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One of the main objects in view at this farm is to endeavour to improve the breed of Welsh black cattle, sheep, and horses, and judging not only from the appearance of the stock on the farm, but from the successes gained in the show ring, that object is in process of attainment. The present stock kept consists of about 90 head of cattle, 1,600 sheep and lambs, and 18 horses. A variety of experiments in sheep breeding, with a view of ascertaining the best cross to use for obtaining lambs coming early to maturity, has been carried on as in former years.
Feeding experiments with cattle have also been carried out, and these are new to the farmers of Wales. Some of the largelyadvertised foods and meals are taken and their practical qualities ascertained. Experiments have also been conducted on feeding sheep under shelter.
The crop experiments conducted have consisted mainly of trials of different varieties of oats, mangolds, swedes, and potatoes; of the most economical quantity of seed to sow for the oat crop; and the comparative value of potato "seed" from England, Wales, Scotland, and Ireland. This last experiment was undertaken at the instance of the Irish Department of Agriculture. A further experiment on the same lines was carried out with oats, to test the
Owing to the generosity of a gentleman near Chirk, an area of 50 acres of hill land has been presented to the Denbighshire County Council on condition that they plant it and place it under the scientific management of the lecturer in forestry at the College. This the Council have agreed to do, and planting will be begun this autumn. The objects in view will be largely the determination of the species which will grow best, and pay best, on land which is typical of the waste lands of Wales. The species used will be for the most part the commonly grown conifersLarch, Spruce, Scots pine, Corsican pine, and Douglas fir; but in addition some less frequently met with in plantations will be grown with the object of testing their real timber value. A few broad-leaved trees will also. be grown. Several different kinds of soil cultivation, seed sowing, and planting will be tried. The trees will be planted alone and in various combinations, while divers methods of treatment, as for example in the thinnings, will be tested.
It is intended that a careful record shall be kept of all operations, and that results shall be published from time to time to show the progress of the work.
A "nursery" has been started of about half an acre in extent, and is stocked with some 45,000 seedlings of different sorts and ages; while a seed bed, with an area of 300 square feet has been prepared and been sown with the following:-Picea excelsa from the Alps, P. excelsa from Denmark, Picea Omorika, Pinus sylvestris from Scotland, Abies nobilis, Larix leptolepis, Larir occidentalis, Pseudotsuga Douglasii from Oregon, P. Douglasii macrocarpa, and Thuya gigantea.
The expenditure during the financial year, exclusive of forestry and of the farm, has amounted to £2,545. The receipts have included county council grants amounting to £1,860, of which, however, a considerable portion had been due for the previous year; fees from students other than county scholars, £186; miscellaneous receipts, £91; and the Board's grant of £1,000 to the College and the farm. The Board further made, as in the previous year, a special grant of £250 in respect of forestry instruction.