a great number of varieties but there are
two varieties which are grown more generally in Flor-
ida. These are the Florida Runner and the Spanish.
The reader who wishes detailed information on grow-
ing peanuts should write to the State Department of
Agriculture, Tallahassee, Florida, for a copy of Bulletin
No. 9, New Series, "Growing Peanuts in Florida."
Vigna sinensis
There is no crop grown in Florida that is as easy to
grow as the cowpea. This is a short season crop, ma-
turing for hay in 60 to 80 days, depending on the variety
grown and climatic conditions.
A great many varieties of cowpeas are grown. For
Florida conditions, it is not necessary to grow any great
number of varieties. The two best varieties to grow in
Florida are the Brabham and the Iron. These are the
two best varieties because they are both more or less
resistant to root-knot.
Cowpeas can be planted almost any time from March
to July. The time of planting will depend very largely
on the location in the State and the purpose for which
they are to be used. If they are to be grown for soil
improving purposes, plant early in the spring. As soon
as they have made a good growth and are beginning to
put on seed pods, plow them under and plant a second
crop, or mow the crop, leaving a rather high stubble so
the plants will make a second growth.
If cowpeas are grown as a hay crop, plant from June
20 to July 10. Planting at this time, the crop will mature
and be ready to cut for hay at the close of the rainy sea-
son. Since cowpeas are difficult to cure as hay, it is im-
portant that every effort be made to have the crop mature
when the weather is most favorable for hay making.
There is quite a difference of opinion as to the best
method of planting. Some prefer to sow the seed broad-
cast while others are just as sure that the best way is
to plant in rows. Planting in rows has some advantages.
In the first place, less seed will be required to plant an
acre. When planted in rows, the crop can be given some


cultivation, which in most cases will increase the yield of
hay per acre. When sown broadcast more seed will be
required to plant an acre and there will be no chance
to cultivate the crop.
The following, taken from the Annual Report of the
Florida Agricultural Experiment Station for 1911, gives
some interesting data regarding the comparative yield
of hay from cowpeas sown broadcast and when planted
in rows.

Fig. 12.-Cowpea hay in South Florida.

Pounds of Hay Per Acre
Planted in Rows
Name and Number of Variety Sown Broadcast and Cultivated
Brabham, (home grown seed) ...... 2,350 2,520
New Era 27547 .................... 1,530 1,050
Red Ripper 27546 .................. 1,600 1,312
Unknown 27545 ................... 1,050 2,056
Iron 27544 ........................ 1,700 2,012
Whippoorwill 27543 ................ 1,250 1,837
Groit 26497 ....................... 1,050 962
Peerless 26495 .................... 1,650 2,231
Brabham 26407 ................... 1,750 1,837
Average ...................... 1,547.7 1,757.4

Cowpeas should be harvested for hay just about the
time the seedpods are well formed and before the seed
pods begin to turn yellow. If the crop is' allowed to
stand in the field until the seed pods begin to mature,


Fig. 13.-Cowpeas grow well and produce good yields in Florida.

Fig. 14.-One method of stacking cowpea hay that is used by some farmers in Florida. (Courtesy Florida
Agricultural Experiment Station.)

M. F, 3
. 9 -.,.,..+, -,
. . --.I ,,
~I +.

,j .;.i

Fig. 15.-Corn, cowpeas and beggarweed ready for the hogs.

the plants when cut for hay will shed a large number of
the leaves; hence a large part of the hay will be made
up of bare stems. The leaves are the best part of the
plant as far as hay is concerned. Every effort should be
made to harvest the crop at the proper stage of maturity
so as to produce the best quality of hay.
Another good indication as to when the crop has
reached the proper stage of maturity for making hay is
when the lower leaves begin to turn brown and fall off.
Cowpeas can be cut with a mowing machine the same
as other hay crops. A time for harvesting should be
selected when the weather is most favorable for curing
and when the crop has matured sufficiently to produce
the best quality of hay.
After the crop has been cut, let it lie in the swath until
the leaves and stems have thoroughly wilted, then rake
into windows and let it cure for 24 to 48 hours, if weather
is favorable. When the hay has completed curing in the
window, put it inlarge cocks, three to four feet in di-
ameter and four to six feet high. In a week or ten days,
with favorable weather, the hay should be ready to go
into the stack or mow.
When grown in combination with corn, the corn and
cowpeas can be best harvested by grazing with hogs. A
combination of corn and cowpeas is an excellent feed for
growing or fattening hogs for market. Hogs should be
turned in to graze about the time the first seed pods begin
to show signs of ripening.
In planting corn and cowpeas together to be grazed by
hogs, it is important to select a variety of corn that will
mature at the same time as the cowpeas or arrange the
planting date of the cowpeas so that they will mature at
the same time as the corn.

Glycine hispada
History of the Soy Bean
"The soy bean, also called the soja bean, the soya bean,
and in North Carolina the stock pea, is a valuable an-
nual leguminous plant, native of southeastern Asia. The
wild form of the plant, a slender, twining vine with small
pods and very small, dull black seeds, is known to occur
in China, Manchuria, and Chosen (Korea). The culture
and uses of the soy bean are recorded in ancient Chinese
literature and undoubtedly date from a period long be-
Farmers' Bulletin No. 1520, U. S. D. A.


