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Tile-drainage image
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In a late issue I noliced an article relative to the i tu port anee of tile-drainage, at the same time soliciting correspondenee on the subject. Bing too unfortunate to owu auy farui lands I have had no occasion to to use tiles uiyself ; but, engaged for sev eral years in their manufacture, I believe I have acquired at least a liniited knowledge iMiuvriiiiiK their use. My experienee (if such it can be called) is ba.sed on what I have seen and heard, and not what I have done. After five years' investigaron of this subject, it is remarkable not to meet at least one (except it be sonie " moss-laok fogy ") who has given expression to dissatt-faction wiili the tiles themselyes. It is true that sonie have not achieved what they havedesired, but the general admission is that the plan of draining, and not the instrument, has been at faulL It should not be understood, however, that "old fogies" condemn the use ot tile after using tlu'iii, for in that case they bccome their waruiest advocates. It is before they have wi tiios.sed the operation of the subterranean channels that they give vent to grave and unqualified doubt. Many farmers report that the reauiting crops will pay for the tiles and their intcrnient in one year, while there are very few who say that more than two years are required, such cases generally being those where the lands drained were not previoualy of an excessively wet nature. ONE PARTY WRITINQ SAYS : "Inspeaking of the application of draintile to the underdrainage of farms, I wou'd say that I have employed about 5,000 rods on one farm witli the most profitable results. Although the original intention was to provide a remedy for the failure of crop3 in wet weather, I find the tile equally effective in extreine dry weather, inamnuch as the soil influenied by them retains its moisturc much better than that which is nol drained, and, moreover, becomes fiuely powdered, as it were, while in other cases the same cakes and forms itself into hard, indestructible clods. I have also employed in the neighborhood of 1,600 rods on other farms, and sball continue draining until I shall have all my farms thoroughly drained." ANOTHER PARTY WIUTES : " Several years ago I began underdrainn; farui-lands by means of tile. My experience is that at the present price of tile the extra crops resulting therefrom will pay in one year the expenses of the die and the ditching. ... I have detennined not to quk until my work is complete." A THIRD PARTY SAYS : " Havini? employed quite a number of tileí, 1 think I never spent nioney to a better purposn, the result being abundant crops where, in the absence of such iuiprovements, the fields would have been ii;irreu except in tbe product of water. Ever since my first experience, one ditch bas furnished water for my stock. The snpply being constant the stock can drink when thirsty, and need not abide the time when some one can attend to thoir wants. Be8ides, in the winter staison the temperatura of the water is not chilly like that drank from trouhs or creeks, but the same ia ev'eh, and of a desirable inJ liealthful degret' A KOUllTir SAYS : " f have r.ii-icil dm fi-'lii.-i drained by tile si'vt-iiiy-livi: butiulg tf cirn to tliü aore, liuru the crops would huve been an eotire iHÍtura," SIMILAR EXPEUIKNCKS uuuld beincL finiti'ly extended, [t ia noticeable tint in s iuic caes the entire irop ia Mtti tfl the euiployraent of tile. lint it is not .-t.iied wfi:it the benefit is tbat must ('rom ni'cessiiy be realized on the lands idjawm to those actually draiued. It ia u kii'iwu l'acl thac the exeessive moiisture of every low piece of gnund exerts an iiitiiumrc Ly saturation (in a very wide s iip d( land eontiguous to it; so that wliile tlie farmer i obligcd to leave sucb low uiócet i v and plow around theiu, he iiKiains hut a iiicicir erop Irom dlUOh ground tbat he does till becaua influeueed un ivoidabív by the untillablc. upa qi tili.' necisary to bc u-ed. Souue declare ihat the smaller the tile the better it i-, i'rovi.lei) u will do the required worlc. VVhile this d i:trinr is true. it s nevertheIcga liable to crcatu tni-chievou- and unfuvoralile resulls. Many who adopt this cieed in tryirijt to use the smallest possible sise too t'requently choose too siuall ones, and wliile ihcy flow f uil they leave the Sejdu too moit. The writer haw to be iníornied of the first case of the inefficiency of a tile dito!) owing to the oversize of the tile, while on tbe other hand he has on his mind scores ol exatuples of the unsatisfactory effects