Report on the Agricultural Experiment Stations, 1952 Page: 6
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6 REPORT ON EXPERIMENT STATIONS, 1952
This tricycle tractor combines a number of operations and saves
much time and labor. Power is obtained from an air-cooled engine
that drives a single power wheel. The wheel is an independent unit
assembly completely detachable through a special pivot-hitch. A Ubolt
type of connection permits easy attachment or detachment of
two wheeled carts for overtop operation on medium- and high-growing
crops. These carts carry supplemental and special equipment such
as tanks, booms, quick-coupling hose connection and nozzles, powerdriven
pumps and dusters, and other pieces of equipment for croptreating
operations. If desired, low-type carts may be attached for
miscellaneous hauling chores on the farm.
Mechanization in cranberry production
Agricultural engineers of the Massachusetts station have converted
a small tractor with modified wheel equipment into a satisfactory
source of power for bog operations at the Cranberry Substation at
East Wareham. Spraying and dusting equipment modified for tractor
mounting have been added. Because there was a need for mechanizing
the operations involved in cleaning and maintaining marginal
and field ditches, a ditch-cleaning device to be used on the tractor was
also designed. The ditch cleaner consists essentially of a beater, driven
by auxiliary power, placed ahead of a dredge snout that is connected
to the suction line of a trash pump. The complete device mounts on
the tractor, which furnishes the power for the trash pump. The waste
is sprayed either on the bog or on the adjacent shore. Traveling at
12 miles per hour, this machine cleans as much ditch every 5 minutes
as one man cleans with a shovel in a day.
About 1/2 inch of sand is added to the surface of the cranberry bog
every 4 years. Although improvements in cultural practices eventually
may eliminate the need for sanding, it is considered at present to
be necessary since the sand covers the trash and helps prune the vines.
Nine men hauling with wheelbarrows and spreading with shovels
require 8 hours to cover 1 acre with 60 to 80 cubic yards of sand. An
hydraulic sander that handles the sand by a method similar to that
followed in water-filtration plants has been developed. Sand from
a bin is introduced into the main distribution line by a jet of water
and is distributed on the bog by a crew handling smaller hoses fed
from the main line. The rate of sand application varies with the
length of the main line-from 20 cubic yards per hour at 400 feet of
main line to 30 cubic yards per hour at 100 feet. With the new equipment
a five-man crew will average I acre every 3 hours.
Anhydrous fertilizer placement
Because large amounts of nitrogen fertilizers are needed in the
Tung Belt, the Mississippi station was called upon to develop special
mechanical means for the proper placement and sealing of anhydrous
ammonia in the soil.
Anhydrous ammonia application is complicated in tung orchards
by the large amount of trash that lies on the surface of the soil and
the large numbers of roots branching out under the surface. The
station developed a machine with a disk coulter that cuts through the
trash. Other features of this machine are the four field-cultivator
springs that trip and reset the applicator, the wings on the bottom of
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United States. Office of Experiment Stations. Report on the Agricultural Experiment Stations, 1952, book, January 1953; Washington D.C.. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5990/m1/8/: accessed March 18, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.