' I

Fig. 16.-Nodules on the roots of a soy bean plant.
(Courtesy U. S. D. A.)

fore the time of written documents. The soy bean has
been a crop of prime importance in China and Japan since
ancient times and in extent of uses is the most valuable
legume now grown in those countries.
Previous to 1908 the trade in soy beans was largely con-
fined to Oriental countries, particularly China, Manchuria
and Japan. Since that time the value of the soy bean and
its products has gradually been realized in other coun-
tries, and during the last decade they have attained con-
siderable importance in the world's commerce. At the
present time the soy bean is cultivated principally in
China, Manchuria, Japan, Chosen (Korea), and the
United States, but it is also of more or less importance
in northern India, Indo China, and the Malayan Islands.
Soy beans are grown also in Italy, France, southern Rus-
sia, Hungary, Hawaii, Egypt, South Africa, and in a few
countries of South America, but the acreage in these
countries is very limited.
The soy bean was introduced into the United States as
early as 1804 and for several decades was regarded more
as a botanical curiosity than as a plant of economic im-
portance. Since 1890 nearly all of the state argicultural
experiment stations have experimented with soy beans,
and many bulletins have been published dealing wholly
or partly with the crop. Previous to the numerous in-
troductions by the United States Department of Agricul-
ture beginning in 1898 there were not more than eight
varieties of soy beans grown in the United States. With
the introduction form Asiatic countries of varieties suited
to the wide range of soil and climatic conditions in the
United States, the soy bean has assumed great impor-
tance in recent years and offers far-reaching possibilities
to the future agriculture of this country.
The soy bean has been used mainly for forage purposes
in the United States, but as a forage crop alone it would
not likely become one of the major field crops. The acre-
age in soy beans has increased very rapidly during the
last decade. Previous to 1917 considerably less than
500,000 acres were grown. In 1924 there were more
than 2,500,000 acres, of which 1,000,000 were grown for
hay, 932,000 for pasture and silage, and 613,000 for the
production of seed. More than 10,000,000 bushels of soy
bean seed and about 1,360,000 tons of soy bean hay were
produced in 1924. Although the increase in acreage
has been general over the eastern part of the United
States, the most marked increases have occurred in the
Corn Belt and adjoining States and a few of the Southern
States. In 1924 the five leading States for total acreage
were Illinois (747,000 acres), Missouri (400,000), North

Carolina (255,000), Indiana (210,000), and Tennessee
(167,000); and for seed production, North Carolina, (2,-
560,000 bushels), Illinois (1,548,000), Missouri (1,379,-
000), Ohio (728,000), and Indiana (650,000). The
acreage will undoubtedly continue to increase with im-
proved methods and machinery for handling the crop
and with greater utilization of the soy bean and its by-
products for industrial purposes.
The large yield of seed, the excellent quality of forage,
the ease of growing and harvesting the crop, its freedom
from insect enemies and plant diseases, and the possibil-
ities of the seed for the production of oil and oil meal
and as human food, and the many ways in which the soy
bean may be used, all tend to give the crop a high po-
tential value.
The climatic adaptations of the soy bean are about the
same as for corn. It is especially well adapted to the
northern half of the Cotton Belt and the southern part of
the Corn Belt, where the larger and later varieties, which
give yields that make their extensive cultivation profit-
able, can be grown. In the Northern States, however,
early varieties introduced from northern Manchuria ma-
ture fair yields of seed, and later varieties can be grown
successfully for hay, pasture or silage. In the southern-
most part of the Gulf States soy beans seldom develop
seed normally, although an excellent growth of forage is
produced. Similar conditions prevail in Arizona, New
Mexico, and parts of California, where extremely hot
weather prevails during the period when the seed is form-
After the soy bean is well started it withstands short
periods of drought, and a wet season neither seriously
retards growth nor decreases the yield. The soy bean
plant seems to adapt itself not only to soils but to seasons
as well. The period of germination is the most critical
stage, when excess moisture or prolonged drought are
likely to be injurous. The soy bean is less susceptible to
frost than are cowpeas, field beans, or corn, light frost
having but little effect on the plants when young or when
nearly mature.
Although the soy bean will succeed on nearly all types
of soil, the best results are obtained on mellow, fertile
loams or sandy loams. In general, the soil requirements
are about the same as those of corn, but the soy bean
will make a more satisfactory growth than corn on soils
low in fertility, provided inoculation is present. The

crop will not make nearly such good growth on poor
soils as cowpeas. On the heavier clays and on the lighter
sandy soils the cowpea also succeeds better than the soy
bean. The soy bean will do better than clover or alfalfa
on soils of low fertility or on acid soils, but for the best
results acid soils must be limed and poor soils must be
supplied with those mineral elements in which they are
deficient. With inoculation and moderate applications
of fertilizers the soy bean gives good results on the sandy
soils of the Coastal Plain area.
The soy bean does not necessarily require a well-drain-
ed soil, but it will not succeed where water stands on the
surface for any considerable length of time. The crop
grows on well drained swamp lands, provided acidity,
when present, is corrected by the use of lime. Excellent
yields of seed and forage are procured on some muck
soils, and the crop is of considerable importance in re-
gions where such soils occur.
In the selection of a variety several factors should be
considered, the most important of which are adaptation
to local climatic and soil conditions and to the purpose
for which the crop is grown. The number of soy bean
varieties is very large, and as many new ones are being
introduced by growers and seedsmen, the most desirable
character both for forage and for seed production need
to be considered. Although yields of forage or of seed
is the most important single consideration, other factors,
such as maturity, habit of growth, coarseness, ability to
retain leaves, color and size of seed, shattering, and
disease resistance, are important. In those sections where
the crop is likely to become of value for the production of
oil and oil meal, the percentage of oil and the color of
the seed should be considered in addition to seed produc-
tion. Manufacturers of oil and oil meal prefer the yellow-
seeded varieties not only because of the higher oil per-
centage but also because the meal or flour is of better
In order to realize to the fullest extent the possibilities
of the soy bean and to develop it agriculturally, it is im-
portant to utilize the very best varieties. At the present
time about 45 varieties are handled by domestic growers
and seedsmen. Unfortunately there is much confusion in
the names of the varieties, the same variety frequently
being known under several different names. As new
varieties are easily obtained through selection, crossing
and introduction, it is desirable to limit varieties in trade
to the very best. In many States where the soy bean is

Fig. 18.-A good crop of soy beans 70 days after planting. The crop is not yet mature.

