Varieites of oats

Of this grain the varieties are more numerous than of any other of the culmiferous tribe. These varieties consist of what is called the common oat, the Angus oat, which is considered as an improved variety of the other, the Poland oat, the Friesland oat, the red oat, the dun oat, the Tartar or Siberian oat, and the potato oat. The Poland and potato varieties are best adapted to rich soils; the red oat for late climates; and the other varieties for the generality of soils of which the British isles are composed. The Tartar or Siberian kind, though very hardy and prolific, is much out of use, being of a course substance, and unproductive of meal. The dun out has never been much cultivated, and the use of Poland and Friesland is now much circumscribed, since potato oats were introduced; the latter being considered, by the most discerning agriculturalists, as of superior value in every respect where the soil is rich and properly cultivated.

Oats are chiefly sown after grass; sometimes upon land not rich enough for wheat, that has been previously summerfallowed, or has carried turnips; often after varley, and rarely after wheat, unless cross-cropping, from particular circumstances, becomes a necessary evil. One ploughing is generally given to the grass lands, usually in the month of January, so that the benefit of frost may be gained, and the land sufficiently mellowed for receiving the harrow. In some cases a spring furrow is given, when oats succeed wheat or barley, especially when grass seeds are to accompany the crop. The best oats, both in quantity and quality, are always those which succeed grass; indeed, no kind of grain seems better qualified by nature for foraging upon grass land than oats; as a full crop is usually obtained in the first instance, and the land let's in good order for succeeding crops.

From twelve to eighteen pecks of seed are generally allowed to the acre of ground, according to the richness of the soil and the variety that is cultivated. Here it may be remarked that land sown with potato oats requires much less seed, in point of measure, than when any of the other sorts are used; because potato oats both tiller well, much better that Poland, and have not an awn or tail like the ordinary varieties. On that account, a measure contains many more seeds of them than of any other kind. If land is equally well cultivated, there is little doubt but that the like quantity of seed given when barley is cultivated, may be safely trusted to when potato oats are to be used.

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