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Wisconsin State Cranberry Growers Association / Thirty-eighth annual proceedings of the Wisconsin State Cranberry Growers' Association. Thirty-eighth convention, Pavilion, near Nekoosa, Wisconsin, August 12, 1924. Thirty-eighth annual meeting, Wisconsin Rapids, Wisconsin, January 13, 1925
(1924-1925)

Searles, Andrew
The value of sand,   pp. 20-23 PDF (982.5 KB)


Page 20


20 WISCONSIN CRANBERRY GROWERS' ASSOCIATION
splendid Howe vines to Wisconsin. I got one car, and Guy Potter got
several. The Howe appears to be a most aggressive vine.
Those Eastern men that we met at the Exchange meeting are cor-
dial, courteous Cranberry Kings, worthy of our admiration.
Mrs. Whittlesey and I did Washington D. C. on our way home, and
here we are.
THE VALUE OF SAND                              i
By ANDREW SEARLES
The first step taken in sanding cranberry bogs was by Mr. Ralph
Smith, father of our present secretary, about thirty-five years ago.
He had a small field, only about six acres under cultivation at that
time. That was the first field that had ever been surfaced and plant-
ed on the clean bog. Mr. Smith also showed me a small field of only
a few square rods of the most beautiful cranberries I had ever seen,
beyond any conception of what a cranberry bog should look like.
I resolved that if the time ever came when I could, I should pos-
sess a similar cranberry bog. It was perfectly evident that that was
the only rational, sensible method to pursue in the growing of cran-
berries in Wisconsin. When I got home, I broke that same subject
to my brother. What a wonderful piece of cranberry bog that was!
But we were under the pursuit, at that time, of a thousand acres of
cranberries, and, as my brother said, we couldn't possibly sand one
thousand acres, or any part of one thousand acres. None of it was
suitable. It was the natural bog, ditched and fitted up as we at that
time supposed was the thing to do, without any surfacing, trusting to
luck, and believing that we could do what the people had done at
Berlin.
The next step I saw taken in the cranberry sanding process was
attempted by Mr. A. E. Bennett. He had several acres surfaced, and
he decided to try the experiment. During the wintertime Mr. Ben-
nett drew sand upon this ground, and put on this sand in strips across
his field about a rod in width, and, as I remember now, about six
inches in depth. He sanded a strip, skipped a strip, and sanded again.
At that time it was usually the habit of cranberry men to hold the
water well up to the surface. You can imagine what this did to the
sand experiment strip. Vines refused to flourish, and we all stood
back and looked on and shook our heads. We didn't know just what  V
was the matter. Maybe Mr. Smith's experiment was wrong. Still
we were undecided.
Later, John A. Gaynor obtained a small appropriation from the
state for experimental purposes. Three experimental stations were
started, which later were consolidated into one. They didn't appear
to be getting anywhere with three stations scattered out, each man


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