The yield of a crop of potatoes, the cost of growing and the consequent profits, vary not only with conditions, but with individual operators under similar conditions. In common with every other phase of agriculture, and everything else in the world, the individuality of the man in charge is the most potent factor.

The price is a proposition that the individual grower has no control of and varies with the world's supply and demand.

Average yields do not represent the possibilities of the business, and are not fair to the industry. The best growers always produce crops far in excess of the average for a district or a community. The average producer of potatoes is not a potato grower in the strict sense of the term - he is simply a farmer growing potatoes and giving little, if any, thought or study to the "reasons why" for various operations.

The estimates and figures which follow regarding prices of the various operations and the profits in potato growing show the possibilities and probabilities in various sections. The best grower may make larger profits than some of these - poor growers much less.

In the Twin Falls country in southern Idaho the yield of potatoes is from 100 to 700 bushels per acre. The cost of producing a 150-bushel crop is estimated as follows:

 Plowing ........................... \$ 3.00 Harrowing............ .75 Floating............ 1.00 Seed, average planting 700 lbs. at 2c...... 14.00 Planting............ 2.50 Irrigating first year ........................... 5.00 Cultivating three times at 50C. ........................... 1.50 Digging............. 1.50 Picking - 150 bu. at 4c. ............................. 6.00 Sacks - 75 at 7c. ................ 5.25 Hauling to pit ...................... 2.00 Total........... . \$44.00

If potatoes are worth 50 cents a bushel, this crop would sell for \$75, leaving a profit of \$30.50 per acre, not deducting rent or interest or taxes.

If, however, the grower produces a 600-bushel crop, the cost of producing (figuring twice as much seed and increased cost of the operations) would be about \$95.75. The crop would sell (at 50 cents a bushel) for \$300, leaving a profit of \$204.25.

In their work on "Potato Culture" (published by A. I. Root Co. Medina, Ohio), T. B. Terry of Hudson, Ohio, and A. I. Root of Medina, Ohio, estimate the cost as follows:

 Plowing ......................... \$ 2.00 Harrowing with Thomas and three horses . 33 Rolling ............... 25 Eight bushels seed at 50 cents average .... 4.00 Cutting to one eye......... 1.50 Planting with planter.......... 1.00 Harrowing three times........ 45 Harrowing four times with weeder..... 80 Cultivating eight times, once in a row .... 3.36 Bugs.............. 2.00 Hand pulling or cutting weeds . . . 75
 Digging with four horses........ 2.50 Picking up and storing........ 3.00 Marketing three-mile haul . . . 6.00 Manure........................................................ 5.00 Interest on value of land \$100, at 6 per cent. . 6.00 \$38.94

If the crop makes 250 bushels and sells for 40 cents a bushel, the profit will be as follows:

 250 bushels at 40 cents...... \$100.00 Cost of production........ 38.94 \$ 61.06

Lawrence G. Dodge, scientific Assistant in the Bureau of Plant Industry, gives, in "Farmers' Bulletin 465" of the U. S. Department of Agriculture, the following:

The accompanying table represents the usual expense of growing an acre of potatoes in Aroostook County, Maine, and in many parts of Michigan and Wisconsin. In fact, the second column of figures will represent the expense put into growing the crop in most localities where potato growing is carried on, on a less expensive and through-going basis:

 Cost of supplies and labor with rent of land Maine Wisconsin Cost of supplies and labor with rent of land Maine Wisconsin Plowing . \$1.50 \$1.25 Cultivating . \$3.50 \$1.90 Harrowing . . 50 25 Spraying.. 3.00 *80 24.00 Digging . . 6.00 2.10 Seed . 5.00 2.50 Rent of land. 15.00 5.00 Cutting . . 75 60 Planting .... 75 60 Total 60.00 15.00

*For beetles only.

The more expensive method of growing potatoes usually gives a yield of 275 bushels or more to the acre. Unless an application of barnyard manure is made in addition to the expense estimated, at an added cost of from \$5 to \$10 per acre, the less expensive method rarely produces more than 125 bushels per acre and in a great many instances decidely less than 100 bushels per acre. The increase in yield as a result of the more costly method is sufficient to more than pay the difference in cost, supposing potatoes to sell as low as 33 1/3 cents a bushel. One hundred and twenty-five bushels per acre grown at a cost of \$15 per acre and sold at 33 1/3 cents a bushel yield a net profit of \$26.66 per acre. Two hundred and seventy-five bushels per acre grown at a cost of \$60 per acre and sold at 33 1/3 cents per bushel yield a net profit of \$31.66 per acre. The second profit is \$5 more per acre than the first.

A farmer in Van Buren County, Mich., states that his potato crop, mostly marketed in the fall, sold at an average price of 44 cents a bushel for a period of ten years. At the latter price the more expensive method of culture would yield a profit of \$61 per acre, against \$40 from the cheaper method. Furthermore, some of the leading potato dealers of the North have stated emphatically that a better quality of potatoes is normally obtained with large yields than with small."