becoming an important crop, the seed of the best varieties
are certified by crop improvement associations.
The planting of imported seed is not to be recommend-
ed. In general such seed consists of a mixture of vari-
eties, most of which are inferior to those grown in this
country. The United States Department of Agriculture
and several State Experiment Stations have given con-
siderable attention to the introduction, improvement, and
adaptation of pure strains, and it is believed that in the
planting of imported seed an unnecessary risk is taken.
During the last 20 years more than 2,000 lots of seed for
testing with a view to their introduction into this country
have been received by the department from China, Man-
churia, Japan, Chosen (Korea), Siberia, and India.
Among these are many that have now become established
on the market. Some of the recent introductions have
proven to be so valuable in field trials that they are deem-
ed important acquisitions, and seed will be distributed
widely to further their culture.
In Farmers' Bulletin 1520 there is given a description
of 101 varieties of soy beans. It would not be wise or
practical to recommend such a long list of varieties for
any one State. A large number of varieties have been
tested at the Florida Agricultural Experiment Station. In
addition to varieties tested and results obtained by the
Experiment Station, farmers in nearly all parts of the
State have, during the past ten or fifteen years, tested
out numbers of varieties so that today it is not such a dif-
ficult matter to suggest a list of varieties adapted to con-
ditions in this State. "It is not meant that the list of vari-
eties given are the only ones that will grow as it is quite
possible that there are varieties now on the market that
have not been tested out under Florida conditions.
The following description of varieties is taken from
Farmers' Bulletin 1520.
"Biloxi.-Introduced under S. P. I. No. 23211 from
Tangsi, China, in 1908. Plants stout, erect, bushy, ma-
turing in about 165 days; pubescence tawny; flowers pur-
ple; 85 to 90 days to flower; pods 2 to 3 seeded; seeds
dark brown with brown hilum, about 1,895 to the pound;
germ yellow; oil 20.1 per cent.
"Laredo.-Introduced under S. P. I. No. 40658 from
Yangpingkwan, China, in 1914. In China this variety is
said to be adapted to drier lands than other varieties.
Plants slender, erect, inclined to lodge on fertile soils,
maturing in about 140 days; pubescence tawny; flowers
both purple and white, 70 to 75 days to flower; pods 2 to

Fig, 19,-Soy beans and corn make a good combination as a feed and forage crop. (Courtesy U. S. D. A.)


3 seeded; seeds black with black hilum, about 7,775 to
the pound; germ yellow; oil 14.0 per cent. The Laredo
is highly resistant to wilt and nematodes.
"Mammoth Yellow.-Nothing definite is known re-
garding the origin of this variety. The Mammoth Yellow
is the standard commercial variety. Plants stout, erect,
maturing in about 145 days; pubescence gray; flowers
white, 85 to 90 days to flower; pods 2 to 3 seeded; seeds
straw yellow with tawny hilum, about 2,150 to the pound;
germ yellow; oil 18.6 per cent.
"Otootan.-Introduced from the Hawaiian Islands in
1911 by C. K. McClelland, Georgia Agricultural Experi-
ment Station. It is said to have come originally from For-
mosa. Plants slender, erect, bushy, but lodging under
favorable conditions, maturing in about 175 days; pube-
scence tawny; flowers purple, 90 to 95 days to flower;
pods 2 to 3 seeded; seeds black with black hilum, about
6,150 to the pound; germ yellow; oil 17.7 per cent."
Soy beans may be sown broadcast or planted in rows.
When planted in rows and given some cultivation, a much
larger yield will be produced. If they are grown for hog
feed, they should be planted in alternate rows with corn.
In planting with corn, -a variety of corn should be selected
that will mature at the same time as the soy beans. Or
the corn and beans can be planted at different times so
that they will be ready to feed at the same time.
If planting for a hay crop, it would be well to plant in
rows two and a half to three feet apart using about three
pecks of seed to the acre. It is important to use a liberal
amount of seed so as to make sure of a good stand. It is
impossible to produce the maximum yield unless a good
stand is obtained.
Planting can be done any time from early in March to
May 15. The early plantings will produce the best yield.
Of the four varieties described as desirable for Florida
conditions, two of the varieties, Biloxi and Otootan, may
be planted early, that is, in South and Central Florida
plant early in March. The other two varieties, Laredo
and Mammoth Yellow, will produce, as a rule, much bet-
ter yields if planted a month later.
Plant any time in April or up to May 15 for best yields.
For North and West Florida plant ten days to two weeks
later than for Central and South Florida.
"Most factors relating to the production of soy beans
have received considerable study and investigation. Per-
Bulletin No. 277, Maryland Agricultural Experiment Station.

haps the most perplexing problem for the soy bean grow-
er and the one that has received the least attention ex-
perimentally, is that of curing and saving the crop after
it has been grown. In the making of good soy bean hay,
the grower is concerned with the time of cutting the crop
or the age of the plants when harvested; the type and
variety of beans grown; the weather conditions at harvest
time, the time of the day at which the cutting or mowing
is done, and the composition of the crop.
"Rather extended notes have been made on the soy
bean crops grown at the Maryland Experiment Station
during the last ten years with reference to each of these
"The factors which determine the time to cut a crop
of soy beans for hay are the age of the plant, the devel-
opment and the maturity of the pods, and the maturity
of the leaves. With varieties like Virginia and Wilson,
when planted at the usual planting date (May 10 to June
1), the crop is ready to harvest at about ninety-five to one
hundred and five days. At about ninety-five days after
emerging, the plants seem to have accumulated their
maximum amount of dry matter. There is then a period
of ten to fifteen days in which they seem to remain al-
most stationary, so far as growth and additional yield
is concerned. It is at some point during this period that
the cutting for hay should be done. With late maturing
varieties like Mammoth Yellow, the blooming does not
begin until the plants are sixty-five to seventy days old.
These varieties are usually ready to be cut for hay at
about one hundred and fifteen to one hundred and twen-
ty-five days after germination.
"The practice in the past has been for the grower to
determine the time for cutting for hay almost entirely
by the maturity and development of the seed pods. Wil-
son and Virginia varieties will have developed nearly full
size pods within seventy to seventy-five days after the
plants emerge from the ground. The first blossoms with
these varieties usually appear when the plants are about
fifty-five days old. By the time the plants of these vari-
eties are ninety-five days old, the beans within the pods
will be nearly maximum size, although the first pods
will not be ripe. Late maturing varieties, such as Mam-
moth Yellow, Patuxent and Hollybrook, will have devel-
oped their pods to the same stage of maturity in about
one hundred and fifteen days. To get the maximum yield
from these varieties, it is necessary to cut them for hay
about twenty to twenty-five days later than the best date

