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Wisconsin State Horticultural Society / The Wisconsin horticulturist
Vol. III, No. 9 (November 1898)

Walsh, George E.
American seed farms,   pp. 18-20 PDF (796.2 KB)


Page 18


18    THE WISCONSIN HORTICULTURIST.
AMERICAN SEED FARMS.
By George E. Walsh.
American seeds for garden and field culture are superior
to those of any other country, partly as the result of special
cultivation and selection, but more largely as the result of
peculiar soil and climate adaptation. Seed growing has de-
veloped with marvelous rapidity in this .country within re-
cent years, and the industry now ranks among the leading
ones of the land. We not only supply the enormous demand
for seeds in the United States, but extensive exports of
seeds are annually made. At the present rate of progress
it is only a question of time when American-grown seeds
will be the reliance of the farmers and gardeners of the
whole world. Formerly farmers raised their own seeds,
and it was a rare thing to purchase from professional seeds-
men; but of late years the very reverse has been the case.
The reason of this is plain. The professional seedsman can
raise and sell the seeds cheaper because everything is done
on a large scale, and he can guarantee the finest quality.
So many seedsmen are in the business now that competition
renders it absolutely necessary to success that superior seeds
should be placed upon the market.
The most favorable locations are selected by the seeds-
men to grow their seeds; and where certain plants have be-
come famous because of the peculiarity of the soil or climate,
there their farms are generally located. For instance, the
valley of the Platte River, in Nebraska, is especially favor-
able to the growing of vine seeds, such as cucumber, melon,
and similar plants. Some of the seedsmen contract annually
for hundreds of acres of land in that section simply to ob-
tain the finest cucumber, watermelon and muskmelon seeds.
Excellent seed peas can be grown in Jefferson County, N.
Y., and annually between three and four hundred carloads
of seed peas and beans are shipped from that county. Con-
necticut is famous for her fine onion seeds, and hundreds of
acres are devoted entirely to the raising of onion seeds for
the markets. Michigan ranks next in order for fine onion


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