Grasses are divided into two classes, leguminous and culmifer-ous. To the former belong wheat, barley, oats, and all other grain, for the various modes of cultivating which, the reader will consult the articles in their alphabetical series. Culmiferous grasses may likewise be subdivided into two classes, for agricultural purposes; hence it is of importance that every farmer should distinguish,-1, Those which run to seed-stalks in a manner similar to the common annual species of corn, and the leaves of which gradually decay, in proportion as they approach towards perfection, and totally wither when the seeds are fully ripe. In this division may be ranked Ray or live-grass, to which may be added the Sweet-scented Spring Grass, the Dog's-tail-grass, and the Bent-grass. 2. Those, the leaves of which g ow after the seed-stalks are formed, and retain their succulence and verdure during the whole season. Such are the Fescue and Meadow Grasses, that continue green and succulent, even after the seeds have, attained to maturity, and while the flower-stalks are fading.
We cannot here specify the places of growth, proper soils, or the modes of cultivating the different grasses; but, as many farmers are not sufficiently acquainted with the peculiar names of those plants, and as little improvement can be made in this important branch of husbandry without such knowledge, we shall here state the proper appellations of the best cultivated and uncultivated grasses, referring the reader to the various articles as they occur in their alphabetical order.
I. Cultivated Grasses.
2. Crested Dog's-tail-grass :' Cy~ nosurus cristatus, L.
3. Meadow Fescue-grass : Fes-tuca prutenuis, L.
4. Meadow Fox-tail-grass : Alo-pecurus pratensis, L.
5. Smooth - stalked Meadow-grass : Poa pratensis, L.
6. Roughish Meadow - grass : Poa Trivia Lis, L.
7. Soft Brome Grass, Lob-grass, or Oat-grass : Bromus mollis, L.
8. Meadow Soft-grass: Holcus lanatus, L.
9. Sweet-scented Spring-grass : Anthoxanthum odoratum, L.
10. Timothy-grass: Phleum pra-tense, L.
II. Wild, or Uncultivated Grasses.
1. Sheep's Fescue-grass : Festu-ca ovina, L.
2. Hard Fescue-grass : Festuca duriuscula, L.
4. Annual Meadow-grass: Poa annua, L.
5. Flote Fescue-grass : Festuca fluitans, L.
§. Reed Meadow-grass: Poa aquatica, L.
7. Mountain Melic-grass : Me-lica nutans, L.
8. Creeping Bent-grass : Agros-lis stolonifera, L.
10. Sea Arrow - grass : Tri-glochin maritimum, L. which is peculiarly calculated for sheep-walks.
These are the principal grasses, cultivated and wild, which merit the attention of agriculturists ; but, as their seeds as well as those of other grasses drop from the husks a very short time after, and many of them, before they are ripe, those who wish to preserve such seeds, ought to watch them diligently ; as the neglect of a very few days will deprive the cultivator of an opportunity of collecting them. The Tail Fescue-grass, however, forms an exception: for, as its seeds are not fertile, it can only be propagated by parting and planting the roots.
The culture of grasses has been particularly attended to within these few years; and, as they support many of the most useful quadrupeds, the art of increasing the quantity of leaves round the roots of grasses, is deservedly regarded as an object of great importance. It simply consists in eating off the central stems by sheep, horses, or other cattle, early in the season : hence Dr. Darwin justly observes, that new leaves are produced around the first joint of the stem thus grazed. This practice is especially useful in low meadows, and affords a" double profit, if continued till the month of May; as, in moist situations, a crop of hay is certain to succeed, which, 'by this method, will not only be much finer, and more copious, I but the expence that must otherwise have been incurred in providing hay, may in a great measure be saved by making use of such early grass.
Those of our readers who wish to acquire more minute information respecting the various native grasses, we refer to Mr. Swayne's excellent Treatise, entitled "Spe-cimens of Pasture Grasses," (folio, rl. Is.), a work replete with information.
Grass Plots and Walks, are chiefly formed by covering spots of ground with turf taken from a fine common or down; as this mode of obtaining verdure is more speedy, and, for durability, far preferable to that of sowing the soil with grass-seeds. But, where the latter method is practised, the seeds ought to be procured from those pastures which abound with fine and clear grass. The soil should be previously dug, and carefully divested of all clods and stones : after which it ought to be covered an inch deep with good mould. The seed- is then to be thickly sown, and raked over, to prevent it from being dispersed by the wind. It will, however, be advisable to mix with the seels a considerable portion of white clover, as this will produce a finer surface, and retain its verdure much longer than any common grass.
The turf intended to be laid in gardens, ought to be -selected from such commons as are free from weeds; and, if it is to be transposed to a rich soil, it will be requisite to cover its surface beneath the turf, with sand, or an indifferent mould, that the grass may not become too rank. It will also be necessary to dress the turf late in autumn, every second year, either with ashes, or tan, so that the rains may precipitate tie ameliorating particles into the ground. The grass, when a few inches high, should be mowed closely, or grazed off by sheep, to prevent it from vegetating too luxuriantly ; by which means it will retain its beauty for many seasons; but, if neglected, it will in a few years be overgrown with weeds.