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Traditional agriculture--57

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  • Fedor, Helen
    Sorry for no text or message on Friday: my daughter was back home for one more day before heading back to school (her classes started at 8am today), and I
    Message 1 of 1 , Aug 23, 2010
      Sorry for no text or message on Friday: my daughter was back home for one more day before heading back to school (her classes started at 8am today), and I took the day off.

      H
      All opinions my own



      Work that was done on meadows owned in common was performed collectively. Entire families moved to remote meadows at the end of June. They lived in haylofts and huts for the entire mowing period, which sometimes lasted longer than a month. On the meadows closest to the village, only the mowers stayed overnight, in order to make use of the morning dew for better mowing. Finally, the harvest was usually divided by drawing lots, with each individual transporting his own hay. Wagons (drabin~a'k, rebrin~a'k) were used, and during the winter, sledges. Hay from meadows at high elevations was carried away in sheets, on sticks, or on branches.

      Leaves on cut branches of deciduous trees were dried for winter use (letnina), and were used as a traditional fodder as late as the middle of the 20th century. This archaic fodder for sheep and goats was used throughout the entire Carpathian area. In Slovakia, it was used more commonly during the Wallachian Colonization.

      Clover was another important type of fodder in the traditional breeding of farm animals. It was harvested in the same way as hay, with slight differences mainly in the drying process. On Slovak territory, these were various methods-from spreading clover on shrubs or over cut branches stuck into the ground, to using various types of wooden dryers [drying racks?] (ostrvy, os~trby, sochy, koliby).

      In Slovakia, the ratio of arable land to meadows and pastures changed significantly during the last 30 years of the 19th century, when the amount of arable land increased through plowing fallow fields as well as meadows and pastures. Although this process occurred all over Slovakia at that time, it was more intense in the southern parts of the country. This process, reflected in the different ways of farming on large country estates and small farming estates, also affected the breeding of farm animals.(11) [Did I get this last sentence right??]


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