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SPRINGFIELD, MISSOURI, AND SURROUNDINGS • 1889


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(previous page) known to agriculture. WHEAT is at home in all these soils, which, as in all limestone countries, give perfection to the plant. The yield per acre, ranges from fifteen to forty bushels, according to soils and culture, and the annual wheat product of the region herein outlined, is greater than the total wheat crop of the six New England States, Delaware, Mississippi, Florida, Nevada, Colorado, New Mexico and Arizona. CORN IS KING of grains here, as blue grass is king of herbage in Old Kentucky. It is a universal crop, flourishing from the crown of the highest hills to the water lines along the lowest valleys. A corn climate and corn soils carry the crop all the way from thirty to ninety bushels per acre, according to soils, culture and season, and the corn crop tributary to the central City of Springfield, is greater than that of all New England, Delaware, Florida, California, Oregon, Nevada, Colorado, Arizona, Idaho, Montana, Utah, Nevada, New Mexico and Washington combined. THE OAT CROP of this same region exceeds that of New England, Delaware, Florida, Louisiana, Colorado, Nevada and all the mountain territories combined. COTTON is a success in the valleys of the southern Missouri and northern Arkansas counties, where thousands of bales of the staple are annually grown. Sugar cane is a splendid crop through all this region, and so are rye and broom corn, beans, peas, Irish and sweet potatoes, peanuts, flax, barley, millet, and every grain, vegetable, and plant of the middle latitudes. To say that this region is THE REGION OF THE SOUTHWEST is not putting it a whit too strong. It is preeminently the land of the garden. There is not a vegetable or plant, or bloom of the middle latitudes that does not flourish in perfection and profusion in these warm, generous, versatile soils. It is a ROYAL FRUIT COUNTRY; the finest indeed between the great lakes and mountains. It has the altitude, soils and climate for the perfection of the apple, pear, peach, plum, cherry and grape, and the orchards and vineyards are the most thrifty and fruitful I have seen in the western country. FRUIT FARMING is carried to splendid proportions, especially along the railway lines, the apple orchards ranging from 500 acres each. The famous Olden fruit farm of 2,500 acres, located on the “Gulf” road, near West Plains, has already 100,000 apple and peach trees in bearing, and with the consummation of the plans of its owners, will probably be the largest orchard in the Southwest. There are several notably fine orchards of 200 to 600 acres each, near the City of Springfield, and hundreds of MODEL ORCHARDS, from five to forty acres in extent, in the region of that city. All along the “Gulf” road, in the newer counties between Springfield and the Arkansas border, one may see young apple orchards of great extent and perfection, many of which have been planted among the stumps of newly cleared lands, which two years ago were selling at $2 to $3 per acre, and the present drift is likely to transform the entire wooded region along the Gulf road into a grand succession of the largest and finest apple orchards in the West. The cultivation of the peach, plum, pear and cherry is correspondingly large and successful, and hundreds of acres of SMALL FRUITS are cultivated with great profit, especially in the near neighborhood of the stations, from which they are shipped to both Northern and Southern cities. Apples and peaches are shipped in all directions, according to demand, and it is claimed by local fruit growers that the market fields are practically illimitable, and that the industry cannot be overdone. The grape grows wild through all this wooded country in great profusion, and the domestic vineyards prove Southwest Missouri a NEW VINELAND of remarkable promise. The standard grapes come to great perfection of size, hue and flavor in these warm woodland soils, and it is not unlikely that this region will soon become as famous for its vineyards as for the extent and perfection of its orchards. Fruit trees and vines (next page)

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