for cutting varieties like Virginia and Wilson.
"If the harvesting of soy beans for hay is delayed too
long, there is considerable loss on account of the mature
leaves dropping from the plants. With the medium early
varieties like Virginia and Wilson, the loss of leaves be-
gins when the plants are about one hundred to one hun-
dred and five days old. Soy bean leaves contain a higher
percentage of protein than any other portion of the plant
except the seed. It is, therefore, important that as few
as possible of the leaves be lost in the hay crop.
"The weather conditions which are prevalent when
soy bean hay is being made is a very important factor
in determining the quality of the hay as well as deter-
mining the ease with which the curing may be accom-
plished. In good weather, soy bean hay may be made in
about the same way as good alfalfa hay is cured, but if
the crop is cut and there follows immediately a period
of rainy and cloudy weather, special care must be given
to the handling of the crop. Soy beans which are planted
not later than May 20 may be harvested about August
25. The weather conditions during August and early
September are usually more favorable for hay making
than they are during the latter part of September and in
"Soy beans, like other vegetation, varies in the amount
of water within the stems and leaves during each twenty-
four hour period. The plants contain their maximum
amount of water in the early morning, and their smallest
amount during mid-day, if the weather is clear. Curing
of hay is largely a matter of reducing the water content
of the plants. It is, therefore, a matter of wisdom and
economy in both time and labor to cut the crop during
mid-day and in clear weather. It is doubtful whether
the cutting should ever begin before 10:30 or 11:00
o'clock in the morning, and it should be discontinued
about 3:30 or 4:00 in the afternoon. Soy beans that are
cut for hay in this way should be sufficiently wilted to
permit their being put into windows by the following
afternoon. If the weather continues favorable, all of the
curing may be done in the window. Where a side deliv-
ery rake is used, it would be best to turn them over once
or twice during this curing. If the beans are placed in
cocks, it is best to build the high type rather than the
broad, flat type. This permits better aeration and more
rapid curing.

Fig. 20.-Beggarweed, one of the good legume crops that may be grown in all parts of Florida.


7.00 9.00 11.00 1.00 3.00 5.00
Weather Conditions. A.M. A.M. A.M. P.M. P.M. P.M.
Clear days-
Maximum moisture ... 81.88 79.28 76.01 78.07 77.16 78.74
Minimum moisture .... 79.58 76.43 69.95 71.12 74.54 75.13
Average moisture ..... 80.87 77.91 73.81 73.79 75.44 76.56
Partly cloudy days-
Average moisture ..... 79.44 80.26 77.29 78.92 76.37 77.43
Cloudy days-
Average moisture ..... 81.32 79.23 79.67 .79.62 81.43 79.96
"In rainy weather, it is best to get the soy beans into
large but narrow cocks as soon as possible after wilting
has taken place. Cocks of this type will greatly reduce
the amount of beans that will be spoiled by inclement
weather. It will also prevent in a great measure the loss
of the leaves of the plants."
Desmodium purpureum
"Beggarweed is an important forage plant from central
Florida northward to southern Georgia and Alabama,
and occasionally farther north. It is an annual which
makes its growth late in the season at the time that crab-
grass is growing most rapidly, the two usually being
found together. The plant is erect and grows to a
height of 5 to 7 feet on good soil. When cut at the right
time and properly cured, it makes a superior hay, but
it must be handled carefully. If allowed to become too
old before it is cut, many of the lower leaves are lost
and the stems become woody. After cutting it should
be windrowed as soon as wilted, to prevent the leaves
from dropping. To make good hay, it should be cut
when not more than 3 to 4 feet high, usually in July,
and a second cutting can be made a few weeks later.
Although not sufficiently bulky for use in filling a silo,
a little of it mixed with other material adds greatly to
the value of the silage, as it gives a marked June flavor
to butter even when used in midwinter. Its greatest
value, however, is as a grazing plant in late summer and
early winter, it being even more fattening than alfalfa
or cowpeas.
"Florida beggarweed usually makes a scattering and
uneven volunteer growth on land which has not been
plowed during the year, though when occasional strips
are left standing at the second cutting and the field is
then harrowed crosswise to scatter the seeds, a good crop
*Farmers' Bulletin 1125, U. S. D. A.

Fig. 21.-Cowpeas and beggarweed growing together. Two of Florida's valuable legumes. (Courtesy Flori-
da Agricultural Experiment Station.)

is grown the second season after plowing. The better
practice is to reseed the ground after oats, melon, or some
other early crop has been removed, using 20 to 30 pounds
of the rough seed per acre.
"In regions where it is grown most commonly, beggar-
weed is seldom seen as a volunteer crop on newly cleared
lands, but is more. or less abundant, growing with crab-
grass and Mexican clover in nearly all old fields, especial-
ly in corn and cotton, where it springs up after the crops
are laid by, and furnishes a large amount of good graz-
ing after the crops have been gathered. Some cotton
growers object to it in their fields as the immature seeds
are somewhat rough, and when the stalks are- switched
about by the wind the seed cotton is often pulled from
the bolls.
"Beggarweed is easily killed by a single cultivation in
late summer and soon disappears from fields which are
not plowed. Although it is a crop of secondary impor-
tance and is seldom used alone, it is a welcome addition
to any hay crop, and when so abundant as to afford good
grazing it will fatten horses, mules, and cattle more rap-
idly than most other plants."
Yield per
Date of Date of Acre (Pounds)
Planting Harvesting Green Dry
April 21 July 1 1st cutting 5,948 1,080
April 21 July 29 2nd cutting 6,210 1,350
April 21 Aug. 31 3rd cutting 5,940 1,188
April 21 Sept. 28 4th cutting 5,049 1,012
Total for season. ..................... 23,147 4,630

