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Sowing.-The date for sowing crimson clover would seem to depend more upon latitude than upon any other influence. North of the Ohio River it should seldom be sown later than September ist, lest the growth of the plants should not be strong enough to endure the winter weather. Nor should it be sown earlier than July 1st, lest the plants should reach the blooming stage without having made a sufficient growth, an objection which applies to sowing earlier than July ist in any part of the United States. All things considered, August is the most favorable month for sowing the seed north of the Ohio and Potomac rivers. In the South, sowing at a later period is preferable. In the latitude of Tennessee, September would usually prove more suitable for sowing than an earlier date, and near the Gulf, October. But it may be sown earlier and later in these respective latitudes. It is a good time to sow the seed in much of the South when the autumn rains begin to come, and the same is true of the Puget Sound country.
The seed may be sown by hand, by the aid of hand machines, by some makes of grain drills in the same way as grain is sown, and by others with a grass-seeder attachment. When sown by the latter, the seed should usually be allowed to fall before the grain tubes to aid in securing a covering for it; the covering thus provided should be supplemented by additional harrowing and in some instances rolling. When sown by hand or by hand machines on soils East and South, the roller should in many instances follow and then the harrow, but on cloddy surfaces the harrow should be used first and then the roller. No method of sowing the seed is more satisfactory than that which sows it by grain drills, which can deposit it in the soil as grain is sown, as it is then buried at an even depth. Sowing to a medium depth, say, 1/2 to 1/2 inches, is preferable to either extreme.
Whether it is advisable to sow a nurse crop will depend upon conditions. When the seed is sown early, in hot weather the young plants are helped by more or less of shade. Such shade is usually provided by the other factor or factors of the mixture. But when shade only is wanted from the nurse crop. a thin seeding of buckwheat has been found to answer. Melons and tomatoes have in some instances furnished shade satisfactorily, and in others upright growing varieties of cow peas or soy beans. The less complete the preparation of the seed-bed, the greater also is the necessity for shade. In orchards the shade of the trees is usually ample, and in some instances excessive. The same is true of vigorous corn and cotton crops.
Whether this clover should be sown alone or in mixtures will also depend upon conditions. If the crop is wanted solely for the enrichment of the land, it will usually be better to sow it alone, as crops other than legumes do not bring as much fer- · tility to the land. As a rule, therefore, it should be sown alone in orchards. It should also, usually, be sown alone for soiling crops and for hay, but in some instances for both uses it may be sown with such crops as winter oats or winter vetches. On
some soils, however, these will too much crowd the clover plants. On others the reverse will be true. For seed the crop should, of course, always be sowr. alone.
For pasture, crimson clover is sometimes sown with rape, winter rye, winter oats, the common vetch or the sand vetch. When sown with rape, the date of the sowing should be early. With the other crops named the most suitable date for sowing the clover will usually prove the most suitable also for sowing these.
When sown alone, from 10 to 20 pounds of seed are used per acre. With all the conditions favorable, 12 to 15 pounds should suffice. When sown with rape for pasture, 3 pounds of rape and 10 of the clover, or even a less quantity, should be enough. When sown with winter rye or winter oats, about i bushel of each and 10 pounds of clover should suffice, and when sown with the common or the sand vetch, 12 bushel of either and 10 pounds of the clover should be enough. When sown in the chaff, from 2 to 3 bushels ought to suffice, but the amount required will be much affected by the character of the seed crop.
Pasturing.-Crimson clover may be pastured in the autumn or in the spring or at both seasons, either when sown alone, or in conjunction with some other pasture crops, as winter rye, oats, barley or vetches. But it is not probable that it will ever become so popular as some other pasture plants that grow during the same seasons of the year; since, first, when it is grown, it is usually wanted for green
manure; second, it does not under some conditions grow satisfactorily with other crops; and third, when grazed down in the autumn the covering thus removed renders the plants much more liable to perish in the winter. When, however, it is sown early in the season, as in July, along with Dwarf Essex rape, or even alone, much grazing may be furnished, even though the clover should not survive the winter.
It may be grazed by horses, mules, cattle, sheep or swine, but when grazed with cattle and sheep, it is probable that some danger from hoven or bloat will be present, as when grazing other kinds of clover. (See page 94.) This danger, however, will be lessened, if not entirely removed, when nurse crops are grown with the clover, except in the case of rape. The grazing should not begin when the plants are small, lest the growth should be too much hindered at a season when growth is critical.
Harvesting for Hay.-Crimson clover is ready to be cut for hay when coming into, and a little before it is in, fullest bloom. Some authorities claim that it should be harvested when the blooms begin to appear. It should certainly not be allowed to pass the stage of full bloom, lest the hay when cured should prove hurtful to horses and possibly to other live stock, because of the presence of hair balls, which are then liable to form from the hairs so numerously found on this plant. These balls produce death by forming an impermeable wedge in the intestines of horses, thereby impeding and in some instances totally arresting the process of digestion. These balls, almost circular in form, are
composed of minute and rather stift hairs, and sev. eral have been found in one animal. These hairs, numerous on the heads, do not stiffen sooner than the period of full bloom; hence, until that stage is reached in the growth of the plants, the danger from feeding cured hay made from them does not occur.
In New Jersey and the neighboring States, crimson clover is ready for being cut sometimes in May earlier or later, as the season is early or late. Further South it is fit to harvest earlier. At that season it is not easily cured, since then rains are more frequent than in the ordinary harvest season and the weather is less drying. Consequently, hay caps may frequently be used with much advantage by the growers of this hay. (See page 98.)
It is harvested as other clover; that is, it is cut with the field mower, raked when wilted, put up into cocks, and left to stand in these until it has gone through the sweating process, when the cocks are opened out again on a bright day for a few hours prior to drawing them. The tedder should be used freely in getting the hay ready to rake, as at that season of the year it dries slowly.
Securing Seed.-Crimson clover does not ripen quite so quickly after flowering as common red clover, owing, in part, at least, to the less intense character of the heat and drying influences at the season when it matures. Nevertheless, when it is ripe, unless it is cut with much promptness, the seed will shed much from the heads, and the heads will break off much during the curing process. If cut even two or three days too soon, the seeds will not be large