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Posts Tagged ‘history of agronomy

The Sincerest Form of Flattery, Part Three: Got You Covered…

 

Readers will recall Europe’s “The Final Countdown” (brilliantly mashed up with “Smells Like Teen Spirit”); now, via Cover Song Archive (“a collection of songs you know, by people you don’t”)…

 

As we limber our fingers, we might wish an orderly Happy Birthday to agronomy pioneer Jethro Tull; he was born in Basildon in Berkshire on this date in 1674.  While probably best remembered for inventing the horse-drawn plow (around 1701), he is arguably more important for his promotion of sowing seeds in rows rather than “broadcast” (simply throwing them around), so that weeds could be controlled by hoeing regularly between the rows.  To this end, Tull invented a seed drill, which could plant three rows at a time: a  rotary hopper distributed a regulated amount of seed; a blade cut a groove in the ground to receive the seed; then the soil was turned over to cover the sewn seed.  Because of its internal moving parts, the seed drill has been called the first “agricultural machine”; in any case, its rotary mechanism became standard for all sowing devices that followed.

source: Royal Berkshire History

 

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