Crotalaria is one of the new legume crops for Florida.
This crop is better known as a soil.improving crop than
as a feed crop.
Crotalaria has been growing in Florida for the last
ten or twelve years. However, it attracted little or no
attention until some five or six years ago. Since that time
it has become established in nearly all parts of the State.
Crotalaria is an annual legume that makes an erect
growth three to six feet in height. When the stand is
thin the plants branch freely, but when planted thick
the plants make an upright growth with few branches
but a large lot of leaves.
There is a large number of species, fifteen or twenty,
to choose from. However, there are two species, Crota-
S. C. Bulletin 123, page 7.

Fig. 22.-Beggarweed. Note the height, higher than a man.

laria spectablis, formerly called C. sericea, and Crota-
laria striata, that have done exceptionally well in Florida.
In fact, these two have produced a much better growth
and yield than any of the other species.
The preparation of the seedbed is the same as for
other crops.
Crotalaria may be planted in rows or sown broadcast.
At the present time the larger part of the crop in the State
is sown broadcast. When planted in rows make the rows
two or three feet apart and drill the seed in the row.
When sown broadcast use a sufficient amount of seed to
get a good stand. Ten to twenty pounds of good seed
per acre should be enough to insure a good stand.
The crop may be planted any time from March to the
middle of June. When the crop is allowed to mature
and ripen seed in the fall, there will be sufficient seed
shattered to reseed and give a good crop the following
Crotalaria produces a good yield on most of our Flor-
ida soil. It seems particularly well adopted to sandy
soils. Of course on the better type soils it produces much
better yields. The yield is influenced to some extent by
the planting dates.
It is not at all uncommon to get yields of five to eight
tons of green material from an acre. There are on rec-
ord yields of eighteen and twenty tons of green material
per acre. Converting these green weights into hay the
yield might be one to five tons of hay per acre.
Heretofore Crotalaria has been advocated only as a
soil improving crop. For this purpose it is one of the
best in Florida. However, as the crop is being grown
more generally over the State and it has been given more
careful study by Experiment Station workers, it seems
possible that in the very near future Crotalaria may be-
come one of our good forage crops.
From year to year more new species are being found
and tried out to determine their adaptability to Florida
In the past there has been the supposition that Crota-
laria carried some poisonous principle hence it was dan-

Fig. 23,-Crotalaria. This field produced a yield of more than 50,000 pounds of green material per acre. This
is equal to 10 or 12 tons of hay per acre.

s ' ~ :.'''
" ~

';' r


gerous to use it as a forage or hay crop.
During the past five years a few people in the State
have tried it as a hay. It has been fed to horses, mules
and cattle without any bad effects.
During the year a feeding test with Crotalaria meal
and alfalfa meal was conducted. This is, we believe, the
first time that Crotalaria meal has been used as a feed
for milk production.
The feeding test was started March 16, 1927. Six
cows were selected from the herd for this test and were
divided into two lots. The reversal method of feeding
was used, the feeding being divided into 28-day periods.
The first period started March 16, 1927, the second,
April 13, 1927, and the third period May 11, 1927.
In this test Crotalaria meal was compared with alfalfa
meal for milk production. The feed mixture used was
as follows:
Crotalaria or alfalfa meal....... 125 pounds
Corn meal .................... 75 pounds
Ground oats .................. 50 pounds
Cottonseed meal .............. 50 pounds
Peanut meal .................. 25 pounds
Each cow was fed 12 pounds of one of the above mix-
tures per day.
The following are the analyses of the Crotalaria meal
and the alfalfa meal used in the following test:

Crotalaria Meal Alfalfa Meal
Moisture ......................... 11.77 percent 11.77 percent
Ash .............................. 3.21 percent 9.23 percent
Fat .............................. 1.36 percent 2.16 percent
Protein .......................... 8.58 percent 12.56 percent
Carbohydrates .................... 27.08 percent 30.43 percent
Fiber ............... ............. 48.00 percent 33.85 percent

The above analyses show that alfalfa meal is richer in
food elements than is Crotalaria meal. However, the
Crotalaria meal used in this test was not made from the
best quality of hay. The Crotalaria plants were too ma-
ture when cut to make a good quality of hay. There
should be but little difference in the analysis of Cro-
talaria meal and alfalfa meal when both are made from
the same quality of hay.
Annual Report, Florida Agricultural Experiment Station, 1927, pp. 27R-

Fig. 24.-Pigeon peas. A rnk grower nd heavy fielder of green trial.

Fig. 24.-Pigeon peas. A rank grower and heavy yielder of green material.





First Period-March 16 to April 12, 1927

Lot I, Fed Alfalfa Meal Lot II, Fed Crotalaria Meal
Lbs. Milk Lbs. Milk
Cow No. 171 .......... 418.7 Cow No. 141 .......... 411.4
Cow No. 225 .......... 367.4 Cow No. 151 .......... 400.0
Cow No. 229 .......... 529.4 Cow No. 155 .......... 448.1

Total for period ... 1,315.5 Total for period ... 1,259.5
Second Period-April 13 to May 10, 1927

Lot I, Fed Crotalaria Meal
Lbs. Milk
Cow No. 171 .......... 388.7
Cow No. 225 .......... 288.0
Cow No. 229 .......... 454.6

Total for period ... 1,131.3

Lot II, Fed Alfalfa Meal
Lbs. Milk
Cow No. 141 .......... 363.6
Cow No. 151 .......... 453.9
Cow No. 155 .......... 393.0

