Soils of the Eastern United States and Their Use XXVII: The Houston Black Clay (Classic Reprint)

Soils of the Eastern United States and Their Use XXVII: The Houston Black Clay (Classic Reprint)

by Jay Allan Bonsteel
     
 

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Excerpt from Soils of the Eastern United States and Their Use XXVII: The Houston Black Clay

These crops may only be raised to advantage locally and in small areas for home use or for the supply of some city in the immediate neighborhood.

The same characteristics of texture and of structure render the Houston black clay one of the strongest and most fertile of

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Excerpt from Soils of the Eastern United States and Their Use XXVII: The Houston Black Clay

These crops may only be raised to advantage locally and in small areas for home use or for the supply of some city in the immediate neighborhood.

The same characteristics of texture and of structure render the Houston black clay one of the strongest and most fertile of the general farming soils to be found in the Gulf Coastal Plain. In the various areas where it occurs com, cotton, oats, wheat, and various forage crops arc all produced to excellent advantage wherever the rainfall is sufficient to bring them to maturity.

The type has never been found suitable for the production of the tree fruits, either apples or peaches, owing undoubtedly to the stiff, waxy nature of the soil itself and to the presence of an extremely stiff clay subsoil near the surface.

Improvement in Soil Efficiency.

In the majority of areas where it occurs the Houston black clay has been cultivated continuously for a period ranging from 25 to 50 years to a few crops, chief among which is cotton. In spite of the wonderful natural fertility of the soil this continued one-crop production has led to diminished yields. As a result, one of the first essentials for improvement in the efficiency of this soil consists in the adoption of a crop rotation suited to the climatic conditions and to soil characteristics of the Houston black clay under its dominant surroundings.

In the more humid sections where the type is found, in east-central and northeastern Texas and in southern Oklahoma, it is probable that cotton should remain the dominant money crop. It is not desirable, however, that this crop should be produced to the exclusion of all others or in such acreage quantity as to prevent a systematic crop rotation upon the farms. Following the cotton crop in any year it is preferable that a crop of winter oats should be sown upon the soil, to be grazed off during the winter or turned under as a green-manuring crop in the succeeding spring. At this time corn should be planted upon the same acreage, and with the last cultivation in the fall cow-peas, crimson clover, or some other leguminous crop should be seeded in between the rows to make a fall and winter growth upon the area. Where the acreage under cultivation would justify it this crop may be followed by a summer crop of cowpeas raised for forage or hay. It would then be possible in the succeeding year to return to the cultivation of cotton.

Local conditions of climate, markets, and possibilities of adjusting the rotation to the fields of the individual farm or plantation will necessarily modify the rotation which might be adopted in any particular locality.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781330799017
Publisher:
FB &c Ltd
Publication date:
07/06/2015
Pages:
22
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.05(d)

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