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CHAP. 37. (15.)—THE VETCH.

The vetch,1 too, enriches the soil, and its cultivation en- tails no labour on the agriculturist. It is sown after the ground has been but once turned up, and requires neither hoe- ing nor manuring; nothing at all, indeed, except harrowing there are three periods for sowing it; the first is about the setting of Arcturus, when it is intended for feeding cattle in the month of December, while in the blade; this crop, too, is the best of all for seed, for, although grazed upon, it will bear just as well. The second crop is sown in the month of January, and the last in March; this last being the best crop for fodder. Of all the seeds this is the one that thrives best in a dry soil; still, however, it manifests no repugnance to a shaded locality. This grain, if gathered when quite ripe, produces a chaff superior to that of any other. If sown near vines supported by trees, the vetch will draw away the juices from the vines, and make them languid.

1 Vicia sativa of Linnæus.

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