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the hay near the ground from taking injury from the ground moisture. 2. Keep the heart of the stack highest from the first and the slope gradual and even from the center toward the sides. 3. Keep the stack evenly trodden, or it will settle unevenly, and the stack will lean to one side accordingly. 4. Increase the diameter from the ground upward until ready to draw in or narrow to form the top. 5. Aim to form the top by gradual rather than abrupt narrowing. 6. Top out by using some other kind of hay or grass that sheds the rain better than clover. 7. Suspend weights to some kind of ropes, stretching over the top of the stack to prevent the wind from removing the material put on to protect the clover from rain.
Feeding.–The clovers furnish a ration more nearly in balance than almost any other kind of food. If the animals to which they are fed could consume enough of them to produce the desired end, concentrated foods would not be wanted. They are so bulky, however, relatively, that to horses and mules at work, to dairy cows in milk and cattle that are being fattened, to sheep under similar conditions, and to swine, it is necessary to add the concentrated grain foods, more or less, according to the precise object. But for horses, mules, cattle, sheep and goats that are growing subsequent to the weaning stage, and for mature animals of these respective classes not producing, that is, not yielding returns, a good quality of clover hay will suffice for a considerable time at least without the necessity of adding any other food.
It is considered inferior to timothy as a fodder for horses. This preference is doubtless owing largely to the fact, first, that clover breaks up more and loses more leaves when being handled, especially when being transported; and second, that clover is frequently cured so imperfectly as to create dust from over-fermentation or through breaking of the leaves, because of being over-dried, and the dust thus created is prejudicial to the health of these animals. It tends to produce "heaves." This may in part be obviated by sprinkling the hay before it is fed. When clover is properly cured, it is a more nutritious hay than timothy, and is so far preferable for horses, but since timothy transports in much better form, it is always likely to be more popular in the general market than clover. The possibility of feeding clover to horses for successive years without any evils resulting is made very apparent from feeding alfalfa thus in certain areas of the West.
Clover hay is specially useful as a fodder for milk-producing animals, owing to the high protein content which it contains. Dairymen prefer it to nearly all kinds of fodders grown, and the same is true of shepherds. When very coarse, however, a considerable proportion of the stems is likely to be left uneaten, especially by sheep. Because of this it should be the aim to grow it so that this coarseness of stem will not be present. This is accomplished, first, by growing it thickly, and second, by growing the clovers in combination with one another and also with certain of the grasses.
Clovers are especially helpful in balancing the ration where corn is the principal food crop grown. The protein of the clover crop aids greatly in balancing the excess of carbo-hydrates in the corn crop, hence much attention should be given to the production of clovers in such areas.
Renewing.–Because of the comparatively short life of several of the most useful of the varieties of clover, no attempt is usually made to renew them when they fail, unless when growing in pasture somewhat permanent in character. To this, however, there may be some exceptions. On certain porous soils it has been found possible to maintain medium red clover and also the mammoth and alsike varieties for several years by simply allowing some of the seed to ripen in the autumn, and in this way to re-seed the land, a result made possible through moderate grazing of the meadow in the autumn, and in some instances through the absence of grazing altogether, as when the conditions may not be specially favorable to the growth of clover. : It is not uncommon, however, to renew alfalfa, by adding more seed when it is disked in the spring, as it sometimes is to aid in removing weeds from the land. The results vary much with the favorableness of the conditions for growing alfalfa or the opposite.
In pastures more or less permanent in character, clovers may be renewed by disking the ground, adding more clover seed, and then smoothing the surface by running over it the harrow, and in some instances also the roller. This work is best done when the frost has just left the ground for a short distance below the surface.
Some kinds of clover are so persistent in their habit of growth that when once in the soil they remain, and therefore do not usually require renewal. These include the small white, the yellow, the Japan, burr clover and sweet clover. In soils congenial to these respective varieties, the seeds usually remain in the soil in sufficient quantities to restock the land with plants when it is again laid down to grass. Nearly all of these varieties are persistent seed producers; hence, even though grazed, enough seed is formed to produce another crop of plants.
Clovers as Soil Improvers.-All things considered, no class of plants grown upon the farm are so beneficent in the influence which they exert upon the land as clovers. They improve it by enriching it; they improve it mechanically; and they aid plant growth by gathering and assimilating, as it were, food for other plants.
All clovers have the power of drawing nitrogen from the air and depositing the same in the tubercles formed on the roots of the plants. These tuber-. cles are small, warty-like substances, which appear during the growing season. They are more commonly formed on the roots within the cultivable area, and therefore are easily accessible to the roots of the plants which immediately follow. Clovers are not equally capable of thus drawing nitrogen from the air, nor are the same varieties equally capable of doing this under varying conditions. The relative capabilities of varieties to thus deposit nitro
gen in the soil is by no means equal, but up to the present time it would seem correct to say that relative capability in all of these has not yet been definitely ascertained. With reference to the whole question much has yet to be learned, but it is now certain that in all, or nearly all, instances in which clovers are grown on land, they leave it much richer in nitrogen than it was when they were sown upon the same.
They also add to the fertility of the surface soil by gathering plant food in the subsoil below where many plants feed. They have much power to do this, because they are deep rooted and they are strong feeders; that is, they have much power to take up food in the soil or subsoil. Part of the food thus gathered in the subsoil helps to form roots in the cultivable area and part aids in forming top growth for pasture or for hay. If grazed down or if made into hay and fed so that the manure goes back upon the land the fertility of the same is increased in all leading essentials. This increase is partly made at the expense of the fertility in the subsoil. But the stores of fertility in the subsoil are such usually as to admit of thus being drawn upon indefinitely.
Clovers improve soils mechanically by rendering them more friable, by giving them increased power to hold moisture, and by improving drainage in the subsoil. Of course, they have not the power to do this equally, but they all have this power in degree and in all the ways that have been named.
Cloyers send down a tap root into the soil and