The dean of the College of Agriculture of the University of Maine, Dr. William D. Hurd, says:

Many questions are asked as to the cost of growing an acre of potatoes. So many things, different circumstances, facilities for carrying on labor, kind of season, etc., enter into the problem of , cost in such varying proportions that it is almost impossible to give statistics which will prove of much value to others. From records for several years on the college farm at Orono, the cost of growing a ten-acre field of potatoes is about as follows: Man and team labor are reckoned at \$3.50 per day, extra men at \$1.50 per day.

 Ten-acre field Plowing at \$2 per acre........ \$20.00 Harrowing five times, \$3.50 per acre .... 17.50 Fertilizer (home mixture) \$30 a ton .... 225.00 Seed - 130 bushels, 75 cents a bushel 97.50 Disinfecting seed (labor and material) . . 3.00 Cutting seed (by hand) at 6 cents per bushel 7.80 Planting, team and two men three days, \$5 15.00 Harrowing or weeding before crop is up, four times 10.50 Cultivating crop eight times at \$3.50 .... 28.00 Spraying six times (\$1 per acre each application) . 60.00 Hand hoeing and pulling weeds once (if necessary) . 15.00 Digging and hauling to storehouse or station at \$15 per acre.......... 150.00 Rent of land (5% on \$50 per acre value) 10 acres . 25.00 Depreciation of implements, (plows, harrows, planter, sprayer, digger, etc.) value \$250 estimated at 10 % ......... 25.00 \$699.30 Value of crop, 225 bushels to acre (2,250 bushels at50 cents) \$125.00 Value per acre .................. 112.50 Cost of growing per acre .................... 69.93 Net profit per acre ........................ \$ 42.57

The E. L. Cleveland Company of Houlton, Maine, one of the largest growers and dealers of seed potatoes in America, makes the following estimate of the cost of growing an acre of potatoes:

 Commercial fertilizer 1,500 lbs. to 2,000 \$28.50 to \$35.00 Preparing ground for seed .... 3.00 Seed 600 pounds .............. 7.00 Planting......... 2.50 Cultivation........ 3.50 Gathering or harvesting..... 7.50 Preparing for market..... 50 Wear and tear on implements . 50 Rent of land (tenant farmer pays) . \$10.00 to \$20.00 Bordeaux mixture...... 4.00 Paris green........ 50 Hauling to market...... 3.50 Average yield of product per acre . 220 bu. Average value of product per acre . \$88.00 Average size of fields...... 15 acres Average value per acre of land growing such crops 75.00 to 100.00 Profit per acre....... 17.00

Much depends on the weather conditions as to the cost of applying Bordeaux mixture, Paris green, cost of cultivation, labor and general net results.

The above estimates may be regarded the average for a series of years."

Mr. L. F. Shanklin of Lompoc, Cal., estimates the cost of producing an acre of potatoes as follows:

 Use of land (will rent for)....... \$30.00 Seed 400 pounds at 1 1/2 cents ................... 6.00 Plowing and preparation........ 5.00 Cultivation twice - hoeing once .................................. 1.00 Digging and picking......... 3.00 Sacks 5 cents, sacking 5 cents (100 sacks per at) 10.00 Hauling ............................... 1.00 \$56.00

His average crop is:

 70 sacks firsts 115 lbs. to sack at \$1.30 per 100. \$80.50 30 seconds 120 lbs. to sack at \$1.00 per 100. 36.00 30 cow feed or waste at 10 cents per 100. 3.00 \$119.50 Profit............ \$63.50

The cost of producing one acre of potatoes on the farm of W. Dennis & Sons, Kirton, Lincolnshire, England, is:

 Seed per acre 2,600 pounds ....................... \$ 16.00 Rent.............. 15.00 Rate Tax (special Government income tax) 2.50 Eight tons barnyard manure ...... 13.75 Commercial fertilizer (phosphate nitrate, potash) . 15.00 Planting............ 1.25 Cultivation............ 1.25 Harvesting and marketing....... 15.00 Plowing and preparation after planting .... 1.20 Ridging and covering in........ 2.50 Spraying............ 5.00 Hauling............. 5.00 Average cost........... \$ 93.45 Total average revenue........ \$125.00 Profit............. \$ 31.55

W. Dennis & Sons grow 3,000 acres annually and these figures are an average for that acreage.

Prof. L. A. Merrill of the Utah Agricultural College reports that the cost of growing according to Mr. W. F. Harper of Smithfield, Utah, is as follows:

 Plowing, harrowing and leveling the land \$5.00 Fifteen loads of manure at 25 cents per load . 3.75 Hauling manure at 75 cents per load .... 11.25 Seed .............................. 10.00 Cutting and planting seed....... 9.00 Cultivating, weeding and irrigating..... 5.00 Picking and sacking ................................ 10.00 Loading on car ...................................... 4.50 \$ 59.00

To this should be added interest on the money invested in the land which would vary with the price of land, and also taxes on the land; these two items will probably average \$10.