Total for period ... 1,210.5

Third Period-May 11 to June 7, 1927

Lot I, Fed Alfalfa Meal
Lbs. Milk
Cow No. 171 .......... 335.5
Cow No. 225 .......... 314.0
Cow No. 229 .......... 401.8

Total for period ... 1,051.3

Lot II, Fed Crotalaria Meal
Lbs. Milk
Cow No. 141 .......... 294.8
Cow No. 151 .......... 399.7
Cow No. 155 .......... 331.4

Total for period ... 1,025.9

Total milk produced by feeding alfalfa meal........ 3,577.3 pounds
Total milk produced by feeding Crotalaria meal .... 3,416.7 pounds
Difference in favor of alfalfa meal ................ 160.6 pounds

Cajanus cajan

The pigeon pea is a crop that is not yet well known in
Florida. It is quite probable that within a very few years
it will become one of the well known crops in Florida.
A goodly number of our now well known crons in Flor-
ida were once new and untried. Furthermore we will
continue to have new crops introduced and tried out.
Some of course will fail while others will be grown suc-
cessfully and become important crops in the future. The
mere fact that a crop is not well known in the State today
is no sign that it may not become a crop of importance.
The pigeon pea is one of those crops that is not well
known because it has been grown only in a few experi-
mental plots. In other countries it is a crop of consider-

able importance since it makes a good forage crop for
livestock and the seeds are used for human food.
There may be some question as to whether it is a na-
tive of Asia or Africa. Almost from the beginning of
history the pigeon pea has been an important human food
in some of the tropics.
There is a large number of different varieties of this
plant now growing in some of the tropical islands. It has
been growing in Hawaii for the past ten years where it
has become an important forage crop.
In Florida it no doubt will be an annual. In the tropics
one planting continues to grow for several years. It is
said to withstand drought to a remarkable degree.
The following table taken from Hawaii Experiment
Station Bulletin No. 46 gives the composition of pigeon
pea products.
(Based on all available analyses made in Hawaii to February 15, 1920)
g hydrates

Character of Material. a

o o -o. -

Fresh green foragel .. 70.001 2.64 7.11 10.721 7.88 1.131 1.65
Whole plant as hay and I
ground into meal .. 11.19 3.53 14.83 28.87 39.89 2.371 1.72
Seed and pod meal .... 11.45 3.85 17.65 30.73 34.53 2.821 1.49
Seed meal .......... 12.26 3.551 22.34 6.44 53.94 3.571 1.46
Thrashed pod meal2 .. 13.30 2.661 8.7535.441 39.22 1.401 1.03
*Bulletin No. 46, Hawaii Experiment Station, 1921.
1 Upper third of plant with seed in pod.
2 By-product in seed production.



.Crop 1924 1925 1926 Average
Beggarweed .......... 0.79 0.92 0.15 0.62
Velvet Beans ......... 0.98 0.82 0.76 0.85
Cowpeas ............. 1.48 1.30 0.52 1.10
Crotalaria ........... 2.59 1.90 4.18 2.89


Crop 1925 1926 Average
Beggarweed ...................... 2.29 1.78 2.03
Velvet Beans ................ .... 1.27 1.53 1.40
Cowpeas ........................ 1.27 1.01 1.14
Crotalaria ....................... 4.63 2.76 3.69


Tops Roots
Beggarweed ................................. 1.64 1.07
Velvet Beans ................................ 2.51 1.48
Cowpeas .................................... 2.29 1.65
Crotalaria ................................... 2.78 0.92

Just when is the best time for planting has not been
determined as yet. However, with the present knowledge
of the crop, it is believed that early spring planting would
give the best results. By planting early in the spring it
would give an opportunity for making two cuttings of
hay during the growing season. Plant any time from
March 15 to April 15 if two cuttings of hay are wanted.
Planting might be made as late as June and make one
good crop.

Plant in rows three to four feet apart and drill the
seed in the row so as to have the plants eight to ten
inches apart in the row.
It may require ten or fifteen pounds of seed to plant an
acre when planted in rows. When sown broadcast 40 to
60 pounds of seed per acre should be sown.

Stokes, W. E., Agronomist, Florida Agricultural Experiment Station,
"Journal of the American Society of Agronomy," Vol. 19, No. 10, October, 1927.

fr% F T - -n 0

vl.W -

NE keR
~1;274 ,

Fig. 25.- Kudzu.


Harvest the crop for hay when in bloom. When the
first cutting is made in the summer leave a rather high
stubble. The stubble will put out new growth and in
a short time a second cutting will be ready to harvest.
Cure and handle the same as any other hay crop.
The yield that may be expected may vary from one to
five tons of hay per acre.
Pigeon peas may be used as a soiling crop, for all class-
es of livestock including poultry and rabbits, as hay or as
a soil improving crop. If the crop is allowed to ripen
seed, the seed will be found valuable as a poultry feed.
Pueraria thunbergiana
Kudzu is a large-leafed, woody, leguminous vine, na-
tive to Japan, which grows with remarkable rapidity. It
succeeds better on clay subsoil than on sandy soils. Where
the summers are warm and moist it grows with great
luxuriance. Kudzu is a most excellent vine for arbors
and porches, for which purpose it is grown in most of
the southern cities, climbing to a height of 60 feet or
more. It succeeds well, however, as far north as Nova
Scotia. The leaves resemble in a general way those of
the common bean, but they are larger and angular lobed.
besides being tougher in texture; the stems and leaf
stalks are somewhat hairy. As far north as Washing-
ton, the vine will bloom, but only occasionally and then
late in the fall. The blossoms are dull purple-red and
hang in clusters. The pods are thin, very hairy, and
rarely mature in the latitude of Washington. Kudzu is
usually propagated by layers or roots. The vines are
very long, and take root at any joint which rests on the
ground. It can be grown from seed, but the young seed-
lings are very weak and tender, so roots are preferred.
The roots are usually planted about 8 by 8 feet in corn-
fields, and if the corn is kept well cultivated, no attention
need be given the kudzu during its first season. Planting
should be done very early, January or February being
the best months, as it begins its new growth very early
in the spring, after which the transplanting is seldom
satisfactory. During the second season no other crops
can be grown on the land, and the kudzu should have
the ground well covered with vines and roots. Under
favorable circumstances a moderate cutting of hay may
Farmers' Bulletin 1125, U. S. D. A.