ot the interuient of too sniall tiles. One party removed four-inch tile and substituted aiz-ineh after a lengthy tiial. A ereat number have had to run auxiliary ditches alongside ol' tbose previously put in, which is not a bad plan, however. except as to cost, for the more ditches thd better. Another's field is now flooded because depending on four-iDch tilt: instead of six-inch. Still auother is iioini; to Pilt in ptat-ïnoh uliuro ho Kcwj rour-incn. It is not declared that dissatisfaction never did arise in the use of tile having an unnecessarily large calibre, but it is sinccrely believed that such cases are very limited in number, if theyexiat at all, while the same does frequently have place wlien the tiles have not the requisitu capacity. IT MAY BE LAID DOWN AS A RULE that wlien the neoessary capaoity can be determinad, the smallest possible size may be used ; but as more often than otherwise thfl capacity ia not accurately determined, i t would be better to allow a litt'e in the direotion of more. In ascertaining the requisite capacity, several circumstances ara neceasfcry to bc t.iken into consideraiion. The arca of the ground to be drainml must not be lost sight of, for the larger the area the L'reater the rainfall, other things being eqxuA. 'l'he situation of the land is also important, for if there is no water to be convejed awaj exoept that i'alling iiumcliately on the ground under cousideration, then the sizc of tile may be quite diminutive. But if such land is spouty, showing that the rainfall occurred somewhere eba, it is evident that there must be more water disposed of tlian has fallni in the fortn oí' rara ra tlmt ioiniediate locality. Agaiu, it freqnently occurs that a man owns what is legally ternied the inferior land, while hi.s Deighbor, situaled above hiiu, owns the superior land, in which case t will be neoessary tor the formcr to provide meaim sufficient to dispose of (ho wator flowing fróm the farm of' the latter upon the lower lands. Tile that would be large enough in oine clitnate.s would not i-uffice in others on account of' more or less rain, and ali i'wioi? to the deuree of the aun's evaporative powers. The leM the evaporaiion the larger the tile needed, as evaporación is a mat uiixiliary in dupoaipg of the water. It is, bqwever, an undcsirable aid, as ita tendetwy is to reduce the temperature of tiic Boil. IVrhapH thereisno circumstance OODOeoled with drainage so important in deiermining the capacity of tile as the ('all. A t hree-in.-h tile given one-sixth of' an inch fall to the rod will convey 780 gallons of water, but with six inches to the rod it will carry 3,740 gallons to the hour. 1I1K ADVANTAOES TO BE DERIVKD Prom the use of tile are numorous. They remove the stagnnnt water and leave the tielils in a healthful state to reccive and dcvelop the seeds. T' ■( y reinier the soil 6t for earlier cultivation, enabling the farmer to frtify hini 11' tgsinst Nature's autumnal guerrilla, " Jack Frost." They produce a porous soil, which admits the ans raya to the roots of vegeution, which, beoiiining warm theroby, grow rapid y and vigorously. ÑVhen any vegetable product rots or decompóees, the rosult is a fi-riilizing product which not only contains the constitunis der ivi-il Grom the soil, but other derivd fro nntaot with the air. Lnd that is not underdraine 1 does not permit the water to percolate, which in consequence must Öow uway on the tiurface, car rying wih it these f'ertilizers to sonie raviBA, [M-rli.ips, ünally to be dischiirged into the Huil' of M"xi(. Undcrdrainod land lieing open tor the recept ion of TT ter, the latter i i's dowiurird imirne carrie tlio fertilizers with it, making the soil richer. I Thoy ronder soil los sticky, and the Hume pulverizes instead of eaking, and, as they give rise to undivided tields, the frequency of' turning with (lie plow team and reaper is avoided. Stook will not touch gras remoto from a tile drain until that uear the drain is consumed. In many cases an everlasting stream of living water for stock is procured. THEV EXCEL THE ORDINARV BLIND DITCH, inacuiuch as they are everlasting ; and the open ditch, beoause not a banier to croasing the fields ; and, owing to their suctioa, they remove water froui the soil itself, as well as ttiat upon the surface. Besldes, no matter how unlevel the surfaee of the fields, the water starts out in search of the tiledrain, and, il" thu ditch is uut too distant, the water will fiud it, even though nccessary to go over hills and across valleys to do so. They remove surplus water only, leaving a field in dry season more moist than if not drained. As a sand pile is always inoist