Having already stated (vol. i. pp. I70-71, and vol. ii. pp. 65-66), the result of several experiments, made with a view to prevent this pernicious distemper, we shall now communicate such methods, as are maintained to have proved efficacious ; thus rendering our accounts as perfect as the nature of this work will admit.
In the 6th vol. of Annals of Agriculture, Mr. Andrews recommends the following steep, as being preferable to any other; having successfully employed it for several years : - Let half a hogshead of strong ley be made, by passing water repeatedly through wood-ashes ; and be put into a copper with half a pound of arsenic. This mixture is next to boil for about five minutes, when the poisonous properties of the arsenic will be so diminished, that birds or fowls may pick up the uncovered grain, after it has been sown, without receiving any injury. The ley should now be poured into a deep vessel, and be suffered to stand till it become cold 5 when a strong wicker-basket, sufficiently capacious to hold two bushels, is to be set in the liquor, with half a bushel of wheat; which ought to be repeatedly stirred; the light grains, and dusty particles that may rise to the surface, being carefully removed. The grain is next to be drained, and laid on a brick or clay floor : a sufficient portion of lime should be strewed upon it. in order to prepare it for sowing. - This quantity of ley; Mr. AndRews observes, is sufficient for steeping 50 bushels of wheat; and he farther remarks, that only a quarter of a peck of lime will be required for drying four bushels, provided it be mixed, the night before it is used.
The vitriolic acid, or oil of vitriol, has lately been employed with success, by an enlightened agriculturist, J. S. JENnings, Esq. as a preventive of smut. The proportions employed for this purpose, were, one gallon of the acid to thirty of water ; which form a proper mixture for immersing wheat. His experiments are of the greatest importance; and we trust that future trials will fully ascertain the efficacy of this process.