Fig. 26.-Kudzu. One of Florida's legume hay and forage crops. (Courtesy Florida Agricultural Experi-
ment Station.)
r c~f,~'?~iPk#~rl'g~wr ~"r;4 2 31i~~69~~i;~Ls~Jpf-A"~h)

Fig.26.Hudu. ne f Forid~s egue hy ad fragecros. Coutes FlridaAgrculura Exeri
ment Sation.

be made, or it may be grazed lightly just before frost
is expected. It is not until the third season that a full
crop can be secured, but after that, heavy, abundant
crops may be expected.
Though the vines are long and tough, they are not
especially difficult to handle. In mowing, a scythe blade
or something similar should be fastened vertically to the
outer end of the cutter bar so that the swaths will be
separated. Raking is usually done with a fork, pulling
the vines into small piles which can be handled easily
in loading a wagon. When made into hay, the vines re-
tain the leaves much better than most other legumes,
and the hay is injured very little by rain which may fall
upon it when nearly or quite dry. The hay is usually
rather dark in color, but is eaten greedily by all kinds of
stock, being especially valuable for colts and calves. When
grown on a rich soil, at least three cuttings of 2 to 3 tons
each may be expected, and total yields of 10 tons are
often claimed.
Kudzu is used more largely for grazing than for hay,
most graziers preferring to have two fields which are
grazed alternately, although the Georgia Experiment
Station has made a series of tests which indicate that
continuous moderate grazing gives the best results. It
is not desirable for grazing dairy cows, as it often affects
the milk unpleasantly. Some graziers prefer to let it
grow through the summer and make a dense mass of vines
and foliage, 2 to 4 feet deep, and then graze it during the
dry weather of September and October when other
pasturage is getting dry and scarce.
The principal objection to the plant is that it requires
a long time to make full growth and that, being a peren-
nial, it can not be used in a rotation. There are many
places on brought and waste land, however, on which it
can be grown to advantage, and it is easily killed by
plowing in May or June.
Phaseolus aureus
The mung bean is not a new crop. It has been grown
in a number of the Southern States for many years.
However, it may not always have been called the mung
The native home of the mung bean is Southern Asia.
It is also well known in South Africa as well as in parts
of China, India and the Malayan Islands.
In foreign countries the seed is an important food for
humans. In the United States it has seldom been used

Fig. 27.-Mung beans in a pecan grove. Two rows on right were not fertilized. Those on 'the left were fer-
tilized at the rate of 200 pounds to the acre with a 4-8-6 formula.


for this purpose. The mature seed is a valuable poultry
feed which may be fed by itself or used in a mixture.
Some years ago in some of the Southern States this
bean was known as the chickasaw pea, or the Newman
The mung bean is an upright grower, with a small stem
and many leaves. On good land it grows to a height of
two and a half to three and a half feet.
Planting and cultivation is very similar to that for cow-
peas or soy beans. Plant about the same time that you
would plant cowpeas. Make the rows two or three feet
apart and drill the seed in the row. It is not as vigorous
a grower as the cowpea, hence it cannot compete with
grass and weeds to the same extent as cowpeas can. For
this reason it has been found best to plant it in rows so
that the crop can be cultivated until the plants have made
a good growth. When grown for hay, it should be har-
vested before the seed pods begin to turn brown and
show signs of ripening.
The mung bean has not become popular in Florida and
is only grown to a limited extent. This is due largely to
the fact that it has not been able to compete successfully
with other crops grown for hay and forage, and then too,
it is attacked by root knot.
Pisum arvense
The Austrian winter pea is a comparatively new crop
for Florida farmers. It may have been grown in a small
way by a comparatively few farmers in past years, but it
has only been in the last four or five years that a goodly
number of farmers have been growing it as a field crop.
It is now grown in north and west Florida as a winter
cover crop for soil improving purposes and also as a
winter grazing crop for all classes of livestock.
The Austrian winter pea is one of the few winter
legumes that can be grown successfully here in Florida.
It grows best during the winter season because it is one
of those plants that likes cool weather. In fact, it will not
grow in Florida during the summer time.
For best results the seed should be sown in October or
early in November. The seed may be sown broadcast
at the rate of 30 to 35 pounds to the acre. It may follow
a corn, cotton, peanuts, or any other crop that is harvested
in early fall. The soil needs no special preparation except
that it should be thoroughly inoculated with the proper
bacteria. The proper inoculation of the soil is the im-
portant link for successfully growing this crop.
One of the best methods of inoculation is by the use

*2 :~ '

~ ~*, . ~

Fig. 28.-Knee-deep in Austrian winter peas. Photo taken January, 1929.