uu inch or so beneath its surfaoo, so is a porous or granulated soil. Not so with a tenaoious one, as evaporation overcoiues capillary attraotion, making it only a quustion of timo to bake and dry the eartli for several feet downward. Farmers do not lose any appreciable time, as they can plow in a few minutes alter a rain. Farmers who underdrain fcave proportionately less cobs to baul to market, ulsu lesa bulk of any agricultural product for the sarao amount ot monoy. The temperature of tho soil is raised higher, consequent on the diminishing of the evaporation. Surface -was hing is prevented, while the richness of the soil is retained, and "the season of labor and vegetation is greatly lengtheoed." As the inteotion of the Tribune is to give hints to those who need a little light on the subject of " salvation by drainage," it inight not be amiss to MAKE A FEW SUOÜESTIONS concerning the manner of usipg tile. 1. Always secure a good outlet. 2. Onethird or one-sixth of an inch to the rod is sufBcient fall, but the grade should in all cases bo regular, ai otherwise no good results can be secured. Within reasonable limits, however, the more fall the botter. ',i. üutlets should be supplied po as to avoid the pos-sibility of cattle treading on them, and means should be provided to prevent the ingress of small animáis, such as rats, miuks, skunks, muskrats, and the like. 4. There is a difference of opinión as to where the ditohing should commence, but the majority of'ditohers begin to dig at the lower end and to lay the tile at the upper end. 5. The deeper the ditch tho farther the tile will draw from each side. 6. Tight joints are important when running nuar hedge fences or willow patches, as the roots trom these may euter the tile and obstruct the passag3. 7. "Telescoping" is highly profitablc, as it is unnecessary to have as largo a tile at the upper ond or niiddle of the ditch, as at the lower end. 8. For grading, the spirit level and "tapering board" (the same being gradually tapored from end to end, so as to bo as mueh narrower at one than at the other as the fall is per rod) are very good, but where one has no spirit level, the "A" or "span" level is the best, as any one can make it of three pieces of board. BEFORE CLOSINft [ would like to say a few words on a subject that above all things coucerns the pro ple of this Siate at the present time. It 18 tha application of drain-tiles to townihip or country roads. It is now a generally admitted fact that the only practical plan ot niakiug good country roads is to remove the water therofroiu firt of all thinm. The open ditch has boen unsuocessfully tried for several years. It seeuis to serve more as a baMn ihan as a couductor of water. Open di 'olies never draw water fio:u the carth. In other wurds, water is not torced intoU(;h ditches by aunospherie jire-sure, bilt dependa entirely on gravity in reaching lhe aqueducts. As thftM duches are, ibr ihe greater part of the jour, out of order and imperativo, water cjlleets on eacb side of the in ïmmeose qnantities, and, though it tuay not tlow over the central part ot the ro..d, it is well knowu that oapillary attractiou- a vury quiet hui, nevertheless, aesiduowa woiker - U employing the luillions at hair like terreno tmbei to elévate the waler lying at the Éta jjp M.Mu 'tdiñtetf &tSt"ÍM weeks, Mmetim, after ratM, there il ■ ireat quantity of water in that identical part of the road tW was eonstructed with reference to beinii "high and dry." M mv emerpriing Hoad Coiumisxiooers (and we eau refer with pride to our own) have tried the experiment of disposing of the water by meaos ol tiles, souie laj ing a line along oue or b th sides, others laying tliein in the axis of the road, all parties ranoMf ra oocasional laterai. The imst prulituble result have been obtained by either mei bod, but that of laying the tile on both sides of the road has preven the best. A great many Huppo.-'e that the roid beoouies too compact to admit of percolation ; but practical tests demónstrate otherwise. Several roads go drained are well known to the writer, and they are giving good satisf'action. No water lies at the present time on the surface of these roads, while there are great quantities of that element lyiug upou other roads which ordinarily were not half so bad. It is not to be doubted that of tJua tWAiiehikres having tile for their outlets would sufficiently in tweoty. fuur hours of good weaiher for teams to draw loads of two tons upon. They are not emirely dry and dusty, but they are ready to dry. It would be a good idea, it seems to the writer, for sonie of the Road Comrnissioners to give their experienee.