of soil taken from a field that has grown a good crop
of Austrian peas within the last two years. Soil taken
from a well inoculated field should be scattered over
the new field, to be planted to Austrian winter peas, at
the rate of 400 to 600 pounds to the acre. This transfer
of soil should be made at the time of sowing the seed.
Scatter the inoculated soil evenly over the surface of the
soil and cover the soil and seed at the time with a disk
harrow, or, if you wish, a plow may be used. If a plow
is used, plow very shallow, not over three or four inches
deep. When it is not possible to get such a large quantity
of soil, another method that will give good results may be
used. For each 30 pounds of seed, take 2 to 3 quarts
of soil that has come from a field that grew a good crop
of Austrian peas the previous winter. Make a mixture of
two parts syrup and one part water. Add enough of this
mixture to the seed so as to thoroughly moisten all the
seed then add the inoculated soil to the moistened seed
and thoroughly mix so that each seed gets a coating of
the soil. It is also advisable to purchase some of the com-
mercial cultures for inoculating the seed and soil. Sow
the seed as soon as treated and cover immediately with
disk harrow or plow.
Remember that the three main points in the production
of a good crop are thorough inoculation, a liberal amount
of seed sown per acre, and a liberal application of super-
phosphate. A maximum crop cannot be obtained when a
limited amount of seed is sown.
In Florida most of our legume crops do not require an
application of commercial fertilizer. Nevertheless, most
of the legumes respond to an application of super-phos-
If the Austrian peas follow a crop of corn or cotton
that had a liberal application of fertilizer, then apply
only super-phosphate at the rate of 300 or 400 pounds
to the acre.
Vicia villosa
Hairy vetch is also known by several other names,
sand vetch, Siberian vetch, Russian vetch, and winter
vetch. It is an annual and grows best in Florida during
winter and early spring.
It is found growing wild in Russia, Germany, and Hun-
gary. In these countries it often occurs as a weed in cul-
tivated fields. It was introduced into the United States

. ii.,' ',,,.
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rig, 29.-Vetch tWo andi a half to three feet high in a pecan grove. Photo taken May 21, (C3ourtesy Aggron-
my Dept., rorida Experiment station)
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i, . W nl ,hI [ he ee hg n ,pc, gro.e. 1 ]ot [aeni~, 1,( ore Ao-
om )e'. Lord Pprmn Saion~.)


first about 1847. This early importation apparently did
not succeed. Another importation was made about 40
years ago by the United States Department of Agricul-
ture. Since that time vetch has been grown in various
parts of the United States until today, it is found growing
in many of the States.
During the past few years a goodly number of farmers
in Florida have been growing vetch. The yields pro-
duced in most cases have been satisfactory. In fact, some
of the yields have been surprisingly large. Of course the
yield will vary depending very largely on the character
and type of soil on which the vetch is grown. On the
better types of soil and under favorable climatic condi-
tions, it is possible to obtain the best yields.
Since hairy vetch is a legume, it is hardly necessary to
say much about its food value. Hay made from vetch,
cut at a proper time and well cured, compares favorably
with hay made from any other legume. It is probable
that best results will be secured in Florida by grazing
it during late winter and early spring, February to April.
Bulletin No. 321, Georgia State College of Agriculture,
gives some interesting data on the yield of vetch and
Austrian winter peas in comparison with other forage
crops as given in the following table.

Weight in Pounds per Average
Acre of Hay Air-cured
Name of Crop 1925 1926 Hay
Crimson Clover ............... 4,033 4,400 4,200
Hairy Vetch .................. 4,200 3,550 3,875
Austrian Winter Pea ........... 4,200 4,000 4,100
Tifton Bur Clover ............. 3,400 3,850 3,625
Yellow Annual Melilotus ....... 2,700 2,100 2,400
Abruzzi Rye ................... 4,900 6,000 5,450
Georgia Red Wheat ........... 4,700 6,200 5,450
Fulghum Oats ................. 4,100 4,700 4,400
Tenn. Winter Barley ........... 4,000 5,650 4,825
Italian Rye Grass ............. 1,850 2,950 2,400
Hop Clover (T. dubium) ........ 1,600 800 1,200

Of the crops mentioned in the above table, Austrian
winter peas and vetch have given the best yields in
Hairy vetch may be planted any time from early in
October to November 15. Plantings in North Florida
may be made earlier in the fall than in South Florida.
Hairy vetch seed should be sown broadcast at the rate



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g 2 _.. ._.. ,* ... .. ...# 4 .? C_
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Fig. 30.-A field of vetch in West Florida that made a yield of 7,405 pounds of green material per acre. Photo
taken March 30. (Courtesy Agronomy Dept,, Florida Experiment Station.)

of 20 to 30 pounds of seed to the acre, after which the
seed should be covered with a disk harrow or turn plow.
The yield of vetch is not as much as for some of the
summer legumes, but the yield is sufficient to warrant
growing if the right type of soil is selected.
The yield of green material may vary from three to
five tons per acre, while under favorable conditions a
yield of eight to ten tons of green material per acre may
be expected. Yields as high as twelve tons of green
material per acre have been reported several times in
Inoculation is just as important for hairy vetch as it
is for Austrian winter peas. The same commercial ma-
terial for inoculation is suitable for either crop. Soil
from a field that has grown any of the following crops
can be used to inoculate the seed: Canada field pea,
common vetch, garden pea, narrow-leaf vetch, purple
vetch and sweet pea.
Hairy vetch requires the same fertilization as Aus-
trian winter peas.
It is probable that best results will be secured by graz-
ing the crop. It can be cut for hay, but it is more eco-
nomical to allow the livestock to graze and harvest the
crop rather than to go to the expense of cutting and cur-
ing for hay. Another point in favor of pasturing the
crop is that it is available for pasturing at a time of year
when other pasture crops are not available.
It is not advisable to begin grazing the crop until it has
made a good growth and the plants are covering the
ground in good shape.
If grazed too early or too close, many of the plants
may be destroyed. In this way the stand will be reduced,
hence the maximum amount of grazing will not be avail-
Medicago Sativa
The growing of alfalfa has been tried in nearly every
county in Florida during the past twenty years. Some
good crops have been produced but no one to date has
been able to maintain a stand so as to produce good crops
year after year.

It is still a debatable question as to the advisability of
sowing the seed each year in the hopes of securing some
winter grazing and perhaps one crop of hay.
The experience of the majority of those who have
grown alfalfa has been about as follows: Sow the seed
in the fall, during November or early in December. In
eight to ten weeks some grazing may be obtained. If
not grazed a cutting of hay may be made the latter part
of March or during April. In only a very few instances
has a second cutting been made.
The Florida State Department of Agriculture carries
on no research work. The reader is therefore referred to
the Florida Agricultural Experiment Station, Gainesville,
Florida, for information of this nature.


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